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~$1000 AMD Gaming Build

I haven't built a computer in I would consider myself a noob even though my job entails that I work on computers for a living.
Trying to build a(n) (energy/cost-)efficient gaming rig preferably within $1000. Instead of going for the high-end parts this time around, I would like to build a rig that is the most "bang for its buck" and I am willing to upgrade/downgrade per suggestion. Also first time since Athlon II that I'm straying away from Intel so your input please :o
Approximate Purchase Date: Within this month

Budget Range: Approximately $1000; could go beyond that but trying to build one that is cost-efficient as well

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Home theater, Video/Audio recording/editing, typical usage.

Parts Not Required: Will need pretty much everything; can skimp out on OS and just stick with Ubuntu

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: or a cheaper (reliable) site that's available

Country of Origin: US
Parts Preferences: Here are a couple of parts I looked at, all tentative and subject to change
Processor: AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition Thuban 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Six-Core Desktop Processor HDT90ZFBGRBOX\\Willing to swap out for X4 if needed

Motherboard: ASUS Crosshair IV Formula AM3 AMD 890FX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard \\Processor/Mobo Combo Deal: $351.98

Memory: CORSAIR XMS3 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model CMX16GX3M4A1333C9?\\ ~$87, there are cheaper alternatives :sweat: I just want a min. of 8gb

Hard Drive: Western Digital VelociRaptor WD6000HLHX 600GB 10000 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive?\\$289.99 Unsure about this one, will need a fast boot drive and a decent data drive

Graphics Card: 2x SAPPHIRE 100283-3L Radeon HD 5770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card\\$219.98 total, $109.99 each ($20 rebate available)

Sound Card: ASUS XONAR_DG 5.1 Channels PCI Interface Xonar DG Sound Card? \\~$22, not particularly sure which sound card to get

Power Supply Unit: CORSAIR Professional Series HX750 (CMPSU-750HX) 750W ATX12V 2.3 / EPS12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS SILVER Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply\\$142.99, After Rebate: $132.99; Not sure if I'll this much juice

Cooling: Noctua NH-D14 120mm & 140mm SSO CPU Cooler?\\~$86 Unsure what kind of cooling I'll need. Liquid cooling or Air-cooled?

Case: COOLER MASTER HAF 932 Advanced RC-932-KKN5-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Compucase Case with USB 3.0, Black Interior and Four Fans-1x 230mm front RED LED fan, 1x 140mm rear fan, 1x 230mm top fan, and 1x 230mm side fan?\\ ~$160, open to any suggestion. Haven't really used CoolerMaster Cases before.
Monitor: Samsung Syncmaster? Probably will need to have another look at the total price but I'm up for any suggestions. Anything around 22" or larger would be fine.

Mouse: Probably stick with a Logitech, don't like those Razers too much.

Keyboard: Standard keyboard.

Speakers: Still looking

Operating System: Don't really care as long as it's not Vista or OSX. Probably be running Win7 (if I can find my key) or Ubuntu.

UPS: Probably won't need one yet, APC if I do get one.
Overclocking: Most likely.

SLI or Crossfire: Yes

Monitor Resolution: ...Full HD? 1920x????

Additional Comments: Quiet as possible, Energy/Cost efficient
8 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about 1000 gaming build
  1. Above $800, I just don't see an AMD based build providing th ebest "bang for the buck"
  2. getting a motherboard with AMD 990 chipset will allow SLI AND Crossfire.
  3. Best answer
    I have a few thoughts;

    Processor: The x6 is not going to get you any more performance in games than a x4 at the same clock rate. This will change as time goes on, but not likely in the next 2-3 years. Games just do not take advantage of the hardware. Production work will, so if you are doing AV engineering then go ahead and keep it.

    RAM: Assuming you are not OCing then the RAM is fine, you just do not need 16GB for games. Actuially 4GB is still more than enough for most games, and 8 is a safe amount for the forseeable future. Again, if doing production work, then 16GB is apropriate.

    Mobo: I know next to nothing about AMD chipsets, so take this with a grain of salt. On the Intel side, you will get the same basic performance out of your processor no matter the chipset. However, the chipset adds to the boards featureset (SATA 3, USB 3, SLI/Xfire, etc.) I am sure you could find a cheaper mobo in that will suit your needs. Then again with mobos you get what you pay for.

    HDD: This is an area to splurge. For the system drive go with the largest SSD you can afford. It does not need to be a 'performance' SSD, just about any SATA3 SSD will rock your world! Then consider a RAID 1 for your Data/Large program drive, which would also hold a backup for your SSD. Your storage subsystem will always be the bottleneck of your system, and also the most likely part of the computer to fail (unless overclocking). So spending a little extra money here will unleash the potential of the rest of the computer.

    Sound Card: I am a bit of an audio snob myself, and I have not used a dedicated sound card in a long long time. Is there a difference? Sure, a little one. Is it worth the $20-150 to deal with broken drivers, and dealing with win7 which does not take advantage of most audio hardware? Not really. Besides, digital is digital; If you really want quality then go digital out on your computer to your receiver, and use your receiver to adjust the tone of the sound. It will be much cleaner, much easier to adjust, and will free up a card space.

    CPU cooler: Unless OCing, or wanting a silent system you do not NEED an aftermarket cooler. If you are going for silent then there are much cheaper options.

    Case: Love it ;)

    Lastly, as Jack said; for the $7-1000 range you can get quite a bit better performance from Intel with an i5/P67 combo. But that isnt to say you cant have a great system these days for under $700.
  4. Got a couple questions:

    1. Processor: Stick with X4 for budget, i5/P67 combo for performance in the ~$1000 range? I might have to restart from scratch :o
    AMD or Intel? That is the question...

    2. Memory: I want a minimum of 8gb, the RAM I posted above is a bit pricey but not too sure on the performance.

    3. Motherboard: I need to have SATA3, USB 3, and SLI/Crossfire compatibilty. Pat posted that a motherboard with AMD 990 chipset will allow both SLI AND Crossfire compatibility. I'm pretty sure I'll probably stick with Crossfire since it's cheaper.

    4. Hard Drive: Now I did look into SSD; however I still don't know whether it is worth the investment at this point... R/W is always something I look at as well as capacity. I've used SSD and Velociraptors, but never tried the Samsung SpinPoint which I've seen quite frequently on the forums. Is the Samsung SpinPoint a viable choice? Honestly don't want to spend $300-400 on a SSD with decent capacity.

    5. Sound Card: Like CaedenV mentioned, not really a point of focus; would like some suggestions if possible.

    6. Cooling: I will eventually get around to OC'ing, so most likely will need a cooler. Now whether to go with air-cooled or liquid-cooled is the question...

    7. Case: That is definitely the most I've spent on a case...! :cry:

    Any suggestions regarding the parts would be appreciated.
  5. Get a cooler and install when you put in your mobo - will be a pain to take it all apart after the fact. A small 60-129GB SSD for OS & some apps & a spinpoint - good combo. I've been using a 64GB intel for over 2 years - can't stand how long things take on a no SSD computer.
    You have to decide between AMD9x5 Black or an I5-2500k - is $1000 absolute?
    For a CPU that OCs to 4.5 fairly easily I would go i5.
  6. Resubmitting a new build with an Intel Processor instead :o

    Thanks for the help.
  7. Best answer selected by noobiam.
  8. This topic has been closed by Area51reopened
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