I would suggest that you pick a i5-750 processor and Gigabyte P55A-UD3 motherboard as a starting point. Download the User's Manual from the Gigabyte website because it will walk you through installing all of the basic components onto the motherboard as well as loading the operating system and overclocking the processor.
Then you should Google "overclocking i5-750" and review all of the overclocking guides available for this processor. Once you become familar with the basics, then you can begin to assemble a lilst of components for your first build. Post that list back here on this forum, and there will be many people who will give you good advice.
Thanks but it sounds scary without even knowing the basic terminology. But I will start reading and asking here and try. My first question is about how much I should budget to start with. We bought a Dell that was advertised as a gaming puter and won't play didley. It was about $400.
This puter would be a dedicated gaming machine mostly so would you put on Windows XP or Windows 7 or what?
The cost of such a system depends on your needs. On what resolution are you playing? What games do you play or plan to (=futureproof)? What do you have or what parts do you need? etc.
As for the OS, Windows 7 64 bit is the way to go because it supports more than 3GB of memory which isn't the case with XP 32 bit. There are lots of other reasons why one or the other is better but I cba.
Gathering knowledge is usually quite easy, thanks to google. As dpaul8 said, reading your motherboard's manual is a good starting point, it will give you a basic overview. That's how I did it the first time and it worked! Don't be scared, building your own computer is not as hard as it sounds.
Assembling your own system is easy, 'understanding' what you assembled isn't.
Thanks I mostly only want to play first person shooter games and flight sims and not really much else. I live in the boondocks and do not have high speed internet so cannot play online. So really my gaming needs are little. I played Far Cry 1 on an older puter and that is the type of games I like.
Even if you cannot list any components for your first build, justing giving the group your basic information about your wants and needs will be enough to generate some good suggestions for you to consider. You can then go to Newegg.com (or other sites) and start to read about the individual components. Google is also great for turning up articles about your specific components, and will give you ideas about what trade-offs you can make regarding price and performance.
Thank you for taking the time to respond and I truly will regard your advise. Rather than upgrade my Slimline Dell, I have decided to swap puters with my wife and try to upgrade her's to see if it will work before I attempt to build my own from scratch. However I do want to learn enough now to build my own someday soon.
It is a Lenovo 3000 H230 with an Intel Pentium Dual Core Processor E5300 with 4 Gig DDR3, a 320 Gig Sata II drive, the graphics is an intel GMA X4500 (DX10) with Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit.
It only has a 280 watt power system so I need to replace that also.
In one of the forums, someone wrote:
"However, if you are only upgrading your existing video card it becomes important to select the interface based on the interface sported by your motherboard as installation of your new video card becomes impossible without matching interfaces. "
How do I know if a new vidow card matches ok with what is in my machine?
How do I tell what card will work with what I have and what would be the best card to buy for the money say up to $300?
What power system would you replace it with?
I can't thank everyone enough for all their help and advise and I am taking it slow this time so I don't screw up like I did with buying my Dell.
I am seriously trying to read and learn enough to put a total new build together in the near future but want to learn more now to be safe!
Pretty sure that is an integrated graphics card (part of the motherboard), I would advise you download CPU-Z, open the program and go to the mainboard tab, and it should say what motherboard it is. And what graphics interface is on there.
The other possible way for anyone to identify the interface is to take a photo of the motherboard. It would have to be a pretty high def photo tho.