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Need help - Building a gaming PC

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October 4, 2009 4:46:24 PM

Hello, I've had PCs for over 10yrs, I've always built them through Dell. I've installed upgrades myself, new graphics cards, more RAM etc. I've never built a system from scratch.

I've been researching online but honestly there's so much information out there I'm finding it difficult to pin down specifics. I've found what I've read on this site to be very helpful and some other folks have recommended it.

Here's what I'm aiming for:

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Within 3 months

BUDGET RANGE: $1500-$2000

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (Champions Online), watching movies/TV, regular internet surfing, some office work (Would need MS Office)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: I have a nice Dell widescreen monitor, 1680x1050 resolution. I have a wireless logitech mouse, a wireless Microsoft keyboard, I also have Altec Lansing speakers, 4 speakers and a sub-woofer. They came with my current system, they work just fine so I don't feel the need to get new ones.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg/Amazon

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: US

PARTS PREFERENCES: I would prefer in Intel CPU, I've always had nVidia graphics cards but I'd be willing to change

OVERCLOCKING: Yes - Never done it

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Not entirely sure what this means

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Would like a quiet PC, liquid cooling sounds awesome. I'm excited about learning how to build and am willing to put in the time to figure out the best methods.

More about : building gaming

October 4, 2009 5:46:01 PM

jmohsin said:
Hello, I've had PCs for over 10yrs, I've always built them through Dell. I've installed upgrades myself, new graphics cards, more RAM etc. I've never built a system from scratch.

I've been researching online but honestly there's so much information out there I'm finding it difficult to pin down specifics. I've found what I've read on this site to be very helpful and some other folks have recommended it.

Here's what I'm aiming for:

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Within 3 months

BUDGET RANGE: $1500-$2000

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (Champions Online), watching movies/TV, regular internet surfing, some office work (Would need MS Office)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: I have a nice Dell widescreen monitor, 1680x1050 resolution. I have a wireless logitech mouse, a wireless Microsoft keyboard, I also have Altec Lansing speakers, 4 speakers and a sub-woofer. They came with my current system, they work just fine so I don't feel the need to get new ones.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg/Amazon

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: US

PARTS PREFERENCES: I would prefer in Intel CPU, I've always had nVidia graphics cards but I'd be willing to change

OVERCLOCKING: Yes - Never done it

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Not entirely sure what this means

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Would like a quiet PC, liquid cooling sounds awesome. I'm excited about learning how to build and am willing to put in the time to figure out the best methods.



3 Months is along way away and alot can happen by then. I would spend the time reading all i can on how to build a PC, and post back when your within a few weeks to buy.

Water cooling really is not worth it less your trying to get the most out of the CPU GPU ect and will set you back about 300 to 400, a good HSF will be fine.

I would say a nice i5 setup would be good for you and a HD5850 atm but in 3 months Nividia might release new cards.

and you will only need about 1200 of that budget to get a very nice setup

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October 4, 2009 6:41:57 PM

SLI and crossfire are running multiple graphics cards. SLI is Nvidia's name fore it and crossfire is ATIs.
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October 5, 2009 3:36:55 AM

At the moment, Intel has the best quad core processor on the market but ATI has the best single GPU card. In 3 months, this may change and the prices will probably fall with new GPUs coming out from Nvidia. So, its best to ask for suggestions a week or so before you plan to buy the parts.
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October 5, 2009 3:59:37 AM

These are all good suggestions. I also would recommend picking up a few magazines, there are several that almost always have DIY articles.

Maximum PC is good, my favorite is CPU magazine because it has a lot of modding tips and ideas. Anyway I like the i5 and HD 5850, for now.
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October 5, 2009 4:14:47 AM

Niklas_13 said:
3 Months is along way away and alot can happen by then. I would spend the time reading all i can on how to build a PC, and post back when your within a few weeks to buy.

Water cooling really is not worth it less your trying to get the most out of the CPU GPU ect and will set you back about 300 to 400, a good HSF will be fine.

I would say a nice i5 setup would be good for you and a HD5850 atm but in 3 months Nividia might release new cards.

and you will only need about 1200 of that budget to get a very nice setup


You are incorrect, he does not need more than a 4870 for 1680x1050. Funny you suggested 5850.
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October 5, 2009 4:16:43 AM

buzznut said:
These are all good suggestions. I also would recommend picking up a few magazines, there are several that almost always have DIY articles.

Maximum PC is good, my favorite is CPU magazine because it has a lot of modding tips and ideas. Anyway I like the i5 and HD 5850, for now.


Why spend money on magazines when you can read it on the Internet like this site. Plus 5850 is overkill for 1680x1050.
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October 5, 2009 12:06:57 PM

overshocks said:
You are incorrect, he does not need more than a 4870 for 1680x1050. Funny you suggested 5850.


Well a HD5850 on a rez of 1920x1200 reviews show about 32 FPS on avg for VHD 32 FPS i will take that its playable. The card and his budget match so why would i give him advice to buy a card he will have to lower details and turn off some eye candy to play the game ? I think atm the HD5850 is the best bang for the buck and fits his budget and he will get many years off that card.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-5850,2433...

Sorry its my option but i dont think a 4870 is a good decession when the OP has a budget and it fits in they. I would be pissed off if i could of hade a card that i can max all games but someone told me to buy a card i will have to lower setting in.

I know not all games are demanding like crysis but what about nwer games ect.
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October 5, 2009 4:56:42 PM

His previous computer lasted 10 years so recommend for longevity. Recommend a 5850 so the GPU is good for DX11 in a couple years and also for replacing the monitor with a higher resolution sometime in the future. Dont recommend something adequite now that will have to be replaced in a few years when the monitor breaks or new games come out.
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October 6, 2009 12:30:11 AM

dndhatcher said:
His previous computer lasted 10 years so recommend for longevity. Recommend a 5850 so the GPU is good for DX11 in a couple years and also for replacing the monitor with a higher resolution sometime in the future. Dont recommend something adequite now that will have to be replaced in a few years when the monitor breaks or new games come out.


+1 I agree 100%
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October 6, 2009 3:06:42 AM

I would definitely prefer to go for something higher end if it means it will last longer. Even if it is overkill for my current configuration, I'm more likely to get a better monitor somewhere down the line, than want to upgrade my graphics card again.

I'm currently in the process of trying to decide whether to expedite my purchase so I have the system sooner or wait a few months to see what's coming. Any preferences? Are the nVidia cards going to be significantly different from what I could get now?
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October 6, 2009 5:26:17 PM

jmohsin said:
Are the nVidia cards going to be significantly different from what I could get now?

Unfortunately, Nvidia has been able to keep the 300 series fairly secret. They keep talking about GPGPU and CUDA instead of DX11 and GPU power. They talk like they are going into competition against intel and AMD instead of ATI.
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