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$1500 Gaming PC

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Last response: in Systems
December 20, 2011 6:17:22 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: Mid January 2012
Budget Range: $1500
System Usage: Gaming
Parts Not Required: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, hard drives, optical drive, case, heat sink.
Preferred Website(s) for Parts:
Country: USA
Overclocking: Maybe
SLI or Crossfire: No
Monitor Resolution: 1920x1200
CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz
RAM: CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB)
PS:CORSAIR Professional Series HX850


More about : 1500 gaming

December 20, 2011 6:28:40 PM

Looks pretty good.

MEM - You MIGHT have issues with those memory modules being too tall. I would roll with the Corsair Vengeance modules below. They are low profile and have the same speed ratings...

CPU Cooler - Good choice. That cooler for $35 is a good buy.

PSU - The XFX PRO850W is on sale for $125 after MIR. Same quality and 80+ Silver rating as the Corsair...

Enjoy that rig!!
December 20, 2011 6:28:50 PM

You do realize that there is barely any difference from gaming on an i5 and i7. I'd get the i5 and save the $100 for better Case and Heatsink.
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December 20, 2011 6:48:47 PM

I was in a similar situation as you about 2 months ago when prices were 10% higher. Here is what i built for around $1350-$1400. I think it will prevent you from making common mistakes.

Asus P8p67 Pro
NZXT Phantom full tower
CM 212+ cooler
OCZ Vertex 3 Max iops 120gb
Intel I5 2500k (overclocked to 4.5ghz)
Sapphire Toxic 6950 2gb x2 (both unlocked to 6970 and clocked at 6970 speeds)
PSU- PC power cooling 950W
Ram- Gskill sniper 2x4gb=8gb @ 1600mhz. CL9

Here are some mistakes you are making. Never pay extra for some fancy motherboard. get something in the middle because it all performs the same.

Asrock p67 extreme 4 or Asus p67 Pro or EVo can be had for around $160. NO need for gen 3 its pointless

Processor- i5 2500k is plenty for gaming and once overclocked is not going to bottleneck

if you have a microcenter nearby you can get both for under $300. Even Frys has the motherboards for $145ish sometimes.

Cooler- CM 212+ gets you to issues...raise vcore of CPU to 1.35v -$25-$30

Ram- get the cheapest ram that is 2x4gb and runs at 1600mhz with 8 or 9 cas latency. $25-$30

GPU- Get 2x 6970s or 2x 570SLI- $600 total. You shouldn't make a $1500 PC that doesn't have dual graphic cards this powerful. If you are then you wasted money on the useless parts (probably motherboard, case or power supply as most people do). Also for GPU, you might be better off waiting for 7000 series. Its due in 1 month.

PSU- Spend no more than $100 newegg often does shellshockers on OCZ 850W PSU. It can easily handle your entire system overclocked. You can even get a 1000W for $100-$110. Main thing is to make sure the 12v rail has 70+amps for 850W and 80+Amps for 1000W. DO NOT pay for the 80+ stickers..they mean nothing. Manufacturers can cherry pick a good sample and get it rated to earn the sticker.

SSD- Getting nothing less than Vertex 3 Max iops 120gb or Patriot Wildfire 120gb. The speeds are insane. This whole z68 cache thing is pointless. You won't be satisfied and might spend extra money later. MIght as well get the good stuff early. You can find either of these for $190 easily on newegg and sometimes for $160ish. Frys has patriot wildfire for $160.

Case- This is a personal matter but anything above $110-$120 is money spent on looks and not functionality that affects gaming. The new cougar case, or CM 690 or NZXT phantom and many more will do just fine.

Sum it all up at the highest prices and you will be under $1500. I too made the mistake several yrs ago by getting an uber case, an uber motherboard, and cooler. I realized very quickly none of that added value to the gaming and I could have gotten a 2nd GPU if I got the mid range stuff in those categories because it adds no real value for gamers on a budget.

Hope this helps.
December 20, 2011 11:08:54 PM

Well switched down to 2500k and cm212 heat sink, as well as the low profile memory, thanks!

Will have to look at earlier Asus boards with P67 chip see how they compare to the Z68 i've chosen so far.

As far as SLI goes, I could do 560Ti sli, I suppose. 2 570s is a bit too much. Tbh I am using GTX460 atm with q6600 cpu at stock speed and all new games I try run just fine.

Not sure about SSD, while in theory it sounds great, I see they have quite a few bad reviews with systems freezing etc. ?
December 20, 2011 11:24:29 PM

Main plus I see for Z68 pro vs P67 pro is 2 PCI express 3.0 slots, kind of liked the extra on board video outputs on Z68 as well so I could connect all 3 monitors, though that's not important with 2 cards in SLI i guess.