$900 Gaming Rig Priced out - Suggestions before Buying??

Been an avid reader of these forums forever and finally decided to join in on all the fun!

Putting together this build to be a decent gaming machine, in addition to other less intense/routine uses. I've done a fair amount of research over the past few days, however I would love to have an expert opinion on what I'm considering.

Approximate Purchase Date: 1-2 Days

Budget Range: Around $900

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Solidworks, Notepad.

Parts Not Required: Monitor, Keyboard, Mouse, Printer

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: No fanboy, but do tend to prefer Intel/Nvidia

Overclocking: Maybe, hesitant

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe Future (if the build supports it), not a req.

Monitor Resolution: 1680x1050, upgrading to 1920x1080 or 1920x1200 in the next year or so

Additional Comments: Prefer a smallish mid-tower, have 2 TB on external storage so internal HD's are only necessary for running programs. Did build a computer 5-6 years ago successfully.

Current Rig Idea:

COOLER MASTER ELITE 335 RC-335-KKN1-GP Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
- $49.99
-Cheap case, ok cooling, decent looking

Intel Core i5-2500 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500
- $209.99
-Aware that its not the super-clocking 2500K, however I'm still a little cautious about the possible real cost/benefit of overclocking past 3.3GHz (in most applications as shown in the latest article on BF3 hardware on the main page)

GIGABYTE GA-P67X-UD3-B3 LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
- $109.99 ($154.99 -$25 Instant -$20 Mail in Rebate)

EVGA 01G-P3-1372-TR GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) Superclocked 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video ...
- $154.99 ($169.99 - $15 Mailin)
-Was on the edge of getting a 560 Ti, however the cheapest option would be 50$ more at $200 - would that be worth it? I'm trying to justify the cost cutting choice by the option to SLI the 460 later.

Western Digital Caviar Blue WD3200AAKX 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
- $84.99
-Decent HD to allow for a fair amount of program space internal to system since I do all the bulk storage in my two external TB drives.
-Planning on upgrading to an SSD boot drive as soon as prices become more reasonable in a year or so.

Antec EarthWatts Series EA-750 Green 750W ATX12V v2.3 SLI Certified CrossFire Certified 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active..
- $59.99 ($114.99 -$35 Instant -$20 Mailin)
-Future-Proofing for possible SLI

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-8GBRH
- $59.99
-Payed a few dollars more for the lower timings (7's) of this model rather than the standard 9's.

LITE-ON Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive Model iHDS118-04 - OEM
- $17.99
-Cheapest Option to allow for basic installation of software, since most stuff is online now.

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit - OEM
- $139.99
-Is professional really needed or would home premium work (at only $100)?

Current Total = $887.91 (with all discounts and Mail-ins Applied)

First of all - will all of this work together? Can I make any significant cost cuts anywhere without sacrificing too much performance? Overall suggestions?

5 answers Last reply
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  1. If you are thinking about Overclocking in the future.. you will need the i5 2500k.. also, i would try and find a bundle for my mobo and cpu.. it will save ya some $$
  2. Went through all the Newegg CPU combo's and really could only find ones with power supplies (effectively reducing my above Antec EA-750 at $60 to a 500W-650W at $35-$50.

    I guess that brings up the question how much power do I really need? The GTX 460 I currently have selected recommends a "450W supply" compared to the "500W supply" for the 560 Ti I was thinking about. I know those are minimums, but with SLI consideration where should I draw the line (if I should even get SLI at all)?

    Possible Combos (at an average saving of $20-$30 over the current 750W PS), by ascending price:
    COOLER MASTER eXtreme Power Plus RS500-PCARD3-US 500W ATX12V v2.3 Power Supply
    Thermaltake TR2 W0388RU 600W ATX 12V v2.2 Power Supply
    COUGAR RS-Series RS650 (CGR R-650) 650W ATX12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    CORSAIR Builder Series CX600 V2 600W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
  3. This drive is usually recommended not for size but for speed and noise.
    But I would recommend this drive because its newer and has higher platter density.

    You should definitely wait as long as possible when buying these or any other hdd. Wait for the hdd prices to recover. :/
  4. Absolutely about the prices, horrible with the flooding over there atm - Part of the reason I'm trying to go as cheap as I can at the moment until either prices recover or SSD's continue to fall. Your first hdd looks good, but its out of stock so I'll have to stick with my original choice.
  5. So yeah... This should satisfy you nicely at this budget.

    (Case) - NZXT Crafted Series Tempest 410 Elite [Price: $89.99]

    (Motherboard) - Asrock z68 Extreme3 Gen 3 [Price: $124.99]

    (CPU) - Intel Core i5-2500K [Price: $214.99]

    (Heat-Sink) - Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO [Price: $34.99]

    (Additional Fan) - Cooler Master R4 Blue LED Fan [Price: $7.84]

    (Video Card) - MSI N460GTX Hawk [Price: $159.99 ($129.99 After MIR)]

    (Memory) - Corsair Vengeance 8GB [Price: $49.99]

    (Hard Drive) - Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB [Price: $79.99]

    (Power Supply) - Antec EarthWatt EA-750W Green [Price: $79.99($59.99 After MIR)]

    (Optical Drive) - LITE-ON Black 18X DVD-ROM 48X CD-Rom/DVD-Rom [Price: $17.99]

    (OS) - Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 64-bit [Price: $139.99]

    Price Before MIR: $950.75
    Price After MIR: $900.75
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