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Cheap build for later upgrade

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April 9, 2012 12:12:04 AM

Approximate Purchase Date: Possibly later this week, depends if apple gives me a free power cord

Budget Range: $600 including shipping and rebates, not including graphics card, monitor, OS

System Usage: Now word processing, internet, movie watching, maybe some light gaming. Later heavy gaming

Preferred place for Parts: Ideally in store at microcenter, newegg, or any other site accessible from the US is fine though.

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU don't care about anything else

Overclocking: Possibly

SLI or Crossfire: In the future

Monitor Resolution: starting with an old Dell CRT, hope to upgrade to 1080p lcd in the future.

Additional Comments: This will be my first build, and I am on a budget so right now I'm looking at bare necessities, things that I will need to just have a computer available for myself. I am planning to wait until all of the new generation of graphics cards are out to decide on a GPU to be put in, i've lived with the intel gmax3100 for 3 years, I can live with intel's HD 3000 for several months.

What I'm looking at so far:

Processor:Intel core i5-2500k $180 at microcenter

Motherboard:Gigabyte GA-Z68X-UD3H-B3 $95 at microcenter

Optical Drive:LG 22x sata dvd super multi dvd burner $18 at microcenter

Hard Drive:Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB $130 at microcenter

Memory:G.Skill ripjaws DDR3 1600 (2x4GB) $47 on Newegg

PSU: PC Power and Cooling Silencer 760w $80 at microcenter

Case:NZXT source 210 $30 at microcenter

total: $580

I doubt I'll need 1 TB of space at this time so I'm thinking of getting a 500 GB hard drive instead, but the caviar blacks are only about 10 dollars cheaper for that amount of space. Or would you recommend just going for a cheaper hard drive, ie. Seagaste, samsung, hitachi?

I would prefer to be able to pick everything up at a store as soon as possible so I may take a different ram that is available at microcenter. Is there really a noticeable difference between the 1333 and the 1600, if not I will go with the cheaper of the two.

A 750w PSU is overkill for what I'm going to get immediately, but I am thinking about using dual GPUs at a later date and this particular PSU is a similar price to most 650w PSUs.

I don't care too much about the aesthetics of the case, I would prefer a plain looking case, and it isn't something I want to spend too much money on. It just needs to be roomy in case I decide to get one of the bigger GPU's

Any other thoughts or comments you guys have will be welcome. Feel free to rip my possible build to shreds. Thanks.

More about : cheap build upgrade

April 11, 2012 11:08:41 PM

Bumping and some changes.

hard drive changing to 750 GB caviar black off of newegg for $100, which brings the total down to $550

I'm still not sure about the motherboard, it has quite a few bad reviews, I'm now looking at the ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 for $75 at microcenter or the ASRock Z68 Extreme 4 Gen3 for $135 at microcenter. Which brings the new total to $530 or $590 respectively.

Any thoughts on these motherboards?
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April 11, 2012 11:24:05 PM

Hoooold on for a second. "Apple"? Are you making a hackintosh? If so, everything's going to be different. You're running Windows 64 bit, right?

Anyway... if you can't wait until April 29th (if you can, tell me, and I'll tell you what to change), here's my opinion:
Get a CPU cooler. Hyper 212+ or EVO is fine.
RAM is about $7 overpriced... I guess it's fine, though
Get the Extreme3 motherboard. It's good enough, and it's amazing for overclockers.

Also, make sure your GPU doesn't bottleneck. For a gaming PC, usually the best thing to upgrade is the GPU. If it's really old, you won't notice a difference on your games.

Apart from that, it's a nice build. IB is coming out April 29th, though, so if you can wait, it's worth it. I'll just tell you what to change if you can now:

CPU: Change to i5-3750k - $220 at release, don't know about microcenter prices
Mobo: Change to an ASRock Extreme4 Z77 mobo. It's $150 at newegg at the moment... again, don't know when microcenter will get it. It's available now at newegg, though. IB hasn't come out yet.
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April 12, 2012 12:26:10 AM

no, the apple power cord would be a replacement for my old no longer on applecare macbook, that thin little wire broke again and I'm not spending $90 for something that will break within the year. I'm going for a windows machine now. I just need access to a computer at home which is why I can't wait until the 29th, unless they give me a free powercord in which case I will wait for ivy bridge.

as for GPU I'll probably try to go for the 670ti if it comes out near the $300 mark. otherwise it will probably be the 7850 or 7870(if it's price drops).

is a cpu cooler extremely necessary right now, or can I go with the stock fan and replace it when I purchase the graphics card.
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April 12, 2012 12:47:49 AM

You can replace your stock fan later on. You just won't be able to overclock very well in the meantime. Also, can you do IB? It comes out April 29th, so it's not too far away.
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April 14, 2012 6:46:23 PM

Best answer selected by macncapn.
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April 14, 2012 6:48:29 PM

the apple store replaced my power cable for free despite being off of warranty a continuation on a long line of great customer service ive had from them. I know that kind of goes against what everyone else says, I'll be waiting for ivy bridge to come out before I put this thing together now, thanks for the help.
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April 14, 2012 7:23:08 PM

No problem! Glad everything worked out.

Word to the wise: the words "Apple" and "Mac" ignite flame wars like no other on these forums :) 
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