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Please help with a few general homebuild questions.

Last response: in Systems
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February 4, 2011 2:13:47 PM

Hi guys.

I normally research a new build very meticulously for a few weeks at at time every few years when I build a new PC but I simply don't have that option this year as my PC is crapping out on me and I'm working 70 hours a week. So I would appreciate very much if I could get some advice on a few things regarding the current market. As always I trust these forums to be the best place online to get accurate, friendly information.

I am looking to build a gaming PC for somewhere between $400-$700 depending on the bang for the buck. I play some games, do some multimedia stuff, and browse the web, you know the usual. I do not know where the generation gap is for graphics cards and processors right now so if someone could point out where the best value is I would appreciate it. I am and always will be an AMD guy. I would prefer something with the best bang for the buck while keeping in mind future expandability. If that involves doing some core unlocking I am capable of that, but if it is a risky scenario as it has been in the past (e.g. 50/50 shot if you have the right serial number) I would rather pay more for the sure thing. If I can save $100 bucks with a #2 pencil or some other similar trick like in the old days I would be open to that :) 

I also upgraded my graphics card a while back to an Nvidia 9500GT. I don't know if it would be worth buying another and running that in SLI or if the newer cards provide more value. (I also would like to keep it and fix up this old system as a media center eventually anyway if it's not thte best option for the new rig). I always prefer to pay for a little leeway and quality when it comes to a power supply and I prefer something quiet as my pc is near the living room.

HD doesn't need to be over 500G as I have 2TB in external HD's. Alreayd have Speakers, a large HD monitor,keyboard and mouse.


Any general guidance or specific examples would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

February 4, 2011 2:53:58 PM

There's a nice form you can fill out in the sticky, link in my sig, but you've covered most of it.

However, are you in the US, is the budget US $?

ATM it's not a good time to build a new PC. Current mianstream sockets, AM3, 1156 are dead, as in no more cpu's will be made for them.

SB is being delayed due to a recall, expected april. AMD's new bulldozer CPu's are also expected to come out close to then.

If you need PC asap, then AMD wise a Phenom II x4 955 for ~$150 or an athlon II x3 445 for $77 are your best options.

GPU wise, what resolution are you gaming at?
For up to 1080p gaming, best bang for buck right now are HD 5850's which are $150 after rebates.
http://www.amazon.com/DisplayPort-EAH5850-DIRECTCU-2DIS...

Performance wise, it's between HD 6850 and 6870, yet cheaper than a 6850.

For lower than 1080p a 768mb GTX 460 is only $130 after rebates.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

i wouldn't bother SLIing the 9500gt's since either of above cards will beat 2 of em.
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February 4, 2011 4:09:38 PM

Thank you for the response. Sorry about the form. Did not realize it necessary. I am out of the loop so maybe you could explain the new Bulldozer processor to me? Much higher clock speeds or just more threads? If it is more cores will the performance increase be practical and useful when it comes out or is it more of a future proofing thing? Just trying to determine if it is worth the wait. My hand may be forced before then anyway. Oh and I will be running 1080P. Have a nice new Samsung SyncMaster P21350 Widescreen. Also I am in the U.S.

thanks again.
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February 4, 2011 4:19:22 PM

Quote:
If it is more cores will the performance increase be practical and useful when it comes out or is it more of a future proofing thing?


Nope - games aren't even X4 optimised as is


The Game Rundown: Finding CPU/GPU Bottlenecks, Part 2
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/game-performance-bo...
Quote:
Conclusion: A Trend Toward 3+ Cores

The average optimal number of CPU cores suggested by the test results is 2.75, showing a clear trend towards at least three CPU cores.The question of whether the CPU or GPU is most important is easily answered. If you don't have a multi-core CPU, then upgrade it. If you have a dual-core CPU at around 3 GHz, then invest your money into a graphics card, as most games are GPU-limited. This is not something that will change with new DirectX 11 games.

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Best solution

February 4, 2011 4:20:45 PM

$400-$700 range:

965BE + Biostar A780L3G $160
http://www.microcenter.com/specials/promotions/AMDbundl...

Items off Egg $417AR


$577AR in total, go single GPU all the way
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February 6, 2011 4:36:29 AM

Yep happy shopping/building and cheers ^^
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