Building $850 gaming rig, please help :)

Purchase Date: Within a week

Budget: $850

System Usage: Gaming

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

Preferred Websites: TigerDirect, Microcenter (I live very close to both of these stores too)

Country of Origin: Chicago, USA

Overclocking: Yes

SLI/Crossfire: In the future

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1200

Parts Preference:
CPU: Intel Core i5 2500k


Additional Comments:
- I live by both a Microcenter store and TigerDirect store. Unfortunately sales tax in Chicago is 10.25% so that affects my budget.
- I would like a system that is quiet.
- I know that the new AMD processors are coming out soon, is it a good idea to wait or is this purchase still a pretty safe bet?

Thanks guys, really appreciate it!
23 answers Last reply
More about building gaming
  1. Also, I don't want an SSD yet.
  2. Luckily enough, I just put together a build this past week from Microcenter at your exact budget haha.

    XMS3 8GB DDR3-1600 (PC3-12800) CL9 Desktop Memory Kit (Two 4GB Memory Modules)
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0347306

    Core i5 2500K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor- 179.99
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0354589

    Barracuda 1TB 7,200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive ST310005N1A1AS-RK- 59.99
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0334293

    ZT-50303-10M GTX 560 Ti Overclocked 1024MB GDDR5 PCIe 2.0 x16 Video Card- 229.99
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0356003

    ZS Series 750 Watt ATX Power Supply - 89.99
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0367316

    22x DVD±RW Burner with Dual/Double Layer Support - SH-S223F - OEM- 17.99

    GA-Z68XP-UD3 LGA 1155 Z68 ATX Intel Motherboard - 154.99
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0366193

    And a choice between these cases.
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0339423
    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0365239

    Those two cases are just a copy and paste from my build. You could also go with an HAF 912 or any other case.
  3. Oh, and the i5 2500k is a safe bet. Should last you a number of years, especially if you do some heavy overclocking later =) That Mobo is also future friendly for Ivy Bridge.
  4. Avoid sales tax and shop Amazon

    http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Tower-Case-RC-912-KKN1/dp/B003ZM7YTA $49.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    Cooler Master HAF 912 Mid Tower ATX Case (RC-912-KKN1)

    http://www.amazon.com/OCZ-80PLUS-Bronze-Performance-Supply/dp/B005A2RJOI/ref=sr_1_4?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1316980203&sr=1-4 $99.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    OCZ ZS Series 750 Watt 80PLUS Bronze Performance ATX Power Supply - OCZ-ZS750W

    http://www.amazon.com/Gigabyte-Intel-DDR3-Motherboard-GA-Z68A-D3H-B3/dp/B00518M77U/ref=sr_1_2?m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1316980403&sr=1-2 $113.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    Gigabyte Intel Z68 ATX DDR3 2133 LGA 1155 Motherboard GA-Z68A-D3H-B3

    http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0354589 $179.99 (walk in only)
    Core i5 2500K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor

    http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Hyper-Sleeve-RR-B10-212P-G1/dp/B002G1YPH0/ref=pd_bxgy_e_img_c $27.06 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler, RR-B10-212P-G1

    http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Ballistix-Channel-240-Pin-BL2CP51264BA160A/dp/B004UQ1KK4/ref=pd_sim_sbs_e1 $49.72 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB Dual Channel Kit DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM BL2CP51264BA160A

    http://www.amazon.com/Asus-DVD%C2%B1RW-DVD-RAM-Internal-DRW-24B1ST/dp/B0033Z2BAQ/ref=pd_cp__3 $18.99 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
    Asus 24x DVD±RW Drive DVD-RAM/±R/±RW 24x 8x 16x (DVD) 48x 32x 48x (CD) Serial ATA Internal OEM DRW-24B1ST (Black)

    http://www.amazon.com/Seagate-Barracuda-7200-12-Internal-ST31000524AS/dp/B004IZN3YI/ref=sr_1_2?m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1316985722&sr=1-2 $54.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 1 TB 7200RPM SATA 6Gb/s with NCQ 32MB Cache 3.5 Inch Internal Bare Drive ST31000524AS

    http://www.amazon.com/MSI-PCI-Express-N560GTX-TWIN-FROZR/dp/B004JLNZXU/ref=pd_cp_e_1 $224.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    MSI GeForce GTX560 1 GB DDR5 2DVI/Mini HDMI PCI-Express Video Card N560GTX TI TWIN FROZR II OC

    Total: $822.71

    ***Cheaper alternatives down below.

    http://www.amazon.com/MSI-N560GTX-Frozr-II-OC/dp/B0050I1P38/ref=pd_cp_e_4 $179.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    MSI N560GTX Twin Frozr II/OC Video Card

    http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Ballistix-Channel-240-Pin-BL2CP25664BA160A/dp/B004TPI42I/ref=sr_1_104?m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1316980679&sr=1-104 $29.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
    Crucial Ballistix Sport 4 Dual Channel Kit DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM BL2CP25664BA160A

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-560-amp-edition-gtx-560-directcu-ii-top,2944.html <----- gtx 560 vs gtx 560ti
  5. Whats Ivy Bridge? And did you buy these parts in-store? i think im gonna have to pay tax which would put me over budget. Also, don't you need the Hyper 212 cooler for overclocking?
  6. zeus1356 said:
    Whats Ivy Bridge? And did you buy these parts in-store? i think im gonna have to pay tax which would put me over budget. Also, don't you need the Hyper 212 cooler for overclocking?

    You don't pay sales tax on anything shipped from Amazon outside the state of Illinois. Seeing how Amazon cut all it's ties with it's affiliates in Illinois, other than that 2500K I linked to Microcenter, that entire build I posted is tax free.
  7. Thanks Why_Me, looks like a great build. Any idea if this rig will run pretty quietly or is that too hard to tell at this point?
  8. zeus1356 said:
    Thanks Why_Me, looks like a great build. Any idea if this rig will run pretty quietly or is that too hard to tell at this point?

    The case in that build can hold a 200mm case fan...which sales for like $14 on amazon. The larger the fan, the slower the rpm which means less noise. Your going to want to add one of those fans eventually anyways so you have better cooling/airflow or it's going to be a hot box.
  9. Yep, Why_Me's build is looking good too. I only tried the Microcenter build because you said it was close and was one of your options, not to mention it would only go over budget by maybe $30 and you could easily cut that price down a bit. You'll just have to wait a few days to get all your parts from Amazon, and possibly deal with dead parts on arrival. But don't let that stop you! Make sure you get the CPU from Microcenter though!

    And yes, it should be rather quiet. Especially if you upgrade to a 200mm fan.
  10. Also, Ivy Bridge is intel's new CPUs coming out next year.
  11. I see a difference in mobo's:

    GA-Z68XP-UD3 LGA 1155 Z68 ATX Intel Motherboard

    VS

    Gigabyte Intel Z68 ATX DDR3 2133 LGA 1155 Motherboard GA-Z68A-D3H-B3

    Pardon my ignorance, but what is the difference between the two?
  12. I see that both of you recommend the 560GTX TI, yet the article on Tom's Hardware for that price range suggests the Radeon HD 6950 1 GB. Why go with the GeForce?
  13. zeus1356 said:
    I see that both of you recommend the 560GTX TI, yet the article on Tom's Hardware for that price range suggests the Radeon HD 6950 1 GB. Why go with the GeForce?

    That gtx 560ti is the over clocking king atm, and when that card is easily pushed to 900+mhz it surpasses that 6950.
  14. Does it come with a factory overclock or do I have to do that myself?
  15. zeus1356 said:
    Does it come with a factory overclock or do I have to do that myself?

    MSI has a free o/c proggy called "MSI Afterburner" and it's probably the best vid card o/c proggy out there. It takes you all of a few minutes to o/c that card.
  16. Ok thanks.

    Why_Me, another concern: is the mobo you recommended good for overclocking? I've heard that some people have had trouble using it to overclock.
  17. looks like overclocking is still a little challenging with this mobo. does anyone have other suggestions for a motherboard?
  18. zeus1356 said:
    looks like overclocking is still a little challenging with this mobo. does anyone have other suggestions for a motherboard?

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157271 $124.99
    ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
  19. that looks good, but i dont see it on amazon. id like to go through one website if possible to save costs.

    Also, is there another option for a power supply that is less than $100?
  20. Sorry one more thing, I see that some PSU have fans on the top and some have fans shooting out. Is one design better than the other? I'm going to buy the HAF 912 which looks like the "fan on top" design would work better.

    Lastly, do I need 750 watts for my rig? Or can I get away with 650 or 700?

    Thanks.
  21. zeus1356 said:
    Sorry one more thing, I see that some PSU have fans on the top and some have fans shooting out. Is one design better than the other? I'm going to buy the HAF 912 which looks like the "fan on top" design would work better.

    Lastly, do I need 750 watts for my rig? Or can I get away with 650 or 700?

    Thanks.

    If you want to add another one of those cards in the future in SLI then you want a 750w psu. Also you don't want to go cheap on your psu. Cheap psu's go fast, and when they go they have a tendency to take other components like your motherboard with it.
  22. order all the stuff today. also went to microcenter and bought the proc. thanks for all your help guys! I appreciate it very much.

    Hopefully the assembly goes smoothly and this baby is purring in no time.
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