$600-800 budget computer (First time building my own computer)

Hi, this is my first post and first time building a computer. This thread is based exactly on the thread of *How To Ask For New Build Advice*

Approximate Purchase Date: From today to maybe the end of this year would be nice.

Budget Range: 600-800 USD. Rebates do not matter to me. Also, if a lower budget could meet my system usage, then that would be great!

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Starcraft 2 on high settings with out any lag at all }{ surfing the internet. STARCRAFT 2 IS THE WHOLE PURPOSE OF MAKING THIS COMPUTER

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

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg but as long as they ship to my country (USA) and are cheaper, I'm fine with it.

Country of Origin: (Korea but I live in America now)

Parts Preferences: I do not really care, as long as they meet my system usage.

Overclocking: Yes, maybe to 4.0 ghz or higher.

SLI or Crossfire: No but I will consider it if it is a great deal on savings and helps ALOT.

Monitor Resolution: 1600 X 900

Additional Comments: A window would be cool I guess. It would be nice to be quiet but I dont really care as long as its not hot. This computer is mainly for playing Starcraft 2 as I am korean, Lol. The cheaper the better and If there are combos available to save money, even if its just a measly 20 dollars, please tell me. I need to save as much money as possible while having an efficient computer.

JUST WONDERING: I looked at the prices, and AMD is ALOT cheaper than Intel. If choosing AMD will save me a couple hundred bucks, I will most definitely go for it, but I am wondering, how much will it affect my gameplay's performance?


Parts that I have already considered: I have not SERIOUSLY considered any parts. I do look on Newegg a lot but I have no idea which would be the best for me. One of my friends who made a computer said an i5 would be good for me and I found this combo.

i5 2500k sandy bridge + MSI P67A-G43 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

If you guys help me on this, I would be REALLY thankful! :]
Help a korean noob play Starcraft 2 please. 감사합니다!!
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  1. The i5-2500k/P67 based mb is the current 'gold standard' recommendation at least 9 times out of 10....

    AMD is still sometimes floated as a recommendation forr sub-$550 builds, but with the i3-2100 outperforming most of the X4 Phenom series of processors in most games, I sometimes wonder why..
  2. I am not a starcraft player, but questions about the requirements come up frequently. I did a bit of research.

    1) SC2 is dual core enabled, and does not take advantage of 4 or more cores.
    2) The game responds to high cpu performance per core, and can be cpu limited.
    3) The graphics requirements are modest.


    for the cpu, the ONLY way to go is sandy bridge of some kind. They are 20% + more efficient than amd on a clock for clock basis, and with the K versions can overclock higher to the 4.0-4.5 level.
    The 2100 Will be $125 and will do the job as an inexpensive option. To do the best, the 2500K at $225 is a no brainer at that price level.

    To overclock, you will need a P67 based motherboard. Most any will do since you have no real need for many slots or sli/cf. The ECS unit is <$100. I have used a smaller ECS motherboard before, and was pleased with it:

    For a graphics card, something like a GTX560Ti or a 6870 should be fine. Currently the 6870 is a bit less than the GTX560ti.
    Either should be satisfactory for you at 1600 x 900. If you go Nvidia, get a EVGA card to preserve your option to trade it in within 90 days if you want more. They should be in ghe $200-$230 range.
    More graphics power never hurts, Particularly if you might upgrade to a higher resolution monitor. IN which case a GTX570 or 6970 would be about as good as you should ever need. You are looking at $300 - $330 here.

    Don't spend lots of money on a case if you are on a budget. Any of the Antec cases(100, 200, 300, 600) have good cooling and are reasonably priced at <$70. Look for free shipping since cases are heavy and can cost $20 to ship.

    Get a Quality 550w or better psu with 38a on the 12v rails. It can power any of the mentioned graphics cards. My short list of quality psu's would include XFX, Antec, Seasonic, PC P&C. or Corsair. Expect to pay $60 -$100, depending on if you will play the rebate game. Look at XFX, since they currently seem to offer some of the best prices like this 650w unit for $59 ar:

    Get an aftermarket cpu cooler with a 120mm fan. It will keep your cpu cooler and quieter. If you OC, you can go higher and easier. Something like the cm hyper212 is only $35. Others will do as well.

    Ram is cheap. Get an 8gb kit(2 x 4gb) of the cheapest compatible 1.5v DDR3 ram you can find. More never hurts, and can help:
    Do not pay more for fancy heat spreaders which are unnecessary, and are mostly marketing. Do not pay more for faster speeds or better timings. The benefit will be perhaps 1% more FPS which is not worth it. Synthetic benchmarks will shine with faster ram, but are irrelevant to real world performance in a sandy bridge cpu.
    Expect to pay $85 or so:

    --------------good luck------------------
  3. Thanks for the advice. I just gathered most of my computer components. Just asking though, I'm trying to go for the cheapest possible while being able to meet my standards (Starcraft 2 1v1, 2v2, on high graphics, no lag) so is this build really the best choice?

    From your post, would this be a good build for a $600-800 budget? Cheaper = Better so if cheaper, please say.

    Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge + MSI P67A-G43 Combo

    CM Hyper 212+

    Radeon 5850

    G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666)

    CORSAIR Enthusiast Series CMPSU-650TX 650W ATX12V / EPS12V

    Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower

    Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

    LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA CD/DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM
  4. Those specs only need a 550w. If you really want a 650w, this is the new version of the tx650 you picked.

    Cheaper ram.

    The c43 is $10 less than the g43, the only differences is the pcie slot and northbridge heatsinks which shouldn't make a difference to you.

    You could go cheaper for the case, maybe a haf 912, elite 430, or as geofelt stated, antec 100, 200, 300, 600.
  5. Looks good.
    Three cost savings suggestions:
    1) XFX is selling good units cheaper. Look at the XFX650w unit for $59 after rebate:

    2) There is a great sale on the Antec 600 case, $45 with free shipping:

    3) The cm hyper 212 has gone up in price due to popularity. An equally good alternative is the XIGMATEK Gaia SD1283 120mm @t $30 with free shipping.
  6. Thanks guys, this comes up to about a total of $750 w/o rebates which meets my budget (also I do not know what rebates are and if they are reliable or not for sending money back).

    Any other build possibilities for cheaper though?
    (AMD, i3, or something that would make this around 100-200 bucks cheaper and still letting me play starcraft 2 on high settings without any lag)

    Oh and how is my graphics card? I realized nobody commented about my graphics card. (I picked a radeon 5850)
  7. Best answer
  8. Best answer selected by jungkyu.
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