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Help buying a new desktop

dauntSilverdauntSilver Huntsville, ALPosts: 146Member
I have about $1000 to drop on a desktop pc.. what should I get? I have to admit, im new at this.
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  • RaunuRaunu Lewisburg, PAPosts: 483Member
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    I have about $1000 to drop on a desktop pc.. what should I get? I have to admit, im new at this.

     

    Go to youtube and watch the Newegg instructions on choosing parts and building a PC.  After watching the videos, let us know if you're comfortable doing this and then we'll be able to give you a better recommendation.

     

    Here's link

     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPIXAtNGGCw

    - - "What if the hokey pokey really is what it's all about?" - -

  • CabalocCabaloc Fort Pierce, FLPosts: 116Member
      Yea the newegg videos are good if your gonna pick your parts
  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCPosts: 5,609Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    I have about $1000 to drop on a desktop pc.. what should I get? I have to admit, im new at this.

     Are you starting from scratch or do you already have some things you're keeping like monitor, keyboard, mouse?

    i generally trust independent hardware sites much more than anyone who is trying to sell you stuff...for obvious reasons :)

    Once upon a time I used to use Sharky's Extreme 3 different priced builds as a guideline to build my own. Sadly they don't seem to update the site any longer--the latest builds there are from the spring of 2012.

    Here's a site that helps you coose your components using a color-coded tiered approach. There are also tutorials there on how to build. For a $1000 budget you want to be looking at Tier3 or 4 components: http://www.hardware-revolution.com/mainstream-gaming-pcs-v3-8-1/

    Even if you want someone to build it for you, you're much better off picking the components one by one and then finding a good place that stocks those components and builds custom PCs.

    I know newegg has a lot of fans here--and they're not bad--but I have been using NCIX.com for more than 10 years to get my components. They will also build it for you for a modest fee: http://www.ncix.com/

    ...

    Here's what you end-up with with tier 3-4 components at the HW Revolution site I linked above...

    I'm sure people will chime-in with their variations too but here it goes:

    CPU: i5-3570 ... $224

    Motherboard:  ASRock Z75 Pro3 LGA ... $79

    Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 1600  ... $43

    GPU: EVGA Geforce GTX 660 2GB ... $214

    Hard Drive: WD Caviar Blue 1 TB Sata 3 ... $74

    Optical Drive: Liteon 24X DVD burner ... $18

    Power Supply: Rosewill HIVE Series HIVE-650 80 Plus Bronze Modular... $70

    Case: Coolermaster Storm Scout ... $80

    CPU cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO ... $33

    Sound: ASUS Xonar DGX PCI-E GX2.5 ... $40

    Total:  $875

    Personally, I would add a solid state drive to that. For $100 you should be able to get a decent 120 GB SSD that is big enough for your OS and one MMO or two

    You'll also need a copy of WIndows 7 or 8 (64 bit edition) and that will also be ~ $100 bringing you up to around $1100 before taxes.

    Good luck.

  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Iselin
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    I have about $1000 to drop on a desktop pc.. what should I get? I have to admit, im new at this.

     Are you starting from scratch or do you already have some things you're keeping like monitor, keyboard, mouse?

    i generally trust independent hardware sites much more than anyone who is trying to sell you stuff...for obvious reasons :)

    Once upon a time I used to use Sharky's Extreme 3 different priced builds as a guideline to build my own. Sadly they don't seem to update the site any longer--the latest builds there are from the spring of 2012.

    Here's a site that helps you coose your components using a color-coded tiered approach. There are also tutorials there on how to build. For a $1000 budget you want to be looking at Tier3 or 4 components: http://www.hardware-revolution.com/mainstream-gaming-pcs-v3-8-1/

    Even if you want someone to build it for you, you're much better off picking the components one by one and then finding a good place that stocks those components and builds custom PCs.

    I know newegg has a lot of fans here--and they're not bad--but I have been using NCIX.com for more than 10 years to get my components. They will also build it for you for a modest fee: http://www.ncix.com/

    ...

    Here's what you end-up with with tier 3-4 components at the HW Revolution site I linked above...

    I'm sure people will chime-in with their variations too but here it goes:

    CPU: i5-3570 ... $224

    Motherboard:  ASRock Z75 Pro3 LGA ... $79

    Memory: Corsair XMS3 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 1600  ... $43

    GPU: EVGA Geforce GTX 660 2GB ... $214

    Hard Drive: WD Caviar Blue 1 TB Sata 3 ... $74

    Optical Drive: Liteon 24X DVD burner ... $18

    Power Supply: Rosewill HIVE Series HIVE-650 80 Plus Bronze Modular... $70

    Case: Coolermaster Storm Scout ... $80

    CPU cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO ... $33

    Sound: ASUS Xonar DGX PCI-E GX2.5 ... $40

    Total:  $875

    Personally, I would add a solid state drive to that. For $100 you should be able to get a decent 120 GB SSD that is big enough for your OS and one MMO or two

    You'll also need a copy of WIndows 7 or 8 (64 bit edition) and that will also be ~ $100 bringing you up to around $1100 before taxes.

    Good luck.

    Let me caveat this next statement by saying all information that follows is only valid as of this writing.  Prices and performance of parts (based on drivers) can change on a daily basis.  This is part of the reason most of us here who offer computer building advice will say please don't ask until you are ready to pull the trigger.  With that said, let the wall of text begin...

     

    The above poster has some decent advice and I've also used the linked site to get an idea for specific price ranges in the past but it's hardly something I would consider for myself today.  Mostly because it prioritizes parts that most people honestly don't need to worry about purchasing, such as a sound card for example.  Of course some might argue why skimp on sound for a mere $40?  Well let's give an example of where for most people onboad sound will not only be sufficient but will also give you a better overall computer.

    At nearly $225 for the CPU that better be the I5-3570K model (the K is very important).  That means you have the ability to overclock your CPU (though typically limited by Motherboard and CPU cooling options).  In his build that didn't matter (other than it was overpriced) because he chose a motherboard which can't be overclocked.  However on a $1000 budget that is very doable for about $40 (the price of that audio card).  Most decent entry level overclockable motherboards will run you right around $120.

    While the price is accurate (for the most part) on the GPU it's not really the best deal around today.  Give or take $10 depending on the day/deal you can find an AMD 7870 LE card (Tahiti) that will absolutely outperform the GTX 660.  For those not aware the Tahiti chips are the same used in the AMD 7950 and 7970 cards.

    Now is where it gets a bit tricky.  Thus far we at the same total amount as listed above before considering a solid state drive and operating system.  Assuming you will be using Windows you really can't just ignore that cost so there goes another $90 bringing your total to $965.  Remember this price assumes you already have all the peripherals (monitor/mouse/keyboard/speakers and/or headset plus I wouldn't personally plug a $1000 machine in without a surge protector or UPS).  It also doesn't factor in if you wanted to pay someone else to build it for you.

    For now let's assume you have the peripherals and are willing to build your own.  Overall you have a VERY solid system at that cost but because your only storage drive is Western Digital Cavier Blue it's about a slow as you can get when it comes to loading programs (WD Blues are 5400rpm drives).  At $35 away from your $1000 budget how could you possible fit a decent size (120/128GB) solid state drive?  The easiest options would be to choose a cheaper case (there are PLENTY of decent cases in the $40-$50 range) and unless you actually use CD/DVD's get rid of the optical drive.  Don't fret you can easily install windows via a usb thumb drive.  If you need help figuring that out we can post you some links.  Those two changes right there will net you just enough for a Crucial M4 or Samsung 840 120/128GB solid state drive which you will use as the primary boot drive for your operating system and a few other programs usee on a daily basis.  The rest can be saved to your 1TB WD Cavier Blue hard drive.

    Sure you had a cut some corners to get this system but every corner is a minor upgrade later that doesn't require replacing parts (unless you absolutely hate the case selection in the $40-50 market).  Both the sound card and optical drive (cd/dvd) are additions that can be added later with little to no headache at all.  Actually as a rule of thumb I would say buy without a soundcard (onboard sound is standard on todays motherboards and typically more than enough for most peoples needs) and only upgrade if you find you can't live with it's quality.

    My two cents, take it for what it's worth.

  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCPosts: 5,609Member Uncommon

    That's also some solid advice form the poster above (and yes it is indeed the "K" CPU...easily overclockable to 4.8.)

    As to the separate sound card... I may be holding on to some old computer building prejudices but it's not the quality of the sound that created my habit of spending the extra $40 or so on something other than the sound chip on the motherboard. It's just my habitual quest for getting the ultimate performance from what I have to work with.

    I admit I haven't tested this recently and most HW review sites don't bother with it any longer, but it always used to be the case that using the built-in sound chip came at a cost of a few extra CPU cycles taken away from other things. Mind you, the differences were never really staggering--nothing like using built-in graphics--and mostly un-noticeable unless your CPU was nearing the  point of bottle-necking... like I said, perhaps just an old habit with little justification these days but I always give the on-board sound a pass... currently using the same Auzen X FI - Prelude I've been using for my last 3 builds.

    As to video cards... I don't have to be pushed very far to go into ATI territory. My current GPU is a 7970 after all :)

     

  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon

    The reason I brought up the K model was in your original post it wasn't clear but I assumed it was the non-K version by virtue of the MB you had it paired with.  On a new build it wouldn't make much sense to add a K model then pair it with a MB that can't be OC'd, especially on a budget where $10 can actually make a difference elsewhere.

    I've heard similar points with regards to soundcards but I still stick by waiting to purchase that as an "upgrade" option when on  a budget rather than a must have initial purchase item.

    Recent findings, at least for this generation, tend to have AMD as the better flavor of the year for single GPU build systems (outside Titan) while Nvidia is the better option for multi GPU builds, especially if you are wanting to run 120FPS on "3D" monitors for the majority of gfx hog games.

  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCPosts: 5,609Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by miguksaram

    The reason I brought up the K model was in your original post it wasn't clear but I assumed it was the non-K version by virtue of the MB you had it paired with.  On a new build it wouldn't make much sense to add a K model then pair it with a MB that can't be OC'd, especially on a budget where $10 can actually make a difference elsewhere.

    I've heard similar points with regards to soundcards but I still stick by waiting to purchase that as an "upgrade" option when on  a budget rather than a must have initial purchase item.

    Recent findings, at least for this generation, tend to have AMD as the better flavor of the year for single GPU build systems (outside Titan) while Nvidia is the better option for multi GPU builds, especially if you are wanting to run 120FPS on "3D" monitors for the majority of gfx hog games.

    There is nothing wrong with that motherboard for overclocking. It may not be the "best" high-end OC enthusiats board but it's certainly capable. Here's a review where they took an i7-3770k to 4.6 on air using a comparable CPU cooler.

    http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/4853/asrock_z75_pro3_intel_z75_motherboard_review/index4.html

    There's a difference between modest overclocking and pushing the limits. It's really only in the later case that the premium boards with top-of-the-line capacitors and other components for rock-steady voltages and better cooling are needed.

    Personally I'm an ASUS fan and always build with a quality board from them. But then again I'm not trying to build a budget system for myself. I always overclock and shop with that in mind. I'm still running an old Bloomfield i7-930 that I OC'd to 4.4 just for fun and then backed-off to 4.0 for everyday use. It has been running this way for almost 3 years now.

    I'm certain that board will run that 3570K @ 4.2 - 4.6 easily....beyond that it's a different story.

     

  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Iselin

    There is nothing wrong with that motherboard for overclocking. It may not be the "best" high-end OC enthusiats board but it's certainly capable. Here's a review where they took an i7-3770k to 4.6 on air using a comparable CPU cooler.

    http://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/4853/asrock_z75_pro3_intel_z75_motherboard_review/index4.html

    There's a difference between modest overclocking and pushing the limits. It's really only in the later case that the premium boards with top-of-the-line capacitors and other components for rock-steady voltages and better cooling are needed.

    Personally I'm an ASUS fan and always build with a quality board from them. But then again I'm not trying to build a budget system for myself. I always overclock and shop with that in mind. I'm still running an old Bloomfield i7-930 that I OC'd to 4.4 just for fun and then backed-off to 4.0 for everyday use. It has been running this way for almost 3 years now.

    I'm certain that board will run that 3570K @ 4.2 - 4.6 easily....beyond that it's a different story.

     

    Sorry, I stand corrected.  For some reason my eyes saw that as an H77 model MB rather than a Z75.  In that case on his budget that might in fact be the better deal, assuming he doesn't wish to try and push an OC too far.

  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon

    Will update with a build.

  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member

    Guys... he's new at this... you really wanna get a new guy to OC his rig without knowing what he's doing? Just give him a OC-able rig with the best specs you can squeeze together for the pricetag and just let him decide which is better for him. Going on discussions which bits are better is something to do in another thread tbh, just state the bits you think he should use in a list (perhaps have cheap and expensive options, more than 2 even) and have pros and cons for each bit. Seems like a better way to help the OP especially cause he's new...

     

    *would never OC his rig unless he could afford a mineral oil coolant system first*

    image
  • dauntSilverdauntSilver Huntsville, ALPosts: 146Member

    soo.. lol whats wrong with just buying a computer with stuff already in it? I was looking at

    http://www.dell.com/us/p/alienware-x51/pd.aspx for $1274

    or

    http://www.dell.com/us/p/alienware-aurora-r4/pd.aspx?~ck=mn for $1424

    I know its a little over my 1k budget, but if they would last me a while, I guess I dont mind much.. Would you guys even consider buying these computers, or do they look like garbage to you?

  • dauntSilverdauntSilver Huntsville, ALPosts: 146Member
    Originally posted by Dihoru

    Guys... he's new at this... you really wanna get a new guy to OC his rig without knowing what he's doing? Just give him a OC-able rig with the best specs you can squeeze together for the pricetag and just let him decide which is better for him. Going on discussions which bits are better is something to do in another thread tbh, just state the bits you think he should use in a list (perhaps have cheap and expensive options, more than 2 even) and have pros and cons for each bit. Seems like a better way to help the OP especially cause he's new...

     

    *would never OC his rig unless he could afford a mineral oil coolant system first*

    lol, very new at this, thanks for understanding.. ive never bought a desktop pc before in my life, been living off of laptops ever since I began college 5 years ago.

  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCPosts: 5,609Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    Originally posted by Dihoru

    Guys... he's new at this... you really wanna get a new guy to OC his rig without knowing what he's doing? Just give him a OC-able rig with the best specs you can squeeze together for the pricetag and just let him decide which is better for him. Going on discussions which bits are better is something to do in another thread tbh, just state the bits you think he should use in a list (perhaps have cheap and expensive options, more than 2 even) and have pros and cons for each bit. Seems like a better way to help the OP especially cause he's new...

     

    *would never OC his rig unless he could afford a mineral oil coolant system first*

    lol, very new at this, thanks for understanding.. ive never bought a desktop pc before in my life, been living off of laptops ever since I began college 5 years ago.

    In that case what you really should do is go web shopping yourself, post links to what you find and ask for opinions... with open-ended questions you're likely to get open-ended answers.

    Btw... we still don't know if you need a monitor included in that $1000. A monitor can easily eat a large chunk of that cash.

  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    Originally posted by Dihoru

    Guys... he's new at this... you really wanna get a new guy to OC his rig without knowing what he's doing? Just give him a OC-able rig with the best specs you can squeeze together for the pricetag and just let him decide which is better for him. Going on discussions which bits are better is something to do in another thread tbh, just state the bits you think he should use in a list (perhaps have cheap and expensive options, more than 2 even) and have pros and cons for each bit. Seems like a better way to help the OP especially cause he's new...

     

    *would never OC his rig unless he could afford a mineral oil coolant system first*

    lol, very new at this, thanks for understanding.. ive never bought a desktop pc before in my life, been living off of laptops ever since I began college 5 years ago.

    To Dihoru:  OC'ing a CPU or GPU these days is pretty much laymans stuff with the bundled software available.  Sure you can go for extreme OC'ing which would require more knowledge/experience but you can easily OC an i5 3570K on a decent MB with the aforementioned Coolermaster 212 Evo to 4.5Ghz, perhaps higher.  I know because it's what my wifes system uses I build last year.  And yes I would certainly say learning how to OC a system without the aid of extra software designed to do it for you is honestly the better way to go about the option still exists to do it without much know how.    Which is why I provided this link which was just released and the guy in the video, if you aren't familiar with him, does some of the most thorough walkthru's of hardware you will find on the interwebz (most average 45 minutes, this one is almost an hour).  If you just what his overview of what to expect when it comes to OC'ing without watching the whole video you can skip to 42:00.

     

    To Dauntsilver:  We all started somewhere so don't feel bad.  Building your own PC these days really isn't difficult AT ALL as long as you willing to put in the time to learn (read/watch guides).  That said I can totally understand not wanting your first desktop to be a potential disaster if you make mistakes.  In that situation I would advise you look for reputable online or brick and mortor dealer.  Since you are coming from laptops I can understand the thought process behind buying the Dells you listed in your other post but I'll tell you right now if you decide to go with Dell just be aware you are overpaying for the hardware by a significant amount similar to people who use Apple/Mac desktops.

    It seems before we move forward in advising you further it would be better if you could provide us with your overall needs, such as:

    1. Preferred cost vs absolute maximum you can spend.  This is very important because the difference between a $1000 build and a $1500 build is quite significant.  In former you can make a performance machine but you will have to cut some corners while in the latter you can pretty much get a performance beast without cut corners or overspending for extremely limited performance boosts (5-10% being typical).

    2. Within the two aforementioned costs what do you actually need?  Full Desktop Hardware, Monitor(s), Keyboard, Mouse, Speaker/headset, Surge protector or UPS?

    3. What do you want/need this computer to do?  Purely gaming with some general websurfing/word processing?  Photo and/or video editing?  Do you expect to need a large storage capacity or could you settle for a smaller amount such as (240-256Gb)?  Do you have a preference for Windows 7 or 8?

  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCPosts: 5,609Member Uncommon

    Yeah. Isn't it nice? It wasn't so long ago that in order to get an Intel CPU with an unlocked multiplier you had to spend $800 or more... and not that long before that you often required a custom hacked BIOS for the motherboard and even some soldering for voltage mods...

    Now even some $250 CPUs can be had unlocked and all motherboards come with OC-ready BIOSes and OC utilities. I like it :)

  • dauntSilverdauntSilver Huntsville, ALPosts: 146Member
    Originally posted by miguksaram
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    Originally posted by Dihoru

    Guys... he's new at this... you really wanna get a new guy to OC his rig without knowing what he's doing? Just give him a OC-able rig with the best specs you can squeeze together for the pricetag and just let him decide which is better for him. Going on discussions which bits are better is something to do in another thread tbh, just state the bits you think he should use in a list (perhaps have cheap and expensive options, more than 2 even) and have pros and cons for each bit. Seems like a better way to help the OP especially cause he's new...

     

    *would never OC his rig unless he could afford a mineral oil coolant system first*

    lol, very new at this, thanks for understanding.. ive never bought a desktop pc before in my life, been living off of laptops ever since I began college 5 years ago.

    To Dihoru:  OC'ing a CPU or GPU these days is pretty much laymans stuff with the bundled software available.  Sure you can go for extreme OC'ing which would require more knowledge/experience but you can easily OC an i5 3570K on a decent MB with the aforementioned Coolermaster 212 Evo to 4.5Ghz, perhaps higher.  I know because it's what my wifes system uses I build last year.  And yes I would certainly say learning how to OC a system without the aid of extra software designed to do it for you is honestly the better way to go about the option still exists to do it without much know how.    Which is why I provided this link which was just released and the guy in the video, if you aren't familiar with him, does some of the most thorough walkthru's of hardware you will find on the interwebz (most average 45 minutes, this one is almost an hour).  If you just what his overview of what to expect when it comes to OC'ing without watching the whole video you can skip to 42:00.

     

    To Dauntsilver:  We all started somewhere so don't feel bad.  Building your own PC these days really isn't difficult AT ALL as long as you willing to put in the time to learn (read/watch guides).  That said I can totally understand not wanting your first desktop to be a potential disaster if you make mistakes.  In that situation I would advise you look for reputable online or brick and mortor dealer.  Since you are coming from laptops I can understand the thought process behind buying the Dells you listed in your other post but I'll tell you right now if you decide to go with Dell just be aware you are overpaying for the hardware by a significant amount similar to people who use Apple/Mac desktops.

    It seems before we move forward in advising you further it would be better if you could provide us with your overall needs, such as:

    1. Preferred cost vs absolute maximum you can spend.  This is very important because the difference between a $1000 build and a $1500 build is quite significant.  In former you can make a performance machine but you will have to cut some corners while in the latter you can pretty much get a performance beast without cut corners or overspending for extremely limited performance boosts (5-10% being typical).

    2. Within the two aforementioned costs what do you actually need?  Full Desktop Hardware, Monitor(s), Keyboard, Mouse, Speaker/headset, Surge protector or UPS?

    3. What do you want/need this computer to do?  Purely gaming with some general websurfing/word processing?  Photo and/or video editing?  Do you expect to need a large storage capacity or could you settle for a smaller amount such as (240-256Gb)?  Do you have a preference for Windows 7 or 8?

    ok I'll bump it up to $1500.. as an ABSOLUTE maximum (since i get paid friday). preferred around $1000-1250

    and as far as equipment goes, I can salvage a monitor, speakers, mouse and keyboard. I have nothing else though, not even a case.

    and i pretty much just want this computer for gaming tbh. I mean I always have my laptop for documents and such.. I can always upgrade the storage capacity later if I really need it, cant I? so yes, around 256 gb storage capacity is fine with me. and whichever you think is better, windows 7 or 8.. Ive always heard 7 is better though. so probably windows 7.

  • XthosXthos Columbus, OHPosts: 2,628Member

    Well, you can get a IBuyPower from Walmart, and do the build it yourself options.  It is cheaper than using their website, and actually pretty comparable to buying the parts yourself....The only downfall is using the Walmart selections you are a little limited, and you cannot select a power supply, so you will get a generic power supply probably, but you could swap it out for not too much if building was too much to do.

     

     

    3570 K processor, ASUS P8Z77-V LX MB, Intel 520 240 GB SSD, NZXT 210 case, 16 GB G Skill Ripjaw DDR3 1600 memory,  CD/DVD drive 24x, GTX 660 TI 2GB gfx card for $1173, with free shipping to a local Walmart.

     

    You can change the graphic card out to a GTX 680 2 GB from EVGA $1428 total.  The GTX 660 TI was pretty comparable to new parts from Newegg (think around $10-20), trying to pick the same quality item.  The GTX 680 build was off by around $60-80 I think.

     

    The big thing is you are going to probably get a 500 or so watt generic power supply, if you could choose the power supply option, I would have more confidience in it.  Any prebuild is probably going to be like that, unless you can choose the PS.

     

    The price comparisson was on the same part if I could find it, you can always bargain shop for their sales and I am sure save a good deal more on Newegg.

     

     

     

  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member
    Originally posted by Xthos

    Well, you can get a IBuyPower from Walmart, and do the build it yourself options.  It is cheaper than using their website, and actually pretty comparable to buying the parts yourself....The only downfall is using the Walmart selections you are a little limited, and you cannot select a power supply, so you will get a generic power supply probably, but you could swap it out for not too much if building was too much to do.

     

     

    3570 K processor, ASUS P8Z77-V LX MB, Intel 520 240 GB SSD, NZXT 210 case, 16 GB G Skill Ripjaw DDR3 1600 memory,  CD/DVD drive 24x, GTX 660 TI 2GB gfx card for $1173, with free shipping to a local Walmart.

     

    You can change the graphic card out to a GTX 680 2 GB from EVGA $1428 total.  The GTX 660 TI was pretty comparable to new parts from Newegg (think around $10-20), trying to pick the same quality item.  The GTX 680 build was off by around $60-80 I think.

     

    The big thing is you are going to probably get a 500 or so watt generic power supply, if you could choose the power supply option, I would have more confidience in it.  Any prebuild is probably going to be like that, unless you can choose the PS.

     

    The price comparisson was on the same part if I could find it, you can always bargain shop for their sales and I am sure save a good deal more on Newegg.

    Generally I wouldn't advise buying pre-built but by what I have seen and heard IBuyPower is a good middle ground solution (decent rigs, decent prices), lemme see what I can rustle up for you:

    http://ibuypower.com/Store/Gamer_Paladin_D827 - slightly over your 1250 ideal budget but you get two games thrown in free (Tomb Raider and Bioshock Infinity) ^^.

    image
  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by dauntSilver

    ok I'll bump it up to $1500.. as an ABSOLUTE maximum (since i get paid friday). preferred around $1000-1250

    and as far as equipment goes, I can salvage a monitor, speakers, mouse and keyboard. I have nothing else though, not even a case.

    and i pretty much just want this computer for gaming tbh. I mean I always have my laptop for documents and such.. I can always upgrade the storage capacity later if I really need it, cant I? so yes, around 256 gb storage capacity is fine with me. and whichever you think is better, windows 7 or 8.. Ive always heard 7 is better though. so probably windows 7.

    Thank you for that information.  I'll start with what I would consider baseline that will provide a very decent gaming machine falling just under $1200 before S&H (this varies too widely for me to calculate plus you could opt for "free shipping" by using a 30-day free trail).  Afterwards I'll post some upgrade options that you can either take or leave depending on how comfortable you are going over the original budget.  I'll try and stick with one vendor to make things easier (though shopping around when it comes time to buy it is always a good thing).  I use a Chrome Web Browser extension called Newzon that allows me to automatically compare Newegg prices to Amazon.  It makes life a LOT easier.

     

    This can be found under public wish lists as your name "dauntSilver".  Though I've found it usually takes time to post up.

    Qty. Image Product Description Unit Price Savings Total Price
    1 SAMSUNG DVD Burner SATA Model SH-224BB
    SAMSUNG DVD Burner SATA Model SH-224BB - OEM
    Model #:SH-224BB
    Item #:N82E16827151256
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $15.99   $15.99
    1 LIAN LI PC-K65 Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    LIAN LI PC-K65 Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    Model #:PC-K65
    Item #:N82E16811112354
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $89.99 -$20.00 Instant $69.99
    1 SAPPHIRE 100354XTL Radeon HD 7870 XT w/Boost 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card
    SAPPHIRE 100354XTL Radeon HD 7870 XT w/Boost 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card
    Model #:100354XTL
    Item #:N82E16814202024
    Return Policy:VGA Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    Mail in Rebate Card
    $259.99 -$10.00 Instant $249.99
    1 SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze 620W ATX12V V2.3 / EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
    SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze 620W ATX12V V2.3 / EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
    Model #:M12II 620 Bronze
    Item #:N82E16817151095
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $124.99 -$35.00 Instant $89.99
    1 CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    Model #:CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    Item #:N82E16820233196
    Return Policy:Memory Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $55.99   $55.99
    1 ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    Model #:P8Z77-V LK
    Item #:N82E16813131837
    Return Policy:Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
    In Stock
    Mail in Rebate Card
    $149.99   $149.99
    1 Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
    Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
    Model #:BX80637I53570K
    Item #:N82E16819116504
    Return Policy:CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
    In Stock
    $229.99   $229.99
    1 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
    Model #:GFC-02050
    Item #:N82E16832116986
    Return Policy:Software Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $99.99   $99.99
    1 ARCTIC Freezer i30 CPU Cooler for Intel with 120mm PWM Fan and 4 Direct Contac Heat Pipes
    ARCTIC Freezer i30 CPU Cooler for Intel with 120mm PWM Fan and 4 Direct Contac Heat Pipes
    Model #:ACFZI30
    Item #:N82E16835186058
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $49.99 -$10.00 Instant $39.99
    1 Crucial M4 CT256M4SSD2 2.5Crucial M4 CT256M4SSD2 2.5" 256GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    Model #:CT256M4SSD2
    Item #:N82E16820148443
    Return Policy:Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
    In Stock
    $209.99 -$16.00 Instant $193.99
    Subtotal: $1,195.90
     

    The total price for the exact same parts on Amazon were nearly identical.  The video card comes with a rebate for two free games too.  Amazon doesn't carry the Lian Li case in this build so I swapped it for a Cooler Master CM Storm Enforcer case instead.

    Speaking of cases those are very much a personal preference so I went ahead and picked the ones I did based on ease of use for a first time builder (both are standard layouts) and cost effectiveness.  The Lian Li is as basic looking as it gets while the Coolermaster case is a bit more "modern gamer" themed.  I also tried to keep a similar "theme" in the color scheme of parts without overspending just for the sake of it.

     

    That leaves you with about $300 you can play with should you decide you want to spend up to your maximum (and you get free shipping via the 30-day free trial on either Amazon or Newegg).  Here are some basic options:

    1. Add a hard drive for storage purpose beyond what the solid state drive can offer.  This is actually quite typical these days.

    2. Add an additional solid state drive.  Personally I would opt for the above but some people want everything to be fast. 

    3. Upgrade to a larger solid state drive.  Not a bad choice if you were going to choose 2 solid state drives anyway 

    4. Add a sound card.  While most people are fine with on-board sound if you are an audiphile this is a good option.

    5. Add a second GPU.  This has the potential to boost gaming performance substantially but it's a gamble based on proper coding for the game to work with Xfire/SLI.  This might also require an upgrade to the power supply.  Before going this route I'd choose the next option first.

    6. Upgrade your GPU.  $299 for the 7950, $399 for the 7970 and $429 for the 7970GHz edition (AMD's top single GPU card).  You also have the option of Nvidia but I would personally only recommend the GTX 670 at $349 if you were going to.

    7. Add more Ram.  Really 8Gb for gaming today is enough but 16Gb isn't really all that expensive so what the hell.

    8. Choose a different case.  I wouldn't recommend you go below $60 on cases as at that point you are getting to where the companies are having to cut corners.  That said there are great cases at the $100-$200 mark but remember for the most part you are paying for looks and convenience more than performance at that point.  This one is very personal so I won't delve too far into what you "should" look for.

    9. Pay a local brick and mortor computer store to put it all together for you and provide a warranty for their services.  If you are gun shy about building your own system this is THE best use of the extra cash.  Just be sure you do a little research on the builders before you hand over your money to ensure they are reputable.

    There are a lot of other ways you could spend that money but the ones I listed above is where I would begin if I were you.  If you are satisfied with the original build and the peripherals (monitor/mouse/keyboard/speaker or headset and surge protector) you have could use an upgrade then I would probably prioritize those first.  That is especially true if you don't have a quality surge protector.  

     

    EDIT:  Just to give you an idea of what it would cost to build a "similar" system on iBuyPowers website feel free to compare here.  Be aware the two major differences are the CPU cooler (liquid vs air) and GPU in the iBuyPower build is actually worse than the one I selected.  That XT branding means is actually a Tahiti chip, the same that are in the AMD 7900 series cards.  This build was the closest I could get with their parts selector.  Windows 7 and 8 are the same price.

     

    image 2013 Paladin E
    http://www.ibuypower.com
    Case 1 x CoolerMaster Storm Enforcer Gaming Case-Black
    Processor 1 x Intel® Core™ i5-3570K Processor (4x 3.40GHz/6MB L3 Cache)-Intel Core i5-3570K
    Motherboard 1 x ASUS P8Z77-V LK -- 2x PCI-E 3.0 x16, 4x USB 3.0
    Memory 1 x 8 GB [4 GB X2] DDR3-1600 Memory Module-Corsair or Major Brand
    Video Card 1 x AMD Radeon HD 7870 - 2GB - HIS IceQ - Cooler, Quieter-Single Card
    Case Lighting None
    Power Supply 1 x 650 Watt - Corsair CMPSU-650TXV2-Free Upgrade to 750 Watt Corsair CMPSU-750TXV2 ($20 Savings)
    Processor Cooling 1 x Corsair Hydro Series H60 Liquid CPU Cooling System-Standard 120mm Fan
    Video Card Brand 1 x Major Brand Powered by AMD or NVIDIA
    Primary Hard Drive 1 x 240 GB Corsair Neutron GTX SSD-Single Drive
    Data Hard Drive None
    2nd Optical Drive None
    Optical Drive 1 x 24X Dual Format/Double Layer DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW Drive-Black
    Sound Card 1 x 3D Premium Surround Sound Onboard
    Speaker System None
    Network Card 1 x Onboard LAN Network (Gb or 10/100)
    Monitor None
    Operating System 1 x Windows 8 + Office 2010 Trial [Free 60-Day !!!]-64-bit
    Warranty 1 x 3 Year Standard Warranty Service
    Rush Service 1 x Rush Service Fee (not shipping fee)-No Rush Service, Estimate Ship Out in 5~10 Business Days
    Video Camera None
    Meter Display None
    Flash Media Reader / Writer None
    2nd Monitor None
    Free Stuff 1 x [FREE Game Download] - Tomb Raider + Bioshock Infinite-Free with purchase of any AMD Radeon HD 7800 Series Graphics Card
    Free Stuff 1 x [FREE Game Download] - Sleeping Dogs-Free with purchase of AMD Radeon HD 7870 or above
    iBUYPOWER Labs - Noise Reduction None
    iBUYPOWER Labs - Internal Expansion None
    iBUYPOWER PowerDrive None
    Intel Smart Response Technology None
    Case Engraving Service None
    Subtotal $1,333.00
     
  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member
    Originally posted by miguksaram
    Originally posted by dauntSilver

    ok I'll bump it up to $1500.. as an ABSOLUTE maximum (since i get paid friday). preferred around $1000-1250

    and as far as equipment goes, I can salvage a monitor, speakers, mouse and keyboard. I have nothing else though, not even a case.

    and i pretty much just want this computer for gaming tbh. I mean I always have my laptop for documents and such.. I can always upgrade the storage capacity later if I really need it, cant I? so yes, around 256 gb storage capacity is fine with me. and whichever you think is better, windows 7 or 8.. Ive always heard 7 is better though. so probably windows 7.

    Thank you for that information.  I'll start with what I would consider baseline that will provide a very decent gaming machine falling just under $1200 before S&H (this varies too widely for me to calculate plus you could opt for "free shipping" by using a 30-day free trail).  Afterwards I'll post some upgrade options that you can either take or leave depending on how comfortable you are going over the original budget.  I'll try and stick with one vendor to make things easier (though shopping around when it comes time to buy it is always a good thing).  I use a Chrome Web Browser extension called Newzon that allows me to automatically compare Newegg prices to Amazon.  It makes life a LOT easier.

     

    This can be found under public wish lists as your name "dauntSilver".  Though I've found it usually takes time to post up.

    Qty. Image Product Description Unit Price Savings Total Price
    1 SAMSUNG DVD Burner SATA Model SH-224BB
    SAMSUNG DVD Burner SATA Model SH-224BB - OEM
    Model #:SH-224BB
    Item #:N82E16827151256
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $15.99   $15.99
    1 LIAN LI PC-K65 Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    LIAN LI PC-K65 Black Aluminum / Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
    Model #:PC-K65
    Item #:N82E16811112354
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $89.99 -$20.00 Instant $69.99
    1 SAPPHIRE 100354XTL Radeon HD 7870 XT w/Boost 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card
    SAPPHIRE 100354XTL Radeon HD 7870 XT w/Boost 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 CrossFireX Support Video Card
    Model #:100354XTL
    Item #:N82E16814202024
    Return Policy:VGA Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    Mail in Rebate Card
    $259.99 -$10.00 Instant $249.99
    1 SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze 620W ATX12V V2.3 / EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
    SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze 620W ATX12V V2.3 / EPS 12V V2.91 SLI Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
    Model #:M12II 620 Bronze
    Item #:N82E16817151095
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $124.99 -$35.00 Instant $89.99
    1 CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    Model #:CML8GX3M2A1600C9B
    Item #:N82E16820233196
    Return Policy:Memory Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $55.99   $55.99
    1 ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
    Model #:P8Z77-V LK
    Item #:N82E16813131837
    Return Policy:Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
    In Stock
    Mail in Rebate Card
    $149.99   $149.99
    1 Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
    Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
    Model #:BX80637I53570K
    Item #:N82E16819116504
    Return Policy:CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
    In Stock
    $229.99   $229.99
    1 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit
    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM
    Model #:GFC-02050
    Item #:N82E16832116986
    Return Policy:Software Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $99.99   $99.99
    1 ARCTIC Freezer i30 CPU Cooler for Intel with 120mm PWM Fan and 4 Direct Contac Heat Pipes
    ARCTIC Freezer i30 CPU Cooler for Intel with 120mm PWM Fan and 4 Direct Contac Heat Pipes
    Model #:ACFZI30
    Item #:N82E16835186058
    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy
    In Stock
    $49.99 -$10.00 Instant $39.99
    1 Crucial M4 CT256M4SSD2 2.5Crucial M4 CT256M4SSD2 2.5" 256GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
    Model #:CT256M4SSD2
    Item #:N82E16820148443
    Return Policy:Limited Replacement Only Return Policy
    In Stock
    $209.99 -$16.00 Instant $193.99
    Subtotal: $1,195.90
     

    The total price for the exact same parts on Amazon were nearly identical.  The video card comes with a rebate for two free games too.  Amazon doesn't carry the Lian Li case in this build so I swapped it for a Cooler Master CM Storm Enforcer case instead.

    Speaking of cases those are very much a personal preference so I went ahead and picked the ones I did based on ease of use for a first time builder (both are standard layouts) and cost effectiveness.  The Lian Li is as basic looking as it gets while the Coolermaster case is a bit more "modern gamer" themed.  I also tried to keep a similar "theme" in the color scheme of parts without overspending just for the sake of it.

     

    That leaves you with about $300 you can play with should you decide you want to spend up to your maximum (and you get free shipping via the 30-day free trial on either Amazon or Newegg).  Here are some basic options:

    1. Add a hard drive for storage purpose beyond what the solid state drive can offer.  This is actually quite typical these days.

    2. Add an additional solid state drive.  Personally I would opt for the above but some people want everything to be fast. 

    3. Upgrade to a larger solid state drive.  Not a bad choice if you were going to choose 2 solid state drives anyway 

    4. Add a sound card.  While most people are fine with on-board sound if you are an audiphile this is a good option.

    5. Add a second GPU.  This has the potential to boost gaming performance substantially but it's a gamble based on proper coding for the game to work with Xfire/SLI.  This might also require an upgrade to the power supply.  Before going this route I choose the next option first.

    6. Upgrade your GPU.  $299 for the 7950, $399 for the 7970 and $429 for the 7970GHz edition (AMD's top single GPU card).  You also have the option of Nvidia but I would personally only recommend the GTX 670 at $349 if you were going to.

    7. Add more Ram.  Really 8Gb for gaming today is enough but 16Gb isn't really all that expensive so what the hell.

    8. Choose a different case.  I wouldn't recommend you go below $60 on cases as at that point you are getting to where the companies are having to cut corners.  That said there are great cases at the $100-$200 mark but remember for the most part you are paying for looks and convenience more than performance at that point.  This one is very personal so I won't delve too far into what you "should" look for.

    9. Pay a local brick and mortor computer store to put it all together for you and provide a warranty for their services.  If you are gun shy about building your own system this is THE best use of the extra cash you can possible consider.  Just be sure you do a little research on the builders before you hand over your money to ensure they are reputable.

    There are a lot of other ways you could spend that money but the ones I listed above is where I would begin if I were you.  If you are satisfied with the original build and the peripherals (monitor/mouse/keyboard/speaker or headset and surge protector) you have could use an upgrade then I would probably prioritize those first.  That is especially true if you don't have a quality surge protector.  

     

    Hmm... my only grip with the above is the Asus MB, prefer Gigabyte or hell even MSI over Asus (had a bad experience with my 2nd desktop, got a defective Asus MB, spent a couple of years learning how to read lips because I had a choice between being able to hear something or see something, installing both drivers at once shot one of em up (usually the first installed) ).

    image
  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Dihoru

    Hmm... my only grip with the above is the Asus MB, prefer Gigabyte or hell even MSI over Asus (had a bad experience with my 2nd desktop, got a defective Asus MB, spent a couple of years learning how to read lips because I had a choice between being able to hear something or see something, installing both drivers at once shot one of em up (usually the first installed) ).

    Asus, Gigabyte, MSI and these days AsRock are all pretty much equal so it usually boils down to preference here too.  They all offer similar performance at a given price point and so it's usually experiences such as yours that determines which to use/not use.  Much like AMD vs Nvidia.  Although currently AMD offers more bang for your buck at just about every price point (minus the Titan mind you).  For the record my computer runs an AsRock board while my wifes uses a Gigabyte.

  • dauntSilverdauntSilver Huntsville, ALPosts: 146Member
    would it be better if I got an Intel core i7 processor instead of an i5?
  • miguksarammiguksaram Fort Meade, MDPosts: 826Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by dauntSilver
    would it be better if I got an Intel core i7 processor instead of an i5?

    For strickly gaming purposes into the next few years I, and many others, would argue it's not worth the cost benefit.  That is roughly a $100 difference that you MIGHT see a BENEFIT from in a VERY SMALL pool of games.  That same $100 on the otherhand could be spent on any number of others options I listed and you would see direct benefits that are gauranteed.

    An Intel i7 3770k's only real benefit over the Intel i5 3570k I listed is the potential to utilize virtual cores.  The problem is that is only a benefit if the coding of the software allows the program to use more than the 4 physical cores present in both CPUs.  Considering that most games only take advantage or 1 or 2 cores at current, with the aforementioned small portion using the full 4, it's just not worth the cost unless you have the extra money to throw around.  And by that I mean you have opted for all the upgrades I listed and still have another $100 to throw at it.

    Remember this only applies to a pure gaming machine.  There are photo/video editing programs that would highly benefit from the extra virtual cores but you stated this machines purpose was gaming so I provided an appropriate build with that in mind.

  • jimdandy26jimdandy26 salem, ORPosts: 527Member

    http://pcpartpicker.com/p/GJT5

     

    ^ that site is pro too :)

    Really when it comes to peripherals those will be up to you. I included base low cost stuff just to show you rough estimate.

    I did battle with ignorance today, and ignorance won.

    To exercise power costs effort and demands courage. That is why so many fail to assert rights to which they are perfectly entitled - because a right is a kind of power but they are too lazy or too cowardly to exercise it. The virtues which cloak these faults are called patience and forbearance.

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