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$500 gaming / home desktop first build. Compatibility and suggestions?

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April 1, 2011 3:03:40 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: Within the next month or so.

Budget Range: $500 to $560

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Mostly for surfing the internet, but I may start to play games if my computer is capable to play them.

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.ca or tigerdirect.ca

Country of Origin: Canada

Parts Preferences: I chose all the parts for a computer and they are listed at the bottom of the page. Any suggestions would be great.

Overclocking: This is my first time building a computer so I have no clue what overclocking is. If anyone could explain to me what it is, then it would be great.

SLI or Crossfire: Confused on this one too so if someone could explain, it would be greatly appreciated

Monitor Resolution: 1440 x 900

Additional Comments: Quiet would be nice considering how my computer I'm irritated by my current computer which is as loud as a radiator. Although it may seem like a noob question to ask, but is it possible to take out the current DVD drive from my computer and insert it into the new build?

The current parts that I have chosen are:

Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz 2 x 256KB L2 Cache 3MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I32100

MSI H61MU-E35 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI USB 3.0 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-10600CL9D-4GBNT

HEC Blitz Black Steel Edition ATX Mid Tower Computer Chassis Gaming Case w/ Front Blue LED 120mm Fan & Top 120mm Fan

EVGA 01G-P3-1450-TR GeForce GTS 450 (Fermi) 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Again I'm looking if these parts are compatible or any suggestions on better parts that fit within my budget. Thanks in advance!

More about : 500 gaming home desktop build compatibility suggestions

April 2, 2011 3:03:15 PM

Not even one post? Could anyone please check for compatibility or give any suggestions for better parts?
April 2, 2011 4:04:31 PM

Overclocking:
Generally a massive waste of time to make the system run slightly faster. I could describe it in detail but Wikipedia probably does it far better. Given it's your first build this is something you may want to explore later. Just get your system build and running smoothly without issues before you overclock and ruin it's stability (which is often the fallout of overclocking)

SLI / Crossfire:
Also generally a massive waste of time. The basics of it is that you have two or more graphics cards that work together to run graphics tasks. The performance is improved but rarely linearly i.e. using two graphics cards does not mean you get twice the performance you will get some performance between 1 and 2 times a single card.

So it costs twice (or more) the price. You pay double (or more) the electric bills. And you often don't get twice (or more) the performance. So what on earth is the point? Price / Performance ratio! On occasion running two cards in SLI or crossfire will perform better than a higher spec card but cost less.

Other Questions:
The i3 with the standard cooler will be almost silent. The case fans may be noiser but are easily replaceable if you find this. GPU fans can be insanely frustrating when it comes to playing games and they can get rather noisy. I've always found that HIS Ice-Q versions of graphics cards are good for sound levels but I don't think they only do ATI cards. The PSU you've got could be a little noisy but I'm glad you've not picked a horrific one - more on this later.

You will not be able to use your old DVD drive if it's IDE. That motherboard seems to only have SATA connectors. You can get IDE to SATA connectors but you may as well pick up a new drive instead in this case.

Hardware:
Curious as to why you've gone for a 500GB drive. If you spend a little bit more you'll be able to double your capacity?

I'm sure the Antec PSU will be fine for your build. I have no idea on how noisy it is though. Web reviews should be able to tell you that. It's always good not to skimp on power supplies and it looks like you haven't. You may want to see if you can pick up a modular psu instead though. It'll cost you slightly more but it will your build less frustrating.

At a glance it seems like this will all work together but I've not checked in great detail.

Sorry I can't give you stronger suggestions on particular components. I'm not up to speed on the latest price / performance hardware because I haven't build a desktop system in a while. It's also complicated by the fact that I'm from the UK so the prices don't match!
!