APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: late October / early November 2009 BUDGET RANGE: around $1,500 SYSTEM USAGE: general gaming and internet COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: U.S.A. OVERCLOCKING: Yes, but this would be my first attempt. What's a conservative amount to overclock the i7 920, and would it aid performance in a meaningful and worthwhile way? SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Initially no, but I'd be open to crossfire (adding another GPU) down the road one day. MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1024x768 ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: This would be a little PC to sit next to the coffeetable, so I'd like to stay in the smallish case. I'd ultimately network it to my existing PC.
Case: Silverstone TJ08-S MicroATX Case ($099.99) Motherboard: Asus Rampage II GENE MicroATX ($219.99) Processor: Intel Core i7 920 Processor ($279.99) Memory: Kingston HyperX 6GB (3 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 RAM ($160.99) Video card: Sapphire Radeon HD 5850 1GB GDDR5 ($259.99) Power supply: Silverstone ST70F 700W Modular PSU ($149.99) Monitor: HP L1710 Silver 17" 5ms LCD Monitor ($129.99) Hard drive: WD Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb x 2 (two for a RAID setup) ($139.98) Optical drive: Sony Optiarc AD-7240S-0S Dual Layer DVD+/-RW SATA ($41.44) Keyboard: Enermax Aurora Premium KB007U-S Silver Keyboard ($45.99) Mouse: Verbatim 96675 Silver Tilt Wheel USB 2.4 Ghz Wireless Laser Mouse ($31.99)
What would make this better? Thanks in advance for your time and any help.
An i7 and 5850 are incredible overkill for any game at 1024x768 (or that monitor's native res, 1280x1024). If you're planning to game on an HDTV, those parts might come in handy. If you're not, I'd look into a cheaper build to save some money.
You might also wish to invest in a widescreen monitor--if readability for people with poor eyesight is an issue, something at 1366x768 might be good. And at any of these resolutions, overclocking the CPU won't help you any unless you're rendering, running scientific calculations, or something like that.
This calls for an i5 750 build, which will free up your budget for a better monitor that will go hand-in-hand with your 5850. Check Tecmo34's list of recommended builds to get an idea of what resolution requires what kind of parts. Link is below.