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First try in awhile - sub $700 gaming rig

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November 3, 2012 3:13:27 PM

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/mmic

Approximate Purchase Date: sometime between now and Black Friday

Budget Range: ~$700

System Usage: gaming and occasionally movies

Are you buying a monitor: No

Parts to Upgrade MB, CPU, RAM, PSU, GPU, HDD, Optical Drive, Case

Do you need to buy OS: No

Location: Baltimore/D.C. area

Parts Preferences: Intel, nVidia

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: Likely down the road

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: My thought was to go overboard on the CPU today since that and the MB will be the most expensive to upgrade and the difference in CPU prices are less than $50 right now. This combined with the thought of adding another 550 Ti via SLI when prices drop further and the rig could use some extra juice in a year or so seemed to make sense to me. Going to be running Civ 5, Starcraft 2, Diablo 3, Skyrim, and Dishonored off the bat.

Why Are You Upgrading: I am just getting back into building PCs after about a decade off where I bought MacPro's and spent my time gaming on super low settings or relegated to my PS3 which I no longer find acceptable.

More about : awhile 700 gaming rig

a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 5:58:50 PM

To be honest, the 550Ti, compared to modern GPUs is both poor, and poor value. Certainly not worth using in SLi. I've put together a build, to meet all your needs, which is over budget. Normally I would chop back, to get under budget. I do feel though, that this is excellent value, and assuming you want to stick with nVidia, the best option. I might suggest the best way to save money, would be dropping the SLi option, or going with AMD graphics, and crossfire, either of which would save money.
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($149.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: ASRock Z77 Extreme3 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($54.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($227.34 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Source 210 Elite (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Antec High Current Gamer 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($60.99 @ Microcenter)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Total: $709.27
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
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November 3, 2012 6:36:37 PM

Thanks for the reply!

No I am not married to nVidia, it is just that I have had good experience in the past and it's been a long time so I was not sure how everybody is stacking up now a days.

So if I were to replace the graphics card in your setup to this: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 2GB $184.99 and forget about SLi or crossfire would I be able to save a little bit more on a different MB? Pretty happy that by ditching nVidia I am able to get a more powerful card and still be at $666.92 as shown here: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/mnKY

Anybody else have any thoughts, ideas, suggestions to improve quality and/or reduce cost?

You guys think it would make more sense to wait until around black Friday to see what deals come up or is this about as good as you think it will be?

Thanks!!!
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 6:47:13 PM

^Mal I don't think there is a Microcenter in the DC/Baltimore area?

At your budget, I'd be going AMD to save money and to honestly, the FX-6300 offers exceptional price/performance and costs quite a bit less than a standard i5 3450/3470, roughly $50-$60 less for better/equivalent multi-thread and normal applications and close performance in gaming. The money saved can be put towards a better GPU such as the 7950 which would impact your FPS greater than the i5 would.

Check out my $650 build here:
http://www.squidoo.com/electronicandmore#module14669582...
Switch the 7870 to the 7950 ($70):
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Total: $690 before rebates.

You get a better GPU and similar performance all around, its crucial to note that with in game, the GPU matters more than your CPU. Games like BF3 reflect that as a key. Everyone says that AMD chips like the FX-8350 lack in BF3, BF3 doesn't even regard the CPU a whole bunch:
http://www.legitreviews.com/article/2055/5/
With that said, the FX-6300 would be a perfectly fine substitute.

Also, I noticed you want Nvidia:
http://www.hardocp.com/article/2012/08/27/nvidia_geforc...
The 660 Ti and 7950 both trade blows at max settings for games @ 1080P, however if you look through all of the benchmarks, the 7950 wins out in most of the games. It should be also noted that if you ever get to wanting to overclock, the 7950 can overclock better:
http://www.hardocp.com/article/2012/08/23/galaxy_gtx_66...
At this point surpassing the 660 Ti by a large margin and surpassing even the GTX 670 which is $70+ more.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 6:57:08 PM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock B75M-DGS Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($61.97 @ Newegg)
Memory: Pareema 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital RE2 750GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Sandisk 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($82.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: HIS Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($184.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Core 1000 MicroATX Mini Tower Case ($29.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Total: $700.88
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 7:06:51 PM

jrf said:
Thanks for the reply!

No I am not married to nVidia, it is just that I have had good experience in the past and it's been a long time so I was not sure how everybody is stacking up now a days.

So if I were to replace the graphics card in your setup to this: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 2GB $184.99 and forget about SLi or crossfire would I be able to save a little bit more on a different MB? Pretty happy that by ditching nVidia I am able to get a more powerful card and still be at $666.92 as shown here: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/mnKY

Anybody else have any thoughts, ideas, suggestions to improve quality and/or reduce cost?

You guys think it would make more sense to wait until around black Friday to see what deals come up or is this about as good as you think it will be?

Thanks!!!

Yes without a need for SLi, you could use cheaper H77 mobo. You also wouldn't need 750w power supply. XFX 550w would be fine. Or, if you wanted modular, possibly Rosewill Hive.
As for graphics card, MSI TwinFrozr's have good performance.
i5-3470 definitely best value, for gaming, short of i5-3570K. Better and/or cheaper, than anything even close, from AMD.
With Black Friday, it's a bit "pot luck" if something you want is on offer. It's OK, if you have the knowledge to make a decision, when something "similar" is on offer, and it's a case of knowing if that different item is compatable.
I'm from UK, but pretty sure (I may be wrong) Microcentre prices are for online. Of course, you can get some even better walk-in deals, if you have a local branch.
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November 3, 2012 7:13:52 PM

Microcenter's CPU deals are in-store only. I'd also like to point out that, if you would like to splurge on the CPU/mobo, you can opt to get this ASUS 560 Ti for $144 before a $20 rebate (there was one for $120 before MIR, but that's sold out). The 560ti is a little bit shy of the 7850's performance, and has a smaller frame-buffer (1GB vs the 7850's 2GB), but you'd be saving quite a bit of money for a somewhat small performance delta.

I think that would be more geared towards your original plan (splurge on CPU/mobo, upgrade video card later), but the more balanced option (ie, getting the 7850) is also rather appealing.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 7:24:26 PM

ScrewySqrl said:
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock B75M-DGS Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($61.97 @ Newegg)
Memory: Pareema 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital RE2 750GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Sandisk 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($82.99 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: HIS Radeon HD 7850 2GB Video Card ($184.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Core 1000 MicroATX Mini Tower Case ($29.99 @ NCIX US)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Total: $700.88
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)

well at this budget i suggest to cancel the SSD option and to go with a better gpu like the 7870 or 660-ti and a k series cpu
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 7:29:32 PM

malbluff said:
Yes without a need for SLi, you could use cheaper H77 mobo. You also wouldn't need 750w power supply. XFX 550w would be fine. Or, if you wanted modular, possibly Rosewill Hive.
As for graphics card, MSI TwinFrozr's have good performance.
i5-3470 definitely best value, for gaming, short of i5-3570K. Better and/or cheaper, than anything even close, from AMD.
With Black Friday, it's a bit "pot luck" if something you want is on offer. It's OK, if you have the knowledge to make a decision, when something "similar" is on offer, and it's a case of knowing if that different item is compatable.
I'm from UK, but pretty sure (I may be wrong) Microcentre prices are for online. Of course, you can get some even better walk-in deals, if you have a local branch.


As stated, Microcenter deals are in-store only.
Also, the FX-8320 actually has made up most of the ground for the AMD chips vs Ivy Bridge. Not all yet since in gaming it is still outpaced by the i5 3450, but pretty much in everything else, the FX-8320 is similar, if not better. Also, the FX-8320 is $50 less than the i5 3570K but it can overclock with any AMD motherboard. Reported to hit 5GHZ with ease:
Conclusion has a nice sum of performance on the Guru3D review:
http://www.guru3d.com/articles_pages/amd_fx_8350_proces...
Overclocking:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/6396/the-vishera-review-a...
http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/amd_fx8350/11.h...

As you can see, the FX-8350 performs on par with the Ivy Bridge Sandy Bridge big guns such as the i5 3770K in games like BF3, Metro 2033, Dirt 3 and the benchmark of 3DMark11
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 7:31:50 PM

With due respect to AMD CPUs, who's high core count does help in highly multi-threaded applications, like video editing, NO AMD processor comes close to i5-3470, in any game, none of which benefit from that many cores. That may change in the future of course. Bench comparason of i5-3470 and FX6300
<a http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/702?vs=699 /a>. FX6300 also doesn't work out cheaper, in the long run either. It may be $30 cheaper (inc cooler and mobo), but uses more power, which soon uses up that saving.
Would agree GTX560Ti is an option. Bench is a bit out of date, HD7850 slightly better than this, even at stock.
<a http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/549?vs=547 /a>
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 7:48:31 PM

^ Quite the contrary.

Your energy bill may change a FEW cents at most, OP isn't pushing an overclock so I don't see that it'd make a huge difference. Also, The i5 3470 is actually $60 more, NOT $30.

If the OP wants, he/she can spend $40 more and grab the FX-8320, even though Newegg has currently inflated the price of it, the standard MSRP of the 8320 is $170 so it should just be $30 more. The FX-8320 holds its ground against the i5 3470/3450 fine, in fact in most reviews it can game just as well or at least somewhat close.

What you're not getting Mal, is that even though the FX-6300 is worse, with AM3+ the OP can upgrade to Steamroller in the future. That is expected to bring another 10-15% like Piledriver did in performance, all on the same AM3+ platform. Also, the fact is that the FX-6300 saves more money and as a result the OP can pick up a much better GPU in the 7950, compared to the GTX 660 in your build or 7850/7870 others have used... All I'm saying is games are more GPU dependent than CPU.

Prime example:
http://www.overclockersclub.com/reviews/amd_fx8350/10.h...
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 8:12:22 PM

Im with aznshinobi on this.
When you look at the most recent games with high quality graphics you get fractional , or even no , performance increase when cpu processing power is greater than the FX 6300

Here you can see an intel sandybridge -e produces no more FPS than even a $120 AMD quadcore
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/medal-of-honor-warf...

The best bang for buck is the FX 6300 .
Combined with a sub hundred dollar motherboard like the Asrock 970 extreme4 [ which has a 990x chipset ]
http://www.overclock.net/t/1144067/amd-990x-970-am3-mot...
and you free up some serious cash to spend on a better graphics card . And that will increase performance in games . Either quality of the image or fps .

Hes also right about power consumption. At a desktop , or surfing , writing an email the power difference is tiny . Running a game you might use 80 watts more if you are overclocking . A 1000 watts for an hour costs 16 cents .
You will be burning just over one cent per hour extra . You wont even notice that on your power bill
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 8:18:07 PM

As stated, Microcenter deals are in-store only.

I see what happened there. I was apologising for being over budget, because partpicker build came to around $750, but when it posted it only appeared as $709. Couldn't understand how. I see now, it's assumed a walk-in deal at Microcentre. Honestly a bit silly, that.
With respect, what you are saying is that OP can spend $40 dollars more for FX8320, than i5, or perhaps SAVE $30 with FX6300, for something that's nearly as good, and then next year, buy a Steamroller, that may (or may not) actually be better, than the i5 that, by that time, would have cost $250 less, even if you discount 10c or 15c a day (over a year) that he will have paid for extra electric.
Maybe I'm missing something, but just don't see the logic, of that.
I've got nothing against AMD, I seem to remember they once had some decent gaming processors, but recently every time a new version comes out, it's "not as good as we'd hoped", or "catching up with Intel", or "the next version ...". I wish they WOULD get their act together, and provide some real mainstream competition to Intel, rather than being "niche" for good iGPUs, or Multi-threaded applications.
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November 3, 2012 8:34:58 PM

Thanks for the spirited discussion as it has certainly helped me understand the choices I am making as well as pointing me towards several components that were cheaper and/or better. I was able to find a Microcenter within about 45 minutes of where I live so for $150 I can't say no to the i5 3470. With those savings I was able to nab a 7870 and still come in under budget.

I kind of narrowed it down to two options:
Micro ATX $616.92
ATX $661.28

The only upgrades I think I may do include SSD for the OS and actively played games; a new graphics card or another 7870 for crossfire; and RAM. Would the Micro ATX option limit my expansion to much?

Also I am not sure what should be important to me when selecting a case. I think all I really need is good ventilation, spots for an optical drive, HDD, SSD, 2x graphics cards a wireless card and.....am I missing something? I am not a fan of shiny bling or bright lights on my cases, I really prefer function over form but having said that everyone likes pretty.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 8:35:46 PM

Mal the AM3+ platform gives you an upgrade path for the next 3 years

I dont think its worth interpreting that as a criticism that future processors will be more powerful

especially when you contrast it with intel who deliberately change sockets and force people to buy new processors , motherboards and operating systems to stay current . In a few months the whole intel socket 1155 line will be obsolete .
Even with the slight extra power cost the lifetime lifetime ownership cost of the AMD will be LESS
Probably lots less
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 8:40:58 PM

Outlander_04 said:
Mal the AM3+ platform gives you an upgrade path for the next 3 years

I dont think its worth interpreting that as a criticism that future processors will be more powerful

especially when you contrast it with intel who deliberately change sockets and force people to buy new processors , motherboards and operating systems to stay current . In a few months the whole intel socket 1155 line will be obsolete .
Even with the slight extra power cost the lifetime lifetime ownership cost of the AMD will be LESS
Probably lots less


That's what I mean, because with the AMD chips, you can upgrade without changing motherboards, but with Intel, you'll have to change your motherboard in order to upgrade.

Course, since your Microcenter is nearby, I'd just go with Intel.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 9:53:32 PM

The point is, while I would love AMD to catch Intel, even pass them, it just doesn't happen. Bulldozer was going to beat the pants off Intel. What happened? Now we have Piledriver, and what are the comments "catching up on Intel". Steamroller is "going to beat Intel". Yes it might happen, but I wouldn't bet my house on it, by past experience. I don't see the benefit of getting a system, for $30 less that what is a better system now, because you MIGHT, for an extra $200, get a system that's about equal with what you could have had today, for a net $170 less (plus electric saving). True a year after that you might want to upgrade to Haswell, or whatever, but, if you did it would be because the extra performance justified the cost.
I totally agree that Intel change socket, too often, but, lets face it, if you chose to upgrade CPU and mobo, it's because you think it's worth it. I'd bet that Intel are hoping Steamroller IS better than Ivybridge i5, cos that's one thing that WILL boost sales of Haswell, when that comes out. Otherwise, there will be no great pressure to upgrade.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 10:07:54 PM

mal many of the bechmarks favored intel simply because of the nature of the benchmark

What use is a single thread comparison ? Its even less useful when AMD cores are not even the same thing as an intel core
What use is a gaming comparison using amassively powerful $500 graphics card running a game at low resolution ? Thats not how people game , well not if they have a brain .

In real world scenarios the user experience between even the FX 8150 and intels 2600K is negligible . In some situations the AMD is well ahead. In other the intel is , but for gaming particularly there is no difference .
With the tweaking to create piledriver there are substantial improvements . All good


and as far as I can see no gamer NEEDS a cpu faster than the Fx 6300 . By all means buy one if you have the money , but that extra money will NOT get you extra game performance .
And since most people are going to be spending less on a graphics card so they can pay more for a processor its going to give them LESS game performance
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 11:33:00 PM

I totally agree that for applications that utilise 5+ cores, a 6 core, or above AMD could possibly beat 4 core Intel. That's not rocket science, but even then 8 core AMD isn't going to beat 4 core Intel, by much. I also concede Piledriver might beat Sandybridge (and previous generation) Intel. The point is, it won't beat Ivybridge i5, in any game I know. How many games use 5+ cores? I don't know any.
You don't have to link these processors, with some super power GPU. Say you use a bog standard HD7870 with i5-3470, and the same with even AMD Fx-8350. The day someone shows me a set of gaming benchmarks, at stock, with the AMD even consistantly equal with the Intel combo, I will be happy to be converted. I don't think you'd even get that, if you used i5-3570K, and overclocked both to their sensible limit.
Where in practice, an AMD build can give a better gaming performance, is if you can use a CHEAPER CPU, and still get performance close to Intel, IF that means you can get a better GPU with what you've saved. That I would happily concede. That's a question of how it relates to budget.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 3, 2012 11:57:16 PM

malbluff said:
I totally agree that for applications that utilise 5+ cores, a 6 core, or above AMD could possibly beat 4 core Intel. That's not rocket science, but even then * core AMD isn't going to beat 4 core Intel, by much. I also concede Piledriver might beat Sandybridge (and previous generation) Intel. The point is, it won't beat Ivybridge i5, in any game I know. How many games use 5+ cores? I don't know any.
You don't have to link these processors, with some super power GPU. Say you use a bog standard HD7870 with i5-3470, and the same with even AMD Fx-8350. The day someone shows me a set of gaming benchmarks, at stock, with the AMD even consistantly equal with the Intel combo, I will be happy to be converted. I don't think you'd even get that, if you used i5-3570K, and overclocked both to their sensible limit.
Where in practice, an AMD build can give a better gaming performance, is if you can use a CHEAPER CPU, and still get performance close to Intel, IF that means you can get a better GPU with what you've saved. That I would happily concede. That's a question of how it relates to budget.



A little knowledge is a dangerous thing ........

LCD monitors refresh at 60 Hz . Thats 60 times per second . Thats also 60 frames per second
Thats an absolute limit of the monitor .

Say you get some old DX 9 game , lower the details and set the resolution to really low so you can pull 240 fps with your intel build , and then run an FX build at only get 180 fps ....well what do you think happens?
The answer is they both actually display 60 fps

The gaming advantage of the intel is a myth

Once you hit new games [ and who is going to build a new computer for old games? ] the margins between intel and AMD are non existent , or even favour the AMD if there is enough post processing of the image .
Here
http://www.hardwareheaven.com/reviews/1285/pg1/amd-fx-8...
is an FX 8150 wiping the floor with an intel i7 2600K .
And the margins between piledriver and BD are larger than the margins between SB and IB . If anything in this sort of gaming that people actually run on their computers the margins are now more in favor of the AMD

So you can pay intel a premium for no extra performance , or you can be smart and use a powerful enough processor and afford a better graphics card

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a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2012 12:37:48 AM

I don't quite get the logic. If you drop resolution and settings in some games, as both could do 60+ fps, there's no point in getting the better one? Isn't that an arguement for getting an Athlon? OP isn't actually thinking of getting i7-2600K. He's thinking of getting i5-3470, and he's not necessarily interested in multi-threaded applications, like video editing, where I WOULD agree Piledrive has an edge, certainly rather than Bulldozer.
I take it all the benchmark comparasons, and reviews, which tend to say the same thing. "Better than Bulldozer,( which doesn't say much for them), but not there yet, compared to Intel, for gaming apps", are invalid, in some way, or is it just there's no point in running games, at high settings. That's what Toms Review says, or am I completely mis-reading it. <a http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/fx-8350-vishera-review,re... /a>
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a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2012 1:02:41 AM

grab an old DX 9 game engine like the one used in Skyrim that cant multithread and the intel is going to make more FPS
But since the FX 8350 turns out more than 60 fps it will produce exactly the same user experience as the intel . The monitor cant display more than 60 fps no matter what the graphics card is throwing at it
Why would you buy the more expensive Intel? It doesnt do anything more for the user , except run most applications slower

and of course when you gt to a new DX 11 game with better image quality
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/fx-8350-vishera-review,re...
even the theoretical advantage of the intel goes up in smoke .
So again no point spending extra on getting the intel

Im not sure why you cant understand this . Its VERY straightforward .
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November 4, 2012 2:03:44 AM

I don't see your logic, Outlander. Why is it a given that the game will run at 60fps with the 8320? What about a year from now, when the 8320 will only put out 40fps on a new game and 60+fps with an Intel? The i5 is more expensive for a reason. The point is to get him the best, longest-lasting CPU for his money, which would be the i5. The benchmark you linked only shows a video card bottleneck - look at the very next page and you will see Intel commands a very strong lead over AMD.

If you want to do some logical maths over it, the i5-3470 is 24% faster than the 8350. The i5-3570 (faster than the 3470) is $30 less than an 8350, and 11% more expensive than an 8320. What about that makes the FX the appealing choice?
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a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2012 3:20:00 AM

The sktrim benches were posted earlier . And the reasons for the intels advantage already discussed , so I dont get your logic at all
Especially when the cpu is not likely to be an issue next year. The graphics card might , and definitely will before the cpu ever is .
That to me suggests you spend less on a processor and as much as you can on the graphics card

Since people most people dont have an unlimited budget they might consider a build like say

i5 3570k + Radeon 7770 On Newegg that will cost them about $350
Or
Fx 6300 + Radeon 7850 which will cost them about $320


The FX combo games better now, it games better in a year . It will ALWAYS game better ,and its cheaper .
Maybe spend the $30 on a cpu cooler and OC the FX
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a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2012 1:18:04 PM

jrf said:
Thanks for the spirited discussion as it has certainly helped me understand the choices I am making as well as pointing me towards several components that were cheaper and/or better. I was able to find a Microcenter within about 45 minutes of where I live so for $150 I can't say no to the i5 3470. With those savings I was able to nab a 7870 and still come in under budget.

I kind of narrowed it down to two options:
Micro ATX $616.92
ATX $661.28

The only upgrades I think I may do include SSD for the OS and actively played games; a new graphics card or another 7870 for crossfire; and RAM. Would the Micro ATX option limit my expansion to much?

Also I am not sure what should be important to me when selecting a case. I think all I really need is good ventilation, spots for an optical drive, HDD, SSD, 2x graphics cards a wireless card and.....am I missing something? I am not a fan of shiny bling or bright lights on my cases, I really prefer function over form but having said that everyone likes pretty.

mATX are becoming more popular. What you lose with mATX is number of expansion slots, but now there's less need for multiple graphics cards, and things like better on board sound, mean less people use sound cards etc. If, on the other hand, you're thinking extra GPU, and then wi-fi, then, perhaps you get some nice speakers, and do want to add a sound card, you may be better with ATX, then at least you won't run out of slots (hopefully)
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a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2012 1:40:43 PM

Outlander_04 said:
The sktrim benches were posted earlier . And the reasons for the intels advantage already discussed , so I dont get your logic at all
Especially when the cpu is not likely to be an issue next year. The graphics card might , and definitely will before the cpu ever is .
That to me suggests you spend less on a processor and as much as you can on the graphics card

Since people most people dont have an unlimited budget they might consider a build like say

i5 3570k + Radeon 7770 On Newegg that will cost them about $350
Or
Fx 6300 + Radeon 7850 which will cost them about $320


The FX combo games better now, it games better in a year . It will ALWAYS game better ,and its cheaper .
Maybe spend the $30 on a cpu cooler and OC the FX

Assuming we ARE talking about 2GB Hd7850, you could of course get i5-3470 AND HD7850 for the same as the Fx plus GPU, when you take into account mobo and no cooler, that would beat either option.
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a b 4 Gaming
November 4, 2012 5:48:13 PM

malbluff said:
Assuming we ARE talking about 2GB Hd7850, you could of course get i5-3470 AND HD7850 for the same as the Fx plus GPU, when you take into account mobo and no cooler, that would beat either option.



the i5 3450 is $20 less than the 3570k . Assuming the same 7850 your total cost is still more than the FX . Its even more expensive than the 3570/7770 combo at around $380

You dont get a cpu cooler , you cant over clock, and you have bought into a platform that will be obsolete in a few months
And it wont game better because the graphics card will still be the limitation
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