~$1K (USD) Gaming System

I build my system 2 years ago. My friend is now looking for a system and I have a general idea of what to get, but would like the forum's skills. The will be mainly for gaming and normal use.

Requirment: i7 Processor, 6GB of Ram
I also prefer nvidia and DX11 if possible.
Only 1 GPU is required, but having the ability to move up to SLI would be nice.
No sound-card is needed (integrated works fine)
Under $1,200.00. Newegg works great (or Fry's).

He may also need a monitor. If you can recommend one for under $150, that would be great. Don't consider the monitor as part of the 1.2k price point.

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  1. An i7 isn't that great for gaming. The i5 would be just as good and $200 cheaper. Or go with an AMD X4 955, get roughly the same performance for another $100 less AND keep an upgrade path.

    nVidia is getting kicked around by ATI in the high end market (which you're in), so I'd advise avoiding them. They don't offer anything special that's useful.

    Here's what I recommend:

    EDIT: Didn't notice the monitor was excluded from the $1,200...

    CPU/Mobo: i5-750 and Asus P7P55D-E Pro $360
    RAM: G.Skill Eco 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $105
    GPU: HD 5870 $385 after rebate (with free game)
    HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB $75
    Case/PSU: Antec 902 and TruePower 750W $200 after rebate
    Optical: Cheap SATA DVD burner $19
    HSF: Sychte SCMG-2100 $35
    Monitor: Asus 23" 1080p $170 after rebate

    Total: $1,349. The monitor's a little over $150, but it's really hard to find a good one for less.
  2. Only change I'd suggest to Mad's build is this monitor instead

    Asus 23" 1920x1080 $150 after rebate and promo code

    If you want to save a few more bucks bucks, you can grab this GPU/PSU combo
    xfx 5870 and XFX 750w BE (Psu was rated 9.6 on jonny guru, so Xfx might become a new recommend PSU reseller)

    Grab a HAF 922 case as well $90

    Should save you $45 after rebates if my math is correct. No free game though >.<
  3. I think it's actually $65 after rebates. And those are good changes.

    Here's the full build with banthracis's additions:

    CPU/Mobo: i5-750 and Asus P7P55D-E Pro $360
    RAM: G.Skill Eco 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 $105
    GPU/PSU: HD 5870 and XFX 750W $450 after rebate
    HDD: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB $75
    Case: HAF 922 $90
    Optical: Cheap SATA DVD burner $19
    HSF: Sychte SCMG-2100 $35
    Monitor: Asus 23" 1080p $150 after rebate and promo code

    Total: $1,284
  4. The build above is about as good as you're going to get at the budget. If you need to save a little more money (say, to buy Win 7), consider an AMD Phenom II X4 955 for pretty much the same gaming performance. Only alterations required are cpu & mobo.

    955 & MSI 890GXM-G65 - $260

    955 & Gigabyte UD4 - $300 + free game

    No other changes required.
  5. Actually, if you wanted to go the AMD route, I'd make these changes:

    CPU/GPU: X4 955 and HD 5870 $520
    Mobo/PSU: Gigabyte GA-790XTA-UD4 and Corsair 750HX Modular $215 after rebates
    Rest is the same.

    Total: $1,209. It'd save another $20 over just switching the CPU and boards. Or, if you wanted a better looking case, here's a great deal: Coolermaster 690 and cheap SATA DVD burner $83. That'd save $26 over the HAF 922.

    EDIT: Didn't notice the rebate on the board. Just switching the CPU/board is the same price as what I did. Though, I like Corsair better than XFX for the PSU.
  6. Heh. Leave it to you to find even better deals. :)

    I've got an XFX 850W and no complaints yet. They appear to be getting the base from Seasonic, and jonnyguru reviews have been pretty great...as long as you don't mind the neon green parts.
  7. Here are some good deals at Micro Center:

    CPU: Core i5 750 Processor for $170

    MOBO: P7P55D-E PRO LGA 1156 P55 for $180

    HDD: 1 TB Samsung Spinpoint F3 for $65

    That would save you $20.

    Since you have the extra cash, and a fantastic board for overclocking, why not drop it on an unlocked chip?

    Core i5 655K 3.2GHz for $200.
  8. microcenter has tax, Newegg doesn't (in most states) :D

    Depending on tax rate doesn't actually save any money in the end.
    Good finds though!

    As for the i5 655k, it's actually a downgrade to a 2 core chip, which isn't even binned separately for better overclocking.

    Our perceptions changed when Intel told us that they will not be binning these processors in a special way or marketing them at die-hard overclockers, but instead at system builders who can utilize the unlocked core features to provide cheap pre-overclocked systems with minimal fuss.

  9. Why would you go for an i5 instead of the i7?
    If we're building new, I'd rather give him the hypertheading.
  10. Hyperthreading isn't used in gaming. It's highly useful for editing rigs, 3D rendering, etc. But it does nothing for gaming.

    Not to mention, an i7 build costs about $150-200 more than an i5 build, and $200-300 more than a Phenom II X4 build. That money could be used on a better graphics card instead of hyperthreading.
  11. I think they were just trying to save you money. i7 cpu's are more expensive. The X58 platform for the i7 9xx series costs more for motherboards. The more powerfull CPU's exceed your needs for gaming, and instead, more money was spent on the 5870 Graphics card.

    Just a point regarding the advice of Banthracis and MadAdmiral: You guys are awesome! Thank you for looking over my shoulder and correcting me.

    Edit: coldsleep too! beat me to the enter key.
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