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What do you think of this $650 build?

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October 12, 2012 4:24:21 PM

How does this look? It comes to around 650 after rebates.

EDIT:

This is my current "final" build. If anyone wants to suggest something else, go for it.

Processor: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3 GHz Dual Core
Motherboard: ASRock H77M LGA 1155
GPU: SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition OC 2GB
PSU: Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W
RAM: 8 GB GSkill DDR3
Hard Drive 1 TB Seagate Barracuda
Disk Drive: Lite-On
Case: Cooler Master Elite 430

Also grabbing:
Acer S220HQLAbd Black 21.5" 5ms LED Backlight Widescreen LCD Monitor
and Saitek Cyborg V5.

Thanks for all of the help.

AMD Phenom II X4 965 (Edit: Switching to a i3-3220. Any Mobo suggestions?)
8 GB Gskill
1 TB Barracuda
GTX 660 (This or the 7870. Opinions?)
Corsair Builders Series 600W (Thinking about dropping down to a 520W due to the processor change.)
ASRock 970 EXTREME3 AM3+
Cooler Master Elite 430
OEM Disk Drive

Thanks for your opinions!

Nate

EDIT: See above parentheses

More about : 650 build

October 12, 2012 4:26:27 PM

Looks great. PSU is overkill though, and you can do better than a GTX 660 at its current price.
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October 12, 2012 4:30:52 PM

The build you have is solid, but this one provides a better GPU and an SSD to boot up on.

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

CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($119.99 @ NCIX US)

Motherboard: ASRock Z75 Pro3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($84.99 @ Newegg)

Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($36.99 @ Newegg)

Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($55.99 @ NCIX US)

Storage: Crucial V4 32GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($45.87 @ Amazon)

Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($212.55 @ Newegg)

Case: Zalman Z9 Plus ATX Mid Tower Case ($55.98 @ Newegg)

Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($34.99 @ Newegg)

Optical Drive: LG GH24NS90 DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Amazon)

Total: $664.34

(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
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October 12, 2012 4:58:33 PM

Build with a better video card, but no SSD (which is a luxury in this price range IMO)

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i3-3220 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($119.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock H77M Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($38.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($229.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 430 ATX Mid Tower Case ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($46.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NS90 DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $622.91
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
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October 12, 2012 5:38:08 PM

It seems like people here prefer the i3 over the Phenom II. What is the reasoning behind that? The Phenom has 4 cores and 3.4 GHz over the Intel's 3.3. The AMD is also cheaper. It seems to me that the AMD is the obvious choice.
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October 12, 2012 5:51:00 PM

The i3's architecture is better, which enables it to outperform the 965, unless you do a heavy overclock on it. It is also lower power consumption.
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October 12, 2012 5:51:13 PM

The i3 is better than even the 8 core AMD FX processor. Core count doesn't equal performance.
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October 12, 2012 6:37:47 PM

CPU clock speed is only one factor in CPU performance. Computational efficiency (usually referred to as Instructions per clock or IPC) is the other half of the performance equation. Intel CPUs are much more efficient, and this easily makes up for AMD's clock speed advantage. The extra cores of the 965 BE do help it outperform the i3 in heavily multithreaded tasks, but games are largely single-threaded.

Here is a comparison of the two CPUs. If you look at the Cinebench results you'll see the i3 wins by almost 50% in the single-threaded test and the 965 BE wins by 12% in the multi-threaded test. This is only one benchmark and the i3 seems to do particularly well in it, but the i3 will outperform the 965 BE by a significant amount in apps that aren't highly multi-threaded.

A heavily OCed 965 BE can close the gap by a fair amount, but it will never be able to equal the i3's single threaded performance. And to get any significant OC you would have to buy an aftermarket HSF, which would eliminate the cost savings.
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October 12, 2012 6:39:28 PM

n8tehgr8 said:
How does this look? It comes to around 650 after rebates.

AMD Phenom II X4 965
8 GB Gskill
1 TB Barracuda
GTX 660
Corsair Builders Series 600W
ASRock 970 EXTREME3 AM3+
Cooler Master Elite 430
OEM Disk Drive

Thanks for your opinions!

Nate


I like your build. I built a pc similar last month...

amd Phenom 965 oc to 4ghz $90
8gb gskill 1600 $40
asrock am3+ mobo with sata3 and usb3 $55
150gb velociraptor hdd <-- I had this aready
amd readeon 7770 msi $94 after mir
rosewill case with 500w psu $40
win7 64 $99
I spent about $425 total on my system

I bought my parts on newegg and I can run any game an high to max settings and get 40-50+ fps I use it mostly for guild wars2
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October 12, 2012 7:46:03 PM

swat1820 said:
I can run any game an high to max settings and get 40-50+ fps I use it mostly for guild wars2


What screen resolution are you using? (fps numbers are meaningless without it).
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October 12, 2012 8:09:45 PM

This is a huge improvement over other people's suggestions.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-2310 2.9GHz Quad-Core Processor ($159.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock H61M-DGS Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($44.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ares Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($38.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: PowerColor Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($194.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 430 ATX Mid Tower Case ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($46.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: LG GH24NS90 DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $602.91
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)

Also note that the graphics card costs 30$ more than in the list.
And ill say it again this build is FAR superior to the ones above.
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October 12, 2012 9:11:40 PM

I think I am going to go with the i3 3220. Thanks for the suggestions. What is a good motherboard in that price range?
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October 12, 2012 9:35:01 PM

Screw the i3 3220 spend a bit more and get a used i5 2500
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October 12, 2012 9:56:28 PM

Kamen_BG said:


Also note that the graphics card costs 30$ more than in the list.
And ill say it again this build is FAR superior to the ones above.


I don't see how limiting your build to the cheapest motherboard on the market is far superior. It's like surrounding a Ferrari engine in a 1992 dodge shadow body. You need to have good, quality components all the way around.
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October 12, 2012 10:21:15 PM

Kamen_BG said:
And ill say it again this build is FAR superior to the ones above.


Not really. The only things you changed from my build was the brand of 7870, and the CPU and motherboard.

The XFX 7870 is $5 more expensive but it has better cooling and a lifetime warranty. That's worth $5 to me, but if you want to save the money ok.

The i3-3220 is about 8-10% faster in single threaded apps than the i5-2310 (slightly faster clock speed and Ivy Bridge IPC improvements). The quad core i5 is much faster (maybe 60%?) in heavily threaded apps than the dual core (with HT) i3. So the i3 will perform better in most games and maybe a bit slower in the rare games that use the extra 2 cores. The i5 will win clearly in heavily threaded graphics apps. No clear winner here IMO.

To get the i5 you downgraded the motherboard to one that doesn't have USB 3.0 or SATA III, and it has a lesser audio chip. And your motherboard/CPU combo is over $20 more expensive than mine (The Asrock H61 is OOS at Amazon and has been for a while. He'll have to get it from Newegg and pay several dollars for shipping.)

So there are lots of trade-offs in the changes you made. If you want to say it's superior, well that's a matter of opinion. But in no way is it FAR superior.

n8tehgr8 said:
I think I am going to go with the i3 3220. Thanks for the suggestions. What is a good motherboard in that price range?


What are you looking for in a motherboard? The one I included is the cheapest H77 board available. It does provide both USB 3.0 and SATA III, and it has a good audio chip. It is microATX however, so it's limited on the number of expansion slots available.

If you want a full size ATX motherboard with more expansion slots you can consider:

ASRock H77 Pro4/MVP LGA 1155 Intel H77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
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October 12, 2012 11:01:56 PM

Anyone have any thoughts on the Radeon vs. the Nvidia?
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October 12, 2012 11:13:51 PM

7870 vs. 660

The general feeling is that the 7870 wins over a wide range of games by a small margin, but there are some games that heavily favor nVidia and the 660 wins in those games by a bigger margin. So it comes down to price and which games you play.
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October 13, 2012 2:08:54 AM

Hun, the only game I can see in that benchmark comparison where the 660 wins in a "bigger" margin is SC2. 660 also wins on the Nvidia-optimized game: BF3, but it's about the same margin where the 7870 wins on all the other games.

@n8tehgr8 - I repeat- the 660 just isn't worth it for its current price vs performance right now unless you make use of programs that utilize CUDA cores, prioritize Nvidia-optimized games such as BF3 and I believe SC2, or you just really want a Nvidia card and you don't mind prices.
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Anonymous
October 13, 2012 2:52:02 AM

excella1221 said:
Hun, the only game I can see in that benchmark comparison where the 660 wins in a "bigger" margin is SC2. 660 also wins on the Nvidia-optimized game: BF3, but it's about the same margin where the 7870 wins on all the other games.

@n8tehgr8 - I repeat- the 660 just isn't worth it for its current price vs performance right now unless you make use of programs that utilize CUDA cores, prioritize Nvidia-optimized games such as BF3 and I believe SC2, or you just really want a Nvidia card and you don't mind prices.

i beg to differ on the 660 not being worth it.

Zotac GeForce GTX 660 with GK106 GPU Review. Page 7
this is a $230 660 competing against a 7870 G E (which are more expensive)
i like metro because it shows no favorites, it is brutal to any card.


i put forth that the 7870 and the 660 are equal in price/performance depending on the game and what manufacturers card. this is a case of meticulous shopping and research to find the best performing in the games the OP favors.l
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October 13, 2012 3:17:05 AM

Metro 2033 is brutal to any card you throw at it because of how complex and intense its graphics are. That doesn't necessarily mean it doesn't favor anything; though by that logic that doesn't mean it does either.

And hun, every 7870 out there is a GE.
http://pcpartpicker.com/parts/video-card/#c=114,82,110&...

Basically they're the same price but with better performance on the 7870.
It's the 660 Ti that is on par with it.
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Anonymous
October 13, 2012 3:31:49 AM

excella1221 said:
Metro 2033 is brutal to any card you throw at it because of how complex and intense its graphics are. That doesn't necessarily mean it doesn't favor anything; though by that logic that doesn't mean it does either.

And hun, every 7870 out there is a GE.
http://pcpartpicker.com/parts/video-card/#c=114,82,110&...

Basically they're the same price but with better performance on the 7870.
It's the 660 Ti that is on par with it.

thanks for pointing out that detail i missed, seeing GE in the bench threw me off. i looked again and found it was this card
SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition OC 2GB $249.99
$234.99 after $15.00 rebate(s)
and after rebates, would be a better card for price performance (in metro 2033)
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October 13, 2012 3:44:57 AM

Thanks for the help. After I saw that the 7870 was $75 off total I went for it. Updating my original post now.
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October 23, 2012 1:37:31 AM

Best answer selected by n8tehgr8.
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