New PC Advice

Alright, my current PC i built myself 2 Years ago now (Wow, did not realise it was so long ago)

Currently, the specs are:

AMD 64 3200+
1GB Ram (No idea of brand)
120GB IDE Hard drive
XFX 7800GT 256Mb

Now, i am after a new PC that is capable of playing upcoming games on Med/High settings, such as Crysis, which means my new card must be DX10 Compatable.

I am comfortable with the nVidia cards, but don't know much about the ATI Series. Likewise i would prefer AMD over Intel, but i hear the new intels are quite good.

I am looking to spend no more than £600 on the new system.

I have looked on ebay, and there all the 'business' sellers, that advertise a good system, but some of the parts bring it down, such as it could have a good graphics card / processor, but **** motherboard.

If anyone could recommend parts to buy, that are good value for money (Bare in mind, US is Cheaper than UK for PC Parts, So if you could link websites that offer UK Prices, would be appreciated).

One final note, is it worth buying the parts seperatley, and building the pc from scratch (Like before) or buying one already made.

P.P.S - Is there any websites that offer the ability to buy good, ready made PC's (Such as alien ware, but cheaper).

21 answers Last reply
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  1. Sorry, my invisible text skills need some tone; what are your specs again?
  2. Appologies (copy/paste).
  3. Hmm. You could always keep your current motherboard, by an X2 for cheap, throw in another 1GB of ram, a new PSU and a new GPU and you should be alright.

    If not, $600 isnt gonna get you too much in the way.

    What resolutions do you play at?
  4. Hello, First of all, its £600, which is $1200 :)

    My biggest black hole is the GPU, I have not kept track on graphics cards since my last build 2 years ago, and i have no idea what so ever which one is good or not any more.

    I am looking for a DX 10 Graphics card that is capable of playing games such as crysis, but i am not looking to spend something stupid like £300 (Which i did on my current card).

    I currently just use 1024*768, As i have a crappy 19" CRT Monitor, which i hope to upgrade to a TFT/LCD, But i have no idea which as of yet, nor what size.
  5. Sorry, apparently I caught a slight case of retard. Its going around.

    Well, unless you have the mind to tinker, dont bother with an X2900 as you wont get the results you'd like unless you plan to have some fun with it. =)

    I have no idea about UK sites, but i'm fairly confident in that budget you could piece together something solid. Start with your platform: Intel, if you dont want to shoot for the 2900, then stick with an 8800 series, nothing wrong with that.
  6. Thanks for your reply.

    At the moment it looks like i'm going to have to go over my original budget.

    Im just going to price up a few systems, and then narrow each part time depending on the comments / feedback i receive.

    To start with,

    AMD AM2 Athlon 64 5200+ Windsor Core, Dual Core 2.6GHz, 2x 1mb Cache, Energy Eff'''' Retail
    Price: £74.91

    640MB BFG Technology 8800GTS, OC, PCI-E (x16), Mem 1600 MHz, GDDR3, GPU 550 MHz, 2 x Dual Link DVI-I
    Price: £245.56

    Asus Crosshair V2 R.O.G NF590 SLI, S AM2, PCI-E (x16), DDR2 533/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX
    Price: £133.94

    2GB (2x1GB) Corsair TwinX XMS2, DDR2 PC2-6400 (800), 240 Pins, Non-ECC Unbuffered, CAS 5-5-5-12
    Price: £46.99

    Hard Drive
    320 Gb Western Digital WD3200AAJS Caviar SE, SATA300, 7200 rpm, 8MB Cache, 9 ms
    Price £46.99

    650W Coolermaster eXtreme PSU (RP-650-PCAP)
    Price: £68.09

    Total: £628.14

    I do not plan on Overclocking (Never done it before), So if you could comment / suggest alternative parts, value for money etc.

    The PSU I just picked out, I would really appreciate if someone could point one out.

    The memory, again, i just picked out as it was Corsair, I dont understand memory timings or anything, nor do i know if i should stick with 2GB, or upgrade to 3/4GB, If you could recommend any good value memory.

    Im not happy about spending so much on the graphics card (Seeing i spent £300 on my last one, and now having to get rid of it), but from what i see, to be able to play any of the top end games (DX10) i need one of the 8800 series, Is it worth the extra money for the 640mb over the 320mb?

    I still have the smaller parts to add, Case (Currently have an X-Blade case, think it needs changing), and a Monitor (LCD - No idea what to look for in monitors, when it comes to gaming), I already have the basics i will keep, mouse, keyboard, dvd/r, sound card

    I appreciate your help, and time.
  7. From what I hear, the extra money is not worth it for the 640. I suppose that could one day down the road change though.

    Also, the SLI Motherboard is kind of a waste if you don't plan on running 2 GPU's. Of course, it doesn't hurt anything either.

    If you go with 4gigs, you will need a 64bit operating system. Personally, I'd just stick with 2gigs, and Corsair makes good RAM.

    Other than your processor, your current rig is exactly the same as mine. I have an Opteron 148.
  8. Thanks for your comments, I still want good performance to the point that i could run a game such as Crysis smoothly on Mid/High settings (Using same example).

    Would i keep same/similar performance by downgrading the GPU to the 320mb, instead of the 640mb.

    The motherboard i saw in another thread, after some research it seemed like a decent one. Would it be worth downgrading that, or should for the price, should i keep it incase i was to add another card at a later date.

    I must also think of, by the time where i could actually afford to 8800GTS's, i would have thought that it would be time to uprade the system again, as a whole.
  9. <--- that will serve nicely for psu research. Sorry about not putting it in the tages, I'm using quick reply. Even though it is still easy. <.< >.>

    Unless you are planning on running 2 video cards, I wouldn't get a crossfire mobo. You could get a perfectly good P35 D3SR(I think that is what it is called) for $90(I guess £45). Most people's Mobo and CPU cost less than their GPU.

    If you are thinking about downgrading to the 320mb, then I would wait until oct. 29 which is then unofficial relsease date for the 8800gt 512MB. It is rumored to be cheaper($250) and have better preformance than the 8800gts 320Mb.

    Meh, I don't really know though. Trust people more than me.
  10. Thanks for the link aadamszc,

    Last time i was looking for a PSU, i did not need more than 450-500W PSU, now im looking at 600W+ lol.

    From the link you provided it seems that this one seems alright...

    650W Silverstone ST65ZF-GM SLi Dual PCI-E EPS12v ATX12v v2.01 PSU

    It seems quite expensive for a power supply though, whats your thoughts?

    Do you see any on Scan that seem good value for money, but will do the job?
  11. Turv said:

    Would i keep same/similar performance by downgrading the GPU to the 320mb, instead of the 640mb.

    That all depends on the resolution you are planning on playing at, if you have a 22" or so monitor with a 1680x1050 resolution it wouldn't hurt to get the 640mb card, because it will take more video memory to play higher resolutions smoothly, but if your just staying at 1280x1024 then you probably wouldn't see much of a difference between the 320 and 640mb card.

    If you have a resolution above 1680x1050, like a 24" monitor, then you should probably get the GTX for the extra memory. just sayin
  12. I've never had a monitor big enough to play above 1024*768 haha, So im not quite sure yet,

    I would probebly pick up either a 19" or 22" LCD Monitor...However I will stick to the 640Mb to ensure it can cope with both resolutions well.
  13. Couple of things:
    1) CM PSU's are rated very well. Yes it might work, but not sure for how long. I would recommend at least these:
    Antec earthwatts EA430 ATX12V v2.0 430W Power Supply 100 - 240 V UL, CUL, FCC, TUV, CE, CB, C-tick, CCC – Retail

    Corsair VX 450w Power Supply - CMPSU-450VX [...] 66485.html
    Corsair 450w review

    Not the best but pretty close for the $
    PSU - $100 shipped - $10 for google checkout = $90! Good solid PSU for the $, hard to beat.
    Corsair 520W SLI Certified Modular ATX Power Supply - CMPSU-520HX

    PSU - ~$125 shipped Good solid PSU, straight from OEM and cheaper than Newegg

    Here's a link to see where certain PSU's rate, as far as quality is concerned.
    PSU Tiers

    2) I'd wait for the 8800gt's to be released at the end of the month. As stated earlier, they are reported (rumored) to be better than the 88800gts's and also be cheaper.

    3) Your mobo is overpriced, if you ask me. You can get just as good mobo's for a lot less $. You can use this extra $ for whatever you want to upgrade. Even this mobo is about $150 USD cheaper than yours and has pretty much everything the crosshair mobo has. I'd use this $150 to upgrade to a 8800gtx or just wait for the 8800gt's/2950's to come out.

    4) I'm assuming your using a case that you already own.
  14. Hmm..maybe take a look at this:

    It's a zalman, for £61.69 ext. & £72.49 inc. It also has 600 watts. Zalmans are notorious for running pretty quite. Also, it's a tier 2.

    @lunyone: I think that he is from the U.K. On the same note, I don't think that new-egg ships there. Just thought that even though your suggestions were good, he might have a bit more of limited availability.
  15. Thanks for the reply lunyone, and aadamszc,

    From the info you provided i have a choice between:

    Corsair HX 520W ATX2.2 Modular SLI Compliant PSU
    Price: £68
    I beleive its the same one as the one you posted a link to, but will cost me $40 extra (Since UK is alot more expensive...)

    Or the, 600W Zalman ZM600-HP Heatpipe Cooled Modular PSU +80% Eff
    Price £72

    The price is pretty much the same, but which would be better, i would personally prefer to buy it from scan (Hence the zalman) but if the Corsair is better quality, i will go with that.

    The Motherboard, I do not know much at all, so some guidence is needed here, I would need an AM2 socket motheboard, and im not really fussed of its features as long as it works! Hence the Asus Crosshair,

    Can you recommend one, If you feel that is too expensive?

    As for the graphics card, i will wait for the 8800GT release before ordering one, incase it turns out ot be better value for money.
  16. I'm just not totally sure that the 520watt corsair would handle your computer. Especially if you are planning to be running 2 8800gts'. Lunyone is the one who actually helped me decide on my power supply, so he knows a bit more about it.
  17. I don't plan on running 8800GT's in SLi for a good while, so anything that will support just the one 8800GTS and the above is good enough for me.
  18. Well, I actually have to go run an errand right now, but I would look for anything tier 2 and above with 500+ watts. That Corsair HX 520watts looks pretty good, but if you can't find anything from your site look for something similar.

    A person also lead me to this website:, very good for PSU reviews.

  19. Ok, the current Spec now is:

    640MB BFG Technology 8800GTS
    AMD AM2 Athlon 64 5200+ Windsor Core
    2GB (2x1GB) Corsair TwinX XMS2, DDR2 PC2-6400 (800)
    320 Gb Western Digital WD3200AAJS Caviar SE, SATA300, 7200 rpm, 8MB Cache
    600W Zalman ZM600-HP Heatpipe Cooled Modular PSU
    Abit KN9-SLi NF570 SLI, S AM2
    19" LG L1900R, Black, 4 ms, DVI/VGA, 1280x1024, 2000:1
    Aplus Twin Engine Case

    I did not know anything about Monitor's and i would have only gone for a wide screen if it was 20+", but i could not afford that, so i got a standard 19" LCD, However i feel that would be suitable, as i have used a crappy 19" CRT Monitor for years on 1024*768 res.

    The Graphics card is subject to change depending on what happens when the 9800 series is released.

    Any comments, or changes you recommend?

    Btw, Total cost is £770
  20. Well, honestly, it looks pretty damn perfect, but you are spending £170 more than you originally wanted to. If you are good with that, then cool. If not, we may need to cut back.

    If you needed to, you might be able to find a cheaper GPU and/or MOBO.
  21. Yea - I had not taken into consideration of a new Monitor (Im sick of my Current CRT).

    So, that added £150 to the final total. However, I decided that i would sell my current setup with it coming ontowards christmas and all, there will be someone who wants a new PC (Its actually a good gaming PC - Just not good enough for my standards ^^)

    So i will use the money from that to pay off any additional costs.

    Thanks for all your help aadamszc

    As a quick edit, with this system, I plan on using it for Crysis, CSS, COD2/4 and so on, Should i go with Vista, or stick with XP?

    I notice there are two versions of Vista too, x32, and x64, Should i go with Vista x64?
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