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First Build ~$700

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October 8, 2010 1:20:00 AM

I've never built a computer before, but I have taken a old one apart xD [if that counts]. My cousin just built a computer for the first time and he's the one who gave me the idea of making one myself. He recommended new egg. I went to a lot of different sites searching around for what's good and what's bad and came up with a build that's almost exactly $700 [without rebates taken out].

What I'll be using it for:
Playing Games: Aion, Guild Wars 2 [when its released], and Fable III [if its ever released]. However other than that I'm not a really a hardcore gamer
School Stuff: Open Office, Google Sketch Up
Other: Browsing, watching videos, music

I won't be overclocking anything, ever.

What I already have:
OS [Windows 7 Ultimate, yay]
Monitor - 19" 1280x1024
Keyboard + Mouse. I'm thinking of getting new ones though because mine are kind of old. Don't include that with the price of the actual computer. Recommendations would be nice :) 

Few questions about building and general stuff:
1. I don't have any antistatic stuff [wristband/gloves], will I need any? I'll probably build it on my giant oak table in my kitchen if that means anything.
2. Does the phenom II stock cooler come with thermal paste already applied? Because I don't have any.
3. Will I need any extra cords?
4. I have a 26" LCD TV [by Westinghouse Digital], it have HDMI and VGA connectors so can I use it as my monitor instead? Because it seems like it might wreck my eyes or maybe use more power [produce more heat]? I dunno

Build:

Motherboard: Asus M4A77TD
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131603

I put this at the top, because I want to make sure its compatible with everything below. I won't ever be xfx or sli so the single pci 2 doesn't really affect me. Plus its cheap [$85 with $15 rebate]. I just want 2nd opinions on its quality or any problems I might encounter.

CPU + PSU: Phenom II x4 955 and Corsair 650w
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.514375

Right now there's a combo that makes it -$20 off, but if that ends before I buy all the parts then I'll probably downgrade to the 945

GPU: Asus GTS 450 OC
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121394

I was debating between this and the 5770. But this one seemed faster because it was OCed even higher than the EVGA FTW version.

Case: HAF 912
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119233

I've heard this case is nice and spacious and has a lot of tool less devices. I don't think I'll be adding in more fans even though it supports 200mm. But if I do, I'll swap out the 120mm in the front for a 200mm and put the 120mm at the top of the case.

Memory: 4GB [2x2] DDR3 1333mhz WINTEC
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820161279

It was cheap and looked kind of cool xD I know I want 1333 or 1600 and 4GBs. But if its a bad choice, can you tell me why and recommend a different brand?

HDD: Wester Digital Caviar Black 500 GB 7200 RPM 32mb Cache
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136320

Is it worth the +$5 to upgrade from the 16mb cache to the 32mb cache? Why? I did, I'm just wondering if it actually does anything.

Optical: LiteON 24x DVD/CD
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106289

I don't want or need blue ray so this'll do fine. I can't tell because I've never seen it but does this have the newer connections? Called sata I think.

Subtotal: $639.92
Tax [yup, I live in California, sucks :/ ]: +$52.79
Shipping: +$6.85

Total: $699.56 + $35 worth of mail in rebates

I plan to upgrade to 8 GB of RAM after the holidays [yippe]. And maybe, possible, buy a ssd when they get cheaper. But that's in the future. Any advice on changes in hardware would be nice. Or just tell me what you think




More about : build 700

October 8, 2010 2:17:46 AM

1. You shouldn't need any. Just ground yourself by touching something metal (like the case) before handling any sensitive components like the CPU and video card.

2. Pretty sure it does.

3. Probably not. Everything comes with the cords these days. Though you may need a cable to hook up your tv since you're not buying a new monitor.

4. It should work fine, though it may be a bit bright.

The rest of the system looks pretty good. The 650W PSU is a bit overkill since you don't plan to overclock or crossfire/sli. You could get along just fine with a good 550W. The RAM is questionable. I'd consider dropping a few extra dollars for some GSkill Ecos or Ripjaws, or a Mushkin kit. The DVD drive you picked is a SATA drive, so you're good. it actually has it in the product name on Newegg.

Other advice: I'd shop around for more combo deals. You should be able to do better than what you've got if you're willing to flex a bit on components. Consider dropping down to a three-core processor (that's all you'll need for most games). Also, don't bother upgrading to 8 gigs of RAM later; 4 gigs is more than enough for any standard gaming system today.
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October 8, 2010 2:27:52 AM

Hi,

1. If you touch your case, it will be fine. A static strap is nice but not needed. I would still pick one up for 3 bucks.

2. Yes it does.

3. No, all your data cords come with your motherboard and the power supply have everything else.

4. Yes.


So on to your build.
#1. AMD and NVIDIA don't play very well together, the 5770 would be a much better choice :) 

#2. Invest in some quality memory such as g.skill branded memory, this is a very fast and low-votage kit. I would go with g.skill because it's way more reliable and the timings on this ram are 7-8-7-24 (first number matters) and 1600.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

#3. The Spinpoint F3 hard drive 500GB is a better choice, it's all about the platter size. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

#4. This motherboard is pretty good for the price
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Please note:

Do not upgrade to 8GB of ram, for your needs you would be wasting ram. You will probably only use 3GB at most. Really.. don't do it...

Sorry if i went overbudget, but these upgrades would be nice.
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October 8, 2010 5:02:22 AM

coleam45 said:
1. You shouldn't need any. Just ground yourself by touching something metal (like the case) before handling any sensitive components like the CPU and video card.

2. Pretty sure it does.

3. Probably not. Everything comes with the cords these days. Though you may need a cable to hook up your tv since you're not buying a new monitor.

4. It should work fine, though it may be a bit bright.

The 650W PSU is a bit overkill since you don't plan to overclock or crossfire/sli. .

I forgot to mention. I'll be buying a new graphics card too, I just don't know when. I plan for it to be the same price as I'm buying in this rig, but a year from near it'll be a lot better for $150.
Also, the 550w corsair is actually more expensive than the 650w.

when i was looking at combos there were so many motherboards i didn't know much about so i didn't want to look through all of them. and sometimes they pair some things with some poor quality things i don't want..

Mr Pizza said:

So on to your build.
#1. AMD and NVIDIA don't play very well together, the 5770 would be a much better choice :) 

#2. Invest in some quality memory such as g.skill branded memory, this is a very fast and low-votage kit. I would go with g.skill because it's way more reliable and the timings on this ram are 7-8-7-24 (first number matters) and 1600.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

#3. The Spinpoint F3 hard drive 500GB is a better choice, it's all about the platter size. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

#4. This motherboard is pretty good for the price
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Do not upgrade to 8GB of ram, for your needs you would be wasting ram. You will probably only use 3GB at most. Really.. don't do it...

yeah a little too expensive of ram, but i'll go for 1600 g.skill and get that hdd. then i guess i'll downgrade to 945 and look for more combos xD

Got it, no more ram xD and i tried to pick a mb where i wouldn't be wasting anything, like that extra pci2 will go to waste. but the 6gb sata is nice. i dunno though, i've heard some pretty bad stuff about asrock.. so i've been trying to avoid them in general

so i guess i'll go for the 5770, was eying that sapphire anyways.

thanks guys

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October 8, 2010 5:31:25 AM

Mr Pizza said:

#1. AMD and NVIDIA don't play very well together, the 5770 would be a much better choice :) 


It shouldn't really matter though if the motherboard doesn't have onboard video (it doesn't), right? I thought the only time it's really an issue is if you have an AMD board with ATI onboard video then you have to worry about the drivers if you want to use an NVIDIA card.

The reviews for the board from nvidia card users don't mention any problems.
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