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I5 2500k + 7850 1GB vs i5 3550 + GTX660 Build (£500/$750 budget)

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December 21, 2012 9:33:50 PM

I've made two intel builds and they both come within my budget. I've made a build with the i5 3550 which I'm not going to overclock and just using the stock cooler. And I've paired it up with an MSI GTX 660 2GB. For my 2nd build I've gone with an i5 2500k with an OK aftermarket cooler (I'm not going to be overclocking like crazy) but to keep it in the price range I've had to lower my GPU to an XFX Radeon 7850 with 1GB memory.

Would that i5 2500k build last me for just about maybe 6-8 months and then I could upgrade that GPU when I have the money? And which one would perform better at this moment in time? I'm going to be playing games like Guild Wars 2, Gary's Mod, Planetside 2 and maybe Battlefield 3. Thank you.

First the 2500k/7850 Build:

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor
CPU Cooler: Zalman CNPS5X Performa CPU Cooler
Motherboard: MSI Z77A-G41 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
Video Card: XFX Radeon HD 7850 1GB Video Card
Case: Xigmatek ASGARD PRO (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case
Power Supply: XFX 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply


Now the 3550/660 Build:

CPU: Intel Core i5-3550 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor
Motherboard: MSI B75MA-P45 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard
Memory: Mushkin Blackline 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card
Case: Xigmatek ASGARD PRO (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 500W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply
a b B Homebuilt system
December 21, 2012 9:40:26 PM

The card is better with the 660 however the CPU is better with the 2500k it has more room. You don't seem to be so hot on OC'ing so your 2nd build may be the better of the two.
December 21, 2012 9:49:24 PM

I think so to, to be honest I don't want all the hassle of keeping temps low while OC'ing. Thanks.
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December 21, 2012 9:52:05 PM

+1 to bigshootr8 on that.

EDIT: Other thing that occurs to me is that you'll see no difference between the 3450 and 3550. May as well save a few quid.
a b B Homebuilt system
December 21, 2012 9:58:30 PM

Yea the only things I would change would be the PSU. I know its corsair but I would get something in the tx,hx, or ax lines. Also xfx has some killer prices on good seasonic power supplies in the 550 core and the 650 core/pro series.
December 21, 2012 10:07:51 PM

I think I'll change my CPU to a 3470 its a near as good processor a .1 clock slower. And up my PSU to a 550W or even 600W just for that extra bit of room in the future.
a b B Homebuilt system
December 21, 2012 10:12:05 PM

A wise choice. I think its better for you to have a better quality psu then the difference in clock speed with the 3470 and the 3550
December 21, 2012 10:16:07 PM

Big +1 to that - smart choice :-)
December 21, 2012 10:32:26 PM

Okay this is what my final build looks like. Changed my processor to an i5-3470 and I just love the look of the Vengeance and PC Gamer (my favourit-ist magazine in the world) has always reviewed that model very highly so I'm going to go with that for the memory. Finally I've also changed the PSU to a 600W Corsair, there was a 550W XFX but I just feel a lot more secure going with the Corsair and all of this fits just nice into my budget, thanks very much the both of you. :')

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor (£145.20 @ Aria PC)
Motherboard: MSI B75MA-P45 Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard (£45.30 @ Scan.co.uk)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£33.85 @ Amazon UK)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£35.94 @ Aria PC)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card (£159.95 @ Aria PC)
Case: Xigmatek ASGARD PRO (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case (£34.68 @ CCL Computers)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 600W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply (£52.77 @ Ebuyer)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer (£12.98 @ Scan.co.uk)
Total: £520.67
a b B Homebuilt system
December 21, 2012 11:34:06 PM

What is the pricing difference between the tx and the builders series I would feel safer recommending that over the builder series.
December 22, 2012 9:44:38 AM

This looks awesome :-) I used to feel the same way about these brands (it's why I have a Corsair now, and I'll admit it has been rock solid). But when I bought it, I didn't have the knowledge I have now about the various brands vs manufacturers and the fact Corsair don't even manufacture PSUs, and certainly don't use the same manufacturer to supply all their models. XFX on the other hand use Seasonic exclusively, and Seasonic are the best in the industry.

Other than that, only thing I'd change is the writer. It's a minor detail and this is probably the 857th time I've said it now (because PC Part Picker ALWAYS chooses the Lite-On) but I've owned Lite-On writers and they burn a lot of coasters. Only optical drive company I've ever used that has never let me down is Samsung (and I've used Sony, Plextor, Pioneer... stuff I'd have considered higher quality than Samsung!).
December 22, 2012 10:24:15 AM

CX series does it exactly what it says it does, spending more money is completely pointless and really terrible advice
a b B Homebuilt system
December 22, 2012 4:30:02 PM

I'm advising he not get a builders series because its not using what Corsair is known for there strong Seasonic power supplies or are you someone who believes all there power supplies have Seasonic in the cheap power supplies they use CWT. The one item that you shouldn't go cheap on and morons on here still advise people do.
December 22, 2012 5:54:31 PM

Haha yeah... looks like spentshells didn't read the thread properly. XFX are Seasonic-built and very reasonably-priced (generally moreso than Corsair infact).
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