Long time Mac user looking for advice on his first PC build. Been used to all-in-one since 1995 (first computer was a Performa 5200CD!). Now need to replace my 4.5 years old iMac, mainly for some moderate gaming. Must say I'm very nervous about breaking anything (or everything for that matter) in the process, but at the same time it should be more satisfying than buying pre-assembled.
Approximate Purchase Date: This week
Budget Range: $1200 CAD more or less - need to buy monitor, OS, and keyboad
System Usage from Most to Least Important: Some moderate gaming, mainly Eve Online MMORPG (link to system requirements) that I've been playing on my iMac. Since the Mac isn't a serious gaming platform, I'll probably want try a lot of new games on Windows, mainly strategy games and some RTS (I'm not into First-person shooters), some movie watching. I'll keep the iMac for Office stuff, music and such.
Parts Not Required: Speaker set
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: (e.g.: newegg.com, ncix.com -- to show us selection & pricing)
Country of Origin: (e.g.: Grand Fenwick)
Parts Preferences: Not any really, except for quality ones (I'm a noob). 23-24 inches screen is a big plus.
SLI or Crossfire: Probably not needed
I've come up with this build that seems reasonable, but I'm not sure (might be overkill for current use). I also need to know if there's compatibily issues. I'm looking for some upgradeability potential, hence the AM3+ motherboard. Really need input from the experts.
Seagate Barracuda ST31000524AS 1TB 7200 RPM - $65 (MOBO only support 6.0Gb/s)
a SATA 6G controller will support SATA 3G. so you can get a SATA 3G rated drive if you want. you only need 3G for mechanical HDD's anyway. the new generation of SSD's will utilize the additional Speed of the SATA 6G controllers, but not mechanical HDD's.
Not a fan of the GTX 465. there's just not enough difference in a GTX 460 and the 465 for the price premium. I would rather put the $ to a OC'd 460 or HD 6850. with the HD 6870's prices falling yo might want to bump up to one for another $20, you get a significant performance boost. http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
Most of the stuff Chester suggested are good, I would upgrade to the i5 if you are planning on doing a decent amount of gaming. With a $1200 price point you should be prioritizing the most important stuff first, like the processor.
I would drop to a regular 460, that should be enough to play the type of games you are looking for, and the motherboard Chester suggested supports SLI so you can pick up another 460 down the road.
^Props to Why_Me's build above, very solid with great power, and easily upgradable by simply adding ram or another 560, very scalable.
All good brands, altho I've never dealt much with BenQ monitors, but other than that I'd go for it.
In the future if you want to turn this machine into blazing fast and top of the line you can do it in 3 steps. 1. Add 4 more gb of ram, same brand. 2. Add another gtx 560 in SLI config. 3. Buy an SSD for OS drive and use 1tb as storage. That's it.