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System Builder Marathon, August 2012: $500 Gaming PC

Graphics Card And Hard Drive

Graphics Card: MSI N560GTX-M2D1GD5 GeForce GTX 560

Compared to the GeForce GTX 560 Ti we used last quarter, today's GeForce GTX 560 has one of the GF114 GPU's eight Streaming Multiprocessors (SMs) disabled, resulting in a loss of 48 CUDA cores and eight texture units.

This model from MSI maintains Nvidia's reference GPU clock rate of 810 MHz and 1002 MHz (4008 MT/s) memory frequency. Moreover, it offers dual DVI outputs and a mini-HDMI connector.

MSI's bundle includes printed quick-start and installation guides, a software DVD, a DVI-to-HDMI adapter, a DVI-to-VGA adapter, and a pair of Molex power adapters, one of which our build requires. There's a $40 mail-in-rebate on the card right now, which makes it a stellar buy.

Read Customer Reviews of MSI's N560GTX-M2D1GD5

Hard Drive: Western Digital Caviar Blue WD5000AAKX 500 GB

Offering us the most storage capacity for $65, Western Digital’s 500 GB WD5000AAKX impresses with a 7200 RPM spindle speed, a SATA 6Gb/s interface, and 16 MB of cache.

Read Customer Reviews of Western Digital's WD5000AAKX 500 GB Hard Drive

  • crisan_tiberiu
    so, looks like 500$ (Euro in europe :P) its enaugh to play any modern game that is trown on the market... ty consoles :P
    Reply
  • itzsnypah
    I think it would be interesting if next quarter for your Budget PC you try to bring the performance per watt as high as you can while still maintaining an enjoyable gaming experience. Something like a G620+HD7750/70 with a high efficiency PSU such as Rosewill CAPSTONE 450.

    Ever since I read the 7950B/7970GE review on here/anand performance per watt for me has been a priority when selecting components.
    Reply
  • mayankleoboy1
    I think it would be interesting if next quarter for your Budget PC you try to bring the performance per watt as high as you can while still maintaining an enjoyable gaming experience. Something like a G620+HD7750/70 with a high efficiency PSU such as Rosewill CAPSTONE 450.

    On the contrary, for a 500$ build, energy consumption and heat should be least concerns. Tweaking, overclocking and extracting the last possible performance from your hardware are the primary concerns of a 500$ gaming build. Even after HEAVY overclocking, you wont get 50W over the stock settings.
    Reply
  • sam_fisher
    mayankleoboy1On the contrary, for a 500$ build, energy consumption and heat should be least concerns. Tweaking, overclocking and extracting the last possible performance from your hardware are the primary concerns of a 500$ gaming build. Even after HEAVY overclocking, you wont get 50W over the stock settings.
    One may presume that someone after a $500 build is on a budget and hence doesn't want higher power consumption from overclocking.
    Reply
  • yyk71200
    Well, considering that I already have 3570K with GTX570, I'll be interested only in either $2000 PC or a graphic card from a $1000 PC.
    Reply
  • loops
    At least I can take less heat for recommending b75 mobo...
    Reply
  • itzsnypah
    mayankleoboy1On the contrary, for a 500$ build, energy consumption and heat should be least concerns. Tweaking, overclocking and extracting the last possible performance from your hardware are the primary concerns of a 500$ gaming build. Even after HEAVY overclocking, you wont get 50W over the stock settings.According to the performance summary and efficiency page of this article Overclocking the GPU had a 13%(average according to this article) increase in power consumption for an extra 2% (average) performance. That seems like the opposite thing I'm talking about.

    Overclocking is good for performance per dollar, not performance per watt.
    Reply
  • abegnale
    @Paul Henningsen,
    Why not substitute some existing parts for either an I3-2100 and/or an eVGA 560 Superclocked?
    Reply
  • giovanni86
    Nice, looking forward to the next builds. Some times OC does yield its advantages, those few frames can help and have helped me in games running smoothly or just over 30FPS. I honestly don't see why people are concerned with power, PC's don't cost much to run even overclocked. Unless your poor or working at McDonald's, then i see no reason why power is an issue unless otherwise stated. This whole green thing is a pain in the ass. I'm power hungry sorry.
    Reply
  • mayankleoboy1
    ^ there are no existing parts. This is a new build :)
    Reply