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Sub $900 MicroATX gaming system - Opinions welcome!

Last response: in Systems
March 24, 2011 11:10:02 PM

Hey guys, I had this little system in mind. I'm planning to do some light gaming (WOW, SC II, and possibly Diablo III), plus the usual productivity work + browsing the web and watch movies. Specifically, I would like to know if the video card will be enough to play the games mentioned in full 1920 x 1080 at hight settings. I decided to go for the 2400 i5 cause I've been doing some video editing and encoding lately and I feel the 4 core will get the job done much faster. I considered getting the 2500k, but I've never OCed before and I think the 2400 will suffice for my needs. Any input given will be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Case: LIAN LI PC-A04B Black Aluminum MicroATX Mini Tower Computer Case

CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz (3.4GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52400

Motherboard: MSI H67MA-E35 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel H67 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

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

PowerSuppy: SeaSonic X Series X650 Gold ((SS-650KM Active PFC F3)) 650W ATX12V V2.3/EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS GOLD ...

Ram: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-4GBRH

Drive: ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM

HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Total Cost: $848.92 + Shipping

Best solution

March 25, 2011 6:45:33 AM

If you look here, you can see that the 6850 offers playable framerates with no anti-aliasing employed. If you can live without AA, well and good...but if you want AA, you'll either have to do it at the expense of AF or risk stuttering frame rates. A better GPU would be more future proof, in case you decided to play some other games like Crysis 2 or Metro 2033 down the line.

Have a look at this and use this for comparison.

Do you really need a Seasonic X-series PSU? I would suggest the Corsair TX650 V2 instead. You can use the money you save for a GPU upgrade. Try using this to calculate your PSU requirement.

I would also suggest a case downgrade in favour of a GPU upgrade.

Also, I would think twice before buying a card from HIS... I'd suggest you consider the more popular vendors like MSI, Sapphire and XFX... maybe even PowerColor. XFX has a lifetime warranty, so that (IMHO) gives it an edge over the rest.

Here's the configuration I would suggest:

> Case: IN WIN Dragon Slayer Black -- $80

> Processor: i5-2400 -- $190

> Motherboard: Unchanged -- $100

> GPU: XFX HD-695X-CNFC Radeon HD 6950 2GB -- $275
This GPU can be unlocked to a 6970 by a BIOS flash.

> RAM: Unchanged -- $55

> HDD: Unchanged -- $65

> ODD: Unchanged -- $26

> Power Supply: Corsair TX650 V2 -- $100

TOTAL: $891 + shipping ($22.10) = $913.10

Not too bad, eh? Have fun. ;) 
March 25, 2011 11:42:53 AM

Best answer selected by Crackovia.