Weeks of research culminate to this ($1300 gaming build)

Ok so the last time I built a gaming comp was back when the Geforce 6600 was bleeding edge. Now trying to run games on my 2.0ghz AMD, 512 ram and the 6600 just isn't cutting it so its time to upgrade.

This machines primary purpose is to run games well. I don't play Crysis or CoH or any of the other demanding games, but I do enjoy having enough power to run the games I do play flawlessly (AoC, Spore, WAR).

A lot has changed but based on my research this is what I've come up with...

**THE SHORT LIST**
E8400
ASUS P5Q Pro <-- never planning to Xfire
HD4870
4G Corsair XMS2
WD 640G
Corsair 650TX
Acer 22" WS
Antec 900
Vista Home Premium 64bit
Xigmatec 120mm Rifle (plus bracket)
SATA DVD
Logitech keyboard and mouse
$1400 after tax and shipping
$1300 after rebates

**THE LONG LIST**

CPU
Intel E8400 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115037
The 7200 can reach comparable speeds with aggressive OCing, but I don't want to rely on that. The extent of my OCing will be nominal at best.
$170

MOBO
ASUS P5Q Pro http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131299
I've always favored the single-card upgrade path, so I have no desire to Xfire and therefore the x8 link for Xfire is fine. I feel that P45 is a solid chipset for my application.
$120

**NOTE** There's a pretty sweet combo deal on newegg for those two at a -$35 discount

VIDEO CARD
VisionTek HD4870 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814129113
I've been an Nvida fanboy in the past, but I can't argue with the price : performance ratio. The 4870X is too much for my budget, and the 4850 is too little for my desires, so I feel this is the sweet spot. Lots of 5 star reviews.
$280

MEMORY
Corsair XMS2 4G http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145194
OR
Mushkin 4G http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820146726
4G is what I want, both have relatively low voltage (2.1), both have great reviews and both have 4-4-4-12 timings. The Corsair has a killer price of $58 after rebate, but it looks a bit ostentatious for my taste, which is why I have the Mushkin listed. But for $37 more I could be on my way to a second set of the Corsair, not to mention the Mushkin in my current rig has been giving me trouble.
$93 or $114

HARD DRIVE http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218
WD 640GB
The AAKS series HD's are total speed demons, and I originally planned on the 320GB version, but the extra $20 for twice the space won me over. My only hangup is the low 16MB cache, I really would have preferred 32MB for this big of a drive.
$85

POWER SUPPLY http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005
Corsair 650TX
Great brand, reliable, single 12v rail, and enough juice to power my 4870 and hopefully the next few hungry cards to come. Wish it was modular, but you can't win them all.
$110

MONITOR
Acer 22" Widescreen http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824009094
Good price and lots of good reviews. This will be a very fun upgrade from my 19" square.
$195

CASE
Antec 900
Purchased this a while ago, been waiting to use it. I think it looks neat and I'm planning on a whole black + blue LED theme (which is why the Corsair memory drives me nuts).

*OTHERS*
COOLING: Xigmatec 120mm Rifle (plus retention bracket) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233003
Should be enough to keep things cool if I decide to OC.
$37+$7
DVD DRIVE: LG SATA http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136149
Cheap, SATA, good reviews.
$21
INPUT DEVICES: Logitech G11 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823126009 and Logitech MX518 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16826104178.
I love Logitech. Pricey, but good reviews on both.
$59+$40
OS: Windows Vista Home Premium 64bit http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116488
Gonna take the plunge into Vista, DX10 is just too tempting.
*OTHER OTHERS*
Thermal compound, mousepads, cool case lighting, etc.
~$40

GRAND TOTAL
$1400 after tax and shipping
$1300 after rebates

I was hoping on a $1200 out-the-door system, but I don't think there's anything I'm willing to budge on. Any suggestions? Any grave errors?

Thanks,
magonoo77
6
answers
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More about weeks research culminate 1300 gaming build
  1. Looks very good, I wouldn't get the MX518 though, it's quite an old (also optical) mouse, you can get for the same price newer laser mice.

    RAZER DeathAdder RZ01-00150100-R2M1 Black 5 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Optical 1800 dpi High Precision Gaming Mouse - Retail

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16826153007

    RAZER Diamondback 3G Earth Green 7 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB 3G infrared 1800 dpi Gaming Mouse - Retail

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16826153028

    Newegg has a typo on the DeathAdder and Diamondback 3G, it's not an optical mouse, it's a laser mouse (you can check on Razer's website). This most likely happened because whoever added this product probably didn't know the difference between laser and optical sensors.

    You might need thermal paste and a CPU cooler if you plan on overclocking (You'll need the thermal paste even if you don't), I'll recommend my favorites:

    Arctic Silver Ceramique Thermal Compound - OEM

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100009

    ZEROtherm Nirvana NV120 120mm 2-ball UFO Bearing / Transparent CPU Cooler - Retail

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835887011
  2. Here is a 640gb seagate HD which is the same price as the WD, yet this has the 32mb cache you were looking for.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148335

    Also go with this Mushkin ram, runs 1.8v so its very overclockable, and its pretty cheap after MIR.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820146731
  3. Also, that Acer is ok, but it's contrast ratio isn't that great at only 700:1, this one's much nicer at 2500:1, much richer blacks for only a few bucks more.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824009138
  4. awesome thanks for the input guys. i actually dont know the difference between an optical an laser mouse. im assuming laser is more accurate?
  5. Short answer is yes. Laser is newer tech. (You can easily tell which is which because if you lift your mouse you won't see a beam or a tracking red light of any kind if it's laser.)
  6. A laser is a type of optical mouse. Instead of an LED, it uses an infrared laser diode. Slightly better power usage, and higher resolutions.
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