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$1200 Budget Computer - Gaming-oriented

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Last response: in Systems
July 2, 2008 4:25:09 PM

Hey everyone :hello:  , putting together a new computer right now and I really need some advice. I'm trying to tweak it out to the best of my abilities. I'm on a sort of strict budget, and I'm trying to stay under $1200 but I might be willing to above it if the conditions are appealing. :D 

Oh, and I should mention, I don't need a HDD quite yet since I have a 250gb 7200rpm WD lying around.
Anyhow, here we go.

CPU - Core 2 Duo E6750 - $180 -
Avoiding the QuadCore for money reasons. Do I really need a quad core these days or will a good duo core do the job? Especially considering that I am mainly playing and doing random stuff in windows. What do you guys think?

PSU - Corsair 750W ATX12V - $130
750W should be enough for this computer and for many years to come, right?

Case - Antec 900 ATX Mid Tower - $120
I've heard so many good things about this case that I just decided to get it, it's worth the money I hear.

Video - Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit - $200
I've heard the new Radeon is good, what can I say? Cheap and excellent, is it too good to be true?

RAM - G.Skill 4GB (2x2GB) DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) - $90
I was considering getting the DDR2 1200 RAM but I don't know if it's really going to make a difference or not. If you know, please comment on this, I'm really unsure :D 

Mobo - ASUS P5Q - $150
This seems like an excellent affordable Mobo for xfire and it also supports everything else that I need.

Optical Drive - Pioneer 20X DVD burner - $31
I don't need anything fancy, just something that will get me by. This seems cheap and good enough.

Cooler - Artic Cooling, CPU cooler - $27
Saw this one adviced to someone else, seems good enough for me to, cheap too :D .

Monitor - Acer 22" - $219
I really do wanna go with a 24" but I can't seem to afford it. :'( .

This ends up being about $1150 which is good. But I'm really unsure about the CPU and the RAM (am I opting for something too cheap?). Otherwise I think it's okay, but I might be missing something really important.

Please advice!!! I'd really, really appreciate it.

Best Regards,

More about : 1200 budget computer gaming oriented

July 2, 2008 4:45:52 PM

Change the CPU to E8400 and the motherboard to GA-X48-DS4 or P5E Deluxe X48. The P5Q would bottleneck the HD 4870 in Crossfire mode, because it drops to x8 on both slots. You need an X38 or X48 motherboard for best results in Crossfire.

The rest is fine.

If you intend to overclock get a Xigmatek HDT-S1283.

If not, you can ditch the Freezer and use the stock cooler that comes with the E8400.

Check out the RC-690 case too. I'd personally prefer it to the Antec 900 because I don't like the lights. It's also cheaper and a little bigger.
July 2, 2008 4:59:05 PM

instead of the e6750... get a e8400... is 5 - 10 $ more.... and is better

I wouldn't get a monitor yet... you already have a monitor so deal with it until you can get a 24" one... I have one and its awesome...

with the money you saved you could either upgrade to a 4870 which will better help you at 1920x1200... or just flat out save 200 bucks

mobo is ok... I didn't check if it supports CF but you may want a board that does so you can CF them later

and although the cpu cooler is fine... for 10 dollars more you can get a xigametek s1283 or s1284.... which are better

July 2, 2008 5:18:04 PM

ditch the e6750 and get the e8400 its alot better chip which stays cooler and overclocks like a champ.
July 2, 2008 5:34:45 PM

Your list looks good,i would go up to the e8400 like the others said,and i would stick with the your p45 choice instead of the x48.Unless you plan to use crossfire its just not worth the extra money.

Edit: and +1 for aevm's suggestion on the Xigmatek +retention bracket,that cooler rocks.
July 2, 2008 5:52:07 PM

zore86 said:

RAM - G.Skill 4GB (2x2GB) DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) - $90
I was considering getting the DDR2 1200 RAM but I don't know if it's really going to make a difference or not. If you know, please comment on this, I'm really unsure :D 

Short answer, the RAM you selected is fine... in fact it looks like a pretty good deal!

To quote Tom's Hardware, "Our conclusion is very simple: you get the best bang for the buck if you stick to the mainstream of the memory market, which currently is still DDR2 -800 or 1066, preferably at low latencies. DDR3-1066 and -1333 memory do not yet result in better performance, and so should only be considered by hardcore enthusiasts, who aim for maximum overclocking performance knowing that they will get little benefit for spending a fortune." - From this article:,180...

Having "faster" ram wont matter in your "gaming" system, so long as it works with either the 6750 or e8400... and the DDR2-1066 you selected, will! As best I can tell, there's almost no change in performance from DDR2-800 to DDR2-1066 or DDR2-1200 when playing a game... or even with DDR3-1600. There are a few articles on RAM performance on here, and when when all else is equal, the increased speed of the ram doesn't affect FPS in a game.

The real need for faster ram is to support higher FSB and CPU speeds... but that doesn't factor into your decision at this point.

In my own benchmarks, I have have found no observable change in performance from having faster RAM or FSB, while maintaining a constant CPU speed. For example, if you increased the FSB and RAM frequency and decreased the CPU multiplier, then do another benchmark (much like what Tom did in those articles) you'd see no change in performance. This may change with the next generation of Intel chips, with their "doing away with" the FSB, but that remains to be seen.