Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

$400-450 Gaming PC (Add GPU later, 50"Plasma monitor, upgrade-able)

Last response: in Systems
Share
June 23, 2012 5:28:26 PM

$400-450 Gaming PC (Adding GPU later, 50" Plasma as monitor, upgrading later)

Approximate Purchase Date: July 8

Budget Range: $400-550

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, surfing the web, steaming video

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS, hard drive, monitor, optical drive

I'm planning on using my 50" 1080P plasma or a 1280x1024 old VGA as a monitor and/or buying a monitor in the future, and I also have an external optical drive that I'm wondering if I'd be able to use. Let me know if the TV/monitor or optical drive won't work.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: I'll be driving to a wedding 4 hours away and passing a microcenter on the way, so if I can save money (especially on the CPU, letting me know if buying so far away is a bad idea), I'll shop there. Other than that newegg or any other reputable online dealer works.

Country: US

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU, better CPU than GPU with the plan to upgrade the GPU down the road. Don't care about noisy case, I just want good cooling and one that might last for a couple builds. Decent PSU so I can upgrade down the road.

Overclocking: Maybe, perhaps down the road if I need to get more out of my CPU.

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe, perhaps down the road to keep up with new games.

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 if I it's possible to use my 50" plasma, would the plasma be able to display other resolutions? If that isn't feasible I have a 17" 1280x1024@75Hz monitor that would be a stand in until I can afford a better one, but that is VGA and I don't know if that is an outdated input.

Additional Comments: My biggest goal is longevity. I'd like a computer that can last for a while (6 years or so) through minimal upgrades. (Obviously I don't plan on max settings in 6 years, but low settings and frame rates that are playable).

My thought was go for a better CPU and then upgrade the GPU down the road (or add another card to do crossfire/SLI) because it seems more costly to upgrade both the CPU and MoBo and it seems like the video cards go through greater improvements over time and would be a more beneficial upgrade in the future.

I don't care about how loud the case is, I would like the best cooling/airflow for the lowest price.
I'm thinking mid Tower and ATX since this is my first build and I'd like to have lots of room to work with.

I'm wondering if I'd be able to use the integrated graphics card on the CPU with either the TV or VGA monitor as I'm not sure if the integrated card can handle a 50" TV or can connect to an old VGA monitor.

The price difference in the budget is because I'm wondering if I can use the integrated graphics card for a couple months and put in a GPU after I save up some cash and how hard it would be to do that.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

CPU: Again, My thought was go for a better CPU and then upgrade the GPU down the road (or add another card to do crossfire/SLI) because it seems more costly to upgrade both the CPU and MoBo and it seems like the video cards go through greater improvements over time and would be a more beneficial upgrade in the future.

Core i5 2500K LGA 1155 Boxed Processor $170 @ microcenter
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Intel Core i5 3570K 3.4GHz LGA 1155 Processor $190 @ microcenter (I'm assuming this is overkill/over budget, but I'm looking long term)
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...;

Motherboard: I honestly don't know much about MoBo, other than I need the 1155 socket (Budget $70?)

Microcenter has a $50 discount on any Z77 or Z68 Mobo with the i5 2500K or i5 3570K

Here's the Z68 Mobos - http://www.microcenter.com/search/search_results.phtml?...

Here's the Z77 Mobos - http://www.microcenter.com/search/search_results.phtml?...

Here a link with the promo and some other Mobos http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/0c732362#/0c732362/...

Here's a sample of the boards that are discounted w/ the i5 overclockable CPUs
$85 ASUS P8Z77-V LX Socket 1155 Z77 ATX Intel Motherboard
$90 ASRock Z77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Z77 ATX Intel Motherboard

GPU: I'm not buying a GPU right now so don't add one into your budget, I will in a couple months and I might crossfire in the future for an easy upgrade. I could use a little help on which brands are good and what specs to look for since it seems like there are lots of options and different sales all the time.

Here's an idea of what I might get in a few months

SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity (100315L ) $150 @ newegg (-$15 rebate)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Case: I don't care about noise, I'd like good cooling/airflow and ease of use since it's my first build.

Rosewill CHALLENGER Black Gaming ATX Mid Tower Computer Case, comes with Three Fans-1x Front Blue LED 120mm Fan, 1x Top 140mm Fan, 1x Rear 120mm Fan, option Fans-2x Side 120mm Fan $50 @ newegg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Or

Diablotek EVO Mid Tower ATX Computer Case $40 @ microcenter
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

RAM: I have no idea what I'm doing here, just copy and pasted RAM from the latest system builder, but I was thinking one 4GB stick so I can add another in the future to upgrade to 8GB. I could use a little help on which brands are good and what specs to look for since it seems like there are hundreds of options and different sales all the time.

Team Elite 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Desktop Memory Model TED34096M1333C9DC $21 @ newegg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: I have no idea about Power supply's. I could use a little help on which brands are good and what specs to look for since it seems like there are many options and different sales all the time.
(Budget $60?)

Thanks for any help you can provide.
June 23, 2012 5:54:09 PM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7750 1GB Video Card ($104.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: Corsair 650W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $271.95
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

Then add this:
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Total is around $568, which is $18 over your budget; however, you can cut back on the GPU however you feel is necessary if you simply cannot stretch your budget anymore.
a b 4 Gaming
June 23, 2012 6:42:54 PM

buy the CPU and MB at Microcenter you can't bet their deals any of the cpu's you list would be fine

you didn't list which MC you would pass by so its hard to help you pick the right deals/ some times the have good cpu/mb combos

PSU at MC : ZT Series 750 Watt Modular ATX Power Supply is a good deal at that price.
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.realhardtechx.com/index_archivos/Page1373.ht...

this mobo is good and will set you up for SLI in the future
Z77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Z77
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
Related resources
June 23, 2012 7:08:15 PM

Merueth said:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($46.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7750 1GB Video Card ($104.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: Corsair 650W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $271.95
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

Then add this:
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...

Total is around $568, which is $18 over your budget; however, you can cut back on the GPU however you feel is necessary if you simply cannot stretch your budget anymore.



Is that case best for cooling at this price point? And I would assume there's room for extra if and when I overclock.

I'm wondering if I'd be able to use (internet browsing, light low settings 2 year old games) with that setup without the video card and purchase one a couple months from now.

Will 650w be fine if I want to SLI/Crossfire in the future. It looks like some of the Watt calculators would recommend 700w.
June 23, 2012 7:14:24 PM

The HAF 912 is probably the most spacious and user-friendly case at that price point; it has great airflow though it is slightly worse than the Rosewill case. You can easily remedy that by installing an extra fan, but it's up to you.

You can SLI/Crossfire anything that uses less power than the Radeon 7870 on 650 watts.

Intel HD 4000 is pretty bad; maybe 35 FPS on Minecraft is what you can expect.
June 23, 2012 7:15:22 PM

jerreddredd said:
buy the CPU and MB at Microcenter you can't bet their deals any of the cpu's you list would be fine

you didn't list which MC you would pass by so its hard to help you pick the right deals/ some times the have good cpu/mb combos

PSU at MC : ZT Series 750 Watt Modular ATX Power Supply is a good deal at that price.
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.realhardtechx.com/index_archivos/Page1373.ht...

this mobo is good and will set you up for SLI in the future
Z77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Z77
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...


Either the Northeast Ohio/Mayfield Heights in early July or the Northern Virginia Fairfax in late July (summer weddings)

Basically on the CPU's I'm wondering if the extra $20 for the 3570K is worth it, for longevity's sake/performance.
June 23, 2012 7:26:30 PM

Merueth said:
The HAF 912 is probably the most spacious and user-friendly case at that price point; it has great airflow though it is slightly worse than the Rosewill case. You can easily remedy that by installing an extra fan, but it's up to you.

You can SLI/Crossfire anything that uses less power than the Radeon 7870 on 650 watts.

Intel HD 4000 is pretty bad; maybe 35 FPS on Minecraft is what you can expect.



Well the cheapest HAF 912 case w/ shipping is $55, the Rosewell I posted was $50 shipped. Is the HAF 912 slightly worse only in regards to airflow (because there's one less fan?), or in other ways because shipped the Rosewell is $5 less.

I should say for everyone who's commenting, I'm coming from a 6 year old laptop that has trouble with the internet if i have too many tabs and 5 year old games on low. So I'm content to suffer through integrated graphics for a couple months if it's not too hard to install a GPU into a system that's already running. (I guess I should mention this is my first build, but I have knowledgeable friends to help)

Basically I would like to play Far Cry 2, Medieval Total War, Empire Total War, Napoleon Total, on low settings and some older strategy games that never ran too well on my laptop. Then upgrade when I can afford it. Plus I'd like to supplement my lack of cable by hooking a computer up to my 50" plasma and stream some stuff. Let me know about that practicality of that.
June 23, 2012 7:29:00 PM

demonflame5 said:
If you're not planning on upgrading, I recommend this build:
http://www.budgetbuildpc.com/june-2012-500-build/


Sorry, but I am most definitely planning on upgrading, mainly GPUs, but it'd be nice to use the case and maybe power supply in a future build so I'm looking for higher quality in those parts. Plus I'm looking to have overclock abilities with an Intel quad core.
June 23, 2012 7:45:24 PM

This is my build I made for my mate which works out $500 without a graphics card. Why bother with Intel's over priced bull

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-970A-DS3 £55
CPU: Amd fx 4100 £80
GPU: Asus Radeon HD 6850 £89
RAM: Corsair 2x2 1133 £22
HDD: WD Blue 1tb £50
PSU: Powercool 650 80+ £40
Case:Fractal Design Core 1K £30

Total: £377 = 587.611 USD
a b 4 Gaming
June 23, 2012 7:45:35 PM

Smithistory said:
Either the Northeast Ohio/Mayfield Heights in early July or the Northern Virginia Fairfax in late July (summer weddings)

Basically on the CPU's I'm wondering if the extra $20 for the 3570K is worth it, for longevity's sake/performance.


the i5 2500K over clocks better and cooler, so I would say it's not worth the $20

this is what I would do on a $550 budget.
Quote:
Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, speakers, OS, hard drive, monitor, optical drive


the HD 7770 is overclock and is really a screaming card. if you need more GPU you can always CF another one, the PSU i put in can handle it and the i5 OCing too.

MB/CPU from MC

http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
$140
Core i5 2500K
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
$169
Microcenter has a $50 discount on any Z77 or Z68 Mobo with the i5 2500K
----------
309-50= $259

Better case $40 free shipping
NZXT Source 210
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ram $30 free shipping
CORSAIR Vengeance 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU $150 good little budget gaming card ($15 MIR)free shipping
SAPPHIRE Vapor-X 100358VXL Radeon HD 7770
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU 750W - Buy now $94.95 - $15 MIR = $79.99 (MIR Expires on 6/27/12)free shipping
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
---
$575

$545 after MIR's
June 23, 2012 7:45:57 PM

Merueth said:
Ok, then go with the Rosewill.

Here is a basic GPU to consider. It should play the games you listed fairly well, so I would recommend it as it is $50 cheaper than the 7750.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



Sorry, I wasn't really clear on what you were saying about the cases. At this point I'm assuming you're saying the Rosewell is slightly better because of the 3rd fan, but they're equal in all other things.

I plan on spending about $150 on the GPU, but that's in a few months when I save up some cash, but I appreciate your advice.
a b 4 Gaming
a b C Monitor
June 23, 2012 7:47:57 PM

jerreddredd said:
the i5 2500K over clocks better and cooler, so I would say it's not worth the $20

this is what I would do on a $550 budget. the HD 7770 is overclock and is really a screaming card. if you need more GPU you can always CF another one, the PSU i put in can handle it and the i5 OCing too.

MB/CPU from MC

http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
$140
Core i5 2500K
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml...
$169
Microcenter has a $50 discount on any Z77 or Z68 Mobo with the i5 2500K
----------
309-50= $259

Better case $40 free shipping
NZXT Source 210
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Ram $30 free shipping
CORSAIR Vengeance 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU $150 good little budget gaming card ($15 MIR)free shipping
SAPPHIRE Vapor-X 100358VXL Radeon HD 7770
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU 750W - Buy now $94.95 - $15 MIR = $79.99 (MIR Expires on 6/27/12)free shipping
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
---
$575

$545 after MIR's
Wrong. IB may run a bit hotter, but not at 4.2 GHz. 4.2 GHz IB = 4.5 GHz SB btw.
June 23, 2012 7:50:40 PM

I don't think Intel's IGP is getting enough credit here (especially for a short-term solution). Yes, Intel HD3k/4k flops on Minecraft (I get about 25fps on HD3k on a mobile i5), but I can get playable framerates (30fps, give or take 5) on low settings in most modern games. L4D2, GW2 (runs well on medium), TF2 (also on medium), SMNC, etc. HD4k is significantly better (as well as being attached to a much more powerful/higher binned chip than mine), so I think he'll be fine until he can get a discrete GPU.

That said, what I'd do is:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($121.50 @ Newegg)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $511.46
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

Things to note:
Again, pick up the CPU/Mobo at Microcenter. If you want, you may be able to upgrade the case to a HAF922 ($50 more-ish). Alternatively, you could buy some really nice fans for the 912. The motherboard supports Crossfire and SLI, as well as PCIe 3.0 (for long-lasting video card compatibility). The power supply is a rebranded Seasonic PSU - highly efficient, highly reliable, and semi-modular. I didn't include a GPU, because you'll be able to rely on Intel HD4000 until then.
a b 4 Gaming
June 23, 2012 7:54:48 PM

azeem40 said:
Wrong. IB may run a bit hotter, but not at 4.2 GHz. 4.2 GHz IB = 4.5 GHz SB btw.

Please show me this. I all the BM I've seen shows them about even in Gaming. I would like to see thing that is definitive.
June 23, 2012 8:11:11 PM

mousseng said:
I don't think Intel's IGP is getting enough credit here (especially for a short-term solution). Yes, Intel HD3k/4k flops on Minecraft (I get about 25fps on HD3k on a mobile i5), but I can get playable framerates (30fps, give or take 5) on low settings in most modern games. L4D2, GW2 (runs well on medium), TF2 (also on medium), SMNC, etc. HD4k is significantly better (as well as being attached to a much more powerful/higher binned chip than mine), so I think he'll be fine until he can get a discrete GPU.

That said, what I'd do is:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($121.50 @ Newegg)
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: Corsair 750W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $511.46
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

Things to note:
Again, pick up the CPU/Mobo at Microcenter. If you want, you may be able to upgrade the case to a HAF922 ($50 more-ish). Alternatively, you could buy some really nice fans for the 912. The motherboard supports Crossfire and SLI, as well as PCIe 3.0 (for long-lasting video card compatibility). The power supply is a rebranded Seasonic PSU - highly efficient, highly reliable, and semi-modular. I didn't include a GPU, because you'll be able to rely on Intel HD4000 until then.


Thank you for your reply, I really appreciate the explanations as I am a novice at this and I'm trying to learn "the why" and not just "what."

The total would be even cheaper because Microcenter offers a discount on the CPU/Mobo combo, $280 before tax, $300 after.

Do you have to get RAM in pairs, or could I buy one stick of 4GB now and another stick of 4GB in a few months?

I take it that you're a vote for the HAF 912 over the Rosewell Challenger. I'm not sure I want to be spending $50 more on a case (for the HAF 922), doesn't seem to work out in the bang-for-buck.
June 23, 2012 8:31:45 PM

Smithistory said:
Do you have to get RAM in pairs, or could I buy one stick of 4GB now and another stick of 4GB in a few months?

You can do that, but it's typically recommended to get them in pairs - plus, memory is really cheap, there's not much reason to skimp.

Quote:
I take it that you're a vote for the HAF 912 over the Rosewell Challenger. I'm not sure I want to be spending $50 more on a case (for the HAF 922), doesn't seem to work out in the bang-for-buck.

Yes for the HAF912 - you're right about bang:buck as well. In terms of thermal and acoustic performance, there's a very steep level of diminishing returns.
June 24, 2012 10:22:06 PM

Just wondering if anybody knows if the integrated graphics would be able to handle my 50" plasma for either low setting games or playing video(netflix, abc.com, etc.) online.

Also will I be able to use an external optical drive to install windows?

Will I have any issues installing a GPU on a system I'm using? Will I need to reformat, reactivate windows, etc.?
a b 4 Gaming
June 25, 2012 7:23:59 AM

Smithistory said:
Just wondering if anybody knows if the integrated graphics would be able to handle my 50" plasma for either low setting games or playing video(netflix, abc.com, etc.) online.

Also will I be able to use an external optical drive to install windows?

Will I have any issues installing a GPU on a system I'm using? Will I need to reformat, reactivate windows, etc.?


HD 3000 2500K) and HD 4000 (3570K) Benchmarks. Games No. HD vid and web surfing yes.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/core-i5-3570-low-po...

yes on optical as long as you set it up in the BIOS

yes to re-activate Window (assumes Win 7)



!