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Best quad core processor for around $150 or less

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March 19, 2012 3:05:44 PM

Hi, I'm building a custom gaming computer on a pretty tight budget. So I'm looking for the bets quad core processor for around $150 or less. I am not going to overclock, but I might try to unlock a few cores if its a unlocked processor if it won't damage it. Also this is not going to be all for gaming, I'm going to be using it for picture and possibly video editing and converting, but I don't have any more money to spend above about $150 unless its a couple of bucks. Please understand that I don't have to have something to blow everything away either, but I want the most bang for my buck. Then in your opinion would I have to worry about bottleneck from the processor to much or would a $150 graphics card be matched pretty evenly or even be the bottleneck, not the processor, with a $150 processor? Finally what do you think of AMD A6 or A8s? Thanks for anything that you can tell me, I really appreciate it.

All I really need to know about is the processor, and if it could cause a bottleneck, I'm not so concerned about the graphics card right now. Thanks again. Also all I need is something better than a Athlon X2 220.
a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 3:10:04 PM

Hello tygasp;

I don't believe you'd want to use an A6 or A8 Llano unless you're on a super tight low budget build.

Are you doing a complete system build?
You can get some good advice over in the Systems > Homebuilt > New Build section of the forums.


If you fill out the form in *How To Ask For New Build Advice* you'll answer all the standard questions that help things get started.
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March 19, 2012 3:20:53 PM

Thanks WR2, I am doing a full build but I wanted to pick a processor first and I thought that this would be the place to ask about it.
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 3:22:48 PM

do u need every part? whats your total budget? are u investing heavily in a gpu?
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a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 3:28:28 PM

In the price range you mention: AMD Phenom II X4 960T & AMD FX-6100

I think most would agree - X4 960T is a better option.
But the 'whole system' approach is a good idea.
Figure out how much you want to spend. Then ask the guys to build a system that gives you the best bang for the buck.
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a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 3:29:36 PM

Hold the phone!

AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb - is back in stock.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

put that #1 on your list.
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 4:24:56 PM

WR2 said:
In the price range you mention: AMD Phenom II X4 960T & AMD FX-6100

I think most would agree - X4 960T is a better option.
But the 'whole system' approach is a good idea.
Figure out how much you want to spend. Then ask the guys to build a system that gives you the best bang for the buck.


+1
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a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 4:27:51 PM

Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition has been hard to find lately.
And I don't expect it will hang around too long @ NewEgg.
It's a great value.
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March 19, 2012 5:44:11 PM

I'm thinking about going with the Phenom II X4 of some kind, all though i would like to get the I5 I just don't have the money. Thanks for all your help.
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a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 5:49:00 PM

Are you still on a $400 budget, including OS?
I'm thinking a $150 budget for CPU on a $300 hardware budget isn't going to get you a balanced system.
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March 19, 2012 5:49:13 PM

Best answer selected by tygasp.
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 5:50:44 PM

have you considered skipping the os for awhile?
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March 19, 2012 5:58:57 PM

WR2 said:
Are you still on a $400 budget, including OS?
I'm thinking a $150 budget for CPU on a $300 hardware budget isn't going to get you a balanced system.

I understand where your coming from but what I was thinking is since I have a monitor, mouse, and speakers already I don't need that. Then I planned on getting a very cheap or used case, along with a used DVD drive, and possibly hard drive because I planned on using linux. Mostly because it gives me a extra $100 to work with and if the hard drive breaks then I didn't loss a $100 OS. Then finally I don't plan on getting a great graphics card to start, or all the ram I want because that gives me more money to work with. So I'll get a cheaper graphics card to start($20-30), and then later get a better one. So on a $400, buying a AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition, for $125, that leaves me $275, and I think that I can pull it off, and have a decent system after a little while. Do you think something like that would work?
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a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 6:03:03 PM

That certainly has a much better chance of getting you where I think you want to be.

Check around and see if you can find an AM3 system (dual core Athlon II for example) that has the MB/RAM/GPU/HDD/CD/Case/PSU from someone looking to earn some cash for an i5-250K system. That could get you a legal copy of Windows too.
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 6:03:18 PM

tygasp said:
I understand where your coming from but what I was thinking is since I have a monitor, mouse, and speakers already I don't need that. Then I planned on getting a very cheap or used case, along with a used DVD drive, and possibly hard drive because I planned on using linux. Mostly because it gives me a extra $100 to work with and if the hard drive breaks then I didn't loss a $100 OS. Then finally I don't plan on getting a great graphics card to start, or all the ram I want because that gives me more money to work with. So I'll get a cheaper graphics card to start($20-30), and then later get a better one. So on a $400, buying a AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition, for $125, that leaves me $275, and I think that I can pull it off, and have a decent system after a little while. Do you think something like that would work?


$400

OK tell us exactly what components you need.
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March 19, 2012 6:12:07 PM

I need everything but like WR2 said I could probably find a AM3 system with most of the stuff in it for pretty cheap, and just add in the stuff that I want and keep some of the components in the other system.
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 7:28:55 PM



SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner SATA Model SH-222BB/BEBE - OEM
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COOLER MASTER Elite 311 RC-311B-BWN1 Blue Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
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PNY XLR8 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model MD4096KD3-1600-X8
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AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX
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$124.99
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Thats the best i could do, for $400 meaning you would have to use the Mobos onboard GPU and also save for your OS.
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 7:34:26 PM

Or heres an alternative using the APU which has good reviews for low to mid range gaming and can be later crossfired with a HD 6670.



SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner SATA Model SH-222BB/BEBE - OEM
Item #: N82E16827151244
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
$16.99


COOLER MASTER Elite 311 RC-311B-BWN1 Blue Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811119246
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
-$5.00 Instant
$44.99
$39.99


Recertified: Western Digital AV RFHWD3200AVJS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal AV Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136811
Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$40.00 Instant
$99.99
$59.99


Antec EarthWatts EA-500D Green 500W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply
Item #: N82E16817371035
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$40.00 Instant
$10.00 Mail-in Rebate
$89.99
$49.99


PNY XLR8 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model MD4096KD3-1600-X8
Item #: N82E16820178265
Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy
$26.99



AMD A8-3870K Unlocked Llano 3.0GHz Socket FM1 100W Quad-Core Desktop APU (CPU + GPU) with DirectX 11 Graphic AMD Radeon HD ...
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ASUS F1A55-M/CSM FM1 AMD A55 (Hudson D2) USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
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-$15.00 Combo
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Newegg Promotional Gift Card - $15.00
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 7:38:28 PM

And heres an FX based system with a HD6670 gpu for a shade over $400,, i hope its given you something to think about.



COOLER MASTER Elite 311 RC-311B-BWN1 Blue Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811119246
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
-$5.00 Instant
$44.99
$39.99


Recertified: Western Digital AV RFHWD3200AVJS 320GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal AV Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136811
Return Policy: Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$40.00 Instant
$99.99
$59.99


SAPPHIRE 100326DDR3L Radeon HD 6670 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card
Item #: N82E16814102952
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-$5.00 Instant
$15.00 Mail-in Rebate Card
$74.99
$69.99
1

Sega Gift
Item #: N82E16800999288
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$49.99
$0.00


Antec EarthWatts EA-500D Green 500W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply
Item #: N82E16817371035
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$40.00 Instant
$10.00 Mail-in Rebate
$89.99
$49.99


PNY XLR8 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model MD4096KD3-1600-X8
Item #: N82E16820178265
Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy
$26.99



AMD FX-4100 Zambezi 3.6GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) Socket AM3+ 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor FD4100WMGUSBX
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ASUS M5A78L-M LX PLUS AM3+ AMD 760G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
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-$10.00 Combo
$169.98
$159.98
Subtotal: $423.92
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a c 203 à CPUs
March 19, 2012 9:22:34 PM

One more thing to watch out for - is a motherboard that won't support the 125W AMD CPU.
Some boards cut off support at 95W.
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March 19, 2012 10:37:15 PM

What of those three builds would have the best performance to start?
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a b à CPUs
March 19, 2012 11:09:07 PM

Wow refurbished drives ??? bad idea
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a b à CPUs
March 20, 2012 5:41:14 AM

Phenom II 965 build = Best Processor performance from start

FX4100 + HD6670 build = Best Gaming performance from start

AMD A8-3870K build = Best all round performance from start
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a b à CPUs
March 20, 2012 5:42:42 AM

spentshells said:
Wow refurbished drives ??? bad idea


Well if you want cheap you have to take risks.
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