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Under Budget Gamin PC

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January 11, 2009 7:52:53 PM

hi guys, first thing first...GLAD TO JOIN THE COMMUNITY!!!
ok, so this is the very first time i'm doing anything like this...was originally gonna customize a computer from cyberpowerpc.com, but after readin all the negative reviews about their tech. support, and what not...i opted out to putting together my own rig.

so this is what i'm plannin on putting together...THE ONLY PROBLEM is that its a bit over my budget ($1500) so if anyone can help me cut something down...and also, i need to know if the case will fit the motherboard, and i also wanted a good AIR COOLING (either cooler master, or thermaltake), but don't know which one would fit the case...neways here's the list of what i wanna put in it...

SAMSUNG 22X DVD±R -
Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 500GB -
Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound -
G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB) -
Intel Core i7 920 -
Cooler Master HAP 932 -
EVGA 132-BL-E758-A1 MOBO -
EVGA GeForce 9800 GTX + - 512MB DDR3 -
Ultra X3 1000W PSU -
Logitech Wave Keyboard -
Logitech MX518 Gaming Grade Optical Mouse -

TOTAL (WITH SHIPPING) - $1576

so this is where is stand, and i still need to add air cooling...ANY SUGGESTIONS?

thanks,
Dr. P! ;) 

More about : budget gamin

January 11, 2009 8:03:05 PM

You could try something based on Q9550 ($320 at newegg), GA-EP45-UD3R ($105), HD 4870 X2 ($400), PC Power & Cooling 750W ($80), G.Skill DDR2-800 2x2GB ($50). It would cost less and it would be twice as good in games.
January 11, 2009 8:06:22 PM

Cooling: if you follow my advice and get the Q9550 (or E8500, btw, just as good for gaming and cheaper), then Xigmatek HDT-S1283 would do the job nicely. For the i7, I like the Noctua NH-U12P ($70 at www.frozencpu.com).

Edit your original post and take your real name out. It's really a bad idea to write it on a forum.

Related resources
January 11, 2009 8:07:30 PM

thank you, but i really wanted to keep the i7 CPU...so anything with that in mind?
January 11, 2009 8:24:23 PM

I actually agree with aevm on the i7 comment. I mean it's nice and all, but I'm betting if you go with the older socket, you could get older higher end stuff and overclock, then have as good if not better performance than the i7 chip.

However, drop the ultra power supply I think. Don't get me wrong, I like Ultra products myself. But 200 bucks for that system I think you are overkilling on the power supply.

Maybe drop to something in this neighborhood.
January 11, 2009 8:27:17 PM

Well, you could replace the case with a RC-690 and save about $80.

The 1000W PSU is only necessary if you intend to have three 9800GTX+ cards. For one or two the PC Power & Cooling 750W is enough. No idea how much the Ultra X3 1000W would cost you but I'm guessing more than $80.


You can always get a cheaper mouse and a cheaper keyboard, and upgrade later when you can and if you need to.

You don't need to buy an after market cooler for the i7 920. YOu can do it later when/if you decide to overclock.

I'd upgrade the HDD to a 640GB version. Those are among the fastest 7200 rpm disks available these days. The WD6401AALS in particular is very good.

January 11, 2009 8:41:33 PM

With switching the psu to the pc power and cooling and case to the RC-690 you could upgrade your gpu to a GTX 260 or 4870 and still be under budget.
January 11, 2009 9:18:01 PM

thank you for all the replies...the reason y i picked the 1000W PSU was because, maybe a month or two down the road, i'm def. gonna get another video card if not two...so might as well spend the money now on the 1000W so i dont have reconnect all the wires, and buy a bigger PSU later on.

as far as getting a quad core CPU, and overclocking it is concerned...well i'm not really good with computers, and like i mention this is the first time that im doin anything like this...so i have no experience with overclocking anything, plus i've heard that overclockin is bad, and it'll shorten the life of my computer.
January 11, 2009 11:03:22 PM

You should probably SLI GTX 280. Buy one now, then buy another later. Tri-way SLI scaling is not pretty nor worth the money. Of course, NVIDIA will prove me wrong when newer drivers are released. So Tri-way SLI scaling will improve greatly over time. But, keep in mind that your performance will depend a lot on how well-written the drivers are.
January 11, 2009 11:47:27 PM

so i went ahead, and made changes according to you guys...this is wat the updated version looks like...

EVGA GeForce GTX 280 - $324.99 @ Tigerdirect
Intel DP45SG MOBO - $149.99 + $25 for 1 year warrenty @ Tigerdirect
Intel Q9550 w/ FREE FarCry 2 - $309.99 @ Tigerdirect
Ultra X3 ULT40064 1000-Watt PSU - $199.98 + $30 1 year warrenty @ Tigerdirect
Logitech Wave Keyboard - $49.99 @ Tigerdirect
SAMSUNG 22X DVD±R - $22.99 @ Newegg
COOLER MASTER HAF - $159.99 @ Newegg
WD6401AALS 640GB - $79.99 @ Newegg
Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound - $5.99 @ Newegg
CORSAIR DOMINATOR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 - $109.00 @ Newegg

TOTAL w/ Shipping $1505 (minus the rebates which are around $50-$75)

is that good now?
January 11, 2009 11:59:46 PM

Still wrong, sorry. That case and PSU will allow you to add a second GTX 280, but the motherboard won't. If you want GTX 280 SLI you need a SLI motherboard. I don't usually recommend that because those MBs tend to be flaky and expensive.

There are some options that can give you lots of graphics power while still using a MB with an Intel chipset:
P45 (any) + GTX 295 or HD 4870 X2
P45 MB with Crossfire + two HD 4870 1GB cards
X48 MB + two HD 4870 1GB cards (better, but more expensive)
X58 MB + DDR3+ i7 920 + two GTX 280 (best, but way too expensive for my taste)

For example the motherboard you have picked would make sense with a HD 4870 1GB card, because then you'd be able to add a second card in Crossfire. It's a Crossfire board, not SLI, i.e. only ATI cards work on it in multi-GPU setups.

January 12, 2009 1:22:58 AM

ok so i guess i'll keep the MOBO cuz its fairly cheap and i'll go with the 4870 1gb card.
other then that, everything was ok right? and keep the 1000W PSU for future 48701gb card so i can run crossfire?

thanks for ur help!
January 12, 2009 1:39:14 AM

ok so this is what i bought...

SAPPHIRE 100259-1GL Radeon HD 4870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 w/ 1 year extended warrenty for $35. and the card itself was $240.

ANOTHER thing i wanted to know is, the ddr2 memory that i have costs me $109 for 4gb. i saw on newegg...G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 which is also dual channel for just $55. Should i get 8gb of this memory, or stick with what i have???

plz help, so i can order the parts before the prices go up.
thanks to everyone who is trying to help!

oh and i forgot to ask...the PSU says its SLI ready, so does that mean, it'll also work in crossfire when i do it later on (ATI?)
January 12, 2009 1:54:44 AM

This G.Skill DDR2-800 is only $50 and has great timings.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231209

If you're only playing games, 4 GB is probably enough. You decide. Read this first.
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2008/07/08/is-more-memory-better/1
If you're also using the PC for work, 8 GB may be very useful. It depends on what kind of work.

You should use Vista 64-bit to get Direct X 10 and full access to the 4 GB or 8 GB of RAM. If you have a 32-bit system, there's absolutely no point in getting 8 GB.


"SLI ready" means it has lots of PCI-E connectors. "Crossfire ready" means the same thing. No worries there. BTW, that PC Power & Cooling 750W I mentioned can also handle two HD 4870 cards all right.
January 12, 2009 2:12:04 AM

that's perfect, it'll save me good $80. thanks for the tip. and yea i do have windows vista ultimate 64-bit so i should be okay there.

i guess i'll get all these parts...and with the saved money i'll get the coolermaster cooler its $60 might as well. the cooler that u suggested is a bit cheaper but i read the reviews and it said it was a bit harder to install, so i'll spend some extra cash and get the coolermaster w/ 8gb of memory.

NEXT STEP would be the installation...but i'll bug all of you once i get my stuff in :) 

thanks sooo much!
January 12, 2009 2:17:52 AM

ARGH great, i just realized...the MOBO supports DDR3 memory not DDR2...in search for a new MOBO (w/ e-sata port)

THIS is more time consuming then i thought it'd be...but i don't mind it, i'm kinda enjoying it :) 
January 12, 2009 2:21:31 AM

ok found this MOBO Asus P5Q-E for $155...but it says it has only 1 PCI x16 so how can it do crossfire?
January 12, 2009 2:39:04 AM

ok so found this MOBO "MSI P45" - for $150 says has 2 PCI x16 slots, so this would be okay for crossfire right?

sorry i'm being a lil annoying, but just trying to figure it out!
January 12, 2009 3:29:39 AM

definitely dont get a seagate 7200.11

they last 7 minutes or less IF they arent DOA
January 12, 2009 4:07:54 AM

yea i already changed that to WD6401AALS which is a western digital 640gb @ 7200RPM. thank though
January 12, 2009 1:16:25 PM

ppriyank said:
ok found this MOBO Asus P5Q-E for $155...but it says it has only 1 PCI x16 so how can it do crossfire?



P5Q-E has 3 PCI-E slots for video cards. It does Crossfire all right. It's only $145 here.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131296&Tpk=P5Q-E

The GA-EP45-UD3P is also very good, and only $117 after rebate.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128358&Tpk=GA-Ep45-UD3P

I'd stick with Asus or Gigabyte. Don't trust MSI that much for a MB.


January 12, 2009 1:20:04 PM

ppriyank said:
ARGH great, i just realized...the MOBO supports DDR3 memory not DDR2...in search for a new MOBO (w/ e-sata port)

THIS is more time consuming then i thought it'd be...but i don't mind it, i'm kinda enjoying it :) 



Yeah, it's fun.

The P5Q-E and GA-EP45-UD3P both have e-SATA. It's not very obvious from newegg, but if you look at the enlarged pictures you can see the e-SATA bracket. That's a device you connect to a SATA port and attach to the back of the case, and then you connect your e-SATA external HDD to it.

Also, they both use DDR2.

January 12, 2009 1:23:33 PM

ppriyank said:

i guess i'll get all these parts...and with the saved money i'll get the coolermaster cooler its $60 might as well. the cooler that u suggested is a bit cheaper but i read the reviews and it said it was a bit harder to install, so i'll spend some extra cash and get the coolermaster w/ 8gb of memory.


OK, I'm lost here. Which CPU are you getting and which cooler? TBH you don't sound like an overclocker to me, and if you aren't you might as well save your $60 and not get an after market cooler. For example the Q9550 comes with a cooler already, and that cooler is good enough if you don't overclock.


January 12, 2009 5:05:53 PM

ok, so i guess NO cpu cooler, and with the saved money, i'll get the network adaptor for wireless internet and maybe a tv tuner :)  thanks for all the input...and i think imma go with GA-EP45-UD3P MOBO...its cheaper, and has everything i need!

as far as overclocking is concerned...i'll read it here, and deal with that issue later, and buy a cooler in future...JUST another quick question though...like Nividia...we can do 3-way SLI, can we do 3-way crossfire with ati mobo???
January 12, 2009 5:17:42 PM

Not with the GA-EP45-UD3P, it only has two slots for video cards.

It's possible with a P5Q-E or a P5E3 Deluxe
http://www.guru3d.com/article/radeon-hd-4850-and--4870-crossfirex-performance/2 or with an X58/i7 build. Some games (CoD) scale incredibly well when you add the third card, and some don't scale almost at all (Crysis). Mind you, adding a third nVidia card to a SLI setup will also work well in some games and badly in others. It's not nVidia's or ATI's fault, it's the games themselves.
January 12, 2009 5:23:39 PM

oh ok...thanks for the link...i guess i'll just stick to 1 4870 1gb card for now, and maybe a month down the road i'll hook it up with another one in crossfire...i think i'll be good with that...and got rid of cooler master cpu cooler, one of my friend has an extra wireless adapter sittin around so that saves me money, and i guess i'll just use my older external tv tuner with this...and spend money on a blu ray drive (any tips on which is "best for the buck?")
January 12, 2009 5:27:46 PM

One more thing: P5Q-E and P5E3 have a third PCI-E slot of the right physical size for a video card, but electrically it's not running at 16x. It's 8x or 4x or something even worse. People who want three ATI GPUs can do it by combining HD 4870 1GB with HD 4870 X2 on an X48 motherboard. That avoids the bottlenecks and the need for a third slot.

http://game.amd.com/us-en/content/images/crossfirex/CF_combo_chart_Nov08.jpg

January 12, 2009 5:29:06 PM

ppriyank said:
blu ray drive (any tips on which is "best for the buck?")


Sorry, no idea. I'm already spending way more than I should on DVDs. If I get into Blu-Ray I'll be in big trouble.
January 12, 2009 5:34:30 PM

haha...that's fine...i think was looking into this one...its only $95 and that's the cheapest on tigerdirect/newegg, and has some good reviews...should i go for it?

Lite-On DH-401S-08
January 12, 2009 5:48:00 PM

OH another question, do you think i should get the extended warranty on the MOBO, PSU, CPU, Blu ray drive? i mean if i have a Mfg. Warranty? so i pay extra $113 for extedned warranty? or is it a must since that's the heart and soul of the system???
January 12, 2009 5:49:52 PM

OK, I have already mentioned I'm clueless about Blu-Ray, right? So don't listen to me too seriously. I looked at Newegg and sorted results by number of reviews.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&Description=Blu-Ray%20SATA&bop=And&Order=REVIEWS

It looks like LG sells a ton more Blu-Ray drives than anybody else. Count the reviews, LG has the first 4 places with 295, 128,112, 35, and then finally comes somebody else with 25 reviews. Of course, there are plenty of idiots in the world, so these numbers don't necessarily mean LG is the best. Still, I'd read some reviews for that best-selling LG first.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136133

BTW, the second drive there at $250 is actually able to write Blu-Ray disks too. I'm buying myself one of those for backups when the blank disks get cheaper :) 



January 12, 2009 5:55:36 PM

ppriyank said:
OH another question, do you think i should get the extended warranty on the MOBO, PSU, CPU, Blu ray drive? i mean if i have a Mfg. Warranty? so i pay extra $113 for extedned warranty? or is it a must since that's the heart and soul of the system???


I wouldn't. You already have the manufacturer warranty. If something dies the manufacturer will replace it.

Also, it's very expensive insurance, $113 to insure products worth $700 or so which can be replaced a year from now for $500 with much better products. It's not like the chances of needing that insurance are huge either, since you're getting high-quality stuff. I bet it will all work without problems for the next 3 years at least.



January 12, 2009 5:59:21 PM

that's awesome...them $25 and $15 warranty fees adds up, i didn't even realize that it came out to $113 untill i added it all up. and i think i'll get the LG blu ray drive that you recommended just cuz LG (which i believe is a well know company, atleast better then lite-on, and those reviews are just a bonus) :) 
January 13, 2009 5:00:46 AM

ok so this is what i finally put together...

PCP&Cooling 750W PSU - $115 @ Tigerdirect
Intel Q9550 w/ FREE FarCry 2 - $309.99 @ Tigerdirect
Logitech Wave Keyboard - $49.99 @ Tigerdirect
SAMSUNG 22X DVD±R - $22.99 @ Newegg
COOLER MASTER HAF - $159.99 @ Newegg
WD6401AALS 640GB - $79.99 @ Newegg
Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound - $5.99 @ Newegg
ASUS Radeon HD 4870 1gb video card - $250 @ Newegg
OCZ Platinum 8gb (4x2gb) DDR2 1066 ram - $126 @ newegg
Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3P mobo - $137 @ newegg
LG Blu-ray - $120 @ newegg

TOTAL w/ Shipping and after rebates comes out to---- $1310.97

pretty nice for my budget i'd like to say...BUT THERE IS ONE PROBLEM...while surfing here on the forums, i ran across a problem with coolermaster HAF cases...everybody loves them, they are quiet and really easy to work with. so what's the problem u ask? DUST FILTER...has cooler master solved this problem? and if not, then how do i slove it? i really like this case, and would like to stick to it...any ideas/tips?

thank you,
Dr. P!!!
January 13, 2009 12:11:10 PM

They haven't solved it yet. :( 

Some Newegg reviewers say they made their own filters.

If you put the case on the desk rather than on the floor you will still need to clean it but less often.

If you are willing to get a different case that has filters, check out the NZXT Tempest or the Antec 1200.



January 13, 2009 12:41:43 PM

dust is a trade-off with good/great air flow. The only way to solve it would be to put a heppa filtration system in your home or office. BTW, very nice build.

Because you are under budget you might want to consider the cpu heatsink/fan now. It is always a lot easier and a lot less risk to install it during the first build then opening the case later and doing it. Plus, if you get a good heatsink and mounting bracket you have to install it before the mobo is mounted in the case. Here are a couple of very good options.

XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler - Retail and bracket ($46)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

the one below is my favorite simply because I have two and know they work very well, especially with the Q9550. It also comes with a mounting bracket.

ZALMAN CNPS 9700 NT 110mm 2 Ball Ultra Quiet CPU Cooler - Retail ($65)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
January 13, 2009 1:26:28 PM

thanks for the cooler tip, but i was told that Q9550 already comes with a cooler, and that I don't need to buy an extra one...so should i spend money on it now or no?
January 13, 2009 1:47:20 PM

Will you overclock that CPU, ever?

January 13, 2009 1:48:35 PM

possibly...i have never done it, and i might just do it to learn :) 
January 13, 2009 1:50:46 PM

so i guess i should buy one...in that case, should i just get the cooler master one that i originally selected??? i think it was...COOLER MASTER Hyper Z600
January 13, 2009 2:39:07 PM

The hyper Z600 or any of the ones listed above will do fine. All the retail cpu's come with a heatsink/fan but they are designed to keep the cpu cool at stock settings. Anything over that can cause issues; not always but it is better to be safe then sorry.
January 13, 2009 7:33:38 PM

will do. thanx
January 14, 2009 2:42:31 AM

Cleaning it is no biggie. You will just need to pop the side off and use either an air compressor or some canned air to blow out the cpu heatsink and fans every 4-6 months or so. 5-10 minutes and your good.
!