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New Custom PC ~$500 budget

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Last response: in Systems
November 19, 2008 7:46:14 PM

*edit *

forgot this will mainly be a gaming machine for valve games (cs, left 4 dead, dod), and also some MMO (think he plays like shadowbane and WOW)

Helping a friend out he needs the following

Video Card/GPU

his old system shorted out...

he will be reusing:
Thermaltake armor series case
antec psu 550 or 650 watts

he wants mainly intel/nvidia setup....i am only familiar with amd from my personal builds and for the ones at the office we use amd 5000+ and ati visiontek 4850s....

can i get a decently priced intel system? i imagine its going to be a q6600 and like an asus p45 motherboard...

here is the current build i priced out...any thoughts or comments?

GIGABYTE GA-MA78GM-S2H AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+ Windsor 3.0GHz 2 x 1MB L2 Cache Socket AM2 89W Dual-Core Processor - Retail

ASUS ENGTX260 TOP/HTDI/896M GeForce GTX 260 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
Free Alone in the Dark Game w/ purchase, limited offer

$510.33 before $60 of MIR (keep in mind i have yet to get my MIR from corsair over 12 months)

this a decent build or can anyone recommend a better intel based one? hes not really trying to spend more than $500ish at the moment

More about : custom 500 budget

November 19, 2008 8:04:58 PM

Well, if you're going witn an nVidia card then you should consider an nVidia board such as


Since you can plug the monitor into the onboard video. The onboard graphics will be use when you're not doing anything too demanding, and then the 260 will take over when you play games. I think that for the budget though if you want to go with that AMD based board you should get a 1GB Radeon 4850.

HIS Hightech H485QS1GP Radeon HD 4850 1GB

Which will lower the cost of the build a bit
November 19, 2008 8:08:16 PM

Good set up. Good choice on GPU and RAM.

If willing to OC:
E5200 (easily OC to 3.4Ghz)
P45-DS3L/P5Q Pro
Related resources
November 19, 2008 8:34:49 PM

Here's what I would do.

Intel E 7200 = 119.99
check out the article tom's just did on the overclocking ability

Asus P5N-D = 134.99
has 2 pcie slots so can upgrade to SLI later

Video Card:
GTX 260 = 219.99 (this is a 24 hour special price but will still be less than 250 after) also purchasing from EVGA gets you far cry 2, 3dmark vantage advanced.

anything for less than 40$ after rebate is a good deal

This is just over 500 without shiping and no rebates necessary. Don't forget that you also get a $47 game for free as well as $20 3dmark vantage as well. If you're looking to cut some more corners, you could get away with a cheaper motherboard with an intel based chipset however you would need ati graphics to use crossfire. This was built based on your friends preference. along with limited upgrade capability (quadcore and sli)

Whoops, forgot a cooler in there for overclocking. Well my recommendation if money is tight is to stick with the stock cooler for now. You can get pretty far on that chip without increasing the voltage. As long as you don't up the voltage, the stock cooler should be fine for now. The case he has has good airflow anyways.
November 19, 2008 8:42:41 PM

Dont believe he is going to OC at first...i will mention that later if the need arise...

also edit to the top i added

forgot this will mainly be a gaming machine for valve games (cs, left 4 dead, dod), and also some MMO (think he plays like shadowbane and WOW)

and other games of the sort
November 19, 2008 8:57:38 PM

@OP: What res dose he plan to game at? If not above 1600*1200 then consider getting a 4850.
November 20, 2008 1:01:22 PM

he said he normally would at 1280 x 1024 on a 19 inch LCD
November 20, 2008 2:39:55 PM

anyone else have any recommendations?
November 20, 2008 8:09:15 PM

sweet that would help out thanks...

any body else?
November 20, 2008 8:51:12 PM

Seriously at 1280 x 1024 those GTX260s/4870,etc are way over kill. Imo, consider getting a 9800GT ($100 or so @ Newegg after MIR)and spending the savings on a new LCD or RAM,HDD,etc.
November 20, 2008 8:58:38 PM

well thats all he played at when he had his 5500 he may go larger...i just asked what his old specs were...

but thanks for the input ill suggest that to him as well
November 20, 2008 11:57:02 PM

^ What I wanted to know was the max resolution of the LCD. Usually on 19" it is 1440*900 or some thing like that.
November 21, 2008 2:40:21 AM

SWEEEEET with that Hidden MIR, that puts the price of the gtx 260 down to $180!!!!!! What a deal!!!! It won't last long since they are phasing out the regular 260 in favor of the core 216.