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New Gaming Computer ($1000ish Budget)

Last response: in Systems
December 23, 2009 12:45:52 AM

Dear Community,

This is the first time I will be attempted to build my own computer. I have about average computer knowledge and skills, which is a big reason I came to this website which looks wonderful for helping any level of user.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Probably this weekend after Christmas I would like to start ordering, if not sooner.
BUDGET RANGE: $1000-1100 (I will need a new monitor & keyboard)

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (I.E. World of Warcraft, Sims 3, eventually Starcraft II & D3, video editing, music, internet (wireless adapter would be nice), schoolwork


PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: A friend recommended, but I am open to any suggestions.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Inexperienced in this stuff so I'm open for recommendations.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe in future (I don't know too much about it to be honest.)

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Not very knowledgeable about monitors or resolutions, HD pref.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Prefer it to be somewhat quiet but still have good fans/cooling, since I will be using it on campus in my dorm. Would I need to look into liquid cooling or with the games I play it wouldn't be necessary to spend more on the cooling?

Thank you very much! =)

Best solution

December 23, 2009 2:46:16 AM

^ You wouldnt need liquid cooling as you will not be overclocking...
The stock heatsink would suffice...

And as for SLI/ Crossfire - It is a technology specific to the Nvidia(SLI) and ATI(Crossfire), where to get more graphics power, you add 2 more more graphic cards, connected by a bridge...
I dont think you would need to go SLI/ Crossfire because you dont seem to play demanding games...

I have given some choices for the CPU and the graphics card...choose which you feel would suffice to your needs...

Here is a config...

CPU + Mobo
X4 955 + ASUS 785G - High clock speed and extra cache

X4 925 + ASUS 785G - Comparitively lower clock speed(Actually you can easily increase the clock speed to match that 955 but you would have to overclock it though)

Athlon X4 620 + ASUS 785G - A very good budget Quad core but with lower clock speed and less amount of cache...Might be slow compared to the above quads in certain apps and games...

Crucial DDR3 1333MHz

CASE + PSU - As you will be going wiht a single graphic card at a time, the 500W PSU that comes wiht the case would suffice...
Antec III Sonata

HDD - I think 1TB would suffice
Samsung F3 1TB

LCD - Full HD(1080p)

Graphics card -
For the budget that you have, you can easily get this card -
HD 5850 - But I feel it might be an overkill for what you play...

You can get the HD 5770 instead...It can easily max out WoW and Sims 3 at 1080p resolution...And I dont think even the Starcraft II would be EDIT: a graphic intensive game...

DVD - ~$30 - Make sure you get a SATA drive

Keyboard - ~$20 - $25

Total - Comes under $1k(Including the X4 955 + HD 5850) or lower depending on what you choose...
December 23, 2009 4:38:01 AM

Thanks for the quick response! How come you recommend 4GB(2x2) System RAM rather than say 6 or 8GB? (I suppose this might not be as important for a pure gaming experience) I can push budget to about 1100-1150 max, but if I can go a little cheaper on the Graphics Card for what I play, would investing in this be even worth it?

Here are two 6GB options as examples.


G.SKILL 6GB (3 x 2GB)

I know I'm full of noob questions, I'm sorry.
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December 23, 2009 4:50:39 AM

^ Well for an LGA 1156 , you should either go with 4 or 8GB setup and not 6GB - Reason - If you populate 3 of the 4 slots, then you would loose Dual-Channel config...
6GB kits are mainly meant for LGA 1366 as the i7 9xx series have Tri-Channel memory controllers...

And currently I dont think you would need more than 4GB of memory for gaming(Actually you would have total of 5GB of RAM - Including 1GB from the graphics card)...So stick with 4GB...

And as for graphics card, I dont think you would need HD 5850...The reason I had specified that card is just to show that even a HD 5850 can fit your budget...
The HD 5850 will be a good option only if you play graphic intense games like FPS shooting and racing games where its full potential is utilized...

Another option is you can change the mobo to a crossfire supporting mobo like this one -

So you will have an option to add one more HD 5770 in crossfire later on if you feel the need for more graphics power...
But you would have to replace the PSU in that list to this...
Antec EA 650W
Case to go with it -
Antec 300

For your budget, you can go full guns out with the high-end CPU and graphics card...but I dont think it would be required for the things you do...
December 23, 2009 5:00:19 AM

IMO it would benefit you to do some more research before buying any parts. I realize you plan to purchase soon, but I don't think I could emphasize enough the importance of knowing what you need to know to build a system. I suggest you take a look at these at the very least:

I don't mean to discourage you, but you could probably build a PC more than sufficient for your needs for around $800.
December 23, 2009 5:24:45 PM

Thank you guys. I've been hesitant about the idea of building my own computer in the first place, but I know for sure it is the best way to maximize the price:p erformance. Is there any places I can look at that sell customized or gaming specific computers besides the mainstreams that say they're selling you a "gaming computer" (HP, Dell, Gateway, etc.).