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Budget Gaming Build Suggestions for 1st Timer

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March 26, 2012 6:41:14 AM

Looking to build a budget gaming PC for around $800 that will be capable of playing Starcraft 2 and Diablo 3. I've done quite of bit of research, but still would love suggestions for the build that I've come up with.

CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz (3.4GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 2000 BX80623I52400 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: EVGA 01G-P3-1556-KR GeForce GTX 550 Ti (Fermi) FPB 1GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HDD: Samsung by Seagate Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ/ST500DM005 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...

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: Antec BP550 Plus 550W Continuous Power ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CASE: COOLER MASTER Elite 430 RC-430-KWN1 Black Steel / Plastic Computer Case http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

DISC DRIVE: ASUS 24X DVD Burner - Bulk 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS - OEM http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I originally wanted to go with the i5 2500k, but it's a bit pricier than the i5 2400. Also I'm not too knowledgeable on GPUs and really don't understand how they are "rated" (for lack of a better term). I checked the system requirements for both games and it says for Starcraft 2 I need "128 MB PCIe NVIDIA® GeForce® 6600 GT or ATI Radeon® 9800 PRO video card or better" and for Diablo 3 "NVIDIA® GeForce® 7800 GT or ATI Radeon™ X1950 Pro or better". That's gibberish to me and I want to make sure that I meet these requirements. I know they are just different makes and models, but it's not like they just started at 1 and the higher the number the better the GPU...unless I don't think that's how it works, if it is I feel dumb now. If you have any suggestions to improve this current build for a reasonable price or maybe have suggestions to where I could save money and still get equal or better performance then that would be great. Also, I noticed that the motherboard I selected has 2 pci express 3.0 x16 slots and my GPU is 2.0 x16 are these backwards compatible? If there are any other compatibility issues let me know.
March 26, 2012 6:48:06 AM

Budget?
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March 26, 2012 6:51:15 AM

azeem40 said:
Budget?


$800
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Anonymous
March 26, 2012 7:25:27 AM

Quote:
Looking to build a budget gaming PC for around $800 that will be capable of playing Starcraft 2 and Diablo 3.


if those are pretty much your ONLY requirements try:

Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz $127.99 Combo savings with DVD burner, ends 3/31
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASUS P8H67-V (REV 3.0) $104.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 $25.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EDIT: i have the CPU, GPU and MOBO and for the performance i was surprised i can run crysis2 @ 40+ FPS at high setting 1900x1080.
you'll have to drop down in ram from 1600 to 1333 but does that make a big difference?
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March 26, 2012 8:33:10 AM

Anonymous said:
Quote:
Looking to build a budget gaming PC for around $800 that will be capable of playing Starcraft 2 and Diablo 3.


if those are pretty much your ONLY requirements try:

Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz $127.99 Combo savings with DVD burner, ends 3/31
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASUS P8H67-V (REV 3.0) $104.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 $25.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

EDIT: i have the CPU, GPU and MOBO and for the performance i was surprised i can run crysis2 @ 40+ FPS at high setting 1900x1080.
you'll have to drop down in ram from 1600 to 1333 but does that make a big difference?


Those won't be the only games I will be playing, but they are the 2 most recently released that I would like to play. I would also like this machine to be able to play future titles as well. I'm also a college student so I will be using it for school and just everyday internet, music, and video viewing. Also, correct me if I'm wrong, overclocking isn't an option with the H67 chipset and while initially I won't be looking to OC...I would like to eventually. I'm just not planning on it until I get an aftermarket heatsink and I didn't include that in this build just yet because I'm trying to save where ever possible.
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March 26, 2012 9:39:02 AM

Intel Core i3-2120 $128
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
ASUS P8H61-M LE/CSM (REV 3.0) $70
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
SeaSonic 520w PSU $70
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
8GB 1600MHz MUSHKIN RAM $45
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
WD Caviar Blue 500GB HDD $85
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Antec 300 Case $70 - $10 off w/ promo code EMCNGHG82, ends 3/29
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
LITE-ON DVD Burner $18
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

-------

MSI GTX 560Ti $220 ($190 after rebates)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Total comes to $806 before rebates/promo


Notes:

CPU - Not over-clockable but very well priced in terms of price vs. performance. It's a better combo to have say an i3-2120 paired with a GTX 560Ti than it is to have an i5-2400 with a GTX 550Ti. Unless the CPU is a K series CPU, it is not overclockable anyway, regardless of the motherboard you have.

Motherboard - Solid manufacturer, no need to pay extra for Z68.


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Anonymous
March 26, 2012 11:13:55 AM

breakout89 said:
Those won't be the only games I will be playing, but they are the 2 most recently released that I would like to play. I would also like this machine to be able to play future titles as well. I'm also a college student so I will be using it for school and just everyday internet, music, and video viewing. Also, correct me if I'm wrong, overclocking isn't an option with the H67 chipset and while initially I won't be looking to OC...I would like to eventually. I'm just not planning on it until I get an aftermarket heatsink and I didn't include that in this build just yet because I'm trying to save where ever possible.


ok so the ASrock Z68 it is!

IF and i repeat IF you are looking to shave a few bucks and pick up an aftermarket cooler; here is a side by side review of the i3 2120 and i5 2400:
http://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/hardware-canucks-r...

the i3 MAY do you over until you get a "K" processor.

just a thought where you could put the price difference now.
COOLER MASTER Hyper 212 Plus Now: $29.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HOWEVER it would be wiser to spend anything left over on upgrading the graphics card of the 550ti
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March 27, 2012 4:04:27 AM

AdrianPerry said:



Notes:

CPU - Not over-clockable but very well priced in terms of price vs. performance. It's a better combo to have say an i3-2120 paired with a GTX 560Ti than it is to have an i5-2400 with a GTX 550Ti. Unless the CPU is a K series CPU, it is not overclockable anyway, regardless of the motherboard you have.

Motherboard - Solid manufacturer, no need to pay extra for Z68.


Couple of questions:
- (Why is an i3-2120 paired with a GTX 560Ti > i5-2400 with a GTX 550Ti) Not saying your wrong or anything just trying to get a better understanding.
- If an Intel processor isn't a "K series" or does not have a "K" on the end then it's not overclockable?
- As far as motherboard chipsets go for a gaming computer would you recommend the P67 since I won't be looking to use any type of integrated graphics and I'll be looking to get a GPU anyways? From my understanding the difference between chipsets is H67 allows onboard graphics, but doesn't allow OC / P67 onboard graphics is disabled, but OC is allowed / Z68 allows onboard graphics and OC (H67+P67=Z68) Is this right?
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Anonymous
March 27, 2012 4:38:01 AM

breakout89 said:
Couple of questions:
- (Why is an i3-2120 paired with a GTX 560Ti > i5-2400 with a GTX 550Ti) Not saying your wrong or anything just trying to get a better understanding.
- If an Intel processor isn't a "K series" or does not have a "K" on the end then it's not overclockable?
- As far as motherboard chipsets go for a gaming computer would you recommend the P67 since I won't be looking to use any type of integrated graphics and I'll be looking to get a GPU anyways? From my understanding the difference between chipsets is H67 allows onboard graphics, but doesn't allow OC / P67 onboard graphics is disabled, but OC is allowed / Z68 allows onboard graphics and OC (H67+P67=Z68) Is this right?


not to rude and answer FOR perry:

i believe he was giving you suggestions for the most inexpensive configuration possible without hampering performance.
i3-2120 paired with a GTX 560Ti > i5-2400 with a GTX 550Ti
that would be correct. games rely more heavily on the GPU than CPU. with the i3 a breath away from the i5 in gaming, the 560Ti would give you better results.
"K" are overclockable.
H series are usually cheaper than P series and if your not overclocking would be unnecessary. (but now we know you stated you would) Zs are the best of both as you stated.
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March 27, 2012 7:50:32 AM

breakout89 said:
Couple of questions:
- (Why is an i3-2120 paired with a GTX 560Ti > i5-2400 with a GTX 550Ti) Not saying your wrong or anything just trying to get a better understanding.
- If an Intel processor isn't a "K series" or does not have a "K" on the end then it's not overclockable?
- As far as motherboard chipsets go for a gaming computer would you recommend the P67 since I won't be looking to use any type of integrated graphics and I'll be looking to get a GPU anyways?



1) Yes, an i3-2120 with a GTX 560Ti would give more FPS in games than an i5-2400 and GTX 550Ti.
2) That is correct. It needs to be a K series processor (i5-2500K, i7-2600K ect)
3) Unless you get a K series / over-clockable CPU, a P67 and Z68 board are not going to offer you anything more than a H61/H67 board can, other than possibly SSD caching but I doubt that's a feature you'll make use of.

Pairing a i5-2400 with a Z68/P67 means you cannot over-clock because the CPU multiplier isn't unlocked. Therefore you may as well save some money and go with a H61/H67 motherboard. If you want to be able to over-clock, your going to need an i5-2500K with a P67 or Z68 motherboard.

This in turn I believe would eat up too much of your budget, and you would find much greater gaming performance from an i3-2120, H61 motherboard (since the CPU cannot be over-clocked anyway), and a higher end graphics card, GTX 560Ti or similar.

breakout89 said:
From my understanding the difference between chipsets is H67 allows onboard graphics, but doesn't allow OC / P67 onboard graphics is disabled, but OC is allowed / Z68 allows onboard graphics and OC (H67+P67=Z68) Is this right?


Correct.
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