First build, and making sure everything is right.

Right. So I'm working on a custom build on NewEgg... I know a basic knowledge of computer hardware, however, by no means am I an expert. That is why I've come here; to perfect my build for my budget, and get the most out of it, along with learning a lot more about computers.

I have around 600+ in the bank now, and it is time for an upgrade; away from this terrible HP Pavilion. So my budget is strictly under 600. I am going to re-use my monitor, speakers, keyboard, DVD-ROM, and mouse that I have now. Leaving me with the core essentials of a computer that I need to get. For the requirements, I am mainly a gamer. By no means do I do intense multitasking. At most, I'll have a video game, MSN, iTunes, and a maybe 2 tabs on Mozilla running.
I know this is rather cheaper, but since I have limited money now, I will be getting more later, which means, I will upgrade it later over time. So no worries.
I also will consider some overclocking...


Cooler Master 690


$90>$75 with Rebate
PC P&C 500W

Hard Drive

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

Graphics Card

$145>$130 with Rebate
SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail


$57>$27 with Rebate
CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail


Intel Pentium E5200 Wolfdale 2.5GHz 2MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Retail


GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3L LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard


I have come here for one simple reason. To get the best advice I can get, and make my computer be the best it can be for my budget. Please critique anything and offer anything you think is better, especially on the Graphic Card/CPU/MoBo!

Much thanks in advance guys. I really think this forum is awesome.
12 answers Last reply
More about first build making right
  1. You should have doubts about the PSU, it's garbage.

    Here is a quality PSU that will cover your system:
    PC P&C 500W

    Cooler Master 690
    This is a well designed case that will keep your parts cool.

    Everything else seems fine, given your budget.
  2. +1 to Proximon's suggestions.

    The more expensive Mobo will allow xfire later (two ATI video cards) but you don't have room in your budget for a PSU to support 2 cards, so just go with the cheaper board.

    If you wanted to get a better video card, I would go for the E5200, which is basically the same chip with a slightly smaller L2 cache. Then you could look at the HD 4850
  3. Thanks for the advice! I took the suggested Case/PSU, the E5200, and the graphic card.
    SAPPHIRE 100245L Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card

    Shopping cart grandtotal is $633>$558 with rebates and shipping.

    Thanks a lot guys, I really do appreciate it.

    Any suggestions for the future?
  4. I suggest you overclock your cpu to around 3.4 or so. Get a good cooler, Xigmatek S1283 Dark Knight is a good one, some MX-2 Arctic cooling thermal grease and use that cooler instead of the stock cooler. You will get a lot more performance out of your chip.
  5. Hello again guys! I am an active member on an another gaming forum, and so I posted my current build on there.

    To one of the member's attention, he caught my mobo is not compatible with my memory. DDR3 MoBo - DDR2 Memory. So yet again, I need help with that. :]

    He said my current CPU would bottleneck my system, and considered a E8400.

    Along with that, he had doubts about my PSU cutting off my computer's lifetime, however I think this current PSU can compete with 700W PSUs easily.

    I took his consideration into getting a better HDD for a small increase in price, with a great performance increase.

    Please give me your thoughts, once again!
    Thank you!

  6. DDR3 mobos are for the new i7 chipset from intel. If you have a socket 775 mobo for your dual core CPU, then it will use DDR2 memory.

    He is wrong about the CPU bottlenecking your system, assuming you plan to do at least minor overclocking.

    The PSU is more than enough to power this system IMO.

    As for the HDD, I would upgrade to the 640gb caviar black for not much more -

    It is the fastest 7200rpm HDD on the market and offers the best storage per dollar. Hope some of this helps!
  7. What motherboard did you want to go with,.? we would have pointed out that obvious incompatablilty if you had posted that here. Look at this board, its very good quality and allows for a second video card later on:
    if you will not get another card later, then this one is a good option:

    An e5200 and e8400 will be very similar performers clock for clock, the e5200 just a tad bit slower, and $90 cheaper. They use the same processing chip, just had different cache sizes, so if you are on a budget, you should get the e5200 and OC.

    The PSU you have now is a good PSU, the one you had before was crap. If you want to get 2 video cards later on, you need to get a 650w or 750w psu for that.
  8. Thanks for fast replies and suggestions!

    Considering the price, and the points proven, I will go with the E5200.

    PSU seems fine to me as well, so I'll keep it.

    For my first MoBo posted, I had a DDR3 one, that was not compatible with the DDR2 memory.
    I don't plan to go with another card, so I will grab the 2nd one you linked.

    For the HDD, I upgraded to the one Fooly linked. Only 5 bucks more!

    Thanks once again. I will come back if any more problems arise.
  9. Sorry for the double post.. But I feel like I'm trapped in the middle. I trust both of your opinions, however I need some backup vouches from some more members to validate the choice.

    His opinion. (Quite a long one...)

    The processor runs your entire system. If you skimp on that, your system will never perform at the level that the rest of the components demand.

    The processor and motherboard are your two most important components. Everything else depends on those two pieces of hardware.

    Getting a lower-tier architecture processor with a lower clock speed and lower cache and overclocking it will not make it anywhere near as fast as it should be. The Pentium line is fairly old. The Core2Duo architecture is far superior. It can do much more work even running at the same frequency. Further, the cache on the processor is often heavily underrated. The processor is much faster than any of the 'lanes' the data it processes has to travel on. Greater cache on the processor allows it to store instructions it has already processed and queue up their travel to their destination, which results in much greater efficiency. If the processor doesn't have to wait on the rest of the system, it can do a much greater amount of work in the same amount of time and at the same frequency as an equivalent processor with less cache.
    Finally, the Front Side Bus speed of the processor is also important. Higher speeds mean faster data travel through the processor, which means once again that the processor can wait less on the system to get work done.

    Overclocking the processor will improve its operation, yes, but it will also magnify the amount of heat it creates (which will degrade not only its own lifespan, but also that of the rest of your system) and it will still never match up to the processing power of a better processor.

    Your processor is your computer's mind. The motherboard is its body.
    These two components are by far the most important part of your computer. I would highly, highly suggest not cutting corners on them.

    Edit: Taking a second look at your power supply, you should be fine. I misread the amperage on the +5v rail before.
    You may have to upgrade the next time you upgrade your video card, though.

    More Edit: The person you spoke to about the processor didn't advise you well, I feel. The e7300 has a superior architecture, has ~30% faster Front Side Bus, and 50% more Level 2 cache; on top of the already existing slightly faster natural operating frequency. The e5200 is a huge downgrade.
  10. The e5200 isn't a Pentium dual core, it runs the same wolfdale processor chip as the e8400, it looks like he is under the impression that it is a pentium dual core, which is far inferior to the core 2 duo's. The e5200 is a core 2 duo that goes by the Pentium name.

    So yeah, the E8400 is a lot better at stock speeds. The whole reason you get the e5200 is to OC, which will take care of all those differences between the two processors. The e5200 should not be thought of as a permanent solution, only a temporary one until you want to upgrade the processor to something better, say a Q9550 in a year or six months when you have more money and prices drop, so who cares if it will get hot and not last as long if you hadn't OC'd? The only difference that cannot be made up is the L2 cache, which contrary to what he is saying, will not severely hinder your system, although it will not run quite as fast as if it had a larger L2 cache. If you feel that the e5200 is cutting it down too much, go for an e7400 for $45 more, but I don't think you can fit an e8400 in your low budget.
  11. Point well taken xthekidx. I am going to go with the E5200 for now and upgrade near Christmas.

    Would you advise me to get that Dark Knight cooler now? I might be able to squeeze it in with my budget. If I can't, is OCing to 3.5GHz still viable?
  12. You could still get to 3.5 on stock, but you would be running pretty hot I imagine. I would recommend getting a cooler for any OC. So yes if you can afford it get that Dark Knight Cooler.
Ask a new question

Read More

Build Systems Product