Gaming PC Under $1500 (You've Heard It All Before)

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Anytime, long-term project, though I'd like to have it within a month.

BUDGET RANGE: $1,500 or less would be great for this build, though the cheaper the better (without sacrificing performance)

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Mostly gaming, editing movies, Photoshop, web design, etc.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Won't be needing any peripherals, such as a mouse, keyboard or monitor.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: will be my primary source.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Intel CPU/motherboard would be great. As for other parts, I am looking mostly for performance, don't really have that much brand loyalty (this will be my first time building a PC by myself)

OVERCLOCKING: Light to moderate.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe in the future - see build, I'm not really sure if any of it would necessitate SLI or Xfire in the future.


ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: As a kid I've built a couple PC's with my dad, who is really into computers and tech and such. But now I'm getting into the PC building business with my first gaming rig. I play a ton of games, and would like to build a long-lasting PC that will be able to handle the games that'll come out in maybe 5 or 6 years from now. I have some experience building, but as for choosing parts, the last time I've even looked at parts was maybe 7 or 8 years ago when the personal computer was just starting to catch. I'm mainly looking for performance, reliability and the ability to withstand the tech changes that will surely take place in the next few years. I'm won't have a problem with swapping out parts in the future, either, so it would be great if you guys would help me find a very adaptable gaming PC build.

Will of course be using Windows 7 x64.

 As for the parts, here's a general list of the things I've looked at:

CPU: I've been consulting some earlier posts, and it seems for a gaming rig going i7 would be a waste (correct me if I'm wrong), so I'll skimp a bit here and get the i5 750 - $199.99

MOTHERBOARD: Not really sure what I should be using, any advice would be great. It seems Intel P55 would be the best choice here?

MEMORY: Again, not really familiar with the brands here. Anywhere between 4-12 GB would be great, though I doubt anything past 4 would be even remotely beneficial in gaming especially.

GPU: Ah, the video card. I'm okay with spending quite a bit here, something very high-end, such as the new Nvidia 295 or Sapphire? (Your recommendations here will be great).

HARD DRIVE: Nothing special, I really don't see why one would need any more than 500 GB. Standard Western Digital 500 GB Drive OR, depending on the price everything else comes to, a 300 GB 10k RPM Raptor drive would be great here.

POWER SUPPLY: Not sure how many watts I would need here. I did just a quick general calculation, and it seems ~500W would be enough?

DISK DRIVE: Would be great if you could recommend something here.

CASE: Ugh, yet another field I'm not too familiar with. I hear great things about the Antec 1200, but really, $150 on a case? I'm not trying to look like a computer ricer, something that'll fit everything and won't completely melt away would be great. Is buying a fan necessary here, or will it come with the case?

Well, that's about it for now. Any recommendations you can give me would really be awesome. I appreciate the help here. You guys are great!
13 answers Last reply
More about gaming 1500 heard before
  1. Also, was wondering if the Radeon HD 5970 was worth the extra $150. How much better would the performance be?

    And just some other thoughts:


    is purported to be a pretty good motherboard?
  2. This is what i would do

    Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM
    Item #: N82E16827118030
    Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
    Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
    Service Net Replacement Extended Warranty Plan
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    • 1 year: $6.99
    • 2 year: $11.99
    BELKIN F5D7010 Wireless G Notebook Card - Retail
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    Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
    -$20.00 Instant
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    COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
    Item #: N82E16811119197
    Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
    -$20.00 Instant

    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    Item #: N82E16822152181
    Return Policy: Standard Return Policy

    CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ... - Retail
    Item #: N82E16817139006
    Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
    -$10.00 Instant
    $10.00 Mail-in Rebate Card

    G.SKILL ECO 8GB (4 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7Q-8GBECO - Retail
    Item #: N82E16820231330
    Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy

    ASUS P7P55D-E Pro LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail
    Item #: N82E16813131621
    Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy

    Intel Core i7-860 Lynnfield 2.8GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor Model BX80605I7860 - Retail
    Item #: N82E16819115214
    Return Policy: CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
    -$10.00 Instant
    BELKIN F5D7010 Wireless G Notebook Card - Retail
    Item #: N82E16833314306
    Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
    -$20.00 Instant
    -$9.99 Saving

    COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus Intel Core i5 & Intel Core i7 compatible RR-B10-212P-G1 120mm "heatpipe direct contact" Long ... - Retail
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    • SAPPHIRE 100282SR Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card w/ATI Eyefinity - Retail
    Item #: N82E16814102857
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    Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
    Service Net Replacement Extended Warranty Plan
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    o 1 year: $29.99
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    • Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
    Item #: N82E16832116754
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    -$10.00 Instant
    -$20.00 Combo
    Subtotal: $1,424.89

    Now with the i7 860 it has HT that will help in photoshop work and 8 gigs of ram, If this is more of a hobby then work related i would just go for the i5 750 and 4 gigs of ram and bump up the GPU to a HD 5870

    feel free to ask question about anything
  3. Do you think it would be worth it to upgrade to a better GPU than the HD5870, say, 5970 or a Nvidia 295? And using an i7 would a x58 be better?
  4. For just gaming ? no a i5 750 is just fine, If you plan to use 3 GPU then i would say go X58 or if you plan to Xfire 2 5970s. For xfire two HD 5850 or 5870 the P55 would be fine although you will get maybe 3 to 5 % more proformence with the X58 mobos over the P55 in a 2 card xfire setup.

    The HD 5970 is the fastest GPU out ATM

    @ a rez of 1920x1080 Do i think its worth it to go with a HD 5970 over a HD 5870 no less i was trying to max out crysis

    HD 5970 vs GTX295 GTX uses alot more power to runs hotter and dont have DX11

    Review of the HD 5970 with some benchmarks also shows other cards
  5. Well, in terms of making the computer last a while, do you think the hd 5870 will be obsoleted in the next few years? while at least now it seems the hd 5970 will be able to last a little longer.
  6. With the way things go in 2 years it might not max out the games then but it should still do well i hade a 6800GT for 5 years just have to lower setting lose some AA etc to keep it going longer. Yes the HD 5970 would last longer i would think But then your going over your budget :)
  7. yeah, i had a 7900gs for 2 years and it was fine. i'd recommend the 5850 or 5870 tops, and just crossfire it in a year when the prices are more reasonable. imo 650 dollars for the 5970 or whatever is just simply ridiculous, and irrational according to today's games. personally im going to choose a 5850 and i5 750, it gets the job done. but then again, my beloved samsung monitor is 1680x1050 <3
  8. Do you think it'll be better to xfire later or just buy the more expensive GPU now?
  9. I think it would be better to buy a more expensive GPU now, only because not all games Scale the same in xfire and you will only get lets just say 30% more FPS with xfire so you would lose some of the performance from the 2nd GPU

    some reviews HD 5850/5770 [...] ,2433.html

    HD 5970
  10. So pretty much, from that last review, the nvidia 295 GTX is only slightly better than the HD 5870 for the price of $100. In my eyes that's not really worth it at all, so maybe I'll save up a little more and go for the HD 5970. Do you know when the prices of components usually drop? Mainly the expensive things - Mobo, GPU, CPU?
  11. I sure don't know about the prices. but i think the HD 5870 would be better then a GTX 295 resons the HD 5870 uses less power to run, runs cooler, Has DX11 and cost less the GTX295 is like 2 GPUs in 1 card like the HD 5970 so the GTX295 is like sli in one card.

    Its really up to up you could go with a HD 5870 and add one in 2 years if needed as prices will come down

    Or get the HD 5970 but that IMO would really be over kill at your rez ( your eyes can only see so many FPS anyways and 30 to 40 is very playable and if you run vsync you wont see more FPS then your monitors rez anyways
  12. That sounds good. I'll get the HD 5870, and we'll see in the future. It *should* be able to play all games coming out in the next couple years at max res on 1080p, right?
  13. Yes
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