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Asking for advice on budget gaming cpu

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April 9, 2010 3:05:41 AM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: This weekend!

BUDGET: 600-700$ Before OS purchase!!

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, music storage, general usage!

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: monitor, kb, mouse

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com preferably

PARTS PREFERENCES: N/A

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe (would be my first attempt) SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe?

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Might need some advice here. I currently use a Soyo HDTV for my main monitor. (their website says 1366x768 ?) Not really sure on this one.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I do need an operating system, however I am holding out on a small chance at another route of acquiring one. So needless to say that is not figured into this budget. Also I noticed the Mobo has one pci-e slot at x4. Which is worthless for a crossfire build for the future. So that is one area i'm gray in still. Crossfire really worth it??

Currently I am looking at this setup.

AMD Athlon II X4 635 Propus 2.9GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Model ADX635WFGIBOX - Retail

MSI 770-G45 AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

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

OCZ ModXStream Pro OCZ600MXSP 600W ATX12V V2.2 / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC ... - Retail

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

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

XFX HD-585X-ZAFC Radeon HD 5850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card w/ Eyefinity - Retail

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBNQ - Retail

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

Thanks in advance! :) 

More about : advice budget gaming cpu

April 9, 2010 3:14:35 AM

as a quick note, I also forgot to add that I don't need a case. Friend handed me down his cooler master to use. thanks!
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April 9, 2010 3:21:29 AM

ukcatsfan said:
as a quick note, I also forgot to add that I don't need a case. Friend handed me down his cooler master to use. thanks!


Honestly you probably wont need to Xfire a 5850.

For the next 2 years you will probably be set for gaming.

I have no recommendations for your build. Nicely done.
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April 9, 2010 3:24:15 AM

I would get this board: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AM3 AMD 790X ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
$120 before MIR. It has x8 CrossFire.

Get the GSkill Ripjaws:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Retail
$106.
You forgot a case, I recommend this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
$80 before any rebates (has a MIR and instant savings of $20, final price = $60)

If you plan to CrossFire down the road (say when the 5850 comes down in price), I recommend going with a quality 750W unit such as the Corsair 750TX.

Note: If the links don't work (there's a bug on the website) just Google in the product name.

edit: Beat me to it. If you have the case, which case is it? Is it big enough?
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April 9, 2010 3:31:08 AM

Thanks for the quick responses. Doh! My apologies. The case is actually the Cooler Master 690.

I will play with those and see if i can keep it under 700$
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April 9, 2010 3:38:34 AM

^ That is a good case. Use it. (It's the same one I recommended :lol:  )
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April 9, 2010 3:46:38 AM

:)  yea he got a new one last christmas.

I am taking your suggestions and moving some things around, however one more question if i may.

Heat sinks...paste...should i invest in these?
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April 9, 2010 4:50:38 AM

I personally would take the Rana 435 over the Propus 635. 3 cores perform better then 4 cores in gaming.

If you want to overclock your CPU a good amount then you would want a aftermarket HSF. Get the Coolermaster Hyper 212, it's $35 and it's the best HSF under $80.
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April 9, 2010 10:32:39 PM

+1 for the Hyper 212+.

As for X3 vs X4, imo, I'd get an X4 considering most games will be cr@ppy ports like GTAIV that benefit from a quad in the future.
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Anonymous
April 10, 2010 6:39:47 AM

I can suggest this proc without hesitation.

AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition Callisto 3.2GHz $100.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I just built a system last night after reading articles about unlocking it. It's essentially a 2 core Denab/4 core proc with all of it's cache (Something the propus/athlons don't have - something that games like). With it's high core speed and potential to unlock at least one of the other 2 two cores, along with added cache is something to consider. Plus it's 20$ cheaper that your current choice. Not all games get much more from the additional 2 cores, but we're seeing a few pop up that can truly give an advantage to 3-4 core systems. Bad Company 2 for example.

All four cores are unlocked and I'm currently evaluating the overclocking potential.

Currrently it's sitting in this board:

ASUS M4A79XTD EVO AM3

which has already been recommended. Also much better to run crossfired, as opposed to your original mobo pic that runs the second pciE at 4x with a secound GPU. atleast this board will give you 8x/8x

Plus the new Gulftowns should "Drop in"

In the end, it's your money and satisfaction. Best of luck with the build



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Anonymous
April 10, 2010 1:02:38 PM

Sorry, EDIT Gulftowns for Istanbuls. Reading too many articles these days about code words and roadmaps. My apologies.
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April 10, 2010 4:37:55 PM

Quote:
Sorry, EDIT Gulftowns for Istanbuls. Reading too many articles these days about code words and roadmaps. My apologies.


There seems to be this trend where people recommend buying 2 core processors for the purpose of unlocking them into 3 and 4 core processors and saving money.

Here's the deal, unlocking cores is not guaranteed, and even if you do unlock them, there might be stability issues.

If you want a 3 or 4 core processor, simply buy it. If you dont need it, then dont get it.

But buying a 2 core for the purpose of getting a 4 core is risky.

Maybe if there were some firm numbers to indicate the likely hood of success I could say it's not reckless.
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Anonymous
April 11, 2010 12:09:24 PM

cmcghee358 said:
There seems to be this trend where people recommend buying 2 core processors for the purpose of unlocking them into 3 and 4 core processors and saving money.

Here's the deal, unlocking cores is not guaranteed, and even if you do unlock them, there might be stability issues.

If you want a 3 or 4 core processor, simply buy it. If you dont need it, then dont get it.

But buying a 2 core for the purpose of getting a 4 core is risky.

Maybe if there were some firm numbers to indicate the likely hood of success I could say it's not reckless.


No doubt, there is a risk. Never said it was a guarrantee, only an opportunity. And there probably aren't any real numbers showing success rates. It would be hard to quantify what is and isn't a success...how many cores unlocked, voltages used, temps etc.

I was only making a suggestions for purchase with a tight budget. If it's a gaming rig, then the added core clock and cache would provide a little performance boost and save a little money. And the opportunity for a the lower cost part reaching the performance of a higher cost part can be part of the satisfaction of building your own machine.

It's an opinion, but I feel the core of enthusiast computer building includes, but is not limited to, overclocking, and more recently unlocking. Something some people have lost. Especially with the budgets some of the readers have, lower cost parts can be tweaked to provide similar or better performance than higher cost parts. If a person wants a low cost computer that's reliable and just works, buy a ****(insert favorite computer maker here) 400-500 dollars gets a decent intro computer, add a discrete GPU and you're at the OP's budget. Done!

If you want to piece the parts yourself, have the satisfaction of doing it yourself, and only that; then sure go for the part guarranteed to at least meet your requirments (buy 4 cores if you want 4 cores as you stated)

But there is that extra satisfaction of saving money and getting much more performance in return for a little time spent finding the limit. Granted there is a risk gonig this route, and it may only give you back what you paid for, but that risk is low.

Either way, I was simply adding options to the shopping list. It never hurts to have options. Again, best of luck on the build to the OP.
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April 11, 2010 1:02:05 PM

Why would you recommend a board with a 2nd pci-e 16x? If he's building a budget $600 computer then I highly doubt he'll add a 2nd $300 video card.

Also I would rather go with the rana on a budget build.

Why recommend him a 750w corsair. There's no way he can fit ina $110 pSU on a budget build. You're better off with an earthwatts 600w or something to that effect.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus is a thumbup. No complaints.


And I personally am not into the whole unlocking cores idea. I haven't done any research into the stability problems if there are any but I wouldn't doubt it either.
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April 11, 2010 6:09:35 PM

Quote:
No doubt, there is a risk. Never said it was a guarrantee, only an opportunity. And there probably aren't any real numbers showing success rates. It would be hard to quantify what is and isn't a success...how many cores unlocked, voltages used, temps etc.

I was only making a suggestions for purchase with a tight budget. If it's a gaming rig, then the added core clock and cache would provide a little performance boost and save a little money. And the opportunity for a the lower cost part reaching the performance of a higher cost part can be part of the satisfaction of building your own machine.

It's an opinion, but I feel the core of enthusiast computer building includes, but is not limited to, overclocking, and more recently unlocking. Something some people have lost. Especially with the budgets some of the readers have, lower cost parts can be tweaked to provide similar or better performance than higher cost parts. If a person wants a low cost computer that's reliable and just works, buy a ****(insert favorite computer maker here) 400-500 dollars gets a decent intro computer, add a discrete GPU and you're at the OP's budget. Done!

If you want to piece the parts yourself, have the satisfaction of doing it yourself, and only that; then sure go for the part guarranteed to at least meet your requirments (buy 4 cores if you want 4 cores as you stated)

But there is that extra satisfaction of saving money and getting much more performance in return for a little time spent finding the limit. Granted there is a risk gonig this route, and it may only give you back what you paid for, but that risk is low.

Either way, I was simply adding options to the shopping list. It never hurts to have options. Again, best of luck on the build to the OP.


If the budget is that tight, get a x3 or x4 Athlon for the same price as the 550 BE. I would trade the satisfaction of knowing my 4 cores are guaranteed and stable than the chance of maybe having a 6 MB L3 Cache with 4 cores, MAYBE.
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April 11, 2010 7:08:08 PM

I'm 3 for 3 with unlocking the 555 into the quad. Have only OC'd one of the quads, it went to 3.6ghz with no voltage changes and right now there's no need to push it further. Before I did the unlock, as 2 cores it went to 3.8ghz with no voltage changes.

For a gamer, I think it's the best CPU you can get right now for $100. Even if it doesn't unlock, it's a powerful dual core with good cache and clocks easily to 3.8ghz. that's going to last a while even if it doesn't unlock into the quad :)  You can always upgrade to a quad later too if need be.

Personally I would also go with the Gigabyte GA-770TA-UD3 motherboard for $90. USB 3.0 and Sata 3 (6gb/s). The only limitation is it's only meant for 1 video card... which in your case shouldn't be an issue imo. By the time (2+years) the 5850 is showing its age u can just buy a new card, by then 5850's may be hard to find at reasonable prices anyway to CF (already getting tough to find in stock 48xx's at reasonable prices)

Anyway as Raven said, just giving him some options. Even at 3.8ghz with an easy OC, the 555 is still a powerful Dual core with all that cache for gaming if it doesn't unlock.

Good luck with whatever way you choose to go! :D 
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