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Building a gaming computer for sub $500

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May 28, 2012 2:32:50 AM

I want to build a computer for my brother for less than $500. I cannot stretch beyond $500 and would very likely not consider a $480 build.

This computer will be for low resolution gaming. The most demanding game I would consider would be skyrim which my brother would happily play at the lowest graphics settings. The main game being played is World of Warcraft which I would prefer 60 fps on a a mixture of high and ultra settings in low population areas, and never dropping below 20 fps on the same graphics settings in any encounter.

So far the idea I have is running with an i3-2120 and a radeon hd 7750 which would allow me to save money by buying a weaker power supply.
May 29, 2012 5:03:24 AM

For what resolution?

(Skyrim is not really hardware demanding, with the 7750 on the i3, you should be ok on High-Ultra sets with 28-32 avg fps on 1920x1080.)
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May 29, 2012 6:16:49 AM

Okay, here's a build based on those criteria:

  • CD Drive: LITE-ON DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA Model iHAS124-04 - OEM

  • Case: NZXT GAMMA Classic Series GAMA-001BK Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    Notes: This is a barebones case I've worked with many times.

  • Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Blue WD1600AAJS 160GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    Notes: This is the cheapest hard drive available on Newegg, I've used them before and they're well-reviewed. Hard drive prices are still raised a bit due to the massive factory flooding a while ago. You could also get a 64GB solid state drive for about $140 (and I highly recommend them), but you'd have to go over your budget to do so.

  • Motherboard: ASRock A55M-HVS FM1 AMD A55 (Hudson D2) HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
    Notes: This is the cheapest AMD APU motherboard on Newegg, but it's reviewed well and doesn't appear to have any common drawbacks or glitches.

  • PSU: Antec NEO ECO 400C 400W Continuous Power ATX12V 2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply
    Notes: This is the cheapest PSU that won't set your case on fire. Note that it doesn't come with a power cable, you need to buy it separately.

  • Memory: Kingston HyperX Blu 4GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 Desktop Memory Model KHX1333C9D3B1/4G

  • CPU: AMD A6-3500 Llano 2.1GHz (2.4GHz Max Turbo) Socket FM1 65W Triple-Core Desktop APU (CPU + GPU) with DirectX 11 Graphic AMD ...
    Notes: This APU should suit your brother's Skyrim needs just fine. Here's some benchmarks of a comparable A6 to give you an idea of the FPS you can expect. You can upgrade to the A8 if you're comfortable spending a little more.

  • OS: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM

  • Newegg Promotional Gift Card - $20.00
    TOTAL: $473.77
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    June 3, 2012 12:43:05 AM

    nacos said:
    So I guess I forgot to say that I don't need a copy of windows 7.
    I have come up with this build, is there anything I should change? http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...

    I do know for sure that the 7750 will run on a 300w psu even though amd's website says 400w.


    For the cpu get the i3: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Total with the i3: 497.93

    Even though you can't go over $480 i highly recommend upgrading that cpu
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    June 3, 2012 1:14:58 AM

    g-gill24 said:
    For the cpu get the i3: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

    Total with the i3: 497.93

    Even though you can't go over $480 i highly recommend upgrading that cpu


    http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/143?vs=406

    That i3 is barely an improvement according to the benchmarks, and I had to compare it to a G620 since the G630 is not on the list. It certainly doesn't warrant a $45 increase and if I did decide to spend more on the processor I would rather raise it by $50 and get the i3-2120 instead.
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