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~600 Compact Gaming rig (opinions?)

Last response: in Systems
August 10, 2012 5:20:26 PM

Purchase Date: Within 1 month
Budget Range: $600 before rebates
System Usage: gaming, coding, surfing the web, image and video editing(casual)
Are you buying a monitor: no
Parts to Upgrade: New build

My Picks:
CPU= Intel Core i5-3550 Ivy Bridge 3.3GHz
GPU= ASUS ENGT520 GeForce GT 520 (Fermi) 2GB
RAM= G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB
PSU= Athena Power 550W Micro ATX 80 PLUS Active PFC
Case= Rosewill RANGER-M Dual Fans MicroATX Mini Tower
ODD= ASUS 24X DVD Burner
HDD= Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EADS 1TB Already Have
SSD= SanDisk Ultra SDSSDH-120G-G25 2.5" 120GB SATA II Already Have
NetAdapter= ASUS PCE-N15 Wireless Adapter IEEE 802.11b/g/n PCI Express 300/300Mbps
OS: Win7 Premium Already Have

Preferred Website:
Location: Texas, U.S.A.
Parts Preferences: Intel, Asus
Overclocking: Maybe
SLI or Crossfire: No
Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080 @60Hz 5ms

Additional Comments: Pricing is paramount. Size is also of relative importance, hence the microATX selections. I plan on keeping this build for 1-2 years while I finish out my degree. As far as games: D3, Skyrim, Minecraft

Reason for Upgrading: My Dell Studio 1555 is on it's last leg. The gpu is starting to act up, and overall it's a dated system.
Core 2 Duo p8600 @2.4Ghz
ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4500/5100 w/512MB vid-mem

Thanks in advance to anyone who shares their opinion. I greatly appreciate it!!!
August 10, 2012 7:59:11 PM

IS there a reason you need it compact??? You can get a lot more performance out of a computer with a mid/full tower case (Considering you can get a regular size GPU,PSU, And MOBO)
August 10, 2012 9:16:34 PM

this case is better than the range (2 120mm fan slots instead of a 120 and an 80mm), with the option of an 80mm on the side over the CPU

on sale for $25 now. just buy a Rosewill Blue LED 120mm fan for the front.

the 520 is also a very, VERY weak vid card.

Athena is a weak PSU.

Here's my $600 build suggestion, especially since you already have the OS, SSD and HDD:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3550 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock H77M Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($209.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Rosewill R101-P-BK MicroATX Mid Tower Case ($24.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 380W ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($38.49 @ SuperBiiz)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $601.42
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-10 17:16 EDT-0400)
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August 13, 2012 5:56:17 PM

@Xaugerx26 - No, there's no real reason, other than saving space. I'm more than willing to upgrade to ATX though.

@ScrewySqrl - Isn't the psu you provided a little underpowered? Especially for the GPU?

I was also considering a bench style case, this one to be exact. There's just something about it that I really like. Thoughts?
August 13, 2012 6:31:49 PM

no. the Antec 380 green has 30 amps on the 12v rail, PLENTY for a 7850 (which uses about 17 amps at max itself).

cases are subjective. the bench style case, however, may cause/be subject to more RF interference, and will collect a lot more dust than one in an enclosed case.