Need good advice before purchase

Please tell me which build is better and why. Specifics would be nice as well as links.

Intel i3-2120 build

Motherboard: $121 ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157271

Processor: $125 Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115077

Video Card: $190 ($160 after rebate) XFX Double D HD-687A-ZDFC Radeon HD 6870
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150521

Memory: $47 G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231314

Power Supply: $55 APEVIA ATX-AS680W-BL 680W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817148022

Hard Drive: $80 Samsung by Seagate Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ/ST500DM005 500GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152181

Case: $60 Antec Gaming Series one illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129182

TOTAL: $648 (678 w/o rebate)

or

AMD FX-4100 build

Motherboard: $110 GIGABYTE GA-970A-UD3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128519

Processor: $110 AMD FX-4100 Zambezi 3.6GHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103996

Video Card: $190 ($160 after rebate) XFX Double D HD-687A-ZDFC Radeon HD 6870
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150521

Memory: $47 G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231314

Power Supply: $55 APEVIA ATX-AS680W-BL 680W
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817148022

Hard Drive: $80 Samsung by Seagate Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ/ST500DM005 500GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152181

Case: $60 Antec Gaming Series one illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129182

CD/DVD reader/writer: $18 ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner - Bulk - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827135204

TOTAL: $ 610 (640 w/o rebate)

THANKS FOR YOUR HELP AND TIME!!!!!!
11 answers Last reply
More about need good advice purchase
  1. If the computer that you are building is for gaming then I would go with the Intel build , since it is well known that Intel cpu's are better for gaming.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-review-overclock,3106-5.html

    As you can see in this chart of best gaming cpu's by order of rank where the i3-2120 is vs the FX-4100.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-card-review,3107-7.html

    Here's one for the video cards.
  2. Do not get that PSU - go Corsair, Antec, Seasonic, XFX, Silverstone, PC Power & Cooling...
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371031 is a pretty good deal - don't cheap out on your supply!!
    -Bruce
  3. +1 inzone^
    Intel is better for gaming.

    On your intel build, I like all the parts EXCEPT the Apevia psu.
    Apevia is not considered as a quality brand.

    It should not cost you more to go with a quality brand psu.
    Seasonic, XFX, Corsair, PC P&C, and Antec would be safe choices.

    The 6870 needs only a 500w psu; not that overprovisioning to 600w or 650w is a bad idea.
  4. if you have a micro center near you for 20.00 more then new egg the have the 3540. (getting 4 core cpu ib.) the ib mb is 20.00 more the the x68 on new egg. ram and video card and power supples are less money but better ones.
  5. I would take the AMD build, only if you went with a Phenom II 965 over the FX-4100. I would take a Phenom II over an i3 for the simple fact that an i3 is a dual core, and a Phenom II is a true quad, (FX-4100s are not true quads).

    I personally disagree with Tom's Hardware reviewers about the Phenom II vs the i3, the quad vs dual being my primary justification. Most games only use 2 cores at this current point in time, however this is subject to change surely as new titles come out. Also a Phenom II is overclockable, an i3 is not.

    Another thought on that is, if gaming is your only concern, sure go ahead and get the i3, but in terms of multitasking and general productivity on the computer, the i3 isn't going to perform as well in that area being only a dual core..

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103727

    I agree with previous posts mentioning getting a better performing power supply rather than the generic Apevia.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139027&Tpk=cx500
  6. I will this computer to play grpahic intensive vide games and download very large files. I do not do photo/video editing whats so ever. I want a computer that I can take to college with me this fall and that will satisfy my needs for many years. I wont overclock for a while but I might in college. Which is better? And i have chosen the Phenom II x4 965 over the fx-4100. Also, could you all please give me links to benchmarks, comparisons, and links to good power supplies? BTW, my budget MAX is $700.

    Thank you all!!!
  7. If I choose the Phenom II x4 965 how many watts should my PSU have? And why is my brand bad? It got good reviews on Newegg.
  8. Benchmark comparisons:

    i3-2100 vs 965 (2120 will perform slightly better)
    http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/289?vs=102

    i3-2100 vs 965 @3.7GHZ ( a 980 model is identical to the 965 just clocked higher)
    http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/289?vs=362

    The difference is unnoticeable in gaming in terms of actual playing experience although the i3 does perform better "on paper", however the gist of the benchmarks, is everywhere more than 2 cores is called into play, the Phenom II performs better. Both of them will do what you you're looking for most likely, however my personal favor falls on the side of an overclockable quad core.


    As far as a full build on your budget, everything you've chosen is pretty good except the power supply. I personally wouldn't pick a Gigabyte board, but thats only because I had one die on me 3 weeks after I built the system and had a bad experience with their tech support.

    You could cut your budget some with this motherboard:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157280

    With the money you save you could buy a CPU cooler (I wouldn't push a Phenom II past 3.7GHZ on the stock cooler), but 4.0 with this cooler should be easy.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835103099

    As far as power supplies, I gave you a link to a Corsair CX500, its a pretty decent one.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139027&Tpk=cx500

    Regarding the video card, this one is the same card, clocked a little bit higher and a little cheaper:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121418
  9. napsterlone said:
    If I choose the Phenom II x4 965 how many watts should my PSU have? And why is my brand bad? It got good reviews on Newegg.


    500 watts would be sufficient for a single video card setup, as far as the apevia power supply, it doesnt have an 80+ efficiency certification and the warranty is pretty short (only 1 year), generally speaking you can tell the quality of a power supply by the warranty the manufacturer is willing to back it up with
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/80_PLUS
  10. nekulturny said:
    500 watts would be sufficient for a single video card setup, as far as the apevia power supply, it doesnt have an 80+ efficiency certification and the warranty is pretty short (only 1 year), generally speaking you can tell the quality of a power supply by the warranty the manufacturer is willing to back it up with
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/80_PLUS


    First off, I want to thank you for all your amazing advice. Now, I'm keeping the XFX GPU because its the same price as the one you posted with the rebate. In the details it says that it requires a 500 minimum PSU, preferably more. Will the quality Corsair 500w be sufficient? And what are the differences witht he mobo you posted and the one I chose? Do i need the one i chose? I also wanted a usb 3.0 going to the front, which yours doesnt have, but is there a cable that can make it into a 3.0?
  11. You're welcome.

    The details regarding how many watts PSU is required is cushioned, realistically you could probably get away with 400 watts with a good quality power supply which a Corsair CX500 is.

    The differences between the 2 motherboards is not substantial. They both use the same chipset. Although the Asrock board only has a 1 year warranty, the Gigabyte board has a 3 year. Asrock is a competent motherboard manufacturer, but for some reason they're stingy on their warranties. Largely the only difference is price.

    Both boards can support dual video cards (however for dual 6870s (if you ever decided to do so) 650 watts would be better.

    As far s getting USB 3.0 on the front, the case looks like it comes with an adapter to use one of the USB 2.0 headers on the board, so at least the USBs on the front panel will work, albeit not at USB 3.0 Speeds. I *think* there is another adapter you can buy to bum off of one of the USB 3.0 ports on the back of the board, but I can't seem to find one on newegg, maybe someone else has an idea.
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