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Gaming/Budget build for a first timer

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February 17, 2012 5:16:36 PM

Hi everyone, I'll try keep it short and sweet.

My PSU just fried on a 5+ year old system and I'm looking to build a PC for the first time. I've not really ever ventured into this before, though I've always liked the thought of doing it, and finally decided to jump in and do my research.

Approximate Purchase Date: One week. Two weeks max if need be.

Budget Range: Originally £600, though the max I'm willing to stretch to is £800ish.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Watching Movies, Gaming, Web browsing, DVD ripping, Movie capture & editing, Image editing, Website developing/programming.

Parts Not Required: Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor, Speakers, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Amazon.co.uk Dabbs.co.uk Play.com eBuyer.co.uk

Country: UK (England)

Parts Preferences: Intel/Nvidia (Maybe Ati)

Overclocking: Eventually

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional comments: I'm only a casual gamer, but when I do I game, I do like to have the best visuals possible. Will most likely play games like BF3 and Skyrim. I will also use my system for watching a lot of Blu-rays. Otherwise a little bit of everything else, I do enjoy editing movies, rarely in HD. As well as the occasional Photoshop usage.

I've constructed a rough build, though I'm highly open to suggestions if I need to make changes.

Cooler Master HAF 912 Plus - £76.37
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cooler-Master-HAF-Plus--SATA/dp...

-OR-

Zalman Z9 Plus - £45.95
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Zalman-Z9-Plus/dp/B004FPQL0E/re...

Corsair TX Series 650W - £70.36
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Corsair-CMPSU-650TXV2UK-Enthusi...

-OR-

Corsair HX Series 650W - £89.98
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Corsair-CMPSU-650HX-Professiona...

Intel i5 2500k - £165.98
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Intel-Sandybridge-i5-2500K-Quad...

Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus - £46.34
http://www.play.com/PC/PCs/4-/11718775/Cooler-Master-Hy...

Asus P8Z68-V Pro/Gen3 - £146.59
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Asus-P8Z68-V-PRO-GEN3-Motherboa...

Corsair 8GB 1600MHz DDR3 Vengeance - £37.80
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Corsair-CMZ8GX3M2A1600C9-1600MH...

EVGA Nvidia GTX 550ti - £100.25
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Nvidia-GTX550Ti-192-Bit-Ready-G...

Seagate 500GB 7200rpm 16mb 6Gb/s - £59.98
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Seagate-ST500DM002-500GB-Serial...

Crucial 64GB SSD - £74.98
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Crucial-CT064M4SSD2-64GB-M4-SSD...

LG Blu Ray Drive - £72.52
http://www.amazon.co.uk/LG-BH10LS30-AUAR10B-Internal-Bl...

Was originally looking at the Corsair TX series, though I've read the HX is more reliable. Worth the upgrade? I'm a bit sceptical of the TX so I wouldn't mind spending the little more if advised.

Though I have a 500GB 5200rpm SATA II HDD, it is over 5 years old, other than throwing it in just to back up my old files and for data. I would also like to go for another 500GB SATA III HDD for more of my files particularly for movie capture & editing.

Love the idea of having a SSD for the OS to boot from, for faster day to day use. Is 64GB enough for the OS with a few day to day programs to be installed on? 120+GB seems a tad overboard particularly the price. (A case to incorporate these in important)

Though I have a Saitek GM3200 mouse, it's getting old and the buttons are becoming worn and less responsive. I would eventually be looking at getting a new gaming mouse. Any suggestions?

I think I've longed this post out more than need be, I don't think I've missed anything out. Any and all advice welcome. Thanks!

More about : gaming budget build timer

February 17, 2012 5:34:01 PM

If you don't think that you are going to be installing a lot of programs and large programs, then 64 GBs is enough. However, I think most people just find 64GB too restrictive. Keep in mind you want to leave plenty of free space on the drive to ensure optimal operations and if you want the swap file on the SSD it would cut even farther into the 64 GBs.

If you think you can get by on a 20 GBs OS and 20GBs worth of programs, stick with the 64, otherwise you might want to stretch for the 128 GBs.

Gaming - I wouldn't hope for too much in terms of maxxing current games out with a 550 TI, but it is an OK card. You may want to get a 6850 instead. This is the ideal card for people on a restrictive budget (as you are).

RAM - CT2KIT51264BA1339 should be cheaper and has lower failure rates. It should perform exactly the same in all the stuff you said you want to do.

Motherboard - Sounds a little bit overkillish. I wouldn't spend 25% of a budget that size on a motherboard. I would think about paying more like 80 or 90 pounds instead of 140.

PSU - I would get an XFX 650w instead.

Case - I would take the HAF 912 out of those two options.

Keyboard/Mouse - I just use regular $15 stuff.
February 17, 2012 7:16:10 PM

Thanks for the reply. I'll give the SSD a little bit more thought.

Totally forgot about the 6850. Thanks.

Any particular reason I should look at the XFX 650 rather than the Corsair?
February 17, 2012 7:46:50 PM

I trust the brand more.

They only use Seasonic as their OEM so you don't have to bother verifying it is a Seasonic PSU you are getting. Corsair uses at least one other OEM and on many of its models, so you often have to look it up.

A lot of people come in here with PSU problems that have Corsair PSUs, I can't remember seeing anyone come in here with an XFX PSU problem.

General experience, I guess.

I put my money where my mouth is, though, all the PSUs in my house are from XFX.
!