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$1,000 Gaming PC (Unexperienced Builder)

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July 10, 2009 5:30:06 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: When ready.

BUDGET RANGE: US $ 900-1100

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, School/Office work, Surfing the net, Watching videos

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, sound card, wireless lan card

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com (or where cheapest)

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel CPU

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe, not too informed in this process

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe, if I ever come about extra money to purchase another graphics card

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1280 x 1024 (not too sure right now, will edit later and post for certainty)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I would love a quiet PC, and the best performing for the price. I was really leaning to purchasing off of IBUYPOWER.com, but, as I started to read off the financial benefits of putting it together myself, I am moved to give it a try. Here are the spec's of the PC I put together on IBUYPOWER and would love something like this or better:

Intel Core i7 Configurator


Case ( CoolerMaster HAF 922 Mid Tower Gaming Case - Black )

Processor ( Intel® Core™ i7 920 Processor (4x 2.66GHz/8MB L3 Cache) )

Motherboard ( Asus P6T Intel X58 Chipset CrossFire and SLI Supported w/7.1 Sound, Triple-Channel DDR3, Gb LAN, S-ATA Raid, USB 2.0, 3-Way SLI PCI-E MB - 3-Way SLI )

Memory ( 6 GB [2 GB X3] DDR3-1333 Triple Memory Module - Corsair Value or Major Brand )

Video Card ( NVIDIA GeForce 9800GT PCI-Express x16 - 1GB - Single Card )

Power Supply ( 650 Watt -- Casegears ECO-Element 80 Plus Certificated High Efficiency Power Supply - SLI Ready )

Processor Cooling ( Coolermaster V8 CPU Cooling Fan System )

Hard Drive ( 500 GB HARD DRIVE - [Serial-ATA-II, 3Gb, 7200 RPM, 16M Cache] )

2nd Optical Drive ( [** Special !!! ***] LG 22X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive - Black )

Sound Card ( 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard )

Network Card ( Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100) )

Operating System ( None- Pre-formatted Hard Drive Only )

Meter Display ( Thermal Temperature LCD Display - Black )

Final price: $1090.00 (Is this a reasonable price for the products?)
July 10, 2009 5:32:50 PM

change the PSU to a good make like PCP&C or corsair.

and at least get a 4850 since it's an i7 build.
July 10, 2009 5:39:43 PM

If I were spending $1000 and gaming was listed as a primary purpose of the machine, I would get a better GPU than the 9800GT.

+1 to the PSU suggestions.
Related resources
July 10, 2009 6:16:37 PM

This might be helpful to give you guys where I'm leaning. Fill in the gaps where you see fit and feel free to change any of my poor choices.

CPU: Intel i7 920 - $279.99


Motherboard: ASUS P6T LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - $249.99


Memory: OCZ Platinum 6GB - $119.99


Power Supply: ??

Case: Coolermaster HAF 922 - $116.99


Video Card: EVGA GTX 260 core 216 overclocked - $184.99


CPU Cooling: Coolermaster V8 - $59.47


Hard Drive: ??

Meter Display: ?? Such as one provided by IBUYPOWER (Meter Display ( Thermal Temperature LCD Display - Black )


If you have any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate it. I am always open to suggestions that would benefit economically or enhance the performance within my budget.
July 10, 2009 6:21:35 PM

PSU: PCP&C or Corsair 750w PSU.

HDD: WDC black 640GB

Meter display: no hardware, a little program called realtemp and another one called rivatuner.
July 10, 2009 6:36:10 PM

This $949.00.

Case: Antec p180 - $75
CPU - i7 920 - $229
MOBO: Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4P - $207
CPU Cooler: Sunbeam 120mm w/ TX2 compound - $40
RAM: OCZ Platinum 6GB - $100
PSU: Corsair 750tx - $110
GPU: HIS HD4890 - $199
HDD: WD Caviar Black 640gb - $75
DVD: LG 22x - $24
OS: Windows 7 RC Free
July 10, 2009 7:02:31 PM

elwaynum1 said:
This might be helpful to give you guys where I'm leaning. Fill in the gaps where you see fit and feel free to change any of my poor choices.

CPU: Intel i7 920 - $279.99


Motherboard: ASUS P6T LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard - $249.99


Memory: OCZ Platinum 6GB - $119.99


Power Supply: ??

Case: Coolermaster HAF 922 - $116.99


Video Card: EVGA GTX 260 core 216 overclocked - $184.99


CPU Cooling: Coolermaster V8 - $59.47


Hard Drive: ??

Meter Display: ?? Such as one provided by IBUYPOWER (Meter Display ( Thermal Temperature LCD Display - Black )


If you have any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate it. I am always open to suggestions that would benefit economically or enhance the performance within my budget.

cpu/mobo/ram are good.

For a cheaper case with very good cooling, look at the Antec 300:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I think you can do better on the cooler. read this cooler roundup review:
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

The xigmatek dark night is cheaper and better:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

As a student, you might be eligible for DISCOUNTED academic pricing on Vista. Otherwise jump on the pre-order deal on windows-7 at half price. The deal closes on july 11.

A 600+ psu from corsair or PC p&C will be sufficient, certainly not more than 750.

For gaming, the vga card is all important. the GTX260 is good, but see if the savings can get you to the GTX275 or 4890.

Forget the meter display, use speedfan or other software.

---good luck---
July 10, 2009 8:13:17 PM

geofelt said:
cpu/mobo/ram are good.

For a cheaper case with very good cooling, look at the Antec 300:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I think you can do better on the cooler. read this cooler roundup review:
http://benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_conten...

The xigmatek dark night is cheaper and better:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

As a student, you might be eligible for DISCOUNTED academic pricing on Vista. Otherwise jump on the pre-order deal on windows-7 at half price. The deal closes on july 11.

A 600+ psu from corsair or PC p&C will be sufficient, certainly not more than 750.

For gaming, the vga card is all important. the GTX260 is good, but see if the savings can get you to the GTX275 or 4890.

Forget the meter display, use speedfan or other software.

---good luck---



Thanks for your input. I just have a question regarding the xigmatek cpu cooling; is it going to be noisier than the V8? If it is a nominal difference, I will take the cheaper one for sure..
July 10, 2009 8:25:03 PM

elwaynum1 said:
Thanks for your input. I just have a question regarding the xigmatek cpu cooling; is it going to be noisier than the V8? If it is a nominal difference, I will take the cheaper one for sure..


The noise is primarily determined by the speed of the cooling fan. That is under your control. A fan at 800 rpm is virtually silent. <1200 is quiet, at >1800 rpm it will be noisy.
Both units have fans that operate in the 800 to 2000 rpm range.

You trade off cooling capacity vs. fan speed(ie: noise)
If you are looking at a modest overclock, there should be no noise issue.

A second order consideration is the quality of the noise from the fan, particularly in the quieter ranges.
July 10, 2009 8:25:58 PM

V8's probably louder, and if the xiggy is too loud, just swap the fan out for an akasa apache or a noctua 1200rpm one.
July 10, 2009 10:08:40 PM

evongugg said:
This $949.00.

Case: Antec p180 - $75
CPU - i7 920 - $229
MOBO: Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4P - $207
CPU Cooler: Sunbeam 120mm w/ TX2 compound - $40
RAM: OCZ Platinum 6GB - $100
PSU: Corsair 750tx - $110
GPU: HIS HD4890 - $199
HDD: WD Caviar Black 640gb - $75
DVD: LG 22x - $24
OS: Windows 7 RC Free



Where exactly are you getting your prices from? I can't seem to get those items for the prices you listed on newegg.com
July 11, 2009 1:30:01 PM

If you are building a gaming rig on a budget of ~ $1000, it doesn't make too much sense to configure it around the core i7 cpu and motherboard platform. You've already spent more than half of the money - $550 on these two items. The video cards are what makes a good gaming rig and a 'puter with a $110 card will get you nowhere fast. I would swap out the cpu for a core 2 duo or amd processor and dump $300-$400 into sli or crossfire cards to make this a real gaming system.
July 11, 2009 8:46:38 PM

How does this look as a final product?


OCZ Platinum 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory
$119.99

Intel Core i7 920 Nehalem 2.66GHz LGA 1366 130W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80601920
$279.99

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM
$69.99

COOLER MASTER RS-700-AMBA-D3 700W ATX12V V2.3 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
$129.99

ASUS P6T LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard
$249.99

Arctic Silver ACN-60ML (2-PC-SET) Thermal material Remover & Surface Purifier - OEM
$5.99

XFX HD-489A-ZDFC Radeon HD 4890 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card
$199.99

COOLER MASTER HAF 932 RC-932-KKN1-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case
$144.99

XIGMATEK Dark Knight-S1283V 120mm Long Life Bearing CPU Cooler
$39.98

Combo discounts = -$77.00

Subtotal $1,163.90
Tax $0.00
UPS Ground $12.79
Order Total $1,176.69
July 12, 2009 7:58:42 AM

I know you wanted an intel build but if your going on a 1k budget it and gaming is your main thing it may be better to look at the AMD processors from what I remember these things still went toe to toe with Intel in gaming (though not as good for other purposes) you can check the reviews in toms hardware they have one comparing the 720be to the I7 processors (I think its either under phenom II review or the 720be or something).

Heres the AMD 720BE
tri-core, worth a look at, especially since its $205 ($190 with mail in) for processor and motherboard, and a few other little goodies that arn't worth mentioning

Combo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

If that doesnt work heres the link to processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If you go this route you should be able to free up an easy $200-300 for something else to spend it on. Plus I think you probably benefit more from more GPU power than CPU at this point.

Just thought I throw in my 2 cents. (though if you do go AMD look at that mobo more closely to make sure its what you want as I havent looked into that mobo)

EDITED IN
I think this is the article I was talking about (you can probably get a better idea if you search google)
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/socket-am3-phenom,2...
July 12, 2009 8:37:57 AM

Now onto other things other than the whole processor thing.

Id personally swap out the PSU for something of better quality
PC Power & Cooling S75QB 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Than I just have a small comment on the case, it looks quite nice and everything but if your looking for something silent make sure the parts you have inside of it are silent as well. Because a case that has large fans such as that and isnt as closed up won't dampen the noise you hear like a lot of other cases will do, so if you have a noisy GPU fan it may drive you insane.
July 31, 2009 10:48:45 AM

What about your OS?
July 31, 2009 2:43:47 PM

You do not need the two piece cleaning kit from arctic silver. Isopropyl alcohol works just fine. I use a paper coffee filter because of it's lint-free properties. A small tube of as-5 or mx-2 might be in order if you may want to remount the cooler or don't want the tim supplied with the cooler.

I also think the PC P&C or corsair 750 watt psu's are better.
July 31, 2009 3:07:59 PM

Im also building myself a new gaming rig based on the i7 cpu... the build im coming up with is about the same as yours cept for mobo and such but this looks like a solid build for sure... if you plan on upgrading to sli gpus then the gtx 260 is a good choice... also just oc the i7 to 3.2 or so.. it wont overheat and will run stable also, im going to oc mine to about 3.5, check the temp and stability and make adjustments as needed. good luck
!