Building my First Comp

So seeing as i am a poor college student who loves to play wow i decided to build my own Comp to save money. The problem is though is that my mom is going to split the cost with me. So i have about a 700 US dollar budget. I have installed various amount of parts into my existing prebuilt DELL like ram,gpus,cpus, and power supplies, and i am rather confident that i can build my own. But the problem is that since my mom is paying part of the cost of this build i want to ensure her that i am capable of doing it. So my first question is "Is building a comp as easy as everyone says it is?" because i think it is. I have taken apart my current comp down to the basics and have reassembled it with no problems. Also what are the most common mistakes that rookies tend to make on their first build? I have already compiled a list of parts that i am pretty sure will work see the following:

LG DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model GH24NS50 $18.99

Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case $69.99

Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKX 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive $49.99



Antec earthwatts EA500 500W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.2 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC "Compatible with Core i7/Core i5" Power Supply $64.99

Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound $9.99

G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-2GBNQ $32.99

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBNQ $47.99

AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ955FBGMBOX $139.99

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders $99.99

I plan on reusing my ATI HD 5670 until i can get some money then ill upgrade to something stronger but for now the 5670 should be fine for WOW on a 17inch 1280x1024. My goal is to reduce to fps drops in 25mans which is more of an CPU bottleneck than a GPU

Any Advice that is given i appreciate in adavance

Sincerely Tomshardware Reader
29 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about building comp
  1. starkiller123 said:
    Also what are the most common mistakes that rookies tend to make on their first build?
    Go over the "System won't boot" and "no video output" checklist to get insight into the most common mistakes or problems and how to fix them.
  2. Best answer
    starkiller123 said:
    So my first question is "Is building a comp as easy as everyone says it is?" because i think it is.
    It might even be easier - right up till the point in time that a problem crops up.
    To give yourself the best chance of success follow the build outline here.
    Step-by-Step Guide to Building a PC
  3. Combo deal: Antec Three Hundred Illusion Case & Win7 Home Premium 64-bit $165 $5 off

    What are the chances you'll be going with a much larger video card or a 2x Crossfire-x with mid-range cards with your next monitor?
    A PSU upgrade: XFX 650W Modular PSU $95 $30 rebate +$15 to budget a/r XFX 650W review

    Stick with just 4GB RAM for now. You can always upgrade RAM later.
  4. Is their a way to test your ram slots? because the reason i went with 6 was so that every slot was occupied i dont want to get 4 then try to upgrade later and find out 2 of my ram slots are dead. And also regarding newegg how good is the return policy? like if a part is DOA will they replace it without any problems?

    and it may be a while till i can afford a new GPU and Monitor like the earliest i could get a new one would be July
  5. You can use the same set of 2 sticks to test each slot.
    Setup and test in slots 1&3. Then do the same in slots 2&4.

    You could always stick with the EA 500 PSU. It will handle everything but the very top video cards. Some really excellent mid-range cards like the curren HD 6850 would be good.
  6. starkiller123 said:
    And also regarding newegg how good is the return policy? like if a part is DOA will they replace it without any problems?
    Just about the best there is. Almost never a question, unless it's to help you get it working.
    Restocking fee policy is shown if applicable. Some parts have a special return or refund policy - just read the details for each item.
  7. I decided to pick up this mobo instead a bit cheaper and got good reviews

    But i was looking at pics of the board and i notice it had a 8pin power cpu connector will that affect that PSU I have to get? or can i just put the standard 4pin in there seeing as there is a slot filler for the other 4 slots
  8. BUMP before i buy this stuff
  9. I was looking at benchmarks and do you guys think a 6core is worth the extra money
  10. for gaming the 6 core is a waste.
  11. The extra cores don't really seem to bring much in the way of extra performance for gaming.
    And when you start using the highest graphics and image quality settings in games the hex core CPUs usually get nearly the same game performance that quad, tri and fast dual core CPUs get.
  12. Your part list is looking good.
    Everything is compatible.
  13. OK one last question... Seeing as I dont intend to overclock I heard that the AMD CPU comes with pre applied thermal compound is that true? Or should i go ahead and buy some extra thermal paste?
  14. Yes it does. On the bottom of the CPU cooler, pre-applied.
    No need for any aftermarket thermal compound either.

  15. And this is why i am a AMD/ATI Fanboy thx for the help guys :)
  16. How much do you wan to overclock? Both the stock AMD & Intel HSFs allow some overclocking. The stock HSFs do limit how high you can go vs aftermarket coolers.
    Like CM Hyper 212 Plus
  17. The Antec earthwatts EA500 does have the 8 pin aux CPU power connector your motherboard has.
    It also has the 4 pin version.
  18. Hey so i was looking at the ram i picked out and its DDR3 1600 but the MOBO specs doesn't list it as compatible so i decided to get this instead.

    This should do I hope but now Im wondering do I need to make any changes to my RAM settings in the bios in order to get this comp going or will the ram just work as soon as i pop it into the mobo and power everything on. The reason i ask is because i have zero experience with CAS latency and changing the timing for example what does 9-9-9-24 mean and do i have to worry about it when i build this thing?
  19. DDR3 2000(O.C.)/1333/1066 includes DDR 3 1600 & 1866 too.
    DDR3 1600 would run at DDR3 1333 and probably at CL8, maybe even 7.

    Let the motherboard figure out what settings it wants to use for the RAM.
    Once you study up on RAM tweaking you can try other stuff.
  20. Ok so i think that next week i should have my part of the cost to build this thing i would like to thank you guys in advance. Although i am fairly certain that i can do this i am worried about my case.... installing the standoffs seem like a pain... How easy is it to determine where to put the standoffs at and if i plug them in the wrong spot is it easy to correct? Assuming the standoffs are in the right place will the mobo slide right in or will it require a bit more force and wiggling of the mobo before its seated properly.

    In case you wondering i am using the Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case with the ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3.
  21. One trick to getting the standoff's right is to put the MB on a flat piece of paper (a cut up brown bag works great). Mark the standoff locations on the MB with a pen and then use the paper in the case to get the standoffs right.
  22. Step-by-Step Guide to Building a PC is a great starting place.
    You might also look over some the many video guides out there.
    I always recommend people read the "System won't boot" and "no video output" checklist to learn what some of the 'usual' build mistakes look like (and what to do about them).
    -> The usual advice; read the manual / install guide; look at the parts, read the manual again and if everything makes sense and looks right - then go ahead with the install.

    While you're waiting for delivery you can find most of the manuals / install guides online and look them over good - get familiar with the hardware.
  23. Placing the MB on a piece of paper and marking it is Genius! thx
  24. Works a lot better than putting a standoff in the wrong spot and shorting the MB when you power on.
  25. I took it a step further and i looked up the dimensions of the MB from the online manual and I pretty much made a paper replication of the MB with the location of the MB holes drawn
  26. Just Finished the New Build and besides a few quirks like the IO shield not fitting .... BUt so far so good but i have one last question. Do i need any of the this ASUS bloatware? like ASUS EPU
  27. Also i had a hard time putting on the heatsink and fan. I ended up putting it on reverse with the lever facing towards the top of the tower.

    UPDATE i just tried again and got it on the regular way now but i dont think it matters both side of the retention bracket are the same
  28. Best answer selected by starkiller123.
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