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Building 2 new budget gaming builds for my 2 kids any suggestions?

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February 4, 2012 6:53:26 PM

All of these parts I am buying 2 of since i'm making 2 machines other than the HDD.

These machines will both have 1 Radeon HD 5770's since I was running 2 in crossfire before upgrading my rig to a single 6970.

I'm using the monitors I already have for now and possible upgrading later.

I also am using existing HDDs I have for one and getting a small drive for the other since HDD prices are so horrible atm

After researching and pricing for about a week this is what I am thinking so far.

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Rosewill CHALLENGER Mid tower case.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$54.99

Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz w/1x LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04 - OEM Bundle
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
$127.98

MSI PH61A-P35 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel H61 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$74.99

COOLER MASTER eXtreme Power Plus RS500-PCARD3-US 500W ATX12V v2.3 Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$39.99 +$10 M.I.R.

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-8GBXH
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$48.99

Western Digital Caviar Blue WD3200AAJB 320GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache IDE Ultra ATA100 / ATA-6 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$79.99 (Till after the 6th)

Total : $426.93 w/ new HDD $346.94 without
$893.86 total including shipping

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Now does anyone have any suggestions or improvements to my parts?
I don't plan on overclocking so thats not an issue and a 5770 is still good enough to run most games at decent settings.
I will be running Windows 7 64-bit on both machines.

Is the stock cooler on the 2120 sufficient?
Am I missing anything?

More about : building budget gaming builds kids suggestions

February 4, 2012 8:08:49 PM

A almost good list of parts.

My thoughts:

1) The stock intel cooler is sufficient. Do take care to mount the cooler with the motherboard outside of the case so you can look at the back and verify that all 4 pins are through and locked.

2) Might as well get more basic ram, like this; same ram with no heat spreaders that you don't need:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

3) I have used a Asrock H61 m-atx motherboard similar to this for my son's build, and it worked well.
No need for the extra expense of a full atx format:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

4) A cm psu might be ok, but I don't consider it a quality brand.
I would look for Antec or corsair instead.
Here is a Corsair builder series 430W which I have used before:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Antec will have something similar.

5) Hard drive prices are crazy today. I don't think the msi motherboard you selected will have the capability to run the IDE hard drive you picked. Most current motherboards will support sata only. For that price, consider a small SSD, at least initially.
Intel and samsung are currently the most reliable. Intel has recently had two promotions for the intel 320 80gb drive for $80 after rebate,watch for that again.
Or look at the Samsung 830 64gb drive for $ 110. It will hold the os and a handful of games. Buy a hard drive for overflow when prices get back to normal.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
February 4, 2012 8:13:38 PM

Pick a Corsair, Antec, or Seasonic PSU. You can save some money by getting a different brand HDD. Stock cooler is fine. Rosewill Challenger is a bad case, you can get a Cooler Master Elite for a bit cheaper.
Related resources
February 4, 2012 8:25:47 PM

Slightly better deal on a case - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Better price on a processor if you happen to live near a Microcenter. Note the drop down location box at the top. Will be just as effective in gaming. Stock Intel Cooler will be fine. http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Better quality and priced motherboard - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Not as fancy but better priced ram that will work just as well - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

With the above savings I would invest in a better quality power supply. Coolermaster makes excellent cases and CPU coolers, but not power supplies. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Very good and cheap DVD drives - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
February 4, 2012 8:28:46 PM

somekidxd said:
Pick a Corsair, Antec, or Seasonic PSU. You can save some money by getting a different brand HDD. Stock cooler is fine. Rosewill Challenger is a bad case, you can get a Cooler Master Elite for a bit cheaper.


Cases are a personal thing. I find that most can be made to work. I don't mind going cheap on a case; never on a psu.

Here is an attractive alternative, the Antec 300 which includes a good 430w psu for $70 less $10 rebate and free shipping:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Since the 5770 only needs one 6 pin pcie power connector, 430w should be ok.
February 4, 2012 8:36:17 PM

Dunno about you guys, but our local recycling centre has people throwing out pc cases (some quality oem ones) because the pc is 'old'.

A quick clean will do, but you could also add a lick of paint and a couple of stencils
If you're for saving cash.

Currently have my system in a Fujitsu Scenic case pulled from the wreckage.

(For those that know of the case in question, I have 'modified' it to fit a proper psu)


ALSO!

The processor, if it's purely games (or even if it's not), step forward the 'Intel Pentium G840'

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

(here's a review http://www.anandtech.com/show/4524/the-sandy-bridge-pen...
from a reliable source, scroll down for games comparison)

Could save a few bucks there too. (Difference between the two processors are a few 0.1 Ghz and no threading, but it's tiny difference in games)
February 4, 2012 9:14:54 PM

geofelt said:
A almost good list of parts.

My thoughts:

1) The stock intel cooler is sufficient. Do take care to mount the cooler with the motherboard outside of the case so you can look at the back and verify that all 4 pins are through and locked.

The Case actually has a cutout on the MOBO tray used just for that purpose but generally I always install it before putting it in the case.

2) Might as well get more basic ram, like this; same ram with no heat spreaders that you don't need:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I spent a little extra on the ram just because I like the look of them so no worries there

3) I have used a Asrock H61 m-atx motherboard similar to this for my son's build, and it worked well.
No need for the extra expense of a full atx format:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I picked the MSI mainly because it has USB 3.0, Sata 2 and 3 as well as reg pci along with 1 16x pcie 2.0 and 2 1x pcie
for one of the lowest prices.

4) A cm psu might be ok, but I don't consider it a quality brand.
I would look for Antec or corsair instead.
Here is a Corsair builder series 430W which I have used before:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Antec will have something similar.

5) Hard drive prices are crazy today. I don't think the msi motherboard you selected will have the capability to run the IDE hard drive you picked. Most current motherboards will support sata only. For that price, consider a small SSD, at least initially.
Intel and samsung are currently the most reliable. Intel has recently had two promotions for the intel 320 80gb drive for $80 after rebate,watch for that again.
Or look at the Samsung 830 64gb drive for $ 110. It will hold the os and a handful of games. Buy a hard drive for overflow when prices get back to normal.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Oh shitty I didn't even realize it was an IDE HDD till I read your post thank goodness I didn't order it yet explains why it was cheapish lol.
February 4, 2012 9:28:23 PM

So your budget is $450 per computer?
February 4, 2012 9:50:16 PM

heyfunny said:
Oh shitty I didn't even realize it was an IDE HDD till I read your post thank goodness I didn't order it yet explains why it was cheapish lol.


If you don't have the os already, look at the windows 7 family pack. It gets you three licenses for about $135. It is an upgrade package, but no doubt you have a couple of previous windows versions lying around unused, so I think you qualify for upgrade.
February 4, 2012 10:34:05 PM

azeem40 said:
So your budget is $450 per computer?


More or less yeah,..

I wonder why people hate the Challenger case so much I watched a video review and I really like the design,... Plus it comes with 3 fans preinstalled all for only $54.99 or $49.99 for the USB 3.0 version.
February 5, 2012 12:27:20 AM

Ok After some suggestions and a bit more looking around I switched up a few parts

I'm still leaning toward the same Mobo since it has Sata 3 and 2 USB 2.0 & 3.0 + PCIe X16,X1,X1 and 2 Reg PCI all for $80!
And I like the Ram cause it looks cool AND its CL7

-----------------------------------------------------------------

NZXT M59 - 001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$49.99

Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz w/1x LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04 - OEM Bundle
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Comb [...] mbo.822341
$127.98

MSI PH61A-P35 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel H61 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813130609
$74.99

CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$44.99

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-8GBXH
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820231440
$48.99

HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
$84.99

Total : $441.91 w/ new HDD $356.92 without,...

$788.85 total including shipping.

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I didn't think I could find a case with a clear side panel and led lights for less than $75 - $100 so thats pretty cool
might add a few 120mm fans to the order to stick in the front of each case though.
February 5, 2012 11:31:55 AM

Something else to keep in mind...

H61 doesn't have native Intel SATA 6Gb/s support, so you're going to end up with (more than likely) Marvell 9128 controllers which are vastly inferior. If you ever plan on using a SSD in these systems you might make the switch to H67.

Also, as was mentioned earlier the G840 or even the G620 are perfectly capable gaming processors especially at this budget range. The 5770s are going to bottleneck well before either of these cpus in most situations.
February 5, 2012 4:13:28 PM

Oooo that sounds messy ok so what sub $100 h67 board do you guys suggest with all the features I mentioned that won't make me pull my hair out. (I read really bad things about those Intel boards that are on sale atm)
February 5, 2012 5:04:35 PM

By features I mean:
Sata 3 and 2 USB 2.0 & 3.0 + PCIe X16,X1,X1 and 1 or 2 Reg PCI

Isn't there any intel based boards that are rock stable like the old days?
Seems like every board I look at has a ton of RMA or issues in the feedback.
Or is that just the norm in todays mobo field?
February 5, 2012 5:08:51 PM

It's like anything else. People are roughly 8 times as likely to share their experiences with others when they're negative. People that buy things that work as intended typically don't go back to post positive reviews.

Don't get me wrong. PC building has a higher risk of malfunctioning equipment than many other hobbies but it's not nearly as widespread as reviews would make it out to be. With that being said I'd avoid any product that has an overwhelming majority of negative reviews, but you have to take the others with a grain of salt.
February 5, 2012 6:05:47 PM

that makes sense but is there a mfg that is considered more stable than others on the Intel Side now days? Or is pretty much all the mfg's on a level playing field?
February 5, 2012 6:27:04 PM

The 2120 is a fine gaming cpu. But lesser sandy bridge cpu's are also very good for the budget gamer.
Read this article:
It used a 7970 which eliminated graphics restrictions.
It showed a G860 or even G630 as being quite capable.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-fx-pentium-a...

Sata3 should not be a real issue. It increases the hard drive buffer to sata transfer rate for hard drives, but very few hard drive accesses will be satisfied from the buffer. Most of the time the data transfer rate will be limited by the mechanical motion of the hard drive which is much slower.

Even for a SSD, sata3 is really not a big deal. Yes, synthetic benchmarks will be better, but that is not what we normally do. It is mostly small random i/o that defines how quick we feel the drive is. A ssd of any kind on sata2 will still be 50x faster than the fastest hard drive.

USB 3.0 is very nice, particularly for external backup devices. But, really now important will that be to you?

The lowest priced suitable H61 motherboard I find is this asrock unit:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-fx-pentium-a...

A full atx motherboard will have 7 expansion slots, including a pcie x16 graphics card slot.
How many of those extra 6 could you possibly populate?
A M-ATX will have only 4 and a lower price.
February 5, 2012 6:34:01 PM

heyfunny said:
that makes sense but is there a mfg that is considered more stable than others on the Intel Side now days? Or is pretty much all the mfg's on a level playing field?


They are all based on the same intel chip, and I think there are only two bios suppliers. So yes, they are mostly the same.
Anything can have a failure, but you have newegg or other good vendors to take care of such things.
New motherboards do often get bios updates to fix minor issues, so buying a motherboard that has been out for a while will have any such issues cleared out of the way. By now, I would not worry about any such issues with any of the 1155 chipsets.
!