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$900 1st gaming build with monitor

Last response: in Systems
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August 14, 2012 7:52:47 AM

Hopefully, I am doing this right. First, I would like to thank you all for so much great info, I have been cruising the boards for a little while now, and I think I am ready to post my first proposed build, I would love your insight.




Approximate Purchase Date: 3-4 weeks

Budget Range: $900 with monitor (after rebates and shipping... Hopefully)

System Usage from Most to Least Important: mainly gaming (swtor, gw2) and media storage

Are you buying a monitor: Yes, 23 or 24in



Parts to Upgrade: all, building from scratch

Do you need to buy OS: Yes, basic windows

Location: Orange County, CA. I have a Micro Center right down the road, I hear thee are some good combo deals there?

Parts Preferences: Have heard and read that I should stay intel over AMD

Overclocking: Maybe in the future, although I am not sure that it is a necessity

SLI or Crossfire: Possibly upgrade to two video cards eventually

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: MacBook Pro from 2006 finally capped out on me. I have an iPad, so mainly looking for a gaming and storage desktop.


This is the configuration that I have put together, any input on saving money or changing out parts is more than welcome, thanks!


http://pcpartpicker.com/b/xwg

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core $189.99 @ Microcenter
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Pro3 ATX LGA1155 $102.55 @ Newegg
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 $44.99 @ Newegg
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM $77.99 @ NCIX US
Data Drive: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" SSD $114.98 @ NCIX US
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 550 Ti 2GB $123.79 @ NCIX US
Sound Card: Asus Xonar DG $19.99 @ Microcenter
Case Cooler: Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower $49.49 @ SuperBiiz
Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling 600W ATX12V $66.79 @ NCIX US
Monitor: Asus VH236H 23.0" $149.98 @ NCIX US
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) $90.40 @ Amazon

Total: ~$1030


Thanks,

Munz
August 14, 2012 12:47:02 PM

Try and get the gtx560ti and asrock pro4
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August 14, 2012 1:11:13 PM

i would save money on the sound card for sure, most boards have hd audio build in to them. id put that money towards a cpu cooler if you plan on overclocking. and if thats not in the picture then id get a 3450 instead of a 3570k
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August 14, 2012 1:47:57 PM

carowden said:
i would save money on the sound card for sure, most boards have hd audio build in to them. id put that money towards a cpu cooler if you plan on overclocking. and if thats not in the picture then id get a 3450 instead of a 3570k

id also reconsider the power supply choice. maybe one from antec or corsair. theyre cheaper and reliable. i wouldnt get a no name brand for a build

pc power is very good.It's better than antec.
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August 14, 2012 1:49:37 PM

allanitomwesh said:
pc power is very good.It's better than antec.



i realized my mistake there, i had just never heard of them. i spoke before i did my research, and thats why i deleted it haha. hopefully he didnt see that before i deleted it, sorry about that
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August 14, 2012 1:57:22 PM


carowden said:
will the new series of amd (piledriver) be based on the am3+ socket as well?


You betcha. It's up to Gigabyte to support a new BIOS release, and they're good about that.

Gives you a nice upgrade option next Fall when the Piledriver new-price smell is gone and Steamroller will be coming out (no idea as to Steamroller support on AM3+).

Probably won't need it before then -- the PhII 965BE/HD6950 combo is strong (even before over-clocking).








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August 14, 2012 1:59:49 PM

Wisecracker said:
You betcha. It's up to Gigabyte to support a new BIOS release, and they're good about that.

Gives you a nice upgrade option next Fall when the Piledriver new-price smell is gone and Steamroller will be coming out (no idea as to Steamroller support on AM3+).

Probably won't need it before then -- the PhII 965BE/HD6950 combo is strong (even before over-clocking).


yeah if those were supported on am3+ i was gonna say that wasnt a bad route, but if not, then i thought it was a waste to buy into a socket that would be soon dead. thats a good alternative if he decides to go amd and save some cash then.
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August 14, 2012 2:04:27 PM

I don't like to speculate. Anyway, it's an alternative.
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August 14, 2012 2:17:04 PM


allanitomwesh said:
I don't like to speculate. Anyway, it's an alternative.


I won't speculate.

The HD69502GB will obliterate a 550ti before an OC. In a gaming rig in the overwhelming majority of cases, it's the video card that drives performance.


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August 14, 2012 2:29:08 PM

Wisecracker said:
I won't speculate.

The HD69502GB will obliterate a 550ti before an OC. In a gaming rig in the overwhelming majority of cases, it's the video card that drives performance.


well yeah, but thats a card that costs about 100 bucks more haha.
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August 14, 2012 2:34:57 PM

Great, thanks for all the input. Like I said this is my first build, and I am not familiar with AMD at all which is why I stayed away, but it seems like a great budget option, as well as good for future upgrades.


Now re-assessing my build to your suggestion Wisecracker lol.

Thanks again, I'll keep you posted on what I decide.
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August 14, 2012 2:41:23 PM

Wisecracker said:
I won't speculate.

The HD69502GB will obliterate a 550ti before an OC. In a gaming rig in the overwhelming majority of cases, it's the video card that drives performance.

what he should get is the HD7770.
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August 14, 2012 2:42:16 PM

Thoughts:

1. Microcenter CPU & Mobo combo's can't be beat. Have to go to the store to get them tho ...
2. ASRock Z77 Extreme 4?
3. I love my PC power and cooling Mk III - you will too !
4. SSD: I'd go for either Samsung 830 or Crucial M4. I have an intel 330 and I love my SSD !! Once you go SSD, you will never return to hdd for your OS.
5. Sound card ?? Really ? Save $20 and put it into the GPU
6. GPU: http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/high_end_gpus.html
Nice look at a benchmark and cost for different cards. As always - more money is better.

Idea: Can u reuse an HDD from another machine? If so put that money into a GPU and get a HD 6870 or 560 TI. Both cards are a big jump from your current solution. If no on the HDD - could you swing a 6850 for $150 ? Again - a pretty big jump.

Good Luck !
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August 14, 2012 3:24:08 PM

Quote:
1. Microcenter CPU & Mobo combo's can't be beat. Have to go to the store to get them tho ...


Right, and I think I am set on the i5-3570k and ASrock z77 extr 4 now



As for the SSD and HDD, I want to obviously run most all of my computing off of the SSD, the HDD is simply there to store my massive collection of photos and media. I have a few externals that I wil l probably stick with for now.


So it looks like I should invest more heavily in a GPU, so that the big question now, everyone seems to have their own favorite, but I'm leaning towards the 560 ti as of now.






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August 14, 2012 3:25:08 PM

560 ti isnt a bad choice, i have the 448 core edition. i would agree that you should buy a little better gpu than the 550ti though. i would suggest amd cards, but i dont know them that well, and im sure wisecracker is about to anyways hahaha
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August 14, 2012 3:41:51 PM

Yea definitely, and I keep going back and forth between building it with:

i5-3570k and ASrock z77 extr 4

OR

AMD Phenom II x4 965 and Gigabyte GA 970A-UD3


Which could impact the GPU I use
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August 14, 2012 3:48:01 PM

well back to one of the original questions, do you think you will overclock?
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August 14, 2012 3:56:10 PM

Sorry, I meant to answer that earlier. In the foreseeable future, I do not think so. Mainly because I just don't think it is necessary for what my needs are.
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August 14, 2012 4:01:45 PM

you might consider the 3450 then. its around 40 dollars cheaper at microcenter, if i remember correctly, then you could put the money towards a better gpu. this does take away the option of overclocking though, but its not a bad cpu by any means...in fact its very good for gaming
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August 14, 2012 4:20:33 PM

It looks to be almost $50 cheaper, which brings the price of the intel and the AMD set up to be about the same now, still debating between the two.

Looking at the 6950 2Gb or the 560Ti 1gb for the GPU. Might be able to spend a little more and upgrade the GPU even more if it's worth it, but I feel like either of these will be great with whichever set up I end up choosing.
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August 14, 2012 5:27:33 PM

if you can get intel for the same price as amd, i would without hesitating buy the intel. thats just me though. amd has good cpus, but that i5 is definitely a better cpu
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August 14, 2012 5:47:40 PM

carowden said:
if you can get intel for the same price as amd, i would without hesitating buy the intel. thats just me though. amd has good cpus, but that i5 is definitely a better cpu

Anyone that would buy a PhII X4 965 over an Ivy Bridge i5 at the same price is nuts. The 965 is nice, but it competes with the i3, not i5.

Getting the 3450 or 3550 over the 3570k also gives you the option of saving money on the motherboard - you don't need it to have a ballsy voltage regulator, nor do you particularly need the Z77 chipset (not that it wouldn't be nice to have anyway), so if you can get the 3450 + ASRock Z77 Pro3 for less than the 3450/Extr4, that'll work just as well. You'll lose the option of Crossfire/SLI, but it'd be better to just replace your video card at that point anyway (instead of getting another 6950 or 560). So basically, just replace/remove a few bits from your original plan:

- No sound card
- i5-3450
- Radeon 6950 or 7850
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August 14, 2012 7:39:32 PM

Micro Center had a deal going so I'm think I'm getting a i5-3570k for $189, and z77 pro3 for only $44 when buying the processor.

It's $253 inc. tax
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August 14, 2012 8:41:43 PM

Don't go lower than the pro 4. My two cents.
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!