Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Looking for advice on building a new (budget) system

Last response: in Systems
Share
December 29, 2011 9:23:58 PM

Hello,

I am going to build a new pc, gaming-oriented, and I'm looking to build it on a budget. I'm going off this graphics card as a starting point:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It's very good for the price, and I was thinking of building the rest of the computer around it. I'm trying to figure out the cheapest motherboard/cpu/RAM/PSU configuration that will fully take advantage of the card. Any suggestions?
Related resources
December 29, 2011 11:49:03 PM

This is the most budget conscious system I can put together without going to amd cpu which I would not do personnally.
With no detail as to what you will do with your system I have considered a system that will suite most needs from browsing to gaming and even be capable of vid editing albeit not the best at it, but then what do you expect on a budget.

Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CPU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Case: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Ram: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Your gpu: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
O.S.: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Hdd: http://www.ebay.com/itm/WD-Caviar-Black-750GB-7200RPM-6...
Optic dr: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

All total around $800u.s. You could get a lesser processor and an h61 mobo if you want cheaper but with this one you will be able to have an overclockable cpu that is known for quality and you will be much happier with your system.
I picked this psu because chances are you will want to crossfire later and this will make sure you will have the power.
If you plan on oc'ing you will also need aftermarket cooling but you can wait for all that.

If I was going to go with a lesser processor, before I went to far I would consider this
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...
You would still need the gpu and O.S. making your total around $550u.s. but you could get a larger cpu later if you want. However with a setup like this, you could not crossfire your gpu's

Keep in mind that with the set up I put together above you will be set to upgrade if you want with more ram, larger processor(like i7-2600k), you can crossfire your gpu later if you need to etc.

Also the z68 chipset lets you take advantage of your on processor graphics to give your gpu a break between gaming.

In my opinion it is not worth spending the money for less of a system when all you would save is a hundred or two.

As far as taking advantage of the card you picked out, even an i3-2100 would do that, but just spend the extra $80 and get an i5-2500k. You'll be glad you did.

Also consider the card above, He is right about it being better.

AMD Radeon graphics tend to trump nvidea as far as better graphics until you reach the highest cards where I think nvidea pulls ahead. The catalyst software however leaves allot to be desired.
I have had problems with 5 out of 6 of the last AMD gpu's with catalyst, and to date with more than 30 nvidea installations have never had a problem.
a b B Homebuilt system
December 30, 2011 1:32:25 AM

I would not listen to rmiiirusty because it's not worth it. It would cost you $800 and yet the performance would be subpar to an AMD build that would cost $600...This is the build I would go with thats @ $600


CPU: AMD FX-4100 $120
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Graphics: SAPPHIRE 100314-3L Radeon HD 6870 $165
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MoBo: ASUS M5A97 AM3+ $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: CORSAIR Builder Series CX600 $70
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case: NZXT Gamma $40
http://www.amazon.com/GAMMA-Classic-Interior-Chassis-Bl...

HDD: HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: G.SKILL Value Series 8GB Desktop Memory Model F3-10600CL9D-8GBNT $35
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Heatsink+Fan: STOCK $0

DVD-ROM: SAMSUNG 22X DVD Burner $17
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total: $627

Explanation: This build will probably get some negative feedback from rmi but I would go with this. I would go with AMD for builds under $800 and with intel with builds over $800. I chose the FX-4100 because it is a 4 core AMD CPU that is pretty decent, performance wise. Many people say the benchmarking scores do not reflect the actual performance of the CPU and that the CPU does better than the benchmark results. I chose the Radeon 6870 because it is a great gfx card for that price and it is definitely worth it. It has outstanding performance at 1680x1050 and great performance at 1920x1080 too (I can run BF3 high settings with this card). In fact it'll perform great at 2560x1600 with some lowered detail. I chose that motherboard because it is CF capable, meaning in the future you'll be able to add another Radeon 6870 and make it work together for better FPS. The PSU is more than enough for CF and slight overclocking, and it is from a reputable company. The NZXT gamma case is amazing, it was designed for gaming so there will be room in the case for all the components. I have this case and it's extremely amazing. The G.Skill RAM is more than sufficient for any task and is also from a reputable company. If you want to OC the RAM, you can go with this RAM with heat spreaders:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
The DVD-RW is for windows installation and watching movies

December 30, 2011 3:19:26 AM

Roaring dragon is right as far as saving you a couple of hundred dollars.

He is also right about me criticising ,but not much. My only real disagreement is with the amd processor for the most part.

As you stated this is a budget build but you never mentioned a price you were shooting for. If it was me I wouldn't spend the 600 bucks for a foundation of amd when I could add a couple of hundred and have the best.

While we say we are building a pc and need to stick to a budget, we set a price and try to stay inside it.Well good, now what do we get for it.
I myself like the thought of knowing I got the best and that I am not limited in my choices of future upgrades.
i.e. If you spend (x amount of $) on a system with the best processor amd has to offer, then you are stuck there. At least with the i5-2500k, you have cpu upgrade options for the future such as a whole line of i7 processors,and who knows what amd will try to catch up with next.

But enough of the subject of cpu's

Roaring dragon is also right about the radeon graphics card above. You will profit most for your gaming build, the better gpu you can achieve.

I agree with most of his advice and the products he linked are good stuff, Heck, If you picked his psu, case, and ram, over what I linked youyou would save money and could still get the better gpu and the i5 processor for the price I originally posted.

All in all if you know you will want to trash this computer later to build another and only are concerned with the right now of it all, then back up to an amd and save a few bucks.
However, if you want a pc that will awe and amaze you and be ready for the future then stick with intel.
a b B Homebuilt system
December 30, 2011 3:54:32 AM

We really can't start saying anything, since he hasn't told us his budget range. I'm assuming under $500
December 30, 2011 4:21:50 AM

I'm actually going to go with the graphics card you wanted, the 6670, and start from there. If you want a BETTER graphics card, the intel systems already mentioned might be better.

CPU- AMD A8-3870K ($145)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Brand new unlocked CPU, untested as far as capabilities go. The A8 can boost the power of a 6670 using hybrid crossfire.

MOBO-ASUS F1A75-V PRO ($120)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Plenty of OC features in the BIOS.

Memory-Patriot Viper Xtreme 8GB ($48)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Llano benefits more from DDR3 1600

PSU - Antec Earthwatts 430W ($60)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case, DVD, and HD above are probably fine. ($140)

$573

Also the cost of the 6670, an OS, a heatsink if you want to OC, and whatever else you need.
December 30, 2011 3:58:26 PM

Thank you for your replies, these all look like excellent builds. Here's more specifically what I have in mind:

Approximate Purchase Date: one month
Budget Range: 500-700
System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming, surfing the web, music/movies
Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, dvd player
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, tigerdirect.com, microcenter (refurbished parts welcome)
Country: USA
Parts Preferences: mini/micro mobo and case if they can be used without sacrificing performance or increasing price compared to an equally good ATX build (haven't done the research to see if that's possible). Prefer video card to have DVI and HDMI, but must have HDMI.
Overclocking: Yes, but need to learn how
SLI or Crossfire: Yes

Comments: I'd only want one HDD, and need room for a bluray player and at least 1 open pci slot. I'm looking to use/game with this for at least 2 years, probably 4; I'm wondering what the best way to achieve that is, on a budget. As in, should I go for an advanced mobo now and get bargains on everything else, with future upgrading in mind?

Also, I have this old motherboard lying around:
http://www.ecs.com.tw/ECSWebSite/Product/Product_Detail...

I had originally thought of basing my build around this mobo, buying cpu, ram, and video card that meet the limits of its capability and scrounging for a free/cheap case, dvd, psu and HDD. I'd originally thought that this way, I could get a cheap, decent system now and build a good one later (when I have more $ to invest). I'm curious what the cheapest build to maximize this board would be, how good it would be, and would it be worth it to do so... I'm thinking it wouldn't be worth it to build this way, but I figured I'd ask.

I know it's a tall order, and I really appreciate the help!
December 30, 2011 5:11:45 PM

You could use that board if you want to and you could find some really good deals on a core 2 duo processor, like this one http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You can build a nice little gamer that will play most games out there. you wont have quite the speed of a sandy bridge system but you could play none the less.
You will notice however that your memory with this board is limited to 4g and it is ddr2 which is less speedy and getting harder to find and seems to cost just as much as ddr3.
If you plan to only use this computer for a year or so and rebuild sometime soon then this may well be a good route for you.
I would just make sure I spent the most money on the graphics card . one that you can take with you to your next build. I would also not skimp on the power supply, as you can transfer it as well to a new build later. I would suggest a good name like seasonic,antec,corsair,or silverstone,get at least 600watts and 80+ efficiency and for cable mgmt purposes get modular. You shoulld be able to find one around $80-$100.
A good hard drive can carry on to your next system as well and you should be able to find a good 1 tb card for under a hundred bucks, like this http://www.ebay.com/itm/Seagate-Barracuda-7200-11-1-5TB...
or this
http://www.ebay.com/itm/WD-Caviar-Black-750GB-7200RPM-6...

Going this route will definately keep you in your budget while giving you parts for your future build.
My only problem with my own advice here is that I'm not familiar with the ecs boards and I don't really know the condition of your particular board. I would hate to send you this route and have you end up wasting your effort on a board that isn't up to it.

On the other hand you can go with a inexpensive msi h series 1155 mobo and an i3-2100 processor and with all the rest can still maintain your budget, while building a pc that can handle up to 16g of ram and support a larger i5 or i7 processor in the future.
Even if you wanted to build later with a new board, This computer would have a higher resale value than the ecs, core 2 configuration.

Personally I would stick with an nvidea gpu for the fact that they are easier to work with what with all of amd's catalyst software issues. It is just easier for a new builder to work with, and a 550ti will play any game out there albeit not on ultra settings. you could snag one of those for a hundred bucks as well
http://www.ebay.com/itm/150728296865?ssPageName=STRK:ME...

Don't worry about the ncix canada links being out of the country. I have ordered from them more than once and each time my shipment arrived 3 days later. Quicker than amazon or newegg. If you pay through paypal you can return anything you don't like within a week no matter what the seller says and paypal will refund your purchase price. So your safe there as well.
December 31, 2011 11:45:37 PM

Yes, I think that's the best option; I'll get good parts that work on the old board and pass them on to the new system when I can afford to build it. Thanks for your help everyone, I really appreciate it!
December 31, 2011 11:58:35 PM

warng1286 said:
Yes, I think that's the best option; I'll get good parts that work on the old board and pass them on to the new system when I can afford to build it. Thanks for your help everyone, I really appreciate it!


Good luck and post results for your new build and any other questions that may arise.
a b B Homebuilt system
January 1, 2012 12:01:25 AM

warng1286 said:
Yes, I think that's the best option; I'll get good parts that work on the old board and pass them on to the new system when I can afford to build it. Thanks for your help everyone, I really appreciate it!

NO! I would not go with that Pentium CPU, if I were you, I would go clean and build a whole new system. Intel likes to switch its mobo/CPU so you probably can't upgrade better components for it without bottlenecking the system later on.
I would do this for now:

intel core i3 2100 $125
http://www.amazon.com/Intel-i3-2100-Processor-3-1GHz-LG...
and this motherboard:

ASRock Z68 Extreme3 $124
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

with this RAM:
PNY Optima 8GB $35
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

with these as other necessary components:

Graphics: GTX560Ti $210
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Antec NEO ECO 620C 620W $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case: Rosewill Challenger $50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Should bring your price to $685 with upgrade choices in the future (SLI the 560ti/upgrade to i5 2500k or i7 2600k or even i7 2700k/more RAM/etc)
January 1, 2012 12:21:07 AM

r0aringdrag0n said:
NO! I would not go with that Pentium CPU, if I were you, I would go clean and build a whole new system. Intel likes to switch its mobo/CPU so you probably can't upgrade better components for it without bottlenecking the system later on.
I would do this for now:

intel core i3 2100 $125
http://www.amazon.com/Intel-i3-2100-Processor-3-1GHz-LG...
and this motherboard:

ASRock Z68 Extreme3 $124
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

with this RAM:
PNY Optima 8GB $35
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

with these as other necessary components:

Graphics: GTX560Ti $210
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Antec NEO ECO 620C 620W $60
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case: Rosewill Challenger $50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Should bring your price to $685 with upgrade choices in the future (SLI the 560ti/upgrade to i5 2500k or i7 2600k or even i7 2700k/more RAM/etc)


That is a really good suggestion but the components we were talking about upgrading later were the mobo and psu, so the old wont need to be compatible in the future.
I would go with your idea myself because it will be more future proof.
All of the components you have listed are good quality and price,but I would pick an Asus board over Asrock for the fact that in the past two weeks, on these forums 2 of the 2 people who bought an aAsrock board that I have witnessed got bad boards.
Have no real problem with Asrock but have just been noticing a trend.
a b B Homebuilt system
January 1, 2012 12:57:45 AM

rmiiirusty said:
That is a really good suggestion but the components we were talking about upgrading later were the mobo and psu, so the old wont need to be compatible in the future.
I would go with your idea myself because it will be more future proof.
All of the components you have listed are good quality and price,but I would pick an Asus board over Asrock for the fact that in the past two weeks, on these forums 2 of the 2 people who bought an aAsrock board that I have witnessed got bad boards.
Have no real problem with Asrock but have just been noticing a trend.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ASRock
ASRock is funded by ASUS, (wikipedia's exact words: "invested by and subordinated by ASUS")...so ASRock is basically ASUS's lower end brand. ASRock to ASUS is like Toyota is to Lexus
January 1, 2012 1:09:01 AM

r0aringdrag0n said:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ASRock
ASRock is funded by ASUS, (wikipedia's exact words: "invested by and subordinated by ASUS")...so ASRock is basically ASUS's lower end brand. ASRock to ASUS is like Toyota is to Lexus



Well, who in their right mind, with simmilar pricing, would choose a toyota over a lexus?
If you can find the same or close price on the real deal why would you go with a lesser product?
a b B Homebuilt system
January 1, 2012 1:23:35 AM

rmiiirusty said:
Well, who in their right mind, with simmilar pricing, would choose a toyota over a lexus?
If you can find the same or close price on the real deal why would you go with a lesser product?

Because I can't find any suitable ASUS boards that are under $150...although this gigabyte board works @ $150:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
January 1, 2012 1:45:18 AM

r0aringdrag0n said:
Because I can't find any suitable ASUS boards that are under $150...although this gigabyte board works @ $150:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Heres one
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
and here
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
and here
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Those are just from newegg, I didn't look at any of my other suppliers links.
a b B Homebuilt system
January 1, 2012 2:24:52 AM

Ok, I meant I couldn't find any that had 2 PCIe x16 slots that supported SLI or CF...
January 1, 2012 4:19:19 AM

r0aringdrag0n said:
Ok, I meant I couldn't find any that had 2 PCIe x16 slots that supported SLI or CF...


Your right about the pci3.0 and ivy br. readiness.

Assuming there are no need for revisions on the earlier boards after the new techs release.

Right now there are only a few 3.0 specific gpu's on the market to test the performance of the slots on the board with.

Going to the asustek website and reading obout the boards I mentioned earlier, they do confirm crossfire capability.

This being the dawn of the new techs so to speak, I prefer to wait until the new stuff comes out ,all issues worked out (for sure) and a few more choices in products ,before I buy.

Not saying there will be any issues with the products ,just better to wait and see before investing in the first wave of products to hit the market.

Everyone I guess has their own way of looking at it I suppose, but as far as a new build now, I would go with the best for the price of what I knew was tested and good quality.

I wouldn't really personnally buy the i3-2100 if I was going as far as a z68 mobo, I would spend the extra $100 bucks for the i5-2500k and eliminate the need for a near future upgrade there.

I would again, buy the best graphics card I could afford that is a tried and tested performer.

There is nothing 3.0, or ivy bridge will have to offer that will really change my pc experience that much anyway,for now.

This build would last me a as much time as I need into the release of all the new tech ,and quite a variety of products designed for its use.

I could even wait until the best of the best comes out with the new tech and the prices on the recent released products begin to drop, before finally beginning to decide on a new build.

No offence , just how I look at the approach to a new build at this time.
a b B Homebuilt system
January 1, 2012 2:36:19 PM

They support SLI/CF but you'll need another item for it to work (another PCIe x16 connector) since the motherboard only has 1 PCIe x16 slot.
January 2, 2012 12:46:16 AM

Isn't it the norm to sli\cf with 1x16 and 1x8 slots?
a b B Homebuilt system
January 2, 2012 1:02:12 AM

that or 2 x8 slots. one x16 and one x4 might be slow on the x4 side
!