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Building a budget (500 - 600) gaming system, looking for opinions

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November 24, 2009 3:52:55 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Middle of December, after the 15th. BUDGET RANGE: 500 - 600. Told the good woman I wouldn't go higher than that, must keep my word.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, general internet surfing, kids use it, etc.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: I'm reusing my monitor, sound card, mouse, keyboard, speakers, etc. Just need the tower.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Prefer Newegg and Tigerdirect, am open to any others that show a good record and quality price. COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA, Washington State.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Prefer to use AMD, can be swayed one way or the other. Looking for a quad core, absolutely.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes. SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Not at this time as it appears 1 quality card will be better than 2 mid-range cards. Might in the future with 2 quality cards.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1080

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Don't care what the case looks like.

Here is the current build of what I've researched.

61.99 | Motherboard
ASRock M3A770DE AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

95.99 | Ram (4 Gigs)
OCZ Special Ops Urban Elite 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3SOU16004GK - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

175.00 | Processor
AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

169.99 | Video Card
SAPPHIRE 100283L Radeon HD 5770 (Juniper XT) 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductReview.aspx?Item=1...(keywords)&Page=2


69.99 | Powersupply
RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-730SS 730W ATX12V V2.2/ EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular Modular LED Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

59.99 | Hard Drive
Western Digital Caviar Green WD6400AACS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total: 627.94

Obviously I'm very close to within range, but that does not include tax or shipping so I need to knock something down. I feel knocking down the processor and video card would be harmful, but I'm obviously not fully confident or I wouldn't post here.

I'm curious of your opinion on which parts I can take in another direction to save some bucks but not kill performance. Would a cheaper video card still have the same bang for my buck? I'm just looking for a little help and I greatly appreciate you looking at this.
November 24, 2009 5:48:26 PM

Raidmax is a horrible power supply company. That PSU in particular claims over 85% efficiency but doesnt have 80+ certification so it must fluctuate all over the place at different load levels. Inconsistent power is really bad in a PC.

OCZ Fatal1ty 550W is a good deal at newegg right now.
Antec earthwatts 500W and Corsair 450VX would be others to consider.


I didnt see a case listed? My favorite at low end is the Antec 300 illusion (great black friday deal) or the Coolermaster CM690


At your budget I would not get the 955. For almost all gaming peformance the triple core CPUs match quads. The Athlon IIx3 435 for $90 or PhenomIIx3 720 for $120 make more sense to me. Maybe use the money to get a better motherboard that would allow crossfiring a second 5770 in the future (will be around $110 for the MB). That way in the future you could swap out for a quad CPU and get a second 5770 to have a really strong gaming machine.
!