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New Build over time $500-750

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February 2, 2010 9:41:01 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Complete within a month

BUDGET RANGE: 500-750 can be flexible if its really worth the extra money After Rebates

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, Multi tasking, Music, School,

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Have a BFG 550 WATT, BFG GeForce GTS 250 Video Card - 1024MB GDDR3, PCI Express 2.0, (2) Dual Link DVI, SLI Ready, Keyboard.
Have a mouse and monitor but could use a new one if any1 has suggestions.
Any part useable from old http://support.gateway.com/s/PC/R/1009103/1009103sp2.sh...

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: No preference
ORIGIN: Washington, USA

PARTS PREFERENCES: preferably full tower. Ive always been an Intel fan boy but have heard that AMD is a better path to take at this price range so i can be flexible there.

OVERCLOCKING: Light to Moderate

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: possibly in the future


ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I would like it to be flexible to future upgrade.
Been doing a lot of reading but everyone seems to have there own opinions. Any help or advise would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

More about : build time 500 750

February 3, 2010 12:35:07 AM

Does that "550W" BFG have a little voltage switch on it, or is it one of the newer full range active PFC models? The newer ones have reviewed favorably.
Since you're willing to build this over time, and already have a passable video card (especially at lower resolutions; what's your old monitor?) you may be able to fit an Intel i5 or i7 into your budget. If you do that though, you might need to upgrade your PSU when you upgrade your video card. If that's the case, you might do better to start out with a decent PSU, opting for a cheaper AMD AM3 build.
I'm off to bed (5:00a comes early!) but hopefully shortstuff_mt, skora, Mad_Admiral, Dirt_Mountain, Proximon, or one of the other regular builders is up and lively. Sorry if I left off anyone obvious (or less so), I'm already a little unplugged I think...
February 3, 2010 1:16:03 AM

Onus said:
Does that "550W" BFG have a little voltage switch on it, or is it one of the newer full range active PFC models? The newer ones have reviewed favorably.
Since you're willing to build this over time, and already have a passable video card (especially at lower resolutions; what's your old monitor?) you may be able to fit an Intel i5 or i7 into your budget. If you do that though, you might need to upgrade your PSU when you upgrade your video card. If that's the case, you might do better to start out with a decent PSU, opting for a cheaper AMD AM3 build.
I'm off to bed (5:00a comes early!) but hopefully shortstuff_mt, skora, Mad_Admiral, Dirt_Mountain, Proximon, or one of the other regular builders is up and lively. Sorry if I left off anyone obvious (or less so), I'm already a little unplugged I think...



It is one with the little voltage switch.
the monitor is 17" max res 1280x1024
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February 3, 2010 8:34:01 AM

You can probably use it with your GTS250, but for anything more I would replace it. Look for full range active PFC (no little voltage switch) and 80+ certification to be sure of getting a current design that is able to output what's on its label, and do it efficiently (80Plus tests at a low ambient temperature, but the PSU is run for long enough that it should be able to warm up). Antec, Corsair, PC Power & Cooling, Seasonic, and Enermax are among the better brands.
February 3, 2010 1:40:36 PM

Your resolution is low enough that your GTS250 should be just fine until you replace your monitor.
Do you want this PC to be essentially "as good as it gets" (i.e. minimal future upgrades) as soon as it is built, or would you be interested in building something now for lower initial cost, then putting another $300 or so into it in another 3-4 months, PLUS the cost of your replacement monitor?
If the latter, plan on keeping your PSU and video card until you buy a new monitor, at which time you'll want to upgrade your video card and PSU also. If the former, anticipate spending up to $250 of your budget on a video card like a HD5770 and a quality 500W-550W PSU.
I'm at work right now, but will see if I can post some specifics if time permits. Otherwise, count on another of the regulars to post some good build ideas for you.
February 3, 2010 2:22:28 PM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - Asus mobo - 85

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - AMD Phenom II X4 - 165

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - 4GB GSkill RAM - 110

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - 500GB WD Black HDD - 70

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - Sony Optical Drive - 25


Those are the main replacement parts I'd go with. 455 dollars is the total, The motherboard supports DDR3 and 4 slots of it. That'll start out with 4 GB in two slots and u can upgrade whenever you want but for now 4GB is fine especially DDR3. Also the motherboard has 2 PCIe 2.0 x16 slots so I mean you could upgrade as jtt283 said or do crossfire/sli it'd be up to you (I'd go with one good card over two decent). The reason I went with AMD was to save you some money. I mean if you wanna see what I would recommend for an Intel build I can put it together no problem but it'll probly cost a bit more. SATA hard drive and CD/DVD drive, plus the hard drive is a caviar black.

The only thing I didn't pick out is a case, there's alot of em so you should pick what style you like as for me I would go with http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... (it's full tower which is why it costs so much, you can get a nice mid tower for 100 and under. but your call) whic is 110 + 25 shipping.

So total w/ a full tower is $585. Really I'm not a big fan of overpowering computers so I would personally stop there. Maybe get the other monitor. Or if you wanna really boost speed of some things http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... 30 GB OCZ solid state for 120 w/ MIR for 20. The ssd is really up to you.

This though should cover everything for you, except the only thing I'm not sure about is a processor upgrade. When the new AMD 6 core processors come out I don't know what socket/support they will need. I mean with all of this though you could definately swap out the motherboard and processor for an intel 1366 board and processor.

~Cheesy~

P.S. Forgot about the OS lol... Win 7 is 105, the 64 bit version. So yea... that is it though
February 3, 2010 8:26:42 PM

To jtt283,
probably the former would be what my plan is. To stick with the GTS 250 for now until i replace the monitor in the future. At the moment I'm looking at new CPU, Hard Drive, Case, memory, OS, Optical drive, and Mobo.

To Cheesy,
Whats going to be the difference in future upgradeablity in the future between an AMD setup and an Intel setup. I wouldnt mind seeing your intel rig specs suggestion if youve got the time. Funny enough that was the exact case i was looking at so you seem to have pretty good taste haha.
February 4, 2010 2:17:08 AM

Ya for an intel budget build, I would go with the same RAM, hdd, and cd/dvd drive since it'll all work on either system, for the motherboard and cpu I would go.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - ECS MOBO for 110 with 20 MIR

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - 270 core 2 quad Q9550

so that total there would be $590, still need a case and an OS. This though still wouldn't be future proof and I'd say that the Q9550 would be faster then the AMD Phenom II X4 I linked too. there is a faster intel quad core, fastest being the QX9650 for 330. fastest AMD would be the 965 for 190 (and as fast as any non i5 or i7 cpu)


As for upgrading for the future, with AMD I'm not sure what socket their new processors are going to fit into, although as of now really most all motherboards work with most all new cpus, as for the intel the newest cpus are going to be socket 1366.

As for an intel upgradeable platform you would for one need to spend about 50 dollars more for a triple channel RAM kit cause most all 1366 boards are tripple channel.

The mother board http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - 170.

CPU 290 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



So just to rewrap it and essentially.

An AMD build would be $720 including that case I linked to, as well as windows 7.

An intel build would be $820 including the case again and with windows 7(A little bit slower than the AMD build).

An intel future ready build $940 with that case and win 7 and alot faster than either of those.

With the AMD + Intel build, again I put in one hdd, one cd/dvd burner, and 4 GB of RAM. Both have 2 PCIe x16 slots so you can upgrade to sli/crossfire. Also they both have extra SATA and PCI slots just incase. as well as 2 extra RAM slots.

The future ready build is basically all the same except you can also upgrade the processor very easily to the new 6 core i9's when they come out. Downside would be upgrading RAM would be more expensive since you'll need another triple channel kit. but you would start with 6gb in it.



O man, I forgot you said you had an old computer, If you wanan get the intel rig within the budget then you can reuse your hard drive and cd/dvd drive. that will save you a hundred dollars. However, if you wanted to upgrade to future processors you will def need to switch the motherboard and processor.
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