Non-gaming $500 Intel Build

Approximate Purchase Date: This Week

Budget Range: $500 After Rebates (could go beyond this by $100 or so)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: business apps, audio output, sound recording (limited editing), surfing the internet, watching movies

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, sound card, HD

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:

Country of Origin: US

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: I would like to use an Intel processor and must have 2 free PCI slots in the MB for my sound card. I would also like onboard graphics on the MB and prefer ATX over mini ATX. Quality. Not Biostar.

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No

Additional Comments: PC needs to be as quiet as possible. I want something that will last for the next 6-7 years - my current setup lasted longer but I've been hobbling along for awhile now. So quality parts and stability is important to me. No gaming necessary but HDMI out would be nice.

Any advice?

9 answers Last reply
More about gaming intel build
  1. I just recently built this at home, runs great. Quite similar to what your looking for.

    - Intel i3 530
    - Asus P7H55-M Pro
    - Antec 300
    - Seasonic SS-350SFE 350W
    - G.Skill Ripjaws 4GB (2x2GB) 240pin DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666)
    - Seagate Barracude 7200.12 500GB 7200RPM
    - Sony Optiarc CD/DVD

    Sub-Total: 475.93 Before Taxes
  2. Thanks for the quick reply.

    I've heard some bad things about the H55 board - any problems? The board is my main concern at this moment - I'm at a total loss. Perhaps I've been misinformed on the H55.

    Mr. Pizza - I really want to stick with Intel and am willing to pay the extra for that. I do like that case - very industrial-looking.

    Oh...I don't need a hard drive - got plenty.

  3. I can't really speak for others about the H55, but I have done several builds using it without a single problem. I also know others who have had great success using it.

    Maybe the bad things you have heard, have been from a lesser brand. A lot of people have problems when they go cheap and by a brand that isn't very reputable.
  4. Any reason for intel? The athlon ii x4 will do the same.. and with 2 more cores. Also runs cooler :D
  5. I guess I don't have a compelling reason for going Intel. I am thinking future up-grade-ability though. Also I tend to like the chipsets on the intel mbs better. I am open to influence:-)

  6. Upgrade-ability eh? Well then Intel isn't the way to go.. If you get something like an Athlon II, you can upgrade to a Phenom II Six-Core if you wanted to, with the same motherboard too. Intel.. not so much the best you can do is get an i7 8XX 1156
  7. jmathers said:
    I guess I don't have a compelling reason for going Intel. I am thinking future up-grade-ability though. Also I tend to like the chipsets on the intel mbs better. I am open to influence:-)


    Yeah, about that. . . Now is a really bad time to be looking to be future proof. Both major mainstream mobos are getting phased out soon, and neither has a new CPU lineup planned for it.

    LGA 1156 is getting superseded by LGA 1155 in Q1 2011. AM3 is getting superseded by AM3r2 (aka AM3+) in Q2 2011. Unlike their previous two generations, AM3+ CPUs will not be compatible with AM3 mobos. Most of what will be available in the future for those sockets is already available. You'll see some speed bumps, but that's about it.

    The only real difference between platforms regarding future proofing is that AM3 boards SATA 6/USB 3 will perform better than an H55's SATA 6/USB3. So, if you feel like maxing out a USB3 port, go AMD.

    Something you might consider (since you said you had plenty of HDDs, and I presume plenty of disk space) is a small SSD for a boot drive. Fast and completely silent. Unfortunately, the kinds of SSD you can fit into a $500 budget are 30-40 GB in size, so you'll need HDDs anyway for space, which nulls the silent advantage.
  8. Ok not worried then about future proofing - gotta have a machine soon.

    Here's what I'm thinking:

    Intel Core i3 processor

    Asus MB H55

    4GB G.Skill RAM

    Sony Optiarc DVD

    Total so far: $331.96

    Still need a case and a power supply......

    I've looked at the Antec 300 and the Coolermaster cases but I wasn't too impressed by either. Anything else out there?

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