New Build for $1000... Here is what I came up with.

Hello everyone...

I am building my very first computer and I would like some advice with my build. I have always been into computers but recently purchased a macbook pro for college because I am into photo manipulation and videography.

Obviously this will not play games and I don't want to bring my xbox 360/wii with me to college, so I would like a 'modest' gaming rig used solely for gaming at the $1000 range. A little less would be good but I always get excited when buying things and I usually go over budget. I plan to either get the new Dell 2408 monitor or a Dell 20" to go with the system.

As mentioned I am building this myself and I have never done this before... so are there any websites or books that give step by step instructions on the building a computer process? Any information would be great, thank you.

Anyways... here is my planned build so far:

Case: Antec Steel Midtower
PSU: Corsair 520W
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-P35
CPU: Intel E8400 3.0
Memory: G.Skill 8gb (4x2gb) @ 800
Graphics Card: EVGA 8800GTS 512mb
Harddrive: Seagate 320gb
Optical Drive: Pioneer
OS: Vista home premium 64bit oem

That totals up to about $1070 + tax and shipping bought directly from Newegg. I will probably buy my set up in a month or so... plenty of time to switch components with your recommendations. Also, the prices will probably go down a bit.

Here is a list of questions:
Will that case fit everything that I chose with room the spare?
Will all the components work together in an optimal way?
Since this computer is only for gaming... Vista 64bit safe bet.. or should I go XP?
Any other wires/connections/etc that I will need to build the computer?

Thanks for reviewing my new custom computer everyone and please throw up any recommendations as I pretty much just followed the OP's advice on the components. Any upgrades or downgrades ideas... let me know.

Great forum!
8 answers Last reply
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  1. Get DDR2 800 instead.

    Excellent power supply choice and video card choice.

    You might have to flash your BIOS with another LGA775 processor for the E8400 to work but more and more GA-P35's are shipping with more recent BIOS so you don't have to.

    Trust me you want vista home premium, not vista home basic. I didn't click the link so I dunno which one you have selected.
  2. If your going with 64 bit windows i would double your ram . And home premium is better . Personally i would get the 8800gtx vid card instead of gts .
  3. Oooop[s forgot some things . Boonality is right about getting ddr2 800 unless you plan to extremely overclock your system . Dell monitors are good along with gateway . just did a review on 24"lcd monitors that you may want to check out .
    Good Luck
  4. Thanks for the great comments.

    Boon - I read that the Mobo I chose was the best if you were not going SLI, but I am a little worried about installing Bios as I am new to all of this. What are the benefits of the LGA...easier to install... more future proof? I don't plan to overclock at first because I'm just hoping to get it to work and when I do overclock, I don't need to bring my system to extremes.

    Also, regarding Vist home premium, do I want SP1 or not? SP1 is $109 and Vista Home premium is $100.

    With Ram, How about this:8gb (4 x2gb) G.Skill 800

    Smotman- why a different graphics card? I have been told that the 8800 gts 512 is the best for the money. Keep in mind this is the new 512mb version not the earlier versions. I have been told that the only thing better then this is the 9800gtx which is $50 more. I could buy that if anyone thought it was worth the extra money.

    Is my harddrive sufficient? Thanks for the replies and keep them coming :sol:
  5. I said that i would change the video card out of my preference , It has more ram and is a better card .If your not going to sli i would get the best card you can afford .As far as hard drives go for the seagate 7200.11 , I hear theyre the best bang for the buck
  6. I ordered Vista Home Premium 64 from Zipzoom fly. They included the SP1 disc together with the order for $99.
  7. Alright, I really appreciate the comments. I have been reading a lot of information in the last couple days.

    If you guyz could bear with me a bit more, I have a few new questions now.

    FYI, I would like to overclock my system so I can get more than I paid for (gotta love it) so I am told I should be careful about heat. Should I get a heat sink? Any suggestions?

    Here is what I like:

    Case- It may be more expensive then I need, but I think it looks pretty sweet and I didn't want anything flashy anyways.
    Graphics Card- Tom reassured me in his new article that the 8800gts 512mb is the best right now for the money.
    Hard Drive
    Optical Drive

    Here are some things I am not sure about...

    CPU: I am feeling that the Q6600 quad or Q9300 would be the best for me since I'd like to use this computer for a good while and they are more clockable than the e8400... true? The q9300 costs $90 more and uses the Pernyn 45nm processor which another reviewer recommended as an alternative to the q6600. For a pure gaming computer lasting 2+ years, which CPU is best?

    Motherboard I originally thought the GA-P35-DS37... now everyone is saying to upgrade to the GA-EX38-DS4 because the p35ds37 will be bottlenecked. I'd like to overclock a bit (even though I have not done it before) but I read about how to do it and it looks fairly doable.

    PSU I prefer the HX Corsair series because of the modular cabling support... its supposed to be easier and cleaner and that sounds good to me. I picked out the 520HX as I think it is good for my system... but should I just go for the 620HX to keep my system future proof?

    Thanks for the great comments and this awesome forum :) I am hoping to finalize my build and order it within the next week. Anything other suggestions would be great... definitely trying to keep the prices down but I am willing to spend a little bit more for components that will make a difference. Thanks!
  8. For some reason, your links are not working for me.
    Everything looks ok, though, it is a reasonably balanced system.
    What is the case?
    Good PSU.
    Any of the Gigabyte P35 mobo's are good. DS3L is cheaper if it has the features you need. Go to the Gigabyte web site to do a side by side comparison of what is included in each mobo.

    P35 motherboards are now mature and relatively trouble free. Only if you are a high overclocker enthusiast would a X38 or such be appropriate.

    The E8400 will be more than enough. Few games can make use of more than two cores, so I'll take the increased clock speed. You will not notice much increase from overclocking. For gaming, you will do better spending more on the vga card than the cpu. Only if you are a heavy multitasker would a quad be better.
    I would get an oem heat sink. It will be quieter and cooler under load, even if you do not overclock. Look for one with a 120mm fan that directs the hot air out the back of the case. Nehalem cpu's will be with us in a year so any " future-proofing" will go by the wayside. Get what you want now.

    I like the 8800GTS-512. It has a superior stock cooler, and is a good value. If you are looking at high end gaming, wait a couple of months for the new vga card announcements. The EVGA step up program will preserve your upgrade options for 90 days..

    DDR2-800 memory is cheap, so get a bunch. 4gb is enough unless you do lots of multitasking. I installed 8gb, and it works fine, but it may limit your overclocking capability.

    Shopping tips for Vista:
    1) Do you qualify for an academic license?
    If so, you can get Vista at a discounted price.
    2) Look for an upgrade version of home premium instead of OEM.
    Upgrade is a retail version which gives you support from microsoft, unlike OEM,
    and allows a more hassel-free ability to transfer the os to a different pc(motherboard).
    For $10, microsoft will send you the 64 bit DVD.
    I saw Vista home premium upgrade recently at Costco for $85, amazon for $89.
    There is a legitimate two step instalation process to install an upgrade version
    You install vista from the cd, but do not initially enter the product code.

    just tell the install which version you bought, and do not activate.
    After it installs, you have a fully functional vista for 30 days.
    Step 2 is to insert the cd again, while running vista and then do an upgrade.
    This time, enter your product code, and activate.
    After activation. you may delete the initial version which is named windows.old.

    If you get a retail or upgrade version, you will still be able to upgrade to ultimate later.

    I can't talk about the pioneer dvd, but Samsung 203 has been good for me, and is cheap.

    ---good luck---
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