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$500 AMD, multi-tasking, gaming, future rig

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December 21, 2009 7:45:55 PM

Hey all, I've been lurking for a loooong time now and finally decided to join and post a build I'm thinking of doing within a few weeks. I want to get all the quircks worked out for when I get the funds I can pull the trigger asap.

This will be my first build (technically) and I want to go AMD. I'm not looking to spend a lot of money ($500) but I want to be able to upgrade in the future and still have a solid machine. My main use is multi-tasking (internet, music, thunderbird, downloading...) , then gaming (nothing too demanding; MLB 2K10, Madden, Combat Arms...), then movies/tv.

Since I don't play any really demanding games I figure I'll reuse my Nvidia 7300GT video card (until I upgrade later down the road) but I'm open to buying a new VC if it's a good price or a good combo. Same goes with my 160 GB hdd, I'll reuse it but if I can get a cheap/good 300+GB hdd for a good price I'll do it. I'll be looking to get a VelociRaptor or SSD later down the road for the OS.

Basically I'm looking to get the most out of my money, quality parts, solid CPU and be able to upgrade in the future.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Within 2-3 weeks.

BUDGET RANGE: $500

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Multi-tasking, gaming, movies/tv.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, 160 GB HDD.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Mostly Newegg, but will use TigerDirect if cheap.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Quad-Core and 4 GB's of DDR3.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes in the future

CROSSFIRE: Maybe, but not a real concern.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Doesn't really matter, I have a 19" Acer.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Something thats not going to be outdated in a year or two, with room to upgrade and quad-core.

Thanks in advance and let me know if I'm missing anything.
December 21, 2009 9:40:18 PM

Do you need a monitor included in the $500 or are you saying you will use the 19inch you have?
December 21, 2009 9:58:40 PM

Future rig?... My answer would be waiting until you get at least 1000$, that would be a good and rig then...

You will not get much with that kind of money mostly because you aren't going to spend enough on the most important part of a gaming rig, the graphic card.

6 months ago, 4850 were selling for 80$ and some were even OC... but now, the price are up once again.

You should invest in at least a 4890.

Let's say...

Athlon II X4 620
OCZ or G.Skill 4GB of memory DDR3 1333 or 1600 (depends on the difference of price, you can buy the cheapest model it would not do much differences)
Radeon 4890 (some are at 170$, really the best priced card right now... but not DX11)
Gigabyte GA-MA770-UD3... (still I don't buy Gigabyte products personally due to bad experiences)
OCZ Z 650W power supply 80+ silver certified (better price and better efficiency than the Corsair 650HX)
Cooler Master Elite RC

Right now, you are breaking your budget if you buy the 4890, but if you keep your 7300GT for now, you are going to be around your budget.

A good 5850 when the availability will be there could be a really nice future proof setup... maybe too strong for your need, but it could make you play all the games you want for a good amount of time. If you change your monitor or decide to hook your computer on your HDTV 1080p, your 5850 will really makes your setup shine... if you decide to get a 5770, which I don't recommend due to it's price and it's performance, it will be harder to play in high resolutions.
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December 21, 2009 10:12:08 PM

Not gaming, more of an all-around machine.

I have my Acer 19" LCD which I'll reuse.

The main reason I don't want to get a new gpu is because I don't play the newest games (besides MLB 2k10) out there and if I do I don't mind turning down the settings for better game play.

I'd much rather save money and in a few months spend $100ish on a gpu, it just doesn't make sense to allocate that much of my money to a gpu now.
December 21, 2009 10:24:40 PM

Unfortunately, $100 is still a minimal gaming GPU. To play modern games at high settings on a 23+ inch LCD at 1920x1080 resolution you will need to spend twice that on a graphics card. (Thats a 5770, 4870, GTX 260 level graphics card)

Check the builds by usage sticky to get an idea of the parts you should be looking at for your price range.

Probably an AM3 motherboard with an Athlon II x4 620 would be what you are looking for.

December 21, 2009 10:31:58 PM

fannatick said:
Not gaming, more of an all-around machine.

I have my Acer 19" LCD which I'll reuse.

The main reason I don't want to get a new gpu is because I don't play the newest games (besides MLB 2k10) out there and if I do I don't mind turning down the settings for better game play.

I'd much rather save money and in a few months spend $100ish on a gpu, it just doesn't make sense to allocate that much of my money to a gpu now.


In that case, just go with this...

Athlon II X4 620
OCZ or G.Skill 4GB of generic memory DDR3 1333 or 1600
Gigabyte GA-MA770-UD3
OCZ Z 650W power supply 80+ silver certified or a Corsair 550VX (depending on the price)
COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW or Cooler Master Elite RC

You don't need more CPU power than this and try to find some generic ram. You don't need multiple PCIe slots so just go for the cheapest ATX motherboard you can find. In canada, it's this Gigabyte model GA-MA770-UD3. If you can find a Corsair 550VX for a cheap price, grab it... if the price is similar to the OCZ Z, forget it and get the later one. As for the Cooler Master case, it's simple, it's the cheapest one and the most popular, still I prefer the COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW.
December 21, 2009 10:42:39 PM


AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$99 -Free shipping


GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$80


Crucial 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Desktop Memory Model CT25664BA1067 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$78 for two sticks


LITE-ON Black 18X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM IDE DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDP118-04 - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$18

Antec Two Hundred Black ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
$80 with combo discount

Total = $350
December 21, 2009 11:03:12 PM

Mothmusic even found you the retail prices. You got a good idea now, but you should really invest in at least DDR3 1333 memory. The difference in price should be 10$ anyway.
December 22, 2009 12:18:26 AM


Everything here is from Newegg.ca

The Gigabyte board was $100, which is way to much for that mobo. The Asus is the same thing but $15 cheaper, and it has a $10 mail in rebate too.


AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$110


OCZ Gold Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G10664GK - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...
$74


ASUS M4A77TD AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$90 -$80 after rebate


Antec BP550 Plus 550W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.2 Modular Active PFC Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$70


SONY Black 18X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model DDU1681S-0B - OEM
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...
$20


Antec Two Hundred Black ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$60

Total = $424

===========================

Or


PEX Vortex 3620 SGCC / ABS ATX Mid Tower Gaming Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$42


ASRock M3A770DE AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$64

If you used these two parts, it would bring the build to $380, without sacrificing performance.

Whichever build you go with, $424 or $380 you will only be able to get one of these parts while staying under/close to your budget. The Seagate 1200.12 is one of the fastest hdd out right now, and the GTS 250 can play modern games at high settings at a 1600 res.


Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...
$80 -Free Shipping


Palit NE3TS25NFHD52 GeForce GTS 250 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
$120
December 22, 2009 3:56:29 PM

fannatick said:
Mothmusic - That's a good build but I'm thinking of maybe I should go with a Phenom II x4 for future performance. I would do this and I would reuse my video card which should allow me to sqeeze it in.

Here's what I have so far:

https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as...


Its not working for me. :( 

Do you think you could post the links to the parts instead?


December 22, 2009 8:05:12 PM

You cant link to things specific to your account. Your shopping cart is visible to only you. That link just takes me my my shopping cart.

If you cant make individual links, you have to share the list then make a link to the shared wishlist using the wishlist number, but the link has to look like a link when you view other peoples shared wishlists (not like when you view the wishlist from your saved wishlists).
December 23, 2009 12:19:21 PM

I would rather put most of my money towards the CPU and upgrade the memory, video card and hard drive later on.

This is what I was thinking:

LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 24X DVD-R SATA Black 24X DVD ($32)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

APEX Vortex 3620 SGCC / ABS ATX Mid Tower Gaming Computer Case ($40)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Western Digital Caviar Green WD5000AADS 500GB 32MB Cache SATA ($55)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

APEX AL-D500EXP 500W ATX12V ($45)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Rosewill RCR-IC002 74-in-1 USB 2.0 3.5" Internal Card Reader w/ USB port ($16)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Patriot G Series ‘Sector 5’ Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) ($90)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS M4A785-M AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
+
AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W ($220)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Roughly $500ish dollars. I think this would allow me to upgrade in the future and to be able to play most modern games (with a crappy video card) games with minimal settings.
December 23, 2009 4:08:53 PM

Caviar green is a power saver, low performance drive. For your boot drive you want a Samsung F3 500GB or Seagate 7200.12 500GB.

I have no idea how safe APEX power supplies are. Cheap power supplies have been known to malfunction and damage other components in the system. If you cant find a couple good professional reviews, stick to companies with reliable reputations like Corsair, Antec, PC Power&Cooling, Seasonic.

The motherboard in that combo is an AM2 motherboard which means it is old and will use old DDR2 RAM. You want a combo with an AM3 motherboard that will use DDR3 RAM.
December 23, 2009 4:41:01 PM

Thanks dndhatcher.

Yeah, I realized that hard drive wouldn't be good for my OS.

January 26, 2010 7:47:36 PM

:Bump: Ok, after more research I think I found a good starting point that will allow me to upgrade in the future. It's a low price upfront (which I need) but I have solid components for the future.

(Remember I don't need a hdd, monitor, OS, video card, or dvd-rw drive)

How does everything look?

Wish List:
Qty. Product Description Savings Total Price
1 Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811129042
Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy -$10.00 Instant
$69.99
$59.99

1 RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-530SS 530W ATX12V V2.2/ EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular LED Power Supply
Item #: N82E16817152028
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy -$5.00 Instant
$10.00 Mail-in Rebate
$54.98
$49.98

1 AMD Athlon II X4 630 Propus 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor Model ADX630WFGIBOX
Item #: N82E16819103704
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy $108.99

1 MSI 770-C45 AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813130228
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy $79.99

1 Crucial 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Desktop Memory Model CT25664BA1067
Item #: N82E16820148149
Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy -$3.00 Instant
$52.99
$49
January 28, 2010 1:43:01 PM

fannatick said:
:Bump: Ok, after more research I think I found a good starting point that will allow me to upgrade in the future. It's a low price upfront (which I need) but I have solid components for the future.

(Remember I don't need a hdd, monitor, OS, video card, or dvd-rw drive)

How does everything look?

Wish List:
Qty. Product Description Savings Total Price
1 Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811129042
Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy -$10.00 Instant
$69.99
$59.99

1 RAIDMAX HYBRID 2 RX-530SS 530W ATX12V V2.2/ EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Modular LED Power Supply
Item #: N82E16817152028
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy -$5.00 Instant
$10.00 Mail-in Rebate
$54.98
$49.98

1 AMD Athlon II X4 630 Propus 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor Model ADX630WFGIBOX
Item #: N82E16819103704
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy $108.99

1 MSI 770-C45 AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813130228
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy $79.99

1 Crucial 2GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1066 (PC3 8500) Desktop Memory Model CT25664BA1067
Item #: N82E16820148149
Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy -$3.00 Instant
$52.99
$49


The 630 is simply an overclocked 620. Get a 620 and do a mild overclock instead to save money.

Raidmax is a no no. Unless you look forward to your power supply blowing out and taking your motherboard with it. Instead try anything from Antec, Corsair, OCz, or SeaSonic.
May 3, 2010 3:29:49 PM

Ok I'm about to order the rest of my parts, I already ordered the CPU & Mobo. Let me know if there's anything I should change. Thanks.

CPU - AMD Athlon II X4 635 Propus 2.9GHz - Combo w/Mobo - $179.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mobo - ASUS M4A785TD-V EVO AM3 AMD 785G HDMI ATX - $ Included in CPU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ram - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 - $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD - SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA - $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD/CD - LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD - $22
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case - Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower - $65 w/shipping
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PS - Antec BP550 Plus 550W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.2 Modular Active PFC -$65 w/shipping
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

VC - GeForce 9500 512 mb - Already have



How does that look? Like I said, I already purchased the CPU/Mobo. The hard drive is simple, I don't need a lot of GB. What about the PSU, that's the only thing that I'm not 100% sure on. They had a combo of a Antec 300 & Antec 500W PS but I missed it.

I'm going to be ordering either later today or tomorrow morning so any help will be appreciated. Thanks.
May 4, 2010 2:12:07 PM

:BUMP:

I'm looking to order in the next hour or so...Thanks.

EDIT:

I had to add this Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB instead of the Samsung Spinpoint F3 because it's out of stock.

Best solution

May 4, 2010 2:46:58 PM
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Looks good
May 4, 2010 4:17:38 PM

Best answer selected by Fannatick.
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