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Advice On Building a "Budget Gaming" PC

Last response: in Systems
November 4, 2010 2:23:17 AM

Hey guys,
This is my first time building a system for myself and I would like to hear your thoughts on it.

Approximate Purchase Date: Within 2 Weeks.

Budget Range: ~$800 to $1000 AUD.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Mainly Gaming(WoW and SCII Max settings if possible)

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor and Speakers.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: I'm an Australian so I've been using these 2 sites.
CPL . Parts List
MSY . Parts List

Country of Origin: Australia

Parts Preferences:Not to fussed. Should be reliable though

Overclocking: Maybe (Would be my first time overclocking if i was to. Would like the system's longevity to be relatively long (4years+))

SLI or Crossfire: Most likely not

Monitor Resolution:1920x1080

Additional Comments: The computer will mostly be used for Gaming in particular WoW and SCII. The system should be able to run them both at relatively high settings (if not max :D ) as well as any preceding expansions (Cataclysm/Heart of the Swarm etc) on decent settings. At least 60FPS would be great.

I would like to overclock since reading the threads on this forum; it appears to be extremely beneficial though I am unsure about the downsides to this. I would like to keep my system for roughly 4years (I have heard OCing kills the CPU life but not by how much). It would also be my first time overclocking and so i am unaware of the dangers/risks. I am a risk taker though :p .

I would also consider shipping from overseas, but because does not ship to Australia i would be forced to use other alternatives such as to order the products for me and then ship them to me at an additional cost. After looking at the prices and because of the exchange rate between AUD and USD currently (1:1 almost) the only items that are overpriced are the Graphics cards.

I have chosen parts and will list them now. Comments/suggestions are welcome. Also any comments on what the system is capable of would be great (i.e. Runs SCII Max settings fine etc) All prices are in AUD
NOTE: Most of these choices were made upon reading the recommendations throughout this website as well as what was available to me on the price lists.


CPU: AMD AM3 PHENOM II 965 B.E. $168
MOTHERBOARD: Gigabyte 880GA-UD3H $129
RAM: G.skill Ripjaws 4GB 1333Mhz $85 (Is 8GB necessary? Can i go for 1600Mhz?)
HDD: Samsung 1TB F3 $69(Have considered the W.D. 1TB FAEX for $115 but that may not be worth the $46)
Graphics card: Gigabyte Radeon 6870 $299(Have considered the Radeon 6850 for $249)
CASE: Antec 300 $75
PSU: Unsure( I don't know exactly how much power i need)
COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 $33(Or can i just use the heatsink that comes with the CPU?)

Total: $858 So far.

Thank you for taking the time to read my post. Additional thanks for posting any input/suggestions/comments you may have.

November 4, 2010 2:39:54 AM

Just wrote quick article that is within your price range here. It is very close to what you have picked out here, although a tad cheaper. See if this helps you out:

And yes you can just use the AMD Phenom II 965 Heatsink that it comes with just fine. I currently am using the AMG Phenom II 955 with stock heatsink, and works flawlessly; Even with overclocking.
a b 4 Gaming
a b Ý World of Warcraft
November 4, 2010 2:49:30 AM

1. Gaming rigs 4GB RAM is plenty
2. F3 1TB, that WD is not worth it
3. No OC - stick to stock HSF
Related resources

Best solution

a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2010 3:05:58 AM

There's no need for 8GB of ram and the F3 HDD is the way to go.
The 212+ is a good idea for decreased fan noise and noticeable temp improvements.
G.Skill Ripjaws F3-10666CL8D-4GBRM - $99.00

OCZ Fatal1ty Series 550W Modular - $72.00

Antec Three Hundred Case - $59.00

Looks like a good well balanced build.

November 4, 2010 3:44:27 AM

Thanks I have had a look at the link and the builds are very identical :) . It is very reassuring.

Sweet. Will consider taking out the cooler, but since it is only $33 may decide to keep it according to what Davcon said.

Thanks mate. Also the links you have sent me have opened up a new online ordering site option for me ;) 

Drawing from the replies and the suggested builds I am going to take it that 550W is a sufficient amount of power for my system.
Also just to confirm, there is practically little to no difference between a HIS/Gigabyte/XFX Radeon 6870 except for the fan and any excess features? Seeing as I am not looking to overclock i shouldn't need to worry about this?

Also is there any difference between either of these? Should i get one in particular?
G.Skill Ripjaws F3-10666CL7D-4GBRH (2x2GB) DDR3
G.Skill Ripjaws F3-10666CL8D-4GBRM (2x2GB) DDR3

EDIT: Added in graphics card question.
Ram question.
a b 4 Gaming
a b Ý World of Warcraft
November 4, 2010 6:18:40 AM

the CL7 memory has tighter timing, meaning it will perform SLIGHTLY better (about 1 microsecond faster). you'll see this in benchmarks, but in real world performance its about 0.03 fps improvement in most games -- you won't see it.

There is no real difference between the various gfx card makers.
a b 4 Gaming
a b Ý World of Warcraft
November 4, 2010 10:21:08 AM

Yep no SLI/CF a decent 80+ 550 watter PSU would do fine
November 4, 2010 10:37:56 AM

Thankyou for the posts. I have now finalized my build :) 
November 4, 2010 10:38:49 AM

Best answer selected by ndawg.