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


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#1621 TwelveVolt

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 09:09 PM

Looking for some advice please...

Want to build a cheap (~$500) gaming rig based around this barebones kit from Tigerdirect: http://www.tigerdire...p?EdpNo=7220551

Could anyone recommend a video card that would work well with the above?

I don't need anything beastly, just enough to make previous year's games (L4D2, TF2) run smooth and shiny at 1680x1050.

I've read "a very powerful video card will be useless in a low-end Gaming PC, you want to balance the components to avoid having your CPU bottleneck your video card", but I can't interpret the info I look at well enough to determine where the bottleneck would be.

Any suggestions greatly appreciated; thanks!

With that power supply, you're going to be pretty limited. You might look at the GTS450, a decent card that will work with a 400W PSU.

This EVGA card is $100 after rebate. It's not the lifetime rebate version, but I think they come standard with a 2 year warranty.

If you wanted to upgrade the PSU, maybe go with this Corsair and then get a slightly better videocard like this ASUS card for a little better performance.

#1622 basilofbkrst

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 10:42 PM

So I've been reading that the 1155 mobos are not going to be out till late April at best. It makes me think I should just stick with a 950 and get it now. While the 3d work I will be doing can take advantage of the power I don't know if the difference is big enough for me to wait that long. .

Any thoughts from those more in the know and possibly one who is also 3D rendering?

EDIT: I may just go get the 2500k from Micro Center for 180 and it preforms just under the 2600. Get the mobo later maybe.

Edited by basilofbkrst, 05 February 2011 - 11:17 PM.



#1623 dfg

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Posted 06 February 2011 - 09:08 AM

With that power supply, you're going to be pretty limited. You might look at the GTS450, a decent card that will work with a 400W PSU.

This EVGA card is $100 after rebate. It's not the lifetime rebate version, but I think they come standard with a 2 year warranty.

If you wanted to upgrade the PSU, maybe go with this Corsair and then get a slightly better videocard like this ASUS card for a little better performance.


Thanks for the advice. Yeah, I think the drawbacks of that kit aren't worth the convenience. I may just follow a build I found from a link in this thread.
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#1624 mis0soup

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 03:58 AM

Hello cheap ass gamers

I have a request, I am doing some research on a new gaming rig and have settled on this (at bottom) and was wondering what you guys thought or if you could find me a better deal.
Thanks in advance!




1.00 mon-24-asu-029 Asus VE248H 24in 2ms LED 219.00 219.00

1.00 cpu-1366-950-ci7 i7 950 3.06G Quad Core Retail 319.00

1.00 mb-1366-asu-007 Sabertooth X58 DD3 AL ATX 217.00 217.00

1.00 m-12g-133-c-k3d3 12G(3x4G) DDR3 PC10600 1333MHz Crucial

1.00 hdi-wd-1000-s3-64 WD 1TB 64M 7200 SATA3 Caviar Black

1.00 vg-pce-ati-285 Sapphire Radeon HD6850 1G 100315L 198.00

1.00 cas-clm-007 Coolermaster HAF 922 Black NoPS ATX 99.00

1.00 pow-antec-ea750eps Antec EarthWatt 750W EPS EA750 119.00

1.00 sf-msos-7-hp64 Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit OEM 124.00

1.00 o-drw-lit-038 Lite-ON IHAS124-04 24X SATA 26.00 26.00


1.00 bb-labor Labor (Note: Each computer BIOS is 20.00 20.00


#1625 basilofbkrst

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Posted 08 February 2011 - 05:46 AM

Hello cheap ass gamers

I have a request, I am doing some research on a new gaming rig and have settled on this (at bottom) and was wondering what you guys thought or if you could find me a better deal.
Thanks in advance!




1.00 mon-24-asu-029 Asus VE248H 24in 2ms LED 219.00 219.00

1.00 cpu-1366-950-ci7 i7 950 3.06G Quad Core Retail 319.00

1.00 mb-1366-asu-007 Sabertooth X58 DD3 AL ATX 217.00 217.00

1.00 m-12g-133-c-k3d3 12G(3x4G) DDR3 PC10600 1333MHz Crucial

1.00 hdi-wd-1000-s3-64 WD 1TB 64M 7200 SATA3 Caviar Black

1.00 vg-pce-ati-285 Sapphire Radeon HD6850 1G 100315L 198.00

1.00 cas-clm-007 Coolermaster HAF 922 Black NoPS ATX 99.00

1.00 pow-antec-ea750eps Antec EarthWatt 750W EPS EA750 119.00

1.00 sf-msos-7-hp64 Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit OEM 124.00

1.00 o-drw-lit-038 Lite-ON IHAS124-04 24X SATA 26.00 26.00


1.00 bb-labor Labor (Note: Each computer BIOS is 20.00 20.00


Def dig the build & andd FYI Micro Center has i7s on sale year round. the 950 is $200 there.


#1626 mis0soup

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 12:18 AM

thanks I am new to the game so any help would be greatly appreciated, what I want to know is this a good build also I what could I add to make it better, I use mostly Photoshop and after effects but would love to play some Diablo 3 and COD 7, and do I need liquid cooling and a SSD to load the OS on would this help.

Thanks guys

#1627 basilofbkrst

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Posted 09 February 2011 - 05:01 AM

I don't think Nvidia's CUDA stuff is used in base photoshop or AE, but I have seen some compared benchmarks that show the GTX 5xx series beating out the 6850.

I would NOT go anywhere near liquid cooling. You should be able to keep your comp cool with fans. In most cases you're good with what came in the case. Sometimes a case will come with empty spots and you can add a fan or two to ensure good temps.

I hear good things about loading your OS and programs onto a small solid state then dropping media onto a large HD. I have no experience with it though.


#1628 mis0soup

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Posted 10 February 2011 - 12:14 AM

ok so I am a total noob to this stuff and I thank you for all your help but one more question, I haven’t bought anything yet I am having a mom and pop store build it they have great revues, but I don’t know what I should be buying like I probably need a processor fan instead of a liquid cooler I am opting for a 60 ssd for my Photoshop and os, is the build a good build is there anything I should add to this to make it better?

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#1629 Draekon

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Posted 10 February 2011 - 03:53 PM

Anybody know if standard monitors (not a TV/Monitor) accept signals from a remote? I'm curious because in the room I game, my PC is in the same room. Both my TV/Monitor and my TV are Samsung and this causes issues when flipping through inputs and turning on/off the television. The same thing happens with my harmony remote too and it's been driving me nuts for the past two to three years. So I'm caving in and selling my monitor to family or just use it at work and get a new monitor for my home computer.

I'm also wondering if the new Samsung LED TV's have the same signal as a Samsung LCD TV. I would assume so, but I'm trying to flesh out all my options before I purchase some kind of monitor for my computer.

#1630 MSI Magus

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Posted 10 February 2011 - 03:58 PM

Thoughts on my build? Gonna wait a few weeks on the sandy bridge obviously.

3.3Ghz Intel Core i5-2500 6MB Cache Quad-Core
Stock Intel LGA1155 Heatsink and Fan
Intel BOXDH67BL (Intel H67, HDMI, DVI, PCI-E, 5xSATA, 4xDDR3)
4GB (2GBx2) PC3 10666 DDR3 1333Mhz Memory Lifetime Warranty
1.5TB 7200RPM 32MB Cache Serial ATA300 (Major Brand)
22X LG SATA Dual Layer DVD+/-RW/CDRW w/Nero
1GB GeForce GTX 460 GDDR5 PCI-E Dual-DVI (Major Brand)
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
Thermaltake V9 Black Edition (5 5.25, 6 3.5) 4 Fans, Audio/USB
650watt Corsair CMPSU-650TX
Onboard LAN included
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio 7.1 PCI-Ex

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#1631 DukeEdwardI

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 05:10 PM

So I've finally decided on the Radeon 6870 for my next card. But I'm starting to worry a little as I think my motherboard/CPU is going to bottleneck the crap out of it.

I've got a Asus P5W DH Deluxe and a Q6600 (2.4ghz stock). The motherboard only has a PCI Express x16 1.0 slot. The 6870 is a PCI Express x16 2.1 card. Now I've read that this shouldn't be a big deal, that PCI Express x16 is backwards compatible and whatnot. But it can be hit or miss depending on the motherboard. My motherboard is pretty old and the latest BIOS update for it was October 2009 so I really doubt it has official support for PCI Express x16 2.1 cards.

I'm going to be overclocking the CPU today though to at least 3.0ghz (hopefully more), so that should definitely reduce the bottleneck, but would it be enough?

What do you guys think? Do you think the card will work in my motherboard? If it does, how much will the motherboard/CPU bottleneck it?

Other specs:
Windows 7 64-bit
BIOS version 2901
Antec 900 Case
Thermaltake 850w PSU
EVGA nVidia 8800GTS 512MB
Corsair 4GB RAM (DDR2 800)

EDIT:

Thoughts on my build? Gonna wait a few weeks on the sandy bridge obviously.

3.3Ghz Intel Core i5-2500 6MB Cache Quad-Core
Stock Intel LGA1155 Heatsink and Fan
Intel BOXDH67BL (Intel H67, HDMI, DVI, PCI-E, 5xSATA, 4xDDR3)
4GB (2GBx2) PC3 10666 DDR3 1333Mhz Memory Lifetime Warranty
1.5TB 7200RPM 32MB Cache Serial ATA300 (Major Brand)
22X LG SATA Dual Layer DVD+/-RW/CDRW w/Nero
1GB GeForce GTX 460 GDDR5 PCI-E Dual-DVI (Major Brand)
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
Thermaltake V9 Black Edition (5 5.25, 6 3.5) 4 Fans, Audio/USB
650watt Corsair CMPSU-650TX
Onboard LAN included
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Xtreme Audio 7.1 PCI-Ex


I would say that looks pretty decent. Couple of things:
-Have you thought about getting a CPU cooler? The stock ones do the job for stock clocks, but if you plan on getting more life out of your CPU and overclocking it, you'll need a third-party cooler.
-This may not be required, but maybe get a higher power PSU? I'm sure a 650w is fine and will do the job, but your card requires a minimum of 450w and you might running at the max your PSU can handle. Maybe get an 850w? Again, probably not required.

Edited by DukeEdwardI, 13 February 2011 - 05:21 PM.


#1632 MSI Magus

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 07:36 PM

So I've finally decided on the Radeon 6870 for my next card. But I'm starting to worry a little as I think my motherboard/CPU is going to bottleneck the crap out of it.

I've got a Asus P5W DH Deluxe and a Q6600 (2.4ghz stock). The motherboard only has a PCI Express x16 1.0 slot. The 6870 is a PCI Express x16 2.1 card. Now I've read that this shouldn't be a big deal, that PCI Express x16 is backwards compatible and whatnot. But it can be hit or miss depending on the motherboard. My motherboard is pretty old and the latest BIOS update for it was October 2009 so I really doubt it has official support for PCI Express x16 2.1 cards.

I'm going to be overclocking the CPU today though to at least 3.0ghz (hopefully more), so that should definitely reduce the bottleneck, but would it be enough?

What do you guys think? Do you think the card will work in my motherboard? If it does, how much will the motherboard/CPU bottleneck it?

Other specs:
Windows 7 64-bit
BIOS version 2901
Antec 900 Case
Thermaltake 850w PSU
EVGA nVidia 8800GTS 512MB
Corsair 4GB RAM (DDR2 800)

EDIT:


I would say that looks pretty decent. Couple of things:
-Have you thought about getting a CPU cooler? The stock ones do the job for stock clocks, but if you plan on getting more life out of your CPU and overclocking it, you'll need a third-party cooler.
-This may not be required, but maybe get a higher power PSU? I'm sure a 650w is fine and will do the job, but your card requires a minimum of 450w and you might running at the max your PSU can handle. Maybe get an 850w? Again, probably not required.


I will look in to pricing for both. For the Cooler though since I do not plan to overclock its not something to worry about right?

When the rest of the world is crazy it just does not pay to be sane! - Captain Lerner
Government is the enemy, until you need a friend - Bill Cohen


#1633 DukeEdwardI

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 08:46 PM

I will look in to pricing for both. For the Cooler though since I do not plan to overclock its not something to worry about right?


Probably not, then. If I were you, I'd just get one anyway, but I tend to overdo things. People thought I was MAD when I bought an 850w PSU when I built my PC in early 2008. And now I'd totally prepared for my next upgrades!

#1634 MSI Magus

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 09:23 PM

Probably not, then. If I were you, I'd just get one anyway, but I tend to overdo things. People thought I was MAD when I bought an 850w PSU when I built my PC in early 2008. And now I'd totally prepared for my next upgrades!


Since I am not the most PC savy person id rather go slightly overboard then underboard. I mean id rather pay an extra $200 up front and go overboard then have something burn out later from not having enough fans or have a headache thanks to a weak PSU.

When the rest of the world is crazy it just does not pay to be sane! - Captain Lerner
Government is the enemy, until you need a friend - Bill Cohen


#1635 Mid Boss

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Posted 13 February 2011 - 10:13 PM

Since I am not the most PC savy person id rather go slightly overboard then underboard. I mean id rather pay an extra $200 up front and go overboard then have something burn out later from not having enough fans or have a headache thanks to a weak PSU.


Don't worry about the PSU. The one you picked out is going to be more than enough for the build you have planned out. The motherboard you have picked out is only going to support a single graphics card and unless you're running a Crossfire or SLI setup, 650W is plenty.


#1636 dfg

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 05:17 PM

Anybody have any experience with waiting for Amazon to get a video card back in stock? Days, weeks, months?

I know it's probably dependent on the manufacturer, but all the other parts for my new box are sitting here and I'm worried that by the time the vidcard comes, I'll find out some other piece is DOA and I'll be SOL on the RMA. ...tia lol
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#1637 shrike4242

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 06:28 PM

Anybody have any experience with waiting for Amazon to get a video card back in stock? Days, weeks, months?

I know it's probably dependent on the manufacturer, but all the other parts for my new box are sitting here and I'm worried that by the time the vidcard comes, I'll find out some other piece is DOA and I'll be SOL on the RMA. ...tia lol

The GTX 560 I ordered from them was listed as "back in stock in 1 to 3 months" (I wasn't in a rush for it), though it shipped a little less than two weeks after I ordered it.

#1638 paz9x

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Posted 17 February 2011 - 07:07 PM

Anybody have any experience with waiting for Amazon to get a video card back in stock? Days, weeks, months?

I know it's probably dependent on the manufacturer, but all the other parts for my new box are sitting here and I'm worried that by the time the vidcard comes, I'll find out some other piece is DOA and I'll be SOL on the RMA. ...tia lol


call them, they may be able to give you a more definitive period.
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#1639 dfg

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Posted 18 February 2011 - 04:05 AM

Thanks both of youse for the input. I went ahead and pulled the trigger on a similar card because if I leave these boxes lying around my apartment much longer, the wife is gonna toss them and me out together.
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#1640 MSI Magus

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 03:16 AM

Anyone know a good site other then ecollegepc for buying a pc if you are not building it yourself?

When the rest of the world is crazy it just does not pay to be sane! - Captain Lerner
Government is the enemy, until you need a friend - Bill Cohen


#1641 fishphoenix

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 04:40 AM

I bought my PC last year from cyberpowerpc.com; I would recommend the site.

#1642 MSI Magus

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 04:43 AM

I bought my PC last year from cyberpowerpc.com; I would recommend the site.


Always tempting, but I have heard a lot of horror stories about them and to boot their prices is often $100-$200 more then anything at ecollege. I will look further in to it though, thanks.

When the rest of the world is crazy it just does not pay to be sane! - Captain Lerner
Government is the enemy, until you need a friend - Bill Cohen


#1643 basilofbkrst

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 05:14 AM

If your not going to build it yourself but want custom why not dell?


#1644 MSI Magus

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Posted 19 February 2011 - 01:34 PM

If your not going to build it yourself but want custom why not dell?


I thought dell used cheap parts and tended to overcharge to boot?

When the rest of the world is crazy it just does not pay to be sane! - Captain Lerner
Government is the enemy, until you need a friend - Bill Cohen


#1645 RAMSTORIA

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Posted 26 February 2011 - 07:44 PM

I thought dell used cheap parts and tended to overcharge to boot?


all things considered Dell is actually pretty good on their prices. however, there can be some downsides. first is the flexibility on building the machine. they generally only give you a few choices as far as video cards, processors, etc depending on which model you are "customizing". second is the problem with upgrading. now its not always a problem, but depending on the computer you may have limited bays for drives, limited room for a new video card, etc. plus, Dell isn't very upfront with their motherboards, so in a couple years you may find that your mobo cant handle an upgraded CPU and/or RAM. but in the end, i've had a Dell before and was very happy with the quality of the machine, so you could certainly do worse. just try and do as much research as possible, especially since you already had a build more or less picked out.

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#1646 DukeEdwardI

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Posted 26 February 2011 - 08:03 PM

I know that when I bought my Dell laptops back in college, there were coupons ALL over the Internet that knocked off a couple hundred bucks. I don't know if they still have those kind of coupons floating around though.

Edited by DukeEdwardI, 27 February 2011 - 07:16 AM.


#1647 shrike4242

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 05:47 AM

The one main issue with a pre-built machine like a Dell is that the PSU isn't beefy enough to handle an upgraded video card, unless you go with one of their XPS mini-tower systems.

CPU and RAM upgrades aren't as much of an issue, since the system boards they use these days are more than OK to handle those issues.

#1648 Mid Boss

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 06:08 AM

The one main issue with a pre-built machine like a Dell is that the PSU isn't beefy enough to handle an upgraded video card, unless you go with one of their XPS mini-tower systems.

CPU and RAM upgrades aren't as much of an issue, since the system boards they use these days are more than OK to handle those issues.


Another issue with some Dell systems is that the PSU isn't always going to be upgradeable. On some Dell systems they use a proprietary design for the main power connector making it next to impossible to upgrade the PSU.


#1649 jbang

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Posted 27 February 2011 - 02:33 PM

Hello everyone,
I posted earlier about my system and the graphics card, but I decided to just go ahead and upgrade the whole thing. While I hold back and look around for a good price on the 1GB GTX 460, I've already purchased a new 530w psu. I am looking to buy these following parts:
CPU
MOBO
RAM
Now I'm fairly sure that these parts are all compatible but I'd just like to make sure if anybody would like to check. Also I'd like to note that I'll primarily be using this to play games and record video via FRAPS so would upping the CPU to a Deneb make any significant difference? The only thing I saw was the presence of an L3 cache in the details.
Thanks for any help!

#1650 retro.elite

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 09:05 PM

Sandy Bridge (LGA 1155) motherboards with B3 revision fixes the SATA 3Gb/s port. Newly fix motherboard will have the B3 stepping logo on the packaging, or have xxxx-B3 in the model/ product name to help identifying the new motherboards. ASUS, Gigabyte, and MSI has begun to shipping these B3 boards, expect the new motherboards in a week or two.

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