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Beginner - Gaming - $400-600 (No external comps)

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April 28, 2012 8:31:52 PM

Hello, thanks for viewing my post. I am a complete beginner to building Desktops and need advice.

I am currently trying to build a gaming PC under $600. I already have a case, monitor, mouse and keyboard. My main focus is for it to be easy to upgrade in the future. I have a list of components I've been researching, but I really don't know if they are good for each other or if they are worth the price. I will list each component and why I thought it would be a good choice.

First off, I already have a Cooler Master Centurion Case.

http://www.coolermaster-usa.com/category.php?category_b...
It's a mid-tower case that can hold ATX and Micro ATX Motherboards.


Motherboard/CPU
I found a combo deal at Newegg for a Motherboard and CPU.
($109) GIGABYTE GA-970A-UD3 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard
($149) AMD FX-6100 Zambezi 3.3GHz Socket AM3+ 95W Six-Core Desktop Processor FD6100WMGUSBX

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... ($246 for both, saving $13)

I think I like this Motherboard because it seems to have a lot of space for future upgrades. The x4 240pin memory slots (max 32gb) seem nice for this purpose. It also has x2 PCI Express 2.0 slots in case I want to use SLI in the future.
The processor just seems like a decently powerful CPU that came bundled with a Mobo I liked.


Video Card
I'm really not sure which card I want or should use. As long as I can upgrade it with ease in the next year or two I'm fine. I want something that can play Diablo 3 on High graphics well. This is the card I came up with:
GIGABYTE GV-N550D5-1GI GeForce GTX 550 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ($119)

It has an average G3D Benchmark of 1884 on www.videocardbenchmark.net , which sounds pretty good to me for the price. Ideally, any card above 1500 mark for a good price is great. Or, a very cheap card with 1000+ mark, that I can upgrade within the next year.


Memory
I would like to have RAM that I could eventually upgrade to 32GB. I chose a 16GB (8gb x2) for this purpose. I would love to get just a 8GB single stick (for cheap), but there were so few and with no reviews on Newegg that I couldn't choose one. Here's what I chose:
CORSAIR 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model CMV16GX3M2A1333C9

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ($95)

This memory had some good ratings, is the type I'm looking for(I think), and is under $100.


HD
I'm really not sure what I need here. I know I don't need a lot of space and I want to play games. This is what I chose:
Western Digital Caviar Green WD3200AZRX 320GB IntelliPower 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...($75)

Not knowledgeable here.. SATA 6.0Gb, 64mb Cache is good right? 320GB is plenty of space for me.


PSU/DVD Drive
I'm really have no idea what to do here. I know I want a future capable machine that I can mainly just upgrade the Video Card and RAM on for a while. So I'm assuming a PSU with over 600-watts would be necessary?


Is there anything I'm missing? I'm not familiar with cooling systems either, some advice there would be great!
So far the the total price is:
Mobo/CPU $246
GPU $119
RAM $95
HD $75
PSU/DVD $??

Total $535 (I doubt the remaining components will fit in my budget)
Where can I trim? Where can I improve?

Thanks very much!

Best solution

April 28, 2012 9:25:59 PM

I wouldn't recommend going with an FX CPU for gaming. Intel's Sandy Bridge architecture is simply superior for games. You can get the same performance as that FX-6 out of a lowly Pentium G620. At your budget however, I'd grab the more powerful i3-2120. That will beat basically any current AMD CPU at stock settings (in games).

Current games won't use more than 4GB of RAM so most go with either 4GB or 8GB for a gaming build. Even that extra 4GB up to 8GB probably won't make any difference in games.

That hard drive is one of the slower 5400RPM drives. It will consume a bit less power but be slower than any 7200RPM drive. I'd grab a WD blue, black or a Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM.

That graphics card is OK for the price but I think you could get something a bit better at your budget. I'd aim for the GTX 560Ti 2GB or the HD 7850 2GB. The HD 7850 is a lot better for the price but Blizzard games seem to prefer Nvidia cards for some reason.

For the PSU you'd need 400W+ for the i3 and 550Ti/HD 7850. For the GTX 560Ti I'd get 500W because it consumes a bit more power. Seasonic are probably the best for PSU's, they do some 430W and 520W models.
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April 28, 2012 9:56:18 PM

Best answer selected by dsemitit.
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April 28, 2012 9:56:54 PM

Great reply! How about the Motherboard??
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April 29, 2012 8:24:36 PM

Any H77 board should be great, I tend to go with ASRock personally.
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