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Looking for ideas on a very low budget build for less demanding games

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November 17, 2012 8:41:55 PM

OK, try not to laugh too hard at my current setup. Using a Dell Dimension 5150 with a 3GHz Prescott P4 and 2GB RAM and a GeForce 7300GS video card. Still using an old CRT so target game resolution is 1280x1024 for now.

I don't currently play any modern games (obviously) but wouldn't mind having the option in the future. Mostly playing Lord of the Rings Online and some indie and older games. My target to start with is to be able to play LOTRO in high detail at 1280x1024. Would like to have the option to upgrade to a newer monitor and a more powerful video card in the future if I want to play newer games at higher resolutions. The only other things I do with the machine is basic web browsing, some video converting ripping our dvd collection to our media player, and playing around with virtual machines a bit getting used to linux.

Budget is tight. Not sure exactly how much I'll be able to spend, but cheaper is definitely better. I don't have any loyalty to AMD or Intel so suggest what you think is best. The last time I build my own system with new parts instead of other people's throw away parts was probably a P3 so I'm not completely up on modern hardware. From the research I've been trying to do it look like the i5-3570K is probably at the ideal point for price/performance ratio for what I want, but I'm not sure if the budget will stretch to that. If not what would the recommendation be? i3, fx series, something else? Any ideas if the newer Intel integrated graphics could handle older games at 1280x1024 at a decent detail level? If I could skip a graphics card for now I could probably spend a little more on the other components and then get a better graphics card later.
November 17, 2012 8:51:04 PM

What exactly is your budget? Also if possible could you fill this out: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/261222-31-build-advic...

You gave us a lot of info, but "tight" budget isn't very clear.

Check out my $650 build here:
http://www.squidoo.com/electronicandmore#module14669582...
Per what you want, drop the 7870 down to the 7850 you'll have a total of about $560.

That's what I'd consider a pretty solid build, at least per price better than using an i5 3570K and its IGPU for gaming. (PS, it's not THAT great as in the iGPU). I'd go for a dedicated card unless it's like the A10-5800K's APU. But yeah, the build I suggested will utilize the newer AMD chips, the Piledriver chips which are more than enough and very solid ones. Plus with 6 cores, you can VR better and it's a pretty solid chip in performance.
November 17, 2012 9:07:14 PM

amd A8 5800K quadcore FM2 $130
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASRock FM2A75M-DGS FM2 motherboard $45
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

2 x4 gig Kingston 1600 MHz hyperX lovo RAM $43
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Set this to 1.5 volts and 1866 MHz

case ~ $30

CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 $35
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

dvd drive ~ $18

500 gig hard drive ~$70

TOTAL : $371

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/a10-5800k-a8-5600k-...
http://www.legitreviews.com/article/2047/1/


Games very well at that resolution . And performs as well as the intel dual core at stock speed. A budget graphics card can be added to crossfire with the graphics built in to the processor , or an even more powerful card could be added later if wanted .
Look at the Rosewill micro ATX cases .
Related resources
November 18, 2012 12:50:16 AM

Sorry, I really should have put a budget in, but I'm still in negotiations with the wife. :)  I suspect under $400 would probably be best.

Approximate Purchase Date: Ideally I'm hoping there will be some black friday/cyber monday deals

Budget Range: not firm yet, but say $400?

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, browsing, video re-encoding, virtual machines

Parts Not Required: Probably just keyboard, mouse, and monitor. I have a hard drive I can use, but I think I'm going to try and pick up a cheap, small SSD next weekend if there are any sales. I don't think I have access to any sata dvd drives so I'll need to get a cheap one.

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: No strong preference. I've purchased from newegg before and like them. I have a Frys that's about 45 minutes away.

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: none

Overclocking: Probably not at first, but would have no problems doing it if the hardware supports it.

SLI or Crossfire: No.

Monitor Resolution: 1280x1024.

Additional Comments:
November 18, 2012 1:22:35 AM

At your budget, you shouldn't be looking at an SSD. You should be looking at main storage. And if your budget is truely that low, you really only have about a $330 since I've seen windows as low as that much.

If Windows isn't apart of your budget...
Check out my $350 or $400 build here:
http://www.squidoo.com/electronicandmore#module14772757...
Should be fine.
November 18, 2012 1:57:39 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Pentium G860 3.0GHz Dual-Core Processor ($68.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock H61M-DGS Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($44.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: AMD Entertainment Edition 4GB (1 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($11.11 @ Amazon)
Video Card: HIS Radeon HD 7750 2GB Video Card ($90.98 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master Elite 311 (Blue) ATX Mid Tower Case ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec EarthWatts 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($39.31 @ Compuvest)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $301.35
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-11-17 22:57 EST-0500)

This is going to play every game on high or maxed (if not very CPU dependent.) Don't get aznshinobi's build, APUs are horrible for gaming.
November 18, 2012 2:40:29 AM

^ Yeah why don't you read OP's system usage. OP's is going to be doing video re-encoding and Virtual machines which would be better on a quad core or for that matter on the A10-5800K.

I never said APUs are great, but it's not bad. The AMD APUs are much better than Intel iGPUs like the HD 4000...
November 18, 2012 5:02:50 AM

Thank you all very much for the ideas. I hadn't really looked at the A10 very much, but it looks like that may not be too bad. The only thing that worries me is that it looks like there isn't really any way to upgrade, it's already the top of it's line. I usually keep my systems long enough that by the time I'm ready to upgrade the processor it's time to upgrade the motherboard as well, but it's still nice to know that there's an upgraded cpu available.

That's a good point about the video encoding. I suspect that I won't be too disappointed no matter which way I go since even the lowest end celeron is still going to be enormously faster than my current setup.
November 18, 2012 5:05:14 AM

What is your current setup? Maybe you could upgrade the current setup?
November 18, 2012 11:47:10 PM

If that's the case, you should go for the FX-4300 honestly but it's up to you.
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor ($119.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock 880GM-LE FX Micro ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Patriot Viper 3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($28.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Momentus XT 500GB 2.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 6670 1GB Video Card ($50.60 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Source 210 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($45.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $406.51
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-11-18 20:48 EST-0500)
November 19, 2012 6:48:16 AM

aznshinobi said:
If that's the case, you should go for the FX-4300 honestly but it's up to you.
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-4300 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor ($119.99 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: ASRock 880GM-LE FX Micro ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Patriot Viper 3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($28.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Momentus XT 500GB 2.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 6670 1GB Video Card ($50.60 @ NCIX US)
Case: NZXT Source 210 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($45.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($15.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $406.51
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-11-18 20:48 EST-0500)


Maybe spend a little more and get the FX 6300?
November 20, 2012 12:41:32 AM

milkshakez7z said:
Maybe spend a little more and get the FX 6300?


Would've recommended it, it's only $10 more, but ofr the sake of the price. I just put in the FX-4300, if OP wants to can use the FX-6300 it's only $10 more afterall.
November 21, 2012 6:22:12 AM

milkshakez7z said:
What is your current setup? Maybe you could upgrade the current setup?


Sorry to take so long to get back. Current system is in the original post. There isn't much possible to upgrade. I think some motherboard revisions of this Dell model can support pentium d's, but not the one I have. 2gb is already at max memory. Video card could be upgraded, but the power supply is weak and because it's a BTX case it has to be a single slot wide.

I did see this combo on newegg that looked pretty decent. It was $250 yesterday. A little more that I wanted to spend, but that's not too bad for an fx-8320, mobo, and memory right?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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