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Building first time PC $900 budget

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March 19, 2011 10:43:08 PM

Getting a new PC built for graduation, and need some advice on what I should have put in it. Budget is about $900.

Approximate Purchase Date: In a month approximately

Budget Range: $900 before rebates


System Usage from Most to Least Important: Play a lot of games. BFBC2, Dragon Age 2, Fallout, Oblivion etc.


Parts Not Required: Do not need OS, mouse or monitor


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Amazon.com , newegg.com , tigerdirect.com, Frys.com


Country of Origin: USA


Parts Preferences: Going for the AMD Phenom II x4 965 black edition with Asus mobo and Cooler master HAF case

Overclocking: Maybe


SLI or Crossfire: No


Monitor Resolution: 1280 x 1024 or 1680 x 1050
Additional Comments: Would like it very quiet with high performance on all the games I play.

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Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-M/USB3 AM3 AMD 880G HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CPU: AMD Phenom II 965 Black
http://www.amazon.com/Phenom-Black-3-4Ghz-512KB-4000MHZ...

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Video Card: I was thinking of an nVidia 400 series or 500 series, or the ATI equivalent, depending on prices.

Case: Cooler Master HAF 932
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Thermaltake TR2 W0388RU 600W ATX 12V v2.2 Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Keyboard: Logitech G110 Black USB Wired LED Backlighting Gaming Keyboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
March 19, 2011 11:12:56 PM

GIGABYTE GA-870A-UD3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
AMD Phenom II X4 955 + XFX HD-695X-ZNFC Radeon HD 6950
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ + CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-650TX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
ASUS Black 24X DVD+R
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
This case is quieter
LIAN LI Lancool PC-K62
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Best solution

March 19, 2011 11:21:48 PM
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http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/102?vs=288 <----- AMD 965 BE vs Intel 2500K

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $124.99
MSI P67A-C43 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... Combo Discount: -$8.00 Combo Price: $246.98
Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1 "Heatpipe Direct Contact" Long Life Sleeve 120mm CPU Cooler Compatible Intel ...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $64.99
Antec BP550 Plus 550W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $89.99 FREE SHIPPING
COOLER MASTER Storm Scout SGC-2000-KKN1-GP Black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... Combo Discount: -$15.00 Combo Price: $329.98 $25 off w/ promo code EMCKGJE69, ends 3/21
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL
GIGABYTE GV-N560OC-1GI GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
Related resources
March 19, 2011 11:27:43 PM

I have been looking around and have heard that nVidia would be best for gaming, the drivers for ATI aren't as compatible as nVidia from what I have heard. The case looks good also, much cheaper, but is the air flow on it better or same as the one i linked?
March 19, 2011 11:33:56 PM

austindc13 said:
I have been looking around and have heard that nVidia would be best for gaming, the drivers for ATI aren't as compatible as nVidia from what I have heard. The case looks good also, much cheaper, but is the air flow on it better or same as the one i linked?

The case you linked is a great case but it's the size of a small house and is meant more for peeps running dual vid cards that are long in size...like a pair of 6870's or gtx 580's. I wouldn't recommend it for a single card set up.

The real deal though is the cpu. That 2500K not only beats anything AMD, it utterly and thoroughly demolishes them. That's the #1 gaming cpu on the market today along with the 2600K. It over clocks like no other cpu before it, and it runs as cool as ice.

That psu I posted is a dandy for that price. It's modular and gives you more than enough juice to run one of those factory over clocked gtx 560's with plenty of juice to spare for over clocking, extra drives, etc...
March 19, 2011 11:36:10 PM

Ahh, people at the electronics store lied to me. Said AMD would be best for gaming. That benchmark says otherwise, thank you for that.
March 19, 2011 11:42:15 PM

Why_me, the PC you linked me looks great, the only problem is the price after shipping and tax, I was planning on pricing it all out online then looking in stores for most of the items. Is there anything cheaper you can find, sorry i'm not as computer savvy as I would like to be and know very little when it comes to building them.
March 19, 2011 11:44:27 PM

You could check out the build in my siggy. The 1000$ is actually in the 950's range now because of price drops.
March 19, 2011 11:49:16 PM

Okay will do Azn.

Would Frys.com be a reliable place to shop from? I have a few near where I live and have been in there and seen good prices on some of this stuff, but I have heard bad things about them. I will change the original post to have that website, and if anyone could get me a build from there, it would be greatly appreciated.
March 19, 2011 11:51:15 PM

For newegg, there's no tax unless you live in a bad state :p 
Looking online is your best bet for the cheapest stuff. You might also be able to get free shipping as well. And amazon has free prime for students, so that might help with the shipping and tax problems as well.
March 19, 2011 11:55:02 PM

Yep, california is apparently a bad state :(  sucks for me.
March 19, 2011 11:59:02 PM

california probably has small shops that sell for cheap though. better than colorado. i have to get everything online because it's so hick here.
March 20, 2011 12:12:51 AM

austindc13 said:
Yep, california is apparently a bad state :(  sucks for me.

You can get the case and a MSI gtx 560 and even that antec psu on amazon

Then go for 4 gigs (2x2gb) of that G.Skill ram i linked.
March 20, 2011 12:30:08 AM

Best answer selected by austindc13.
March 20, 2011 12:34:17 AM

Thanks to everyone for their replies, I think I have made up my mind on what I will be looking for!
March 20, 2011 1:47:45 AM

austindc13 said:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/cart/view.html/ref=gno_cart
http://secure.newegg.com/Shopping/ShoppingCart.aspx?Sub...

That is what I have, cheapest I have been able to get for a while. Too bad I won't be able to get this until next month and some of the deals will be gone.

Next month is even better for the fact all of those P67 mobo's will be on the market, and chances are you will find boards cheaper or even have a better combo deal that the MSI I linked you to.

http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-RR-B10-212P-G1-Univ... $26.43 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master RR-B10-212P-G1 Hyper 212 Plus 775/1156/1366/AMD/AM2/AM3 Universal Direct Contact Heat-Pipe 120mm Fan CPU Cooler

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00243HHNY/ref=ord_car... $89.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master SGC-2000-KKN1-GP Storm Scout ATX/MATX/ITX Mid Tower Case (Black)

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026FCI2U/ref=ord_car... $99.98 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master RC-922M-KKN1-GP HAF 922M ATX Mid Tower Case (Black)

http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Spinpoint-Cache-Desktop-H... $60.72 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Samsung 1 TB Spinpoint 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5 inch Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive HD103SJ

http://www.amazon.com/Antec-BP550-Plus-ATX12V-Modular/d... $64.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Antec BP550 Plus 550W ATX12V V2.2 Modular Power Supply

http://www.amazon.com/MSI-PCI-Express-N560GTX-TWIN-FROZ... $249.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
MSI GeForce GTX560 1 GB DDR5 2DVI/Mini HDMI PCI-Express Video Card N560GTX TI TWIN FROZR II OC

http://www.amazon.com/Lite--LightScribe-Layer-Drive-IHA... $24.49 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Lite-On LightScribe 24X SATA DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Drive IHAS424-98 - Retail (Black)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $41.99 FREE SHIPPING
Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996768

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $49.99 FREE SHIPPING
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL
March 20, 2011 10:44:15 PM

Why_Me said:
Next month is even better for the fact all of those P67 mobo's will be on the market, and chances are you will find boards cheaper or even have a better combo deal that the MSI I linked you to.

http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-RR-B10-212P-G1-Univ... $26.43 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master RR-B10-212P-G1 Hyper 212 Plus 775/1156/1366/AMD/AM2/AM3 Universal Direct Contact Heat-Pipe 120mm Fan CPU Cooler

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00243HHNY/ref=ord_car... $89.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master SGC-2000-KKN1-GP Storm Scout ATX/MATX/ITX Mid Tower Case (Black)

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0026FCI2U/ref=ord_car... $99.98 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master RC-922M-KKN1-GP HAF 922M ATX Mid Tower Case (Black)

http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Spinpoint-Cache-Desktop-H... $60.72 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Samsung 1 TB Spinpoint 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5 inch Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive HD103SJ

http://www.amazon.com/Antec-BP550-Plus-ATX12V-Modular/d... $64.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Antec BP550 Plus 550W ATX12V V2.2 Modular Power Supply

http://www.amazon.com/MSI-PCI-Express-N560GTX-TWIN-FROZ... $249.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
MSI GeForce GTX560 1 GB DDR5 2DVI/Mini HDMI PCI-Express Video Card N560GTX TI TWIN FROZR II OC

http://www.amazon.com/Lite--LightScribe-Layer-Drive-IHA... $24.49 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Lite-On LightScribe 24X SATA DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Drive IHAS424-98 - Retail (Black)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $41.99 FREE SHIPPING
Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996768

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $49.99 FREE SHIPPING
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL


Ah yes, thank you very much... I am most likely going to order online now just because Frys kind of sucks for the P67 Motherboards, and I can find way better deals on newegg and amazon. I will probably be checking every week or so for new deals and price changes. Hopefully things will be a little cheaper next month so I can splurge on a few things.
March 20, 2011 11:07:17 PM

So I just put together this build, it is much cheaper than any other one I have found, I used Tigerdirect.com, no tax in my state and almost identical prices to newegg... this build is using amazon, newegg and tigerdirect.

Cooler Master Storm Scout ATX Mid-Tower Black Case
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

ASUS P8P67 LE B3 Intel P67 Motherboard
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Intel Core i5-2500K BX80623I52500 Unlocked Processor
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

COOLER MASTER Silent Pro M600 RS-600-AMBA-D3 600W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Samsung 1 TB Spinpoint 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5 inch Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive HD103SJ
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001U3S5S0/ref=ord_car...


For the CPU cooling fan, would the stock one work fine if I wasn't planning on doing any heavy duty overclocking? And would it matter if the heatsink I found is LGA 1156 instead of 1155? Since the motherboard I am looking at is 1155?
March 20, 2011 11:14:11 PM

I was also thinking of maybe an SSD. I was reading up on them and even a small one would be great just for my OS and stuff. Any suggestions on which brands are best?

And I most likely will never use 1TB of memory, so im thinking a 500GB hard drive will do for me.
March 20, 2011 11:48:30 PM

Disregard my last post of specs... I forgot the Video Card... haha.

Here we go...

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

Thermaltake TRX-650M TR2 RX 650-Watt Modular Power Supply - 650W, 140mm Fan, ATX, Modular, 80 Plus
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Samsung 1 TB Spinpoint 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5 inch Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive HD103SJ
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001U3S5S0/ref=ord_car...

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EVGA 01G-P3-1556-KR GeForce GTX 550 Ti Video Card
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Cooler Master Storm Scout ATX Mid-Tower Black Case
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

ASUS P8P67 LE B3 Intel P67 Motherboard
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...


Had to downgrade on the Video card because every build was putting me about 50-60 over.
March 20, 2011 11:48:59 PM

austindc13 said:
I was also thinking of maybe an SSD. I was reading up on them and even a small one would be great just for my OS and stuff. Any suggestions on which brands are best?

And I most likely will never use 1TB of memory, so im thinking a 500GB hard drive will do for me.

OCZ, G.SKill, Corsair, and Crucial all make decent SSD's imo.
March 21, 2011 12:12:22 AM

Okay, still on the edge about the SSD, might put me over my budget though, i'll probably decide closer to when I purchase it.
March 24, 2011 8:57:03 AM

Alright guys, heres the newest build I got.

Intel Core i5-2500K
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/ite...

XFX Radeon HD 6850 Video Card
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Cooler Master Storm Scout
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Western Digital WD5000AADS Caviar Green Hard Drive
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

COOLER MASTER Silent Pro M600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Corsair Vengeance 8GB PC12800 DDR3 RAM - 1600MHz
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

ASUS P8P67 LE B3 Intel P67 Motherboard
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...


What do you guys think?
I'm thinking maybe I should just use the stock heatsink on the CPU because I don't plan on doing any overclocking right off the bat and I can always get one at a later date... Also if you have any better suggestions on the motherboard, feel free.
March 24, 2011 9:20:59 AM

Phenom II X4 + HD 6950 >> i5-2500K + HD 6850
!