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My first build, suggestions?

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June 12, 2012 5:31:34 PM

Hello, everyone. I am currently working on a (budget) gaming computer.
But budget is anywhere between 500-650$. Below are the parts I have in mind.

I already have the following:
+ Windows 7 Ultimate
+ Keyboards, mouse, monitor
+ Sony DVD/CD RW disc bay
+ Speakers

What I am looking at buying:
+ Antec Three Hundred Illusion Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
+ Western Digital AV-GP WD3200AUDX 320GB IntelliPower SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
+ ASUS M5A97 EVO AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
+ SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6870 video card
+ Thermaltake TR2 W0070RUC 430W ATX12V V2.2 Intel Core i7 Compliant Dual 80mm Fans Full Cable Sleevings Power Supply
+ CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) ram
+ AMD FX-4100 Zambezi 3.6GHz (3.8GHz Turbo)

I'd appreciate any suggestions or tips.

More about : build suggestions

a c 78 B Homebuilt system
June 12, 2012 5:43:46 PM

A couple things...

The FX 4100 chip isn't guaranteed to work with an AM3+ board out of the box. If you get this chip you run a risk of it not working till a BIOS update is performed. For that you would need a second processor that is compatible right out of the box.

If you want to avoid that sort of problem, a Phenom 2 x4 965 Black is basically just as good and it costs pretty much the same and there are never compatibility problems using it on an AM3 board.

Number 2, Corsair XMS3 RAM has among the highest failure rates for all brands sold. I would highly suggest you get RAM with the part number CT51264BA1339 instead. If you decide later you want to go up to 8 GBs, then get another of that exact same thing.

1x 4GBs is preferable over 2x 2GBs because eventually most people will probably want to be at 8 GBs and 2x 4GBs is very advantageous over 4x 2GBs. Getting 2x 2GBs just means you need to trash both and get 2x 4GBs to make 8 later. The other way is possible, but much more likely to cause problems in every way.

Also, the PSU is just not going to work. Thermaltake is a horrible brand and if I were you I would not trust your computer to it.

If you had to get a new heart and you had a choice between one taken from someone that just had a heart attack or someone that ate right and exercized the choice would be obvious. The PSU is like the computer's heart. It powers everything.

I would strongly consider something like an XFX 550w instead. All XFX models are the best of the best performance wise.

You can get something else if you want, but 95% of the models out there are lemons and it requires a lot of research to make sure you aren't getting one.

With XFX, though, its simple because there are zero lemons in the lineup.

Lastly, if you click the link in my signature, it shows pretty much the sort of computer that people here would suggest you make if you have the same sort of budget. The Intel setup listed there would probably do better for gaming than the AMD setup you chose for pretty much the same price.
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June 12, 2012 5:45:49 PM

Thank you. I greatly appreciate your thoughts.

Best of luck to you.
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a b B Homebuilt system
June 12, 2012 6:10:22 PM

first up, a 970 motherboard will work just fine with a 4100.

that said, I wouldn't use a 4100 in the first place.

for the $225 you are putting into mobo + CPU, you'll get better performance out of a H61M/U3S3 ($67) and an i3-2130 ($150)
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June 12, 2012 6:38:41 PM

I have made some modifications based on recommendations and a little more research.

How is this looking:

ASRock H61M/U3S3 ($63)

Intel Core i3-2120 ($125) - is there that much a difference between this and the 2130?

SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6870 ($180)

Crucial 8GB ram (CT2KIT51264BA1339) ($45)

OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W Modular High Performance Power Supply ($50 after rebate) - or should I go with XFX still...? Price and reviews are attractive....



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a c 78 B Homebuilt system
June 12, 2012 6:41:58 PM

I have never seen anyone have a bad XFX PSU and I have seen lots of people have a bad OCZ PSU.

OCZ in general just makes really mediocre stuff.

However, their stuff is pretty cheap for the benefit when it does work.

When I had to make the call for my own PC, I picked XFX.
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June 12, 2012 6:54:00 PM

Thanks. What is an extra $15 when it has a high reliability rate? I will switch them out.
Edit: Thanks Screwy (I think we posted at the same time). Will do further research.

And I have decided on the 2130 as opposed to the 2120.

I appreciate the help.
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a c 78 B Homebuilt system
June 12, 2012 7:01:30 PM

Actually, I think that Channel Well probably builds more Corsair PSUs than Seasonic does.

That being said, I would say that Corsair PSUs are more inexpensive than fantastic.

They usually do good enough, though. Better than 90% of the other brands.
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