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$500 Budget to Upgrade Current Gaming Machine

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February 25, 2013 3:42:45 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: e.g.: Within the next few weeks.

Budget Range: (e.g.: 300-400) Around $500 USD after rebates and shipping

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming (Minecraft, Skyrim, Bioshock, Guild Wars 2), Streaming shows/Movies to my TV, Multitab Browsing.

Are you buying a monitor: No


Parts to Upgrade:

Current System Specs:

Motherboard: ASUS P5B Deluxe
Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 1.86GHz
RAM: 4GB Some Generic POS RAM
Graphics Card: NVIDIA 9800 GT 1GB
HD: Seagate 400GB SATA (Good condition, can reuse)
Power Supply: BFG 450W
OS: Windows 7 Pro (Have a 64-bit copy available for upgrade)
Case: Mid Tower (Good Condition, can reuse)


Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: None, best deal. Willing to order from multiple sites if need be.

Location: City, State/Region, Country - Tallahassee, FL USA

Parts Preferences: None.

Overclocking: No.

SLI or Crossfire: No.

Your Monitor Resolution: Generally 1920*1080

Additional Comments: A quiet machine would be preferred as my machine sits in my living room next to the tv and doubles as a streaming device for my daughters tv shows. My machine hasn't seen an upgrade in a few years and after this purchase will not see another upgrade for a few years unless something breaks. So please don't recommend parts based on the fact that I could upgrade to a slightly better part in six months, as that is not a reality for me.

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: My machine hasn't seen an upgrade in a few years and recently I have been playing every game I have bought on the lowest settings possible just so I can play the game without crashing or everything moving very slow.

If you have any additional questions for me I will gladly answer them.

Thank you for any help,
Zero
February 25, 2013 4:15:14 PM

AMD FX 6300 processor $130
Motherboard with a 970 series chipset $75
2 x4 gig of RAM $55
Radeon 7870 graphics card $230

$490

But only do this if your psu is a good quality item . Check that it does NOT have a small voltage switch on the back


If it does it will need to be replaced too , so you'd have to drop the graphics card to a Radeon 7850 2gig at around $180

and spend the remainder of the budget on a 500 watt 80+ bronze ,or better ,rated unit
February 25, 2013 4:16:15 PM
Related resources
February 25, 2013 4:16:52 PM

PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FV6V
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FV6V/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FV6V/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor ($119.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper TX3 54.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: ASRock 880GM-LE FX Micro ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Value 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($29.98 @ Outlet PC)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($39.99 @ Microcenter)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 1GB Video Card ($164.99 @ Newegg)
Case: NZXT Source 210 (White) ATX Mid Tower Case ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 450W ATX12V Power Supply ($38.24 @ Amazon)
Total: $503.15
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-25 13:16 EST-0500)
February 25, 2013 4:31:38 PM

If you can keep your HDD, PSU, Case, you can get much more for 500, but the psu has only 1 pci cable, but i suppose u get a molex to six pin with the gpu.
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FVhD
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FVhD/by_merchant/
Benchmarks: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FVhD/benchmarks/

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor ($119.99 @ Microcenter)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper TX3 54.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($19.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: Asus M5A97 LE R2.0 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Corsair 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.00 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7870 XT 2GB Video Card ($244.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $498.95
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-25 13:29 EST-0500)
February 25, 2013 5:26:09 PM

Thanks for the replies thus far.

So I see the general consensus is that I should go with an FX-6300 and a AMD HD 7850. Meaning spend a good chunk on the CPU and GPU and then get the rest at best bang for the buck.

Question, would it be better to shoot for the 7870 and take some slightly lower end RAM and a PSU or Stay with the 7850 and get some slightly better RAM and a PSU?

February 25, 2013 5:30:33 PM

ZeroDelocke said:
Thanks for the replies thus far.

So I see the general consensus is that I should go with an FX-6300 and a AMD HD 7850. Meaning spend a good chunk on the CPU and GPU and then get the rest at best bang for the buck.

Question, would it be better to shoot for the 7870 and take some slightly lower end RAM and a PSU or Stay with the 7850 and get some slightly better RAM and a PSU?


PSU is always your first priority. You want a good unit to provide power to your system and not one that will burn under the first stress.

For memory 8GB is the sweet spot, I wouldn't go lower. Even if you go you won't save enough for 7870, so I would go for the setup I linked to you
February 25, 2013 5:42:45 PM

What about the on board memory for the GPU?

I see the 7850 has a 1GB and a 2GB version and they aren't that far apart in price. Should I spend the little extra on the 2GB version?

Thanks
February 25, 2013 5:47:41 PM

ZeroDelocke said:
What about the on board memory for the GPU?

I see the 7850 has a 1GB and a 2GB version and they aren't that far apart in price. Should I spend the little extra on the 2GB version?

Thanks


No you don't have too. I choose mine because of the one more year warranty. 2GB is used for higher resolution monitors and may help for textures but again nothing too important!
February 25, 2013 6:13:11 PM

You can certainly use the 2GB version if you are going to be loading texture packs in Skyrim with a 1080 monitor.
February 25, 2013 6:48:11 PM

Thanks for the replies. I know I am asking a lot of questions but this will be my gaming rig for a few years so I don't want to waste money if I can help it.

Now regarding hard drives. Would shelling out the extra money for a small SSD to keep my OS on really make that big of a difference? Or would keeping my current HD be just as good? I do not have a lot of experience with SSD so I don't know their benefits over the standard SATA hard drives.

Thanks,
Zero
February 25, 2013 6:53:37 PM

I wouldn't get a small one, I don't think. If you're talking like 60GB you could get the OS and one game, maybe two on it.

128GB is reasonable. Just have to estimate how much you need and have to pay attention and manage what you have installed/how much free space is left.
February 25, 2013 9:06:33 PM

ZeroDelocke said:
Thanks for the replies. I know I am asking a lot of questions but this will be my gaming rig for a few years so I don't want to waste money if I can help it.

Now regarding hard drives. Would shelling out the extra money for a small SSD to keep my OS on really make that big of a difference? Or would keeping my current HD be just as good? I do not have a lot of experience with SSD so I don't know their benefits over the standard SATA hard drives.

Thanks,
Zero


It makes a huge difference! 120gb SSD seems the most value at this time! Definitely go for one!
February 25, 2013 11:51:29 PM

Thanks a lot to everyone. I am going to watch the sales for the next few weeks since none of the items are really on sale right now. Maybe if I am lucky I can get the CPU or GPU on sale.

My final build has been decided as follows:

CPU: AMD FX-6300

MOBO: ASRock MB-970EX4

Memory: G.SKILL Sniper 8GB 240-pin DDR3 2133

GPU: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 1GB Video Card

Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5 SSD

PSU: LEPA N Series 500W ATX12V

This will cost me a bit more than $500 but I think it will pay off the best in the long run.

If anyone has any comments or suggestions regarding my final proposed build, it is always welcome.

Thanks,
Zero
February 25, 2013 11:53:41 PM

ZeroDelocke said:
Thanks a lot to everyone. I am going to watch the sales for the next few weeks since none of the items are really on sale right now. Maybe if I am lucky I can get the CPU or GPU on sale.

My final build has been decided as follows:

CPU: AMD FX-6300

MOBO: ASRock MB-970EX4

Memory: G.SKILL Sniper 8GB 240-pin DDR3 2133

GPU: Sapphire Radeon HD 7850 1GB Video Card

Storage: Samsung 840 Series 120GB 2.5 SSD

PSU: LEPA N Series 500W ATX12V

This will cost me a bit more than $500 but I think it will pay off the best in the long run.

If anyone has any comments or suggestions regarding my final proposed build, it is always welcome.

Thanks,
Zero


Check your personal message please ;) 
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