$1400 gaming rig - your expertise appreciated

As the title suggests, im building a new computer soley for gaming and I have $1400 to do so. I currently already have the power supply (Antec Neopower 480w), DVD-burner, monitor, and hard drive. However I could really use your help on the remaining choices.

Here is what I had in mind:

Lian Li V1000 - $199
DFI LanParty Ultra-D - $150
Athlon64 3200+ (Venice) - $190
BFG 7800GTX OC - $535
OCZ 1GB Value PC3200 - $109

Total: $1184

This leaves me about $220 that I can still spend on the computer if need be. Of couse, I wouldn't mind saving money if I really don't need to spend it on any other parts.

I was also thinking of buying the new Zalman CNPS9500 for $75 when it comes out to help me OC the CPU.

As it stands stock, will the CPU be the bottleneck for my performance?

Your advice extremely appreciated.
14 answers Last reply
More about 1400 gaming expertise appreciated
  1. For the value I was going to get <A HREF="http://shop3.outpost.com/product/4177663?site=sr:SEARCH:MAIN_RSLT_PG" target="_new">this</A>

    Regarding the CPU bottleneck, should I spend less on a video card (say, a 7800GT instead) and use the extra money on a faster processor?
  2. Im with Wusy, absolutely NO! The CPU would be after the Video Card, RAM, and PSU on my list of priorities.

    ASUS P5WD2 Premium
    Intel 3.73 EE @ 5.6Ghz
    XMS2 DDR2 @ 1180Mhz

    <A HREF="http://valid.x86-secret.com/records.php?PHPSESSID=792e8f49d5d9b8a4d1ad6f40ca029756" target="_new">#2 CPUZ</A>
    SuperPI 25secs
  3. Agree with Wusy, too. Consider getting a 74GB Raptor if you don't already have one...

    <font color=red>You're a boil on the arse of progress - don't make me squeeze you!</font color=red>
  4. i dont mean to crap on your parade, but in googling to see if that case came with a PSU, i found it for 20bucks cheaper then you listed it. So i take it those prices are shipped?

    V1000 for 176 before shipping (Xoxide)
    DFI 3 places under 140 shipped (Newegg, monarch, chiefvalue)

    So that should save you some money right there.
    I would use some of the extra 220 to buy <A HREF="http://www2.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820227211" target="_new">this</A> I bought these at 160 and i thought i was getting a very good deal. they run perfectly with 2-2-2-5 timings at DDR400 at 2.9V....with the DFI board you could have it running at ~DDR510 with 2-2-2-5 timtings for your OC'n.

    DO you already have the DVD-burner, monitor, and hard drive or you just have them picked out? either way what are they, or what are they going to be?

    Chaintech VNF3-250/A64 2800+/1GB(512x2) OCZ VX GOLD 2-2-2-5/BFG 6800GT/Thermaltake 420W/WD 200GB/Maxtor 300GB
  5. The Lian Li are nice cases but this is just way too much to pay for a case on this rig. I usually will suggest a Lian Li if the build is over 2k, but this is just overkill. Money better spent elsewhere. I think I would spend the money you save on some better RAM if you are OCing, a good PSU and cooling solution if you are OCing hard.

    <b><font color=red>Go date P4man or something, bye!</font color=red><b>
  6. Check out my case...
    <A HREF="http://www.directron.com/201tblk.html" target="_new"> SuperFlower 201B $72 </A>
    Great deal for a great aluminum case...

    <pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
    And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
    So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
  7. I have to agree with everyone else here. The case does seem to be a bit of an over kill (although I just spent $170 on an antec P180 cause it was the only one whose look I liked). As well, some better RAM to OC with is a definite plus. A 2x512 kit of OCZ EL Platinum DDR400 Rev 2 has a good performance / price ratio, with the only stuff I've seen OC better being the Gold VX sticks. I'll be getting my new system with the VX sticks in within the next couple of weeks, so I'll let you know how they turn out.
  8. Well, it sounds like everyone is in agreement that the case is too much. I guess I knew this already, but for some reason I was really set on buying a nice Lian Li. Upon reconsideration, I really should worry more about the components inside the case.

    From a friend who works in a computer retail store, I can get a new Antec Super Lanboy for $67 and a Zalman 7000-cu for $34. (or any other common retail hsf or case at cost). Doing this would free up almost another $150 for faster memory / cpu. What do you guys think?

    Also, what type of CPU would you folks reccomend getting? Many people seem to think that getting anything over a 3000/3200 which can be overclocked is a waste of money. Others say the opposite. I'm very confused in this catagory.
  9. I don' tknow, I just bought myself a 3700. I'm not huge on overclocking and i'd rather buy smething thats a better performer right from the start than start fiddling and breaking things.

    but i'm debating OCing now cause it would just RULE. I got that HUGE zalman cooler with the fins

    <A HREF="http://www.zalmanusa.com/usa/product/view.asp?idx=145&code=005" target="_new">CNPS7700-Cu</A>
    and for my 6800GT I put this on
    <A HREF="http://www.zalmanusa.com/usa/product/view.asp?idx=150&code=013" target="_new">VF700-AlCu</A>

    Hoping to have some impressive OCing numbers eventually.

    but on stock, my system put up 4831 on 3DMARK05
  10. Do you not like that case I quoted? It is of exceptional quality and plenty of expansion room. You can even save $10 if you do not like/want the acrylic panels.
    It has a slide in mobo tray, 5 harddrive removable cage (hidden), 4 - 5.5" bays, 3 - 3.5" bays and an air filter.

    <pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
    And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
    So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
  11. It actually looks pretty good. Are the 80mm fans noisy? Also, what is the difference between a Neon light and a Cold Cathode light? How many should I get to adequately light the case?
  12. If you're an overclocker, there's no point in buying a 3500+, 3700+, 3800+, 4000+, etc. (3500 is debatable, and some want the extra cache of the 3700, but in general...) You buy a 3200+ or thereabouts and overclock it. If you're an extreem overclocker, you'll buy an FX-something (again, in general - I guess I'm stereotyping :eek: ).

    For 'normal users' it depends on your budget. Spec out something with a 3200+ and put your money into the video card - until you're on the 7800GT or similar, then if you still have add'l cash, bump up the RAM (unless you've already got high quality RAM) and then CPU. The 3200+ is good today, but if you want more longevity and can afford it, get the 3500+ or the 3800+. the 1mb cache 3700+/4000+ san diego cores don't seem to be worth the premium - the extra cache doesn't give you as much performance as an extra 200mhz.

    If you're not overclocking, get the retail boxed CPU. It comes with a decent HSF for just a few bucks more than OEM, and that HSF is plenty good - even for a mild overclock (10% or so). If you're overclocking, the 7000cu is a good HSF. If your mobo can accept it, the XP-120c with a good fan is a better cooler (or maybe its just as good but quieter?), followed by the XP90c, then (debatably better than the xp90) the Zalman 7700, then the 7000. Depending on who you talk to they'll pick the XP120/XP90 over the Zalman 7700/7000, or vice-versa, though generally the XP wins because you can add your own fan to fit your needs.


    <font color=blue>Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside the dog its too dark to read.
    -- Groucho Marx</font color=blue>
  13. The fans are very quiet. I have no neon lights. Only the lighted Gigabyte 3D CPU Cooler Pro and 4 DRAM sticks of Corsair XMS Pro memory with LED's ;)

    <pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
    And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
    So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
  14. Where did you steal yours from?

    <pre><font color=red>°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°`°¤o \\// o¤°`°¤o,¸¸¸,o¤°
    And the sign says "You got to have a membership card to get inside" Huh
    So I got me a pen and paper And I made up my own little sign</pre><p></font color=red>
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