I am trying to design a new build and would like some advice on what I'm got. The only purpose of this build is gaming, and I'm trying to keep costs down, so my aim is to optimise it for gaming. I'm trying to get something that will run new games on full settings (preferable at 1080p, but certainly no higher), but without going too overboard on the specs. However, I aslo want to keep my options open for upgrading the CPU or GPU later if it becomes necessary.
Here is what I'm planning at the moment:
COOLERMASTER CENTURION 5 II, ATX CHASSIS without PSU, Side Window Panel, BLACK
COOLERMASTER EXTREME POWER PLUS 500W PSU, ATX 12V V2.3, 120mm FAN, W/O POWER CORD
INTEL® CORE™ I3 2100 - 3.13GHZ, SOCKET 1155, 3MB L3, DMI BUS,
EVGA GeForce GTX 560 Ti 1024MB 256-bit GDDR5 Memory Graphics Card
INTEL "Media Series" "Buffalo Flat" P67 Chipset Socket LGA 1155 Motherboard
CORSAIR Memory 4GB DDR3-1333 Desktop Memory
SEAGATE BARRACUDA 500GB SERIAL ATA III (SATA 6GB/S, 7200RPM, 16MB CACHE)
I's also considering a Z68 board (possibly GIGABYTE Z68P-DS3 LGA 1155), but I'm not sure if its really worth the extra cost.
Are there any problems with this build that I haven't seen? And is there anywhere that its worth cutting down?
Kind of depends on what your looking to play. 560 will play most games on high settings up will have some issues with a few GPU intensive games like bf3, crysis 2, metro, saints row 3, etc on MAX settings. But if your ever looking to sli a seconds 560 together in the near future you wont have any issues.
The case isnt bad, tried to look it up on new egg, to see the price but says its deactivated. If you can depending on your budget find one with some wire management it really helps with airflow and cleaning everything up especially if you want a window to see your build.
Would reccomend getting a better PSU. A corsair or seasonic are the best brands. Size just depends on if you plan to SLI later on. 500 is fine for one card but might not be for 2.
68 series is a motherboard for future proofing since they will fully support the new ivy bridge.
The i3 will be alright for gaming but the i5 would be better for games like skyrim, and bf3.
4gb ram is usually the minumum for alot of games now adays but 8gb is ideal. Plus RAM is so cheap you might aswell grab two 4gb sticks.
Thanks for the reply! The two games I've got in mind right now are Witcher 2 and skyrim. I don't mind not playing games on the highest settings, but my reasoning is that if I can play most current games on high, then I should be able to keep going with that card for a year or so. I don't intend to SLI the card, I assumed it would be better to get a better card when I reach the point of wanting to upgrade it. Or am I wrong about this?
Btw, I've listed an EVGA card here, but there is also the option of gigabyte, MSI or Asus. Would one of these be any better?
The case does have wire management - I've been bitten by that one in the past! I don't really care about the appearance of the case, but features like wire management and tool-free are important.
Better PSU meaning more power or a different brand?
When I can afford it, I will probably upgrade the i3 to an i7, so I'll probably stick with it for now unless its really going to be a problem.
Yes, I'll probably end up getting more ram, but that also might wait a month or so.
You shouldnt have any problems whatsoever playing the witcher 2. Im actually playing the witcher 2 right now, just bought it for $15 off amazon pretty good game so far. Skyrim on the other hand isnt a very GPU intense game. It more reallys on your CPU.
I have an evga gtx 580 and love it. There a great company, they make reliable cards and have great warrenty's on them to match. Got a lifetime warrenty on mine. You can check there website to see what you get with yours. Plus they have a stepup program that with in 90 you have the opportunity to buy a better card and just pay the price difference. So they really go above and beyond. They also have a program for $30 that they will send you a card if yours breaks so you dont have to be without a card while they look into your problem.
Better brand for a PSU. Look at the corsairs and seasonics. There a little more money but its worth it. Alot of problems can happen with your computer when you purchase a low name PSU. Its not worth the head ache to go cheap.
Honestly if its just a straight gaming build the i5 will do you just as good as the i7. Not many games actually use more than 4 cores. i7 is really only for people who are doing 3d rendering and actually need all 6 cores. If you got the money or can get the money to get an i5 right out the gate its worth every penny to do so. Like i said skyrim is a very CPU intensive game and really will run alot better on an i5 than a i3.
Yeah aslong as you have 4gb you should be all set. I would recommend buying 1 stick of 4gb ram though. Its better to have less sticks and more ram in a computer. So when you do upgrade to 8gb (which i do reccomend you do in the near future) you will have 2x4gb not 4x2gb.
So 500W should be ok then? I'll have a look at other brands though.
I recently tried playing skyrim on my laptop which is a core 2 duo, and struggled! But it was playable, if a bit lag-ish, so I had hoped that an i3 would be ok for now. The trouble is that this build is already stretching my budget, so to get an i5 I would need to downgrade on something else, and the only area I can see that this would be possible is the graphics card. But is it worth it?
I would also like to install the recently released HD textures for skyrim. Presumably this would add to the GPU load though, not the CPU?
Yes, I plan to get a 4G stick now and then another a bit later.
The more mods you throw into skyrim the more things the game needs to process to make it run. So it would be ideal to have the i5.
I recommend either a ASUS or gigabyte board. There both high quality boards. Personally i prefer ASUS because they have a better warrenty and have a few extra nice feature with there bios and programs.
Whats your budget? If you can let me know on how much you can spend. We could probably work an i5 into your build.
I live in South Africa, so I'm working in a different currency, but I was aiming for about $800 (R6000). At the moment I'm at about $1000 (R7500), which is really a bit above what I can afford - it might have to wait a month if I can't get it down to at least about $900. I'm using a local site to get prices (http://www.comx-computers.co.za. It's not the best site I've seen, but their prices are quite good!