Barebones System with Upgrade Options

Hi again!

A few weeks back, the fine resident experts helped me build a budget PC for my mother's birthday, which turned out to be a smooth running beast at an affordable price! She couldn't be happier. The problem is, about a day after ordering it, my laptop died! (Technically it took a big spill, shattering many things within it!)

So I'm in a bind, needing to get myself up and running again, but not having the full budget to go as big as I want until probably after the holidays.

I have Win7, monitor, keyboard, and mouse covered. I am a casual gamer, playing mostly Warcraft and Half-Life 2 (yes, still!) but I'd love to be able to play SC2, Diablo3, and other games at some point--still, onboard GFX should be fine until I can order a great video card later. I'm not sure enough in the benefits of Crossfire or SLI to know if I'd even need it or want it down the line.

As for product preferences, I'm open to most any suggestions although a larger, roomy case that looks good would be nice.

My budget to start is about $400 though I'd love to stay under that. Is it a bad idea to buy now? Should I wait until BF to see if Newegg throws down some killer deals?

Thanks for any input folks!
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More about barebones system upgrade options
  1. So what all are you looking into getting? a fully operational, budget desktop now?

    Do you still have the Motherboard? CPU "Processor"? PSU??? "power supplie"? hard drive?
  2. I'd be looking for a new, fully operational desktop on a $400 budget, with upgrade options in the future. Need everything but the video card if onboard gfx can get me through the holidays playing games with low fps.

    Currently considering the exact build suggested by Bat in my last thread:

    Which is pretty darn stable and solid, but awfully cramped and I can't see getting a video card onto that mobo in that particular case. Plus, I *can* dish out an extra $100 if it'll give me a better foundation to play with.

  3. Not many combos, I don't know what happened to them.

    ASRock 890GM PRO3
    AMD Athlon II X3 440
    OCZ Signature 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 + OCZ Fatal1ty OCZ550FTY 550W
    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB
    Rosewill Blackbone + LG 22X DVD Burner


    Edited to add a HDD.
  4. Thanks Mosox, looks a good deal better than what I had in mind. Am I severely limiting my gaming options with a budget build like this? From what I understand, by really cranking up the budget I afford myself better framerates at higher resolutions, but a system like this with a great vid card tacked on should still play games at 1920x1080 pretty well?
  5. For now you can game on lower resolutions and settings on the integrated GPU, later you can add a HD 6850 for full HD gaming.
  6. ^+1 @mosox. When your budget allows, just add a 1GB GTX460 or HD6850 to play at highest settings, or a GTS250 or HD5750 if you're willing to play without AA and/or slightly lower some settings.
  7. Thanks guys. I substituted a few things in Mosox's build (X3 440 for the X3 445, and a roomier case) and pushed it to $410, but it's lookin' pretty good so far. I see the mobo supports Hybrid Crossfire... is that something worth investigating or will an HD6850 pretty much take care of me? The little I've read on Hybrid Crossfire seems to indicate it's... lackluster.
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