Solved

Need Advice on Budget 955 Build

First I want to just give a big thanks to this community!! I use this site and forum as a reference almost daily.

-------------------

Approximate Purchase Date: Within 2 weeks

Budget Range: < $600

System Usage from Most to Least Important: HTPC, Gaming

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor, Speakers, OS,

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, TigerDirect.com

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: AMD CPU, Asus mobo, Corsair PSU

Overclocking: Yes, I want to be able to push the 955 to about 3.6-3.8

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: 1600x900

Additional Comments:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Case: $59.45
Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042


Mobo & CPU Combo: $209.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.681770

ASUS M4A87TD EVO AM3 AMD 870 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131647

AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103808


GPU: $59.99 (Already Purchased)
Visiontek 900310 Radeon HD 5670 Video Card - 1GB, GDDR5, PCI-Express 2.0 (x16), DVI, HDMI, VGA, DirectX 11
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=621465


Memory: $45.99
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231277


HDD: $54.99 - $5.00 CC = $49.99
SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152185


DVD: $20.99
ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204


PSU: $69.99 - $20.00 MIR = $49.99
CORSAIR Builder Series CX600 V2 600W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139028


TOTAL: $496.38 + $10.45 Shipping = $506.83


Final Comments:

My main concerns are the PSU and Cooling.
PSU: Is that PSU enough/overkill for this build? (I don't mind spending a little more for a good psu.)
Cooling: If I want to OC the 955 to 3.6-3.8, will the stock fan be sufficient? If not, then any recommendations? Also how many extra case fans do I need, if any?


Any advice or suggestions are appreciated.
41 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about need advice budget build
  1. First, the PSU is kinda Overkill, but you can leave it, since you can upgrade graphics cards later and stuff. You WILL need a aftermarket heatsink and fan to cool your CPU if you Overclock, the stock isn't enough. You can try the CoolerMaster Hyper 212 $50. And you don't need anymore fans for the case.

    Just telling you, if you plan to upgrade to a better CPU in the future, you might want to buy an AM3+ MoBo instead.
  2. I am all about upgrade ability.

    What Mobo would you recommend?

    And if I did upgrade my CPU later would the CoolerMaster 212 still be sufficient?
  3. Ok, found a AM3+ Mobo. It is $10 more and I lose my combo deal, that's only a $25 total swing.

    So adding these:

    Mobo: $119.99
    ASUS M5A97 EVO AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131757

    CPU HS/Fan: $49.99
    COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1 120mm CPU Cooler
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103065

    ...brings the new total to: $606.82 - $35.00 (MIR) = $571.82

    Still under budget. Any other suggestions?
  4. The hyper 212 is a good midrange cooler .... but for $50 there are much better options . The Scythe Mugen probably the best choice
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185168

    Definitely build using an AM3+ motherboard .
    Watch the RAM voltage too . Stick to RAM that is rated at 1.5 volts

    As it is you could run that system on a 450 watt psu easily . But the higher wattage unit might make less noise since the fan wont spin up as high
  5. For the amazon hyper 212+ make sure to check the other sellers as the one that is actually sold by amazon is 29.51 with free shipping. I would skimp on the processor and get the phenom II x3 720 and a board with the 990fx chipset (oh wait, I did do this, I got the sabertooth and the x3 I'll be getting them on the 13th).

    Just get the cheapest DVD burner as it will work just as well: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106289

    I would buy two of these and have 8Gb 1600Mhz ram for $60: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231313&cm_re=g_skill_4gb-_-20-231-313-_-Product

    Be sure to set up a new newegg account using a different email address and you can save another 10 bucks using promo code newcustomer10

    I forgot to mention, the reason I only bought the x3 was because I didn't want to drop a bunch of money on a processor which I plan on replacing once bulldozer chips are released. The x3 has a pretty decent chance of being unlocked into a full phenom II x4 with its multiplier still unlocked since the x3 720 is a BE chip.
  6. 990FX isn't needed. 970 performs just fine, according to toms 990FX doesn't even have a huge improvement over 890FX so IMO not worth the extra $40+.
  7. Sure it is not needed but chances are it will be able to provide a higher more stable overclock. To stick to the OP's pricing range I would choose this board http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157262 for crossfire/sli support, even though you say you don't want it now, you might want it a month or a year from now.
  8. ^+1 to the suggestion for the board
  9. I really appreciate all the help so far.

    Ok, so now I am looking at these changes:

    Mobo: $104.99
    ASRock 970 EXTREME4 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157262

    PSU: $54.99
    Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371030

    RAM: $79.98
    G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9S-4GBRL
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231313

    Case: $99.98
    COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119197

    HS/Fan: $49.99
    Scythe SCMG-3000 120mm Heat Pipe CPU Cooler
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185168


    -------------------------------


    Kinda getting lost and over budget. I lost pretty much all my combo deals.

    Priorities
    1 - Value - I want the most pc for $600. I am all about value, I will spend a little more if I am getting more for my money.
    2 - Upgrade Ability - I don't want to be stuck with yesterday's technology.


    New set of questions:

    Mobo: Basically I want the best OC performance from a AM3+ mobo that I can get in the $100-$120 range.
    Does the ASRock board fit that bill?

    PSU: If I do change my mind one day and want to go with a Crossfire setup, will the 520W be enough?

    HS/Fan: Still in the air on this one...
    Will the CM 212 for $40 suit me fine?
    Would I be getting a better "value" with the Scythe for $50?
    Whats the best cooler under $60?
  10. tj223 said:
    I really appreciate all the help so far.

    Ok, so now I am looking at these changes:

    Mobo: $104.99
    ASRock 970 EXTREME4 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157262

    PSU: $54.99
    Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371030

    RAM: $79.98
    G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9S-4GBRL
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231313

    Case: $99.98
    COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel + Plastic and Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119197

    HS/Fan: $49.99
    Scythe SCMG-3000 120mm Heat Pipe CPU Cooler
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185168


    -------------------------------


    Kinda getting lost and over budget. I lost pretty much all my combo deals.

    Priorities
    1 - Value - I want the most pc for $600. I am all about value, I will spend a little more if I am getting more for my money.
    2 - Upgrade Ability - I don't want to be stuck with yesterday's technology.


    New set of questions:

    Mobo: Basically I want the best OC performance from a AM3+ mobo that I can get in the $100-$120 range.
    Does the ASRock board fit that bill?

    PSU: If I do change my mind one day and want to go with a Crossfire setup, will the 520W be enough?

    HS/Fan: Still in the air on this one...
    Will the CM 212 for $40 suit me fine?
    Would I be getting a better "value" with the Scythe for $50?
    Whats the best cooler under $60?

    MOBO- That is the newer version of Asrocks most recommended cf board with great features at a great price. I would def go with that one.

    PSU-If you are just cf'ing the 5670's then yes it will be plenty, but if you use more powerful cards it would be pushing it.

    The 212 for $30 is a great price. I would go with that one.
  11. Thanks zooted.

    I feel good about the mobo and psu.

    The 212 for $30 on amazon is out of stock. Says 1-3 months. It is in stock for $40.

    That's why I am asking if it is still the best value at $40 or is there another option out there in the $40-$60 range?
  12. I would say that it is still worth it, it cools on par with other coolers in the $50+ range.
  13. Ok thanks for the quick responses.

    I found a combo deal so I am about to recheck my budget. But it is looking pretty close.

    The new customer code that mlCaouette supplied might just tip the scale back under $600.

    About to total it up again.
  14. After some crafty combo deals and adding the $10 discount, here is my new total:

    $618.69 - $15.00 MIR = $603.69

    I am very satisfied with this build.

    I upgraded the mobo to the AM3+ and have CF support, went from 4gb -> 8gb ram, got a decent HS/Fan, and had room to splurge on the HAF 922 Case.

    All that and only $4.00 over budget. Not bad.

    Any other suggestions or issues I am overlooking?
  15. sounds good happy building ^
  16. - Build Update -

    Case:
    COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Computer Case
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16811119197

    Mainboard:
    ASRock 970 EXTREME4 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16813157262

    CPU:
    AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103808

    GPU:
    Visiontek 900310 Radeon HD 5670 Video Card - 1GB, GDDR5, PCI-Express 2.0 (x16), DVI, HDMI, VGA, DirectX 11
    https://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=621465

    Memory:
    2 x
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16820231313

    HDD:
    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152185

    DVD:
    LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16827106289

    PSU:
    Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371030


    TOTAL: $603.69
  17. GL, I really don't think you need 8GB of ram, but... If you think you do go for it.
  18. Well I may run Citrix and have multiple OS's going at the same time.
    I'd rather have it and not need it.

    Any other critiques?
  19. Then you should be going with a 6 core CPU. It'll benefit because most Virtualization programs run on each core. With that said the Thubans will allow for running 6 at once.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103851&cm_re=Thuban-_-19-103-851-_-Product
  20. How will the X6 compare to the 955 OC to say 3.6 in a Gaming situation, all else being equal?
  21. The 955 would probably be better in the gaming situation but it'd be hardly noticeable.
  22. Ok maybe I should have started this thread with this info, but here's the plan.

    I write a bunch of web apps in php and I have just started migrating to GAE because it is free and Python is incredibly easy. It just works.

    Anyways, my ideal setup would be to have a Linux file/web server running all the time, for testing. While also streaming video to my 360, but also be able to get decent gaming performance.

    But I can easily revive one of the 5 or 6 half dead machines I have lying around to be a dedicated server. 2 of them only need a psu. That would have to be way more cost efficient than dealing with making this the "ultimate" multitasker, right?

    Just focus on one area?

    So I pretty much just answered my own question.


    @ shinobi: If they are nearly equal and I am leaving myself room to upgrade to the Bulldozer CPU's later, does it make more sense to just save a little now and upgrade later.
  23. True it does.
  24. This HSF is not as good as the 212+ but it will provide similar performance: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233082&cm_re=gaia-_-35-233-082-_-Product

    Have you looked at this case yet it has USB 3.0 front panel connections and a black painted interior: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119240&Tpk=storm%20enforcer
  25. I actually found the 212+ for $35.42 and the HAF 922 for $99.99 w/ $10 MIR.

    Kinda stuck on the HAF cases.
  26. Hyper 212+ even cheaper from microcenter 33.98 with the shipping: http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0315397
  27. Hyper 212+ is like 2 years old. There are much better coolers for the price at the moment:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233082

    You should consider spending less on a case and more on the meat of your build like an Intel based system (actually you don't even need to spend more for a faster Intel based system).
  28. Thanks. I think that brings me to $603.33. I must have been a little off earlier.
  29. Ok, so as usual I am thinking of increasing my budget. Here's the update.

    I sold the 5670 to a client so it's gone. I am thinking of upgrading the build around the 6870. I also want room to CF a second 6870.


    -- BUILD --

    ** I have already purchased the HDD and RAM. **

    HDD: $54.99 - $5 CC = $49.99
    SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152185

    RAM: 2 x $39.99 - $20 CC = $59.98
    2 x
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231313


    ** I am 99.9% sure on the HAF 922 and 955 BE. **

    CASE: $99.99
    COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119197

    CPU: $119.99 - $10 CC = $109.99
    AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103808


    Mainboard: $104.99
    ASRock 970 EXTREME4 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157262

    GPU: $174.99
    SAPPHIRE 100314-3L Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102948

    PSU: $74.99
    COOLER MASTER GX Series RS650-ACAAE3-US 650W ATX12V v2.31 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817171052

    ** Considering this PSU because of a combo deal with the HAF 922. It makes this PSU only add $20 to total.
    Combo Deal $174.97 - $30 Combo = $144.97 - $25 MIR = $119.97
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.688420


    My questions go back to PSU and MoBo.

    1 - How much PSU do I need for this setup with CF 6870's?

    2 - Does this CF setup affect my MoBo choice?

    3- Is the Cooler Master a good PSU and is it enough for CF 6870's?


    Thoughts?
  30. Best answer
  31. Wow Shinobi, you are like a sniper...

    Well that settles my mobo, gpu, and psu problems.

    All that is left is the CPU cooler. I am still on the fence, I have read so much stuff about all the coolers, I am nearly sick of it.

    What would you do with a ~$50 budget for CPU HSF?
  32. The hyper 212 from micro center is a good deal.
  33. Just ordered the 212 from Microcenter. Thanks.
  34. Which PSU do you recommend at these prices:

    $89.99
    Antec EarthWatts EA750 750W Continuous Power Non-Modular
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371026

    $99.99 - $15.00 CC = $84.99
    LEPA B850-MA 850W ATX12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Modular
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817194093
  35. ^ LEPA
  36. I went with the lepa, and got it all ordered today.

    Total w/ shipping: $743.26

    I appreciate the help from everyone.

    I will update you when I get it built!
  37. Best answer selected by tj223.
  38. GL!
  39. -- FINAL BUILD --

    CASE: COOLER MASTER HAF 922 RC-922M-KKN1-GP Black Steel

    Mainboard: ASRock 970 EXTREME4 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

    CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core

    HS/F: COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus RR-B10-212P-G1

    RAM: 2 x

    GPU: SAPPHIRE 100314-3L Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP

    PSU: LEPA B850-MA 850W ATX12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC

    HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"

    DVD: ASUS 24X DVD Burner


    Monitor: ASUS VH226H Black 21.5" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen 16:9 Full HD 1080P

    Mouse: Logitech G500 Dual-mode Scroll Wheel USB Wired Laser 5700 dpi Gaming Mouse

    Keyboard: Logitech G110 Black USB Wired LED Backlighting Gaming Keyboard

    Headset: Logitech G35 USB 2.0 7.1 Surround Sound


    -------


    -- UPDATE --


    Absolutely love this system! It runs like a champ.


    Dragon Age: Origins locks the framerate at 60 max settings.
    DiRT3 runs at ~45 fps max settings.
    I am getting about 47~50 fps playing Witcher 2 @ 1900 x 1080 on Ultra Settings (without Uber-Sampling enabled).
    (All of those framerates are with stock CPU speed.)


    And it is cool as a cucumber.

    Actually I freaked out because I really focused on cooling (HAF case, 212+, and I added the 200mm side fan),
    and I boot it up for the first time and the BIOS says it is idling at 43C...

    So I bought some antec formula 7 and remounted the 212+ and added an additional 120mm fan on bottom.
    That dropped it to only 40C...

    So I adjust every BIOS setting I can to run all fans at max speed and dropped the ambient room temp 10F and then

    it was 39C...

    Then I started Googling.
    I found out that BIOS temps are not reliable and ASRock has had trouble with CPU temps in the past.

    Either way I got Windows 7 installed and Coretemp and Speedfan say 29C idling at stock speed, and 32C at 3.8ghz.
    ( I have seen as low as 27C, when room temp is lower @ stock speed.)

    After running Prime95 the max temp @ 3.8 is 45C
    That is the hottest I have it seen doing anything.


    -------


    I've had a strange issue with the motherboard but I started another thread about it. Here.
    (Small issue, no real complaints about anything.)

    And I have a few questions about OCing Voltage. Here.


    Anyways thanks for all the help, I couldn't be happier!
Ask a new question

Read More

New Build Systems Product