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First PC build (gaming) for around £800

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May 10, 2012 9:21:19 PM

Approximate Purchase Date: In a few weeks - a month

Budget Range: Around £800

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming (eg BF3, Max Payne 3, Skyrim, GTA V (if/when it comes to PC), internet browsing, word processing for uni etc

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Reputable UK-based sites like overclockers.co.uk

Country: England

Parts Preferences: I've used Intel CPUs and Nvidia graphics cards in pre-built PCs basically all my life, so I'd be comfortable with that. I'd happily follow any other advice, though.

Overclocking: Maybe in the future when it gets too slow

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe in the future when it gets too slow (recommended?)

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments:

Case - I don't want to spend too much on it, but I'd like good build quality with some features like easy cable management, no use of tools. No bling or window necessary.

Motherboard: I don't know much at all about motherboards, please enlighten me.

CPU / GPU: Going to uni so it needs to last as long as possible. I want to get high settings, but some options (eg AA) aren't necessary, I can make sacrifices for better performance.

HDD / SSD: I think I can live without an SSD. In terms of HDD capacity, 750GB would probably be enough.

Monitor: Haven't chosen one yet but it'll probably be 1080p, 21.5 inches or smaller (size of my current monitor). Can be excluded from the original budget.

More about : build gaming 800

May 11, 2012 5:53:22 AM

I realize i built this on newegg which is in usa but I am too much use to it :)  this is what i could come up with https://secure.newegg.com/WishList/MySavedWishDetail.as... i do realize it breaks your budget but there are no other 6 series nvidia card out there that are lower than 670 so you could just go down to 5 series or wait for cheaper models of 6 series. and i just realized i didn't add a power supply so this build is probably above the price range now :( 
May 11, 2012 9:10:40 AM

What parts are not required? do you have a mouse, keyboard and OS or are these required as well?
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May 11, 2012 9:32:38 AM

Here y'go:

CPU: i5-3570K (£172.98)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z68-V Pro (£134.02)
GPU: MSI 2GB AMD 7850 (£198.92)
RAM: 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance (£39.36)
HDD: 1TB Seagate Barracuda 7200rpm (£68.38)
PSU: 600W Corsair Gaming Series GS600 (£58.78)
CPU Cooler: Coolermaster Hyper 612S (£34.33)
Chassis: Corsair Carbide 300R (£53.16)

TOTAL: £769.52 (Scan.co.uk)

The CPU is the successor to the Sandybridge i5-2500K. I'm always torn between the 2500K and the 3570K as the Ivybridge improvement is minimal for a gaming system, and it is hotter when overclocked. However, it is a newer component. The motherboard is reasonably high-end, but I've chosen it as it'll have a lot of overclocking features. It also supports both Crossfire and SLI. I've thrown in that cooler for any overclocking you do...should be plenty. There's also the Hyper-212 and Hyper-TX3 which are cheaper and will be sufficient. However, just to repeat, Ivy is hotter when overclocking than Sandy so you may want to consider that.

The GPU I've picked is actually AMD...the competing 28nm Nvidia Kepler GPU is not out yet, as esco_sid has said. I'd recommend either waiting for the equivalent Nvidia card to come out or go with AMD; IMHO, going with a 5xx Nvidia GPU now wouldn't be ideal for a new system.

RAM...'nuff said. 8GB is plenty for a gaming system. Same with the HDD. The PSU is good quality...Corsair come at a bit of a premium, but I didn't see one at that wattage from a viable alternative vendor. The chassis is good quality and has good cable routing features as well as airflow.

If you need an OS, I'd skinny back on the CPU cooler...you can save £20 there. You may even get a decent PSU for the £50 mark if you look about, so £30 total? That should get you Windows 7 within your budget.
May 11, 2012 9:47:39 AM

Forgot to add an optical drive...unless you're watching Blurays, a DVD player will set you back £12.
May 11, 2012 1:54:49 PM

diellur said:
Here y'go:

CPU: i5-3570K (£172.98)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z68-V Pro (£134.02)
GPU: MSI 2GB AMD 7850 (£198.92)
RAM: 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance (£39.36)
HDD: 1TB Seagate Barracuda 7200rpm (£68.38)
PSU: 600W Corsair Gaming Series GS600 (£58.78)
CPU Cooler: Coolermaster Hyper 612S (£34.33)
Chassis: Corsair Carbide 300R (£53.16)

TOTAL: £769.52 (Scan.co.uk)

The CPU is the successor to the Sandybridge i5-2500K. I'm always torn between the 2500K and the 3570K as the Ivybridge improvement is minimal for a gaming system, and it is hotter when overclocked. However, it is a newer component. The motherboard is reasonably high-end, but I've chosen it as it'll have a lot of overclocking features. It also supports both Crossfire and SLI. I've thrown in that cooler for any overclocking you do...should be plenty. There's also the Hyper-212 and Hyper-TX3 which are cheaper and will be sufficient. However, just to repeat, Ivy is hotter when overclocking than Sandy so you may want to consider that.

The GPU I've picked is actually AMD...the competing 28nm Nvidia Kepler GPU is not out yet, as esco_sid has said. I'd recommend either waiting for the equivalent Nvidia card to come out or go with AMD; IMHO, going with a 5xx Nvidia GPU now wouldn't be ideal for a new system.

RAM...'nuff said. 8GB is plenty for a gaming system. Same with the HDD. The PSU is good quality...Corsair come at a bit of a premium, but I didn't see one at that wattage from a viable alternative vendor. The chassis is good quality and has good cable routing features as well as airflow.

If you need an OS, I'd skinny back on the CPU cooler...you can save £20 there. You may even get a decent PSU for the £50 mark if you look about, so £30 total? That should get you Windows 7 within your budget.


So the CPU cooler would only be necessary if I overclocked it? Could I add it later if I decide to overclock in the future?

For the OS, should I get Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit? (this should be included in the budget)

No bluray player needed, is there anything to look out for when getting a DVD drive or are they basically all the same?

I will need a mouse, keyboard and monitor but they won't be part of the budget.
May 11, 2012 4:12:14 PM

I'd agree with most of diellur's build, but would change one or two things:

if buying from SCAN i'd change:

the case to the fractal Design core 3000

motherboard to the standard ASUS p8z77-V as the pro offers little more over it (2 usb 3 ports and one more 4 pin fan connector) and is £20 more.

PSU to an XFX Core 550W, will be more than enough unless you really plan to dual card in the future.

CPU cooler can be got later, but it's more convenient to get one now.

Yes windows 7 HM 64bit is the way to go. If you're a student you can pick one up more cheaply but can't remember where.

EDIT

if you make these changes (and leave the cooler out and buy Windows and DVDRW) the total cost with VAT and P&P is £801.96 a little over budget but not much at all
May 12, 2012 4:36:22 PM

+1 Metal Orient.

The chassis comes in some part down to personal preference. Fractal Design are also very good, so swings and roundabouts.

Good shout with the motherboard; might be good to check how good the P8Z77-V is at OCing v the Pro before you spring for one or the other. Might not be important to you though.

Let us know what you go for in the end. :) 
May 13, 2012 2:41:32 PM

I'm thinking two heads are better than one so I'll go with the 'combined' build of:

CPU: i5-3570K (£172.98)
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z77-V (£131.72)
GPU: MSI 2GB AMD 7850 (£198.92)
RAM: 2x4GB Corsair Vengeance (£39.36)
HDD: 1TB Seagate Barracuda 7200rpm (£68.38)
PSU: XFX Core 550W (£47.46)
Chassis: Fractal Design core 3000 (£49.49)

Which would be £717.80

Then there's the matter of Windows 7 and the DVD drive. I assume you've given the price of the OEM version of Windows. Is that recommended or should I go with the retail version which costs £40 more (£110 is the best price I've found).

Also, the DVD drives sold on Scan.co.uk are OEM versions, does that mean I'd have to buy extras like cables to install it? I have an old PC with 2 disc drives which I was considering on using. Could I do that instead?

Thanks for all the help.
May 13, 2012 4:05:24 PM

Get both OEM, while the OEM version of windows is technically against the terms of agreement for someone to buy and use on their own PC i can't say i've heard Microsoft doing anything about it. better than people pirating it right?

OEM for DVD drive is fine as all the cables you'll need will come with PSU and Mobo. Although by all means try the other 2 disc drives first, just make sure they're sata and not IDE first.
May 18, 2012 2:49:28 PM

Update: I could up the budget to £1000 if I wanted. What would be worth upgrading if I spend £200 more?
May 18, 2012 4:19:27 PM

Well you could go for a 6 series nividia gpu, I'm buying the gtx 670 for my new build and it looks pretty solid from what I've heard (nice fps on BF3 too).
May 19, 2012 5:18:33 PM

Would a GTX 670 work with this current build, no need for any changes?
May 20, 2012 11:24:14 AM

No need for any changes
!