Gtx 460 mid to high range gaming pc

Hi Tom's Hardware folks. I just bought a Gigabyte GTX 460 (1gb) and now I want to build a nice mid to high range gaming computer around it.


BUDGET RANGE: $1200 or so, including the video card I just bought for $230 (could be higher if need be)

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, programming, movies, internet, cad

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, dvd burner, video card (Gigabyte gtx 460 1gb), power supply (reusing my Thermaltake W0106RU 700W)



PARTS PREFERENCES: I would like to use an Intel CPU, probably LGA 1156, unless AMD boards supporting SLI are still being made (is the nforce chipset dead?). Gigabyte motherboards are my preference, though not strictly.

OVERCLOCKING: Yes, though it's a secondary consideration

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Possibly SLI in the future

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1360x768 (32" HDTV through VGA) (I may change back to a standard monitor someday)

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I have been a fan of AMD for some time, but the possibility of running NVIDIA cards in SLI is swaying me to Intel for this build. Overall I value stability more than overclocking ability, but I still want the option open.

My parts selection so far, (minus the video card and PS mentioned above) very open to suggestions:

Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-P55A-UD4P LGA 1156 Intel P55 (one of the higher-end P55 boards with 16x-0x or 8x-8x? PCI express for possible SLI)

CPU: Intel Core i5-750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz
Intel Core i5-760 Lynnfield 2.8GHz

Memory: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (ddr3 1600, on the approved memory list for this mobo)
G.SKILL Trident 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2000 (ddr3 2000, on the approved memory list as well)

Case: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower

I'm not sure if there's enough difference between the i5 760 and i5 750 to justify the price bump (though small). As for the DDR3 memory, should I make the jump to 6 or 8 GB? Can you even have 8 GB on this chipset/mobo? How much of a (gaming) performance difference is it between ddr3 1600 and 2000?

I suppose I still need an aftermarket cpu cooler (one that's fairly quiet would be nice), and two identical sata (2 or 3?) hard drives to run in raid (maybe around the 500 GB - 1 TB size range).

I typically just use onboard mobo sound for my 5.1 setup, and I've never had any problems with sound clarity or performance... is it really worth buying a sound card? Will I see any performance boosts, or just marginally better audio quality? If I needed one, i guess I'd just choose from the top selling list on newegg, but I'm open to suggestions here.

Thanks for taking the time to look over my parts. It's been a long time since I last did a proper computer build... my current/ancient system is a socket 939 athlon x2 3800+, 1 gb pc3200 ddr, 2x 160gb seagate HDs in raid 1, and an XFX geforce 7600 gt (which broke, so for now I substituted a 7200 gs).

Edit: Looks like there are still acceptable AM3 boards that support SLI, as mentioned in this post, so maybe I should swing back to AMD after all.
6 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. There's also the MSI NF980-G65 board which I'd personally pick over the ASUS M4N98TD Evo, it doesn't support SATA III or USB 3.0 though, unless you want to use a controller card.
  2. How about this setup:

    cpu + mobo:
    hdd: 2x
    hsf: maybe unneeded... I have an old thermaltake big typhoon on my 939 system that could be adapted. If necessary, add $30 to $60 for one of these

    Total cost w/o hsf = $677.91 before rebates

    Then I'll probably throw in another gtx 460, as you say. SLI is king with those things.
  3. Best answer
    that mobo isn't good at all if u use the usb 3.0/sata 3 the 1st pci e will run at x8 and the other one at x0 and if u us 2 gtx 460's the usb 3 and sata 3 will be disabled so going with my build and removing the cooler will be a better choice.

    also the haf 922 is alot better it has cable manegement while the antec doesn't it also has much better cooling it's also alot more roomier.

    also get these
    ram sticks they will save you money without any performance hit.

    just add what i said to my build and you will be happy
  4. Best answer selected by bobasaurus.
  5. I ended up going with the i5-750 and p7p55d-e pro mobo you recommended. Running it right now, and it's working great. Chose a different set of ram that was on the memory QVL, with short spreaders to prevent any interferance with the hsf.

    Ended up recycling my previous case, along with the psu and dvd burner. The psu would not even post the mobo, so I'm getting it RMA'd and using a cheap spare for the time being. The 600 watt spare is working, but cuts out and restarts the machine when under heavy load for more than about 10 min. SLI'd GTX 460s and RAID0 drives make the power requirements too high for this free AR pos.
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