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Best way to spend $500?

Last response: in Systems
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January 2, 2012 5:45:13 PM


Tom Crew,
I have about 2 solid years of gaming left with my current schedule. My wife and I will be trying for a little one about this time next year so i imagine my gaming time will be vastly reduced. With that said i am trying to see how far $500 will take me into 2012. Below is my current build along with what i will be using the computer for. Let me know your thoughts and thanks!

Purpose (Ranked in Order of Most important to least):
Diablo 3
World of Warcraft
Starcraft 2
Battlefield 3


Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822136073

Kingston HyperX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model KHX8500D2K2/4GR
Item #: N82E16820104038

SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S203N LightScribe Support - OEM
Item #: N82E16827151154

ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro Rev.2 92mm Fluid Dynamic CPU Cooler
Item #: N82E16835186134

GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813128359

SAPPHIRE 100270SR Radeon HD 4850 X2 2GB 512-bit (256-bit x 2) GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video ...
Item #: N82E16814102809

Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor BX80570E8500
Item #: N82E16819115036

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V v2.2 SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 ...
Item #: N82E16817139006

Antec Nine Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
Item #: N82E16811129021


Here is my idea of what i should spend the $500 on:
-Customer Choice Award Winner EVGA SuperClocked 01G-P3-1563-AR GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card -

AND

-Crucial M4 CT128M4SSD2 2.5" 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) -

Think that's a wise choice?

Keep in mind i primarily play multiplayer online with friends. I hate being the last guy to load every game and always holding my friends up (why i went with the SSD). Im also trying to decide if that graphics card is a big enough upgrade over the 4850x2.

Thanks in advance!

More about : spend 500

January 2, 2012 6:19:34 PM

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 3000 BX80623I52500K
$219.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS P8Z68-V LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
$169.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model 997002
$69.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
$99.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't know if you have 64bit Windows or not but to be able to use 8gb of ram you would need it. The total for this upgrade is $559.96 and that includes the OS if you need it. Maybe you can apply for a budget extension? The video card that you have is at the same level as the GTX 560Ti so in order to do a video uograde you would have to go with a GTX 580.
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January 2, 2012 6:45:40 PM

Where the hell did you find a 4850x2 LOL those things are almost the same power as a GTX 580 but they are loud and hot as Fukk.
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January 2, 2012 7:05:35 PM

The 4850 is still pretty good. If it is working ok still and doesn't have overheating troubles i would consider reusing it.

You should check out tri-fire in the gaming charts. Tri-fire does pretty good and tends to have less microstuddering troubles than two gpu's.

A 4850 is fairly easy to find used and should be under $60.

Actually tri-fire 4850's gives a 580 a run for its money, in a few games it might even beat a 580.


Yes i was thinking the i5-2500K, crossfire board, mem.

The cheaper A6-3670K or A8-3870K is a ok option too. They tend to clock to about 3.5ghz and match the former phenomII955@3.5ghz but run much cooler.

I upgraded from a x2-929-4400+@2.7ghz, 4870's crossfire to a A6-3650@3.5ghz.
Its about 3X faster.
A quad core really helps, faster load times, windows boots up much faster, everything seems faster.

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January 2, 2012 7:22:02 PM

Thanks for the replys thus far guys, I really appreciate it.

@intone - never thought about the i5. Good call there.

@heaspin_69 - got it 3 years ago when I built this rig (march 09)

I noticed no one mentioned the SSD. I got a buddy that swears it's one of the single best upgrades you can do to a computer (coming from an HDD ofc). Any thoughts?
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January 3, 2012 9:16:54 PM

So I've decided on the i5 and mobo just wondering if the SSD is worth it. And if so how does crucial stack up to the others. Seems like toms likes the samsung models
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January 3, 2012 9:18:47 PM

It is worth it, but I'd wait until your budget is higher.
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!