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$500-600 Budget - Light Gaming (WoW)

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February 10, 2010 3:27:05 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Asap
BUDGET RANGE: $500-$600
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: School work, research, Gaming (WoW)
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg.com, ncix.com -- to show us selection & pricing)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
PARTS PREFERENCES: None really
OVERCLOCKING: Maybe
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe
MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1280x1024
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: So it's time for me to venture into my first PC build. I've already done most of the legwork, just really looking for double checking and any suggestions. I'm mainly going to use it for general everyday use and light gaming. I play WoW and don't think I'll venture into any more than that. And I really don't need to play it on full res. Since I'm in grad school I'd like it to last a good deal of time (5-6 years).

I've helped my dad building his last few so putting it together won't be a problem. I tried to take advantage of NewEgg's Combo deals as much as possible. After doing a lot of research on what others have suggested in other threads here's what I came up with. (Windows will be purchased seperately and I don't need a monitor or anything like that).

I am open to overclocking but probably don't plan on it honestly. If I do overclock I assume I should not just go with the AMD fan?

CPU: AMD Athlon II X4 630 Propus 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor Model ADX630WFGIBOX - Retail $101.99
Mobo: GIGABYTE GA-MA785GMT-UD2H AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail $89.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Memory: OCZ Gold 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ3G16004GK - Retail $106.99, $20 MIR
Graphics: SAPPHIRE 100283-3L Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Retail $159.99, $10 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Power Supply: OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ600MXSP 600W ATX12V V2.2 / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply compatible with core i7 - Retail $74.99, $25 MIR
HD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $54.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Case: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail $61.99, $12 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

TOTAL COST: $613.88 upfront, $497.61 after cashback and Rebates.



I'm least happy with the memory... after reading everything I wanted to go in the direction of G-Skill but bang for my buck is what I'm after.

1) Is the OCZ Memory compatible with the motherboard? They're both DDR3 but I can't find it on Gigabyte's site?
http://www.gigabyte.us/FileList/MemorySupport/mb_memory...

2) I was most confused on the motherboard. There are tons of combo options with the AMD Athlon II X4 630, but I went with a cheap one that had DDR3. Are there any better options? http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductCombos.aspx?Item=N...

3) Will this do what I need? Or is it even overkill?

I'm open to any and all suggestions people!! That's why I'm here. Just be price conscious. Thanks in advance!!!
February 10, 2010 3:31:45 PM

Uh, I would get this over the 5770, save some $. Or if you don't want to lose power, then option 2. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Option 2:

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

The 4870 will beat the 5770, but at a lower price. The 4850 shold be almost on par with the 5770, at a way lower price.

and maybe use the 75$ you will save on the 4850 to get this cpu: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Best solution

a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 3:34:09 PM
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1.) They're probably compatible. However, you should upgrade it to the G.Skill Ripjaws 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 sticks. OCZ's sticks have some issues with getting them to run at the specified settings.

2.) That's a good board, but you're wasting the onboard graphics. Here's one without onboard and has USB 3/SATA III ports in a combo with the CPU: GIGABYTE GA-770TA-UD3 for $174 after rebate.

3.) That's all you need, if you don't overclock. If you do decide to try it, you should buy an aftermarket cooler. One of the best is the Coolermaster Hyper 212 for $30.

EDIT: Stick with the 5770. It's got better features and is more future proof.
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February 10, 2010 3:47:11 PM

MadAdmiral said:
1.) They're probably compatible. However, you should upgrade it to the G.Skill Ripjaws 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 sticks. OCZ's sticks have some issues with getting them to run at the specified settings.

2.) That's a good board, but you're wasting the onboard graphics. Here's one without onboard and has USB 3/SATA III ports in a combo with the CPU.

3.) That's all you need, if you don't overclock. If you do decide to try it, you should buy an aftermarket cooler. One of the best is the Coolermaster Hyper 212 for $30.

EDIT: Stick with the 5770. It's got better features and is more future proof.

I did notice that on the OCZ's, are these what you're referring to? They were my other choice actually.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Good call on the Motherboard!

When you say that the 5770 is more future proof what do you mean? Like when I re-do a new system I could use it as a cross-fire card? I'm thinking this will last me a long time and since the motherboard I'm looking at doesn't support crossfire, I'm thinking I'd be doing a whole new system by the time I'm looking.

Since budget is the name of the game in my case, if you had to pick one, would you downgrade the GFX card to one Bob suggested and upgrade the memory to the G.Skills?

One last question, on the brand of the 5770's. It's merely a difference of preference and price right?
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 3:51:42 PM

I'm actually referring to these sticks.

By future proof, I mean that it's more likely to be good in the future. The 5xxx series features DirectX 11 and cooler/quieter operation. Typically, the second feature will allow it to be better in Crossfire (dual card solution), but that's not relevant, since the boards you're looking at have 1 PCIe 2.0 slot. It should last a while.

Nope. GPUs are the single most important factor. Sacrifice everything else for that.

Pretty much. Some have better warranties (XFX), some have better combos (Sapphire). Some are just cheaper. I base it entirely on price.
February 10, 2010 3:56:30 PM

MadAdmiral said:
I'm actually referring to these sticks.

By future proof, I mean that it's more likely to be good in the future. The 5xxx series features DirectX 11 and cooler/quieter operation. Typically, the second feature will allow it to be better in Crossfire (dual card solution), but that's not relevant, since the boards you're looking at have 1 PCIe 2.0 slot. It should last a while.

Nope. GPUs are the single most important factor. Sacrifice everything else for that.

Pretty much. Some have better warranties (XFX), some have better combos (Sapphire). Some are just cheaper. I base it entirely on price.


So i would be better of with a E4300 and a 5870 rather than a 955 X4 and a 5850?

I mean you said the i would need a single core to reach bottlenecks, right?
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 4:04:48 PM

If you had the E4300, yes. If you didn't no, but only because the E4300 is on a dead socket with DDR2. That's not really a performance choice, but more out of the need to stay somewhat current.

It's not just the single core for the bottleneck, it's the age and lower performance of the CPU. The age you would need before it's a problem is so high that all that's out there is single cores.
February 10, 2010 4:08:09 PM

Tom's did a nice article a while back that showed how much a quad core boosts gaming comapred to dual/triple cores.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 4:14:14 PM

Completely wrong. The boost is when you move from single to dual, and from dual to triple. There isn't much of a gain when moving from a triple core to a quad.

And all CPU gaming benchmarks are ARTIFICALLY created by handicapping the system. It won't happen in real life usage.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 4:19:59 PM

That isn't the article where the actually tested the effects of the number of cores. How about you actually read what you post?

Here's the actual article. You should take note of the gaming performance (blue bars). Triple cores actually OUTPERFORM quads.
February 10, 2010 4:22:49 PM

That is an average. Some games are not multithreaded, which is why that happened. WOW is. This is a WOW build, Not a Stalker build, or i would recomend a Pentiumm D OC at 5ghz.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 4:26:23 PM

EXACTLY. You don't need a quad for WoW.

And it's not exactly an average. They took similiar performing single, dual, triple, and quad core CPUs to see if the number of cores matters. They found that for GAMING triple cores are best. For other tasks, quads were better.
February 10, 2010 4:29:13 PM

MadAdmiral said:
EXACTLY. You don't need a quad for WoW.

And it's not exactly an average. They took similiar performing single, dual, triple, and quad core CPUs to see if the number of cores matters. They found that for GAMING triple cores are best. For other tasks, quads were better.

I've read that as well... Since I'm looking for overall and still able to play WoW, the AMD Athlon II X4 630 is still a solid choice, correct?
February 10, 2010 4:32:47 PM

Either 720BE x3 or 955 x4 BE deponding on whetehr you want to pay 100$, or 160$.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 4:34:30 PM

Go ahead with the 630. The disagreement from above is carrying over through different threads. Just keep in mind that quads aren't going to do much for you if you don't do a lot of encoding or other CPU intensive work.

Any AM3 CPU is a solid choice...
February 10, 2010 4:46:00 PM

Since the quads might not affect me and what I'll be using it for... would I notice a difference with this combo? Using a cheaper AMD Athlon II X3 435 Rana 2.9GHz.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

If I do this I can definately keep the 5770 and upgrade to the G.Skills memory. Sorry to nitpick, just $20 upgrades and such here and there add up in the long run.
a b Ý World of Warcraft
February 10, 2010 5:05:45 PM

That's a good combo. I'd use it if it's the difference between the 5770 and the G.Skill and not getting those.
February 10, 2010 5:39:34 PM

LOL!

Failing to understand a well known joke and trying to be smart!

Priceless!!
February 11, 2010 2:20:33 AM

MadAdmiral said:
That's a good combo. I'd use it if it's the difference between the 5770 and the G.Skill and not getting those.

Think this is the direction I will go in. Newegg has a 24 hour special on the Diamond 5770 for 149.99 + $10 MIR so will be probably be ordering soon. In the end it puts me at $544.

All in all, thanks for your help!
February 11, 2010 2:20:49 AM

Best answer selected by kyden.
February 11, 2010 3:19:10 AM

I'd say drop the 5770, lower the Cpu to X3, $50-60 MB, and get a $5850.
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