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Sub 1k budget gaming rig, phenom II x2 550+5850, NEED ADVICE

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January 26, 2010 6:19:05 PM

The Screen Resolution: 1920x1080 on samsung SyncMaster 2243
The Goal: Aion, Fallout3, L4D2, Mass Effect 2, Crysis/Crysis Warhead, Dawn of War II on Max settings, gaming, Gaming GAMING!!!

The budget: $900-1000

The build:

LITE-ON Black 24X DVD Writer Black SATA Model iHAS424-98 LightScribe Support - Retail

COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Crucial Ballistix Tracer 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Desktop Memory w/ LEDs Model BL2KIT25664TB1337 - Retail

AMD Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition Callisto 3.1GHz Socket AM3 80W Dual-Core Processor Model HDZ550WFGIBOX - Retail

OCZ StealthXStream OCZ700SXS 700W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

SAPPHIRE 100282SR Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card w/ATI Eyefinity - Retail

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM

The Grand Total with tax and shipping comes out to 996.24, THEN i take off $35 in rebates for a Final Total of 961.24! woohoo


Main concerns: When i looked at the mobo's specs it states it goes with am3 socket, but then under it it specifically states phenom II x4 and phenom II x3...will my phenom II x2 not work with this mobo?

Also, i don't want my 550 to bottleneck my 5850. From what I have read on forums and benchmark tests at higher resolutions the gpu takes over and the cpu will not bottleneck my 5850's performance...is this true?

Changes: I could go for a cheaper case, i just like the way the cooler master looks/what you get for sub 100...but its a bit too close to 100 bucks if you know what i mean.

I know the seagates/samsungs hdd's are a bit faster but the western digital's are getting better reviews. But i want to hear more about hdd's cuz i dont really know much about them in general.

Allrighty then, hit me with your comments/suggestions!!! :pt1cable:  :pt1cable:  :pt1cable: 
a b 4 Gaming
January 26, 2010 6:26:34 PM

The board will be fine.

The CPU almost never the bottleneck. You might want to consider a triple core though. Articles here on Tom's have shown that you get a lot of benefit from increasing the number of cores from 2 to 3, but almost nothing from 3 to 4.

Other good cases are the Antec 900 and HAF 922 (it's at $90 right now). After that, you might be getting a little small for the bigger cards.

Are these user reviews? Don't trust them. The Spinpoints are excellent. I can vouch for them myself. That WD is third in a three hose race behind both the Spinpoints and Seagate 7200.12.

Everything looks good.
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January 26, 2010 6:41:12 PM

Thanks for the quick reply Admiral!

What are your guy's view on the COOLER MASTER Elite RC-310-BWN1-GP Black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail ?

It drops my total to 902.94!
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January 26, 2010 7:19:06 PM

Yea I should link the prices next time. Everything is combo'd if possible, I have that 5850/win7 combo. The rc-690 case is the one i have in my original build, and i guess i should dish out a bit more. After looking at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5IfHjTmAPlQ it seems that the rc-310 is skimping on not only fans but sports no cable management areas, which will only make cooling that much more difficult

So even though http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... has a lower clock speed it will be better than the 550 stock/no oc?
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a b 4 Gaming
January 26, 2010 7:19:17 PM

I read in a review earlier today that the new Phenom II X2 555 is going to be the same price as the 550, while being slightly faster and easier to OC. I know it's not available on newegg atm, and if it doesn't destroy any of your combos and it does turn out to be the same price, then you should probably get that if it comes into stock before you buy. It will be compatible with that motherboard as well. If you want to check CPU compatibility the best way is to go to the motherboard's website and check the CPU support list on there.
Agree about the Antec 300.
However, according to this page http://www.anandtech.com/bench/default.aspx?p=83&p2=97 I would question whether the the 720 (if that's the one that was mentioned) is 'substantially' better than a 550, although I would think that it is a happy medium between CPU intensive tasks and gaming. I concede that to get a better picture of each chips performance level it would be better to look at a whole article that shows charts comparing them.
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January 26, 2010 7:47:09 PM

Silvune: Was it the battle of the dual core titans article that you were looking at? That article gave me the idea of making this rig because of the high fps of that build during gaming. Maybe i should hold out a bit for the 555 its only 10 bucks more.
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January 27, 2010 2:59:38 AM

Best answer selected by dimmzeta73.
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January 29, 2010 5:55:57 AM

You should try gigabyte motherboard GA-MA 78 US 2H. It will handle your 550 processor and HD 5870 very well.
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January 31, 2010 6:59:20 PM

thanks for the tip ill check that mobo out
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