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Buy prebuilt or build my own gaming computer?

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February 12, 2011 2:25:55 PM

Hello,
Currently I am using an emachines desktop pc to play WoW, SC 2, Warhammer and all that fun stuff. Lately I have been having some issues with lag and starting problems and I have been considering buying a new one anyways seeing how it is about 5 years old...

My dilemma is that I am unsure if I want to buy all the parts and build my own pc or just buy a tower from bestbuy and upgrade the graphics card (which is what I did with the emachines)

My budget is approximately 4-600 and I don't want anything that can run crysis 2 at full blown capacity, but I want to enjoy my games without having to knock down all the graphic qualities to the bare minimum which is what I currently have to do. I have been reading online about how to build a computer and it doesn't seem TOO complicated but from what I see online the price is generally equal to a store bought one.

This ACER seems like a good buy.. Phenom II quad core http://www.bestbuy.ca/en-CA/product/acer-acer-aspire-de...

Any tips and advice would be GREATLY appreciated

Thanks in advance!

More about : buy prebuilt build gaming computer

February 12, 2011 2:35:44 PM

For a $600 budget you're much better off buying the components and building it yourself. The biggest "waste" of money building a computer is buying Windows 7; not really a problem if you know anyone in a University. Most students get free and discounted Windows and Office. Staff and faculty usually get free licenses.

Anyways gaming performance is almost completely dependent on the CPU and GPU (video card). With your budget I would suggest getting a Phenom II 955 and AM3 motherboard with a GTX 460.

For ~50-100 more you can get the i5-760 and LGA 1156 motherboard.

In both cases you would want a aftermarket cooler to do some overclocking.

If you cannibalize your current system for basic components like the hard drive you can save a few dollars.

Buy an Antec or Corsair power supply; I wouldn't recommend any other brand except Seasonic (overpriced).
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February 12, 2011 3:09:49 PM

Well, building your own can be cheaper. But you don't get any single point of technical support sand you have to buy the operating system as well. What I mean by"single point" support is if you have a problem with your eMachines PC, you call eMachines. If you build your own and you develop an issue you need to narrow it down and then call the manufacturer of that part for support.

It can also be more expensive depending on if you have specific needs. For example, when building a Home Theater PC, I was looking for a case that did not look like a PC box and also had room for 6 hard drives. I ended up with a Silverstone CW02 case which costs $400. That doesn't include other things like extremely quiet fans, enterprise class hard drives, etc....
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February 12, 2011 3:26:00 PM

It is always better to build your own computer, but if you dont have to confidence or time... this is a pretty good deal for what you want. It is an open box, and will sell fairly quickly, You will have plenty in your budget to buy a good GPU.

Newegg open box system :) 
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February 12, 2011 3:35:14 PM

Pest64 said:
Hello,
Currently I am using an emachines desktop pc to play WoW, SC 2, Warhammer and all that fun stuff. Lately I have been having some issues with lag and starting problems and I have been considering buying a new one anyways seeing how it is about 5 years old...

My dilemma is that I am unsure if I want to buy all the parts and build my own pc or just buy a tower from bestbuy and upgrade the graphics card (which is what I did with the emachines)

My budget is approximately 4-600 and I don't want anything that can run crysis 2 at full blown capacity, but I want to enjoy my games without having to knock down all the graphic qualities to the bare minimum which is what I currently have to do. I have been reading online about how to build a computer and it doesn't seem TOO complicated but from what I see online the price is generally equal to a store bought one.

This ACER seems like a good buy.. Phenom II quad core http://www.bestbuy.ca/en-CA/product/acer-acer-aspire-de...

Any tips and advice would be GREATLY appreciated

Thanks in advance!

Hi Pest64 :hello:  ...I agree with another man that has posted on this post & that is about using your old parts & mixing them up with new ones that you will buy :pt1cable:  ...I would go one up on him though,that is still get fairly good Intel based hardware and buy these Intel parts slower then you want to & that way you can gradually build your new PC :)  ...1) Use your old case...2)Buy a new motherboard...3)Buy a new cpu...4)Check to see if your old cpu cooler can get a new bolton bracket to fit your new cpu socket area e.g. :- Thermalright bought out the Thermalright Ultra 120 extreme cpu cooler with LGA 775 bolton brackets first,then LGA 1366 came out also,then LGA 1156 came out for the same cpu cooler...Do you get what I mean...If it can not get a new bolton bracket then you will have to buy a new cpu cooler or just use the stock one that comes with your new Intel processor until you can afford a performance cpu cooler...5)Check out your RAM requirements ( DDR3 are fairly cheap now,but get the cheapest for now )...6) Use your old power supply unit for now that came with the case if you can handle that...7) Keep your old graphic card for now ( this is only depending on the price that you have paid for the cpu & motherboard & sticks of ram )...8) Use your old Hard Drive Disc for now...9) Use your old LCD monitor & you know that will fit your old VGA port...10) Do you have a retail boxed operating system or do you intend to go the OEM way...On eBay there are still a lot of XP Pro x32 & XP Home x32 retail boxed operating systems up for sale,whether they are new or used...As long as they load up and you can get them past the the microsoft verification process & if you can not get it past then quickly complain to the eBay seller who sold the item to you...Do this quickly though and do not procastinate as I have done in the past and have found out that I was too late to get a refund due to eBay's 45 day time limit to complain...Also make sure you check out that the eBay seller you intend to buy from has a good enough record to trust...Also if you want to use your old OEM operating system disc,some of these local PC hardware shops may load it onto a new motherboard for you,but you may have to buy a few hardware parts from them to do it at a price though...Also remember if you do use an old OEM operating system disc and move it onto a new motherboard that you may not be able to use it more the one more time...These local PC shops can do this,because they say that it is moved because of a warranty claim :)  ...Just use your imagination for the rest if I have left out anything...Remember that if you choose to do it my way,then the only new hardware parts for now will be the processor,motherboard,ddr3 sticks of ram and maybe the graphic card,but I would hold on to this old part so you can get the best you can with your available money of the first 3 PC hardware I told you to get...If you want to buy now then may be parts for the P55 intel based system or even the P67 intel based system ( do not forget about the faulty cougar chipset intel problem (P67 chipsets ))...If you do go with AMD based system then these products are usually cheaper then the Intel systems,but in the long run I would just go Intel instead and buy only the minimum parts now and slowly build your new system by taking off the old parts and one by one adding the new parts :)  ...I hope that this post was not too long to handle,but I thought I would explain it the long and simple way :wahoo:  ...Make sure of one more thing and that is the alignment of your new motherboards screw holes and your old PC case screw holes,because some PC cases are very old and had a different system at one time...
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