Need help on a budget gaming build ($500)

EDIT: 0LONG STORY SHORT, FIRST POST) wanted to spend the least amount on a decent gaming computer. was really stuck on amd vs intel for the processor. its now about a week later, and I have an i5-3570k Ivy Bridge. kinda broke the budget, but its securing a good computer for me for the next couple of years, plus with the z77 boards I like all the new features, and the Intel HD graphic 4000 will hold me off. ALSO bought some stuff at fry's electronics but am now returning as I found the combo section on newegg which I can save some money on.

Approximate Purchase Date: this week (really wanna get it tomorrow but thats a little soon haha)

Budget Range: $500..dont really wanna go over, (FOR NOW, I want to upgrade this build and add to it as money comes in and is appropriate) know thats hard but hoping i can use a few spare computer parts I have lying around

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming!! Internet surfing with multiple tabs, downloading programs, listening to music

Parts Not Required:i have a trinitron monitor I just found laying around in my father's house, right after I found out their good CRT gaming monitors! also have keyboard and mouse, I have a few old spare dell optiplex's, and even a gateway i think, theyre atleast 4-5 years old Im pretty sure but Im hoping I can pull out a PSU from one of them, maybe even a mobo if I one has a LGA 1155. Also hoping maybe I can use the shell, FOR NOW

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: seems good, but anywhere with good prices. Im located in AZ in the US and have a best buy, and a frys electronics close to me. Not sure what else, just anywhere with a good deal that's reputable and will return or reimburse me if I receive a defective product.

Country: US

Parts Preferences: hmm well at first was looking at AMD Phenom II BE's, and was pretty set on one, but after reading the Intel vs AMD debate so many times it seems an Intel cpu would be the way to go. It's way more in my price range for an AMD, but I feel like I'd regret it every so often not having an Intel if I spent the money on an AMD and thinking I should've just went all the way.

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Not currently, at some point Im sure I would. Would be nice to have the option open.

Monitor Resolution: Im not exactly sure the resolution on my Trinitron monitor..

Additional Comments: be able to support all upcoming games at a medium quality at least, I've never really had a gaming pc so every game I've always played on the computer has been lowest quality. I would really LOVE to be able to play high or even ultra settings, just whatever is the most possible with my budget. It seems if I do careful picking I'll be able to almost max settings without AA and whatnot with my budget still.. I play a lot (or try to, though my pc can't handle it) steam games, MMO's, Crimecraft, Trying Grimlands and APB but its too laggy (low FPS), and Ive been wanting to play more FPS's but the lag messes me up a lot currently.

So there's the outline filled out I was told told to follow. I'm not exactly ready to list every part from on here just yet because I'd like your guy's advice on what I should do. I have atleast 2-3 maybe 4 old pc's laying around my house, and a decent laptop Ive been contemplating on selling as well to contribute to these funds. The old computers Im hoping I'd be able to part out. How would I be able to tell the watts on the PSU of one of the comps if I opened it up? should it say it right on there? Other than "possibly" a mobo, which I doubt, and I doubt it'd even have a nice BIOS if I found one with a socket type I'd need, but anything else I could pull out and use from some old' pc's on my upcoming build? Like say if I had an AM3 mobo then I may go Phenom II and save some money, but that not being the case Im thinking if I buy then Ill get a newer Intel socket type. How do I identify the socket on a mobo, btw? Should I not even be asking here, is this the wrong place? I apologize if it is. Okay to continue..

Im thinking if I can afford it I'd like to get an i5-2500k..They beat AMD every time at stock and they still have great OC room. They seem like one of those great processor's I should get that would last me awhile. After looking at those though, Im wondering if I should go Ivy Bridge since that's now out. I'd like to get something that'll last. But then I hear IB gets pretty hot when you OC and there's still a couple kinks to work out. They do perform slightly better though and use a little less watts than it's SB counterpart, which will help with me using an old PSU as the gpu I get will probably push whatever low wattage one will most likely be on one of my older comp's. On top of that, it'd be nice to have the option for OC, and the Ivy OC (3570k) I think is the lowest one right now and that's $240, which is even more than the $200-$220 i5-2500k which was already pushing it. I'd say i5-2400, but for so much little more it'd be better to get the OC'able version.
But then I hear a good quad-core proc with good overclocking ability will be more than enough for what I need, eg Phenom II BE 965-985. They seem a little outdated now though, and if I can stay current that'd be cool. But I look at the benchmarks and the i3-2120 beats it in gaming almost every time, AT stock. so then I wonder if I should just get the i3 for now, and have the upgrade path open a little later for Ivy once I have more money and any kinks are worked out. See, this is where my indecisiveness has come into play!

Another thing, Ive been playing some of my games on this laptop's integrated gpu, which is an ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3470. DDR3 RAM 512 mb. Maybe if I went the more expensive i5 route or even Ivy bridge the integrated graphics on that could handle Crimecraft or something like that and hold me off another month til I get a good dedicated gpu. Is this even an option? I dont even own Skyrim on PC or ME3, or Diablo 3 so I could hang off playing some low rez games for about a month or couple weeks.

GPU-wise Ive been thinking I should go with the Radeon 6870. Seems like my best bet, I'd like something with (G)DDR5 memory with atleast 1gb memory, and I see a lot of 192-bit in my price range but 256(?) is better, correct? Sorry if any specs are wrong on anything Im labeling, it's late and I dont have time to reference my in-process of learning information. Please bare with me :ange: I see the 550 ti's, but then I see the 560 ti's which are a little more unaffordable but would rather get one of those so I dont have to upgrade as quickly. I'd like to be able to handle upcoming GW2, Secret World, maybe even finally check out Diablo III, and BF3. FPS's (shooters) need a more consistent frame-rate, which I'll be playing. Also there's the gtx 400 series. Im thinking 6870 is what you guys might say?

One more thing, Im thinking I can use one of my old computer shells for now til I have enough for a nice computer case with good fans, room and ventilation. I see a couple good deals on computer shells included with PSU's on newegg, but I hear bad reviews on the PSU's for the most part. Plus that's something I can use from my old pc's for now until I have more of a budget later. Operating system is gonna cut into my cost..on craigslist in my area someone is selling Windows 7 cd supposedly still sealed for $50, is it a good idea for me to pick that up? I see some decent builds on craigslist with the OS already on and a good case and eveything, there's just always something on there that I DONT want. Like the cpu will be an Athlon II, or everything is good cept theres no graphics card and it's already $500 for the pc, or it has an older 9800 GTX (or is is GTS?) If there's any deals Im wondering if it's alright I can post for you guys to let me know if I should go with it or not, Im just also now thinking new products will last me longer than used whatever people are selling on craigslist. Should I go the pre-build craigslist route? It does sound fun building my own PC and its more designed for me, but the OS and whatnot seem to be pushing my budget if it's not included.

So, there we have it. sorry if this is a little long. Its just been running through my mind these last couple weeks and I dont know what to do. Im just now learning about everything, and Im plagued with indecisiveness, and its getting really hard. Esp. for the cpu (processor) and identifying old pc parts to re-use, if any, for now atleast. Also RAM seems very cheap these days, Id like to pick up on atleast 4gb DDR3 if not 8 GB, and upgrade to 16 later. So, there we have it. Critique my over-lengthy indecisive options, tell me what a noobie like me should do to be able to play some games FINALLY for the first time in my life with decent quality, zero lag, and recent games. On top of surfing the web and other things, Im a big computer user :D Just always been short on money and finally saved up some. Thanks and hope to hear from you guys soon! Im really excited to finally get an informative opinion on what I should do.
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  1. Haha, it's alright dude, I can appreciate a long question(s), but you probably won't get as many replies when they're that long. Anyway, here's some thoughts...

    Parts from old PCs: Yes the PSU will say the wattage on the side, but most factory built PCs won't have very good ones in them. So I wouldn't rely on reusing one of them. Depending on how old the PCs are, you might be able to salvage some DDR3 RAM, and some case fans for cooling, and an HDD or two, but other than that there's not much you can get. Most pre-built PCs use mobos and PSUs that are made for the case they're in, so they'll be weird non-standard sizes. They also will likely be older sockets (which you tell by what CPU is in it or, if necessary, the model number which will be randomly printed on the motherboard somewhere) since they're older, so the best you could hope for would most likely be an AM3 motherboard.

    CPU: Yeah, if you're starting from scratch, it sure is hard to say no to an Intel based build. Rule of thumb is that a Phenom II X4 955 is roughly equal to an i3-2100 at stock clocks. On the other hand, most games are GPU limited rather than CPU limited, but some newer games can utilize 4 threads or more, so whatever CPU you get, make sure it is a quad (e.g. Phenom II X4 or i5) or has hyper-threading (core i3). As for WHICH intel CPU, at this point in time, I'd go with the i5-2500k for futureproofing. Think of it this way...if you get the i3-2100 now, and you want more power later, you'd be paying another 150 dollars at least to get another CPU that's a true step up in the LGA1155 line. If you get an i5-2500k, it will be very powerful now at stock, and if you want more power later, you can OC it and it will give you more power in the future. See what i mean? It's more expensive now, but will save you money in the long run. Of course, I have an older AM3 system with a Phenom ii x4 in it and it's good enough for me at 720p, but it's at it's limits.

    GPU: DON'T rely on integrated graphics, you won't be happy with it. You could manage with it for the short term, yes, but not the long term. I have an HD 6870 paired with my Phenom ii x4 and it does really well with almost any game at High/ultra settings at 720p. 1080p and it struggles a fair bit at higher settings in games like BF3 and Crysis 2. But, since you have a CRT monitor, the resolution won't be 1080p, I think it will be 1280x1024 or something like that, so something like a 6850 will be enough for you to ensure you can play any game at Ultra settings for at least the next year. With a $500 budget, in my opinion, you'll probably want a single card. An HD 6950 would be nice for 1080p gaming, but an HD 6770 or GTX 550ti would be plenty for the monitor you're using. But then that brings up the problem of a getting a PSU that will be able to handle this. If you stick with a single 6850, you can get a PSU like mine (Antec Earthwatts 430W), which is a beast in my opinion. GPU selection depends a lot on the monitor you'll be using. Since you have a CRT, you can use a lot lower power GPU to get good graphics settings.

    OS: I'm always wary of Windows CDs that aren't straight from Microsoft. If something isn't completely legit, Microsoft, supposedly, can find out and deactivate it at any time. I could be wrong, but that's what I've heard.

    Craigslist: Perhaps. But you'll never know the quality of the parts they used, what settings they have already set up, how hard they've pushed their components, etc. My friend bought one on craigslist not long ago and I had a tough time resetting the weird settings that were on the PC and just tuning it up (it didn't have any antivirus, the back panel audio jumpers were off, it needed new thermal paste on the CPU heatsink, it needed a new GPU, etc). I finally got it figured out, but it was a hassle that, not that i'm an expert or anything, a lot of first timers wouldn't know how to fix.

    Another thought....what would you think about waiting for Trinity to come out? just something to look into perhaps since you won't be gaming at a high resolution. Might save you some money, but I can't honestly say i'm on board exactly with Llano/Trinity. Just not my thing.

    If you have any other questions feel free to ask and i'll try to get back to you. Like I said, i'm not an expert, just giving some food for thought.
  2. usually just saying, crt monitors generally run a something like 480p if it is pretty old. with 480p, you can run most games at medium or high with intergrated stuff
  3. TheBigTroll said:
    usually just saying, crt monitors generally run a something like 480p if it is pretty old. with 480p, you can run most games at medium or high with intergrated stuff

    That's just CRT TVs, right? I mean my old computer monitors ran at 1024x768 or something like that.
  4. Thanks for the replies. Im glad to know phenom II x4's run so well even with 6870 at high/ultra on modern games at 780p. didnt think that setup could do that, well actually after reading last night it seems that setup is really good. Hmm well if 480p is kinda poor graphics I'd like to upgrade to a nice LCD sometime in the future. So Id like something I wouldnt need to upgrade. Isnt Trinity for laptops? Hmm I was thinking about getting the Phenom last night and spending more money in the gpu section, like getting a gtx 560. but if you are handling ultra at modern games with a phenom and 6870 at 780p, then is a gtx 560 overkill? If my Trinitron CRT monitor is that poor ill upgrade at some point pretty soon. The one thing holding me back from going Phenom II is that it seems Intel will leave me open for abetter upgrade path later if I go with the i3-2120. It just seems if I have a quad core Phenom it will stay cooler with the extra 2 cores. So glad to hear though that a 6870 and Phenom II is high/ultra at 780p, Im sure I'll be so shocked at the difference. Yes maybe Ill be able to get an HDD out of one of my old computers, for now atleast till I can get a 7200 rpm one cuz I doubt the one Ill pull out will be that. hmm so is it really true the i3-2120 beats a Phenom II 965 BE at gaming? Even if the Phenom is overclocked? It seems the extra 2 cores would help, along with being able to OC it and stay cooler. I just looked at Tribes Ascend and I'd love to be able to play that at max. Are more games becoming more and more CPU dependent? Should I spend the extra on a GPU, or CPU? Which would matter more in a game? I hear GPU, but I like playing MMO's and it seems a massive multiplayer game would also be on the CPU side, or atleast 50/50 with the gpu..

    Edit: also, is there like a resolution to p conversation rate? 780p would be like what resolution? Or are they two different things, like I think, but are related?
  5. Augray37 said:
    That's just CRT TVs, right? I mean my old computer monitors ran at 1024x768 or something like that.

    ok then. i was kinda referencing to my 15 yr old crt tv (it weighs like 400 pounds damit!)
  6. I have no idea what resolution the Trinitron monitor is. could be 1024x768, could be 1600x1200, or anywhere in between

    that said, I wouldn't trust the old dell/gateway PSUs, they tend ti skimp on them, and they are old anyway.

    my $500 suggestion:

    i3-2100: $120
    ASRock H61M/U3S3: $67
    8 GB DDR3-1333: $39
    WD 500 GB HDD: $65
    XFX 7770: $130
    Corsair CX 430: $45
    DVD: $18
    Rosewill R218 case: $30

  7. Also, 256-bit gpu is better than a 192-bit, correct? Like it delivers memory faster? or 128-bit?
  8. sure i guess....
  9. Okay. Thanks for the build recommendation. I appreciate it. Im still stuck on going AMD or Intel. It seems AMD has better deals and will be good enough for me, just would like a better upgrade path. I dunno, just after having dual cores for so long it'd be nice to get a quad core cpu instead of the i3. Will CPU intensive games run better on a quad AMD than an i3? Phenom II x4 965 or FX-4100? Also, Ive been considering a 560 gtx

    EVGA SuperClocked 01G-P3-1461-KR GeForce GTX 560 (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
    good, right?
    also newegg is having a sale. Look:
    Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 16GB (2 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Desktop Memory Model 997018

    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM

    EVGA 015-P3-1480-KR GeForce GTX 480 (Fermi) 1536MB 384-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

    I almost want (wish) I could splurge on the gtx 480! That's a very good deal, is it not? it would be a hell of a gpu, and if Im considering a $179-189 card, then why not the extra $20? But idk a good processor would effect my computer as a whole and everything else, though Id mostly like to use it for gaming.
    I basically listed them in order of of performance, correct? with the 6870 right under the 560, and then the 480?
  10. a 6870 performs beter than a 560

    you wont need 16gb of ram. 8gb is more than enough for most people

    the 480 perfoms like a 570 but uses a lot of power.

    i would get the phenom since it performs the same as the i3 in games and can multitask a bit better since it is quad core
  11. and an Hd 7850 performs like a 570 or 480 with even less power use. but all of them are way, way, out of the range of a $500 build!
  12. Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K

    keeps drawing my eye! You see, I am on a budget build, but I plan on upgrading, and would like to secure a good system for the next couple years without spending too much. It seems with the Phenom II and a 6870 ( I read benchmarks alll night long along with debates on forums, it seems 6870 is best bang for my buck) will destroy everything I throw at it right now. Just feels like the Phenom will start getting outdated eventually, and Id have to get a new mobo on top of that. Ivy Bridge is at the top of the line right now, and I hear I can play max settings, esp. on my CRT monitor on Steam games with the Intel HD 4000 integrated graphics. Then Ill have pci-e 3.0 support as well as a beast cpu, and I can hold off a month to get a gpu. Will using the onboard graphics of the i5-3570k for Unreal Engine 3 (crimecraft, possibly tribes acend) stress it too much? I see the 7770 which supports pci-e 3.0 but hear it doesnt help much right now, but its at a cheap price. Plus for $20 more I can get a 2 gb 7770 (159.99)

    does that sound like a viable plan?

    Would most games benefit more from a Phenom II x4 Be with a 6870 or maybe a 560..or an Intel IB i5-3570k with a radeon 7770? Or just save a bit more for the 6870 once I can afford it. I just dont know how many games Ill be playing that need the extra cpu power, but id really like to secure a good system for a good couple years. i could go with the i3-2120 for now with the gpu, but it just seems like a better planning of money to hold off with the Intel HD 4000 graphics for about a month so i dont have respend money on another proc. Is that a viable option and wont fry my integrated graphics? I just want to be able to play some games after I drop $500 and see nice performance, but waiting seems to be better budget wise.

    So again, jsut incase, i5-3570k with a little lower end gpu or i3-2120 with a bit higher end would be better? just incase and just to know, but Id prolly just hold out with HD 4000 if I can. Its $240 right now for the Ivy proc.

    Thanks for all the help so far
  13. just stick with the hd4000 graphics on the i5 3570k. if you can, you can proabbly wait for the ivy bridge i3s that will come out later on in the summer.

    dont get a 2gb ersion of he 7770. 1gb is more than enough. just get a 6870 ince it is pretty much the best bang for the buck now
  14. Yeah I was thinking about waiting for the i3 Ivy's, but I need to play some games now :( its been awhile with this shitty laptop. So from the benchmarks Ive read
    Thats the end review, plus theres benches on the earlier pages, with my CRT monitor for now, and low to medium settings on the NEWEST games, and I read I can get 70+ fps in Team fortress at high with HD 4000, I should just buy the new Ivy Bridge and use the integrated graphics til I save enough for a 6870? That sounds good right, with me then having a great pc with only a little room for gpu improvement, which I WONT need for awhile cuz I doubt Ill be playing at 1080p, most like 780p. eventually Ill get a nice HDTV to set up on though.

    Newegg has the i5-3570k for $240 which is a bit much, but over at Microcenter its $189 which would be perfect.

    I dont have a microcenter in my state though! And its only for pick-up. Would fry's electronics price match Micro centers price? If i could get a ivy bridge with hd 4000 graphics I read about for $189 Id be a happy camper!

    and thanks for the heads up being 1 gb is more than enough. If you dont mind me asking, what is your set up? Do you game and what kinda fps do you get if so?

    but yeah I read some nice reviews on the 6870 as well. Ahhh ive spent countless hours tonight, stayed up all night reading benchmarks and the like. Spent too many nights doing this, haha. just wanna make a good decision, and honestly have a beast system thatll amaze me after all these years of *** comps haha.
  15. Best answer
    k just stick with the i5 3570k, wait for some more money and then install the 6870 or something along the lines. since you can overclock the i5 3570k and the hd4000 graphiics, it will last you quite some time before upgrades.

    here is a good mobo

    it is only 134.99 and has every feature that you will need. just add a power supply, some ram, hard driive, and a case
  16. +1 TheBigTroll on sticking with i5-3570k and getting a 6870 later.
  17. hmm yeah that seems like the best bet then. Ahh it'll be nice to have the new i5 ivy bridge with the unlocked multiplier! I just wish I could find it for Microcenters price at $189 instead of $240 normally. SO HD graphics 4000 though WILL suffice for now from what I read. anyone have any experience with it? I saw the Twin Frozr III 6870's which seem really nice and dual fans which will help it stay cool. I dont think it wil take me too much longer to save up for the 6870, anways. Itll be worth it with a great proc and being at the newest product line.

    Hmm bigtroll that link seems to go to newegg's radeon 7750. Were you thinking a z77 mobo? What would be a good deal for one, trying not to spend too much over $100 but be feature rich, it seems you found a good price, just it was a gpu at the link :p
  18. this is a good board for the i5-3570k, right? 4 slots of mem, 1600 ram w/o OC, USB 3, Pci-e 3.0, easy overclock, seems nice and at a good price!

    Edit: Then I see this:
    A mobo thats feature rich for my needs (it seems atleast!) and then realize it is the same motherboard I listed earlier, except it is a micro-ATX board versus the other one just being ATX. Is this difference between the two just the size of the motherboard? something to look for in cases? or does it actually change some of the specs of the mobo?
    Someone please enlighten me if you can! and also let me know how this mobo looks, I like the features.
  19. well the pro4 also works since you wont be using sli
  20. Yeah well like I said those are both the same exact mobo (lol those ARE the pro4 boards if you looked) cept one is Micro ATX and the other is just ATX. If I may ask again, Is the only difference in physical size between atx and micro atx?

    And check out this deal:

    Its a 650w 80 plus bronze modular PSU with a 60gb SSD combo deal for $130! I think theres also a $30 mail-in rebate, though those seem a little shoddy. But yeah both the PSU and SSD card seem to get good reviews. WIll this PSU work for me??
    I may just go on this, salvage one of my old 80gb hard drives from my dell optiplex and save on a hard drive for now, I REALLY wanted to get an SSD but I felt it wasnt in my budget, with this combo deal it just may be.

    I also have $700+ now and am wiling to spend it, actually I tihnk im on the $800 line but dont want to push it past that, FOR NOW, but with a good upgrad epath open if need be. I think IM going to Fry's Electronics tomorrow and picking up on most of these parts. DO you know if they'll price match Micro center's in store price?

    ONe more question, I wont have the money for an OS to start out with it seems. $100 for a freaking OEM version, like $180 for full home. freaking ridiculous. Can anyone recommend a free OS thatll work for now? I heard about Ubunto.. is like steam supported there? Would Linux work??
  21. there is very limited game support for Linux.
  22. first of all, the ocz zt is very loud and the agility 3 fails a lot.

    yeah sorry for the link. i was recommending something else earlier on to someone else

    just go with the plan of getting a i5 3570k, getting the pro4 board and the ram and stuff. later on when you have the cash, get a 6870 or a 7850

    a free os that works is linux, but then you will have to get windows later on.
  23. Im not sure, but i think on ubuntu you can get this thing called Wine, which i think is a windows emulator. This allows you download steam games, but im not sure on the stability of any of this, and will most likely just be a pain in the backside.

    Its all free so you can give it a try if you want, since you are also delaying the purchase of a graphics card. But you should try and squeeze windows in if possible...
  24. ahh thanks for the heads up about wine.

    really youve heard of the agility 3 failing?

    alright hmm which psu would you recommend? How many watts (plus Amps on the 12 v rail) would I need to support my i5 3570k + a 6870 later on?.. or yeah even a 7850.
  25. doesnt really matter how many amps. as long as the power supply is from a reliable company such as seasonic, corsair, antec, xfx etc, they will always have neough amps. for you system, get a 650w power supply if you plan to crossfire 7850 and i5 3570k. for he 6870, get a 750w for crossfire. the system will run fine on a 550w if you plan to just leave things at stock

    my friend's brother had the agility 3 120 and 240gb fail on him
  26. alright cool thanks for the info. Im about to go to fry's electronics and possibly best buy today! Im so excited to get pieces for my build :D I know newegg has some good deals but Id like to get everything today..We'll see how it goes. I just wish I had a printer to print some stuff out for reference and price-match. We'll see if Fry's Electronics with the i5 3570k at $230 will price match Micro Center's $180 price tag..even though its in a different state. I heard they price match online prices now too, which would be able to get me neweggs deals as well

    thats funny i cant seem to find the watts needed for a gpu on newegg anywhere anymore, i thought it was in the details section?
  27. just go on wikipedia to find out :P i checked the article and it didnt seem to have any mistakes
  28. haha true :p thanks.

    so...I GOT MOST OF MY STUFF! Went to fry's electronics yesterday, got the i5-3570k (please convince me it was worth it :P), 8gb of 1866 mhz ram, (mobo supports 1600, but doesnt it tighten up CAS timings if its over?), its 9-9-9-27 1.5v crucial, got a raidmax blackstorm case, it included a 500w PSU, and I got an asus p8 h77-m pro board. Looking at all the z77, i liked the features on this one but didnt realize it was a h instead of a z until after checkout. I need overclocking, or the potential too atleast as I paid more for a k processor. Gonna have to return it today, probably going to order the pro 4 off newegg as originally planned, just dont wanna wait anymore D:
    Over all, I spent $550. still need an OS, HDD, and GPU. almost bought an SSD heh. then realized id rather save that money for a graphics card. does anyone know if i open up the mobo box will they stilll give me cash back? I want to see if the powersupply works with my case. The shell comes with 2 fans, and hatches on both side of the case I just pull on to open it up. I like the case, looks large enough, just hope the PSU will do for now.

    RAM: ( everyones able to tighten up timing t 8-8-8-24 no problem, so im happy with it, good reviews)

    Shell w/PSU: (mine was $100 w/ PSU vs $70 on newegg, got $20 rebate though)


    Mobo: (want z77 though)

    good setup so far? very happy with ivy bridge, but i really need OS, hard drive, gpu, and PSU eventually. hopin this one will do for now though just powering processor. well back to frys, if someone doesnt mind rating my stuff thatd be cool.
  29. dont get the h77. it wont let you overclock. just pick up the asrock extreme4 mobo
  30. lol i get the feeling you just breeze through my posts I said I already bought the h77 accidently at frys but taking it up there right now to exchange or return for a z77. oddlyenough they dont supply asrock at frys, so i may just wait for a newegg order, or am contemplating on getting something with 2 pci-e 3.0 slots incase I ever do crossfire with the newer cards in the future. I am looking for Lucid Virtu MVP with my mobo though, would like digi and usb 3 boost, possibly wifi go..
  31. asus usually rips you off for stuff that you can get for cheaper. if you are to crossfire, get the pro4 board. if you want SLI, get the extreme4 board. yes i did breeze through your post since i was kinda busy doing some homework
  32. the raidmax PSU will probly work, but they are very low quality. you will want to replace it soon
  33. okay thanks, yeah I plan on upgrading the psu once I get the gpu or so.. hey thats a good deal on that psu, I know i should get 600w to be safe but 520w should do it, eh? I like the 80 plus bronze atleast to at a $59 price tag
  34. 520w is enough for a single graphics card system. since the m12II is a high quality unit, it will run very good
  35. thanks for that recommendation Ill definitely be buying that PSU. I needed something high quality that wouldnt push my budget too much more..Im ordering the mobo off newegg today. im getting worried because im eating up my time on my 15 day warranty for my cpu and ram from frys and I want to run everything and stress it to make sure its all in working order. I wish i knew somewhere I could just get the pro4 board today..also still considering the ASUS P8Z77-V LK as its only $10 more on newegg right now..

    do you know how well neweggs open-box hardware and policy is? theres the asus p8z77-v PRO board right now for $169 open-box, vs the normal $210. if itll be in good condition thatd be a nice price for the pro board with built in wifi as well..

    edit: ahhh screw open-box actually..not worth the trouble.. hmm the only reason Im still debating these 2 motherboards is because honestly, I like Asus' color scheme more, the blue and white vs the all black of asrock's. but asrock has all gold caps (good right? haha is that for conducting..or?) and 8+2 digi which I dont fully understand...The only other thing that asus has which is better is a pci-e 2.0 slot, which I think asrock only has 2 pci-e 3.0 slots without a pci-e 2 slot. though asus's board says the pci-e 2 slot runs at x4. what does that mean? way slower than x16, correct? is that even worth it? is asrock's $10 cheaper board better with the features? (asrock z77 extreme4) (asus p8z77-v LK)

    votes? haha
  36. open box stuff is like a lottery. sometimes you get an unopened box that was just returned and sometimes, all the packaging is removed
  37. yeah, im afraid it wont come with accessories, it was returned for a reason, etc. guess its not worth the gamble id say..

    oh yeah and the asus board has the gpu boost switches, memOK button, and epu switches built into the mobo which I like..ahh i just want a mobo now :( thinkin about ordering the seagate barracuda 2tb HDD off amazon for $110, I think ive seen it score almost top on benchmarks Ive read..
  38. edited my post before sayin the differences between asrock's and asus' mobo which I cant decide on before you replied bigtroll..havent a tough time :/ haha. is newegg's 2-day shipping really 2 days?
  39. its more like 3-5 since they have to process it and that takes a day or 2
  40. ahh bummer :( hwelll after all this time think I am goin with the extreme4 anyway, shouldve just ordered it 2 days ago when I returned my h77 board. ahh just seein if I have enough for a HDD as well. plus no OS, with a stock psu, this is gettin crazy lol. just cant wait til my pc is up n runnin
  41. yeah well since I finally found the search feature in newegg's combo deals, I decided Im just returning my i5-3570k to fry's along with possibly my case and RAM and ordering everything off newegg. For example, they have the i5-3570k for same price (229.99 finally on newegg) plus the extreme4 board, for $15 normal price. or I could get the Asus PRO board for $25, maybe $30 off, basically spending the same I wouldve ordering the extreme4 now. So Im just gonna rebuy everything in combo deals and save a lot more money. probably cpu+mobo, ram+hdd, case+psu, or whichever order has the best deal. So far it seems like I can almost find everything I want in combination with another product I want, at a $10-$25 discount.
  42. you have found the true secrets of newegg :)
  43. haha hell yes :) Now i just gonna have to wait which is a bummer, and hope everything ships in good condition. But yeah Im trying to find the best combination deals, but so mcuh better saving $20-$50 off every 2 item combo.
    The one thing I am thinking about keeping from frys though is my crucial ballistix tactical 1866 ram, I got it for 39.99 at frys and on newegg its $59.99, has all good reviews as well. just need to make sure its "compatible" with my mobo, which Im sure it will be.
    Ahhh I cant wait.
  44. I have a quick couple hard drive questions. Seagate barracuda, good enough hard drive? also, does a bare hard drive NOT come with sata connectors? whats the difference between that, and a retail kit?
    also, what is NCQ? these seem like a great deal, 2 TB, SATA III, 64 mb cache, everything else I find has like a 32MB cache and 1 TB for same price, and I originally found these because I remember them scoring high on a benchmark test. Is that correct? (wtf in the 2nd technical details it says its actually only SATA II, 3gb/sec, and 32MB cache. so nvm, but how do I know what to believe?)
  45. bare drives come with just that: a bare drive.

    most motherboards come with 2-4 SATA cables though
  46. alright good to know thanks. It seems less WD's come DOA, but I can get a seagate 2TB for the same price as 1TB WD..
  47. hows thiis combo?

    the case looks nice, is the PSU good as well? its 80 plus bronze, 750 w
  48. the psu is pretty good quality so i would go with that combo
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