Building a gaming pc help

jezz8me

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Mar 27, 2008
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I am building a gaming pc and i need gamers advice of whether it is adequate.

I need to buy every part and my budget is $1000. I would prefer to buy from local stores as well so any links to sites try to have them Melbourne based/ operating in.

The current setup i am thinking of is

MSY
GFX: Generic 512MB 9600GT $182
Motherboard: Gigabyte EP35-DS3 $126
RAM: 2GB A-DATA 6400 DDR2 $45
Monitor: 19? 5ms DVI WS Asus VW193T $223
HDD: W.D. SATA 500G $110
CPU: Intel E6550 2.33GHz $190
DVD: SATA 215BK DL DVD-RW $35
Total $901

CPL
Coolermaster Elite 330 noPSU $49
Coolermaster Extreme 500W PSU $65
Total $114

Total $1020


so what is your opinion/ advice
 

nightfish

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Nov 7, 2007
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Is there no way you could increase your budget? I did a currency converter for 1000 Aussie dollars and it comes to £475 which to me strikes as a pretty small amount for a gaming PC. I can get good prices over in the UK and it still costs at least £700 for an OK gaming PC with monitor

I don't know how other people feel on this forum but I wouldn't go for a generic GFX. I would go for a trusted brand. Same with the RAM - you need something thats built well i.e. OCZ or Corsair. Nothing else compares really and its not really that expensive.
 

jezz8me

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Mar 27, 2008
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I am a 16 year old boy who works as a checkout chick so i do not have much money avaliable.

i had another rig thought out for a similar price and using non generic items

Power Supply: Codegen 530XF - $49.00
SCORPTECH

Case: Cooler Elite 330 No PSU - $49.00
COMPUTER PARTS LAND

HDD: Western Digital 500GB SATAII 16MB - $119.00
COMPUTER PARTS LAND

GFX Card: Gigabyte 512MB 9600GT - $209.00
COMPUTER PARTS LAND

RAM: Kingston 2GB 6400 - $99.00
COMPUTER PARTS LAND


Motherboard: XFX nForce 630i - $99.00
COMPUTER PARTS LAND

CPU: Intel Core Duo 4500 - $102.00
COMPUTER PARTS LAND

DVD Drive: Pioneer DVR-115DBK - $35.00
SCORPTECH

Monitor: Asus VQ193D 19" - $229
COMPUTER PARTS LAND



Total $990


If i switch motherboards it will be same price as the other



The generic GFX card i have been told does everything a branded one similar does and as effectively. It just isnt as good as a premium card.
 

cleverlymadeup

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Mar 7, 2008
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yeah save on the monitor, they'll come down in price again

you could probly save money on the dvd-drive as well, go for a lite-on or no name brand, often stuff like sony and pioneer are just rebranded no-name dvd drives but you pay for the pioneer name on the front

as for motherboard if you can go asus, i can't recommend those boards more, they are simply just awesome, i mean any board with a break away front panel jumper box is great in my book, tho their sata connectors on my board have a bit to be desired
 

Manta173

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Jan 30, 2008
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http://forum.pcmech.com/showthread.php?t=196125

Here's a thread from another site where I tried to get one for 1000 US... if you drop the keyboard and mouse (since you dont have them on your list) and downgrade the video card to an 8600gt (as in 6-12 months the 9600 will be cheaper and you can upgrade then) it would still be pretty good and cost around $1000, but I don't know that newegg delivers as cheaply to Australia.

It also explains a lot of the concerns with a build too..
 

werepossum

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Sep 12, 2007
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Have to agree with Khell - you're young, your eyes should be good with a cheap 17" LCD for a couple of years. If Oz is anything like the USA, the big box stores run some extremely good sales occassionaly but usually have high prices compared to mail order. With a monitor, it pays to raise the money for an upgrade, then wait for an excellent sale, as B&M stores usually have much better return policies to protect you from a monitor with stuck or dead pixels.

It's tempting to switch to a AMD CPU, which has better bang for the buck at the lower end, but I wouldn't do it. You may want to upgrade the CPU only, and while AMD rules the very low end you are treading, once you hit about $180 Intel begins to rapidly surpass AMD. The 45nm Core 2 Duo Wolfdale cores are extremely fast, assuming they will run on your motherboard, and an E8400 at around $200 US would make an excellent CPU-only upgrade in a year or two. For gaming and almost anything else, Intel simply owns the market from midrange up.

I would definitely not go below a 9600GT for a gaming computer, which are around $120 US after rebate. This is an extremely good card for the price; it's basically half an 8800GTS with the same (512 MB) RAM, but typically runs much faster than half an 8800GTS which runs $190 US and up after rebate. That's probably a budget buster, but you might be able to squeeze in an 8800GT; I've seen those for a little as $160 after rebate. Make sure you get a 512MB card, as there are some 256MB models sold. I think EVG and BFG Tech still have lifetime warranties (original owner, as long as the product is manufactured) and trade-up programs, if you're interested.

You might want to look at the Western Digital 640 GB drives as well. If memory serves the 500 GB models have three platters, while the new 640 MB are two-platter models with slightly faster access times at a nominal upcharge. Just make sure you're getting the new two-platter model rather than the older 640 GB two-platter model; unfortunately I think the part numbers are the same.

Two caveats to all this. First, these prices may not correlate directly into Australian dollars, since more than currency conversion is involved in price differences. Second, you didn't state what kind of games you play. Shooters and other action games usually stress the video card most, while strategic sims may stress the processer more. If the games you want to play are more CPU-limited, then and only then it might be beneficial to drop in video card strength in order to buy more CPU.
 

Joos

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Dec 19, 2007
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The Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L ([email protected]) is a much better buy. Also, it could be worth getting the Core2Duo E6550 ([email protected]). Apart from that, you are sweet. Some good points about the hard drive mentioned above is not available in Australia yet, so the 500Gb model is pretty good bang for buck.
 

werepossum

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Joos said:
The Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L ([email protected]) is a much better buy. Also, it could be worth getting the Core2Duo E6550 ([email protected]). Apart from that, you are sweet. Some good points about the hard drive mentioned above is not available in Australia yet, so the 500Gb model is pretty good bang for buck.
That sucks. I agree about the E6550, although the really good performance doesn't kick in until the E6750 or Wolfdale cores.

Here's a couple of links to a US $500 gaming PC build that might interest you, jezz8me. I should say though that the choices you made are better. Still, you might find this interesting.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cpu-graphic-game,1810.html
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cpu-graphic-game,1907.html

Lastly, here's a really good guide from ARS Technica. Brian Won discusses three different systems - the Budget Box, the Hot Rod, and the G-d Box - and discusses pros and cons of the trade-offs. I can't agree with his choice of AMD for the Budget Box if it's a gaming computer - it does give better performance now, but the trade-off is in the CPU upgrade path. Either you choose a faster Athlon X2 (not a good choice), choose a new Phenom 9850 (only really good AMD performance deal) and accept the slight throttling of your motherboard, or go to the expense and bother of replacing the motherboard with the CPU. If I were on a very tight budget, I'd prefer to get an Intel with less performance now for an easier and cheaper upgrade in the future, unless I were playing CPU-intensive games. And maybe even then.
http://arstechnica.com/guides/buyer/guide-200803.ars
 

jezz8me

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Mar 27, 2008
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I am most probably gong for the gigabyte mobo it is the best for the price i can find.

As for the monitor and the dvd drive they were the cheapest available the only other monitor available is my friends bad 15" LCD


As for the types of games i play probably mostly stradegy but some shooters and action as well.
 

Carbon016

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Nov 13, 2007
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jezz8me said:
...build...
Perfect setup, except grab the Xeon E3110 which is the same as the Wolfdale E8400, it's around the same price and is a much better processor.

You can get a basic gaming computer for around $700 US if you look around enough.
 

Joos

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Dec 19, 2007
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Carbon016 said:
jezz8me said:
...build...
Perfect setup, except grab the Xeon E3110 which is the same as the Wolfdale E8400, it's around the same price and is a much better processor.

You can get a basic gaming computer for around $700 US if you look around enough.
Yea, we are in Australia though, and the prices you get in the states, we can but dream of. A Xeon is definitely out of the ballpark here.
 

ingsoc

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Feb 12, 2008
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For the price of the E6550, you could get a quad core Phenom from AMD. They are largely not on par with Intel's quad's but better than the Core 2 for the same money and you could save some cash on the motherboard as well.

Unless you really need 500 GB of HDD space you could slash that cost by 30-40% with a 250GB drive and just pick up another one down the road. I have a 250 and have only used 160GB of space on it in the eight months I have had it and 80GB of it are game installs.

There are hitting bargain bin prices buy the older GeForce 8800GTS models with either 320 or 640MB of Ram are priced nicely if you can find one. I saw an overclocked one for $115 US. The overclocked cards used at the resolution you are talking about are nearly as fast as the 8800GTX models and are still faster than the 9600GT's and just as fast as an 8800GT. The power supply you listed should be able to handle it.

When I built my PC, I went to Maingear website. US based Maingear is a boutique PC company. They give the specs on every system they build down to components and I modeled my system on their X-cube. Here is my system and its performance in Crysis.

Intel G33 motherboard
Core2Duo E6550 stock speed
4GB Mushkin DDR2 800 RAM
250GB Western Digital HDD
XFX 8800GTS 320MB XXX edition
I have the same 500watt PSU from Coolermaster

I just built a similar system for my nephew here in the US for $545 after rebates without case and monitor. With the exception of the graphics card (I used an EVGA instead of an XFX) I used the same parts across the board. I am not sure what $545 US is in other currencies so take it with a grain of salt.

At 1280 x 1024 I can run Crysis with all settings except physics set on high (Windows XP) with no AA at a playable frame-rate (35 to 45) with no major slow-downs (drop below 25).
At 1024 x 768 I can run Crysis with all settings on high and 2x AA and get between 45 and 55 with no noticeable slow-downs.
 

jezz8me

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Mar 27, 2008
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for the sake of the future i would prefer to run on intel as i will upgrade and the intel quds seem much better. I also do feel that 500GB may be a bit of overkill but i do love my music and this alows for more lossless storage.

If i reduce the price of my HDD and motherboard i could upgrade my GFX to a non-generic and possibly a ram upgrade.

please say if you are referring more to my first or second setup



The motherboard you use seems good as it is what i need and nothing more but do you know of Australian dealers. The cheapest dealers available to me do not stock it. Is there a Gigabyte equivalently as there motherboards are highly stocked.
 

jezz8me

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Mar 27, 2008
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would there be any downsides to getting the Gigabyte GA-P31-DS3L mobo because that will safe quite a bit of money.
 

ingsoc

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Feb 12, 2008
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GIGABYTE's equivalent is the GA-G33M-S2L. Please remember that these are micro ATX boards, not full ATX boards. I prefer the smaller models as they are cheaper, largely offer comparable performance and really keep me out of trouble. If I had a full featured board with SLI or cross-fire I would be too tempted to go that route and require larger more expensive case to boot. My wife would not be pleased.

One thing about this board, pay attention to the location of the SATA connectors. Depending on the length of the Graphics Card, you may lose one or more SATA connectors and there are four of them. Based on some reviews, this board is a good over-clocker and the Core 2 Duo's over-clock very well. With DDR2 800 memory and upping the front side bus of the E6550 from 1333 to 1600 (it is very easy) you would get a processor that runs at 3.2Ghz versus 2.33 stock but more importantly, the front side bus but run at a matched speed with the memory which is a very good thing as it effectively maxes out the memory bandwidth giving you a nice boost.
 

ingsoc

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Feb 12, 2008
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The GA-P31-DS3L looks like a pretty solid offering. I have pasted a link to a trusted site that reviewed and gave it a good rating.

http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleID=2183
 

jezz8me

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Mar 27, 2008
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that looks good i do not want to get a micro mobo because mainly i find smaller things less reliable, less easy to use and you are paying for size