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The Emperor's Dark Lord of the Sith Build..... Please?

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January 12, 2012 7:12:50 AM

Ello! I feel I've used the glorious "Search" button enough times across various forums of the interwebs to be entitled to add another thread to the endless sea of help me pl0x threads in the community. I've done some research across Tom's and Newegg, and though I know a bit, I don't know enough. I feel that in my position, this is a fairly significant investment and I should take the utmost care in my preparation. Thus, I am asking for some help here.

I'm fully capable of actually physically building the computer, but since I have not done so before I don't have anything laying around like a case or OS or random HDD or something. I do attend a university, and can get pretty good student discounts on interface and Windows and what not so that is outside the scope of this request.

The main thing I'm looking for is some FPS in SWTOR. Just about every game I've played I've done so on the lowest settings with all the features off, but that isn't cutting it for SWTOR and my laptop just broke beyond cheap repair a couple nights ago, so I would be getting a new computer anyways. I have a couple needy programs to run for school like MATLAB and SolidWorks w/ Advanced Features and stuff, but I'm not like a researcher or anything so I'm assuming if I can run SWTOR I can run scholarly software just fine. I'm also looking to make this computer an investment I can build on, maybe being able to upgrade just a CPU or GPU sometime in the future instead of having to buy a whole new computer just because I want to play Modern Warfare 5 or something. TL;DR, Gimme Dat FPS.

What I don't need is fancy things. I don't have a music library of any sort as I gave up the P2P Swashbuckling days of old and mostly enjoy music that I can stream somewhere for free, so storage space isn't a huge thing. I just need "enough" I guess. I also don't store a whole lot of video or anything, just a couple pictures. I also don't watch a whole lot of anything or do much with DvDs or anything. TL;DR, the cheapest optical drive available and a humble storage space (HDD or SATA, whichever) are good places to cut down on the cost.

I understand that I can't have everything, e.g. saving some money might sacrifice upgradability and of course saving money is going to sacrifice some performance. This leads me to a question I have considering SandyBridge-esqe combos. From the SBMs here on Tom's, it seems Sandy Bridge sets can hold their own. But of course, they are not so easily upgradable. A question then is this: Does using an APU limit the mobo to only using APUs, or can an APU be switched out at a later date for a CPU+GPU? If so, then AMD or Intel APUs seem to be a viable choice, but if not than it seems the upgradability is too greatly hindered. TL;DR, What about APUs?

TL;DR, The cheaper, faster, and more upgradable, the better.

I've sifted through what seems like 100 $500 builds, but I don't feel like there is any similarity between any of them, so I don't really feel confident in picking out any individual parts, and thus I have nothing picked out already. I fully welcome new builds, links to other solid builds, individual component suggestions, whatever. Help me out :) 



Approximate Purchase Date: the sooner the better, this week

Budget Range: 450-550 USD.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: SWTOR :) 

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, OS, Monitor, etc. Anything that doesn't go in the case basically. Plus OS.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Doesn't really matter, Newegg is nice, have a couple small gift cards to Amazon so that's fine too.

Country: Assembling in Pullman, WA, U.S. 99163

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Not really a preference, I feel like AMD is the more budget brand so I sort of lean towards that, though I have no qualms with Intel or really any other company in the computer industry. Except HP. HP is bad.

Overclocking: I don't plan on relying on overclocking for the performance.

SLI or Crossfire: Like the overclocking, I'm not planning on it but if for some reason it is most efficient then I'm in no way against it.



Thank you, thank you, thank you, to anyone that can help me out or attempts to. Appreciated, and +internets and LOLcats to you all. :kaola: 

More about : emperor dark lord sith build

January 12, 2012 7:46:04 AM

ChikaMeow said:
Ello! I feel I've used the glorious "Search" button enough times across various forums of the interwebs to be entitled to add another thread to the endless sea of help me pl0x threads in the community. I've done some research across Tom's and Newegg, and though I know a bit, I don't know enough. I feel that in my position, this is a fairly significant investment and I should take the utmost care in my preparation. Thus, I am asking for some help here.

I'm fully capable of actually physically building the computer, but since I have not done so before I don't have anything laying around like a case or OS or random HDD or something. I do attend a university, and can get pretty good student discounts on interface and Windows and what not so that is outside the scope of this request.

The main thing I'm looking for is some FPS in SWTOR. Just about every game I've played I've done so on the lowest settings with all the features off, but that isn't cutting it for SWTOR and my laptop just broke beyond cheap repair a couple nights ago, so I would be getting a new computer anyways. I have a couple needy programs to run for school like MATLAB and SolidWorks w/ Advanced Features and stuff, but I'm not like a researcher or anything so I'm assuming if I can run SWTOR I can run scholarly software just fine. I'm also looking to make this computer an investment I can build on, maybe being able to upgrade just a CPU or GPU sometime in the future instead of having to buy a whole new computer just because I want to play Modern Warfare 5 or something. TL;DR, Gimme Dat FPS.

What I don't need is fancy things. I don't have a music library of any sort as I gave up the P2P Swashbuckling days of old and mostly enjoy music that I can stream somewhere for free, so storage space isn't a huge thing. I just need "enough" I guess. I also don't store a whole lot of video or anything, just a couple pictures. I also don't watch a whole lot of anything or do much with DvDs or anything. TL;DR, the cheapest optical drive available and a humble storage space (HDD or SATA, whichever) are good places to cut down on the cost.

I understand that I can't have everything, e.g. saving some money might sacrifice upgradability and of course saving money is going to sacrifice some performance. This leads me to a question I have considering SandyBridge-esqe combos. From the SBMs here on Tom's, it seems Sandy Bridge sets can hold their own. But of course, they are not so easily upgradable. A question then is this: Does using an APU limit the mobo to only using APUs, or can an APU be switched out at a later date for a CPU+GPU? If so, then AMD or Intel APUs seem to be a viable choice, but if not than it seems the upgradability is too greatly hindered. TL;DR, What about APUs?

TL;DR, The cheaper, faster, and more upgradable, the better.

I've sifted through what seems like 100 $500 builds, but I don't feel like there is any similarity between any of them, so I don't really feel confident in picking out any individual parts, and thus I have nothing picked out already. I fully welcome new builds, links to other solid builds, individual component suggestions, whatever. Help me out :) 



Approximate Purchase Date: the sooner the better, this week

Budget Range: 450-550 USD.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: SWTOR :) 

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, OS, Monitor, etc. Anything that doesn't go in the case basically. Plus OS.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Doesn't really matter, Newegg is nice, have a couple small gift cards to Amazon so that's fine too.

Country: Assembling in Pullman, WA, U.S. 99163

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Not really a preference, I feel like AMD is the more budget brand so I sort of lean towards that, though I have no qualms with Intel or really any other company in the computer industry. Except HP. HP is bad.

Overclocking: I don't plan on relying on overclocking for the performance.

SLI or Crossfire: Like the overclocking, I'm not planning on it but if for some reason it is most efficient then I'm in no way against it.



Thank you, thank you, thank you, to anyone that can help me out or attempts to. Appreciated, and +internets and LOLcats to you all. :kaola: 


AMD's current APUs are not very upgradeable in the long term. The current CPU socket (FM1) will likely not be used for this year's APUs and beyond, so any upgrades to CPU would require a new motherboard as well. As far as graphics, they can be crossfired with mid level graphics cards giving a slight upgrade there, but anything higher than a 6670 would leave the integrated graphics turned off. Their integrated is good enough to play TOR, maybe even on medium, but not a great long term path.

Intel's integrated graphics arent even worth gaming on. Their new CPUs will be used for this year's CPUs as well, and go up to high end, so you have upgrade options there for the future..but the nicer motherboards are kind of pricy. Plus you'd definitely need a discrete GPU.
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Best solution

January 12, 2012 8:07:32 AM
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January 12, 2012 8:08:18 AM

Getting yourself onto a Z68 motherboard (Socket 1155) with an i3 processor and whatever graphics card you can fit into budget is going to give to best upgrade path and very competitive performance against what you could currently build with AMD.

Your looking at gaming, Integrated graphics aren't really an option here. Discrete GPU is required.

i3-2100 $125
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASRock Extreme3 Gen3 $121
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Mushkin 4GB (2x2GB RAM) $22
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Corsair 430w PSU $45 ($25 w/rebate)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Antec 300 Illusion Case $68 ($60 w/rebate)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
1TB SeaGate Barracuda 7200RPM (w/Free DVD/RW) $135
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


$488 without GPU

Sapphire 6670 1GB $80 ($65 w/rebate)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total Build: $553 (w/rebates) and your getting 1TB HDD in there as well which with current prices is good going!

Future upgrade options will include:
More RAM
Faster RAM (1600MHz+)
i5/i7 CPU IvyBridge or SandyBridge
Upgraded GPU (PCI 3.0 is an option with ASrock Motherboard listed)






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January 12, 2012 8:41:50 AM

Rosewill Challenger Mid Tower - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DVD Drive RW Drive Black ASUS - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Hitachi 500GB Sata 3gbps HDD - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Powercolour Radeon 6790 1GB GFX Card - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Corsair Builder Series 430W Bronze Cert PSU - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

8GB Cosair Vengance Black DDR3 1600mhz - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Gigabyte Z68 D3H Mobo - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Pentium G840 2.9Ghz Sandy bridge Dual core - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Grand Total with Rebates - $551.92

The Above build will give you ample performance in SWTOR for the price. SWTOR is not very CPU intensive (although this Pentium is a strong gaming CPU, stronger than all the equivilent priced athlons) , but is a RAM Hog (Hence the 8GB, I gained ~40fps by getting double RAM) and is very GPU intensive (Hence the dish out on GPU rather than CPU)

The Z68 Chipset also leaves an upgrade path to Ivy Bridge including all the K series, with their Overclockability fully intact.

The 6790 is a top quality card, runs rings around the similarly priced 550ti, and also destroys its Little Brothers the 6750/70 due to its 256bit Memory bus.

[EDIT] If your not bothered about the HDD being 500GB then knock it down to 160 or 250 and use the saved money to get an i3 2100.
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January 13, 2012 12:03:32 AM

Wow. What an awesome community! I appreciate all of your responses. I've finished with all my chores for the day, so I can really start looking at these builds. So far I've really researched over the first one, got it to $577.77 INCLUDING shipping, keyboard, mouse, and Windows 7 (after MIR). I seriously feel like I'm stealing or something with some of the deals I've ran into so far. I'm so excited to examine the other builds and am doing so right NOW!
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January 13, 2012 6:35:55 AM

You need to make the wishlist public :p 
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January 13, 2012 7:14:45 AM

Ah shoot, I made the first one public but when I edited my post the new one isn't! Two seconds.
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January 13, 2012 7:28:41 AM

Hurry! I'm going to a staff meeting in 20 mins
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January 13, 2012 7:36:55 AM

it's public :) 
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January 13, 2012 7:38:18 AM

Still asking me to log in -_-
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January 13, 2012 7:49:57 AM

Weird.
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January 13, 2012 7:50:42 AM

link a new post with the wishlist on it
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January 13, 2012 8:03:24 AM

List.

Ok, this *should* work. Apparently when you make a list public, it doesn't go public for like 24 hours unless you do a little trick with ID numbers.

Also, where do you live that you have a staff meeting at 2:00 PST?
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January 13, 2012 11:47:36 AM

SWTOR uses more RAM than other games, I reccomend 8GB. Otherwise a good system, but $100 over budget O.o

[EDIT] - Im from the UK so its only 13.48 GMT
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January 13, 2012 2:33:53 PM

I would have probably gone with an AMD APU system in my build, but not having an upgrade path killed it for me. :( 

Nice looking build by the way.
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January 13, 2012 5:52:18 PM

Ah I see. I visited the UK briefly once, I was a tourist but what I saw of it was amazing.

I might have to upgrade the RAM, but I'm finding mixed results in my research. A lot of people are saying 4gb is plenty and they run it fine. A lot of others are saying 8gb or die. I'm really excited for this, I spent at least 6 hours yesterday looking at everything.

As deadjon says, it appears to be 100 over budget on the wishlist link. That doesn't account for promo codes and MIR. After everything is discounted and taken away and shipping added, I'm looking at $558 which is only 8 over! Adding the 8gb will bumb it a bit, but not much.

I went with most of sosofm's parts because they're solid, upgradable, and almost every one has a promo code this week, additional mail in rebates, and free shipping. I'm pretty sure everyone recommended a Sandy Bridge CPU, and it seems most of the gaming/building community loves the i3/i5/i7 SB series. The G850 was an amazing suggestion, I was surprised at how close the gaming benchmarks (FPS tests) were to the i3-2100 for like $40 cheaper, and I was using it in a close-to-final build. I had added Windows 7 and a keyboard into my build because it had a promo code for $10 off and came with a mouse free, and the keyboard was cheap and had no shipping. When I discovered magically that being an engineering student (which I am) allows me to get Windows 7 Pro for FREE from my university, I was able to cut that out and upgrade from the g850 to the i3-2100. Went with the Z86 mobo for upgradability, and there is a promo code on it. I think I'll grab the 8gb ram instead of the 4 because it's so cheap and I'll be set for a long while with it. The 6850 seems to be the favorite card of many, and is also ridiculously discounted this week. The Destroyer is pretty, and with shipping and discounts, it turns out to be the cheapest of the suggested cases.

So many good suggestions.

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you! :pt1cable: 
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January 13, 2012 6:53:02 PM

-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
HIS HD 6850 144.99$ also a good brand although i like sapphire better, but HIS is also good you can save a few dollars with that

-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Kingston hyperX blu 4gb ram single 19.99$ same as the one you have both are 4gb just that you can dual channel with another one when you have the extra cash, for 8gb, and if you have more extra pocket and somewhat had the greed to go 12gb/16gb its also possible,

-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Thermaltake V3 Black Edition Mid Tower 43.99$
fits your mobo too

or

-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Cooler Master Elite 430 49.99$
fits your mobo too

and i advice you to just cheap out on the mouse and mother board you dont need any expensive on those, or if you do just buy a cheap one until you can earn enough for REAL Mice/Keyboard

-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
mouse 4.99$ rose will mouse,

for the keyboard you have it's good, you can just buy those cheap ones for now and get a better one next time, you can use those extra savings you get on by maybe getting an extra 4gb ram stick which i put above, for a total of instant 8gb, if not those saved dollars will help you stay on budget
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January 14, 2012 7:52:17 PM

Why not take the HDD out of the broken laptop and use that?
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January 14, 2012 10:48:41 PM

Best answer selected by ChikaMeow.
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