The first component on our list is the GeForce GTX 550 Ti. The GTX 550 Ti comes with 192 CUDA cores and 1GB of memory. Its $150 price tag makes it an ideal GPU to build a budget-friendly gaming PC around.
CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 925 2.8GHz ($119.99 on amazon.com)
For our CPU, we debated between going with our AMD Phenom II solution and Intel's slightly more expensive i3-550 processor (+$10). While both are good performers, when we were making our purchasing decisions, the i3s were extremely short on availability and we heard rumblings that they may be phased out due to Intel's forthcoming, more expensive i3 Sandy Bridge solution. Because we wanted people to be able to recreate our rig by the time this story went up, we went with AMD's CPU. Fortunately, at the time of publication, people can still buy Intel's i3 on Newegg.com for $129.99. An affordable well-received motherboard that can go along with that is the ASRock H55M-LE LGA 1156 Intel H55 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard, which retails for $64.99 on Newegg.com. Regardless, our AMD Phenom II CPU received five stars on both Newegg.com and Amazon.
Motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-M68MT-D3 ($49.99 out of stock, Alternate: $45.99 on newegg.com)
In choosing our motherboard, we went with an affordable solution that complimented our CPU. Having a four-star rating from over 35 Newegg.com members gave us the impression that it was well liked. The motherboard we purchased just went out of stock. A similar motherboard readers can use is another GIGABYTE solution. It's compatible with our CPU and is currently on sale for $45.99, $4.00 cheaper than our board.
RAM: CORSAIR 4GB (2 X 2 GB) 1333Mhz Dual Channel 240-pin DDR3 ($42.99 on amazon.com)
Because most modern games make use of four gigabytes of RAM, we wanted no less for our rig. We decided to go with Corsair because it's a brand we trust. Featuring a four-star rating on Newegg.com and on sale at amazon.com for a very reasonable price, it just made sense to go with 4GB of Corsair XMS3 ram.
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 500 GB ($39.00 on ctistore.com)
For our hard drive, we went with a 500GB Seagate Barracuda. The hard drive features a four-star rating on Newegg.com from over 980 reviews. While it's not the biggest hard drive out there, it's more than enough for us to play Crysis 2 and to install other applications. In addition, more space could always be added later.
Power Supply: COOLER MASTER eXtreme Power Plus ($29.99 after mail in rebate on newegg.com)
With Cooler Master being one of the most respected hardware brands out there, its affordable 500 wattage power supply immediately got our attention. With its four-star rating from over 175 people on Newegg.com, it isn't likely that the power supply unit will fry out on us anytime soon, unlike cheaper solutions.
Case: Antec Three Hundred Tower ($54.99 on microcenter.com)
For our case, we decided to go with Antec's three hundred model. The mid-tower case is light, but sturdy. While it is a mid-tower case, there's room for nine drive bays and owners have praised its spaciousness and airflow room. In addition, it's black, sleek, and sexy.
DVD Drive: ASUS DVD-E818A7T/BLK/B/GEN ($16.99 on Newegg.com)
At a really affordable $16.99, the ASUS black 18x DVD rom got our attention right away. Furthermore, from 10 reviews on Newegg.com, it received a positive 4-star rating. Did we mention its black finish goes well with our case?
Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit ($99.99 on amazon.com)
For our operating system, we decided to go with the popular Windows 7 Home (64 bit edition). We went with the 64-bit version because the 32-bit version only supports up to three gigabytes of RAM and as previously mentioned, most modern games will take full support of four gigs.
Analysis: As you can see, by shopping around intelligently, our total came right under $600. Furthermore, all of the hardware we purchased received above average to top-notch review scores, ensuring we got the best bang for our buck.
It is worth reiterating that hardware prices are always subject to change. By the time you read this, the prices you see listed may be more expensive or cheaper than what we've purchased them for. These components are also susceptible to go out of stock or to become phased out completely. Regardless, our itemized list can still be used as a general shopping guideline.
I agree that is a pretty subpar build for the amount you spent. The first and sometimes major mistake new builders make is only buying a product from the amount of reviews without actually reading a real critic review from guru3d, johnny guru, tomshardware etc.... I wouldn't trust half of any of those customer reviews because most of them are wrong.
Sorry to say that will not play crysis 2 very well at all.
I agree with what the others said above; You should really do some further research into some of the parts you're buying before actually making a decision, especially with that power supply (frankly, it's garbage.).
I usually spend at least a week or two, sometimes a month, researching before I make a purchase decision.
What are you like browsing on the waybackmachine or something? These prices and products are so outdated. The 550 Ti goes for $100, not $150. The dude compared the Phenom II X4 with a first gen i3. 8GB of RAM is now $30. 4GB of RAM for $42? And, also look at how cheap the hard drive was. That goes for minimum $65 today.
Honestly, that build could be a lot better. Here's another one, all from Microcenter. Final price is 610 including tax, however, that's not including rebates.
-FX 4100 quad core-unlocked multiplier-89.99
-Gigabyte GA-78LMT-S2P Socket AM3+ 760G mATX AMD Motherboard-69.99--Note Microcenter has a combo on this board and the FX4100, after rebate this board is free, rebate is 10 bucks.
-Thermaltake V3 Black Edition case-35, 25 after 10 dollar rebate
-Corsair Builder Series CX430-44.99
-Western Digital Caviar Blue 7200rpm hard drive 500gb-62.99
-LG Sata dvd burner-15.99
-8gb ddr3 1600 ram(microcenter generic brand)-37.99
Zotac GTX 650 TI video card with 1gb ddr5 ram-159.99-rebate brings it to 139.99
-Windows 8 64 bit-99.99
So build is 610 with at least 40 in rebates.
Personally I like this build, FX 4100 is at least comparable to the chip you have. The big difference is the GTX 650 TI is on the level of the 560 TI, and would smoke the 550 TI.
Other big thing is I don't mind some cooler master power supplies, but I've found that the dual rail designs seem to shut down if you pull too much power from them, from experience when building for others. That's one nice thing on the Corsairs, they have a strong single rail which solves a lot. Keep in mind these are Microcenter prices, but you should be able to score similar deals on newegg and tigerdirect.
^I'm not a fan of the FX-4100 and I think you're being too optimistic about the GTX 650 Ti; it's on the level of the GTX 560, not the GTX 560 Ti. Still better than the GTX 550 Ti, and overall the build is just plain better.
Again, i pulled it from Microcenter, and FX 4100 is overclockable. With the rebates counted though, you can stretch that build as they've got the FX 8120 Octa Core for 139.99, I think the cheapest board they are showing with it though is a 970 series board which the bundle with that is 175. But if you have 40 in rebates...Or there is always the FX 6300 Vishera for 129.99 with the above Gigabyte for free. But literally they are a good deal now because you can get FX 4100 and boards for 100 or under. As far as GTX 650 TI, thought I'd seen benchmarks somewhere that showed it was nearly as good. Either way though, 560 is stronger than 550ti.