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Outdated Gamer's 1st Build

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February 3, 2011 5:32:05 PM

So I am a gamer from several years back and I am looking to build up a gaming pc. I used to game on just store bought PC's before but mostly because I only played CS 1.6, CS source and Half Life 2. Then I switched to Mac for video and photo editing. Now the mac is dead and not worth fixing anymore so it's time to go back to PC's. This will be the first PC I have built on my own.

Purchase Date: 2-3 Weeks

Budget Range: $1100 or less.

System Usage: Gaming, Photo Editing (CS5), CAD Programs (SolidWorks & Pro E), HD Movie streaming, Internet Usage, General Microsoft office programs

Parts not required: I do have a Logitech MX Revolution, but wouldn't mind upgrading since it's kind of a pain to get it to sit on the charger properly. Otherwise I need everything including Monitor, Keyboard and headphones/mic or speakers.

Preferred Websites: Newegg

Parts Preference: I prefer AMD to Intel but I would consider either, It's been so long that I feel really out of touch as to what is good for my needs now.

So here is what I have so far. Please let me know if anyone see's any problems or things I should change. I am completely open to anything. But I cannot go over $1100 at all. My wife doesn't see the need for a computer to cost more than that, it was hard enough to convince her to let me spend $1100.

Case: Antec 300 Case

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition

MOBO: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AM3 AMD 880G SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBXL

PSU: Antec EarthWatts EA650 650W

Video Card: HIS H685F1GD Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

Hard Drive: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 1TB

Disk Drive: LITE-ON 24X DVD Writer W/ Lightscribe

Monitor: LG W2253VP-PF Glossy Black 21.5" 5ms Full HD HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor

Speakers: LOGISYS Computer SP8000BK 4.1 Speakers

Keyboard: LITE-ON SK-1788/BS 2-Tone PS/2 Wired Standard Keyboard

OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit

Total Price: $1075.85 W/ Mail In Rebate $1045.85

The CPU and Mobo are in a combo and so are the case with the OS.

And in case anyone is wondering, I am planning on playing mostly Steam games, Duke Nukem Forever (whenever it finally releases lol), ARMA 2, Operation Flashpoint:D ragon Rising, maybe COD:BO, also might get into F1 2010 as well.

Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks.

February 3, 2011 5:59:21 PM

CAD and CS5, movie editing are things that significantly benefit from CUDA so you should be leaning nVidia. As for AMD, I just don't see AMD being competitive, at least i didn't till a few days ago. My advice would be to sit until April when the replacement Sandy Bridge MoBos are expected.

Case - $165 - Antec 300 Illusion Combo http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Case Fan - Later - Antec Blue 120 mm http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PSU - $100 - XFX Black Edition750 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
MoBo - $390 - ASUS P8P67 Pro Combo http://www.newegg.ca/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Item...
CPU - incl. - Intel Core i5-2500K w/ above
RAM - $110 - (2 x 4GB) Corsair CAS 9 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...
GFX - $250 - EVGA GTX 560 Ti http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
GFX - Later - Same
HD - $55 - Spinpoint F3 1 TB http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...
DVD Writer - $23 - ASUS BR Model BC-08B1LT http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1682...
OS - Incl - Included in Antec Case combo

$1,093

Would strongly suggest going $98 over budget w/ an SSD

SSD - $105 - OCZ Vertex 2 3.5" 60GB http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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February 3, 2011 6:01:41 PM

The main issue is I need a monitor, keyboard and speakers. And all of it has to stay under budget. I may be able to get a little larger budget but it's not likely.
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February 3, 2011 6:37:51 PM

Just curious, but the MAC didn't have speakers, kb, and monitor you could salvage?
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February 3, 2011 6:58:24 PM

Re: Mac monitor/keyboard/mouse: not really. Single button mouse. and the monitor is all-in-one style, an dthe keyboard leves a lot to be desired ( a$6 Rosewill keyboard has a better feel)

I'd suggest this $864 combo as a very solid build:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

the Thermaltake PSU included is a decent, 2nd tier supply.

add a nice Acer 23" monitor for $146.99:

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

and an inexpensive keyboard/mouse combo: Logitech, $21.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$1034 total
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February 3, 2011 7:15:23 PM

CUDA Acceleration might be out of his price range. I might pony up a little extra for the 1055T. That will help with CS5 as well. Also, to take advantage of CUDA, looks like he will need a GTX 470. This is from the list of supported graphics cards on the adobe website. Most likely that is out of his price range.

http://www.adobe.com/products/premiere/systemreqs/

Also check here for what 6 cores and a cuda graphics card will do for you:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/adobe-cs5-cuda-64-b...
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February 3, 2011 7:54:46 PM

You can definitely do a good workstation/gaming build if you don' t mind using last gen tech. IE no BD or SB.

Optical
Liteon $16
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case
antec 300 $60 w/ $15 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HD
7200.12 1tb $55 w/ promo code
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Monitor
Asus 21.5" 1080p $160 w/ $15 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU
PNY 1gb GTX 460 $190 w/ $20 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSu
XFX 650 $95 w/ $30 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Speakers
Logitech s-220 $28
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAm
Ripjaw x 8gb ddr3 1600 cas 9 $90 after promo code
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS
Win 7 $90 after promo code EMCKHKG22 (this is a unlisted promo code)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU/mobo
Asus evo and Phenom IIx6 1055t $280
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Promo Codes USed:EMCKHKJ22 EMCKHKG22 EMCKHKJ24 EMCKHKJ23

Total: $1087.23 including shipping
After Rebates/$10 gift card: $997.23


Leaves you a small amount of money to pick up a cheap keyboard and mouse pre rebates.

You can actually upgrade to a GTX 560 if you're ok with being under $1100 after rebates.

This build has 8gb of RAm and 6 cores and a CUDA GPU for workstation, and will still be great even for 1080p gaming.

Not all parts are the cheapest possible, but everything there is high quality.
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February 3, 2011 8:04:02 PM

Oh Re: SSD, I personally wouldn't try to squeeze one in on your budget, but it is doable. If you do get one, don't get anything smaller than an 80gb.

Win 7=20gb
CS5=15gb
Other essential software=5-15gb

Then unless you do tweaking and junctioning
another couple gigs to windows stuff like temp files and system restore.
Hibernation reserved space, couple more gigs
Virtual memory another ~5 gigs

Then the need to leave ~12% free space on SF drives, 7% on Intel SSD's.

Basically adds up to 80gb min.

If you're going for ~$1100 after rebates and all, you can grab a 80gb vertex 2 for $140 w/ promo code EMCKHKG66 (also unlisted code) and MIR.
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February 5, 2011 12:14:13 AM

So after taking a look around my parents place, I found my old mac keyboard. So I don't need the keyboard or mouse now. Plus I talked with my brother in law and he is upgrading his monitor in a few months. He is gonna give me his LG 22" monitor. Till then I will just use my Samsung 20" 206BW monitor that I still have. It will work for now and hopefully in the next year or so I can upgrade to something better.

This will deduct $159 from my current total. My brother in law recommended I go for a GTX 560 Ti with the extra cash.

So I am gonna go with Banthracis' build after a discussion with my brother in law, he is using the X6 1055t and highly recommends it over a Phenom II X4.

Anyone recommend any certain GTX 560 Ti? I don't think I really want or need a SSD quite yet.
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February 5, 2011 12:57:43 AM

They're all $250 atm, so just go with EVGA for the warranty.
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February 5, 2011 1:27:33 AM

That's what I was thinking. EVGA has a great warranty and all the reviews seem to be very good.
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February 5, 2011 2:20:53 AM

if you get an X6, I'd suggest the 1075 (3.0 Ghz/3.5 turbo) or 1090 (3.2 GHz/3.6 turbo, black edition), which are $189 snd $199 right now
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February 5, 2011 2:35:53 AM

ScrewySqrl said:
if you get an X6, I'd suggest the 1075 (3.0 Ghz/3.5 turbo) or 1090 (3.2 GHz/3.6 turbo, black edition), which are $189 snd $199 right now


What's the point in spending more when I can just OC to those levels? I know the 1090 black edition is more OC friendly but IMO it's not gonna be worth the extra $$$.
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February 5, 2011 3:51:43 AM

quality. the 1075 and 1090 are generally better binned than 1055s, so they'll OC better on the same voltages, usually end up stable 100-300 MHz higher
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February 7, 2011 8:34:40 PM

So as it sits here is my list to order once my tax return comes in.


Optical
Liteon $16
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827106289

Case
Coolermaster 922 HAF $99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HD
7200.12 1tb $55 w/ promo code
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6822148433

GPU
EVGA GTX 560 ti $250
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSu
XFX 650 $95 w/ $30 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817207002

Speakers
Logitech s-220 $28
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6836121014

RAm
Ripjaw x 8gb ddr3 1600 cas 9 $90 after promo code
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231428

OS
Win 7 $90 after promo code EMCKHKG22 (this is a unlisted promo code)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6832116754

CPU/mobo
ASUS EVO3 880G and AMD 1090T Black Edition $299
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Total: $1039 before Promo codes.

Is the 880G a good mobo for my situation? I only question this since I am not running an ATI GPU so I can't take advantage of the hybrid crossfire setup.


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February 7, 2011 9:29:00 PM

880 Is fine. Its a single GPU mobo.
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February 8, 2011 1:33:53 PM

ahthurungnone said:
This system right now would cost you less than $400, but feel free to make any changes...

http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/304587-13-advice-bu...


Thanks for the advice but that system wouldn't handle CS5, Solidworks or Pro E very well at all. My computers that we used while i was in school were faster than that and they had problems with the programs sometimes.
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