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Custom PC Build (Techies..GIH!)


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#1 diesel_3

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 02:19 PM

Hey Gaming Forumers,
So, I have decided that it's time to finally custom build a PC after only ever owning pre-builts.

Back in 2009 I bought the computer I am using now just for a lower level gaming computer and it's a Gateway FX-6800-01e

Specs:

Intel i7 CPU 920 @ 2.67ghz
12 GB RAM
Nvidia GeForce GTX 285

Although the CPU/RAM is decent, I definitely need to upgrade my video card and I can get an i5 CPU that has a faster processor. (Not sure if that lingo makes sense, been doing research to figure all this out haha)

My big hang up is trying to find parts that are compatible (Mobo, CPU, vid card, etc)

I popped the panel off of my current computer and it looks like I COULD salvage the PSU because it's 750W and the HD/Optical Drive, but I figured it would probably just be easier to keep this one in tact and then piece out a brand new rig hopefully for around 800-1000 dollars.

Anyways, I've been looking at newegg, tigerdirect and NCIX for pricing, but i'm mostly looking for help from the tech savvy computer guys in here to help me get the best bang for the buck build.

Thanks!
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#2 Rhinogator

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 02:21 PM

i5 with 8-12 gb ram and a gtx 660 should be good enough on 1080p resolution.
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#3 diesel_3

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 02:35 PM

i5 with 8-12 gb ram and a gtx 660 should be good enough on 1080p resolution.


I've been reading the AMD vs Intel debates online and just reading reviews and it seems AMD is definitely more budget friendly than intel and gets the job done, is it really THAT big of a difference between AMD and Intel?

I have been looking at this CPU, looks cheap and it's a faster processor than what I have now (I think)

http://www.newegg.ca...N82E16819103727
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#4 Rhinogator

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Posted 27 January 2013 - 05:09 PM

i have that cpu in my 2nd, older rig and its a pain in the ass. It overheats easily, and has very underwhelming performance. Not to mention the stockcooler is very inefficient. From my personal experience at least.

The newer generation AMD processors (am3+) are pretty good though, if you are tighter on budge. However when it comes to gaming, amd processors will sometimes bottleneck you if you have a good graphics card. If your budge is 800 (for a new rig) you could easily get and i5 for sure, after tax.
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#5 ultraman7k

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 06:37 PM

As it stands, I would try and stay away from AMD processors as much as you can. I used to be an AMD die hard (at least when I had a PC) and switched to intel part way through the Phenom II series because the difference was just that substantial. Sure the AMD ran pretty cool, but it seriously bottlenecked my gaming.

Looking at your system, you had a pretty decent run with it i7 + 285GTX was no slouch back in the day. That being said, it was a lower end i7, but that's irrelevant.

For gaming, you still don't need anything more than an i5, unless you plan to do a lot of video encoding and such...that's where the i7 really shines. I dare say you won't even be able to notice the differences in gaming i5 vs i7.

Of course, if you wanted to keep most of your rig, I suppose the only thing you would have to change would be Motherboard/CPU/GPU.

Then again, it is a Gateway, so I'd be very, very leary about keeping that power supply, especially if you are putting in new components. Most big box pre-built computers (a la Gateway etc) tend to skimp out on the power supply and motherboard.

Here's what I found:

Nice Mobo/CPU combo:
http://www.ncix.com/...re=Bundle Deals

GPU: That is a great deal on a new 670GTX...if I had a PC that's the card I would shoot for.
http://www.ncix.com/...nc&promoid=1270

if you are unsure of PNY...you can go ASUS, but that leaves you with less money left over.
http://www.ncix.com/...US&promoid=1270

Or, if you prefer AMD graphics (I usually have in the past) this one has great bang for your buck:
http://www.ncix.com/...FX&promoid=1270

If you went AMD graphics plus the i5 combo...you'd be looking at around just around or under $700 after taxes.

If you wanted to spend up to $1000 you could easily have a more or less new computer.
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#6 TheFastOne21

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 07:58 AM

AMD is notoriously hot. So if you go that route be aware that you will need a solid heat sink to disperse it.

IMO, you can go with previous generation parts and still have a solid machine for years to come.

You can look into something like the Intel I5-2500K which if you can find is cheaper and has more OC capability than the current gen. Otherwise a current gen I3 is a solid performer. I would suggest an I5 if you can though.

AsRock makes good budget friendly mobo's. Be careful what you buy here as the mobo is the most important aspect of your PC. ASUS are good but their support is rough around the edges. MSI are also good.

Graphics are a subject of debate. To me it is true that you get what you pay for. A cheap graphics card may have the same specs as an expensive one. The difference will be in the construction. The more you pay, the longer it will last as temps will not get excessive. I would suggest EVGA if your going Nvidia route (suggested). Look at the 560ti or the 650 if you want current and budget friendly (109 on newegg). Otherwise a Radeon 7 series is good for the money.

I would suggest a minimal 4gb of memory. This is open to whatever brand, price tickles your fancy but make sure to do some research on them. Read reviews and such. Corsair offers lifetime warranty on theirs. Check their Vengeance and XMS line for deals. If you can go with 8gb or more than you will be happy you did in the long run.

PSU go with whatever you need to run the machine but get it from a reputable manufacturer. The last thing you want is the PSU going out in the middle of a fight and your PC being down and out. The PSU can affect everything if it dies, including frying other components. Also, consider future upgrades into how much power you need.

If you want to be the first into battle then splurge on a solid state. Enough space to run the OS and 1-2 of your favorite games. Then get another hard drive for everything else. If a solid state is out of the question then get a hard drive with a 7200rpm rate and SATA 6.0 if the mobo can support it (it should if it is new). You can get 1TB for under $80USD nowadays.

If you have questions or have no idea what im talking about let me know. I will try to help.

Edited by ZKassasin, 29 January 2013 - 08:01 AM.

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#7 kurtis

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 09:37 PM

Get the 660 Ti 2gb. Best bang for your buck. I just got the OC version. Amazing!
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#8 Jai604

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Posted 03 February 2013 - 03:21 AM

I'd just rebuild from scratch, honestly. Most of the parts that you'd be keeping are extremely cheap to buy, so there's no real point in keeping them.

GTX 670

i5 2500k (unlocked, clockable)

gigabyte or asus mobo (Ivy bridge)

PSU with a minimum of 750W (the GTX 670 doesn't use much power)

good after-market cooler (watercooling would be great, like a Corsair H80)

Grab a cheap, good case like an Antec One

cheap internal hard drive like a Western Digital Caviar Green (1TB is cheap)

Any optical drive will do

If you can afford it, I would grab an SSD as well. Crucial, Intel, OCZ all good brands. (I prefer Crucial and Intel, but Intel is expensive)
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#9 diesel_3

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 08:47 PM

Some very good points were brought up, Once I move and the financial situation changes a little bit, I am looking forward to building a new computer.

I'm glad I don't 'need' an i7 because some of the intel stuff is so pricey, I was having people constantly recommending AMD because it was cheaper for the build but I don't think i'll change from intel.

Jai, i'll probably hit you up on steam when I finally go to order all the components to make sure they are all compatible with each other haha.
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#10 ChenWei91

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 09:07 PM

I suggest a relatively big case. Not only will that allow your hardware more airflow, it'll also give you more room to upgrade your parts when need be.

I made the mistake of buying a small case, just because it was super cheap, but now if I want to upgrade my processor or anything; I have to buy a new case, and stuff... :(
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#11 diesel_3

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:28 AM

I suggest a relatively big case. Not only will that allow your hardware more airflow, it'll also give you more room to upgrade your parts when need be.

I made the mistake of buying a small case, just because it was super cheap, but now if I want to upgrade my processor or anything; I have to buy a new case, and stuff... :(


I was reading stuff like this online, guys said it's worth the x amount of $ to have the room and ease to install/upgrade over the frustration of a smaller case.

Are any case brands typically 'bigger' than others?
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#12 Jai604

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:46 AM

Every brand has different sizes for cases, so it really comes down to picking the model and brand that you like, and has good airflow.

Personally, I like Antec cases, and have had a few over the years. I had the Antec 900 for my previous gaming rig (which is still in working condition) and currently use an Antec One. The Antec 900 is big, and the Antec One isn't very big, but both have good airflow.

All in all, it comes down to the aesthetics, the build quality and materials used, and the airflow.

Corsair, Coolermaster, Antec, Zalman, BitFenix, Fractal Design, Thermaltake etc. all make good cases.
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#13 n00bxQb

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:53 AM

The Antec 900 was garbage. Terrible design (like, seriously, cable management is probably the worst I've ever seen), way too loud, complete dust magnet, poor quality materials.

Lian Li, Corsair, and Silverstone are generally solid cases.
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#14 ultraman7k

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 11:55 AM

I'll also put in my 2 cents about the Antec 900 from when i had one in 2009-2011

Terrible cable management,
Mismatched interior paint (inside is grey, outside casing is black...WTH) this is visible when you peek inside the side window
Wretched hard drive cage
Collects an insane amount of dust

It is also quite difficult to work in, and requires some serious modding to make it better.

To be fair, this is an older case, and it has under gone revisions and has been reborn as the 902. That being said I still wouldn't buy it.

just 3 cases off the top of my head. The advantages to having a bigger case is it makes working in it easier. Generally speaking, bigger cases have more features that help with dust management/cooling.

Bigger cases can help in upgrading, especially if they have a good sized CPU cutout, but if you are only upgrading your CPU and CPU cooler every few years, chances are you'll be taking out the motherboard anyways.

Coolermaster HAF X - my friend has this case and it is an absolute beast. Plenty of fans, plenty of space. It has a very rugged, industrial look to it.

Thermaltake Chaser MK-I - Either love the look or hate it, but this case is absolutely feature packed. I had this case and have no complaints about it whatsoever.Elevated chasis for power supply intake, easily removable dust filters wherever there is an intake, terrific cable management, the list goes on.

Corsair 650D - a good sized case with simple lines and good cable management.You can always depend on Corsair for quality.

IMO if the Chaser looked a little cleaner, and less radical I think it would have sold in droves since it has pretty much everything you'll ever need in a case.

There are of course, other companies that offer great cases. These are just a couple that i thought of.
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#15 ChenWei91

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 01:24 PM

I have the Antec One. It's way to small.

Have you thought of what peripherals you're gonna get?
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#16 Jai604

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 02:57 PM

Yeah, I suppose I should have mentioned that I wasn't recommending the Antec 900. It's an extremely old case now anyway, but even back then, yes was not good for cable management and having to clean the dust out of it all the time was a huge pain.
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#17 diesel_3

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 01:37 AM

This is probably a total noob question, but would you guys get both an HDD AND SDD or just one or the other?
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#18 Blame Obama

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:38 AM

amd is cheap but its power hungry, if you dont mind paying lil more on electricity bill.

Edited by machete, 15 February 2013 - 11:39 AM.

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#19 ultraman7k

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 11:53 AM

It is probably good practice to get an HDD + SSD in order to store all your media.

Keep in mind the bigger the SSD the faster it goes, though speeds from a 128gb are still nothing to sneeze at when compared to standard HDD drives.

Unless you like playing the install/uninstall game with your games (thereby adding additional usage on your SSD) get an SSD for your core programs (OS/browser/word etc) and a few games, and store the rest of the games you don't play as often on your HDD.

Also keeping your music/movies/documents etc on the HDD is good practice.

Also keep in mind when you get an SSD, you'll want to keep, at the very least 10% free at all times to ensure the SSD can run prime your cells to keep your flash chips in optimal condition. Failure to do so can result in early death of your SSD.

And whatever you do, do not defrag your SSD. by all means defrag your HDD, but please not your SSD.
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#20 Blame Obama

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 09:57 PM

And whatever you do, do not defrag your SSD. by all means defrag your HDD, but please not your SSD.


always wondered.. guess ill stop defraging the SSD lol
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#21 TGokou

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 11:04 AM

If your looking for cases sub $100 I'd look at the Haf 912 ($50) or Corsair Carbide 400r ($80 currently on sale) depending on preferences. Amazing reviews and excellent cooling and cable management on both. I too am looking on upgrading but I'll probably wait till black friday sales cause I was looking up certain parts and realized that those same parts were like $50 cheaper only a few months ago. Now I can't justify spending the money knowing I could've got it for less :P.
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#22 Jai604

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 01:58 PM

Yes, do yourself a favour and get an SSD. You won't regret it.
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#23 TheFastOne21

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Posted 16 February 2013 - 03:31 PM

SSD are the way to go, i agree with the others.

Check the Thermaltake Chaser MK-I case. It is huge and I have it and have been pleased with it.
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#24 NightHawkSniper

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 11:04 PM

I've been reading the AMD vs Intel debates online and just reading reviews and it seems AMD is definitely more budget friendly than intel and gets the job done, is it really THAT big of a difference between AMD and Intel?

I have been looking at this CPU, looks cheap and it's a faster processor than what I have now (I think)

http://www.newegg.ca...N82E16819103727


If you want performance don't cheap out, you will regret it
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#25 sedated

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 03:19 AM

Might want to look at buying two older video cards and SLI'ing or crossfiring them. Might be cheaper and offer somewhat the same performance as a current modern one. Pretty hard to get a good upgrade with only 1k. The high end mid range cards like the 680GT and 7970 are like 300-500. The processors or more or less the same.

Google Tom's hardware video card and processor hiearchy charts and go from there I guess. Once you know the processor and GPU, you can figure out compatible motherboards and figure out how much ram you want. An SSD is.. sort of worth it. It's not like magical or anything. It makes windows boot up like way faster, but aside from loading programs, it doesn't really do anything else for gaming or anything for the most part. I got an SSD for my operating system and then a big old normal one for storage and whatever.

Best bang for bucks would probably be a really good case, as odd as that sounds. Get a big one that you can keep and upgrade in, that has a lot of space and good airflow. It'll potentially save you from having to worry about any kind of after market cooling stuff. I guess best bang for buck video cards would be to buy two cheaper/older ones that you can do their multi-GPU feature thing. Processors and motherboards are a pain in the ass. Future proof would be 2011 series motherboards, I think. I spent 2500 on my latest upgrade, but I future proofed it to death. I made sure I won't be needing a new one for years, for whatever I would need to use it for. All I'd need to do is buy individual upgrades as I needed them. You can probably do a lot cheaper as long as you aren't hoping for maximum quality. You can kind of cheat and get a lower resolution monitor or something I guess. (I honestly don't see much of a difference between 720 and 1080p. I mean, there is a change but.. it's nothing like standard to 720p.)

Check out the Tom's Hardware heiarchy charts for sure. If you want the amazing quality in games and movies and programs and all that, save up and future proof so you don't need a whole new system in a year or two. Huge waste of money. Only kicker is it's usually cheaper to wait until new things are coming out so the current mid/high end stuff goes cheaper.
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#26 Jai604

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 05:07 AM

Oh, and if you can afford it, get a 120hz monitor (since you'll be playing CS:GO). Makes a WORLD of difference for games like counterstrike and other precision shooters.
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