MMO Gamer's First Attempt

Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,

I'm seeking help/advice/constructive criticism before purchasing and constructing the following build. Based on the selections ive made below, remaining questions i have are as follows:

1.) Do i need an air cooler/water cooler? Or should i be good to go?
2.) Do i need to purchase paste to apply to my CPU? Guessing this applys if i plan on overclocking and have additional cooling sources? (Sorry im a newb)
3.) Will 4 GB of RAM suffice? After installing Windows 7 i should only have around 3 GB of RAM. Is that a sufficient amount of RAM for a MMO gamer? If no, can u recommend better RAM that will be compatible with my motherboard
4.) Are the components listed compatible with each other? (Concerned about the mobo, ram, graphics cards. I think im ok, just checking to make sure ^^

P.S i plan on using a 42inch HD TV as a monitor and i already have a keyboard/mouse which is why they are not listed. Im US based and have been looking on newegg to purchase my components. My budget is $1500 give or take a few usd.

I appreciate any advice you can give me. Kindest Regards,


1 COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811119197

1 XFX HD-587X-ZNFV Radeon HD 5870 (Cypress XT) 1GB 256-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
Item #: N82E16814150490

1 SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822152185

1 CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply
Item #: N82E16817139005

1 ASUS M4A87TD/USB3 AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 AMD Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813131651

1 OCZ Special Ops Edition 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Low Voltage Desktop Memory Model OCZ3SOE1600LV4GK
Item #: N82E16820227558
(Note to self: Enough RAM? Should i upgrade to 6GB? 8GB?)

1 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders
Item #: N82E16832116754

1 WD SiliconEdge Blue SSC-D0128SC-2100 2.5" 128GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
Item #: N82E16820250002
(Planned on installing OS on SSD. Everything else on the other hard drive.)

1 AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX
Item #: N82E16819103727

1 LITE-ON CD/DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04
Item #: N82E16827106289

Total in USD w/o rebates = $1395
7 answers Last reply
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  1. 1) You'll be good to go unless you plan to overclock. That processor comes with a decent enough stock air cooler, with pre-applied thermal paste (so you don't need that either - question 2)). If you do want to overclock, you can pick up an aftermarket CPU cooler (like the Scythe Mugen, etc.), and then possibly some fancy thermal paste.

    3) 4gb of RAM is all you want for gaming. For games, it's better to have faster RAM with tighter timings than bother adding more than 4gb of RAM.

    4) Everything is compatible - you should have no problems whatsoever with that build!

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with your system the way it is, however that said, I'd personally go with an Intel i5 760 processor, some sort of P55 motherboard, and one or two GTX 460s. Right now, that seems to be the performance/dollar sweet spot. Anyway, if you do prefer AMD / ATI, then I wouldn't change anything.
  2. I'd like to point out that the build is overkill for MMOs. You could easily get something for half the price and be just fine. I'm mainly talking about the GPU. You could easily get by with an HD 5770 and have no problem.

    I would make a couple of changes, even if you don't want to lower performance. First, ditch the OCZ RAM. OCZ has compatibility issues across many of their lines. I frankly wouldn't trust any DDR3 sticks they make. You'd do better with these G.Skill Ripjaws 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7 or these G.Skill Eco 2x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 7. They're roughly the same, so get which every is cheaper. If they're the same price, the Ecos are better.

    Second, I'd switch the SSD to the OCZ Agility 2 120 GB. It's a little more expensive, but it's easily one of the best out there right now.

    Third, I'd drop to the X4 955. The 965 is the same chip, just with a factory overclock. I also really hate recommending the i5 now, seeing as the LGA 1156 socket is being replaced in under 3 months. It's just not a good idea right now.

    Fifth, given that you're only getting a single PCIe slot board, you could drop the PSU down to a 550W model and do just fine. Stick to Corsiar, SeaSonic, Silverstone or Antec (XFX is good, but I don't think they have a 550W model) to save a few bucks.

    Sxith, there are other, cheaper cases to look at. I'd check out the Antec 300 Illusion, Coolermaster 690 and Antec 900 (or 902). The Antec cases should have some good case/PSU combos, so check them out.

    Finally, and this is a more general comment, combos are your friend. I can think of at least three combos that are being offered right now that would drop the price nearly $100 without materially changing the build. For example:

    PSU/HDD: XFX 650W and Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB Saves $25
    CPU/GPU: X4 955 and HD 5870 Saves $30 (plus $13 from the 965 to 955)
    RAM/Case: Ripjaws and Lian Li PC-7FN Saves $25 (over the HAF and Ripjaws)

    I know there are a lot of combos with Windows 7 around too. It wouldn't surprise me if I missed one or two...
  3. MadAdmiral,

    According to the manufacturer, Ripjaws and Eco's are made for Intel products. That being said im concerned whether or not i can achieve DDR3 1600 on the AMD processor ive selected.

    I'll look into the combo's currently available to save some money where i can. Thx
  4. That's just marketing. They're all going to say that, with the exception of OCZ because they're sticks need too much voltage to run with Intel. All it really means is that Intel has a larger market share.

    Achieving 1600 mhz is easy. You just set it that way. The board will likely default them to 1333 mhz, but some minor changes to the settings in the BIOS will get them where they should be. You should really do this with every build, so it's not an issue.
  5. Also, im not concerned with MMOs that are currently available. (i.e FFxi and WOW)
    I'm preparing for Final Fantasy 14, due to be released in Sept, which has the following minimum requirements. So im wanting a PC that will allow me to handle its demands.

    Operating System Windows® XP SP3 *2
    Windows® Vista(32-bit / 64-bit)SP2 *3
    Windows® 7(32-bit / 64-bit )*3
    CPU Intel® Core 2TM Duo (2.0 GHz)
    AMD AthlonTM X2 (2.0 GHz)
    RAM Windows® XP: 1.5 GB or higher
    Windows® Vista / Windows® 7: 2 GB or higher
    HDD/SSD Space Installing: 15 GB or more
    Downloading: Space on the hard drive where My Documents is located should be 6GB or more *4
    Graphics Card 512MB NVIDIA® GeForce® 9600 series or higher
    512MB ATI RadeonTM HD 2900 Series or higher
    Sound Card DirectSound® compatible sound card (DirectX® 9.0 or higher)
    Internet Connection Broadband Internet connection or higher
    Screen Resolution 1280 x 720 or higher; 32-bit
    DirectX DirectX® 9.0c
  6. MMOs by definition aren't hardware intensive. If they were, they would drastically limit their player base. They're pretty much just a step up from Facebook "games" in terms of necessary hardware.

    I assume those are the specs for FF 14. In which cause, I could play it on my ancient laptop I got for $700 five years ago. That should tell you something about the power needed.
  7. Uhm well, i ran the FF14 benchmark on my two year old $900 laptop and scored a 128 which is pathetic. I'm lookin to score at the very least 3,000 on the benchmark. This upcoming game seems more than just a step up from any facebook game. In any case, im feeling fairly confident about this build up to now.
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