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New Gaming Build for $800-950

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July 11, 2012 5:49:50 AM

Hello. I am anticipating building my own home PC somewhat soon and was hoping the veterans here could lend me a hand, because I am simply stressing myself out now from picking parts. I want the most for my money, and I would like it to be a fun and somewhat easy learning experience. I will answer the questions from the template:


Approximate Purchase Date: Sometime in the next month I hope.

Budget Range: $800-950 after rebates and shipping.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, surfing the web, light video editing.

Are you buying a monitor: No



Parts to Upgrade: Completely new computer. Maybe I don't understand this question.

Do you need to buy OS: Yes. But I may be able to get a copy for free from my college.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Anything really. I've been using the PC Part Picker website.

Location: Iowa, USA. I'm nowhere near any in-store pickup locations.

Parts Preferences: Intel CPU and I'd like the Radeon 7850.

Overclocking: I don't know, this has me really intimidated. All I've heard about OCing is it can damage your computer.

SLI or Crossfire: No.

Your Monitor Resolution: 1680x1050

Additional Comments: Preferably a cool looking case that is easy to work with, obviously performance comes first. I don't play really intensive games like FPS's. The most intensive game I would play is probably The Witcher 2. Perhaps some MMORPGS.

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: My store-bought computer is getting old, and I am going to college for Computer Support, so I would like some hands on experience. Plus I would like a quality gaming computer.


I anticipate any help you all may be able to offer me. I've been choosing parts for the last month, all the choices are giving me a big headache. The only part I have stuck with is the video card and some miscellaneous parts. Here is the incomplete build I have so far. http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bNVb

More about : gaming build 800 950

a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 6:09:53 AM
July 11, 2012 6:21:07 AM

So I take that means I should OC? Haha. Also that HDD is half of my current one for not that much less. Same with the PSU, it's 100 W lower?
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 6:23:19 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z68 PRO3 GEN3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($246.97 @ Newegg)
Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($65.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair 650W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($64.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $934.88
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 6:25:15 AM

SilentxHero said:
So I take that means I should OC? Haha. Also that HDD is half of my current one for not that much less. Same with the PSU, it's 100 W lower?
LOL well you can go cheaper but no OC the CPU it's really up to you i did another build without OC what PSU do you have might be able to use it
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July 11, 2012 6:31:01 AM

Which would you personally recommend? Both look good to me. I'm just nervous about OCing.
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July 11, 2012 6:37:08 AM

Also another thing to note is I may be able to get the OS for free from school. So the money from that can be used for other parts.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 6:40:50 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($149.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77-DS3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($95.98 @ NCIX US)
Memory: Kingston 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($44.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1.5TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($266.97 @ Newegg)
Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($39.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: XFX 450W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($44.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $739.89
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)

Cheaper build no OC - GPU pre overclocked.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 6:42:17 AM

You could add a 120 GB SSD to my build if you want to spend the full 900 ish.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 6:45:37 AM

SilentxHero said:
Which would you personally recommend? Both look good to me. I'm just nervous about OCing.

well i would recommend the first build of course because i am addicted to OC :lol:  but you half to spend time learning how to overclock first which takes allot of reading so you might be better off not going that route it's up to you
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July 11, 2012 7:05:07 AM

I know a fair amount about computers and such. Voltages I'm a complete moron when it comes to it though. Would it be worth it to go ahead and buy the OC build, but not OC until a later date? Or should I just go with a non OC build and save myself the hassle? By the way I've chosen the Corsair Enthusiast 650W PSU.

I've read people saying there is no point in buying K processors if you aren't going to OC. Which I can understand. Is OCing really worth it? And if so, how hard is it to learn?
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 7:18:05 AM

SilentxHero said:
I know a fair amount about computers and such. Voltages I'm a complete moron when it comes to it though. Would it be worth it to go ahead and buy the OC build, but not OC until a later date? Or should I just go with a non OC build and save myself the hassle? By the way I've chosen the Corsair Enthusiast 650W PSU.

I've read people saying there is no point in buying K processors if you aren't going to OC. Which I can understand. Is OCing really worth it? And if so, how hard is it to learn?
Would just avoid the hassle it's not that big of a deal
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July 11, 2012 7:33:27 AM

Best answer selected by SilentxHero.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 7:37:00 AM

You don't need anything near 650W since you're not planning Xfire. The XFX I linked would be just about perfect.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 8:10:54 AM

SilentxHero said:
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bOaU

There's the build I have so far. Assuming I get the OS for free, what can I do to upgrade this build?
You could add a SSD PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z68 PRO3 GEN3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Mushkin Chronos 120GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($94.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($246.97 @ Newegg)
Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($65.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 520W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.64 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $944.53
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 8:19:41 AM

SilentxHero said:
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bOaU

There's the build I have so far. Assuming I get the OS for free, what can I do to upgrade this build?

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2400 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z68 PRO3 GEN3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($104.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Asus Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($314.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($65.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 520W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.64 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $917.55
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.) You could get a 7870 why do you keep getting that ram it's over priced lol
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 8:30:36 AM

Why not go for Ivy?
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 8:55:35 AM

FinneousPJ said:
Why not go for Ivy?
He could do that to i just figured what for it cost 20 bucks more but i was wrong it's only 10 dollars more
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 8:57:32 AM

here you go with ivy PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3450 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Pro3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($102.55 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Asus Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($314.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($65.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: SeaSonic 520W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.64 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Asus DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $925.11
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
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July 11, 2012 8:57:54 AM

What are the perks of Ivy? I've chosen that RAM because it's the highest rated low profile RAM I've been able to come across. I guess it doesn't really matter if I'm not getting a CPU Cooler. Would the 7870 provide a huge performance difference in the games I'm looking to play?

Also I've been looking into OCing, it's still a bit intimidating, and seems time consuming, but it doesn't seem overly complicated.
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a b 4 Gaming
July 11, 2012 7:51:43 PM

You can read about ivy vs sandy all over the net it's basically ivy is a little better here a link if you are interested http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=w... as for the 7870 it's a more powerful card than the 7850 so of course it would provide better performance but either one is fine for the games you intend on playing
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July 11, 2012 10:41:24 PM

Thanks for the link. I now have two different builds, and I have plenty of time to research and decide considering I have some time before I have the money.

Non-OC build: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bQmi

OC Build: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/bNMS

Also, want to recommend some quality 8 gb RAM to me? I'd like good low profile and non low profile. One for each build. Also it's fairly easy to upgrade to 16 gb RAM later isn't it?

EDIT: Also, I'm probably going to spend the money I'm not using on a better case. Hard when there is so many choices :pt1cable: 
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