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$650 new build for a casual gamer

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May 21, 2009 10:36:16 PM

Hi guys and gals,
A friend of mine recently began playing WoW again and she would like to upgrade from her integrated-videocard laptop to a homebuilt desktop PC that would be able to handle the not-so intense gameplay of WoW. She's looking to save money by building a decent system that would last her a while but she doesn't need anything top of the line because she's not playing an FPS at full resolution running maximum quality settings or anything.

I built my own system for pretty much the same reason about 5-6 years ago but since then that old desktop has died and I've been using my laptop ever since. I've been out of the hardware loop for a while. A friend of mine let me know he would help me build a system if I ordered all the parts and he came over to help, he is an amateur himself but he was able to build himself a top of the line system for $1100 recently and I trust the two of us together, with the help of this forum, can build our friend's computer.

That being said, here are the specifics of our plan:
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Some time within the next week. I would like to begin ordering the parts tomorrow or this weekend, and have the system built within 10-14 days from now.
BUDGET RANGE: US$600-750, the less the better. Not looking for anything extravagant here.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Pretty much just playing WoW casually (note: this means it doesn't need to run 50 FPS constant at the highest settings. Lower graphics settings are not a problem as the goal here is to have her be able to do the 25-player raids without lagging from all the effects and people running around and such.)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Everything is required, except for the mouse. Her only previous computer is a laptop.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: I have always ordered computer parts from newegg. They have always shipped it in a timely fashion and even when a hard drive was shipped broken I sent it back and within a few days I had a new one free of charge. I was very pleased with this.

PARTS PREFERENCES: I have no preference really. Looking for a very high durability/cost rate, as opposed to performance/cost. She wants parts that perform consistently, without breaking or having any problems, over parts that might put out a bit more power.

OVERCLOCKING: No

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: I'm not sure what this means.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Resolution is not an issue. It needs to be a flat-screen LCD though. I could use suggestions on some cheap monitors since from what I've found from browsing quickly through a few sites, it seems that even the lower-end monitors are fairly expensive.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: The last PC I built had issues with overheating, even though I did not overclock it or anything like that. I felt like I made a poor case choice and it had a lot of fans but most of them seemed to do nothing. Also, I have had problems with power supplies dying on me, even new ones.
Besides that, everything should be fine. I would like to post my build here so you guys could give me suggestions. After making a few considerations and changes I will also probably post a final build and maybe ask for advice and pointers on how to put it together and stuff like that, if there is anything additional I'll need to know as far as putting things together besides what it says in the instruction manual.

Here are a list of the parts I have chosen atm:
OS- $100 (Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders - OEM)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
^ one question about this. this is a full-version of windows vista, correct? because there are $210 windows vista home premium, and the only difference I can find is the fact that this one says "for system builders". i'm not sure why this is less expensive or what. also I'm not sure what the difference is between 32 and 64 bit, doing research I have found that 32 bit has a few differences in RAM and memory but 64 bit is preferred. any additional info would be greatly appreciated.

monitor - $100 (Acer V173 b Black 17" 5ms LCD Monitor)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
looks good but a bit pricey. is there anything cheaper available?

case - $45 (COOLER MASTER Centurion 5)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
looks decent enough. my old computer had overheating problems, but this seems to be a nicer case.

MOBO + CPU - $155 (Combo deal, may run out before I am able to buy it. $15 combo discount is nice though)
MOBO - $90 (ASUS M3N78-EM AM2+/AM2 NVIDIA GeForce 8300 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
the only requirement here is that the MOBO comes with an integrated sound system that supports basic stuff like streaming music through ventrilo and recording from line-in or stereo mix. some sound cards lack even these simple capabilities.

CPU - $80 (AMD Phenom 8650 Toliman 2.3GHz Socket AM2+ 95W Triple-Core Processor Model HD8650WCGHBOX - Retail)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
seems to be good, any suggestions on anything that might be cheaper for these 2 selections? the combo deal really did it for me considering these pieces look reliable and they are quite inexpensive.

graphics card - $130 (POWERCOLOR AX4850 512MD3-HV2 Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
a friend of mine who also plays WoW suggested this for me, since he never has any FPS problems and it is a reliable card as far as he has known. also it is quite cheap compared to most of the higher end cards.

RAM - $50 (4 gigs, 2 sticks of 2gb each) (Rendition by Crucial 2GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 667 (PC2 5300) Desktop Memory - Retail)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
not really sure if this would even fit in the motherboard slot for RAM. I feel like a novice asking these sorts of questions but I really don't know. I don't even know if DDR2 ram is good any more. I've been out of the loop for a while now =(

hard drive - $35 (Western Digital Caviar WD800BB 80GB 7200 RPM 2MB Cache IDE Ultra ATA100 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

power supply - $35 (Thermaltake TR2 W0070RUC 430W ATX12V Power Supply - Retail)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
seems like a very cheap price for a power supply. i know nothing about power supplies, would this be enough to handle all of the parts i have selected here? is there a much more reliable/trusted option that's maybe only $20-$25 more expensive? i would prefer that.

total: ~$650 + shipping and handling
(another question: when I order these 7 parts from new egg, will i have to pay like $5-10 for each part separate shipping+handling? if so, is there any way to avoid this such as using a different site or going to a certain section of the website?)

phew. Thanks for the help here guys, if there are any threads that are a must-read before building a system I would appreciate a link to read them. Though I had considered that maybe there isn't such a thread considering the variety of motherboards and different combination of parts a homebuilt system could have.

More about : 650 build casual gamer

May 21, 2009 11:21:26 PM

I'd step up to the Phenom II 720 BE (one of the other combos with that motherboard) - a ~$50 upgrade, but IMHO it's worth it.

If you won't be overclocking, that PSU should fine - but I'd still get Silverstone's ST400 just to be safe. It has a better 12v rating (despite its lower wattage rating) than the TR2, which is important when running newer components. Up to you whether or not it's worth it:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I also prefer nVidia's GTS 250 1GB over the 4850. This is purely preference - but you will get the benefits of CUDA and PhysX exclusively with the nVidia card. It also consistently beats the 4850 (see Tom's GTS 250 review), though framerates never see more than a ~5% difference. I'd go XFX:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Don't get a hard drive with a 2mb cache - I believe you'll want at least 16mb for any sort of gaming. Seagate and WD both make excellent 16mb drives for less than $60.

Additionally, I'd upgrade to DDR2-800 memory. It's not more expensive than the 667 - and should provide a decent performance boost over 667. Here's a good 4gb kit:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't think you'll get much cheaper than $100 for an LCD - unless you want to get a smaller one.

The case you picked is great.
May 21, 2009 11:24:54 PM

Also, you can see how much shipping will be when you add everything to your cart. I don't think I've ever paid more than ~$30 for shipping, even when ordering an entire system. If shipping cost is going to make or break the deal, you can always look for a similarly priced component that they offer free shipping on.
Related resources
May 21, 2009 11:31:49 PM

Check out this build instead I put together for someone else. Credit goes to Why_me for his excellent observation about the original PSU. It's probably a little more than you wanted to spend, but you can tweak it to your heart's content.


Open-Box MSI 790FX $110 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 813130136R
4GB DDR2-1066 $67 -$25 MIR http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820220315
Phenom II 940 $190 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6819103471
HD4870 1gb $190 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814102801
Corsair 750W $120 -$20 MIR http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] air%20750W
Antec 300 $55 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6811129042
Dark Knight $40 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6835233029
TX-2 $5 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6835154003
DVD Drive $18 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827118031


$695 - $45 MIR = $650
May 22, 2009 2:22:24 AM

The main difference between the OEM and retail versions of Vista 64 is that if you get the retail version then up to 5 upgrades (say mobo, CPU) to the system are done automatically online. If you get the OEM version after a major upgrade you have to use a toll free number to call and get it activated. I'm never talked to anyone who has had problems getting the OEM version activated after a major upgrade. Short answer is go OEM.

Your originally posted build has some weak spots, the worst is the 80GB IDE hard drive. I'd go with a minimum of 250 GB and also go SATA which is faster, just vista64, WoW and the basic stuff (adobe, ventrilo, virusprot etc.) will be over 30GB. Your choice for motherboard uses a Nvidia chip, more unstable and problem ridden then either Intel or AMD chipsets, i've been avoiding the Nvidia boards for over a year. The Thermaltake 430w power supply is an old design and only has 18 amps on the 12v rail. Compared to an Antec 430w that has over 30 amps on the 12v. Depending what motherboard/CPU you have you should be going with at least DDR2 800 RAM, not the 667.
As long as you order at the same time, newegg will say what the total shipping cost is.
May 22, 2009 2:45:51 AM

Proposed build, it runs $704 not including the $20 in rebates or the $11 in shipping costs to me (free shipping is your friend) I went with a weaker graphic card (the 9600GT) simply for cost reasons and it is fine for WoW, both in Dalaran and 25 man raids.

CPU/motherboard combo - Phenom2 x3 720 and Biostar 790GX $209
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Case/ power supply combo - Antec300, antec earthwatts 430w $95
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

RAM - 2x2 GB of DDR2 1066 $59
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Graphic card - 9600GT $77
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor - Asus 19" lcd $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS/HD combo - WD 320GB 8MB cache SATA/ Vista home premium 64 $130
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Burner - Asus DVD burner SATA -$24
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hope this helps.

May 22, 2009 6:12:22 AM

THis wont be popular but . a 790G series motherboard has onboard gfx that are strong enough to run WOW on a 19 inch monitor .

I like dirtmountains build , and I like godsgift2dagame build , and as already suggested use the RC of Windows7 . free download from microsoft till march next year . DO NOT download it from a torrent

Despite those builds being good I would probably get a
720 be processor
+
BIOSTAR TFORCE TA790GX 128M AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX $99.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168....

With that combo you do not need a gfx card so you save . The rest of the build is there already so no point repeating it
May 22, 2009 7:15:23 AM

Wow. Thank you all for the great replies. I'll be looking in to this further after work tomorrow.
I completely forgot about CD drive. I will add that to the list though I'll probably just get a CD burner/DVD reader or whatever. Something cheap.

I like the build dirtmountain posted and I'll probably go with something like that, though I actually liked the video card that deadboots posted. One question specifically for dirtmountain: what is your average FPS in a 25 man raid with all the settings lowest? what resolution do you run usually? i really don't want to skimp on the video card since it is the main reason my friend wants this built is to increase FPS and make sure no updates will leave her unable to play because of a higher graphics hardware requirement.
May 22, 2009 7:30:08 AM

I usually run at 1440x900 (just adjust it in video options). Set options in "Video" to custom, the big ones to turn down a bit are "shadow effects" or "shadows" not all the way down, but 1/2 or so. Player details not at top, distance viewing down a bit. With a dual core system say 2.5 GHz and a 9600GT you'll get in the 30s in Dalaran and 50s to 60 in most other areas, in the 50s in 25 Naxx and Ulduar. Use Control+R to monitor fps, make gradual changes if the results aren't to your liking. With the Phenom2 x3 720 and a 4770/4850 with the same settings you'll be in the 40-50s in Dal, at 60 everywhere else. There are some exceptions, latency has quite a bit to do with some areas, if you have a slow connection then fps drops. No question that the HD4770 or the HD4850 or even the HD4830 would be an improvement on the 9600GT, it's more a matter of budget, but the 9600GT is a perfectly good card for WoW and the new graphic settings in WotLK.

*EDIT* I forgot another exception, that's the massive PvP raids in Wintergrasp, fps will plummet with hundreds of player chars on screen, if your friend does much PvPing there, then set every graphic slider to the bottom, if only during the match.
May 22, 2009 9:00:01 AM

Don't go cheap on a monitor. Spend $49 more for a 22" on the Newegg deals. If you're not sure, surf the net or play a game for 30 minutes on a 22" and then go back to a 17", you'll see night and day difference.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
May 22, 2009 6:27:19 PM

Perfectly decent case for a non to minimally overclocked system:
Rosewill R218-P-BK Black 0.5mm SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Model #:R218-P-BK
Item #:N82E16811147073

$29.99 -$5.00 Instant $24.99

Typical optical drive:
SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S223F - OEM
Model #:SH-S223F
Item #:N82E16827151171

$24.99 $24.99

Only 19", but is 1680x1050:
Acer X193W+BD Black 19" 5ms Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail
Model #:ET.LBE09.026
Item #:N82E16824009127

$139.99 -$20.00 Instant $119.99

80+ certified, active PFC, solid PSU:
Antec earthwatts EA380 380W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.0 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
Model #:EA380
Item #:N82E16817371005

$59.99 -$15.00 Instant $44.99

I'd probably choose a 4770 instead, but they're all out of stock. This will be sufficient for WoW:
ASUS EAH4670/DI/512M/A Radeon HD 4670 512MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
Model #:EAH4670/DI/512M/A
Item #:N82E16814121274

$69.99 $69.99

Solid, reliable mobo:
GIGABYTE GA-G31M-ES2L LGA 775 Intel G31 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
Model #:GA-G31M-ES2L
Item #:N82E16813128357

$52.99 $52.99

Overclocks very well, good bang/buck:
Intel Pentium E5200 Wolfdale 2.5GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80571E5200 - Retail
Model #:BX80571E5200
Item #:N82E16819116072

$69.99 $69.99

Inexpensive, runs at JEDEC standard 1.8V:
A-DATA 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model ADQVE1B16K - Retail
Model #:ADQVE1B16K
Item #:N82E16820211188

$51.99 -$6.00 Instant $45.99

There are faster, but this should do for a budget system:
Western Digital Caviar SE WD3200AAJS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM
Model #:WD3200AAJS
Item #:N82E16822136098

$49.99 $49.99

Save $100 if you have a way to download and burn the Windows 7 RC, otherwise:
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders - OEM
Model #:66I-01939
Item #:N82E16832116488

$99.99 $99.99
Subtotal: $603.90

...plus shipping, maybe minus a rebate or two.

Replace the mobo and CPU with a 780G/V or 790G and either a 720BE or 7850 if you prefer AMD.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
May 22, 2009 6:39:56 PM

Another $5 will get you a drive with a 16MB cache. Another $40-$50 will get you a HD4850, but then you'd probably want to spend another $10 for the Earthwatts 430W PSU (although the 380 can run it; I'd rather have the cushion). If you can wait until they're back in stock, another $30-$40 will get a HD4770, for which the EA-380 is fine. Another $9 (but there's a $10MIR on it) will buy some Mushkin memory with better timing; $4 will get some similarly nicer G.Skill RAM.
May 22, 2009 7:15:35 PM

^ jtt always has good, solid reliable builds along with good advice. I know it's always a bit confusing to get so many recommendations, but it gives you some components to check benchmarks on and compare prices.
May 24, 2009 5:11:35 AM

jtt, i would like to ask just a few questions
i've done some research and it looks like your build is pretty much what i want. however, i would really like to build this with the radeon HD 4850 that i posted in my original post. would i have to get the 430W PSU to support this?



edit: hard drive you posted is a really great value, nvm on this part :) 
May 24, 2009 7:11:27 AM

i apologize for the double post. here is what's looking to be my final build.

motherboard: $53
GIGABYTE GA-G31M-ES2L LGA 775 Intel G31 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



processor: $70
Intel Pentium E5200 Wolfdale 2.5GHz 2MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



RAM: $43
A-DATA 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



hard drive: $50
Western Digital Caviar SE WD3200AAJS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



operating system: $100
windows vista 64 bit
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



Case - $50
OOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UB Black /Blue Aluminum Bezel , SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



monitor - $100 (free shipping!)
Hanns·G HW-173DBB Black 17" 8ms Widescreen LCD Monitor 250 cd/m2 500:1 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



dvd drive - $23
SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache IDE 22X DVD±R DVD Burner - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
======================================

unsure about these things:
graphics card -
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


power supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


just 1 question comes to mind now--
a lot of these products are OEM. does this mean i will have to buy additional wires and stuff? or will it be pretty much good to go?
May 24, 2009 10:37:13 AM

For a WoW machine playing at 1440x900 and below the HD4670 is a decent card. Get this one though, at $70 it has free shipping and DDR4 memory (slightly faster), no rebate, but shipping the other one would pretty much eat the $10 rebate.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

+ $10 for a 19" 5ms 1440x900 monitor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The case you picked is $45 without free shipping, the Antec 300 is $55 with free shipping and a combo deal on the 380w power supply, it would cost you about $15 to ship the coolermaster case and no savings in the PSU.... if you get the Antec and PSU combo that's about $25 in savings.
Go with the Antec power supply, the Thermaltake is an old design, the Antec is a much higher quality.

Get a SATA burner, the one you have listed is an older IDE model.

Make sure you're using the combo deals on some items HD + OS , case + PSU
a b Ý World of Warcraft
May 24, 2009 5:04:37 PM

+1 @dirtmountain. The Thermaltake PSU is not so good.
To answer your question, an Antec EA380 would be enough for a 4850, but doesn't leave much leeway.
If you want to improve this system by spending a little more, get a nice CPU cooler, like a Xigmatec S1283. This will allow you to overclock your processor by a decent amount; and/or get a faster processor, like an e7400.
May 24, 2009 7:33:01 PM

dirt, thank you for the suggestion on the monitor, i'll probably go with that one instead. also thank you both for the suggestion on PSU because i wanted a high quality one. i remember buying a low quality one that pooped out on me and caused some complications a while ago. i'll definitely go with the one you suggested.

unfortunately the case listed there is cute and that's the requirement for her system =P so there's not much i can do about that

as far as overclocking goes she doesn't want to do anything like that, if i were building a computer for myself it would probably be almost exactly what you suggested but it's not mine to toy around with and she wants a stable reliable computer just for casual gaming and homework!

i found a card i might want to buy instead of the one i have listed
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
free shipping and its $10 cheaper to begin with. that would save a bunch of money. though, in the specifications it says "System Requirements -- 450 Watt or greater power supply with 75 Watt 6-pin PCI Express power connector recommended (550 Watt and two 6-pin connectors for ATI CrossFireX technology in dual mode)"
what exactly is dual mode? and would i need to find a 450W psu to run with this card? =/

i'll look for combo deals on harddrive/OS and such though, thats a good idea. thanks for the link to the monitor that will be great.
May 25, 2009 1:11:15 AM

It's unfortunate that all the HD4770s are sold out at newegg, because that's the card i would recommend for your system, the 380w power supply and to play WoW. It uses 80watts at load and would be the perfect choice for what your friend wants. The HD4850 is also a good choice being slightly more powerful then the 4770, but it uses more power (about 115w) with more heat and noise. In a non overclocked system like this one i'd probably go ahead and use the 380w. The 430w would be a better choice of power supplies for the 4850 . If there's any way you can wait and order the 4770 when they get back into stock or just pre order it, i'd do it.
May 25, 2009 1:33:23 AM

i have to order it pretty soon
considering i want to use the 4850...
i found a psu that is cheaper than the two i have listed and is 450w
KINGWIN ABT-450MM 450W ATX 12V Ver.2.2 SLI Ready Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

would it be better to use this? is it bad to use a PSU with more wattage than necessary?

i apologize for so many newbish questions. thank you again for all of your wonderful responses
May 25, 2009 1:46:21 AM

It is not bad, except you're wasting money. Or you could look at it as leaving upgrade potential...
May 25, 2009 2:38:24 AM

Kingwin power supplies are very poor power supplies, don't buy it, don't use it. If i had a Kingwin/Raidmax/Logisys/garbage etc. in a system the first thing i'd do is pull it out and trash it. Don't risk the rest of your system or instability by going with a cheap power supply.
May 25, 2009 2:48:58 AM

okay. i've decided to go with this PSU, unless there are any objections:
CORSAIR CMPSU-450VX 450W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
Voted Best Power Supply Manufacturer by Custom PC 2008
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
definitely not going to skimp out on power supply, especially for a build for a friend.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
May 25, 2009 5:07:48 AM

That's a very good PSU.
May 25, 2009 5:27:12 AM

^ yes, great power supply.
May 25, 2009 6:08:11 AM

haha. i'm glad i finally made a correct choice here. well, with the guidance of a friend who recommended corsair.
i'll post the final build after work tomorrow. should be ordering by tuesday.
i found some DVD drives that were SATA but they are all sold out. that's not much of a problem, they might be in stock by tuesday, or i could buy one from a retailer around here.

by the way, the case she picked out seems to have a great cooling system. do i need to buy any additional fans or anything like that, since the video card i decided to get is pretty powerful? or is the case's default fan set up strong enough?
here is a link to the case again:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
May 25, 2009 7:58:16 AM

You should be fine on cooling with the case.
May 26, 2009 5:56:52 AM

*deep breath*

okay, here is the final build, i have everything in my cart on newegg, ready to be ordered tomorrow. just want to run everything by you guys (and some of my friends) one final time --

DVD drive - $27 - Pioneer 20X CD/DVD Burner Black SATA Model DVR-217DBK - OEM *edited out the IDE one i hadn't removed from yesterday
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case - $45 - COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UB Black /Blue Aluminum Bezel , SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor - $100 - Hanns·G HW-173DBB Black 17" 8ms Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(she doesn't want to spend any more on the monitor, seems like a good deal too)

Video Card - $110 - SAPPHIRE 100245DP Radeon HD 4850 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU - $75 - CORSAIR CMPSU-450VX 450W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM - $44 - A-DATA 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model ADQVE1B16K - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Motherboard - $52 - GIGABYTE GA-G31M-ES2L LGA 775 Intel G31 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(i am getting a $13 1 year Warranty on this. good choice?)

CPU - $70 - Intel Pentium E5200 Wolfdale 2.5GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80571E5200 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS/HD combo - $130
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
Western Digital Caviar SE WD3200AAJS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

subtotal is $649. exactly on target for her budget. becomes $700 with warranty and shipping costs. could drop the warranty too if you think it's a bad idea.

okay. all of the RAM and stuff will match the sockets on the motherboard, correct? power supply is sufficient enough to handle everything? i'm not overlooking any minor detail? quite confident in this build but i don't want to be knocked down by some simple mistake.

one thing that comes to mind is size of the parts... will they all fit together on this mobo? the case is huge and i'm not worried it too much. but i don't know much about the motherboard.

thank you all for your time, again. i couldn't have done this without you guys.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
May 26, 2009 11:53:26 AM

Looks good. Everything will fit together nicely.
May 26, 2009 12:46:10 PM

You could save a bit of money by going with win7.

then spend that on a better monitor because hanns don't exactly make the best monitor's, although my 28" monitor is pretty awesome.
May 26, 2009 2:14:56 PM

I dunno man, I've got a 22 inch hanns g, and I'm happy with it:) . HDMI input, or vga, no dvi though, not a big deal I don't think. May want to ask her if she is interested in going to a 4830 for the video card and say a 19 inch monitor. For a 17 inch monitor, the 4850 is probably overkill.

Keep in mind a 4830 is equal in performance roughly to a 9800gt, so it's not weak at the resolutions she's gonna be running, and is only 1 step down from the 4850.

This one is 90 bucks.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

And monitors can be found for 110 for a 19 inch. I know she does not want to go down on the video, but others here may agree, for the resolution she is going to run on a 17 inch or 19 inch, the 4850 may be too much card. Personally I'm pushing 1680x1050 on my 22 inch with a 9600gt, and while I can see it's limitations at times, but kinda depends how demanding the game is as well, your talking about a card weaker than the 4830, and you would be pushing a lower resolution than that with most 19 inch monitors.
May 26, 2009 2:17:39 PM

^ Yeah, I got a 28" hannsG and I'm happy with it too but from some reviews lemons are somewhat often.
May 26, 2009 2:22:33 PM

I guess that's what happens when you're cheap like us and buy from the lowest bidder lol. At least for me, that's how I usually am, find what I want, then pick the cheapest unless there is a glaring problem.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
May 27, 2009 1:45:14 AM

Hmmm, that one has a webcam in it too.
May 27, 2009 2:41:18 AM

yes that was another factor =)
May 31, 2009 11:05:17 PM

okay. everything came and i built it and it works PERFECTLY. it is amazing, she will love it!

just 1 thing, i had a PCI wireless card from an old computer i used. i want to put it in this computer for wireless but it comes a bit close to the videocard fan... what do you guys think? i have pictures here of the spot for it and when i plug it in. i haven't turned the computer on with the video card/wireless card in this configuration yet. want to get your guys opinion first.

http://img194.imageshack.us/my.php?image=p5270052medium...
^ video card with no wireless card in yet (the fan covers an entire slot and almost covers the 2nd slot..)

http://img20.imageshack.us/my.php?image=p5270053medium....
^ same view with wireless card in

http://img199.imageshack.us/my.php?image=p5270054medium...
^ another view of how close the wireless card is to the fan

is this a problem? should i look for another wireless device?
a b Ý World of Warcraft
June 1, 2009 1:49:12 AM

That shouldn't be a problem. It isn't touching, and isn't blocking the fan to any degree worth mentioning.
June 1, 2009 5:08:43 PM

It'll be fine, nice build! She'll be smoking in WoW.
June 2, 2009 2:34:21 AM

haha yeah i already installed WoW with her permission and tried it out. it is like playing a completely new game.

can't wait for her to try it herself. its going to be great. i might buy one for myself with the same exact build, maybe a few things different. i can't thank you guys enough.
June 2, 2009 11:57:01 PM

Good deal man, glad to hear it's up and running.
!