First time builder could use some advice.

Hello everyone! I'm pretty new to this place, but a lot of my friends and people who have been helping me with choosing parts have linked me to this place, so I'd thought I'd post my list for some final revisions before buying the parts. First of all, I'm trying to build a gaming system that will hopefully cost me under 1000 for the tower. I'm extremely new to building my own system, as the only thing I've ever done to a PC is putting RAM in. But I am lucky enough to have a good friend who is pretty experienced in this whole thing, so he's going to be helping me out. I'd like to learn how to build a PC, because I think it's a great skill to know and it saves you a ton of cash and you get a PC that's going to kick ass and take names for like, half the price of a expensive gaming computer from Dell or whatnot.

So, lets get onto the point. My current setup is right here.


Now, feel free to tell me to change everything, but I also have some general questions about the parts and decisions...

I do like the look of that case, but while reading the topics of other people on $1000 builds, I've seen some people say that raidmax cases suck, and if so, I don't want that. So...if possible, give me some suggestions or brand names? I really do like the look of cooler master cases, but since I'm very new I don't know whats good/bad.

The second question is what processor should I go with. I've been told that the E8400 is currently better than the Q6600, but I also heard that the Q6600 is a better investment for the future. For like, $20 more, I find that a good investment if it's going to someday in the near future beat the E8400, but then again, I've been living on a P4's for the past couple of years so I'm sure the E8400 would be fine for me. :P

The third question is the graphics card. I really want to get into some more modern day games. One that's caught my attention is Age of Conan, would the 8800GT be able to play age of Conan in full DX settings with everything (even AA) maxed out at a decent framerate? I'm a huge Guild wars fan, so I have a feeling that the Guild Wars 2 requirements will be about the same as AoC? Would upgrading to the 8800GTS give me a big boost in performance for the extra money? This is the confusing thing for me, because I know nothing about graphics cards.

Anyways, I think thats enough questions for now, and sorry if I sound like a major noob. Can't wait to get some expert advice so I can get thing thing ordered soon after graduation. Going to have a great summer with this PC I hope. :) So make any suggestions, and lets try to keep the price below $1000 (still have a monitor to buy, but I think I'll get the 20' acer from Wal-mart. I have a $30 giftcard I need to use, and a lot of my friends have acer monitors that are really nice)
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  1. I'd go with a GTS 512 GPU instead of the 8800GT. Better performance and it's cheaper.
    The Antec BP (basic plus) isn't the PSU i'd go with. The Corsair 650 is the same price as the 550 after rebate right now at NewEgg
    Budget wise a is also a decent unit.
    HD for about $20 more
  2. Yeah that MSI 8800GTS is a better deal than the EVGA 8800GT ... but if i were you i'd really wait for the Radeon 4850 (Supposed to be priced about $220). Its bound to outperform the Conan would be easier to tame.

    You get the Seagate 7200.11 500gb for $85 at ..... also you get Corsair 550VX for $70 at

    Regarding E8400 vs Q6600, there have been a number of fist fights, kicks, slaps, rants, shenanigans, curses, jinxes and sorts in forums.... E8400 does perform better for gaming and almost all other apps... but then in say three years time there would be apps and games that make use of the Quad... but in three years time there would be a totally different mainstream CPU architecture and both E8400 and Q6600 would lie in a can catching dust.... so go for the E8400.
  3. Ok, made some of the changes, and should I change the case or would be a fine case?

    Also, the RAM I picked up is only cheap til the 31'st, and I don't think I'll be able to order til the first week of June, should I go with this G.skill ram?
  4. Quote:
    From OP's wishlist:

    EVGA 512MB Supper clocked
    Seagate 250GB
    Antec 550W
    OCZ Reaper 2*2GB
    Freezer 7 Pro

    Looks good :).

    Here are some changes that I personally would make:
    Corsair 450VX (better quality imo) for $60 after MIR:

    Xigmatek HDT-S1283
    $10 more but really worth it.

    If you plan to OC checkout:
    GUIDE: Overclocking On P35-DS3L
    Feel free to PM me if you run into trouble OCing.
  5. Thanks, that heatsink looks like a monster, I'll double check to make sure it fits in the case. :P
  6. ^Why do you have both the Freezer 7 and the XIGMATEK in the wish list?
  7. Wishlist was messed up, should be fixed now. Oh, and does that heatsink come with thermal paste applied already, or do I need to buy some.
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