$550 build need advice before buying

Approximate Purchase Date: in 2 days or a week

Budget Range: $550 NOT including taxes or shipping

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming

Are you buying a monitor: Yes but not included in this budget

Reusing : 200gb HDD and optical drive

Do you need to buy OS: No (using Windows XP from HDD (its a oem version but some posts say that you can still use it, so hopefully it works))

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Canadian sites like NCIX.ca newegg.ca tigerdirect.ca directcanada.com

Location: Canada Ontario Toronto

Overclocking: most likely not

SLI or Crossfire: no

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080

Additional Comments: (buying a monitor, keyboard, mouse, separately from this budget. looking for a 1080p monitor under 130$ in case anyone knows a good monitor at that price)


the best parts i found are

CPU: Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($115.69 + free shipping @ DirectCanada)

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($76.99 @ NCIX)

Memory: Corsair XMS 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($34.75 @ NCIX)

Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($234.99 @ NCIX)

Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($39.99 @ NCIX)

Power Supply: Silverstone 500W ATX12V Power Supply ($44.04 @ NCIX)

Total: $538.75

im wondering if the CPU will bottleneck the GPU and if you guys can find better parts or build at this budget i would really appreciate it.

Thanks in advance :)
5 answers Last reply
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  1. Well first off with the OS, putting a new motherboard on the same windows install is going to leave a huge pile of cobwebbs and is not recomended. Do you have the OEM WinXP CD? Also is it a 64bit version of XP? If it's only 32-bit then you can only use about 3GB of RAM. The rest will just be wasted unless you use it as a cache, pagefile, RAMDISK function.


    No the i3-2120 will not bottleneck your GPU. The i3 is a great CPU and will hold up for about anything. It's not ideal for heavily threaded games and apps but it will still perform better than AMD's offerings.
  2. Looks pretty good....went with a different PS (OCZ 550 watt ZS series). I typically prefer ATX boards...but that's at least another $20 or so. JonnyGuru's review of the OCZ 550 watt ZS series got a 9/10: http://www.jonnyguru.com/modules.php?name=NDReviews&op=Story&reid=248

    Should go with Win7 if you can. XP getting old in the tooth. Also, 200 GB HDD isn't much these days.

    Read that only a few games like BF3 will be impacted by the i3.

    PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/ca/p/coZU
    Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/ca/p/coZU/by_merchant/
    Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/ca/p/coZU/benchmarks/

    CPU: Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($109.99 @ Newegg Canada)
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z68MA-D2H-B3 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($74.99 @ Canada Computers)
    Memory: Corsair XMS 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($34.75 @ NCIX)
    Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($234.99 @ NCIX)
    Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($39.99 @ NCIX)
    Power Supply: OCZ 550W ATX12V Power Supply ($38.88 @ Canada Computers)

    Total: $533.59
    (Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
  3. i think my xp was 32 bit, im currently using a cheap laptop that has 64bit windows 7 oem, wonder if i can put this windows 7 into the other 200gb HDD? im guessing not right? also when i got the computer i got 3 cds (computer is HP Pavilion a1524n and i bought it from futureshop)

    im fine with 200 gb HDD but il think about getting windows 7 i guess but its kinda expensive XD
  4. thanks for the recommendation david i'll go for that power supply then
  5. Win7 home premium OEM is less than $100. Or try to find the win7 CD for that laptop.
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