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First Build: Budget Gaming rig

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December 4, 2011 8:52:17 AM

EDIT: Updated current plan at bottom

Hello all. I very recently got into computers, so I've decided I wanted to build a new PC instead of buying a pre-built one in order to play Diablo 3/Phantasy Star Online 2/League of Legends. Chances are, I will find other games to play, so I would like that taken into consideration.

Approximate Purchase Date: Before D3 comes out is the main goal but sooner is better.

Budget Range: I'd like it to be around $500-$700 with the monitor

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming is really it.

Parts Not Required:

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: I am only really familiar with newegg, but I'm open to other places

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: No preference

Overclocking: Maybe. Still a little unclear as to how this works/if it's worth it.

SLI or Crossfire: No plans, but open to suggestions

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: This is what I came up with. Looking for suggestions to either cut costs or improve on what I have. I'm not set on an intel CPU/motherboard, it's just the one I ended up picking. SSD for the OS.



Final build:

CPU: Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($127.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: ASRock H61M/U3S3 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 6870 1GB Video Card ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT M59 - 001BK ATX Mid Tower Case ($54.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 520W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($57.98 @ Newegg)
Total: $485.42

Thanks for the help
December 4, 2011 9:15:39 AM

Who knows when Diablo 3 is releasing. I predict 2nd quarter 2012. By that time new GPUs and CPUs will be out so it is better to wait unless u have a game u "have to" play now.
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December 4, 2011 9:19:28 AM

Personally, I'm guessing mid-late Q1 for D3. Otherwise, the only must play game would be LoL, but it's not a huge deal.

Anything that you would recommend getting sooner rather than later due to price increases?
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Best solution

December 4, 2011 9:22:01 AM

Quote:
Motherboard:
ASRock Z68 PRO3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard


I reckon you should change the motherboard down to this to save money
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:
Memory:
ADATA XPG Gaming Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model AX3U1600GB2G9-2G


Try changing them to these to save money
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:
Case:
RAIDMAX SMILODON ATX-612WBP Black 1.0mm SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Foldout MB Computer Case With 500W Power Supply


Not so good with that psu with the case, I'm pretty sure it doesn't have a 8pin 12v connector. These would be good:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Now you can use the money to get a 6850

Also, dont get the SSD, you have a tiny budget so you won't be able to fit it in with a decent GPU.

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December 4, 2011 9:55:08 AM

buu11235 said:
Personally, I'm guessing mid-late Q1 for D3. Otherwise, the only must play game would be LoL, but it's not a huge deal.

Anything that you would recommend getting sooner rather than later due to price increases?


Everything goes down in price the longer u wait. HDD is the exception to the rule right now because there is a shortage and the prices are up. When the new processors and video cards come out the older gen will be much cheaper, and outdated.
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December 4, 2011 9:24:37 PM

zhongyan said:
Quote:
Motherboard:
ASRock Z68 PRO3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard


I reckon you should change the motherboard down to this to save money
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:
Memory:
ADATA XPG Gaming Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model AX3U1600GB2G9-2G


Try changing them to these to save money
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Quote:
Case:
RAIDMAX SMILODON ATX-612WBP Black 1.0mm SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Foldout MB Computer Case With 500W Power Supply


Not so good with that psu with the case, I'm pretty sure it doesn't have a 8pin 12v connector. These would be good:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Now you can use the money to get a 6850

Also, dont get the SSD, you have a tiny budget so you won't be able to fit it in with a decent GPU.


Thanks for the advice. I like your motherboard, case, and RAM suggestions.

For the power supply, if I get a 6850, the AMD home page suggests a 500W PSU. Based on the "Guide to Choosing Parts", I was thinking about this PSU.

Rosewill Green Series RG530-S12 530W Continuous @40°C, 80 PLUS Certified, Single 12V Rail, Active PFC "Compatible with Core ...

Thoughts?

One more question.
Would going for a 4870 crossfire be worth going for? 2 4870s are $40 cheaper than a 6850. Would making the switch be worth it?
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December 4, 2011 10:29:23 PM

buu11235 said:
Thanks for the advice. I like your motherboard, case, and RAM suggestions.

For the power supply, if I get a 6850, the AMD home page suggests a 500W PSU. Based on the "Guide to Choosing Parts", I was thinking about this PSU.

Rosewill Green Series RG530-S12 530W Continuous @40°C, 80 PLUS Certified, Single 12V Rail, Active PFC "Compatible with Core ...

Thoughts?

One more question.
Would going for a 4870 crossfire be worth going for? 2 4870s are $40 cheaper than a 6850. Would making the switch be worth it?
Stick to a single card for now because of this: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-stut...
There are a lot of headaches you have to sift through for dual card configurations--especially with Radeons.

For the PSU, it's the amperage on the +12V that matters, not the wattage. You'll want basically ~500W for a single card and 650W+ for dual cards. Stick to ONLY Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, or XFX until you know more about PSUs a bit later on. Other brands can be fine, but they are either much more expensive or you'll need an AMAZING review to back it up.

Overclocking: YES! It's definitely worth it. You can get much better performance for less money.
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December 4, 2011 10:56:16 PM

Instead of spending $160 for a lousy SSD and lousy HDD, just spend ~$150 for a great 120GB SSD.

At your price range though...it would really be to your advantage to use an old hard drive from an existing computer or to buy one off of a friend or a forum (Tom's Classifieds?). Then buy a large storage HDD after prices drop when the shortage ends in several months.

That monitor is too expensive (unless you already own it) considering how much it forces you to compromise other parts of the build. Instead, spend $120 and spend $50 elsewhere (like graphics).

You don't want a PSU included with your case because they almost never bundle good PSUs. What you want out of a case is:
1) Appearance
2) Decent Cooling
3) Enough Space for graphics cards
4) Front Panel USB 3.0
5) Big enough for expansions you may want.
So find the cheapest one that fits those needs for you.

Motherboard: Needs an Internal USB 3.0 header.

Mouse: If you're spending $20 and gaming is your focus, don't get only 1600dpi. Get something like a Death Adder or G500 when they go on sale for $35.

Don't spend $30 for 4GB of DDR3 1600CL9. You can spend $30 on Newegg and get 8GB @ 1600CL9.

EDIT: If I get some more time later, I'll come up with a specific part list.
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December 5, 2011 12:24:06 AM

If I were building at your budget right now, I'd definitely get the Phenom II x4 960T Zosma Black Edition: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It's a hexacore with two cores disabled. You've got a solid chance of unlocking it to an x6! And it's the same price as a quad core.

If you're not interested at all in overclocking, then the i3 is perfect for you.
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December 5, 2011 5:23:54 AM

Updated first post with current build options.


Since this computer will be pretty much a gaming exclusive, will there be a noticeable difference between the 925 and 960T?


Don't know much about overclocking so I'm not sure how to take that into account.



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December 5, 2011 10:57:21 PM

buu11235 said:
Updated first post with current build options.


Since this computer will be pretty much a gaming exclusive, will there be a noticeable difference between the 925 and 960T?


Don't know much about overclocking so I'm not sure how to take that into account.

You'll that in some newer games like Deus Ex: HR, that you really want to hit 3.4GHz+ for optimal performance: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/deus-ex-human-revol...
The 2.8GHz 925 is not enough cheaper to justify giving up the unlocked multiplier for EASY overclocking or the weaker stock performance that will prevent optimal framerates in some games.

You can see from the benchmarks here that you are giving up some gaming performance by going with Phenom II's over Sandy Bridge: http://www.anandtech.com/show/4083/the-sandy-bridge-rev...
But nearly all of that can be regained by overclocking and it'll smoke an i3-2100 in a lot of non-gaming applications.

It's tough to ignore overclocking at your price point. You could get an Phenom II x4 960T and GTX 560Ti, overclock both, and game with the same fps and settings as someone with an i7-2600 and GTX 570. Now the Phenom II x4 won't match an i7-2600 in non-gaming tasks--but we're not concerned with those.
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December 6, 2011 3:30:33 AM

Btw, you can pick up a 5870 on 1saleaday.com for $140. It might not arrive for 5 weeks or so though. It's the best bang for your buck you're going to find.
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December 6, 2011 9:11:13 PM

Btw, I'd probably go for a little more power on the PSU since you'll be OC'ing at some point. But the 430W should actually be plenty. If you'd like to consolidate your build into a single post with 1 selection per part below, that might be helpful to make things clearer.
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December 6, 2011 10:35:46 PM

dalauder said:
Btw, you can pick up a 5870 on 1saleaday.com for $140. It might not arrive for 5 weeks or so though. It's the best bang for your buck you're going to find.


I found got the 6850 for $130. Would the $10 difference be worth it?

And I'm still not sure about overclocking.

Here's where I'm at so far, with an i3 chip.

Part list permalink / Part price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Core i3-2100 3.1GHz Dual-Core Processor ($99.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock H61M/U3S3 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Patriot Gamer 2 Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($31.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Hitachi 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($53.99 @ Office Depot)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 6850 1GB Video Card ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Rosewill CHALLENGER ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 430W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $480.93
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated 2011-12-06 19:08 EST-0500)

If I do overclock, this is what I've got.
Part list permalink / Part price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 925 2.8GHz Quad-Core Processor ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ECS A880GM-M7 (V2.0) Micro ATX AM3 Motherboard ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($41.95 @ Amazon)
Hard Drive: Hitachi 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($53.99 @ Office Depot)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 6850 1GB Video Card ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Gamma Classic (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($35.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Antec 430W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $421.89
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated 2011-12-06 19:34 EST-0500)

How easy is it to overclock? Anything else I would need? I suppose a higher wattage PSU would be one thing.
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December 7, 2011 12:07:22 AM

Overclocking: It'll take you a weekend, or a few hours here and there during the week. We can walk you through the entire process in a forum thread. Here's one example: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/298353-28-bottlenecki...
I'm a big fan of it, as are most people on this forum, but you do not NEED to overclock.

I don't see how this partpicker thing helps...but okay...

CPU: The Phenom II x4 925 for $80 is a great price. That said, I'd still do the Phenom II x4 960T because it's the newer stepping (will overclock higher) and it's Black Edition, so it'll overclock independently of your fsb--making the whole process very easy (easier than my link above). I'd likely be able to OC a 960T to 4.0GHz in under an hour. The 960T deal ends tomorrow, so make a decision soon. The i3 is still a viable option. Although the H61 cuts off any possibility of an upgrade to overclocking a future Ivy Bridge CPU upgrade.

Mobo: I'd stick to Asus, ASRock, Gigabyte, or, if you have to, MSI.

RAM: Get on the Newegg.com email list. There's a $30 8GB (2x4GB) 1600CL9 kit every week. Buy any of those.

HDD: Buy that Hitachi right away! It's the best price you're gonna find nowadays. EDIT: N/m--it's OOS. Find a used SATA HDD on this forum (post in classifieds) or use your old one or a friend's.

Case: I like the Thermaltake V4 more mostly because it's not as tiny.

PSU: If you're pretty sure about a single graphics card setup, then just get a PSU that can handle a solid single card in case you get something like a 5870 on a great sale. I'd say get an Antec Neo Eco 620C when it goes on sale for $35 after rebate.

TOTAL: How much are you allowed to spend on parts? I'd prefer to spend a little more here or there for large performance bumps for a little money. I think a 6870 is worth the $20 upgrade from a 6850.

Personally, I think you should be more focused on ridiculously awesome deals at the prices you're looking at. For example, use Mr. Rebates and save 1% or more. Use eBillMe and save $10 ($20 on Tuesdays). Get a case when a $45 one has 25% off and a $15 rebate and ends up at $19--that kind of stuff to save $50 total that you put towards graphics.

Can you list what parts you have currently (including OEM) so we can figure out what can be reused for now and what can be used later? If you don't need to game with this machine until D3--you'd get a much better machine if you waited and built after the Radeon 7000 series launch. It will drop prices on all parts.

It's a tough call on what to do at your price range.
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December 7, 2011 3:10:45 AM

The only parts that I have are the CD drive and the old HDD from our old family computer (60 GB). I'm not sure if the HDD will work on newer stuff. I'll have to check the connection for it.

As for parts, I'm hoping to get a least a few parts from holiday gifts, but the rest will be from my pocket. I'd like to keep the money I spend on the computer around $600.

If I go with the 960T, would that work out alright if I don't overclock it?

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December 7, 2011 3:47:39 AM

I am biased to intel mostly if you want to upgrade you can put an i5 or i7 on the same board later. for your gpu as well as some of the other parts consider ebay. You can find good deals,
for instance I have this for sale that I got for partial pymt on a recent build I did.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/220908687376?ssPageName=STRK:ME...

The guy bought it and then decided to go with a bigger card. All I need out of it is the $130 to cover the rest of my build expense and compare it to this

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Asus-US-ENGTX550TIDCTOP-DI-1GD-...

They are not always good deals and you should check the prices for the new items on site like newegg or amazon before purchasing on ebay. Also keep an eye on the sellers rating score to be sure it is 100%.
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December 7, 2011 8:41:17 PM

rmiiirusty said:
I am biased to intel mostly if you want to upgrade you can put an i5 or i7 on the same board later.
While that is a valid point, I can't say he'll have a satisfying i5 or i7 experience on an H61 motherboard. If he wants the most bang for his buck at his current price range, I feel like future upgradability should be ignored.

However, OP, if you are committed to not overclocking, you should buy the i3-2100 an H61 mobo. An H61 will run the non overclock versions of Intel's i5's and i7's just fine.
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December 8, 2011 6:02:59 AM

I don't think I'll be overclocking on this build. Maybe on a future one when I get the basics of putting one together down.

Also thinking of going to an i3 2120.
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December 8, 2011 8:21:54 PM

buu11235 said:
I don't think I'll be overclocking on this build. Maybe on a future one when I get the basics of putting one together down.

Also thinking of going to an i3 2120.
Personally, I'd only get the 2120 if it's the exact same price. If you go i3, get the cheapest one you can because you'll be swapping it out and tossing it for an Ivy Bridge in two years.
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December 8, 2011 9:17:12 PM

dalauder said:
Case: $40 Antec 300 Illusion http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
To be clear--you will not find a case this good for this price unless you get outrageously lucky. You really should buy this case.

Also, I think Tiger Direct has 1.5TB drives for $70. They might be OOS.


Just noticed those deals myself, As of yet they don't show out of stock but I'm sure it won't be long. The hdd for 69.99 on tiger direct is a sata2 and a 5900 spindle speed but still a great buy none the less,especially considering the 1 1\2 tb size. sata3 wouldn't make much diff in gaming apps anyway.
The i3-2100 is the best for the buck in the i3 category as stated in an earlier post.
however also mentioned earlier in this post was the idea of putting in ivy br at a later date.

This might be an option but if I was going with a cheaper h series board now I wouldn't want to put a real nice processor in it later. My earlier post should have suggested that you save for this
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

and the i5-2500k, all total would be less than $200 more and you would be much more satisfied with your build. You would be able to o.c. without even knowing anything about it just by clicking your mouse with the easy overclocking software and your build would be able to satisfy you well past the release of ivy bridge and give the new technology time to work out the bugs and also time to maybe come down in price.
Just my advice, you can do what you want to.
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December 8, 2011 10:55:59 PM

rmiiirusty said:
Just noticed those deals myself, As of yet they don't show out of stock but I'm sure it won't be long. The hdd for 69.99 on tiger direct is a sata2 and a 5900 spindle speed but still a great buy none the less,especially considering the 1 1\2 tb size. sata3 wouldn't make much diff in gaming apps anyway.
The i3-2100 is the best for the buck in the i3 category as stated in an earlier post.
however also mentioned earlier in this post was the idea of putting in ivy br at a later date.

This might be an option but if I was going with a cheaper h series board now I wouldn't want to put a real nice processor in it later. My earlier post should have suggested that you save for this
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

and the i5-2500k, all total would be less than $200 more and you would be much more satisfied with your build. You would be able to o.c. without even knowing anything about it just by clicking your mouse with the easy overclocking software and your build would be able to satisfy you well past the release of ivy bridge and give the new technology time to work out the bugs and also time to maybe come down in price.
Just my advice, you can do what you want to.
Actually SATA II/SATA III makes no difference with HDD's regardless of gaming or any other application. However, the 5900rpm spindle speed will matter. But that's mostly irrelevant as this will end up being a data drive in a year's time when you catch a sale on an SSD, or pick up a smaller one for SSD caching.

That Republick of Gamers (ROG) Micro ATX Z68 is a BAD buy for someone on a budget. ROG board are overkill for most gamers (targeted at enthusiasts with deeper pockets). If he's never planning on overclocking, then the cheapest Z68 board will do--especially one with internal USB 3.0 headers because then there's nothing but overclockability that this ROG board provides. But if he's not planning on using Z68 features (Quicksync & SSD Caching) or overclocking, then an H67/61 will do. And in that case, I say pick up the cheapest Asus, ASRock, or Gigabyte H67/61 with enough PCI-e slots for the OP's taste.

i5-2500K? Seriously, this build is soley for gaming. If that's the case, that $80 is much better spent on a graphics card. You're talking about an i5-2500K on a $450 build--just to remind you what we're talking about. He wouldn't know the difference between an i3-2100 and i5-2500K most of the time anyways. I can barely tell the difference between an i7-2600K @ 4.0GHz and an Q9400 @ 3.2GHz and I know what to look for (I do appreciate it when it's there).

OP, once again, I'll say that I prefer overclocking. But you don't have to do it.
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December 8, 2011 11:12:05 PM

I'd go with this motherboard for $60: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Then you can throw out or sell the CPU & mobo when you want to upgrade. Both together only cost as the same as the ROG board suggested above, but you'll get pretty much the same fps while gaming. One thing--you'll need to manually set your 1600CL9 RAM to 1333CL7. Or you can just buy 1333CL7 RAM and it should do it automatically.
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December 8, 2011 11:26:42 PM

you are right as far as sticking with the budget. My suggestion was to save more before the purchase , as little as $200 bucks to have a much much much much..... better outcome. To me it makes no sense to make a purchase anticipating throwing it out later , but to each his own.
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December 8, 2011 11:37:48 PM

rmiiirusty said:
you are right as far as sticking with the budget. My suggestion was to save more before the purchase , as little as $200 bucks to have a much much much much..... better outcome. To me it makes no sense to make a purchase anticipating throwing it out later , but to each his own.
Yeah, but that's $200 that translates to 0fps. I'd get a $150 Gigabyte ATX Z68 & i5-2500K if I was building right now. But on a $450 budget, we're talking about adding 40% to the budget without addressing the focus of the build: Gaming.

I'm also assuming the OP won't throw it out, but give it to his Dad or something when he decides to upgrade.
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December 9, 2011 1:05:12 AM

dalauder said:
Actually SATA II/SATA III makes no difference with HDD's regardless of gaming or any other application. However, the 5900rpm spindle speed will matter. But that's mostly irrelevant as this will end up being a data drive in a year's time when you catch a sale on an SSD, or pick up a smaller one for SSD caching.

That Republick of Gamers (ROG) Micro ATX Z68 is a BAD buy for someone on a budget. ROG board are overkill for most gamers (targeted at enthusiasts with deeper pockets). If he's never planning on overclocking, then the cheapest Z68 board will do--especially one with internal USB 3.0 headers because then there's nothing but overclockability that this ROG board provides. But if he's not planning on using Z68 features (Quicksync & SSD Caching) or overclocking, then an H67/61 will do. And in that case, I say pick up the cheapest Asus, ASRock, or Gigabyte H67/61 with enough PCI-e slots for the OP's taste.

i5-2500K? Seriously, this build is soley for gaming. If that's the case, that $80 is much better spent on a graphics card. You're talking about an i5-2500K on a $450 build--just to remind you what we're talking about. He wouldn't know the difference between an i3-2100 and i5-2500K most of the time anyways. I can barely tell the difference between an i7-2600K @ 4.0GHz and an Q9400 @ 3.2GHz and I know what to look for (I do appreciate it when it's there).

OP, once again, I'll say that I prefer overclocking. But you don't have to do it.


As cool as SSD caching sounds, I don't think it'll make too big of an impact on gameplay. If I needed to turn this computer into more of a workstation+gaming rig, I'd consider going with an i5/i7 and a Z68 MoBo.

And based on a forum post on a D3 site, FPS scales with better CPUs, indicating it's more of a CPU driven game. He said he'd try to get more of a graph/table up this weekend with different CPUs and GPUs.

Thanks for everyone's help.
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December 9, 2011 1:38:36 AM

buu11235 said:
As cool as SSD caching sounds, I don't think it'll make too big of an impact on gameplay. If I needed to turn this computer into more of a workstation+gaming rig, I'd consider going with an i5/i7 and a Z68 MoBo.

And based on a forum post on a D3 site, FPS scales with better CPUs, indicating it's more of a CPU driven game. He said he'd try to get more of a graph/table up this weekend with different CPUs and GPUs.

Thanks for everyone's help.


Yeah, the reviews I read on this game also stated much better performance with quad core processors, hence the suggestion to save for a better foundation. Its not really that much diff, in price. or that much longer to wait for $200 is it?

The actual gaming wont change with ssd caching but loading times would be much better as the delauder suggested. that is all a matter of choice.
To clarify as to the value vs. price of the asus rog board I mentioned earlier, Asus ROG is the best of the best and worth extra , however, the board I linked is much cheaper than all of the other ROG boards yet seems to have all of the features of its more expensive big brothers big brothers It is amazingly the same price as asuses p8z68-v.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
I have built with both boards and the ROG board is much more satisfying and feature rich.
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December 9, 2011 1:45:22 AM

buu11235 said:
As cool as SSD caching sounds, I don't think it'll make too big of an impact on gameplay. If I needed to turn this computer into more of a workstation+gaming rig, I'd consider going with an i5/i7 and a Z68 MoBo.

And based on a forum post on a D3 site, FPS scales with better CPUs, indicating it's more of a CPU driven game. He said he'd try to get more of a graph/table up this weekend with different CPUs and GPUs.

Thanks for everyone's help.
SSD caching will have zero impact on gameplay, except for load times.

I dunno about D3, but it's not too hardware intensive, from what I've heard--not to say a 2.4GHz C2D as they suggest on System Requirements would yield you that great of results. It's not as hard as building a gaming rig for Crysis 2 or BF3 anyhow. But keep in mind that the i3-2100 is hyperthreaded.
rmiiirusty said:
...the board I linked is much cheaper than all of the other ROG boards yet seems to have all of the features of its more expensive big brothers big brothers It is amazingly the same price as asuses p8z68-v.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
I have built with both boards and the ROG board is much more satisfying and feature rich.
While ROG boards are great--I don't think it's going to be worth the sacrifice. What does it provide over a $120 Gigabyte mATX board if you are only into light overclocking? $100 for no fps increase over the $60 mobo? I think the OP's better off saving that $100 to invest into a better computer in two or three years when this one starts to struggle or a CPU/GPU upgrade at that point. And it'll still get better fps for the same amount of money.

ROG boards and Corsair $200 cases are for people who aren't on tight budgets. This guy is trying to build for $450--that means cut every corner you can and try to squeeze in decent graphics. Wow...I just looked at that ROG board again...it's pretty...
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December 10, 2011 1:41:31 AM

Alright, I think I'm pretty much settled on this build. Thanks for all the help.


CPU: Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($127.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: ASRock H61M/U3S3 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 6870 1GB Video Card ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT M59 - 001BK ATX Mid Tower Case ($54.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 520W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($57.98 @ Newegg)
Total: $485.42
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December 10, 2011 3:09:29 AM

Looks good but if you insist on going with an h board look here before you buy!

http://www.newegg.com/special/shellshocker.aspx?nm_mc=E...

That way you still get the i5 quad worth more in the end, the ram is less total ram but as the other poster suggested, it isn't needed anyway if it wont give more fps

add 200 for gpu and psu and then all you need is the case.
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December 11, 2011 8:47:29 PM

CPU: I'd have saved $10 and gone with the i3-2100...no big loss though

RAM: @$30, you should be able to get 1600CL9 RAM easily or 1333CL7. 1333CL9 is needlessly slow and not cheaper.

Case: I don't get why you're spending $55 on the case when you could find a $30 case and get a better graphics card (yeah, I'd find a way to work a GTX 560Ti or 6950 into this. But this will do.

PSU: I'd have definitely gone with the XFX 650W PSU for $59.99 instead of that.

To sum it up though--none of your parts are bad...I'd have just spent my money differently and gotten special deals instead of just decent prices when a budget's that small.

@rmiiiirusty--I missed that Shell Shocker, what was it?
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December 11, 2011 9:57:41 PM

dalauder said:
CPU: I'd have saved $10 and gone with the i3-2100...no big loss though

RAM: @$30, you should be able to get 1600CL9 RAM easily or 1333CL7. 1333CL9 is needlessly slow and not cheaper.

Case: I don't get why you're spending $55 on the case when you could find a $30 case and get a better graphics card (yeah, I'd find a way to work a GTX 560Ti or 6950 into this. But this will do.

PSU: I'd have definitely gone with the XFX 650W PSU for $59.99 instead of that.

To sum it up though--none of your parts are bad...I'd have just spent my money differently and gotten special deals instead of just decent prices when a budget's that small.

@rmiiiirusty--I missed that Shell Shocker, what was it?


D3 appears to play better with a better CPU, and since the i5's are out of my budget range, spending $10 more for a better CPU seems better.

For the case, I'm looking for something that looks cool, and something I'd be happy with for future builds. Right now it's between that case and the HAF 922.

For the PSU, it seems to get good reviews, and since i'm not planning on SLI/xfiring soon, I think it will be good.
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December 11, 2011 10:04:10 PM

dalauder said:
CPU: I'd have saved $10 and gone with the i3-2100...no big loss though

RAM: @$30, you should be able to get 1600CL9 RAM easily or 1333CL7. 1333CL9 is needlessly slow and not cheaper.

Case: I don't get why you're spending $55 on the case when you could find a $30 case and get a better graphics card (yeah, I'd find a way to work a GTX 560Ti or 6950 into this. But this will do.

PSU: I'd have definitely gone with the XFX 650W PSU for $59.99 instead of that.

To sum it up though--none of your parts are bad...I'd have just spent my money differently and gotten special deals instead of just decent prices when a budget's that small.

@rmiiiirusty--I missed that Shell Shocker, what was it?


Was a h series asus board, i5-2500 (not k) Adata 4g 1600 ram 1 stick, seagate 500g hd 7200rpm 32m cache, patriot 90g sata 3 ssd, and a small antec case all for I think, $349. Just a gpu and psu and he would have beenup and runnin, assuming he already has peripherals and o.s.

I personnally wouldn't have used the micro case which is why I had suggested a new case at the end.
It was a great deal even wo the case.could have added ram easily without having to scrap the origional
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December 11, 2011 10:16:07 PM

rmiiirusty said:
Was a h series asus board, i5-2500 (not k) Adata 4g 1600 ram 1 stick, seagate 500g hd 7200rpm 32m cache, patriot 90g sata 3 ssd, and a small antec case all for I think, $349. Just a gpu and psu and he would have beenup and runnin, assuming he already has peripherals and o.s.

I personnally wouldn't have used the micro case which is why I had suggested a new case at the end.
It was a great deal even wo the case.could have added ram easily without having to scrap the origional


Wow, that was a good combo. When I saw the link it was for a 620 GB HDD that was $30 off. Ended up getting that one since I bet that would be one of the better deals I'll find around now.
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December 11, 2011 10:18:24 PM

buu11235 said:
Wow, that was a good combo. When I saw the link it was for a 620 GB HDD that was $30 off. Ended up getting that one since I bet that would be one of the better deals I'll find around now.


Well good, at least the link was useful
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December 12, 2011 12:29:36 AM

rmiiirusty said:
Well good, at least the link was useful

Haha--OP, you got lucky with that HDD link.
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December 12, 2011 1:03:38 AM

I think I did.
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December 18, 2011 5:28:42 PM

Best answer selected by buu11235.
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December 19, 2011 1:43:30 AM

2463384,43,1048055 said:
Quick update.

Ended up getting an i5-2400 for my birthday, so that's in instead of the i3-2120. Everything else is the same.

Now i'm looking at wireless cards. Any opinions on this one?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...[/quote

Well, Happy Birthday!!
Looks like a good build so far.
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!