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$1000+ Canadian, gaming PC.

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February 10, 2010 10:31:31 AM

I need all of the parts required for a PC, mostly for the purpose of gaming.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Near the end of the month, unless I should wait for the 6core I7's to release, for the prices to drop.

BUDGET RANGE: $1000+ Canadian (not sure how much more than $1000) before rebate.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, internet, work, folding.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, microphone.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: No preference, as long as they take Paypal, don't over charge, and the shipping isn't too costly, local stores would work too.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Large tower with spots for adding extra harddrives and disc drives, and other parts in the future, will settle for one of each part for now to save money for other parts (GPU, CPU, RAM).

OVERCLOCKING: If I can do it safely with mostly stock parts, or cheap addons.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Yes if it's cost effective, allow room for expansion to this if it's not, unless getting parts that allow me to expand to SLI/Crossfire is not cost effective.

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Old monitor allows up to 1680x1050, it should still be working, don't know if I need to upgrade, will probably save me quite a bit not to.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: What would the best OS (Operating System) be to use? I might not need to pay for it depending on which one you suggest, don't worry about the price though.

Maybe I should have extra spots on the Tower for 2+ outtake fans.

The main game I'm planning to play is that GTA style MMO, APB (All Points Bulletin), however it would be good if it could run more complex games too, maybe even the most stressful ones, or at least the most stressful that are well optimized.

I don't know if a PC that costs this much could run DX11 (DirectX 11) games well. If it can though that would be good. Would be best if I could spend as little as possible but still be able to expand to DX11 later if I can't do it now.

I want a microphone for gaming. Preferrably stand alone. I've good headphones, I'd like a good microphone (with a cost that doesn't detract from the rest of the computer). I'd get a good headset, but the headphones built into it probably wouldn't be as good as mine, and the microphone built into it probably wouldn't be as good as a stand alone mic. I could stick with my old one for now though, if the cost of a good one would take away from the rest of the computer.

I need a Wireless Network Adaptor, I cannot connect directly to the router with a wire.

Should I get any additional cooling over what comes stock?

I'm using a really cheap mousepad, so far it seems effective. I've heard even a sheet of paper is good. Is it worth buying a more expensive one?

I've an old router, probably among the first good routers with wireless capability. I'm not sure if there is any reason to upgrade it. Purhaps it will give me lag in games compared to a better/newer wireless router. Mine is probably 7 years old now. I'd rather have lag than a worse computer though.

My old speakers, keyboard, mouse, monitor and even this cheap microphone I've still work I believe. It would be good to have better ones, but if it will save money for other parts, I'll wait on upgrading them.

More about : 1000 canadian gaming

February 10, 2010 12:57:01 PM

Interesting thinking, but I doubt Intel intended the hex core to compete with quads. Judging by the price, it's not even for the average consumer. Most likely it's intended for servers.

OS? W7 64bit hands down. I don't have it, but I use it on a friend's pc. It's like what Vista should have been.

Headsets are overrated. I'd rather NOT hear some 16-year-old kid screaming profanity at the top of the lung. Headsets are good for playing with friends. Plus, these days people are doing their things rather than planning out a strategy. It's the fault of trophy system. You can bet if the players can make gestures, they'd give you the finger.

I'd strongly recommend wired networking especially if you play MMOs. You don't want lags - ghosting around/ teleportations. Plus, you don't need to upgrade the router to support 802.11n.

Are you ok with AMD? It's under $1000 CAD. If you go Intel, you're looking at HD 5770 which isn't the best.
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February 10, 2010 1:25:45 PM

Ok so you think there would be no price drop on other CPUs I'd be looking at, if I wait for the 6core I7's to arrive?

Go with Windows 7 64 bit then?

I'll need a mic at the very least. I've a cheap one, all I need to know is if I could get a good one without taking money that could be spent on better parts. I don't need a headset for now, maybe one day when I've money to burn.

I'll probably go for getting a better router at some point, after all it's 7 years old, though decent. I don't know if it has any gaming optimizations. I realize it's best to have a wired connection, though I've heard if you're close to the router/signal, it makes little difference. I'm fairly close (10 or so metres), but it's in a room across the hall, and I don't want to cause others inconvenience when they are walking through it. That and it could get stepped on, eaten (chewed/clawed) by cats, or otherwise wrecked. I'm willing to do it though if it really is a bad option to go wireless.

I'm ok with any parts really, as long as the drivers don't suck and I'm saving money for better parts.
February 10, 2010 1:34:47 PM

Thank you MadAdmiral, and p55ibexpeak for the input so far, keep'em coming.
February 10, 2010 2:34:42 PM

Still wondering people opinion about the questions above, and specifically in my 2nd last post, but now I've another.

Does the heatsink I put over the CPU come with thermal paste applied? I'm just wondering if I'll need to get some.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 2:36:59 PM

If it's the stock cooler, it definitely will.

If it's an aftermarket cooler, it will usually have it. Most people typically choose to add their own to it, but it only cuts a couple of degrees off the temps.
February 10, 2010 2:40:31 PM

Ok that's good. I was just reading the reviews on the page with the CPU you recommended and this caught my interest:

"Was able to unlock the 4th core by enabling ACC in the bios on my Asus M4A785-M motherboard. CPU has been stable under 100% load for 2 weeks now using Folding@Home. Not one bad WU.
Great bang for the buck processor. Would not hesitate to buy again. For $75 you get a nice quad core processor (provided you unlock the 4th core).

Didn't unlock 3rd cache with ACC, however with 4th core unlocked no worries."

Should I be able to do this with this setup, unlocking the 4th core and/or the 3rd cache?
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 2:44:19 PM

I have no idea. I'm not an expert on overclocking. Try Googling it with the mobo above.

Unlocking isn't exactly necessary either. And it's dependent on the specific CPU you get (not the model, the exact chip). Some are able to do it, some aren't. Triple core CPUs are quad cores that aren't perfectly stable with 4 cores active. Therefore, unlocking the core will make the PC less stable.
February 10, 2010 3:10:15 PM

Ok, so it wouldn't make too much performance difference for gaming? I can probably live with 3 cores. In a sense that's one for graphics, one for physics, and one for everything else, and the extra processing power that's not in use from one set of processes can be used for the others. Not sure if it works like that.

Do you have any opinion on if I should opt for a wired connection at all costs? I've heard you don't really need one if you aren't too far from the router. I get about 7Mb per second download, 0.5Mb upload max on this laptop. I'd get 10Mb per second download, and about 1Mb or less upload with a wire, as I remember it when I tested it on the other PC in the room with the router.

I was thinking I might be better off getting a new router instead at some point, and that wireless should be fine with little noticeable lag, given I'm only about 10 metres or so away. All that's between me and the router is walls, and the other computer.

The major concern is the inconvenience for others walking through the hall, people stepping on it, and the pets wrecking it.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:17:01 PM

You can definitely get by with 3 cores. It's actually the most cost efficient for gaming. And no, the unused processing doesn't get used by the other cores. That's called turbo and it's only on the i5-750.

The speed loss isn't in the distance. It's in the fact you're using wireless. Wireless is inherently slower than a wired connection. It doesn't matter how close or far you are from the router. If speed is a big factor, you should definitely go with a wired connection.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:18:16 PM

In general, I don't think that you need a wired connection for MMOs. It might be slightly more recommended for FPS games, but it's really not going to contribute that much to any lag you might experience in an MMO.

What's going to be more important is whether or not your internet provider is good, and whether or not other people are downloading large amounts of data while you're gaming.
February 10, 2010 3:30:27 PM

Ok, so as long as my download speed and upload speed are good I should be fine, or do you automatically add latency, hence increasing lag? As far as I know games don't use that much bandwidth, but the latency should be good for best results.

Here's an example, if I happen to be playing on a server nearby, and I'd normally get say 5 latency as I'd often get with a wired connection in CS:S, Would my latency suddenly be higher becuase I start to use a wireless connection, or does it not matter as long as my download speed and upload speed are fast enough?

As far as I know, the DL of 7Mbps per second, and UL of about 0.5Mbps is more than enough for games. I just don't know if there is other factors to take account of.
February 10, 2010 3:32:10 PM

Oh and I was just thinking, if I can get the money would the i5-750 be the best option, for that turbo function?
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:38:02 PM

Not really. If you do get more money, spend it on the GPU first (the HD 5870 should be around $100 more), then upgrade the CPU to the X4 955 (another $100 or so). If you still have money after that, start to consider the i5.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:38:18 PM

I'm basing this on personal experience, I haven't done a ton of research on it, so YMMV.

A wireless connection is going to be slower than a wired connection, that's just how the technology is right now (and likely will be for the foreseeable future). The question is whether or not it's going to be a noticeable difference.

What's important is not your up/down from the router, but your up/down from the wireless card. As long as you're not stressing the wireless card's bandwidth, I wouldn't excpect to see a noticeable difference between wired & wireless (assuming reasonable latency times). In my experience, gaming doesn't stress wireless bandwidth at all, I never see it taxed unless I'm downloading.

I play WoW on wireless (same deal, router is across the hall, don't want to string wires across the floor), and I pretty regularly see latency of about 200-300ms. That's not going to magically drop to, say, 50ms if I switched to a wired connection. At best, I would expect to see a 10% drop.

Now, if your latency is normally 2 seconds, or you play a lot of FPS games and need that extra-barely-detectable-20ms-boost, you might consider being wired necessary.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:45:03 PM

The CPU isn't the bottleneck. For gaming, the GPU is always the bottleneck. A X3/5870 will beat a X4/5850.

The only time the CPU may be the bottleneck is on an extremely old single core CPU.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:47:47 PM

I should further note that you might as well buy an inexpensive wireless card, put it in, and then if you're dissatisfied, you can always experiment with wired, as your motherboard will have an onboard NIC.
February 10, 2010 3:48:18 PM

Right but for other stuff like encoding, etc. Also, the 5870 is a bad Price/Preformance card. Either get the 5850 or the 5970, not the 5870. In addition some games realy need Quad cores for the GPU to be used to its fullest.

a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 3:55:48 PM

No games really need quad cores. The 5870 isn't the best price to performance, but any increase won't be due to the Law of Diminishing Returns.

The difference in performance between the 5850 and 5870 is being able to play Crysis on 1900x resolutions and high details (5870) and not (5850). Which means the 5870 will continue to be great in the future for longer than the 5850.
February 10, 2010 3:58:43 PM

The 5870 can't jsutify its 33% price diffrence with a 10% preformanbce gain. However the 5970 can justify it's cost.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 4:00:44 PM

It's more like 15-20%, not counting any additional gains from the higher overclocking, and that's a perfect justification for gamers.

The 5970 is a 117% price increase for something like 50% performance gain (over the 5850). It's about the same price/performance ratio.
February 10, 2010 4:02:39 PM

It would probably be good to figure out which cheap wireless card I should get.

Also it could help to know of a good cheap router to replace my ageing one, though I wouldn't add that to the price of the build.

So everyone confirms Windows 7 64bit is the best option?

And yes, if the wireless doesn't work out well I could opt to by a wire for it, and maybe give the wireless card to someone who doesn't play games, or keep it in case the wire breaks.

Builderbobftw is starting to make me question my options now, I'd have to know all the prices of the parts mentioned to see if they are feasible, and also know what the performance difference of the parts being mentioned are.

Edit: looks like you've listed some of the price/peformance info.
February 10, 2010 4:03:11 PM

The 5870 is a 15% increase, max. Theonly reason why the 5970 was only a 50% gain is cuase whatever bench you were looking at had a CPU bottleneck. I would like to see some of those benchamrks whne the Gulftowns are made.
February 10, 2010 4:04:25 PM

anishinaabeg said:
It would probably be good to figure out which cheap wireless card I should get.

Also it could help to know of a good cheap router to replace my ageing one, though I wouldn't add that to the price of the build.

So everyone confirms Windows 7 64bit is the best option?

And yes, if the wireless doesn't work out well I could opt to by a wire for it, and maybe give the wireless card to someone who doesn't play games, or keep it in case the wire breaks.

Builderbobftw is starting to make me question my options now, I'd have to know all the prices of the parts mentioned to see if they are feasible, and also know what the performance difference of the parts being mentioned are.


Nah, you have a good build. Just stay away from the 5870.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 4:08:09 PM

The above build is good. If you were to find more cash, the 5870 would be the first upgrade, followed by the CPU. If you don't, it's still a great build.
February 10, 2010 4:09:21 PM

Also get a x4 955, you wil have bottlenecks running a 5970 on that build.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 4:12:37 PM

@builder: Please, please stop giving bad info. No current generation CPU will bottleneck the 5970. The 5970 is also so far out of budget, it shouldn't even be part of this discussion. All CPU gaming benchmarks are reached by ARTIFICIALLY handicapping the system to make the CPUs stand out.

The build above is great.
February 10, 2010 4:16:08 PM

Did you read the article? If you didn't, can you? OP, read the article then judge.
February 10, 2010 4:24:35 PM

I need to know these first two things:

I still have to pay for a wireless card to receive the signal from the router right? I don't think that was in the build.

You don't have to, but I thought listing a good router as well could be good for my future reference.


Now these are less important:

From what has been said, if I get extra money, get the 5870 (+$100), then the X4 955 (+$100). If I get a bunch of money the next thing would be the 5970 (+$350)?

Will even the X3 425 have no bottleneck with the 5970? I probably won't be able to get that, just would like to know.

Do I have to read all 17 sections article? Looks rather long, I'd probably have to put that off for a bit if I have to read it all.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 4:25:00 PM

I read that article. Here's the one that's actually important.

In the article you posted, the emphasis isn't a gaming PC, it's a balanced PC. That means one that is good for other tasks outside of gaming. This is a gaming PC. Everything else can take a backseat.
February 10, 2010 4:36:17 PM

Not sure if you saw my last reply, the question about the wireless card is important, as it hasn't been put into the build or given a price yet. Don't change the build though, I can probably get whatever money I need for the wireless card. I just need to know which one, and what its price is.

The router question would be helpful to have answered for whenever I get one.

I'd also like to know if I've the right idea of what I should get, in what order, if I have more money to spend.

I assume it would not be wise to buy one of the less expensive parts, and then upgrade to the next step later.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 4:41:27 PM

I didn't see it. Wireless cards will be like $20. I'm not too knowledgable in this area, so you might want to ask someone in the Networking aread.

You have the right idea. Start with the build above. If you have an extra $100ish, upgrade to the 5870. If you've got an extra $200, get the 5870 and X4 955. If you've got $350, get the 5970.

No bottlenecks other than the GPU.

The important parts of the article are the conclusion and some of the graphs. builder's isn't exactly talking about what he thinks it is. That article was looking at building a balanced, all around PC.

On mine, the most important part is the graph on the page I linked to.
February 10, 2010 4:47:58 PM

Where would the i5-750 fit in? It looks to be $34 more than the x4 955. Would that be if I can afford the 5870, and I've more than enough for the X4 955, get get the i5-750?

So that would be + $234 on top of the build?

After that if I've an extra $350, get the 5970?
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 5:04:45 PM

The difference is that the i5 requires a different board, which are typically more expensive. The board I like to recommend for it is $200 (Asus P7P55D-E Pro). So if you had $250 on top of the original build.
February 10, 2010 6:11:14 PM

The difference between Mobo's is $40? So that's about $274 on top of the original build for the i5, Asus Mobo, and 5870?

To get the 5970, it's about $524 on top of the original build, with the i5 and Asus Mobo?

So my options are essentially this:

5850 > X3 425 > 5870 > x4 955 > i5-750 + Asus P7P55D-E Pro > 5970
February 10, 2010 6:14:56 PM

Go for

AM3 X4 955 BE

Radeon 5850 or 5970, based on how much cash you want to blow.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 6:19:06 PM

Here's the path you should take by how much more you have to spend:

$0 X3/5850
$100 X3/5870
$200 X4 955/5870
$275 i5/5870
$350 X3/5970
$450 X4/5970
$525 i5/5970
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 6:25:07 PM

You linked to a more expensive board with fewer features than the original build...
February 10, 2010 6:26:59 PM

That mobo allows the 5970 and i5?

I'm not sure why I should ignore the 5870 if it's accurate what was said before about the perfmance/price differences.
February 10, 2010 6:30:44 PM

http://www.anandtech.com/video/showdoc.aspx?i=3650&p=14

"When you take the Cypress based Radeon HD 5870 and cut out 2 SIMDs and 15% of the clock speed to make a Radeon HD 5850, on paper you have a card 23% slower. In practice, that difference is only between 10% and 15% depending on the resolution. What’s not a theory is AMD’s pricing: they may have cut off 15% of the performance to make the 5850, but they have also cut the price by well more than 15%; 31% to be precise."

February 10, 2010 6:36:23 PM

As far as I can tell the mobo is more expensive but doesn't support the i5, any reason for that?
February 10, 2010 6:38:37 PM

Oh, and wasn't the 5970 50% more powerful for 117% more money?

That's about the same price/performance ratio as 15% more powerful to 31% more cost is it not?
February 10, 2010 6:39:18 PM

Yes, it's AM3. Which is why you can't use lga 1156 with it. But admiral is right, ignore my mobo sugestion.
February 10, 2010 6:40:10 PM

Well, what he said was unfounded bullcrap. What i said was not. He was using a cpu bottlenecked benchamrk. I was not.
a b 4 Gaming
February 10, 2010 6:40:17 PM

That's exactly right. I have no idea what builder's doing...

Here's the board I'd recommend for an i5: Asus P7P55D-E Pro $200.
February 10, 2010 6:43:05 PM

Meh, 200$ for an i5 build? That an x58 price right there.
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