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Trying to put together a gaming PC for under $700, help!

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October 4, 2008 11:32:14 PM

Hi, I am helping my friend put together a gaming PC for under $700. We have picked out a potential setup but seeing as I am relatively new at the process of building a PC from scratch, I was hoping to get some advice from anyone on if this all looks compatible. Here are the parts:

ASUS M2N-E AM2 NVIDIA nForce 570 Ultra MCP ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ Windsor 3.0GHz Socket AM2 125W Dual-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS Radeon HD 4850
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Rosewill RP550V2-D-SL 550W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Seagate ST3640323AS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

LG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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October 4, 2008 11:37:06 PM

With a pc at about that level id say cut the 4850 back to an 8800, and with the extra money get a p35 mobo and intel duo (e4600, prefrably)
October 5, 2008 12:28:15 AM

For exactly the same price instead of the 125W 6000+ @ 3.0Ghz you could also consider the 89W 6000+ @ 3.1Ghz.

The older 125W model has 2Mb of L2 cache and the newer 89W chip only has 1Mb of cache, but the added 100Mhz of speed should make up for a lot of that difference.

See the 89W one here: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103272

(IF there will be overclocking involved... consider the 5400+ black edition at $77.00. Only 1Mb of cache @2.8Ghz but an unlocked multiplier to play with.)


ALSO::::
You should also consider spending $20.00 more on the MB and getting a newer AM2+ with the SB750 southbridge. (Brand new just released.)

It won't be useful NOW... but later on it would allow easily upgrading to a Phenom or Deneb after the prices go down. (With the mother board you linked... upgrading is not as guaranteed. Well nothing is ever guaranteed... but since this motherboard was recently released... it might get more future support.)

See this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813153116 (The equivalent ASUS would be $150.00.)

AND you get to use the AMD Overdrive utility with that motherboard. And you get to play with Fusion for Gaming also.

NOTE: For memory also look at http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231148 only $7.00 more for 4-4-4-12 instead of 5-5-5-15 speed.
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October 5, 2008 3:07:15 AM

This one will save you some money as it's less expensive. $159.99
$139.99 after mail in rebate.
SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
October 5, 2008 7:27:55 AM

jj463rd said:
This one will save you some money as it's less expensive. $159.99
$139.99 after mail in rebate.
SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


OH... much nicer looking heatsink. MOST 4850 cards have the stock AMD heatsink. The AMD stock heatsink WORKS if you have air flow in your case and drivers that aren't broken... but it is LOUD. I hate LOUD. (I chose to replace mine with Zalman VF-1000 coolers.)

The sapphire you point to looks like it would probably be cooler with lower fan speeds.

I highly recommend something with a better than stock heatsink.
October 5, 2008 9:25:22 AM

LOSE that mobo. It's old. It's AM2 - newer is AM2+ socket.
Am2+ runs faster HT3 and some other improvements, you don't want a slow AM2 socket.

Check this out, look at many extra goodies that come with. Also more upgrade options. Great oclockr through good bios. And is TDP rated for 140watts cpu. Any AMD cpu.

Dis Is Da Bomb! (or asus makes similar if you prefer asus)
You DO WANT SB750 southbridge !!!!
http://www.gigabyte.com.tw/Products/Motherboard/Product...

Also consider a triple core 8750 Black Edition- with the Giga board will oclok over 3ghz. And will use 1066mhz or 800 ram. Also opens up AOD & ACC.

I also recommend you boost that PSU to 600.

For the 4850, the latest Catalyst driver 8.10 has fanspeed adjustment.

Exhaust fan - flow some air.
October 5, 2008 5:20:36 PM

Thanks everyone, based on your imput and trying to balance price and quality I came out with this as a revised setup. Any other suggestions are greatly appreciated. I'm right at my price ceiling now, but if there's any changes that won't increase the price I'd definately consider it. Thanks again!

GIGABYTE GA-MA790GP-DS4H AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ 3.1GHz Socket AM2 89W Dual-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Rosewill RP600V2-S-SL 600W ATX12V v2.01 SLI Ready Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

October 5, 2008 7:19:24 PM

I'm surprised no one has mentioned this yet, but for the same money you can put together a C2D system which would be faster and cooler running.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-DS3L - $90 after rebate

OR (if you need RAID + Firewire)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-DS3R - $110 after rebate

matched with the following CPUs:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Intel Core 2 Duo E7200 2.53GHz 3MB L2 Cache - $119

OR (to save a few bucks)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Intel Pentium E5200 Wolfdale 2.5GHz 2MB L2 Cache - $84

Theres not much difference between the E7200 and E5200 except for the L2 cache size. Both these chips will run faster and cooler than the X2 6000+, and overclocks better (around 3.6 - 4.0GHz) if you're looking to get some free performance.

Here's some gaming benchmarks comparing the E7200 to the X2 6000+:
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core2duo-e...
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October 5, 2008 7:25:36 PM

Indeed Intel is a good choice too.Perhaps the OP is more comfortable about building an AMD system though.One thing I recommend about that Sapphire 4850 graphics card is to immediately download the latest drivers at AMD (ATI).The drivers on the CD is a beta version from what I remember (I have that graphic card and it works well).
October 5, 2008 7:31:19 PM

jj463rd said:
Indeed Intel is a good choice too.Perhaps the OP is more comfortable about building an AMD system though.


Well if he is, he didn't state it, I can't read minds you know! :lol: 

So I'll just have to assume he is open to whatever is best for the price, regardless of brand. From a gamer to a fellow gamer, I've provided the advice in good faith, not to start another AMD vs Intel flamewar (not like this forum hasn't had enough already lately!).
a b à CPUs
October 5, 2008 7:36:40 PM

epsilon84 said:
Well if he is, he didn't state it, I can't read minds you know! :lol: 

So I'll just have to assume he is open to whatever is best for the price, regardless of brand. From a gamer to a fellow gamer, I've provided the advice in good faith, not to start another AMD vs Intel flamewar (not like this forum hasn't had enough already lately!).

Agreed you did give good advise.Thank you.Myself I may opt for a Core i7 in 2009 perhaps the 3.2 Ghz one (because I have a lot of money and it's pocket change).
!