Outdated Gamer's 1st Build

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:Dragon Rising, maybe COD:BO, also might get into F1 2010 as well.

Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks.
17 answers Last reply
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  1. 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=N82E16811129066
    Case Fan - Later - Antec Blue 120 mm http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835129016
    PSU - $100 - XFX Black Edition750 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817207003
    MoBo - $390 - ASUS P8P67 Pro Combo http://www.newegg.ca/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.575892
    CPU - incl. - Intel Core i5-2500K w/ above
    RAM - $110 - (2 x 4GB) Corsair CAS 9 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145324
    GFX - $250 - EVGA GTX 560 Ti http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130604
    GFX - Later - Same
    HD - $55 - Spinpoint F3 1 TB http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152185
    DVD Writer - $23 - ASUS BR Model BC-08B1LT http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135221
    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=N82E16820227550
  2. 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.
  3. Just curious, but the MAC didn't have speakers, kb, and monitor you could salvage?
  4. 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?ItemList=Combo.591935

    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=N82E16824009266

    and an inexpensive keyboard/mouse combo: Logitech, $21.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16823126097
    $1034 total
  5. 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-bit,2770.html
  6. 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=N82E16827106289

    Case
    antec 300 $60 w/ $15 MIR
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042

    HD
    7200.12 1tb $55 w/ promo code
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148433

    Monitor
    Asus 21.5" 1080p $160 w/ $15 MIR
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16824236099

    GPU
    PNY 1gb GTX 460 $190 w/ $20 MIR
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814133326

    PSu
    XFX 650 $95 w/ $30 MIR
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817207002

    Speakers
    Logitech s-220 $28
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16836121014

    RAm
    Ripjaw x 8gb ddr3 1600 cas 9 $90 after promo code
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231428

    OS
    Win 7 $90 after promo code EMCKHKG22 (this is a unlisted promo code)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116754

    CPU/mobo
    Asus evo and Phenom IIx6 1055t $280
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.592304

    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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. They're all $250 atm, so just go with EVGA for the warranty.
  10. That's what I was thinking. EVGA has a great warranty and all the reviews seem to be very good.
  11. 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
  12. 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 $$$.
  13. 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
  14. 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=N82E16811119197

    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=N82E16814130604

    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?ItemList=Combo.596005

    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.
  15. 880 Is fine. Its a single GPU mobo.
  16. 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-build-gaming-computer
  17. 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-build-gaming-computer


    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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