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VERY close to $750 for a nice gaming rig help?

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August 18, 2008 6:37:27 PM

Well looks like Empire Earth III for my dad's computer can't run at lowest settings and all, BUT if he wanted to get a new GPU he would need a new mobo, than psu, than diffrent CPU, and on and on ;-)

SOOOO

I am here to save his day (been like 3 so far heh) and find a cheaper gaming computer ex the monitor mouse and keyboard so he doesn't get ripped off for the umpteenth time but not a crap hole dell that you can't upgrade and somehow gets goood reviews even if its noisy and sucks... overall.

Well after many days of comparing and asking on this forum and others I think I have it down EXTREMELY CLOSE
the only problem is that replies and getting back to people seem to be rather slow so bare with me in this and pitch in some for... a few free post counts higher? lol.

I need it to be very closet to 750 after all the taxes rebates etc. Also I would like to be able to upgrade it if need be in 2-3 years for more ram, CPU, or 2 video cards?

Here goes the build:

http://crucial.com/store/mpartspecs.aspx?mtbpoid=EA5977...
- I don't like newegg for ram idk y it just seems to be harder to find and get deals and complete the MIR with some things... So its an easier sulotion

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
- is that a good one that is fairly cheap and big enough for lots of stuff without having overheating problems?

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

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-would work, be compatible, have enough room to fit everthing and stuff?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-I am also getting this for MY computer which has a little bit on the slow side CPU, this seems like a GREAT deal and a VERY fast card for a whooping 125 dollars :o 

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-maybe an overkill but would provide new updates at least!

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-better for gaming than a quad if I need to help him overclock it, very cheap compared to what I thought things like this would cost (thought it would be at least 300 dollars =])

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-if he need more somehow I can just find a cheap one and slap it in there he he...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
NOTE!: unless I can switch the old HDD or find the other windows xp disc I am going to have to get these last two (not too much of a problem but it still is like 1/5 the cost of the computer)

I need all of this to be checked to make sure its compatible because I just am not super great on this stuff, I have an anti-static wrist strap because I installed a new video card and psu before but that is about it. THE FIRST RIG home made so I really can't say I am an expert but at least I learned more about the computer (always my goal #....5?).

So in comparison it needs to be able to run COD4 or equivalent at a medium wide screen display (like 1400x1000 or something?) and have it run smoothly at 40 fps or so? at almost max settings except maybe anti aliasing or something...

I really want to impress him with my knowledge and show him that he doesn't have to pay 1,500 AGAIN for the 5th time in a row to get a decent computer that works. Just need it to be fairly quite, not really hot, fast, smooth, and fit 08 games need for video cards and power.

I am pretty sure this would work.

IF you think I should definitely change something please don't make it cost more unless I need to change two things and they are better like a motherboard that costs less with a CPU that costs more.

If I can get this approved for the standards I am asking for and the budget I would be forever grateful and would send you it... I mean send you an imaginary hug =].



~The man with the master plan ;) 



August 18, 2008 6:46:02 PM

Power supply is overkill, if you want to cut it down in price, get the Sonata 3 that comes bundled with the EA500. Get the 4850 instead of the card you listed.
August 18, 2008 6:54:49 PM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
-This isn't too much more he said he wanted vista I told him it had too many bugs however I know he likes a little more ease of use than xp and this is like his mac a little bit more, it is also 64-bit which is a huge plus for me if I ever need to use it :D 

Shadowthor: The powersupply and all the components are ment to last atleast 2 years and than If I need to replace things the last I would like to replace is the PSU as I feel that is just too much to upgrade every 2 years and isn't worth a computer possilby :o  and WHY THE 4850?! The card I listed is fine unless he needs more power in a few years in which case I could find another cheap video card that is better and will last for 2 years or so I don't see why a 4850 instead of a 4870??

also: if it is because of somehting like stream processors, well 50mhz is better than like 100 more of those isn't it? I really think that the card I chose is great

new question: if the power supply is really too much could it actually DAMAGE the computer?

Related resources
August 18, 2008 7:00:31 PM

I managed to do this in canada for my friend so i think you can do the same/better at newegg.

e7200
gigabyte ep35-ds3l
4850
ocz stealthxstream 500w
antec three hundred
4gb g.skill 4-4-4-12
seagate barracuda 250gb 16mb cache
arctic freezer 7 pro + arctic silver 5
August 18, 2008 7:05:43 PM

too much power is not an issue. it is about price. having more power than you need won't harm anything. but when you are doing a computer for $750 typically you want to really maximize cost vs. performance. so spending more than you need in one area really means you are losing out in another.

now that being said that is a nice power supply and should provide room for future upgrading. it is just a matter of wanting to spend almost 20% of your budget on that.
August 18, 2008 7:06:51 PM

lets see

GPU 4850 cant go wrong 150.00

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

For case sonata III is a good choce with a great PSU both for 100.00

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

HD a OAK 640 has the best bang for the buck 85.00

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

The MoBo, P35 is a great ocer with a cheep price tag 85.00

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

Ram 4 gigs for 80.00 is not a bad deal

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

CPU i would go with a E8400 for 170. but a E7200 mite be all that you need for around 120.00

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

and OS a 64 bit is the way to go for 110. why not

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

so that brings us to 780. with the E8400 and 720. with a E7200 both solid ocing and gaming specs
August 18, 2008 7:12:06 PM

+1 for houston

you can replace the case and psu by antec three hundred and ocz stealthxstream for almost the same price if you want.
August 18, 2008 7:19:17 PM

The 4850 is a better performing graphics card than the 3870, an offers a better bang for the buck. I'm not sure how graphics intensive Empire Earth 3 will be ( since it's a RTS the CPU will play a more influential role in performance than in most genres), but it really doesn't make sense to go with a last-gen card when the 4850 offers superior bang for the buck.

I know you're trying to keep the budget down, but you may want to consider getting 4 gig of ram. you can get 2x2 GB stick sets for around $80 on Newegg, and prices are dropping everyday. 2 GB should suffice for most tasks, but there have been cases when I'm gaming that my computer will use up over 3 gig, and I'm only gaming at 1600x1050. People say that Vista will be generous and give up some of the RAM it's using if the computer needs it for other processes, but I can't confirm this.

As was mentioned before, I'd step down the PSU. Neither the 3870 or the 4850 require a lot of power, and your processor is too power hungry so you should be quite safe going with a quality 500W PSU and still have room to spare!

To cut costs further, look for product combos on Newegg. Lots of products will bundle PSUs for a $10 or $20 savings, and you might be able to find a combo with Vista 64-bit to save a few more bucks. Never hurts to look!
August 18, 2008 7:43:54 PM

you must get a HD4850, no question. easily out performs the one you got there for just a little bit more $$.
August 18, 2008 7:56:12 PM

I think you could do better than that Radeon 3870. However if you are stuck at your price range of around 130ish, try looking at the 8800gt because it's price has dropped so much now and it performs better. I found some on newegg that are equal or less than the price of that current card you listed.

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

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

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

But if you can spend more +1 for the 4850

Good luck
August 18, 2008 8:01:13 PM

+1 to the 4850
August 18, 2008 8:41:25 PM

If somone could post the stats of that psu and case and double check my list to make sure everything fits and works together that'd be great. I heard a single rail psu is the best overall and I guess I don't really need more than about 600w even if I plan to upgrade these devices
August 18, 2008 8:51:10 PM

currently the rig is now 800 with a 610w psu I bet my dad wouldn't mind paying an extra 50 bucks (as he is a doctor he probably makes atleast 50 dollars in an hour :o )

I have a 3.2ghz 2.5gb ram windows xp and psu that is the same 610w as on the list from pc power cooler... And is there a card about as good as the 4850 that cost more like 110-125 maybe?
like lets say this would run cod4 on this pc on 1280.1024 at like lots of high settings and good frame rate?

its superclocked so does that make it last less long...? or would that 3870 at the top of this page be a better idea?
August 18, 2008 9:46:02 PM

Ty zenmaster!

Good reviews for PSU and great airflow with a quiet rating... Brings the price down alot and just a little bit less wattage but also multiple rails... Oh well it will still suffice (the psu) for at least 2 years :D 

I'm assuming after two years some things may need another upgrade :

psu, video card (maybe), and CPU if needed or may need to OC.

That will be around 200-250 dollars in 2 years which is fine. But than I will need to make new computer to replace this one probably XD
August 18, 2008 9:48:03 PM

go with the 4850. :)  :)  :) 
August 18, 2008 9:58:54 PM

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

This would need to run on a pci-e x16 mobo and the other stuff ^^^^ about this computer So it would be bottle-necked but this is as close as the amount of money I CAN spend on a new video card :(  Saved up for a year and then new computer stuff becuz I can't play a game on ok settings blew it to pennies :< so this is like the best I can do to a 4850 and I guess if its bottlenecked or w.e would OCing it help?

and somone please tell me if the gaming rig build for my dad is ok now? https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...
August 18, 2008 10:13:25 PM

Ok looks like the bulid in my wishlist is going to be it... I don't really want to put it together LOL...

and I also think that the card in the above (mine) post is gonna be what II get, turns out its PCI-e x16 not 2.0 :D  so no bottlenecking either. Great day great day.
August 18, 2008 10:36:28 PM

can't read the link to see your wishlist. but best of luck with your build.
August 18, 2008 10:55:55 PM
August 19, 2008 2:29:41 AM

Well today the 2 gb of ram for THIS computer came and installed nicely (only thing I don't get is when I went into setup or f2 at starting up it said 2 1024 or w.e mbs at x8 and there were 2 256mbs at x16??? Idk what that means but ok o.o). Also the anti static wrist and the PSU :D  all installed nicely and fairly easily (too many hook ups :>) So once I build dads computer I talked to him and he said if he gets it and lets me If he decides too he would get me an hd 4850 512mb 256 bit video card.

SO, I am thinking of maybe somehow getting all of this stuff to cost a WEEE bit less? I mean I can't really think of anything unless there is a cheaper vid card that is a better bang for buck (and not a 10 dollar 128mb lol) Becuase honesly the 4850 is probably a tad bit of an overkill as of now... and If he would need to upgrade in 2 years anyway 50 bucks can buy a day of vacation somewhere... ... ... so maybe a less expensive video card that is ALMOST as good but you know... cost less

Thank you just wanted to let you guys know how some installing here went I think I could build a computer just not sure about mounting a mobo (heard alot of problems about that becuase ppl didn't do it
right :o 


QUICK ESTIMATE shows that its currently $819 :/  cheaper mobo?, vid card?, ram or HDD possilby (sata for HDD please if so).
August 19, 2008 2:38:34 AM

i think you have made good choices. maybe you need to sit down and have a discussion with your dad. tell him his options between the 3870 and the 4850 and the information you have been given here. for the difference in price it is a very big leap forward, much more future proof and will allow him to do what ever he wants gaming at the resolution he has. then let him decide since it will be his computer. the people on here all recommend a little more for a great card but ultimately it isn't our computer you are building. I think if you have your facts, present them to him and let him make a reasonably informed decision then you have done your best. sorry for the novel but that's my 2 cents.
August 19, 2008 3:06:04 AM

;)  love novels and money XD Am already planning too at about 2:42 pm tommorow no jk. I think I will just have to allow him to get the 4850 as after I explain the diffrence he would get it if I didn't not say anything about a different card.

This is a large amount of money to be spent!

at first I just wanted to learn more about a computer and that was around the time I bought COD4 for this computer. WELL than I realized I need a huge update with multiple computers so I talked to him for around 2 days and found out that it would be better bang for the buck to NOW spend money to make a custom computer. I didn't even tell him that but made a plan and shaped it to what it has become. Turned out he would seriously consider doing it (hey its fun and its research learning and is something to do eh?).

So I thank all of you at toms hardware.com to just pitching in to peoples problems even though you could link them to some crappy dell build XD.
August 19, 2008 3:16:52 AM

best of luck.
!