First Gaming Build $1000-1200

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: End of August/Early September

BUDGET RANGE: 1000-1200 After Rebates but not including gift cards

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (WoW,SC2,MOW2,BFBC2,Diablo 2, etc.), multitasking (music,vent,internet, gaming at same time), School Work (Office, possibly CAD), Light image editing (Photoshop, Sony Vegas), Watching movies

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Need everything i.e mouse/keyboard/monitor/OS



PARTS PREFERENCES: No preference, convince me towards a side

OVERCLOCKING: More than likely in the future

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Not planning on it

MONITOR RESOLUTION: Whatever you guys choose (hoping something around 1600 or bigger

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Haven't built a computer completely from scratch but have upgraded them and been inside of them alot. Please make sure I have all of the cables,thermal paste Ill need. Speakers if they will fit would be nice. Not sure about the Mobo either.I really didn't know what to do for GPU so went with 470, I am a little bit over my range now. Make sure it has everything you would need for a computer you would get out of a box. This is my build below:

My first idea for a build

AMD Phenom x4 955 combo with ASUS M4A88TD

Gigabyte GTX 470 combo with Starcraft 2

Razer keyboard/mouse combo

Antec 300 combo with Lite-on 24x DVD writer

Microsoft 7 64bit

Samsung F3 spinpoint 1TB

Corsair XMS3 4GB Ram

Asus 23.6" HDMI 1080p with speakers

Artic Silver Thermal paste

Rosewill tool kit

Rosewill Anti-static wrist strap

Know of any other combos or possibly a different mobo/ram/gpu/monitor? This is just what I threw together.
16 answers Last reply
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  1. Better case with optical combo CM 690
    The Antec is too crowded.

    I see no PSU?

    GTX 470 is a good deal right now, but it's kinda hot and can get loud. If the price is right for you how about this Palit?
    Better cooled.

    Or at 300 bucks a 5850 overclocked will do better:
  2. :ouch: forgot a PSU so I am really over now, ill have to take out the SC2 for now. Ive never heard of the Palit brand so that is not what I went for. What is the noticeable difference between the 5850/460/470? Also what size PSU will I need? I was thinking 650W. I like that case/CD combo better also, its cheaper.
  3. The three GPUs, at stock speeds, will go 460, 470, 5850 slowest to fastest. However the contest is fairly tight and this will vary depending on factory overclocks and drivers and which game you are looking at.

    Only get the GTX 460 1GB version, not the 768MB. I think that would be a reasonable compromise.

    This is the best deal on a quality PSU for a single GPU:

    or a bit more gets you the modular version:
  4. The Asus 470 is $269 after $20 MIR

    Some data on the 470, 5850's and 5970

    Card (Avg/Min)

    1920 x 1200 res, highest settings tested

    BFBC2 (DX11)
    470 SLI (76/57)
    5970 (77/54)
    5850 Xfire (85/61)

    Dirt2 (DX11)
    470 SLI (128/116)
    5970 (93/83)
    5850 Xfire (11/97)

    Dragon Age Origins (DX9)
    470 SLI (102/65)
    5970 (102/55)
    5850 XFire (95/49)

    Far Cry 2 (DX9)
    470 SLI (131/86)
    5970 (119/76)
    5850 XFire (121/79)

    Far Cry 2 (DX10)
    470 SLI (139/86)
    5970 (111/76)
    5850 XFire (123/84)

    Metro 2033 (DX11)
    470 SLI (44/35)
    5970 (37/26)
    5850 XFire (40/28)

    Heaven (DX11)
    470 SLI (55/33)
    5970 (40/18)
    5850 Xfire (42/20)


    470 SLI (675/478) wins by 9% / 19% over twin 5850's ..... 17% / 23 % over 5970
    5850 XFire (617/418) wins by 7 % / 8% over 5970
    5970 (579/388)

    Skip the As5 and its 200 hour cure time

    pick a TIM from the top few here:
  5. May be a dumb question but will I even need thermal paste with the items I chose and how much will the rosewill tool kit help? I need to look the the three GPUs more to decide on one 460/470/5850 .
  6. A few recommendations 1) drop the tool kit and anti-static strap for Rosewill RTK-045 45 Piece Premium Computer Tool Kit Instead since it's about the same price and has every thing the other has plus a few other goodies that could be useful. 2)Like others have suggested you will get better performance from a ATI HD 5850, also according to AMD running their chipset, processor, and videocards together will give you better performance.

    Just a note hear the heatsink that comes with your processor comes with thermal paste preapplied but the Artic Silver 5 is superior so it depends on if you plan to be resetting the heatsink or if you prefer a high grade of thermal compound.
  7. Thanks for the tip about the tool kit. Im thinking about going with a 460 and trying to get a SSD or should I not worry about the SSD and go for the 470?
  8. Decided to go with a 460 for now. Would my chosen motherboard be capable of SLI later on or should I change that now? All the tests I saw showed the 460 hanging with or above the 5850 and right below the 470.
  9. How much more of an improvement would this mobo/CPU be over the one I currently had picked?
  10. You really want an X8/X8 board for SLI.

    A bit sick today but let me see what I can do.
  11. Proximon said:

    I don't get what you meant with all those parts? What were you swapping in and out? Everything I have read is that its good to get one card and then be able to get another one later on. I also didn't know what the verdict on 955/mobo vs the i5 750/mobo for ~75 more is.
  12. hcsteel said:
    How much more of an improvement would this mobo/CPU be over the one I currently had picked?

    Alright sorry to confuse you, but you did link that.

    You need an SLI capable board. Motherboards with AMD chipsets... like the 880G you originally linked or the 890GX or the 790X are not capable of SLI. Only crossfire.

    The best way to do SLI is to get a capable P55 board, and that means the extra expense of an i5-750 or such. If you like, you could step down to a less expensive processor for that platform, like this:
    That gets you a really great PSU as well.

    Look at this article about gaming CPUs:,2675-4.html
  13. Again sorry about the delirium. What I'm saying here is that you are going to need to re-think everything to stay in budget with an SLI setup. I'm offering some examples of good deals to build a system around.
  14. Now I get what you meant, but I was thinking of switching cpu/mobo to intel if there was a noticeable improvement. I am not concerned with SLI after looking at the games I play (not interested in metro 2033 or Crysis 2). I will just stick with a 460 or 470 for now.
  15. If we are just talking about CPU power, I might recommend the stronger i5-750 for a strategy gamer or possibly even MMORPGS. Not that you need it now but perhaps later.

    Still, you can OC the AMD well and it's probably everything you need for years to come.

    X4 955 and an 870 board seems fine then.
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