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1st Time Builder - $800 Gaming - Seeking Advice

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October 11, 2011 3:41:18 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: This week


Budget Range: 800-900


System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Surfing


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


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Microcenter/Newegg/Amazon


Country of Origin: USA


Parts Preferences: None


Overclocking: No


SLI or Crossfire: No


Monitor Resolution: 1680x1050


Additional Comments: None

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Trying to put together a budget gaming PC. Have come up with the below setup. I am using microcenter as main vendor as they are currently offering a very good in-store option for the i5-2500k. Given my budget, my graphics card is not as 'nice' as I would hope if I had more money. I am using i5 in hopes of future proofing a few of the components in hopes that they last a bit longer and I could potentially update the graphics in the future.

Any advice appreciated . Thanks

Gigabyte GA-Z68XP-UD3 LGA 1155 Z68 ATX

Core i5 2500K LGA 1155

Cooler Master HAF912 Mid Tower ATX

XFX HD685XZNBC AMD Radeon HD 6850

Kingston HyperX blu 4GB DDR3-1333 (PC3-10600) CL9 Dual Channel Desktop Memory Kit

Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO Universal CPU Cooler

Hitachi Deskstar 5K3000 1.5TB SATA 6Gb/s 3.5" Desktop Internal Hard Drive

Corsair Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 650 Watt ATX Power Supply

Total Price: (Including Tax/Before Rebates) $897.72
a b 4 Gaming
October 11, 2011 4:10:04 PM

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003ZM7YTA/ref=ox_sc_a... $59.99 & 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-Sup... $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.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $124.99
ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml... $179.99
Core i5 2500K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor

http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-Hyper-Sleeve-RR-B10... $25.96 & 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/gp/product/B004TPI42I/ref=ox_sc_a... $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.amazon.com/Seagate-Barracuda-7200-12-Interna... $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/Liteon-iHAS324-DVD-RW-Optical-Dri... $20.99 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Liteon iHAS324 24X DVD-RW SATA Optical Disk Drive

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0050I1P42/ref=ox_sc_a... $169.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
MSI N560GTX-M2D1GD5 Video Card

Total: $766.88 *not including shipping (motherboard)

http://www.amazon.com/Windows-Premium-64bit-System-Buil... $99.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64bit (Full) System Builder DVD 1 Pack

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=Z68%20Extre... <----- another look at that board

http://www.asrock.com/microsite/PCIe3/ <----- PCI-E 3.0
October 11, 2011 4:19:00 PM

Hey there...I think i have something a little better, especially since you are trying to get the best bang for your buck. check this out, as a gaming pc should be focused more on the gpu than the cpu.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total before MIR is $834.47 w/tax. If this is acceptable, this looks a bit heavier duty than what you have. Since you aren't running sli/cfx and are not going to OC, you dont need an aftermarket HSF. You will also get a free copy of Batman: Arkham City to test out your new rig! Also, you can get a really good Blue-Ray player with the extra money we saved. I would recommend this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Brings the total up to $938.36 w/tax before $40 in MIR, just under your $900 mark.

OR

You can upgrade that GTX570 to a GTX 580:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This is the ultimate setup for your budget, although it breaks the bank, after rebates, this hits the $938.34 mark, but offers the best build.

Hope all this helps, and i wish you the best in your building experience!
Related resources
a b 4 Gaming
October 11, 2011 4:45:47 PM

I'm more willing to use micro-atx to save money and space:

Lite-On 24x DVD burner: $18.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(free shipping makes it cheapest)

Rosewill R102 Micro-ATX case: $29.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
My favorite case -- I use it myself. It WILL hold the huge heat sink and 2 video cards!

Rosewill 120mm blue LED fan: $7.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
solid, not too loud, and looks amazing thru the dust filter in the front.

Seagate 7200 RPM 1 TB HDD: $54.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
a little smaller than the hitachi, but cheaper and better quality

PNY 560ti + Batman: $224.99 w/ $30 MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
its only 8.5" long, leaving you expansion room for more HDD in the case. a Zotac model that is identical is $5 more if you don't like PNY

Rosewill Green 630W 80+ cert PSU: $59.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It won a gold star from Hardware Secrets, and can handle a future SLI of 2 560s with 50 amps on the 12v rail.

GIGABYTE GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3 micro ATX motherboard: $114.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
its has 16x/8x crossfire/SLI capability in a micro ATX size

i5-2500K + 8 GB DDR3-1600: $248.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
straightforward with RAM & CPU, ready to overclock.

CoolerMaster Hyper 212 EVO: $36.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
latest version of the best inexpensive cooler around.

total $795.90 before $30 mir

October 11, 2011 5:11:56 PM

Hmm, first off, thanks all of you for the quick responses!

Tough decisions. Seems like if I did the in-store pickup for the i5, I could get ScrewySqrl's system for around 726, which to me is amazing given that it has
the i5 and a 560ti.

A good amount to think about and assuming none of the other builders chimes in to explain why one of the other builds is a bad idea I guess it will be personal preference.

Thanks again for the info, time to digest.
October 11, 2011 5:23:36 PM

only reason i think the i5 is a bad idea is the money it takes away from the gpu. if you are looking for a high end gaming system, especially for $800, i would recommend going with the Phenom IIx4 955BE and try to squeeze out a GTX580. It is easily OC'd and you can do some major damage. Even at stock speeds, you will be able to run any game at max settings, and you wont have to worry about an upgrade until 3-5 years from now unless you choose to do so earlier. an i5 costs much more than the 955, and quite frankly, for a gaming rig, you want the graphics card to be the high priced item, not the cpu.

Honestly, i dont see gpu's going down any time soon, at least not enough to wait. cpu's however, i see falling drastically, with the release of the new IVY and Bulldozers coming out. I think it would be more beneficial to get a higher end gpu now, and save up for a better processor later.
October 11, 2011 5:43:26 PM

You make a compelling argument, casualbuilder. I notice that the memory on your list is more expensive than the other suggestions. Is this due to using newegg only as the source? Also, with no DVD including in your initial list, getting an OS on it may be an issue.

I also noticed that Screwy didn't include RAM in the list so that is missing from that estimate.
a b 4 Gaming
October 11, 2011 5:52:00 PM

RickyJay said:
You make a compelling argument, casualbuilder. I notice that the memory on your list is more expensive than the other suggestions. Is this due to using newegg only as the source? Also, with no DVD including in your initial list, getting an OS on it may be an issue.

I also noticed that Screwy didn't include RAM in the list so that is missing from that estimate.



Ram is in my list as part of a combo with the CPU $248.98 for the combo, when teh CPU is $224.99, so $24.99 for 8 GB or RAM (normally $42)
a b 4 Gaming
October 11, 2011 5:55:09 PM

RickyJay said:
You make a compelling argument, casualbuilder. I notice that the memory on your list is more expensive than the other suggestions. Is this due to using newegg only as the source? Also, with no DVD including in your initial list, getting an OS on it may be an issue.

I also noticed that Screwy didn't include RAM in the list so that is missing from that estimate.

I screwed up and went by your choices instead of reading the format you filled out. :pt1cable: 

Seeing how you don't plan on o/c and running dual cards, a H67/H61 board paired up with a i5 2400 would be the way to go imo. I'l post a build shortly, but it should cut an easy $100 off of screwy's build...he was on the right track unlike myself, and it will put you into a 560ti or 6950 which will tear up games at your resolution.

Also do you save on tax buying from Amazon? If so, that will cut down the cost also.
October 11, 2011 6:00:01 PM

i made the same mistake screwy did, and looked at your build setup instead of what you didnt have did have. a cd-rom drive will cost you another $23. But definately google shop and price compare. all these prices are relative to the seller and offers they give at the time of purchase.

Best solution

a b 4 Gaming
October 11, 2011 6:20:42 PM
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http://www.amazon.com/Antec-Three-Hundred-External-Inte... $44.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Antec Three Hundred Gaming Case External 3 X 5.25; Internal 6 X 3.5 2*Usb2.0

http://www.amazon.com/Antec-Computer-Power-Supply-HCG-5... $71.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Antec Computer Power Supply HCG-520

http://www.amazon.com/ASRock-H67M-GE-B3-Intel-Motherboa... $89.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
ASRock H67M-GE B3 Intel H67 Micro ATX DDR3 1333 Motherboard

http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml... $149.99
Core i5 2400 LGA 1155 Boxed Processor

http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Ballistix-Channel-240-Pin... $30.03 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Crucial Ballistix Sport 4 Dual Channel Kit DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM BL2CP25664BA1339

http://www.amazon.com/Seagate-Barracuda-7200-12-Interna... $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/Liteon-iHAS324-DVD-RW-Optical-Dri... $20.99 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Liteon iHAS324 24X DVD-RW SATA Optical Disk Drive

http://www.amazon.com/EVGA-GeForce-Graphics-Mini-HDMI-S... $233.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
EVGA GeForce GTX 560 Ti FPB Graphics Card (1024 MB, GDDR5, PCI-E 2.0 16x, DVI-I x 2, Mini-HDMI, SLI-Capable)

Total: $696.96

http://www.amazon.com/Cooler-Master-RR-910-HTX3-G1-130-... $19.55 & eligible for FREE Super Saver Shipping on orders over $25
Cooler Master RR-910-HTX3-G1 130-Watt 92mm Hyper TX3 CPU Cooler for 775/1156/AMD/AM2/AM3

http://www.amazon.com/Windows-Premium-64bit-System-Buil... $99.99 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64bit (Full) System Builder DVD 1 Pack


http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?Model=H67M-GE <----- another look at that motherboard
October 18, 2011 12:07:46 PM

Best answer selected by RickyJay.
!