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$800 - $1000 General Purpose with Emphasis on Gaming

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July 5, 2010 11:07:57 AM

Hey, everyone! I haven't built a computer since my first ever build about 5 years ago and I haven't been keeping up too much with technology since then, so I'm trying to get back in the groove and hopefully stay in it. I've done a fair bit of research on here and elsewhere and I'm trying to put together a new system myself. To give an idea of the system I'm leaving behind, it's an athlon 2800+ with an ATI X1600. As you can imagine, it's pretty much the end of its life in gaming. It'll be a Linux machine soon.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Within the week

BUDGET RANGE: $800 - $1000 after rebates and all.

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming, internet, entertainment, programming

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers, Monitor, Optical.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: United States

PARTS PREFERENCES: AMD / ATI

OVERCLOCKING: Very unlikely, but not ruled out. For all intents and purposes, I guess it's a no.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe in the future

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050. May upgrade within year or two. Widescreen is awesome for programming and everything else! Might go dual monitors later if I'm rolling in the green. We'll see :love: 

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: This system will pretty much be general purpose, with an emphasis on gaming. Specifically Starcraft II and Diablo III in the short term, and whatever catches my fancy later. I will likely keep the computer relatively unchanged for about 4, maybe even 5, years before I put Linux on it and try to pound out whatever extra life I can out of it with that. Might add another video card in crossfire if some particularly demanding game comes out before I get a new comp and feed this build to Linux. Maybe some memory upgrade or likewise trivial improvement. Also, I'm the sort that leaves my computer on constantly for days or weeks at a time. I generally don't shut down unless I'm gone for more than a few days in a row or I have to for updates.

Here's the build I have so far.

WD Caviar Black 1TB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Combo Antec 902 and 750W True Power
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

XFX Radeon HD 5850 and AMD Phenom II X4 965
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

ASRock 770 Extreme 3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 4GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This all comes up pretty darn close to the $1000 end and I haven't accounted for the cost of Windows 7. I'm particularly up for suggestions on the mobo and memory, as these are somewhat confusing to me, especially where the mobo chipsets and features are concerned. Of course suggestions on anything else are more than welcome as well! Thanks a lot in advance! :) 
July 5, 2010 5:17:43 PM

what you've got with quad-core's recommendations and it's good :) 
Related resources
July 5, 2010 5:29:33 PM

Mark Heath said:
what you've got with quad-core's recommendations and it's good :) 


Ur talking to me? (dumb question) :D 
July 5, 2010 5:31:13 PM

No sir. Yes sir. Three bags full sir.

Talking about you sir.
Not to you sir.
About you sir.
I do bite my thumb sir.
:lol: 
July 5, 2010 5:33:34 PM

Mark Heath said:
No sir. Yes sir. Three bags full sir.

Talking about you sir.
Not to you sir.
About you sir.
I do bite my thumb sir.
:lol: 



XD

Be more precise???? (In 2-3 words) :D :D :D 
July 5, 2010 5:35:21 PM

Yes. No. Maybe.




Sir.
July 5, 2010 5:39:54 PM

Mark Heath said:
Yes. No. Maybe.




Sir.


Roger that!
July 5, 2010 5:42:14 PM

Ok, cool. Nice Mobo. But what about the memory? I won't be able to run it on that board as 1600 without overclocking, it will I? And what is the reasoning behind getting the 880 chipset as opposed to the 770? I'm just trying to get a handle on the chain of reasoning. I consider this build being as much a learning opportunity as I do a new gaming rig. I probably should have specified I wanted reasoning as well if possible. :) 

I guess X4 955 probably would be better. I figured the extra 200Mhz for 20 bucks wasn't a big deal, but I guess it's not that huge of a speed increase going from 3.2Ghz to 3.4Ghz.

July 5, 2010 5:42:24 PM

unknown_13 said:
Roger that!

July 5, 2010 5:45:19 PM

Blue_Helix712 said:
Ok, cool. Nice Mobo. But what about the memory? I won't be able to run it on that board as 1600 without overclocking, it will I? And what is the reasoning behind getting the 880 chipset as opposed to the 770? I'm just trying to get a handle on the chain of reasoning. I consider this build being as much a learning opportunity as I do a new gaming rig. I probably should have specified I wanted reasoning as well if possible. :) 

I guess X4 955 probably would be better. I figured the extra 200Mhz for 20 bucks wasn't a big deal, but I guess it's not that huge of a speed increase going from 3.2Ghz to 3.4Ghz.


770 is a low end chipset, and look at your build ;) 

Anything above 1333MHz DDR3 frec. doesn't make much difference in real life.
July 5, 2010 5:47:10 PM

argh! You've pre-empted me!
July 5, 2010 5:49:45 PM

Blue_Helix712 said:
argh! You've pre-empted me!

don't you hate it when that happens? ;) 

That memory's alright, but for only the extra 2 bucks or something, the 1600 would be my choice.
July 5, 2010 5:49:47 PM

'bout what? :) 
July 5, 2010 5:52:46 PM

Mark Heath said:
don't you hate it when that happens? ;) 

That memory's alright, but for only the extra 2 bucks or something, the 1600 would be my choice.


The thing is, the board (the one w/ the 880 chipset) would allow 1600MHz only on OC'ed RAM ( wow i don't explain really well :) )

Here:

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

Memory Standard DDR3 1866(OC)/1333/1066
* To reach DDR3 1866MHz or above, you must install two memory modules and install them in the DDR3_3 and DDR3_4 memory sockets.
July 5, 2010 5:54:48 PM

unknown_13 said:
The thing is, the board (the one w/ the 880 chipset) would allow 1600MHz only on OC'ed RAM ( wow i don't explain really well :) )

Even still... he could lower the timings and use it on 1333 maybe?
If that were my 2 bucks, I'd spend it on the RAM anyway, but Quad-core sir's right with 1333vs1600
July 5, 2010 5:55:00 PM

Ripjaws have significantly better latencies. That's why I was thinking they might be better overall.
July 5, 2010 6:02:28 PM

The 2 bucks RAM I listed should run at timings at least as good as the 1333 ones you've got if you run them at 1333 as well. They might be able to get slightly better timings too, since you're running them slower, but it's your 2 bucks. If you want, buy the cheap RAM and get some ice cream :)  with the 2 bucks.
July 5, 2010 6:14:20 PM

Well the forums didn't show me the last few replies, so I didn't notice my opinion was posted by someone else =P
If using that mobo would require you to OC the ram, why not choose a different mobo.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
But if you really want to up the chipset, I'm sure there is something out there =P
July 5, 2010 6:24:42 PM

Are u serious? That chipset on a beastly machine like this one?? Jesus......
July 5, 2010 6:26:40 PM

I'm fairly new to the computer building world, and chipsets o mobos aren't something I know too much about.
July 5, 2010 6:34:01 PM

falseg0d said:
I'm fairly new to the computer building world, and chipsets o mobos aren't something I know too much about.


OK then :D 
July 5, 2010 7:56:35 PM

I'm thinking primarily of the future possibility of crossfire
July 5, 2010 7:57:16 PM

It's great if u have the money for it :) 
July 5, 2010 8:08:48 PM

That's always the million dollar question with technology, isn't it? There's always something better if you have the money. And two days later, whatever you get will the half the price you got it for. Anyway, you guys have been a huge help! I'll think on it for a while longer and I'll be sure to post up any more questions that may come up. Thank you!
July 6, 2010 6:02:25 AM

For that mobo:
Get that if you can spare the extra bit. Then use the G.Skill RAM that we keep posting with if you do get the more expensive mobo.

You is welcomed :) 
!