Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Please help me with my first gaming build $1500-2000

Last response: in Systems
Share
May 6, 2009 2:11:11 AM

This is my first time build and need the TH gurus to give me some advice.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: this week

BUDGET RANGE: US$2000

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (COD4/5, Starcraft 2, Crysis), movies, programming, office...

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: speakers, mouse

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Tigerdirect or Amazon (seems like two of the few that will accept foreign funds)

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel i7

OVERCLOCKING: Probably CPU, Maybe RAM/GPU

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: If necessary

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1200 24"

This is sort of what I was looking at, but will change parts for either more performance or less money.

CPU: Core i7 $280
Cooler: Cooler Master V8 $60
Thermal Paste: Artic Silver 5 $7
MB: Asus P6T Deluxe V2 $310
RAM: OCZ Platinum 3x2GB 1600Mhz $95
Case: CM 690 $90
PSU: Corsair 850TX $150
GPU: Saphire HD4870x2 2GB $420
HDD: WD 6401aals $75
DVD: HP DVD burner $25
Monitor: Samsung 2433BW 24" $350
Keyboard: Logitech G11 $60
OS: Vista 64 $125

I have a few questions:

1) MB: I'm debating whether to go with the P6T or the Deluxe V2.
If going crossfire/SLI would I need a special bridge with the extra spacing (4 PCIe slots)
Is the 16+2 phase power, better sound card & cooling worth the extra money?

2) Graphics card.
Definately am going to play COD4/5 and starcraft 2, but also interested in Crysis, Hawx (with CPU) and whatever else I get my hands on. I am aiming to get lots of eye candy at 1920x1200 and willing to spend up to $500 to get it, but less is preferable. Wondering whether to get the
HD4870x2 straight away (~$420)
a GTX285 with either another one or newcard in ~2 years (can get an XFX with FarCry2 for 350)
an HD4890 with another one in a year (or maybe right away) for $250 each.
or SLI GTX275's

The free game is tempting as well as the Ambient Occlusion feature of the GTX, but if ATI has better performance/cost then ATI it is (also for SC2).

3)Wireless card
Anyone know any good wireless cards which are compatible with Vista 64-bit. If I get a wireless card I might just go with the P6T (non-deluxe) since I need the PCI slot (leaving CF/SLI options open). Alternative to wireless would be a 75 foot patch cable (which might be pushing it for signal strength etc??)

4) Also looking at the Samsung T240 Touch of Color as the monitor.

Thanks for any help/opinions offered.

More about : gaming build 1500 2000

May 6, 2009 2:24:23 AM

Build looks good to me. I'm an AMD fanboy so I'm not too knowledgeable on the i7, but I can recommend a good graphics solution.

I would go with w HD4890's in Crossfire. According to this review, an overclocked 4890 will beat a stock GTX 285, saving you $100 each. Also, take a look at this, the 4890 scales very well in Crossfire, 93% for 1920x1200. Best I've seen for any dual GPU solution
May 6, 2009 2:26:11 AM

I'm using the p6t deluxe v2 and it's a great choice. Don't believe all the forums unless your sure that the profile stating that their experience is expert is true.You can go so many way's but seeing how right out of the gate your willing to spend the money needed and your first choices are great. The cool master v8 might be a problem if your going to do a lot of gaming, it's a good cpu cooler but it might be to big in your case and limit your air flow creating to much heat. Take a look at this one (CoolIT SYSTEMS Domino A.L.C Advanced Liquid Cooling) if your not hip to liquid cooling , good this one is for you. Totally maintenance free and self contained and best of all cheap!!! It takes up the back of your case were the rear fan would go but makes up for it in breathing room around cpu and gpu! Think about it .Peace out!!!!
Related resources
May 6, 2009 2:29:50 AM

GTX 275 Sli right now would be the equivalent of having a better preforming GTX295 , Thats probably the way you should go if you plan on playing Crysis at 1920x1200. I would have other advice , but as for the intel side of things I dont know much about they're motherboards , just get one that supports Nvida really well on the Chipset.
May 6, 2009 4:14:00 AM

If you want to get 2 graphics cards, then go with the V2, the better spacing of the slots will make for cooler temperatures and allow you to overclock the GPU's. The MB comes with the appropriate length SLI bridge, so you don't have to buy one separately. I would go with the GTX 275, that anandtech article is the only one I have seen that actually places the 4890 above the GTX 275, all others I have seen put the GTX 275 on top. The GTX 275 is overclockable as well, and will also beat a stock GTX 285 when overclocked. The 4870 would probably be fine for your resolution, but that GPU is not overclockable (maybe like 20mhz, but that is nothing).
May 6, 2009 4:18:21 AM

xthekidx said:
If you want to get 2 graphics cards, then go with the V2, the better spacing of the slots will make for cooler temperatures and allow you to overclock the GPU's. The MB comes with the appropriate length SLI bridge, so you don't have to buy one separately. I would go with the GTX 275, that anandtech article is the only one I have seen that actually places the 4890 above the GTX 275, all others I have seen put the GTX 275 on top. The GTX 275 is overclockable as well, and will also beat a stock GTX 285 when overclocked. The 4870 would probably be fine for your resolution, but that GPU is not overclockable (maybe like 20mhz, but that is nothing).


W00t! ^o^ Something we agree on.
May 6, 2009 2:16:27 PM

xthekidx said:
I would go with the GTX 275, that anandtech article is the only one I have seen that actually places the 4890 above the GTX 275, all others I have seen put the GTX 275 on top. .


Hmmm . . .

Overclockersclub.com
Xbit Labs (Doesn't compare with the GTX 275, but in many cases the 4890 stock performs better than a stock GTX 285)
Extremetech.com

I just Googled 4890 review and these were the first three I pulled up, showing the 4890 defeating the GTX 275.

On Tomshardware.com the GTX 275 is ahead of the 4890 without AA and AF, but with AA and AF on the 4890 pulls ahead
May 6, 2009 3:30:56 PM

Eh, he can choose whatever , its only a 2 fps difference.
May 6, 2009 3:36:17 PM

Gin Fushicho said:
Eh, he can choose whatever , its only a 2 fps difference.


Lol I agree. Sorry, the AMD fanboy in me wouldn't give up without a fight ;) 
May 6, 2009 3:57:15 PM

lol , I'm an AMD fan, but I'm also a Nvidia fan 1st. xD I do own an ATI system though.
May 6, 2009 4:00:44 PM

1) The motherboards P6T/Deluxe V2 are pretty much the same. The Deluxe has minor tweaks you probably won't notice.

2) If i had the stash, i would get x2 GTX275's together...or x2 4770's (cheaper) for great performance. A single GTX285 will do too...and anything beyond like the GTX295 is kind of a waste of money...for now until the get cheap.

3) I can't comment on wireless...i don't bother with that.

4) I have a Asus 22" 1920x1080 2ms HDMI/DVI/VGA input monitor with HDCP. Its was worth $180 when i got it...think its still the same price...but it performs flawlessly. There is some bleeding and black levels are high, but the color is supreme!
May 6, 2009 4:08:16 PM

Or he could get an AMD 955 build and a trio of non-reference 4890's oc'd to 1ghz/4.4ghz.

that would own in gaming, would probably be the best gaming system which isn't for FSX you can buy.
May 6, 2009 4:09:47 PM

I'm assuming he doesnt want an AMD build. ^^;
May 6, 2009 5:20:22 PM

Stay with the I7, the 950 and 975 are coming out May 31st if you can wait,(I would). Nothing beats the I7's, NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
May 6, 2009 5:22:35 PM

I know this because I have an E.S. 950 I'm running in My system (unlocked) and it's so fast I can't believe it. Have some temp. problems to work out but watercooler is on the way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
May 6, 2009 5:26:25 PM

^ Oh really?

a C2Q Q9650 will beat an i7 940 in gaming and quad-threaded and below apps providing both are stock clocked.

And also the 955 will beat the i7 940 in gaming too.

Oh and a dual Xeon Nehalem workstation will beat the i7's in most other things.
May 6, 2009 6:55:40 PM

They'll beat the i7 because games are predominately GPU dependent, and when they "beat" the i7 its only by a few FPS which isn't noticeable. I agree than an i7 is overkill if you are just wanting a gaming rig set up, and the money you'll save by using an AMD system can be used to get a better GPU or dual GPU solution.

Even though I'm an AMD fan, I agree that the i7 however is typically faster in multi-tasking, video editing, or anything really CPU dependant etc.
May 6, 2009 6:59:55 PM

Core i7 teh weener ^_^. I wonder how well the new extreme core i7 will do ^_^
May 6, 2009 7:03:40 PM

I always recommend AMD PII builds first for midrange gaming builds, but I think at 2K budget, he can splurge a little for the i7 setup.

@Helloworld_98 no way you could OC 3 4890's to 1ghz unless you had an extreme water cooling setup. The heat generated by those things would be intense, even having two cards vs just 1 can make about a 10 degree difference in temperatures. Overclocking and adding in a third card to the mix wouldn't be feasible without watercooling and a really good radiator and pump.

Besides, there is no point in getting 3 4890's unless you have a 30" monitor, 2 4890's will max out a 19x12 res monitor in every game.
May 6, 2009 8:05:19 PM

^ Well the new Sapphire Atomic's come at 1GHZ stock and they probably guessed that the people buying them are going to be hardcore gamers with multiple graphics cards so they must have sorted something out.
May 6, 2009 8:40:41 PM

They use an aftermarket cooler on them, which helps dissipate the heat, but doesn't do anything about the heat that is generated. Stick three of those together in a case and you will have overheating issues.
May 6, 2009 10:46:11 PM

I want to clear the air . I think amd is the ***(great), but it is an economy chip and if homeslice has 2 large why would he even consider an amd?
May 6, 2009 11:03:24 PM

mrfixit15811 said:
I want to clear the air . I think amd is the ***(great), but it is an economy chip and if homeslice has 2 large why would he even consider an amd?

If he was running a 30" monitor at 25x16 res and needed to buy beastly GPU's to make it work. That is the only reason I can think of.
May 7, 2009 12:02:19 AM

Yey, I didn't think of that. Guess deep down inside just a die hard Intel guy!
May 7, 2009 12:10:16 AM

While I got the overclocking wiz kids on this forum I just put together a new system asus deluxe p6t v2, ES core i7 950,Corsair 750 watt psu, water cooling, MSI 4830 x 2(crossfire) Zalman northbrige fan and heatsink(mobo running hot) and I'm new to the i7 overclocking. I started small and got the cpu @ 3.2gig and it's running 39c and the mobo 40c, are these good temps for this speed? If anybody has a similar setup please share voltage and freq. settings. THANKS!!!!!
May 7, 2009 12:44:55 AM

Thanks for the replies.

I had considered AMD PII (and Core2 Quad), but decided to go with the i7 920.
Reason being is that I'm probably going to pay loads in shipping, which skews the relative prices since it is likely to cost the same to ship cheap parts and high end parts. So I going for big, less frequent upgrades. Hopefully the next big one in say 4 years will be a lot cheaper since I have case, monitor, psu etc.

Based on your comments I think I'll go with the P6T Deluxe v2 and forget the wireless card.

Now just the hard part of choosing the graphics card.
Should I definately rule out the GTX285?
Anyone have any benchmarks for SLI 275's or CF 4890's
Are benchmark typically minimum or average frame rates?
May 7, 2009 2:33:15 AM

mrfixit15811 said:
While I got the overclocking wiz kids on this forum I just put together a new system asus deluxe p6t v2, ES core i7 950,Corsair 750 watt psu, water cooling, MSI 4830 x 2(crossfire) Zalman northbrige fan and heatsink(mobo running hot) and I'm new to the i7 overclocking. I started small and got the cpu @ 3.2gig and it's running 39c and the mobo 40c, are these good temps for this speed? If anybody has a similar setup please share voltage and freq. settings. THANKS!!!!!

You should probably start your own thread, you will get more attention for your needs. Don't parasitize a thread.
May 7, 2009 3:27:18 AM

xthekidx said:
You should probably start your own thread, you will get more attention for your needs. Don't parasitize a thread.


Agreed.
May 7, 2009 3:33:36 AM

noobie1 said:
Thanks for the replies.

I had considered AMD PII (and Core2 Quad), but decided to go with the i7 920.
Reason being is that I'm probably going to pay loads in shipping, which skews the relative prices since it is likely to cost the same to ship cheap parts and high end parts. So I going for big, less frequent upgrades. Hopefully the next big one in say 4 years will be a lot cheaper since I have case, monitor, psu etc.

Based on your comments I think I'll go with the P6T Deluxe v2 and forget the wireless card.

Now just the hard part of choosing the graphics card.
Should I definately rule out the GTX285?
Anyone have any benchmarks for SLI 275's or CF 4890's
Are benchmark typically minimum or average frame rates?



Just scroll up, I've posted at least two post with links to benchmark reviews. (the links are hyperlinked to text, so click on the text highlighted blue)
May 7, 2009 11:00:20 AM

Apart from the techpowerup review (posted by JTP709), which has 4890 CF, I can't find anything else with 4890 CF or anything with 275 SLI. I might be missing it.
Would prefer to see how they performed before spending money on it if possible

This TH benchmark (link) makes me wonder if a single 285 would be enough. 35.9FPS on Crysis at high with 4xAA sounds good if it's minimum rather than average.
May 7, 2009 1:42:48 PM

Its always average that you will be seeing. And I will tell you , and most everyone here will agree with me , that a GTX 275 is just a 295 cut in half.
May 7, 2009 1:56:27 PM

hi noobie1

for your monitor, i recommend Asus Mk241H. Right now its only 230 after MIR at newegg, has the same resolution as t240HD and the color is good too. some said it had problems with its webcam, but since you are looking for a monitor, i think this is a perfect choice. you can always buy webcam separately if you really need one.(T240HD also dont have webcam)

for Graphics, single GTX 285 is enough. that should secure you for the rest of the year. As the time flies, the price will go down and you could buy another one if you think you need it. but for me better get a whole new card with a whole new technology rather than go SLI. There is rumors GT300 will be launched next year.

May 7, 2009 2:00:32 PM

PSU is kinda overkill, but that should power up your rigs for like 6-7years(maybe?)
May 7, 2009 4:05:34 PM

@ mansalim
the sammy T240HD also has a build in HDTV tuner and the Asus doesnt which is why I'm thinking about gettin me a t240hd as well.
May 7, 2009 5:23:58 PM

The Samsung is a much nicer monitor, the picture is much clearer on it (I have seen one and I want it lol). The Asus monitor is alright, but its a step below the Samsung.
May 7, 2009 11:41:06 PM

Samsungs are nice, but if you can afford (and find it) Try getting a Westing house, they're industrial. ^-^
May 7, 2009 11:47:40 PM

yeah he got 2000 on his budget. T240HD shouldnt be a problem.
new LG's are good too (53series) . they are touch sensitive and automatically adjust the brightness which is cool.
May 7, 2009 11:48:01 PM

Are you serious? Westinghouse? I had a westinghouse LCD TV that after two weeks the picture turned green. I sent it back and the replacement lasted for about 1 month, it turned a weird redish color, and had about 6 pixels that would get stuck periodically. Maybe they put more quality control into their Monitors, but its a pretty darn close to identical technology as TV's...I will never buy a Westinghouse product again.
May 8, 2009 12:00:05 AM

yeah.. westinghouse are cheap. the color isnt sharp. maybe im looking at the cheap ones, but i definitely wont buy it.
May 8, 2009 12:48:20 AM

That Asus is 1920x1080 not 1920x1200 and I can't purchase thru newegg (it's no longer available on tigerdirect). I don't want to be too thrifty with the monitor since it needs to last a long time(6+years). Dells are too expensive, so I figured samsung was high quality for less.

If I can get the PSU to last 6 years thats great. Originally went with that one in case I went SLI 285, and for presumably better "quality" (for lack of a better word) over the 750TX.
May 8, 2009 1:07:47 AM

xthekidx said:
Are you serious? Westinghouse? I had a westinghouse LCD TV that after two weeks the picture turned green. I sent it back and the replacement lasted for about 1 month, it turned a weird redish color, and had about 6 pixels that would get stuck periodically. Maybe they put more quality control into their Monitors, but its a pretty darn close to identical technology as TV's...I will never buy a Westinghouse product again.


O_o I'm sorry. I for one would never buy they're TV's either , they suck. I have a 24" Westing house I'm useing right no and it rocks, all my games have never been so vivid. *shrugs* I know they're monitors on small scale ROCK , but on a bigger scale its best not to try. :sweat: 
May 8, 2009 2:11:34 AM

My roommate and my brother both have westinghouse LCD monitors and they're great. But i concure on the poor quality of the TVs. I used to work at Best Buy and our store brand insignias and dynexs were better quality than westinghouse IMO
May 8, 2009 4:08:51 AM

the asus is 1920x1200.. Read carefully..
If you dont believe, check the Asus website . Here
May 8, 2009 4:27:57 AM

mansalim said:
the asus is 1920x1200.. Read carefully..
If you dont believe, check the Asus website . Here


I say he should get it , its got similar specs to my Westinghouse , some higher some lower. It looks awesome to me.
May 8, 2009 10:32:56 AM

Too late, already purchased a Samsung touch of color.

Also decided to go for an EVGA GTX 285 only since I got it for $320.

Thanks everyone for their advice. I'll post full specs and pics when I get everything. Now anxiously hoping it all arrives in working condition.
May 8, 2009 1:39:50 PM

Well you still made an awesome disicion. ^-^
!