$1000 (no monitor) Build


I've been out of the game for awhile and haven't kept up with the latest in greatest in the desktop world. I awoke to find my laptop completely dead this morning, and have decided to go with a desktop/netbook setup for home/travel instead of my one-size-fits-all gaming laptop previously.

So, I am looking at spending around $1000 for a desktop, exclusive of a monitor, speakers, mouse, keyboard, and other external accessories.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Immediately. My HTC EVO isn't going to cut it for primary computing now that my laptop is shot.

BUDGET RANGE: Roughly $1000 after rebates. Looking to hit the sweet spot for price/performance. I can be flexible, but don't want to pay out the nose for increased performance past the "point of diminishing returns"

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Photoshop (semi-serious photo editing, occasionally dealing with 300mb photo images), Gaming (Everquest 2, Starcraft 2, etc)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: I do need a monitor, but will deal with it in a separate budget. Might get a new keyboard/mouse, but again, have one for now so not too worried about it.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg has always served me well, but if it saves me a significant amount, Ill go elsewhere.


PARTS PREFERENCES: Currently eying an Intel processor either i5 or i7, but heart inst set on anything

OVERCLOCKING: Yes, eventually. Chances are out of the box I should be able to run almost anything. I generally don't overclock until my stuff is nearing the end of its life cycle.

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Doubtful, unless it falls into the budget. I'm not against it, but id rather go with a more powerful single option then add a second in the future (when they are cheaper)

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 24" 1920x1200 likely, might be talked into a 1920x1080

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'm an adult. I don't need flashing lights, LEDs, or other non-essential frills.

Ok, now that thats out of the way...

The budget isn't completely firm, but I'm not looking to spend a bundle on this build. This kind of fell on my lap with the departure of my laptop, so I need to keep the budget within control.

Heres a rough idea of what I was thinking:

OS: Windows 7 OEM: $100
CPU: Intel i5-750 $195
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD3 $140
GPU: Gigabyte GTX 460 1GB $230
Memory: 4GB GSkill Memory $90
HD: 1TB 7200 RPM Western Digital HD $90
Optical Drive: whatever, $25
Case: Antec 300 $70
Power Supply: whatever, $60

That comes to about $1000.

I could substitute the i7-930 and go with a socket 1366 build...

i7-930 $290
Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R $210

Brings the total to closer to $1165

Are either of those an intelligent build? Is the extra money for the 1366 build worth it? Would it be worthwhile to spend the money to upgrade to 8gb RAM?

Then for the monitor I'm looking at the 25.5" Asus on newegg for ~$280 (1920x1200) or the 24" 1900x1080 Dell for ~$200.

Comments suggestions or general bashing would be great.

Thanks fellas.
12 answers Last reply
More about 1000 monitor build
  1. ^ You have come up with good components IMO...
    But have you considered the new AMD 1055T 6-Core CPU?
    As you are fine with overclocking, you can easily run these chips at 1090T's speed(3.2GHz), thus would still have some headroom for overclocking and also get better performance than at stock...

    As for the Intel builds, if it going to be semi-serious work, then IMO the i5 would suffice again you could get even better performance when overclocked...
    So you can spend the money saved on more RAM...

    RAM - $180($10 off promo code EMCYWZY79, ends 8/16) for 2x 4GB kit...
    Or with this combo - this ASUS board has eSATA built-in if that matters...

    CASE - Check out this case -
    CM 690 Black

    HDD + PSU -
    Samsung F3 1TB + OCZ 550W
  2. ^ HAd just posted in your other thread...you seem to have an Antec 650W PSU, then you can use that in this build and the 550W modular in that HTPC build...
  3. Thanks for the ideas.

    Looking into that AMD build, but still leaning towards the i5/i7 for now. Mostly trying to decide if there is any difference between the 1156 and the 1366 socket builds.

    Then the other big choice is the GPU. Looking at the 1GB version of the GTX 460 which can be had for about $230. Or if its worth going with a Radeon 5850 for ~$300.

    Again mostly trying to hit the sweet spot of price/performance components without hugely bottle necking any major components.
  4. ^ Well for photoshop, the Nvidia cards are better suited as CS4/5 take good advantage of CUDA and speeds up the processing...

    As for the builds, like I said, if you overclock, then I the i5 would suffice as you get more out of CPU for less, but if you want very fast stock performance, then why not check the i7 8xx CPUs ?
  5. Thats not necessarily true. I know CS5/CS4 leans towards CUDA, but only for AfterEffects and PremierePro. For photoshop, the only gpu acceleration can be seen through OpenGL, and 5850 is definitely supported

    But with that being said, the general opinion is that 5850 is about $ 80(+- 10 more expensive), but it is not $80 better performance wise. Yes, it beats the 460 in benchmarks, but at a steep price premium, so diminish returns.

    If you have the extra money, go for it, but i would stick with the 460 as it could run sc2 and everquest 2 just fine. Especially if you OC, and the 460's are known for staying cool even after a hefty OC.

    If you lean towards intel, depending on how much you value a little bit more photoshop filtering speed over the cost, i would say i5 is more worth it, just cause of OC and i7 8xx might only shave a few seconds off for a steep price premium.

    However, the AMD build is much better for thread handling, in whcih Photoshop heavily takes advantage of. Id definetely look into a 1055T build, oc'd ofcourse.

    gkay09's build is a great start. The extra money you save from the cpu and mobo goes towards RAM, also very important for large camera raws
  6. ^ Nice info there...
  7. Thanks for the info,

    Another somewhat random question, I've seen in a few other threads people mentioning living close to a Micro Center. I've never heard of them before, but I do live relatively close to one in Columbus, OH.


    $199 for an i7-930 seems a bit out of line (in a good way) from nearly everything else I can find online. Are these open box/refurbs or something?
  8. nope those are legit. im actually heading down there to pickup a few soon =D (from canada)

    did you wanna switch to i7 930 build =p ?
  9. Well for $199 for the i7-930 it definitely has me leaning that way now :)
  10. Ok, I'm about to pull the trigger, but wouldn't mind you guys giving it a quick look to make sure I'm not omitting anything large, or have any compatibility issues.

    How's this look?

    CPU: i7-930 $199 at Micro Center
    =$214 w/ Tax

    MOBO: ASRock X58 Extreme 3 $190 at Newegg
    OS: Windows 7 Home Premium $100 at Newegg
    -$10 Combo Deal
    =$280 Total

    GPU: ASUS GeForce GTX 470 (Fermi) 1280MB 320-bit GDDR5 $290 at Newegg
    PSU: Corsair 850W $130 at Newegg
    -$20 Combo Deal
    -$20 GPU Mail in Rebate
    -$20 PSU Mail in Rebate
    =$340 Total

    Memory: G.Skill 3x2GB DDR3 1600 $150
    -$10 Promo Code
    =$140 Total

    Hard Drive: Western Digital 1TB Caviar Black 7200RPM 64mb Cashe Sata6.0 $95 at Newegg
    =$95 Total

    Case: Antec 300 Illusion $70 at Newegg
    Optical: Liteon 22x DVD Writer $26 at Newegg
    -$12 Combo Deal
    =$84 Total

    Grand Total of $1153

    Have I over looked anything? Or need to buy any other sort of cables/connectors/etc? I probably won't Overclock right out of the box, so don't need an aftermarket heatsink yet.

    Little different than what I initially posted...
    -I'm looking at the i7-930 because at $199 its just too good of a price to pass up.
    -The GTX470 is a bit beefier than the 1GB GTX460 and the reason is because of the combo deal and mail in rebate. The GTX460 doesn't have the rebate, so when paired with the same Power Supply in a combo deal the 470 only comes out $30 more. $30 more seems reasonable for the boost? I think?
    -I don't think I will notice any difference between the western digital 64mb/6.0sata and the 32mb/3.0sata versions, but the price difference is only $5, so what the heck.


    Thanks again everyone
  11. I live next to a Micro Center too. They have some great prices. I think I'm going to go with a similar build.

    Looking to spend 1000 on the tower and another 300 on monitor and keyboard.mouse combination.

    This looks nice.
  12. ^^ Nice but I would suggest this drive...
    Samsung F3 1TB

    And IDE Drive...IMO better off with SATA...
    10% off with promo code EMCYWZY88, ends 8/16


    Or get the Lite ON DVD and get Free Shipping with the above case using this code...
    Free shipping w/ promo code EMCYWZY52, ends 8/16
Ask a new question

Read More

New Build Systems Product