CPU, Motherboard and RAM - need suggestions/advice (gaming rig)


I'm buying some upgrades for my PC on Sunday from the computer markets. Main upgrades are new CPU, new Motherboard and new RAM. If enough money is left over, a new case and PSU.

My current system specs:

AMD Anthlon X2 4800 2.5gHz
Kingston DDR2 800mHz Ram 2GB
Nvidia Geforce 9600gt 1gb GDDR3
MSI K9AGM2 Motherboard
Widetech 550Watt Supersilent PSU


I have 650 dollars, I have 2 CPU's i'm tossing between, 3 motherboards, and still undecided on RAM. It depends what the computer market stalls have available also however they are usually up to date with their goods and cheaper then online prices.

I need some opinions on the parts below:

CPU : AMD Phenom II x6 1090T 3.2gHz Black Edition or AMD Phenom II x4 970 3.5gHZ Black Edition?

Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-M or M4A88T-M or M4A89TD PRO?

RAM: Kingston / GSKILL / Corsair DDR3 1333Mhz 4GB? (Maybe 6GB if I can get a deal)

I also have concerns that my PSU will need upgrading, the old 550watt may be too weak, tempted to get a better known brand one. Suggestions?

I'll be getting a new case as well. Other things like 1TB HDD to replace the 250GB one, or new GFX card can be bought later on.

Thanks to anyone who can help out. This is the first PC built myself, I know how to build it, but have never bought the parts and attempted it myself, excited XD
4 answers Last reply
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  1. For the CPU, both are good CPUs, but the Phenom II x6 will be a better performer, kinda simple reason why. Its a hex-core CPU.

    I say get the M4A88T-M mobo, its a good price, full of features and one of the easiest to get.

    For the RAM, go G-SKill those other guys arent as good, and do not get 6GB of ram, most chipsets dont support 6GB, you either have to go 4GB or 8GB. The intel x58 chipset is one of the few i know that can support 6GB of RAM.

    For the PSU, get like a 650W Corsair, great solid PSU. Keep you running for a while.

    And just for the future, get a 1TB Samsung Spinpoint F3, one of the best HDD you can get.

  2. I wouldnt get either of those CPUs, for most tasks the 1090T actually gets beat by the quad cores, so i would save a ton and pick up a 955 or a 965 and a nice cooler to OC it with.

    Whats the pricing difference on those boards? All three likely have all the features you need so i would go for the cheapest or which ever one you can find a nice combo with.

    You only need 4GB of ram for most things, only need more for heavy photo/video editing.

    For the PSU, i suggest the Seasonic S12II 520W unit, its plenty for any single card and usually a pretty good value. Other options to consider are the Antec TP-550, or Corsair 550VX, if you can pay a bit more the XFX 650W units usually have pretty good rebates on them.
  3. Ughh... The M4A88T mobo's from Asus are over priced and not worth what they're priced at... The Asrock 770 Extreme3 USB 3 Sata 6 at 70$ is a great budget upgrade. Plus it has the latest USB 3 support and SATA 6. The good thing about the board is it'll supply everything you need and a 16x 2.0 slot. If you think you'll need two PCI 16x 2.0 slots Then I recommend the Asrock 870 Extreme 3 USB 3 SATA 6. It's got everything the 770 has, but an extra PCI 16x 2.0 slot and a new chipset. Both are ATX so it's goood to go on fitting two cards.

    Extreme3 770: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157195&cm_re=770_Extreme3-_-13-157-195-_-Product

    Extreme3 870: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157195&cm_re=770_Extreme3-_-13-157-195-_-Product

    Hunter is correct imo. Just save the cash and get a 955 and or 965. The 955 is a good choice though, plus the stock heatsink isn't any slacker/slouch so it's good to go. A good choice for the ram though is any Mushkin ram since they're budget oriented. BTW Mattius, any platform supports 6gbs, it's just 1366 supports triple channel, just clearing that up... Saying that 1366 is the only platform supporting 6GBs is wrong.

    Umm for ram I suggest just 4gb is good enough, I recommend this set of ram.
    Mushkin Blackline DDR3 1333, from 1600 and 1333 you'll see no difference unless you benchmark... Soo.... DDR3 1333 is good enough.


    For a PSU I agree with hunter, those PSU's are good enough. I think total though, if we add up the ram of 70$+155$(CPU)+100$-ish(Mobo)+90$-ish(PSU)=425$ So you'll have 225$ to buy a graphics card.

    XFX 650w: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817207007&cm_re=xfx_650-_-17-207-007-_-Product

    The white one and the green really have no sig. difference other than the plugs... Or so I think... Here is the original XFX 650w.

    XFX 650: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817207002&cm_re=xfx_650-_-17-207-002-_-Product

    Reviews for the XFX: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/XFX-650-W-XXX-Edition-Power-Supply-Review/899/10
  4. OH an HDD, a clear decision is the Samsung F3 1TB for sure.


    Reason: Cheap and fast, the 500gb platter size beats out the WD Blacks of the SATA 3 lineup which only have 320gb platters, this is great because for the price, it's even cheaper than the WD Blacks per gig. And it's faster.

    Review: http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/storage/2009/10/06/samsung-spinpoint-f3-1tb-review/10
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