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$450-$500 Gaming PC (Integrated Graphics/Upgradable)

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July 8, 2012 12:26:58 AM


$450-$500 Gaming PC (Integrated Graphics/Upgradable)

Approximate Purchase Date: July 8

Budget Range: $450-$500

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, video card

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 (letting me know if buying so far away is a bad idea), I'll shop there. Other than that newegg/amazon or any other reputable online dealer works.

Country: US

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU, good CPU with the plan to install a good GPU in a couple months when I have more cash.

I'd like a decent PSU so I can upgrade down the road.

Overclocking: Yes, perhaps in the future.

SLI or Crossfire: It would be nice to have the option available in the future.

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monitor that would be a stand in until I can afford a better one, but that is VGA and I don't know if that is an outdated input.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 through minimal upgrades.
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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. The 2500k is a possibility if someone can convince me Ivy Bridge isn't worth the extra $20.

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: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 LGA 1155 Z77 ATX Intel Motherboard ($90w/discount @ microcenter)

Microcenter has a $50 discount on any Z77 Mobo with the 3570K
Here a link with the promo and some other Mobos http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/0c732362#/0c732362/...

Priorities are overclocking, SLI/Crossfire, ability to use integrated graphics, futureproof and good quality (lasts long)

Case: Budget of around $50 I don't care about how loud the case is.
My priorities are good cooling/airflow, fans included, bottom mounted PSU with filter for intake, filters for intake fans.

I'm also curious about case fans connecting to my motherboard/PSU and the options with that.

This case seems like the best deal:

Rosewill CHALLENGER Black Gaming ATX Mid Tower $50 @ newegg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Here are some others I'm considering, and I'm wondering which best match up with my goals.
Cooler Master HAF 912
- Bottom filter not easily removable
- Front and Rear fans
- PSU and Front filters
Rosewill Challenger
Rosewill Challenger U3
- 3 fans and filters for front intake and PSU intake (Same as Challenger), but with USB 3.0
zalman Z9 / Z9+ 
- Vent for PSU w/o filter, not even mesh, just slotted vent
- 4 fans, top, front, side, rear
- 2 Channel fan control and temperature readout
- USB 2.0
Antec One Illusion - $60

NZXT Source 210 - $40
- No PSU dust filter
- Only 1 fan
bit fenix outlaw - $47+shipping
shinobi - only 1 fan
NZXT Tempest 210 - $55
- USB 3.0, 2 fans included
Fractal Design Core 3000 -  $70
corsair carbide 300R - $80
Antec 300
- No bottom intake for the PSU
- No intake fans
NZXT Apollo
Antec one illusion
Diablotek EVO Mid Tower ATX Computer Case $40 @ microcenter
- No front fan filter


RAM: I have no idea what I'm doing here, but I was thinking 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. My budget is $50.

PSU: I'm leaving the option of SLI/Crossfire available so I was told I should have a 750w PSU. Modular or Semi-Modular would be nice, but build quality/longevity are my top priorities since I'd like to use this for several years. My budget is $80 and I'm wondering which of these are the best quality

OCZ ModXStream Pro 700w
- $75-$30MIR= $45
OCZ OCZ-ZS750W
- $85-$20MIR= $65
OCZ ZT Series 650W Fully-Modular 80PLUS Bronze
- $90-$20MIR=$70 @ NCIX
PC Power and Cooling Silencer Mk II 750W High Performance 80PLUS Silver
- $90-$20MIR = $70
- Non-modular
OCZ Fatal1ty 750W Modular Gaming 80Plus Bronze
- $99-$20 MIR= $79 (S-M)
OCZ ZT Series 750W ATX12V 20/24PIN Modular 80+ Bronze
- $100-$20MIR=$80 @ NCIX
CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX750 V2 750W 80 PLUS BRONZE
- $100-$20MIR= $80 @ Newegg
Silverstone Strider Essential ST70F-ES 700W
- $83 @NCIX


Rosewill Hive (Bronze)
- 750w $90 (S-M)
- 650w $85 (S-M)
SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze 620W
- $90 (S-M)
Antec HCG M Series HCG-620M 620W 
- $93 (S-M)
CORSAIR Professional Series HX650 (CMPSU-650HX) 650W
- $115-$20MIR = $95 (S-M)
Rosewill Capstone (Gold)
- 750w $110,
- 650w $100,
SeaSonic X Series X650 Gold (F-M)
- $110
July 8, 2012 12:49:26 AM

I can't really say for the other parts but I figured I'd put in my two cents on the PSU. For myself I'mbuilding a gaming desktop with a $600-650 budget and a lot of people sugested the CORSAIR Builder Series CX500 V2 500W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply. Great power for the price of 59.99 on Newegg. It seemed a good choice since I'd be using this guy nonstop and hardcore. I can't really give you advice other than that, but there are plenty of other techie guys out there who will surely help you out. Cheers mate, and good luck!:) 
!