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$1000 purely on hardware, gaming rig, first time build

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November 18, 2010 3:37:10 PM

Hi guys, I was wondering if you could help me build a $1000 PC purely on hardware. That wouldn't include things like accessories and OS.

My dilemma is ATI appears to be releasing their 6900 series soon, should I just wait for that? I'm not sure I'll be able to afford one of those but I'd love to. I've tinkered in PCs before taking parts out but never built one from the ground up, so I'm a n00b.

Here is my preferences and what it will be used for:

1.)Almost purely a gaming rig with little things like just surfing the net to go with it(obviously). But yea, pretty much will be a pure gaming rig.

2.)Cosmetic design on the case isn't a big thing for me, I just want performance. If it is a roomy case, has excellent airflow, I'll go with it. All about performance, not looks to me. That can always come later.

3.)I'm a OC n00b but I'd like to have a rig that has SOME OC capability. I don't need a rig that can handle super OCing, just something decent, as I doubt I'll get a water cooling system. So, it will probably be all air cooled with the exception of buying a CPU cooler.

4.)I'm thinking of going to a AMD build since they're much cheaper than Intel. From my understanding, they almost have the exact same performance on their CPUs as i7's for gaming. With the exception of OCing, Intel gains a slight advantage, which I'm fine by. Going AMD would allow me more money to put into a awesome GPU, which is obviously the most important thing to me.

5.)I would appreciate a rig that is easy to put together since this is my first time. Hardware that wouldn't really conflict with each other would be nice too. I've read some recent mobo's for instance are having problems recognizing AMD's new CPUs.

6.) Do not need a monitor in the $1000 budget, I already have a really good Samsung monitor that is full HD and I love it.

I think that is it. Obviously I'll be buying the OEM 64bit version of W7. Extra accessories will probably include thermal paste, mouse pad, a couple case fans and a CPU cooler. If you have a recommendation on those let me know. I already have a Logitech G500/G110 M/KB combo, I just need a good mouse pad that doesn't conflict with the mouse.

More about : 1000 purely hardware gaming rig time build

a b 4 Gaming
November 18, 2010 3:51:03 PM

ok, just off the top of my head:

1075t or 1090t 6-core processor

4 GB DDR3-1600 RAM

1 TB Hard drive (Samsung F3)

60 or 90 GB SSD (using sandforce 1200)

AS Rock 870 Extreme 3 board
(with 8x/8x if can crossfire just fine)

HD 6870

HAF 922 case

LG DVD burner.
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November 18, 2010 4:18:46 PM

ScrewySqrl said:
ok, just off the top of my head:

1075t or 1090t 6-core processor

4 GB DDR3-1600 RAM

1 TB Hard drive (Samsung F3)

60 or 90 GB SSD (using sandforce 1200)

AS Rock 870 Extreme 3 board
(with 8x/8x if can crossfire just fine)

HD 6870

HAF 922 case

LG DVD burner.


Is six core really necessary? Games are just now using four cores, correct? The SSD seems like a waste of money for a HDD that big. I was told not to worry about a SSD right now as they probably won't be standard for another few years. I think right now a 7200rpm would be fine for gaming as I have one now and load times aren't a problem in any game I play. Will games start using SSD's as standard soon?

My friend was telling me unless you get a really good deal on the black edition six core under AMD, he said ignore it because they have a new lineup coming out very soon. It would be a waste of money since half games out now barely use six core. He was telling me you can save money like that and get a better six core down the line when games actually start using them.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 18, 2010 4:40:11 PM

Agreed, the 6-core is unnecessary. Most games today only use 2 or 3 cores. The X6s are good processors, but they're really only better than the X4s at 3D rendering and Photoshop, that sort of thing.

SSDs are nice, but not necessary, especially not at your budget. SSDs are not going to be standard for at least a few years, and games won't require their response time for a loooooong time.

I'd consider waiting for the 69xx series just to see if they affect the prices of other cards at all. If nothing else, it will probably drive down the cost of the 5870 a little.

With an X4, an 890GX mobo, 4 GB RAM, a 1 TB HDD, case & PSU, you should be at around $700, leaving about $300 for the GPU, which is more than the 6870, but no idea where that sits for 69xx series pricing.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 18, 2010 5:06:33 PM

a note on why I picked a6-core.

Games today are using 2.75 cores in the recent tom's article with 20 different games.

an article, *TODAY*, on PhysX showed Metro2033 using 90% or more of all 6 cores with CPU-based PhysX.

6-cores is a bit of future proofing: games are already using 4 cores, and 8-cores-on-the-desktop is coming by 2012. By 2012 a 6 or 8 core game as a bleeding edge game will be likely, and this computer should want to last until then.
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November 18, 2010 5:10:04 PM

for games only:
Intel i5-760 (over clock it at least 3.5GHz)= 200 USD
MSI P55A-G55= 150 USD
2 pcs of GTX460 1GB= 400USD
Amacrox Free Earth 650W 85+= 65USD
2x2GB DDR3 RAM= 90 USD
CoolerMaster Hyper plus 212= 25 USD
500 GB Harddrive= 35 USD
Any DVD Writer= 15 USD
Any cheap casing will do= 10 USD
Total: approximately 990-1000 USD
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a b 4 Gaming
November 18, 2010 5:31:05 PM

ScrewySqrl said:

6-cores is a bit of future proofing: games are already using 4 cores, and 8-cores-on-the-desktop is coming by 2012. By 2012 a 6 or 8 core game as a bleeding edge game will be likely, and this computer should want to last until then.


That review of PhysX was an interesting read, but is a) only for PhysX, which provides a marginal benefit in some games, and b) isn't used in many games. That article also mentioned "Quite often, games use a combined CPU + GPU approach, with the highly parallelizable calculations such as particle effects, performed by the GPU and the more static, non-parallelizable calculations, such as ragdolls, performed by the CPU. This is the case in Sacred 2, for example. In theory, the ratio of highly parallelizable calculations should in many cases be too low to really take noticeable advantage of the immense GPU speed."

I'm not sure I agree that 6 or 8 cores is likely for bleeding edge games in 2012.

1) Gaming companies write games for, at best, current generation hardware. More frequently, they write games for the last generation, as most consumers get a new computer every 3+ years. In order to sell games, companies need to have their games actually able to play on a majority of gaming systems that are in existence. In 2012, at best, about 33% of the gaming base is going to have 6+ cores. That's still too soon from a business perspective to require 6+ cores for your game.

2) Traditionally with games, programming for additional parallelization has been difficult. Since a large portion of any game depends on input from the user, there is a limit on how much can be parallelized, even in RTS games that make more use of AI than many other games.

Admittedly, my analysis might be flawed on point 2, but I think that most game companies would be shooting themselves in the foot (especially in the down economy) if they try to push the current available hardware before most gamers are ready. How often does a major game come out that requires people to upgrade their CPU & mobo? And if/when one does come out, how often do people go through with it vs. saying "screw it" and just not buy the game?
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November 18, 2010 5:50:24 PM

That is what I was thinking. Either way, if four core is a problem two years from now, it wouldn't be that big of a deal to just upgrade.

But I've noticed games the past 7 years or so have really slowed down technology wise on PC. It seemed like back in the day you had to upgrade every year. These days, games are optimized on hardware 2 years old. I think it has a lot to do with the console market taking over and the down economy.

I mean, I'm a big fan of the total war franchise. Those games aren't exactly technical powerhouses. Same with Blizzard games...I love all Blizzard games. Most games that are multiplatform are just console ports...with very limited technical advantages over the console on PC. You have a game that comes along every now and then that needs insane hardware like Crysis/Metro. But they've become much much rarer these days. I'm more interested in pure GPU power than a six core CPU right now...I probably should have stated that in my original post.

I've thought about SLI/Crossfire but I'd like to see what the 6900 series offers from ATI. Just some games I'm probably going to play when I get my new PC:

Starcraft 2
Diablo 3(whenever it comes out)
Pretty much all Bioware games including their Star Wars MMO
Total War franchise(looking forward to Shogun 2)
Witcher 2
A lot of console ports like Call of Duty Black Ops, Dead Rising 2, Assassin's Creed Brotherhood etc.
Crysis

I've seen some other games that interest me like Gothic 4(I've never played a Gothic game) and Dungeon Siege 3. Nothing I listed looks like a technical powerhouse except Crysis maxed out. But it still wouldn't hurt for me to get the most bang out of my buck. Playing games with 8x AA/16xAF and max settings is just a bonus that comes with PC gaming.

I think I'm going to wait until the 6900 series comes out and then revisit this thread. Thanks for the help guys.
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November 18, 2010 8:14:54 PM

Quote:
# COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
# ASUS M4A87TD EVO AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
# GIGABYTE GV-N460OC-1GI GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
# CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 ...
# AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX
# G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7D-4GBRM
# Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
# SAMSUNG CD/DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S223C
$732.00
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...


That is actually a great deal...I almost jumped on that and was going to get another GTX 460 and SLI it. But it doesn't look like that mobo supports it...damn!
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a b 4 Gaming
November 18, 2010 8:31:35 PM

Yeah, the 870 chipset isn't for CF or SLI. Theoretically you could get a different mobo and sell that one on ebay or whatever, but at that point the effort required may not be worth it.

Excellent combo for entry-level gaming, though.
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November 19, 2010 2:16:54 AM

I'm sorry but that 6-core stuff is a buncha poo, and Metro sucks balls, 6-core isn't gonna future proof you much, games are still getting used to quad-cores
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December 7, 2010 3:47:58 AM

Ok, I'm revisiting this thread as I think the 69xx series GPUs will be out next week, so I will be building my rig then. I originally said I'd build it on a 1k budget purely on hardware and no accessories added and no monitor. That still stands but I'd like a rig with a little future proof ability, so I'm thinking of dropping on a six core black edition and a 69xx card. Most likely the lowest end 69xx card because I'd imagine they're going to be priced around $350 and the others will be way out my budget range. If I need to stretch my budget slightly over 1k for the 69xx card, I'm willing to do it. But ONLY for the GPU, nothing else.

I know the six core isn't necessary right now and I could probably save $60 to spend somewhere else...but I'd still like a rig that is future proof, at least a little bit. Although I'm a noob at OCing, I will eventually dive into that. Maybe not extreme OCing but I need a decent mobo that supports this and probably the six core. Really don't to get into flashing BIOS as I'm worried I will mess my mobo up. Getting one that recognizes a six core out the box would be nice. I was looking at the ASUS lineup, they have some really attractive mobos with some nice features for OC n00bs like me. Newegg doesn't seem to be throwing a lot of combo deals out right now either. What happened to their listings of all their combo deals under everything? You use to be able to get combo deals with ram/mobos, GPU/mobos, PSU/mobos but it appears they removed all the options for everything...

You'd think Christmas around the corner they'd be dropping deals like they did in late November...

Any recommendations? ASUS looks to have the most attractive mobos for me it seems. Help me out guys, start helping me build a rig now. Newegg is having a 60 day return policy, so I'm definitely shopping there.

A rig that is easy to put together, no compatibility issues and powerful at the same time would be dreamy! I should also mention that if rebates put me under 1k, I'm willing to use the remaining money anywhere to stretch the build further. Does Newegg have a easier way to browse combo offers? Seems like they have so many nice deals but they're hard to browse...I end up putting in specific parts in the search just to see what combos they have with them...very time consuming.
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December 7, 2010 4:49:10 PM

Bump
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December 7, 2010 6:47:51 PM

Didn't read the whole thread just saw some AMD fanboy talk and saw people saying AMDs are better bang for buck for gaming. That(strange as it may sound) is completely false.

Currently nothing amd has to offer beats an i7 950 for games(no six cores or anything the 950 beats AMDs hands down), and even slightly lower an i5 760 is still IMO a slightly better choice than the comparable amd quads(mainly because of increased OC potential and possibilty of sli).
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December 7, 2010 7:11:40 PM

Somebody_007 said:
Didn't read the whole thread just saw some AMD fanboy talk and saw people saying AMDs are better bang for buck for gaming. That(strange as it may sound) is completely false.

Currently nothing amd has to offer beats an i7 950 for games(no six cores or anything the 950 beats AMDs hands down), and even slightly lower an i5 760 is still IMO a slightly better choice than the comparable amd quads(mainly because of increased OC potential and possibilty of sli).


Could you please not bring this in my thread? I'm just looking for help on a AMD build, I've already decided. The route you said is too expensive for me. AMD is a much cheaper build. i7 950 alone is almost $100 more than AMD's best six core...not to mention intel mobos are more expensive...

What I've read is AMD CPUs have similar performance in gaming which is all that matters to me. It is true i7's apparently have more FPS but only when you OC and the difference is not big in gaming. So, the price difference isn't justified for someone like me on a strict budget when I can use the extra money on a powerful high end GPU like 69xx...
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December 7, 2010 7:24:06 PM

What part did you not understand? AMD is NOT similar in gaming and an i5 760 is a better option than any AMD. http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cpus/2010/10/14/amd-ph... It runs circles around AMDs quads for a little more.

Here's an intel system for under a 1K that'll beat any amd system:

cpu: i5 760 @ 4.0 with scythe mugen 2: 240
psu: xfx 750: 110
p7p55d-e: 140
ram: 1600 4gb ddr3: 80
CM 690: 80
1tb HDD: 70
460gtx 0.7gb X 2: 140X2: 260

Which is exactly 1k without combos.
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December 7, 2010 8:16:59 PM

Thanks for the response. I'll take that build in consideration. Interesting to see even at stock the average FPS is a huge difference...

Does anyone have any charts on two GTX 460s compared to one 6870? I'd like to see how far off a 6870 is from SLI GTX 460. That also would give me a good idea how powerful the low end 69xx will be, which is supposedly going to be more powerful than a 5870.
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a b 4 Gaming
December 7, 2010 9:48:27 PM

If you're gaming at 1680x1050 or lower, then yes, CPU does make more of a difference. This is, of course, why CPU gaming benchmarks (including the linked one) test at low resolutions, in order to highlight the differences that somewhat even out at higher resolutions.

If you're gaming at 1920x1080 and up, focus more on the GPU, and less on Intel vs. AMD. Virtually all modern games are GPU-limited at higher resolutions. Yes, CPU does make some difference, but not so much that you should skimp on GPU in order to get a "better" CPU.
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December 7, 2010 10:15:58 PM

coldsleep said:
If you're gaming at 1680x1050 or lower, then yes, CPU does make more of a difference. This is, of course, why CPU gaming benchmarks (including the linked one) test at low resolutions, in order to highlight the differences that somewhat even out at higher resolutions.

If you're gaming at 1920x1080 and up, focus more on the GPU, and less on Intel vs. AMD. Virtually all modern games are GPU-limited at higher resolutions. Yes, CPU does make some difference, but not so much that you should skimp on GPU in order to get a "better" CPU.

Yes, which is exactly why I was looking at a AMD build so I can jump on a 69xx series GPU. I will be gaming at higher res as my monitor is a pretty darn good Samsung. I also figured that despite a 1090t being somewhat slower on 4 core supported games than a i-5, wouldn't it be faster on six core supported games? Isn't this a logical assumption? In other words, giving the rig a little more future proof despite most games not even using four cores yet?

I'm browsing some AMD builds and I'll relay some things when I like what I see to get some opinions. Wish Newegg had a easier way of browsing their better combo offers...
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December 8, 2010 4:09:06 AM

I'm not saying one should concentrate on the cpu, but a better cpu is always better regardless of resolution. And with intel you can get 460gtx sli for 280 or even less sometimes which smashes a 6870 whilst costing 20-30 dollars more. If the cayman series prove good price/performance then great save money on the cpu to go with that, but that chance is slim the setup I listed rivals a 580gtx which is the fastest GPU on the market by quite a distance. For the cayman series to be a better choice than the sli setup I listed it should have to beat the best gpu on the market whilst costing only around 300.

I'm sorry but I just don't see that happening. As of now OC'd i5 + 460gtx sli(be it 0.7gb) is the abosulte best bang for buck setup.

here are some benches. One is between the 5870 and 460gtx 1gb sli and the other between 460gtx 1gb and a 6870. Neither are exactly what I wanted, but it should give you a very rough idea.
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December 8, 2010 4:58:34 PM

Somebody_007 said:
I'm not saying one should concentrate on the cpu, but a better cpu is always better regardless of resolution. And with intel you can get 460gtx sli for 280 or even less sometimes which smashes a 6870 whilst costing 20-30 dollars more. If the cayman series prove good price/performance then great save money on the cpu to go with that, but that chance is slim the setup I listed rivals a 580gtx which is the fastest GPU on the market by quite a distance. For the cayman series to be a better choice than the sli setup I listed it should have to beat the best gpu on the market whilst costing only around 300.

I'm sorry but I just don't see that happening. As of now OC'd i5 + 460gtx sli(be it 0.7gb) is the abosulte best bang for buck setup.

here are some benches. One is between the 5870 and 460gtx 1gb sli and the other between 460gtx 1gb and a 6870. Neither are exactly what I wanted, but it should give you a very rough idea.


EVGA is running a rebate on their 1GB OCed GTX 460s at $179 with lifetime warranties after placed in the cart...


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Two of those at $179 would be a steal, IMO. Think I could fit them in my budget? OS, accessories, CPU Cooler are all beyond the 1k budget I mentioned, didn't want to include those...they will be separate.

Also, seen this combo deal. $554 after $60 rebate...looks like a outstanding deal...until I read the reviews on the GPU. I've never heard of that brand and I can see why now. People don't seem to like them. 650w PSU seems kinda small for those cards too, right? Looked like a good deal too...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?I...

I'm going to see if I can see some more combos, maybe with the EVGA card. Those rebates make the card extremely attractive to SLI...
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December 8, 2010 6:23:49 PM

those Evga cards are great, but come at a price. The other combo you listed sucks though. Overpriced ugly case + overpriced gpus + bad psu leads to well a bad combo lol.

If you take my build(if you want sli intel is the only sensible wya to go really) leave the heatsink, get the 2 evga 460gtxs and get this combo http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... you're already at under 1k

and another great combo http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... both products are pretty good especially at the price
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December 8, 2010 6:44:52 PM

You should get Evga, it's worth the price.
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December 9, 2010 6:15:15 PM

Hehe, I was a bit busy yesterday.

Anyways, I did some reading on SLI/Crossfire. It obviously has advantages but a lot of disadvantages too.

The GTX 570 is very attractive to me right now. Reviews are showing Crossfired 6850s don't beat it, very impressive and it is only $350. Which is a good price range for my budget, although I'll probably have to sacrifice somewhere. GPU is the most important thing to me though. I think it would be best to wait until next week to see how the three 69xx GPUs fair against the 470, mainly the low end 69xx GPU since that will be all I can afford.

i5 is looking like a attractive build but it all depends on what route I go. Anyways, I was looking at AMD mobos and I really like Asus lineup. But I was noticing Asus boards are surprisingly cheap with all their features, is this normal on AMD boards or are they really "budget" boards where the features are unstable? I mean, they have things like TurboV, GPU Boost, CPU Boost, CPU Unlocker. Their boards basically look like they're for people like me who don't know much about OCing. A simple click and your CPU is at 3.7 OCed.

Outside the high end gamer boards that are over $230+...their boards are really cheap and they seem packed with a ton of nice features according to some reviews5
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December 9, 2010 7:28:42 PM

You mean 570gtx right? And yeah that would also be a good choice as sli/crossfire does come with some issues.

As for asus' feature packed boards. It's just that asus, MSI, asrock and many other companies make tons of features which are never used(useless IMO) and advertises them very well. I mean every featureless motherboard works just fine that proves that all those features are stylish at best. I have a gigabyte board(see my sig) and it's rock solid. Gigabyte orientates to raw power and performance and absolutely nothing else. I have more cpu power than asus' top of the line mobo with 2 features dedicated solely for liquid nitrogen cooling. I mean seriously? LN2 cooling on a regular commerial desktop atx board that has less phase power than a featureless gigabyte board dedicated to air cooling(my ud5 btw)? SOmeone was dreaming when they thought that out. And then the feature to add in another add in motherboard board extension for four way sli???? Again someone was dreaming when they thought they'd make people buy a board in 2 parts when they can get a cheaper evga board that seems to be better in every way(and isn't frankensteined together out of 2 parts). I mean there are some nice features but the way I see it you mostle just pay for stuff you'll never ever use. That aside though asus boards and msi boards are very good. But I just prefer gigabyte a touch more.
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December 9, 2010 8:09:03 PM

Hehe, yea the gtx 570 is what I meant.

I'm guessing more features on a motherboard means it has a higher chance of being DOA on arrival. That would be a pain in the butt to put everything together and then have to take it all out and RMA it.

I've read Asus/Gigabyte come with big manuals, which is attractive to me too since I'm going to need documentation with a lot of depth. Like where to plug up this or that...

It is safe to assume that the mobos come with enough documentation for a noob like me, right? My friend builds PCs and he told me I shouldn't worry about anything as long as I read manuals when they come in. I mean, I have seen Youtube videos and it doesn't look hard at all to build a PC. I just don't want to plug something in the wrong slot and blow up all my parts...lol.

EVGA has some $40 rebates on their mobos but I read they don't come with much documentation at all, huge downer there.
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December 10, 2010 1:03:00 AM

Don't worry too much about the documentation if you have any questions use google (or other search engine of choice)
Go with Asus for mobo
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December 10, 2010 4:09:00 AM

I've had gigabyte and asus boards both come with a massive manual that explains everything perfectly, but I wouldn't let a manual influence your choice. Like said above google is your friend when in need :D  or this forum.

And yeah putting together a pc is easy peasy. The only thing you'd want a manual for is for like setting up raid, changing BIOS settings or stuff like that, but I really don't think the quality of the manual should influence your choice you can always find info on the internet.

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a b 4 Gaming
December 10, 2010 9:07:41 AM

Go For i5 with a GTX 570
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a b 4 Gaming
December 13, 2010 3:27:34 PM

deuce985 said:
Anyways, I was looking at AMD mobos and I really like Asus lineup. But I was noticing Asus boards are surprisingly cheap with all their features, is this normal on AMD boards or are they really "budget" boards where the features are unstable? I mean, they have things like TurboV, GPU Boost, CPU Boost, CPU Unlocker. Their boards basically look like they're for people like me who don't know much about OCing. A simple click and your CPU is at 3.7 OCed.


The short answer is that on average, AMD motherboards are cheaper than Intel motherboards right now.

You can get a feature-rich (USB 3.0, SATA 6.0 Gb/s, etc.) AM3 mobo for about $100. The same features on any Intel chip motherboard is generally going to run at least $125-150.

Obviously, you can pay more for an AM3 motherboard than an Intel 1156 mobo if you want to, but there's no need to do so if you don't want to.

I don't think there's a huge difference between the top manufacturers in terms of quality. You'll get a horror/sob story now and again with any manufacturer.
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