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Gaming build for <$500

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January 10, 2012 4:25:15 PM

I'm currently 14 years old so anything over $600 is out of my price range, and my parent's if I receive this as a gift. I would mostly playing games such as the new SWToR, TF2, ArmA II, BF3, Skyrim, and DiRT 3 because this GPU includes it for free. I would also be recording videos from a capture card and rendering them in HD. This would be my first desktop and first build. Also my current computer, Acer Aspire 7540, can run TF2 at high and that's what TF2 recommends actually.

Approximate Purchase Date: Probably this summer

Budget Range: < $600 for the computer

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, HD video recording and rendering

Parts Not Required: Monitor

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg

Country: US

Parts Preferences: None, but I lean towards AMD a lot

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Yes

Additional Comments: Bang for buck is extremely important as I don't have much more than $600, and I don't want my parents spending too much either, please include tax and shipping for 08035

Motherboard-$59.99
ASRock M3A770DE AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard

CPU-$68.99
AMD Athlon II X2 260 Regor 3.2GHz Socket AM3 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor

Graphics Card-$109.99
XFX HD-677X-ZNLC Radeon HD 6770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5

RAM-$29.99
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory

PSU-$44.99
Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W

HDD-$94.99 (Damn you Thailand floods!)
Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500413AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

DVDRW-$18.99
LG 22X Super-Multi DVD Burner

Case-$54.99
Rosewill CHALLENGER Black Gaming ATX Mid Tower

Wireless Adapter-$18.99
TP-LINK TL-WN722N Wireless Adapter High Gain IEEE 802.11b/g/n USB 2.0

Keyboard-$7.99
LITE-ON SK-1788/BS 2-Tone 104 Normal Keys PS/2 Wired Standard Keyboard

Mouse-$6.99
V7 M30P10-7N Black 3 Buttons 1 x Wheel USB Wired Optical 1000 dpi Mouse - OEM

Subtotal=$516.89 Subtotal after MIR=$496.89
Total including tax and shipping=$576.92 Total after MIR=$556.92

If you guys (and gals) could look over my list make sure everything's compatible and if there's anything that I can substitute for something cheaper or something better that won't take me over my price limit that'd be awesome! Also if you could include the tax and shipping that'd be more than appreciated because it's damn NJ 7% tax and the shipping fees that are limiting me to my build. My zip code is 08035

More about : gaming build 500

a b B Homebuilt system
January 10, 2012 5:58:10 PM

$513 so far.

For ram: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... which adds $6.

For the cpu: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
which adds $21

For a heatsink: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $13.49 extra.

Check craigslist for a windows 7 copy. They start at around $50; be sure to get a sealed dvd with coa. Saw a copy of windows 7 pro for this price today in my local.

New total: about $603.
January 10, 2012 6:18:39 PM

Your build is terrible for 600
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January 10, 2012 6:29:55 PM
January 10, 2012 6:35:37 PM

Gordon Freeman said:
Your build is terrible for 600

If you don't have anything productive to say other than it's terrible and don't give me a better build then just leave this topic please.
Also Jdamon it's a good build build, but it goes to $656.34 with shipping so I really couldn't afford it.
a b B Homebuilt system
January 10, 2012 6:38:49 PM

You should try and squeeze in a quad core CPU and a 6700-series GPU, it should be doable for $600. Heck, they have had 6850s on SBM for $500.
January 10, 2012 6:49:09 PM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $69.99
ASRock H61ICAFE LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $124.99
Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000 BX80623I32100

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $144.99 - $10MIR
HIS H685FN1GD Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $21.99
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL9S-4GBRL

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $58.99 - $20MIR
XFX ProSeries P1-450S-X2B9 450W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Core Edition V2 Full Wired Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $84.99
Seagate Barracuda ST500DM002 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $17.99
SAMSUNG CD/DVD Burner 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 24X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model SH-222AL/RSBS LightScribe Support

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $39.99
NZXT GAMMA Classic Series GAMA-001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $22.99
Logitech MK200 Black USB Wired Slim Mouse and Keyboard Combo

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $18.99
TP-LINK TL-WN722N Wireless Adapter High Gain IEEE 802.11b/g/n USB 2.0 Up to 150Mbps Wireless Data Rates Support 64/128 bit WEP, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK, Wireless MAC Filtering

Total: $605.90 - $30MIR = $575.90
January 10, 2012 6:49:21 PM

FinneousPJ said:
You should try and squeeze in a quad core CPU and a 6700-series GPU, it should be doable for $600. Heck, they have had 6850s on SBM for $500.

I'll see if I can, I know that with the new HD 7000s coming out that the 6000s and 5000s will lower in price. Also can someone tell me some Pros and Cons of the i3?
EDIT: A lot of these builds are great, but it's damn NJ 7% tax and shipping that's making some of these cost close to $700, if you can include the tax and shipping for the zip code 08035 in these builds!
January 10, 2012 7:12:32 PM

MrTehPenguin said:
Also can someone tell me some Pros and Cons of the i3?

Here are some charts...some are using the i3-2120, a touch better than the 2100
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/amd-fx-812...
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/amd-fusion...
and toms...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-overcloc...
which has the CPU Hierarchy Chart...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-overcloc...

Basically, less cores, but still an awesome CPU even compared to 4 cores AMD CPUs. Integrated graphics are worse but that has always been the case for Intel vs AMD.
January 10, 2012 7:19:12 PM

Delirious788 said:
Here are some charts...some are using the i3-2120, a touch better than the 2100
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/amd-fx-812...
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/amd-fusion...
and toms...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-overcloc...
which has the CPU Hierarchy Chart...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-overcloc...

Basically, less cores, but still an awesome CPU even compared to 4 cores AMD CPUs. Integrated graphics are worse but that has always been the case for Intel vs AMD.

Thanks, and I guess that's why it's $125 because of the integrated GPU? I'm still unsure because I need to take tax and shipping into effect because that's what's limiting me from a good build.
a b B Homebuilt system
January 10, 2012 8:07:31 PM

http://www.microcenter.com/at_the_stores/north_jersey.h.... Don't know how close you are to microcenter, but since you have to pay sales tax, checkout their combo deals. One guy got a 2500k combo for around $250 recently. If you show up, do some haggling. I would still order some parts from newegg. Their tennessee warehouse gets stuff to me by truck much faster now. Got a tv from them in less than 2 days recently. And don't forget newegg shellshocker specials, with up to $75 off. Nothing today, but maybe a builder's special will show up tomorrow.
January 10, 2012 8:08:09 PM

swapped out gpu and psu from my build

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $109.99 - $20MIR
XFX HD-677X-ZNLC Radeon HD 6770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $44.99
Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

Total: $556.90 - $20MIR = $536.90

is this good enough?
January 10, 2012 8:30:51 PM

drunkducki said:
swapped out gpu and psu from my build

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $109.99 - $20MIR
XFX HD-677X-ZNLC Radeon HD 6770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $44.99
Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

Total: $556.90 - $20MIR = $536.90

is this good enough?

Swapped my GPU and PSU for those 2 and I'm saving $0.07, but with your build it'll still be over $600 with shipping and tax sadly
January 10, 2012 8:56:58 PM

maybe change your title to a $500 build

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $89.99
AMD Phenom II X4 830 Deneb 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor HDX830WFK4DGM - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $59.99
ASUS M5A78L-M LX AM3+ AMD 760G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $109.99 - $20MIR + free Dirt3
XFX HD-677X-ZNLC Radeon HD 6770 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $21.99
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL9S-4GBRL

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $44.99
Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $84.99
Seagate Barracuda ST500DM002 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $17.99
SAMSUNG CD/DVD Burner 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 24X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model SH-222AL/RSBS LightScribe Support

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $39.99
NZXT GAMMA Classic Series GAMA-001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $22.99
Logitech MK200 Black USB Wired Slim Mouse and Keyboard Combo

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - $18.99
TP-LINK TL-WN722N Wireless Adapter High Gain IEEE 802.11b/g/n USB 2.0 Up to 150Mbps Wireless Data Rates Support 64/128 bit WEP, WPA-PSK/WPA2-PSK, Wireless MAC Filtering

Total: $511.90 - $20MIR + Free Dirt3
January 10, 2012 9:12:25 PM

Awesome, it comes out to a total of $569.35. Anything I could upgrade with the left over money?
January 10, 2012 9:38:41 PM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$469.99 Gateway DX4850-27EU2 (PT.GBL02.R17) Refurbished Desktop PC Intel Core i5 2300(2.80GHz) 6GB DDR3 1.5TB HDD Capacity Intel HD Graphics 2000 Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$54.99 $24.99 after mail-in rebate card XFX GT-240X-YAFA GeForce GT 240 512MB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card Free Call of Duty 4 game w/ purchase

Grand Total: $569.20 ($539.20 after rebate) (plus the wireless card you had picked out)

later on you can upgrade the power supply to something like this..
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Video card upgrade.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
and add some case fans.

The sapphire hd-6750 i wanted to add makes it go overbudget.
The hd-6750 is about the max you can run on the oem power supply, i doubt a 6770 will run.

January 10, 2012 10:27:44 PM

Now as I said, will that be able to run games such as SW:ToR;, Skyrim, BF3, Minecraft, World of Tanks? Also drunkducki in that build you forgot one crucial thing, a CPU fan and heatsink. Had to drop the $79.99 mobo so I could have a CPU that doesn't melt.
January 11, 2012 5:40:18 AM

Do you still need an OS? I noticed you implied that you don't have one in your Parts Not Required but don't have one listed in your original build.
January 11, 2012 7:52:31 AM

New build. Grand Total: $601.21 ($579.21 if your rebates come in)

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$18.99 ASUS 24X DVD Burner

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
TP-LINK TL-WN722N Wireless Adapter

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$13.99 DCT Factory KBJ-315U Black USB Wired Standard Keyboard
keyboard & mouse plus speaker bundle

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
PowerColor AX6870 1GBD5-2DH Radeon HD 6870 1GB $159.99 $139.99 after mail-in rebate
Free Dirt3 game coupon w/ purchase

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W $44.99
$24.99 after mail-in rebate card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?I...
$278.99 Athlon II X4 640/760G/500GB SuperCombo LE

If you get your $40 in rebates.. altec lancing sat/sub 2.1 speakers..
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Altec-Computer-Speakers-three...
Altec Lansing 2.1 Speaker System, BX1221 - Black
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$17.99 COOLER MASTER Hyper TX3 RR-910-HTX3-G1 "Heatpipe Direct Contact" 92mm CPU Cooler

The rebates come with a crummy credit card, so you have to spend it somewhere that can take the gift cards.

The power supply that comes with the combo is total garbage. But it should have a fan or maybe two fans inside.
Rob the fans and reuse them if you can. Before you take it apart, with the power cable off, hit the power button and reset a few times to drain the power supply capacitors as they can store power.

January 11, 2012 1:46:39 PM

your cpu comes with a cooler/heatsink. you dont need to buy another.
January 11, 2012 5:36:08 PM

drunkducki said:
your cpu comes with a cooler/heatsink. you dont need to buy another.

Not the one in your AMD build. Also n4s no can do, with tax and shipping it comes out to $622, and I'm not sure if I want to stick to a build for under $600 including tax and shipping or if I want to spend the extra $30 for a better build. Any suggestions?
January 12, 2012 9:48:18 AM

That is because the video card changed in price. But i saw there is a code u have to enter. (I think once you enter the code it's close to $600 again)

Or pick a different card to make budget.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
VisionTek 900486 Radeon HD 6850 Free Dirt3 game $139.99
Grand Total: $580.49

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$139.99 GIGABYTE GV-N460OC-1GI V3 GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) 1GB
Core Clock: 788MHz Grand Total: $581.13

January 12, 2012 10:04:39 AM

There is enough to get this instead of the cheaper wired keyboard/mouse combo.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$24.99 Free Shipping Logitech Wireless Combo MK260 920-002950 Black 8 Function Keys USB RF Wireless Standard Keyboard and Mouse

With either card above...Grand Total: $590.66

January 12, 2012 10:21:28 AM

That Ocz 600Watt in o1die's combo is a decent power supply it can run crossfire or sli where the corsair 430 i had picked out can only run a single card.

January 12, 2012 6:57:39 PM

So many builds, and I can't choose one! I'm not sure if I want to save an extra $40 for something a bit better, or just save $600. Also n4s with that code it comes out to $595, but I'm not sure if I want that card because in the reviews many of the people were getting blue screens with the Powercolor 6870. Also I'm thinking about either a GTX 460, or 6850. They're still good cards and by the summer, which is when I'll most likely purchase this, the prices should lower (at least on the 6850) because of the new GTX 6xx series and AMD 7xxx series cards.
January 12, 2012 10:25:24 PM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=P...

Search of all midrange gpus from nvidia and amd.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$119.99 Galaxy 60XGH6HS3HML GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) GC Version 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
Free Shipping

In the posts for the card some are saying it overclocks fairly well.

It's cool how the fan flips out for easy cleaning.

Grand Total: $573.97

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G.SKILL Value Series 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 $19.99
(matching memory stick so you have 8gb total and can run dual channel memory instead of only one memory stick that is included with the system package)
Grand Total: $595.36
January 12, 2012 10:39:51 PM

I didn't read the posts for the powercolor 6870 before. It seems like it's rma rate is a bit high.

Powercolor, his, xfx, are sort of budget brands.

I am not sure about galaxy, but the reviews for it look ok.


"They're still good cards and by the summer, which is when I'll most likely purchase this, the prices should lower (at least on the 6850) because of the new GTX 6xx series and AMD 7xxx series cards."

All the parts are going to change by summer. It's a waste of time trying to put the build together now. The A6-3650 Llano is the new replacement for the athlonIIx4. The athlonIIx4 kit is old stock clearance, it has a 3.1ghz clock, i doubt amd will make a better and cheaper quad core by summer.
Hdd's might go down in price by then, and a newer faster hd-7850 should be out for the same price as the former hd-6850.
January 12, 2012 11:00:10 PM

need4speeds said:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=P...

Search of all midrange gpus from nvidia and amd.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$119.99 Galaxy 60XGH6HS3HML GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) GC Version 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
Free Shipping

In the posts for the card some are saying it overclocks fairly well.

It's cool how the fan flips out for easy cleaning.

Grand Total: $573.97

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G.SKILL Value Series 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 $19.99
(matching memory stick so you have 8gb total and can run dual channel memory instead of only one memory stick that is included with the system package)
Grand Total: $595.36

I was checking out that GTX, it looks pretty damned sexy as well. Also I really do not have the money for Windows so should I temporarily pirate it, use the 120 day Windows 7 thing, or just use Linux?
a b B Homebuilt system
January 13, 2012 9:28:56 AM

For windows, check craigslist for someone who has an extra copy and negotiate a lower price. Ubuntu works on most boards, but the graphics are average; no directx 10 is available. I've also seen windows xp for as low as $20 on craigslist.
January 13, 2012 10:38:12 AM

Adding windows7 puts my last build $100 over budget.

The i5-2300 in my first build is a sandybridge quad core running at 2.8ghz. Even overclocked to 3.6ghz the athlonIIx4 is still slower than the stock clocked i5-2300.


If you need windows 7, my first build comes with gateway's oem windows. The drawback is that that oem version is tied to the motherboard so if you change the motherboard you also need a new retail version of windows7.

The gt240 will let you play games for now. You could get a hd-6550 instead, maybe it will sell easier used since the hd-6550 works with some Llano apus.

Maybe when the hd-7850 comes out it will be close in speed to the current hd-6950 so the hd-6950 will go on sale. That card and a new power supply, any case fans you can add, will make a i5-2300/hd-6950 system that is about 1/3 faster than the athlonIIx4/460 system.


January 13, 2012 10:49:57 AM

need4speeds said:
Adding windows7 puts my last build $100 over budget.

The i5-2300 in my first build is a sandybridge quad core running at 2.8ghz. Even overclocked to 3.6ghz the athlonIIx4 is still slower than the stock clocked i5-2300.


If you need windows 7, my first build comes with gateway's oem windows. The drawback is that that oem version is tied to the motherboard so if you change the motherboard you also need a new retail version of windows7.

The gt240 will let you play games for now. You could get a hd-6550 instead, maybe it will sell easier used since the hd-6550 works with some Llano apus.

Maybe when the hd-7850 comes out it will be close in speed to the current hd-6950 so the hd-6950 will go on sale. That card and a new power supply, any case fans you can add, will make a i5-2300/hd-6950 system that is about 1/3 faster than the athlonIIx4/460 system.

I guess I might consider it, or just do that 120 day Windows thing, because I can earn the money to buy W7 in 120 days.
January 18, 2012 3:55:50 PM

Any other suggestions?
!