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Need Suggestions, First Build, Gaming $2000 budget

Last response: in Systems
March 26, 2011 11:46:12 PM

Hey Community,

I'm in the market for a new PC and after reading articles from a bunch of different places it seems that you can the most for your money by building your own than buying a pre-built. I'm interested to learn and excited to get started. I have a budget of roughly $2000 and don't mind going a little over. Basically, I will do mostly gaming (Crysis 2, Battlefield 3, Shogun 2), Video Editing, and Photo Editing. If you guys could help me out with suggestions for all components that would be awesome. Also, any suggestions for a first time builder? Thanks,


March 29, 2011 11:16:21 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: 1-2 months

Budget Range: $1500-$2100 after rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming, photoshop, website dev, surfing the internet, watching movies

Parts Not Required: Mouse

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:

Country of Origin: United States of America

Parts Preferences: Second Generation of Intel i7 (2600, 2600K), 23"-24" full HD monitor

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution: No clue in this area, I won't be using multiple monitors.

Additional Comments: This is my first build, so I'm excited to learn. I'm comparing building my own to a fully loaded Dell XPS 8300 for about $2000


ATI Radeon HD 5870

12 Gb RAM

24" Full HD monitor


Blu-Ray Combo Drive

Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium

Speakers with Subwoofer

I think this is a pretty good deal, but I want room to expand in the future and the experience.
Related resources
March 30, 2011 12:01:39 AM

$2000 isn't a terrible deal for that system, but there are a few things in there that you could probably save money on and invest in other areas.
For example, is there an specific reason that you want that sound card (or any sound card)?
The built in sound on decent quality modern motherboards is sufficient for most people. If you have a specific need for that then we could keep it in our build recommendations if needed.
Also 12G of RAM is a pretty aggressive spot to start. 4 is sufficient for most folks, 8 is a nice boost. I would recommend starting at 8 and then see how your system runs. If you want you can add 8G more later.
The speakers I'm assuming you want for watching movies correct?
Do you have an existing home stereo system that will be near the PC? If so then we may be able to build your PC with an output that could feed into that.

Best solution

a b 4 Gaming
March 30, 2011 12:15:24 AM

This is better and cheaper:

Intel Core i7-2600K
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB
SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ
LG Black SATA Internal Blu-ray Burner
XFX Black Edition P1-750B-CAG9 750W
LIAN LI Lancool PC-K62
XFX HD695XZDDC Radeon HD 6950
ASUS Xonar D1
Creative Inspire T3130 2.1 Speakers
ASUS ML239H Black 23" 5ms IPS Panel Full HD HDMI LED BackLight LCD Monitor


Putting the parts together is easy once you started

If you want a prebuilt rig try Avadirect but the best is to do it yourself.
March 30, 2011 12:33:16 AM

You should check out the toms hardware 2000 dollar build just posted. It will run circles around that dell. If you wanted to save several hundred bucks, there are certainly places where you could cut the fat (i5-2500k instead of an i7, asus p8p67 pro instead of a revolution, 6950's in 1gb instead of 2gb, cut the ssds - this would save at least $500) but if you were prepared to spend that much on that dell, this will be a HUGE upgrade, and i would just go for it. I would finish the build with a nice 23"-24" Samsung

$2000 Performance PC Component Prices
Motherboard Asus P8P67 WS Revolution: LGA 1155, Intel P67 Express $ 270
Processor Intel Core i7-2600K: 3.4 GHz-3.8 GHz, 8 MB Cache $330
Memory G.Skill F3-12800CL8D-8GBXM: DDR3-1600 C8, 2 x 4 GB (8 GB) $130
Graphics 2 x XFX HD-695A-CNFC: Radeon HD 6950 2 GB, CrossFire $600
System Drive 2 x A-Data S599 64 GB, SATA 3Gb/s SSD $230
Storage Drive Samsung F3 HD103SJ 1 TB, 7200 RPM HDD $70
Optical Lite-On iHBS212 BD-RE: 12x BD-R, 16x DVD±R, 48x CD-R $110
Case Antec Three Hundred Illusion $65
Power Seasonic SS-850HT: 850W, ATX12V v2.31, 80-Plus Silver $130
CPU Cooler Scythe Mugen 2 Rev. B (SCMG-2100) $40

Total Cost $1975
March 31, 2011 3:34:34 PM

Wow! thanks, guys! my email didn't tell me anyone had posted on here but i decided to check today. CopaMundial you are probably right I don't need a Soundcard, but since I have never built before I don't know the quality of onboard sound. I actually was thinking about the $2000 dollar build but the problem is I need a monitor since I've worked with laptops up to this point. Thanks for the build mosox! That looks awesome. Do you think it tops this prebuild I found on iBUYPOWER? It probably does...

Case 1 x NZXT Phantom Full Tower Gaming Case-White

Case Lighting 0 x None-

Processor 1 x Intel® Core™ i7 960 Processor (4x 3.20GHz/8MB L3 Cache)-FREE Upgrade from Intel Core i7 950 Processor

iBUYPOWER PowerDrive 1 x PowerDrive Level 1 - Up to 10% Overclocking-

Processor Cooling 1 x Liquid CPU Cooling System [SOCKET-1366]-[Free Upgrade] Standard 120mm Fan

Memory 1 x 12 GB [2 GB X6] DDR3-1600-Corsair or Major Brand

Video Card 1 x NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570 - 1.2GB - EVGA Superclocked-Single Card

Motherboard 1 x [SLI] ASUS Sabertooth X58-
Motherboard USB / SATA Interface 1 x Motherboard default USB / SATA Interface-

Power Supply 1 x 800 Watt -- Standard-

Primary Hard Drive 1 x 40 GB Intel X25-V MLC SSD-Single Drive

Data Hard Drive 1 x 2 TB HARD DRIVE -- 64M Cache, 7200 RPM, 6.0Gb/s-Single Drive

Optical Drive 1 x [10X Blu-Ray] LG BLU-RAY Reader, DVD±R/±RW Burner Combo Drive-Black

Network Card 1 x [$49 - $20 Instant off = $29] Killer Xeno Pro Gaming Network Card-

Operating System 1 x Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium + Office Starter 2010 (Includes basic versions of Word and Excel)-64-Bit

Keyboard 1 x iBUYPOWER USB Keyboard-Black
Mouse 1 x iBUYPOWER Internet Mouse-
Monitor 1 x 24" LCD 1920x1080 -- (23.6 viewable)-
Speaker System 1 x iBUYPOWER 2.1 Channel Stereo Super Bass Subwoofer

Also, do I need any other cooling system besides the one that comes with the CPU?

March 31, 2011 3:35:47 PM

oh yeah, thats a total of $1999
March 31, 2011 3:56:15 PM

Best answer selected by gbrew345.
March 31, 2011 4:10:03 PM

It's actually not solved! haha sorry guys I didn't know you could only select one best answer. To answer your other question CopaMundial, I don't have a home theater system close to where I want to put this computer and I do watch a decent amount of movies on my PC. thanks for the help guys,