$600 gaming upgrade for friend.

BUDGET RANGE: approximately 600. can maybe go a little higher but not much.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, movies, internet (typical stuff)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Monitor, keyboard, mouse, hard drive, OS, PSU


PARTS PREFERENCES: intel CPU, nvidia gpu (but can go ati if persuaded)

OVERCLOCKING: probably some, but not a whole lot SLI OR CROSSFIRE: no

MONITOR RESOLUTION: I believe he has a 1280x1024 resolution monitor. he may be upgrading that in a few months.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Friend told me he wanted a new video card for his somewhat aging HP desktop. I convinced him his best bet would just be to upgrade a bunch of his stuff, as his cpu would be a nice bottleneck and he might not be able to throw a new bigger gpu in his case anyways. I need to get for him the following. CPU, GPU, Mobo, Ram, and a case. I have been doing a lot of research for my build coming up in a couple months, so I have a pretty good idea of what to look for. and ive been reading plenty of articles on this great site as well to find the best value as well. I have the following parts so far.

Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Retail

EVGA 896-P3-1255-AR GeForce GTX 260 Core 216 896MB 448-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-8500CL5D-4GBPK - Retail

im unsure of gskill memory having never used it before. he bought a power supply earlier in the year which should be more than capable of handling these parts. And also, the one thing i am not sure about is what type of case to get. It's been a while since I had to get a new one, so i'm really not sure if i need to get him a full size tower or a mid size tower. thanks in advance for the help guys! :D
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More about gaming upgrade friend
  1. any thoughts? ^_^
  2. you should probably consider going with an am3 platform to prevent having any issues with upgrades in the future because 775 is a dead platform.
  3. hes pretty dead set on intel. hes not a fan of amd. i dont believe hes too concerned with being able to upgrade, as i think he just wants to put down some cash to get a solid system that will last him a couple years. at which point he will probably just go all out and get something really nice.
  4. Stronger processor, and GPU for $88 less
    You have to pay $25 more for DDR3 ram but in the end it is still cheaper by $63 not counting rebates, its still $18 cheaper even if you count the MIRs on the intel build.
  5. I personally think you'd be better off with an AMD socket am3 rig with a phenom 2 maybe a 720 black edition or something to that effect to allow greater upgradeability in the future. Not that socket 775 from intel is not decent, but since they aren't going any further with it, socket 775 is going to be a dead end.

    Phenom 2 720 BE--$120


    This may be more of a budget board, but seems good and has good reviews

    ASRock M3A780GXH/128M AM3 AMD 780G HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard--90 bucks, and crossfire capable too.


    4 gb ddr3 1600 ram-75


    Case I'd reccomend at least a mid tower, if you want to go bigger that's up to you.

    Here's what I personally have. It holds my 9600 gt ok as long as no hard drives are in the way.


    With those components you'd be at 325.

    Here's another card to consider as well. Not 100% sure how it compares to the Nvidia.


    If you want to save some cash, here's this for 50 bucks less. Still potent, but if you want to see what dx11 brings it may be a good route.


    If you went with this combo you'd be looking at 475 + shipping. Leaving you room for a better processor, new hard drive, whatever. Or have your friend pocket the cash and get new games. But I think with something along these lines, you would get good performance, and have a lot better upgrade path down the line.
  6. Btw the 720 is fairly even in performance with the e8400. If you go with the 945 or something you'd have an even stronger system. Check this review out for some ideas how it compares. Your friend may be pleasantly suprised.


    They even include the e8400 for comparison sake on some tests. But from what I'm seeing you can almost get the performance of an i7 on these higher end amd rigs. But show this thread to your friend and see what he thinks.
  7. ive already talked to him about possibly going with an AMD system. Hes rather insistent on getting an intel setup. i will talk to him again tomorrow, but i dont know... i just dont think he wants to build AMD.
  8. Also see about convincing him into getting an ATI GPU as an HD 4890 costs the same as that GTX260 but performs on par with a GTX275, and you can get an HD 4870 which is equivilant to the GTX260 which is enough to run every game on max on 1280x1024 easily for $55 cheaper.
  9. If you can get him to consider AMD then it will be a big help in the future for upgrades.
  10. allright, I will talk to him today at work and see what I can do. I told him before that AMD might be a better option considering his budget for it, so I'll see what he has to say. i'll post back in here after work today. thanks for the help so far guys :)
  11. The parts you've listed are almost my system.....except I got the GTS250oc....
    If he's dead set against AMD then what you have is very decent indeed..
    The only thing I would change is the ram..I use OCZ because trust their reliability.
  12. Allright. I talked with him a bit trying to get him to get the AMD system. even tried to tell him if hes set on intel to wait a few weeks for when i5 supposedly comes out. I think he wants to build intel and build it now. is there anything I should change with the setup i have?
  13. You don't need to change anything unless you want to buy a quad, a different brand of memory, or a different GPU.
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