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Computer for gaming

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March 3, 2013 2:41:41 AM

I used to be somewhat informed on graphics cards, processors, etc... but unfortunately with all the new cards and processors available today, I can't quite keep up. I'm in the market for a new computer and I want to make sure I have plenty of information before making an investment in a new computer. Currently I'm looking at pre-built since I'm not quite confident in my knowledge of CPU's to build one, although iBuyPower.com looks fantastic for building. Currently, I mostly use my computer for browsing the internet, music, watching movies and TV shows from time to time, and gaming, specifically the only games I play at this time are WoW and SC2. The computer I'm looking at now is this: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/iBuyPower---Desktop---4GB-M.... It looks like it'll work perfectly and the price fits my budget perfectly, although I can go higher. I've found sites that list all the current processors available, but I would like to see a list of Intel with comparable AMD. For example, the computer I'm looking at has a 3rd gen. i3 3220, and from what I've found on this site, the AMD processor most often compared with is the FX-6300. Also, my current computer is an eMachines T5082, but I've added 2GB RAM and upgraded my card to an Nvidia GeForce 8500 GT. It plays WoW and SC2 on low-medium settings, although during "intense" moments it gets quiet laggy. I can see other threads asking this exact question so I apologize for annoyingly asking the same question, but with all the 1st gen, 2nd gen, 3rd gen, i3, i5, i7, Radeon, Athlon, Xeon, etc.., processors and graphics cards are starting to melt together in my head and I can't keep up with all the newer models :pt1cable:  However, thank you for your time and any input would be helpful.

More about : computer gaming

a c 271 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 1:02:48 PM

This topic has been moved from the section CPU & Components to section Systems by Mousemonkey
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March 3, 2013 1:34:51 PM

Ok, so to help you comprehend all these processors all we have to do is remove some. Don't worry about old gen i series chips, and the Pentium is pretty old. For AMD FX is the major one along with high end Phenoms. Radeon is Amd's GPUs, and athlon is old. And XEON is extreme and mostly used for servers. There is no reason to confuse them as long as you keep it to the i series and the FX series. The PC linked is not to good. It only has 4 gigs of ram, no dedicated GPU. The most expensive part is the i3. I highly recommend building it yourself since prebuilt pcs can overcharge. The parts for this one are not over 400 dollars. But if you can't do that than go to www.ibuypower.com which is their site and you can customize as much as you want. Though the shipping is expensive.
Here is one that will work for you.
Case 1 x AZZA Solaris Gaming Case-Black
Processor 1 x AMD FX-4100 CPU (4x 3.60GHz/4MB L2 Cache)
Motherboard 1 x ASUS M5A97 R2.0 -- AMD 970
Memory 1 x 8 GB [4 GB X2] DDR3-1600 Memory Module-Corsair or Major Brand
Video Card 1 x NVIDIA GeForce GT 630 - 4GB
Case Lighting None
Power Supply 1 x 400 Watt - Standard
Processor Cooling 1 x Certified CPU Fan and Heatsink
Video Card Brand 1 x Major Brand Powered by AMD or NVIDIA
Primary Hard Drive 1 x 1 TB HARD DRIVE -- 32M Cache, 7200 RPM, 6.0Gb/s-Single Drive
Data Hard Drive None
2nd Optical Drive None
Optical Drive 1 x 24X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive-Black
Sound Card 1 x 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard
Speaker System None
Network Card 1 x Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100)
Monitor None
Keyboard 1 x iBUYPOWER Standard Gaming Keyboard
Mouse 1 x iBUYPOWER Standard Gaming Mouse-Blood Red
Operating System 1 x Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium + Office Starter 2010 (Includes basic versions of Word and Excel)-64-
650 dollars without shipping and tax
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Related resources
March 3, 2013 6:24:00 PM

This is fantastic. Thanks for the reply. After further shopping around, I am beginning to lean towards building one, although I'll have to go through either iBuyPower.com (I would go through Cyberpowerpc but they look a little more expensive than iBuyPower). I could probably work my way through it but I'd rather leave the building up to the experts. In your experience with iBuyPower, if any, do you think their prebuilt prices are more accurate or would it still be wise to customize?
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 6:25:23 PM

What is your budget? I will put something together for you.
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March 3, 2013 7:14:25 PM

My budget is about $800 but I could go higher if any potential upgrades would be considered massive upgrades i.e. "this processor would be $50 more but it is absolutely better."
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 7:25:39 PM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($188.79 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-H77-DS3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($96.48 @ Amazon)
Memory: Mushkin Radioactive 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.98 @ Outlet PC)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.98 @ Outlet PC)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7870 XT 2GB Video Card ($234.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case ($55.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($69.98 @ Newegg)
Optical Drive: Samsung SH-224BB DVD/CD Writer ($16.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $783.16
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-03-03 16:25 EST-0500)
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March 3, 2013 7:57:26 PM

^^^ You would have to build that yourself. iBuypower's prices are pretty good. But the shipping will kill you! 75 dollars for most places and 100+ for others. I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend customizing, since sometimes they put a trash GPU on default. I would customize one on ibuypower but not sure if i can share all the parts with a link to the site. Maybe i could walk you through it though.
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March 3, 2013 8:14:51 PM

I do like iBuyPower, they have TONS of options but I did notice the $75 shipping fee for standard. I do like the total price for the parts TinyVoices listed, but what about cooling systems, sound cards, and network card? Are some of those built-in to other parts?
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 8:18:27 PM

You don't need a sound card.

Watercooling isn't necessary.

You will need to buy a wireless card. The motherboard has built in LAN though.
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March 3, 2013 8:35:23 PM

That is true^
I suggest the Revolt r550 http: www.ibuypower.com/Store/Revolt_R550
Though I suggest adding a better Graphics card like the 650 or 660.
If not an always needed thing is a good GPU such as the GTX 650 + or a radeon
7850 +
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 8:36:41 PM

the gtx650 will not game past low settings at 1080p. You want to stick with a hd7850/gtx660 or better.
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March 3, 2013 8:45:25 PM

tiny voices said:
the gtx650 will not game past low settings at 1080p. You want to stick with a hd7850/gtx660 or better.

It still works.
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 8:47:05 PM

The 7870xt in my build I posted is about 20x better than a gtx650. Its a bottom end gaming card.
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March 3, 2013 8:48:03 PM

I've been experimenting with different options and I was looking at Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 Ti but Radeon HD 7850 is only $50 more. If its truly that much better than this falls into one of those upgrades I'm willing to spend more on.
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 8:49:28 PM

The 7870xt is basically a 7950 that has been de-tuned to a 7930. It beast other 7870s by a decent amount. There is no comparison between a gtx650ti and an hd 7870xt.
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March 3, 2013 9:53:59 PM

I know of Newegg and Outlet PC, are there any other sites you'd recommend for purchasing computer parts? I'm customizing through iBuyPower to see what I can do, but also looking for parts online and using the options I'm given as a template for parts to look for. As an investment, I'd like to not need an upgrade for several years. Heck, I got 6 out of my eMachines so I don't mind spending more if it'll last a long time.
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March 3, 2013 10:16:49 PM

tiny voices said:
The 7870xt in my build I posted is about 20x better than a gtx650. Its a bottom end gaming card.

I never compared it to a 7870! I said IT WORKS.
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March 3, 2013 10:23:54 PM

TKO3rnd said:
I know of Newegg and Outlet PC, are there any other sites you'd recommend for purchasing computer parts? I'm customizing through iBuyPower to see what I can do, but also looking for parts online and using the options I'm given as a template for parts to look for. As an investment, I'd like to not need an upgrade for several years. Heck, I got 6 out of my eMachines so I don't mind spending more if it'll last a long time.

I suggest Microcenter. It has crazy good deals, except it sometimes does not have all the parts others have. For example; the i5 3570k is 180 dollars, same to a lower i5 in another store. a GTX 660 is 219 dollars with 10 dollar MIR! It is a very good place to buy parts as long as they have it. And also, at first i was looking at ibuypower to by a pc, but after a couple videos, research and thinking, i realized that it is much better building it myself. If you don't want to upgrade than i suggest getting a high end GPU and reliable parts that you believe that will not break down.
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March 3, 2013 10:27:25 PM

Blue_Toaster said:
I suggest Microcenter. It has crazy good deals, except it sometimes does not have all the parts others have. For example; the i5 3570k is 180 dollars, same to a lower i5 in another store. a GTX 660 is 219 dollars with 10 dollar MIR! It is a very good place to buy parts as long as they have it. And also, at first i was looking at ibuypower to by a pc, but after a couple videos, research and thinking, i realized that it is much better building it myself. If you don't want to upgrade than i suggest getting a high end GPU and reliable parts that you believe that will not break down.


How much better is a GTX 660 compared to an i5 3570K?
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March 3, 2013 10:47:18 PM

TKO3rnd said:
How much better is a GTX 660 compared to an i5 3570K?

:)  A GTX 660 is a graphics card. An i5 is a processor. Both are really good for gaming, the 660 is on par with a 7870/7850.
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 3, 2013 10:50:22 PM

It is slightly worse than an hd7870 and decently better than an hd7850.
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March 3, 2013 10:52:41 PM

tiny voices said:
It is slightly worse than an hd7870 and decently better than an hd7850.

That's why i said 7850/7870. :>(
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March 3, 2013 11:12:20 PM

Blue_Toaster said:
:)  A GTX 660 is a graphics card. An i5 is a processor. Both are really good for gaming, the 660 is on par with a 7870/7850.


See what I'm talking about? I knew that but its all just melting together in my head...
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March 3, 2013 11:23:59 PM

Yeah it gets confusing. Oh and do you live near a microcenter?
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March 3, 2013 11:26:19 PM

Unfortunately the nearest Microcenters are in Chicago which is about a 2.5 hour drive or St. Louis which is also about 2.5 hours.
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March 3, 2013 11:27:45 PM

I see. Some items are in store only so that might be a problem... The next best thing is newegg.
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March 3, 2013 11:46:37 PM

I have Newegg, OutletPC, and Microcenter all tabbed so I'm going to customize on iBuyPower, then once I'm done customizing to what I want, I'm going to search for each part through those three sites so that I can compare. It just dawned on me I have a tax refund coming so I guess my budget has increased a bit :bounce: 
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 4, 2013 4:08:27 AM

You should get low profile RAM

Other than that, it looks great.
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March 4, 2013 4:26:18 AM

I edited my last message and added another build. I'll definitely look into changing the RAM as well as adding a network card.
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 4, 2013 4:28:13 AM

They will both be basically the same. I prefer intel. The xfx PSU is better than that Antec. Both will work though. Its 6 of one half a dozen of the other at this point.

They will both be good, solid builds.

Make sure to get low profile RAM
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March 4, 2013 4:35:29 AM

What low profile would you recommend? I was simply going to go cheaper but Corsair has the cheapest as well. Also, any recommendations on network cards? I can slowly make my way through processors, video cards, etc... but honestly I have no idea what I'm looking at with network cards. :( 
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March 4, 2013 10:00:45 PM

TKO3rnd said:
What low profile would you recommend? I was simply going to go cheaper but Corsair has the cheapest as well. Also, any recommendations on network cards? I can slowly make my way through processors, video cards, etc... but honestly I have no idea what I'm looking at with network cards. :( 

The second build is Better, here is a really cool case for it (cheap too) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
For ram, http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?bop=And&...
Choose whichever one you like, they mostly are low profile and pretty cheap.
Network cards: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Its cheap, and gets the job done
Don't need too, but this is another good board http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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March 4, 2013 11:03:25 PM

I think I may keep the case I have since its slightly cheaper. I had already changed my RAM and it looks like the one I changed to is on that list, so I think I'm good there. How would this do for a network card: http://www.pcpartpicker.com/part/rosewill-wired-network... ? Its extremely cheap but I'm hoping the price doesn't match its efficiency/durability. Would it be wise to get a better one?
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March 4, 2013 11:10:03 PM

TKO3rnd said:
I think I may keep the case I have since its slightly cheaper. I had already changed my RAM and it looks like the one I changed to is on that list, so I think I'm good there. How would this do for a network card: http://www.pcpartpicker.com/part/rosewill-wired-network... ? Its extremely cheap but I'm hoping the price doesn't match its efficiency/durability. Would it be wise to get a better one?

That's a LAN card, it's not wireless, pretty much useless since most boards have LAN already. ( at least the one i showed you does )
Where do you plan on putting your PC? If it's close to your modem/router you won't need wireless and you could hook up the router to the port in the MB.
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March 4, 2013 11:21:15 PM

Good point, I'm glad I came here for input. I'm moving into a new apartment at the end of this month and I believe there are ports in all the rooms, either way my PC can be moved close enough. Realistically, I don't need to worry about network cards. Now that I think about it I know I'll need some things once I move in so I can always pick one up later if need be.

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/Hzah
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 1:36:28 AM

Don't get a prebuilt.

Your build looks great.
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March 5, 2013 5:13:34 AM



I messed around with those bundles and unfortunately if I go with what I want, I'll end up spending more; so I think I'm going to stick with this http://pcpartpicker.com/p/Hzah

My dad is a programmer and although he said his building days are over, he did mention he can help me through it. Plus I have a friend who builds and he said he'd do it for me, so luckily I have a couple options. I'm going to start ordering tomorrow. Thanks BlueToaster and TinyVoices for all the help and input. Perhaps I'll upload a pic when its complete.
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 5:14:52 AM

Its a good, solid build. You will definitely be happy with it.
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March 5, 2013 6:19:39 AM

So I've purchased most of the parts and I'm currently at OutletPC about to buy the Seagate Barracuda Hard Drive when I noticed some FAQ's at the bottom. According to one question asked, customer service says this hard drive does not come with Sata cables....
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a c 101 U Graphics card
March 5, 2013 6:20:17 AM

The motherboard comes with the sata cables. No HDD comes with cables.
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March 5, 2013 6:22:56 AM

tiny voices said:
The motherboard comes with the sata cables. No HDD comes with cables.


Ok good. I was searching around to see if they came with any other parts. Pretty much the only thing I'm worried about at this point is getting all the parts then realizing I'm missing something...
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March 5, 2013 9:16:12 AM

Blue_Toaster said:
That's a LAN card, it's not wireless, pretty much useless since most boards have LAN already. ( at least the one i showed you does )
Where do you plan on putting your PC? If it's close to your modem/router you won't need wireless and you could hook up the router to the port in the MB.


And as it turns out I will need a wireless card for a few weeks. I've been looking through some PCI-E network cards and Rosewill has some affordable ones, but a few reviews I've read mentioned some problems with Rosewills. Any recommendations?
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