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Looking for advice on this build please

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June 5, 2010 7:53:33 PM

Hello all, After looking into the different options, I have come up with the following build. It's for gaming at 1920x1080 at MEDIUM-HIGH (not ultra) settings. It will be used mostly for gaming. The prices are rounded up slightly, all are from ebuyer except win7. Basically I have gone over my budget of around £550 (currently its on £619... without case!). I would love advice on what I can do to reduce costs, what I don't need etc, or whether I should save up as the build is perfect (unlikely!).

The CPU (the x4 955) I have read great reviews on, particularly when gaming. As I have with the GPU (The hd5770) which supports dx11, so I am quite happy with those two, despite the price. As for the hard drive, ram, motherboard, (although I have taken opinions on it) ect, I would love some feedback.

This is my first time building a PC, so I am extremely greatful for the help!

The build
GPU ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB - £130

CPU AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2ghz - £130

HD Western Digital 500GB Hard Drive SATAII 7200rpm 32MB Cache - £45

RAM Crucial 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1333MHz - £85

PSU Arctic Power 500W PSU - £30

MOBO Asrock 890GX Extreme3 - £95

OS Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit - £80

Disk drive Sony Optiarc DDU1681S 18x DVD-ROM SATA - £12

Total:£619

All are from www.ebuyer.co.uk, but if you would like a link please ask.

More about : advice build

June 5, 2010 9:48:28 PM

You can save 60 odd pounds by getting the AMD Athlon II X3 440, which has been shown in a recent THW article can compete with an i7-920/30 in some situations in gaming.
Also get this harddrive: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB £35
http://www.ebuyer.com/product/158860 It will be just as fast, if not faster. I doubt that the WD is worth the extra £10.
I would advise against that Arctic Power as I'd prefer to buy one either from a trusted, well known brand or one with a positive professional review, if not both.
June 5, 2010 10:04:15 PM

Thanks for the reply! I have immediately gone with your suggestion of the hard drive. Although the power supply has pretty good reviews perhaps your right, do you think I was right about the 500w though? As for the CPU, I will take another look.. Thanks!
Related resources
June 5, 2010 10:45:41 PM

Hmm just read

"For graphics card demanding games, which the majority of them are, yes the athlon iix3 is plenty fast enough. However for cpu demanding games such as GTA IV, ArmaII and Battlefield Bad company 2, it will start to struggle.".

Unfortunately I want to be able to play GTA IV and BFBC2, so I think I will stick with my original idea, thanks anyway!
June 5, 2010 10:47:44 PM

That would probaby be fine for one 5770, altho this would be better quality and cheaper: OCZ StealthXStream 400W £33.

If you're thinking about crossfiring 5770s and you want to buy the PSU for it now, then a good 500W PSU would be fine. A good sign of the sort of quality you're looking for is PCI-E connectors that aren't provided for via molex adapters.

This is from a very good brand, and I've read a positive review for it: Be Quiet 530W Pure Power £45 I haven't really seen one cheaper that I would want to use for two 5770s.

What I mean by professional reviews is the ones that sites like Overclock3d.net, jonnyguru and hardwaresecrets do. Unfortunately you can't always find reviews of that quality, but if a hardware testing site does test it and say that's it's good then I wouldn't be 100% confident but it would be better than a 'newegg' review.
June 5, 2010 10:55:28 PM

Thanks, I don't plan on a second so the first one you suggested is awesome, thanks so much for all the help!
June 5, 2010 11:06:26 PM

Ok here we go with minimum prices I could find...

ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB - £140 (min 130)

AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2ghz - £130 (min 120)

Seagate 500GB Hard Drive SATAII 7200rpm -£35

Crucial 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1333MHz - £85

OCZ 400W Stealth XStream PSU - £33

Asrock 890GX Extreme3 - £95 (min 88)

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit - £80

Sony Optiarc DDU1681S 18x DVD-ROM SATA - £12

£610 (Min 583)
June 5, 2010 11:16:03 PM

For what reason did you choose the Asrock 890GX? Perhaps you can find a cheaper one with the features you want. For example, if you don't want the option of adding a second card then it has a second PCI-E slot which you won't need.
June 6, 2010 8:42:45 AM

I don't know too much about motherboards, so after gettings suggestions it as either this 1 with a built in gpu (backup), +the very slight chance I would get another card, or a £10 cheaper without those features... now that I am thinking about it, perhaps your right.. I need to save money not spend it! Have you any suggestions of your own?

Thanks
June 6, 2010 8:55:46 AM

The M3a770de is a nice little board and I just picked another up for the Gf's build for £52, maybe look into the 790 series for upgraded chipset though if budget allows, Heres an AsRock link, loads of am3 boards on there to drool over:
http://www.asrock.com/mb/index.asp?s=

an x3 435 proc is about £60-£70 atm, mine clocks to 3.5 happily and I unlocked as well, (not guaranteed though on the unlocking)
other than that its looking a good build man :) 
Good luck
Moto
June 6, 2010 9:55:11 AM

Thanks! DO you think I should go with a mATX motherboard? Is the only difference is it's smaller?
June 6, 2010 11:06:59 AM

The northbridge on that is an upgrade on the M3a770de's, the southbridge is the same but yes, the only difference between atx and M-atx is the form factor,or size
if you go with your new choice, Make sure your case will take an m-atx board, any that takes atx should accept it, but doublecheck to avoid tears on unboxing day :) 
Moto
June 6, 2010 12:12:38 PM

the chipset on that one is actually lower grade than the first you posted :) 

when you look on the mobo's screen scroll down to where it says chipset, northbridge and southbridge, the minimum your looking for is 770 on the north and 710 on the south bit of trolling through them should get you a nice balance between cost and performance (reason I quote those numbers is thats what the m3a770de has)
Moto
June 6, 2010 1:44:20 PM

Out of those two I'd go for the GA-880GM-UD2H.
June 6, 2010 4:03:13 PM

Yea that's a good one.
June 6, 2010 5:25:06 PM

Thanks!

Ok everyone here is the build finished, which works out using 2 websites (www.ebuyer.co.uk, and another I found to be very cheap; www.scan.co.uk). Please let me know what you think! Thanks so much!!

ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB - £130 (min 115)

AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2ghz - £130 (min 120)

Seagate 500GB Hard Drive SATAII 7200rpm - £35

Crucial 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1333MHz - £85

OCZ 400W Stealth XStream PSU - £33

Asus M4A785TD-V EVO 785G - £75 (min 69)

Sony Optiarc DDU1681S 18x DVD-ROM SATA - £12

£500 (Min 469)
June 6, 2010 5:49:26 PM

Looking good :) 
doing a build log on here once you start?
Moto
June 6, 2010 5:49:56 PM

sorry, whats that?
June 6, 2010 5:56:16 PM

a Build log, you start a new thread and detail your experiences, it'll be an extra plus for you to look back on in a year or so, see how you've progressed, and other new builders will have a 'diagram' to look through and inspire them as well to make the plunge. :) 

http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/forum2.php?config=t...

Mine is a messy example of a log, but I like to look back and see how I've improved my Rig over time, Im going to be building my Gf's new WoW rig in about a month so this new log will be better I hope :) 
Remeber to enjoy the build as well,
Moto
June 6, 2010 6:23:20 PM

Woah yeah i'm definetley gonna do that, love the case by the way, I am still struggling to find a cheap (£30ish one) that looks decent!
June 6, 2010 6:49:46 PM

You're in the uk, Try a Galaxy 3 case, its same as mine so you have an idea of what you can do with one, I picked on up for £32ish off egay but remember to look for one without the psu included.
Moto
June 6, 2010 6:53:59 PM

wow thats awesome, just looked it up, £30 new... hows it been for you? Cool enough?
June 6, 2010 11:43:17 PM

on my N97 at work atm so surfings a pain but if you check my thread, on a normal day in uk 15'c ish my cpu's idle at very low temps :-) averages about the low 30's but I Posted a pic of my lowest idle temp to show off hehe,
Moto
June 7, 2010 6:53:22 AM

Ok that's good, easy to install fans I'm guessing? "lots and lots of fans!"
June 7, 2010 7:40:06 AM

lol yeah, I have the two on my cpu through mobo headers, the ram cooler on a mobo header, and everything else on daisychained molex's
The fun part is deciding which are intake/exhaust and planning your airflow so it maximises your cooling.
Moto
June 7, 2010 7:48:36 AM

Also I see the case comes with a 450w supply (dont worry I am not planning on using that psu!). Does that mean the case is poor quality?
June 7, 2010 8:18:21 AM

The case itself is solid enough and well put together,

But you can get one without a psu as thats what I bought for my second go,
I wasnt happy with how I'd cut the first one go to the ebay retailers shop and trawl about, youll find one :) 
Off to sleep now, I'll check up later ok
Moto
June 7, 2010 8:25:24 AM

Thanks! From this site, do you reccomend I purchase both fans extra? or something different?
June 7, 2010 8:46:38 AM

The Antec Three Hundred is a wonderful case too
June 7, 2010 9:38:11 AM

Emin said:
The Antec Three Hundred is a wonderful case too


Thanks, I took a look at it, it's a bit more expensive.. however it does look like it would be cooler.. I will take another look when I am buying :p 
June 7, 2010 5:21:11 PM

Personally I just buy cheapest fans I find on egay, they do the job ok enough for me :) 
its personal choice though mate, some people dont flinch at £20+ per fan, I cant afford that tho :p 
Moto
June 7, 2010 5:23:33 PM

Well they are like £1.50 xD. Here is the current plan!

ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB - £130 (min 115)

AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2ghz - £130 (min 120)

Seagate 500GB Hard Drive SATAII 7200rpm - £35

Crucial 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1333MHz - £85

OCZ 400W Stealth XStream PSU - £33

Asus M4A785TD-V EVO 785G - £75 (min 69)

Sony Optiarc DDU1681S 18x DVD-ROM SATA - £12
Galaxy 3 case - £30

£530 (Min 499)


So that looks good to you?

Thanks!
June 7, 2010 5:25:45 PM

That looks cracking to me mate, Im not 100% on the psu though, but maybe its a case of see how it works out and replace if necessary in the future.
and yes, £1.50 for a 120mm fan does inspire one to overdo it hehe :p 
Gl and happy building mate, pm me when you start your log ok
Moto
!