Trying to build a budget gaming PC. I want to stay within a budget because I have never done gaming on a PC before so I thought I should try it. If I don't enjoy as much as I did when I had a console, then it would still be a pretty decent machine even when newer hardware and stuff comes out.
I tried to keep expandability and longevity in mind to build this system. Also, if things go i well, I would like to start doing video editing as a hobby. So I would also like to be able to upgrade my system into a better video editing machine if it becomes a substantial part of my day in the future.
so in short I need a long-lasting, budget PC that could easily upgrade to gaming rig, or a video editing system. Why didn't I just say that at first? lol
I was planning on buying a GPU or cooler until I figure out if I am actually going to be working this thing to death, or if I'm just going to be surfing the web with it.
If I want to invest in a GPU, which do you suggest? I've been seriously considering it but I have absolutely no idea where to start.
and I'm looking at a 21.5 inch full HDMI monitor
Small monitor with HDMI cable means 1920x1080, so you won't need a super powerful card. Could probably get away with something in the ~$100 range, like a 7770 or a GTX 550ti, and still have more than enough graphics power unless you're trying to run games like Crysis2 or BF3 at super high resolutions. For the cpu cooler, unless you're going to overclock you can just stick with the included heatsink, it will do the job just fine at stock clocks, and frankly you won't need that good of a processor with a single monitor and just that res, but it IS a good cpu (I have one in my current system) and I can't say anything bad about it.
Come up with a total budget you want to work within, pick parts you like or want to use, and then upgrade components or downgrade as you adjust to get to the price you want.
One last thing to consider is if you intend on using a higher resolution monitor, multi-monitor setup, or ultra high graphics in games. Those will all affect where you're going to want to look as far as a video card. Best places to start are either the cpu, gpu, or a combo of them that will give you approximately the desired results, and then build around them, adjusting options as you go. Hope that helps.