First time build with a gaming influence

Hello all,

As a present to myself for my senior year of college I am building a machine. As an IT student I think its important to have the experience as well.

Approximate Purchase Date: purchasing parts over the next month

Budget: around 1200

System Usage: Moderate gaming, no video / photo editing

Monitor: looking into buying a asus VS229H-P Black 21.5

Do you need to buy OS: Yes

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:, open to other reputable suggestions

Location: Northern New Jersey, USA

Parts Preferences: Intel and Nvidia

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: not currently important

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080

This is what I have planned:

ASRock Fatal1ty P67 performance

Core i5-3570k

CPU Cooler

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB

Video Card
GIGABYTE GV-N660OC GeForce GTX 660 2gb

SSD for OS and Applications
SAMSUNG 830 Series 128gb

HDD for data
WD Black WD1002FAEX 1TB


Rosewill Challenger

Corsair CX600 V2 600 W

asus VS229H-P Black 21.5

So thats my build. If there are any blaring faults or pieces that dont work together please let me know. I've been researching this for a while and I am very excited to start. I'm open to any suggestions for better pieces around the same pricing. Thank you for any input / feedback.
7 answers Last reply
More about first time build gaming influence
  1. May want to consider a different motherboard. The one you have selected is of the older P67 bridge. H77 or Z77 is the current, fully supporting Ivy bridge processors and PCI Express 3.

    Check out this one:
  2. I agree - I wouldn't pay that much for a motherboard (not to mention P67 is way out of date and won't run a 3570K out of the box), also I hate Xigmatek coolers - they're incredibly difficult to install, come with cheap thermal compound, and too many loose parts.

    Try something like this:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($229.99 @ Newegg)
    CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U9B SE2 37.9 CFM CPU Cooler ($59.98 @ Newegg)
    Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($142.86 @ Newegg)
    Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($34.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($88.98 @ Newegg)
    Storage: OCZ Vertex 4 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($104.99 @ Newegg)
    Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($297.55 @ Newegg)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($109.98 @ Newegg)
    Power Supply: PC Power & Cooling Silencer Mk II 750W 80 PLUS Silver Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($89.99 @ Newegg)
    Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($22.98 @ Newegg)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($99.99 @ Newegg)
    Total: $1282.28
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
  3. Does your $1200 budget include the price of the monitor and OS or just for system pieces?
  4. If you need to work the monitor into that $1200 price point, here is a very nice build for you.
  5. Thank you all for your input.

    Whats the reasoning behind the radeon cards over nvidia?
  6. rdellas1 said:
    Thank you all for your input.

    Whats the reasoning behind the radeon cards over nvidia?

    Generally speaking, you get more bang for your buck right now with AMD. At virtually all price points AMD wins. Although, if someone prefers Nvidia, you aren't losing much by going with them. I recommend AMD, but would never fault someone for going with Nvidia.
  7. rdellas1 said:
    Thank you all for your input.

    Whats the reasoning behind the radeon cards over nvidia?

    NVIDIA is no longer a value leader - their best card currently is the GTX 670 but that's not worth it on a $1200 price point because you have to sacrifice something somewhere, and I never advise doing that. The Radeon 7950 is a better performer than the 660TI is, the 7870 GHz edition is better than the 660, the 7970 GHz edition is better than the 680, and so on. NVIDIA has definitely lost this round to AMD in the value category.
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