AMD Forward compatible Budget build < $700

Hello all,

Long time listener first time caller :D

So, I have scraped and saved a little money together to finally build a new PC. My current one is well out of date and really not much of a gamer. Its an old Dell Optiplex 745 That I managed to franken-part a few pieces to get it somewhat gameable. Alas, while she has served me well its time I put her to pasture as a media server before she kicks.

I need a little help trying to budget my next upgrade. I want this machine to be somewhat forward compatible and have chosen to go AMD to save a little. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Approximate Purchase Date: e.g.: By the end of next week


Budget Range: (e.g.: 300-400) 600-700 (im close to a microcenter so I can bypass some shipping fees


System Usage from Most to Least Important: (e.g.: Folding@Home, gaming, surfing the internet, watching movies)


Are you buying a monitor: No

Parts to Upgrade: Everything but the HDD

Do you need to buy OS: Yes (win7 preferred) heard rumors about windows Blue... but waiting

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Microcenter, Newegg, Tigerdirect

Location: City, State/Region, Country - Dayton, Ohio - US

Parts Preferences: AMD / Asus primarily for the MBoard

Overclocking: Yes

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe

Your Monitor Resolution: 1600x900 (may upgrade and run dual monitors later)

Additional Comments: I would like to have a fairly quiet rig, as I will be using this machine from home and have to contact clients at times. Below are a list of the main programs I will be running:
VMware
Adobe CS3 - Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, After Effects* (*not often or for large projects)
normal browsing
Star trek Online
World of Tanks
Battle field 2 (possibly 3)
IL2
Possibly other titles I have not tried yet

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading: Current rig is about cooked.

**********************************

Here is what I have put together thus far:

CPU: Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition 3.4GHz Boxed Processor - $79.99
Microcenter

Heatsink: Hyper 212 EVO Universal CPU Cooler - $29.99
Microcenter

Motherboard: ASUS SABERTOOTH 990FX R2.0 AM3+ AMD 990FX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS - $179.99
Newegg

Note: I know this may be the killer in my budget but it seems to be a pretty solid board and is forward compatible. Although I hear they are soon to release a PCIe 3.0 version of the board :??:

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL - $55.99
Newegg

Note: is on Motherboards approved memory list ;)

Case: HAF912 Mid Tower ATX Computer Case - $57.99
Microcenter

**** Here is were I need help ****

Power Supply: I am clue less here - lots of reviews sorted through about effeciency and actual power - I am assuming that I need at minimum a 600W supply

Video Card: MSI R7770 PE1GD5/OC Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - $139.99
Newegg

Final notes: Any advice would be great. I look at this build as pretty forward thinking and capable. Eventually an a year I would upgrade it a bit more then use the parts in either a media server a secondary desktop for the kids (although they are getting a laptop which signals the beginning of the end, lol)

Thanks again, I look forward to your replies :D
6 answers Last reply
More about forward compatible budget build
  1. That board it good. but i think you would benefit more from getting a cheaper board and redistributing that money saved on cpu/gpu. For best performance. For your gaming bottleneck wont be the motherboard. But the processor and graphics card you are using.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor ($119.99 @ Microcenter)
    Motherboard: ASRock 970 EXTREME4 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($97.87 @ Newegg)
    Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($51.99 @ Newegg)
    Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition 2GB Video Card ($204.99 @ Newegg)
    Case: Cooler Master HAF 922 ATX Mid Tower Case ($95.98 @ Newegg)
    Power Supply: SeaSonic M12II 750W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($99.99 @ Newegg)
    Optical Drive: LG GH24NS95 DVD/CD Writer ($15.99 @ Newegg)
    Total: $686.80
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-03-08 17:18 EST-0500)
  2. You should pick up a after market cpu cooler as well. If you are overclocking. sorry forgot to add one.
  3. Here's a PC I built a while back for gaming. You can use it as a comparison.

    http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx?WishListNumber=25475127

    I wanted value, not maximum performance. Testing with both FarCry 3 and Battlefield 3 at maximum settings with AA at 2x and Anisotropic Filtering at 2x. FarCry 3 got 18 FPS and Battlefield 3 got 26 FPS. At High settings, both games were able to maintain 30+ FPS, which with motion blur, is all you ever really need. My GPU was rather weak for those games and I was surprised to get the performance that I got. And I'm an AMD fan, so lucking out and getting the AMD ram was nice. It's designed by AMD and manufactured by Patriot. Total price for this build (Including the $100 monitor, that's not on the wishlist) was $525. All in all, you should do fine with your build. Good luck.
  4. I might suggest a Intel based solution.
    For reference, a Phenom II X4 965 costs $80 and has a passmark cpu performance rating of 4336.
    By comparison, a intel i5-3470 will cost $150, with a rating of 7147.
    Since your apps can use lots of cpu power, you might consider what you get for $70 more.
    To offset that cost, you would only need a $60 socket 1155 motherboard and could use a stock cooler.

    A 500w psu will be able to handle a graphics card as good as a GTX670 or 7870.

    For photoshop, I would get a 16gb kit, and with intel speed does not matter.

    And... in a year, both amd and intel motherboards will likely be obsolete regardless.
  5. geofelt said:
    I might suggest a Intel based solution.
    For reference, a Phenom II X4 965 costs $80 and has a passmark cpu performance rating of 4336.
    By comparison, a intel i5-3470 will cost $150, with a rating of 7147.
    Since your apps can use lots of cpu power, you might consider what you get for $70 more.
    To offset that cost, you would only need a $60 socket 1155 motherboard and could use a stock cooler.

    A 500w psu will be able to handle a graphics card as good as a GTX670 or 7870.

    For photoshop, I would get a 16gb kit, and with intel speed does not matter.

    And... in a year, both amd and intel motherboards will likely be obsolete regardless.



    Intel's 1155 is going to be obsolete very soon now, the AM3+ platform may see another architecture change by the end of this year!
  6. That is my thinking on this build. AMD appears to be moving forward with their latest chips. It seems to me that the ivy bridge chips from intel will be the last of this series before coming out with a new socket chip all together.

    I really have my heard set on this ASUS Sabertooth board. Its forward compatible so say in a few months or toward the end of the year I can pickup a better FX chip in the pile driver series, or which is performing the best. I'm confident this CPU/Video card combo will work for my needs. I'm in no hurry to crank any games on high settings. I can run all of the games I have listed on a core duo 2.64 with a GT220 currently. I'm thinking I will see much better performance then I have now and it will work for me.

    I reeeeeallly considered going intel, but by them time I started looking into forward compatibility and all the bells and whistles the whirlwind of gotta have took over and I had build a 900+ rig lol.

    My main concern is the PSU and the Video card is secondary. I'm a bit confused about making sure I get the correct PSU for compatibility. I am also confused about ATI/Nividia. My understanding is that video cards have to be Nvidia/Intel and ATI/AMD cpu/card combo. Whats the scoop here as I have seen a few builds that to quote ghostbusters "cross the streams"
Ask a new question

Read More

New Build Compatibility Systems Product