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Building gaming computer, 700 budget, most parts selected already

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September 26, 2011 9:17:12 PM

I am not someone who just went and got the first parts I saw, I've researched countless hours on Processors, graphics cards etc, but i still need some guidance on the final selection of a few parts.

Motherboard

GIGABYTE GA-990XA-UD3 AM3+ AMD 990X SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard (140$)
(This is a good one to choose right, there isn't anything better for less is there?)

CPU

Bulldozer 8 core FX-8120 clocked at 3.1GHz and boosted to 4GHz 185$

RAM

Kingston KHX1600C9D3B1 4GB DDR3 RAM @ 1600 ($29) (going to get a second stick later for 8gb)

Video Card

Radeon 5850 (140$, 120 after rebate)

Hard Drive

Seagate Barracuda 1TB (Sata 6) ($55)

DVD Burner

Asus DRW-24B3ST/BLK/G/AS Internal 24x CD/DVD Drive ($25)
or
ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM 19$

Case

Not sure at all. I want something around 50$ that would look decent if I got green LED fans.

Power Supply

OCZ ModXStream Pro Power Supply 600-Watt ($60)
Unless you can suggest a better one for the price.


Is there any changes I need to make, any incompatibilities?

Also, if someone wouldn't mind explaining how front panel ports work on a case, do they connect to the internal IO ports in your motherboard?
September 26, 2011 10:16:01 PM

All those parts are compatible, however, if you are planning on purchasing soon I would recommend at least waiting a couple weeks (mid october). Thats when the bulldozer comes out and most of the prices of other components will drop. For ram, Its best to buy in pairs for dual channel mem. and its actually cheaper since u get 2 instead of one. That way when you get another set you will have 16g or 8g, depending on the size you want. Also, what are you using this pc for? Gaming? Home use?
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September 26, 2011 10:34:30 PM

Gaming, sony vegas, some photoshop, those kinds of things.

I do plan on buying a second Stick of ram, but i cant pass up the offer to get a single 4gb by a good brand name for less than 30 dollars.

I'd probably get the middle model 8 core bulldozer because i cant afford the high end one thats 220+ dollars. I love how it disables 4 cores and speeds up the other 4 to as fast as the 4 core I was going to buy.

For the motherboard, I heard Asus is easier to overclock, which is something i would be doing in the future, is gigabyte also easy? To be honest I was going to get a 90 dollar board but I wanted a sound card and bulldozer compatibility, is there anything cheaper that works as nice?
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September 26, 2011 10:57:42 PM

gigabyte motherboards are crap, thats why they are so cheap. they still run BIOS instead of UEFI (unless you dont care). Also, just fork out the extra few dollars to get an 8gb ram kit, at least then they are a matched pair and will work properly in dual channel mode. Ditch the crappy seagate drive for a WD or Samsung.
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September 27, 2011 2:41:18 AM

Seagate HDD is alright, considering your price for paying for it. Gigabyte boards are still reliable, its just that some users end up with a bad one sometimes(DOA). For bulldozer, its hard to see how much it would cost once online stores start putting in a price. Asus is easier to o.c. albeit that your are replacing the heatsink with a aftermarket one. I would reccommend the 212+ for its rep.
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September 27, 2011 2:50:43 AM

Try to get 8GB of DDR 1600@ CAS8 or DDR 1866 @CAS 9.. Either kit will make a big difference. Get a "Black Edition" Western Digital drive if you can.. They considerably outperform the others and have a 5 year warr. That's a great video card for that price.
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September 27, 2011 2:52:40 AM

BTW.. Gigabyte is the top motherboard brand available along with ASUS. I stand by hundreds of builds with them.
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September 27, 2011 4:01:33 AM

1) Gaming, for the most part, works best with two or three fast cores.
The phenom x6 cpu's have been a disappointing choice for gaming, so why expect a 8 core follow on to be much better?
At least wait for some benchmark comparisons. Lack of leaked bulldozer gaming benchmarks this close to release makes me a bit doubtful.

2) Ram is sold in kits for a reason.
Ram from the same vendor and part number can be made up of differing manufacturing components over time.
Some motherboards can be very sensitive to this.
Although, I think the problem has lessened with the newer Intel chipsets, but I don't know about bulldozer. Still,
it is safer to get what you need in one kit.
Photoshop thrives on ram, get all you can.

A motherboard may be picky on ram, and you need to get supported ram.
You want documented ram compatibility. If you should ever have a problem, you want supported ram.
Otherwise, you risk a finger pointing battle between the ram and motherboard support sites, claiming "not my problem".
One place to check is your motherboards web site.
Look for the ram QVL list. It lists all of the ram kits that have been tested with that particular motherboard.
Sometimes the QVL list is not updated after the motherboard is released.
For more current info, go to a ram vendor's web site and access their ram selection configurator.
Enter your motherboard, and you will get a list of compatible ram kits.
While today's motherboards are more tolerant of different ram, it makes sense to buy ram that is known to work and is supported.

3) you might find the Antec HCG 620w a better unit at $50/ar:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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September 27, 2011 6:21:03 AM

Just out of curiosity, where did you find the 5850 for $140? That is a good deal. They had one on newegg a couple of months back, but since has disappeared.
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