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The Ultimate 'Build-A-PC' Thread. Complete With Pricings & Recommendations (06/06/10)


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#3151 Rhett

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 09:31 AM

See here I thought a graphics card was a graphics card but it seems like they are packaged up by third parties with fans and casing and such and that's why there are so many choices!

But yeah, I didn't know about that coupon code so that would make that a pretty sweet buy. Does that coupon work on the 2GB model? If so, I wonder if that isn't worth the $20-$30 extra.

Any comments on the Corsair Carbide 300R case? It isn't quite as cheap as it was when they put that build together in January.


It looks like a nice cheap case... I used one of two I had laying around, though I wish I bought a new one as this one barely worked. The code very likely does not work on the 2GB model. I did a lot of reading, and though 2GB (if the price is right) is better in the long run, it only matters significantly if you are going to be gaming at 1080p or higher resolutions OR are using multiple monitors at the same time, for gaming. I'm using an older LCD monitor that only goes up to 1440x900, myself, so I wasn't worried about that.

As for the heatsinks on the GPUs, yeah, there are a lot... There's typically up to three different heatsinks/cards from particular brands too... (a single fan, a dual fan [quieter and more efficent], and something like "Frozr" [MSI] or "Ice-Q" [Sapphire] that is newer and even more efficient, but more expensive) but it should only matter if reviews of that particular card say it's loud, gets hot easily, or both.

Edit: Also might help you to sign up at, and make the build yourself (or alterations) at www.pcpartpicker.com ... It helped me drastically. It automatically makes sure everything's compatible, and gives (usually accurate) pricing at multiple notable vendors.

Edited by Rhett, 26 May 2013 - 09:42 AM.

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#3152 io

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 10:05 AM

Yep, just did that:

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/106Qz

It is a little bit from 3 sources (you, the build on that other site I posted, and aShufflinZombie's build on the previous page of this thread).

I used your processor and cooler, the motherboard and memory from that link I posted, and then one of the power supplies you suggested. It seems like maybe I have a little too much of a power supply in there (650 for 334 estimated usage). Maybe I could go with the other one you mentioned (500W).

I also put in the hard drive and case from aShufflinZombie's build on the last page since it was a combo deal from Newegg (-$15). But I could just go with that Corsair 300R and the same or another HD.

I'm not seeing the coupon code on the XFX Double D 1GB and I'm pretty sure I added the right thing. So is there an additional discount there that expired soon? If so, I should bite on that at least while I think about the rest.

Edit: OK, according to this link it is a deal of the week and probably something I should just jump on:

http://techreport.co...-other-bargains

And also here:

http://promotions.ne...ex-landing.aspx

On the Newegg page it says promos end 5/27 - so that's like tomorrow (or day after since I still think of it as being Saturday night right now even though it is 3 am ;)).

But now I'm wondering if I'm going to spend $650+ on all of that and have to put it together and possibly deal with DOA parts and such (with no spares of any sort to do testing), why don't I just get something like this:

http://www.newegg.co...31&AID=10446076

Yeah it is $1049, but it seems significantly better than what I'm putting together... Or maybe not - the processor definitely seems better (or at least it is much more expensive) but is the 7850 a better card than the Nvidia Geforce GTX 650?

Edited by io, 26 May 2013 - 10:16 AM.


#3153 Rhett

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 10:13 AM

Yep, just did that:

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/106Qz

It is a little bit from 3 sources (you, the build on that other site I posted, and aShufflinZombie's build on the last page of this thread).

I used your processor and cooler, the motherboard and memory from that link I posted, and then one of the power supplies you suggested. It seems like maybe I have a little too much of a power supply in there (650 for 334 estimated usage). Maybe I could go with the other one you mentioned (500W).

I also put in the hard drive and case from aShufflinZombie's build on the last page since it was a combo deal from Newegg (-$15). But I could just go with that Corsair 300R and the same or another HD.

I'm not seeing the coupon code on the XFX Double D 1GB and I'm pretty sure I added the right thing. So is there an additional discount there that expired soon? If so, I should bite on that at least while I think about the rest.


Nice! The PSU wattage should be a tad higher (this GPU recommends 500W just for what-ifs) than you need, to account for changes in hardware, overclocking, and general PSU wear/etc. Can't go wrong with either one IMO. Corsair's an amazing brand, and apparently OCZ isn't bad either. You probably will enjoy the modular capability though (lets you unplug unnecessary/unused PSU cables that can clutter up the inside of the PC).

I can also recommend slightly better/faster RAM, for only a couple dollars more: Corsair Vengeance (2x4GB) - Exactly what I'm using. I'll also have two sticks for sale (as previously mentioned) if interested, sometime later next week I imagine.

As for the coupon code, it's not on the main GPU page, and you add it at checkout. It works, I just tested it when I posted it. Again, though, I have no idea when it expires. Really good deal. Also that AMD promotion supposedly ends on the 31st last I read.

HDD's up to you. Just stick with at least a 500W PSU from a highly reputable brand (and make sure you don't go below $45-$50 unless it's still one of those brands, or it can cause major issues potentially). I'd recommend my mobo, too, but it seems to have risen $15 since I ordered it.


Edit (just saw your edit.. ha!): That bundle is a tad overpriced... I mean, if you don't want to deal with building it and money's not an issue, why not? The 650's weaker than the 7850 (from my reading). If you want the absolute best deal, building yourself is the way to go. Can probably do a lot better for that price, though (including an i7).
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#3154 io

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 10:24 AM

OK, then, what about this one?

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16883229361

This seems like not a bad deal considering the components are pretty equivalent to what I'm putting together.

Some complaints in the reviews about heat issues and it shutting down sometimes. Ugh - I had that with a laptop once and it was annoying to say the least. I dunno... If I'm going to build one myself I'd be kicking myself not to get in on that video card by tomorrow...

And what motherboard did you use?

I added your memory in and I'm at about $648. Now the one advantage I have here is that I can get about half of the build from Amazon (where I have credit and can get more via Kindle cards at GS). The other half is at Newegg. Of course if I buy the pre-built one I am spending all real money at Newegg... So in some sense even if the do-it-yourself is a bit more expensive I'd actually be shelling out less money. (Another thing to consider is the prebuilt has mouse/keyboard and I would have to buy those as well. On the flip side I'd get the 3 games with the DIY).

Anyway, I'm off to play Sleeping Dogs on my PS3 and take a break from all this - will come back tomorrow afternoon to decide on the prebuilt vs. just picking up the video card now before the coupon expires.

Edited by io, 26 May 2013 - 10:44 AM.


#3155 Rhett

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 10:39 AM

OK, then, what about this one?

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16883229361

This seems like not a bad deal considering the components are pretty equivalent to what I'm putting together.

Some complaints in the reviews about heat issues and it shutting down sometimes. Ugh - I had that with a laptop once and it was annoying to say the least. I dunno... If I'm going to build one myself I'd be kicking myself not to get in on that video card by tomorrow...

And what motherboard did you use?


I used this Gigabyte GA-970A-UD3.

That doesn't seem bad, but the price is so low because of the video card. Also, it has Windows 8 (ewww). The PSU is probably a no-name brand, which is typically warned against from everything I've read. A bad one can burn out/die and take some or all of your computer parts with it. Judging by the price, and the fact it has Windows 8, there's reason to believe there they skimped somewhere (including the video card), and it's not good that you're reading about overheating and such...

I'm on Steam right now if you'd rather chat. I'm not the most experienced builder here, but since I just went through all this, I feel like I can be helpful at least. (Steam: Rhett816)
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#3156 io

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 10:47 AM

Like I said I'm heading to the PS3 now and then bed... But thanks for all the input. I'd be installing Windows 8 anyway, so no biggie there. I got it on my new work laptop a few months back and with Classic Shell I hardly notice it any more. And it does boot way faster than Win 7 so there's that ;).

But yeah, that pre-built probably has a bad PSU and not so great cooling (some of the reviewers fixed that themselves by modifying it).

#3157 io

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 10:02 PM

Wow - no thoughts from any other of you PC builders on that Newegg special? Was kind of hoping to get some feedback by now ;).

#3158 CaseyRyback

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 11:25 PM

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10gbn

I haven't ever used this site before, but that is what I put together io. I didn't add an aftermarket CPU cooler since I didn't know if you planned on overclocking. I am not in love with the mobo, but everything else in the build is pretty nice, especially for the price (30 dollars more than your build, and most of the components are better).

Edit: I changed out the video card for an extra ten bucks to upgrade from the Ghz edition of the 7870 to the LE edition.

Edit 2: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10guR

Same build with a better board (like 50 dollars more). I only included the first build with that board because it was super cheap and on combo.

Edited by CaseyRyback, 26 May 2013 - 11:58 PM.

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#3159 io

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 11:38 PM

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/10gbn

I haven't ever used this site before, but that is what I put together io. I didn't add an aftermarket CPU cooler since I didn't know if you planned on overclocking. I am not in love with the mobo, but everything else in the build is pretty nice, especially for the price (30 dollars more than your build, and most of the components are better). If you do plan on overclocking, there is an ASRock board that is available in a combo for like 50 more that would be worth getting.

Edit: I changed out the video card for an extra ten bucks to upgrade from the Ghz edition of the 7870 to the LE edition.


Interesting, thanks - with that one it looks like the processor has a coupon code that ends tomorrow. Is that video card loads better than the 7850? Unfortunately none of that build is available for the cheapest at Amazon. Though I could just buy the video card there and skip the rebate (but use my credit). Then again, NCIX has it for $230 and it comes with not only the game package I mentioned before but Crysis 3 as well. Amazon doesn't mention that - but are these games really just included with every one of these cards and the retailer doesn't matter?

#3160 CaseyRyback

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:00 AM

http://www.anandtech...level-up-bundle

AMD bumped up some of their stuff from the never settle reloaded program with a level up program.

I totally forgot about the amazang moniez (I used mine on a 670 FTW in Feb. when Crysis 3 came out).


The card I picked out uses more power and might be a little loud. It falls between the 7870 regular and the 7950.

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#3161 Rhett

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:09 AM

Interesting, thanks - with that one it looks like the processor has a coupon code that ends tomorrow. Is that video card loads better than the 7850? Unfortunately none of that build is available for the cheapest at Amazon. Though I could just buy the video card there and skip the rebate (but use my credit). Then again, NCIX has it for $230 and it comes with not only the game package I mentioned before but Crysis 3 as well. Amazon doesn't mention that - but are these games really just included with every one of these cards and the retailer doesn't matter?


They have a page for their AMD bundles:

http://www.amazon.co...rd_i=B007PJTNYS

I, personally, ordered everything except my video card from Amazon (Newegg for video card due to amazing deal)... Their return policy + customer service, and promptness in dealing with DOA parts helped assured me. Newegg's apparently "fine", but I trust Amazon fully. Also, they compete with Newegg on pricing on almost everything, I noticed.
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#3162 io

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:12 AM

^ Yeah, see, Amazon is missing the new "Level Up" promotion that would include both Crysis 3 and Tomb Raider for the card Casey mentioned. But maybe they just haven't updated their info and it will really come with those anyway.

http://www.anandtech...level-up-bundle

AMD bumped up some of their stuff from the never settle reloaded program with a level up program.

I totally forgot about the amazang moniez (I used mine on a 670 FTW in Feb. when Crysis 3 came out).


The card I picked out uses more power and might be a little loud. It falls between the 7870 regular and the 7950.


I'll have to think about it. $230 with all 4 of those games sounds pretty good. Amazon doesn't mention Crysis 3 so I'd be hesitant to spend $20 there (even with my credit). I'm sure I can get some of the other parts there anyway if they are only few bucks more.

Again, TOO MANY choices!

#3163 CaseyRyback

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:18 AM

Amazon just gives you a code. AMD gives out the games so you should be fine since it satisfies the new criteria. Amazon just hasnt updated their website.

#3164 io

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 12:36 AM

Amazon just gives you a code. AMD gives out the games so you should be fine since it satisfies the new criteria. Amazon just hasnt updated their website.


You mean Amazon gives you a code for AMD and then they provide the goods? If so, I'd go with Amazon for that card then!

#3165 aShufflinZombie

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 02:29 PM

With two mods in here already, could a CAG have permission to make a PC component/accessory trading thread?

I realize that this isn't the trading forum but I'm afraid that it may get lost in the shuffle in the main forum.

#3166 io

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 11:20 PM

With two mods in here already, could a CAG have permission to make a PC component/accessory trading thread?

I realize that this isn't the trading forum but I'm afraid that it may get lost in the shuffle in the main forum.


It belongs in the trading forum, but I can add the link to the OP.

#3167 Rhett

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 12:04 AM

I have to say, now that I don't care about consoles anymore... a PC-exclusive trading forum sounds nice. >_>
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#3168 jughead

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 12:12 AM

I agree.

#3169 EraserFace

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 04:35 AM

The AMD game codes should come with the gfx card regardless if Amazon doesn't mention them. The codes are given by AMD and not the retailers. Also because you have an i7 listed in your build, get a 7970. Pair the best with only the best!


Thanks. I thought that would be the case, I just wanted to know for certain.

I decided that I'm going to wait until the end of this week before I make my choice on which GPU to buy. The GTX 770 will supposedly be out by this Thursday, so I’m going to wait to see how well that card turns out to be. If it’s a bust, then I will definitely be getting the 7970. The only trouble I will have then, is deciding on which 7970 card I should get. I’m thinking it will be between on either the Gigabyte GV-R797OC-3GD ($400) or the PowerColor AX7970 3GBD5-2DHV3 ($380). Which one is considered the best, or does it not really matter?

#3170 aShufflinZombie

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 10:10 AM

It belongs in the trading forum, but I can add the link to the OP.


If you could create a thread in the Master Trading Lists forum, that would be great! Thanks io!

#3171 supracom

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 06:23 PM

Hi all, I've been using pcpartpicker to put together some builds. I was wondering how reliable their compatibility filter is. If the site tells me no issues/incompatibilities found, am I reasonably safe relying on that verdict? Thanks in advance.

#3172 supracom

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Posted 01 June 2013 - 07:09 PM

Ok, this is what I've put together so far. I've already pulled the trigger on the CPU, GPU, mobo, and RAM. Wish I had waited till today to buy the 7970, Newegg came out with some pretty steep discounts. That aside, I'd be much obliged if some knowledgeable CAGs could check out my build and vet it for compatibility issues or cheaper/better part alternatives. Thanks much.

pc part picker.com/p/11OWR

(Can't post links :-()

#3173 EraserFace

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 06:42 PM

Well today I ended up buying the Sapphire Vapor-X 7970 GHz 3GB, since it went on sell today. I should get it sometime this Wednesday. Can't wait to test it out! :D

#3174 mike.m

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 05:48 AM

I'm looking at upgrading my video card, potentially because I might be skipping the new consoles this year depending on pricing and features.

This is my current PC:

Intel Core i5-2500 CPU @ 3.30GHz
8GB RAM
GeForce GTX 460

I don't keep up with PC parts so I'm looking to upgrade and not spend a fortune. Maybe keep it to about $300 or less.

Suggestions?

 

I don't want to start a new thread to ask this question, so I'll just reask it here. Suggestions?

 

I'm thinking a GeForce GTX 660. I've seen some around $200 or so and that would be a good pricepoint for me.



#3175 aShufflinZombie

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 10:12 AM

 

I'm looking at upgrading my video card, potentially because I might be skipping the new consoles this year depending on pricing and features.

This is my current PC:

Intel Core i5-2500 CPU @ 3.30GHz
8GB RAM
GeForce GTX 460

I don't keep up with PC parts so I'm looking to upgrade and not spend a fortune. Maybe keep it to about $300 or less.

Suggestions?

 

I don't want to start a new thread to ask this question, so I'll just reask it here. Suggestions?

 

I'm thinking a GeForce GTX 660. I've seen some around $200 or so and that would be a good pricepoint for me.

 

Overclock that 2500k to 4.x first. Then, get a new graphics card. This should suit you fine.



#3176 Fatso2027

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 02:32 PM

So my TV kicked the bucket, and instead of paying for a new one I decided to switch over to PC gaming, and sold me Xbox and PS3.  I slapped this build together fairly quickly, what do you guys think?

Sorry in advance, I couldn't get the wishlist to work.

 

Optical drive-

http://www.newegg.co...=0R4-000B-00001

 

Case-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16811156247

 

Mobo-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16813157266

 

Video Card-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814125414

 

PSU-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16817148049

 

CPU-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16819103960

 

RAM-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16820148544

 

HDD-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16822236339

 

Basically this is going to be my console replacement build, but I'm on somewhat of a budget, hence no SSD.  I want it to play any game, and I plan to crossfire in the future.  It will, ideally be hooked up to a TV in my living room, and I'll probably end up using it for school stuff as well (IT program). 

 

Let me know what you guys think of it, thanks!



#3177 aShufflinZombie

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Posted 06 June 2013 - 03:58 PM

So my TV kicked the bucket, and instead of paying for a new one I decided to switch over to PC gaming, and sold me Xbox and PS3.  I slapped this build together fairly quickly, what do you guys think?

Sorry in advance, I couldn't get the wishlist to work.

 

Optical drive-

http://www.newegg.co...=0R4-000B-00001

 

Case-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16811156247

 

Mobo-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16813157266

 

Video Card-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814125414

 

PSU-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16817148049

 

CPU-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16819103960

 

RAM-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16820148544

 

HDD-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16822236339

 

Basically this is going to be my console replacement build, but I'm on somewhat of a budget, hence no SSD.  I want it to play any game, and I plan to crossfire in the future.  It will, ideally be hooked up to a TV in my living room, and I'll probably end up using it for school stuff as well (IT program). 

 

Let me know what you guys think of it, thanks!

Doesn't seem too bad except for that PSU. Do you have a MicroCenter near you?



#3178 Fatso2027

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 12:56 AM

I don't the only thing I have around is best buy and a local place that's very expensive.  What's wrong with the PSU, out of curiosity

 

 

So my TV kicked the bucket, and instead of paying for a new one I decided to switch over to PC gaming, and sold me Xbox and PS3.  I slapped this build together fairly quickly, what do you guys think?

Sorry in advance, I couldn't get the wishlist to work.

 

Optical drive-

http://www.newegg.co...=0R4-000B-00001

 

Case-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16811156247

 

Mobo-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16813157266

 

Video Card-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814125414

 

PSU-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16817148049

 

CPU-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16819103960

 

RAM-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16820148544

 

HDD-

http://www.newegg.co...N82E16822236339

 

Basically this is going to be my console replacement build, but I'm on somewhat of a budget, hence no SSD.  I want it to play any game, and I plan to crossfire in the future.  It will, ideally be hooked up to a TV in my living room, and I'll probably end up using it for school stuff as well (IT program). 

 

Let me know what you guys think of it, thanks!

Doesn't seem too bad except for that PSU. Do you have a MicroCenter near you?

 



#3179 aShufflinZombie

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 09:11 AM

I don't the only thing I have around is best buy and a local place that's very expensive.  What's wrong with the PSU, out of curiosity
 

So my TV kicked the bucket, and instead of paying for a new one I decided to switch over to PC gaming, and sold me Xbox and PS3.  I slapped this build together fairly quickly, what do you guys think?
Sorry in advance, I couldn't get the wishlist to work.
 
Optical drive-
http://www.newegg.co...=0R4-000B-00001
 
Case-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16811156247
 
Mobo-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16813157266
 
Video Card-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16814125414
 
PSU-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16817148049
 
CPU-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16819103960
 
RAM-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16820148544
 
HDD-
http://www.newegg.co...N82E16822236339
 
Basically this is going to be my console replacement build, but I'm on somewhat of a budget, hence no SSD.  I want it to play any game, and I plan to crossfire in the future.  It will, ideally be hooked up to a TV in my living room, and I'll probably end up using it for school stuff as well (IT program). 
 
Let me know what you guys think of it, thanks!

Doesn't seem too bad except for that PSU. Do you have a MicroCenter near you?


I have never heard of that brand and the reviews aren't very good. Try to stick with Rose will, Seasonic or Corsair.

#3180 Fatso2027

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Posted 14 June 2013 - 01:37 PM

For some reason while picking that one, I read crossfire in the description as Crosair, and then again as crossfire lol, woops