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Old February 24, 2011, 07:38 AM
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Default Helpless gaming PC newb needs help...Build my PC?

Hi all...new to the forums here from Medicine Hat, Alberta.

I am just getting into gaming on a PC as I have always been a console guy. Seems more and more new games coming out that I would like to play are for a PC system...so now that I have decided that is what I want to do...I am lost, and have NO idea what mobo is needed for what processor etc..

I just bought another toy so cash is low..i'd like to spend under $500. I am looking at two machines currently and would like your opinion on them...OR if you could build me one that is possibly better than those for the same. Both are under $500. One is a desktop, while the other a Laptop. I love the idea of a Laptop, but I doubt the performance is anywhere's close.

If you could help me put a pc together that is better than these I do have a Case and Hardrive with my OS on it. So I would need a new mobo, processor, ram, PSU, and a graphics card.

It does not have to be new..just in strong working order.

Anyway on to the PC's...

Gateway FX P7805u Laptop
Windows 7 Pro - Genuine
- 4GB Ram
- 280 GB HD - Only OS installed, nothing else.
- Nvidia Geforce 9800M GTS Cuda - 1GB
- Intel centrino 2. 2.26 ghz

**OR**

Intel Quad Core 3.0Ghz /w direct heatpipe contact stack cooler Q6600 OC
MSI p43-c51 motherboard
8GB DDR3, 500GB hard drive
EVGA 8800 GT 512MB
OCZ modular 500W
PSU Antec 300 Chassis
SATA LG DVD-RW /w lightscribe

**OR**

something better suited ???

Thanks in advance for any help
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Old February 24, 2011, 08:15 AM
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Well first off, I'd avoid laptops. Manufacturers charge you waaaay too much for bad parts and then you can't upgrade when they become obsolete. The desktop you noted is better, but outdated by more than a few years. It's a bit difficult to build a decent gaming rig for five bills, but you could roll with a low-priced Sandy Bridge system with an AMD Radeon HD 6850.

CPU- The 2300 is a couple bucks cheaper but it's not worth saving the five dollars.
LGA 1155 motherboards are out of commission for now due to Intel's design fail, but they should be back in due time.
RAM Honestly just pick one you like. 2x2GB kits are dirt cheap right now, but the 8GB might benefit you more.
Get yourself a nice 1TB HDD for a good price.
GPU Nice cheap 6850.

Get a 500 or 550W PSU or a 600 or 650W for CFX.

Alternatively you could go for an AMD-based system, and it will likely b significantly cheaper, but AM3 is on its way out, while Sandy Bridge is just getting warmed up.
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Old February 24, 2011, 08:32 AM
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So where would I find a mobo if I wanted to order that system?
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Old February 24, 2011, 10:16 AM
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Right now there are no sandy bridge motherboards at retailers due to a massive recall on them, in a few weeks - month we should be seeing them back at retailers however. The second system you pointed out the q6600 is not a bad machine, if you were looking at getting something then upgrading say the gpu in a few months I would probably spring for it for a budget build it's pretty good, I know my 8800GT plowed through anything I threw at it, though I do play at a smaller resolution then most (1024x768) but yea all worked well with it.
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Old February 24, 2011, 11:58 AM
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Forgot to mention a few things:

1. You'd need a case. Cases are a toss-up at that price point, you really should just get what you like.
2. I guess with Intel locking down OCing you should be fine with the stock cooler although it's never a bad idea to ditch the stupid useless hunk of aluminum.
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Old February 24, 2011, 04:06 PM
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I can tell you that you will get better price/performance by custom building, but at the cost of no tech support and only manuf. warranty on parts. Especially since you already have your own OS, you can get a lot of extra value.

I'd personally suggest getting an AMD CPU between the $90-115 mark. You won't need more than 500W, so there are some great PSUs under $50... I don't have a great memory, so I can't remember which ones... lol.
For AMD, you'll be looking at AM3 socket, either Athlon II or Phenom II... the Phenom line is better for gaming, but costs a bit more. This means that when you pick out your mobo, make sure it is AM3 socket and check that it supports DDR3 memory as it is cheaper than DDR2.

I build this for about $400 shipped & taxes: Cheap family computer ideas?

This might be a good starting point... Still, you have a bigger budget, so getting an upgraded CPU and GPU will be the first priority.
AMD phenom II x4 955 BE - price match to $127
Buy Gigabyte [GA-M68MT-S2P] Gigabyte GA-M68MT-S2P mATX AM3 GF7025 NF630A DDR3 2PCI-E1 1PCI SATA2 RAID Video Sound Motherboard - $50
could get the same PSU, but I'd suggest finding a better one @ 450-500w - $50
4GB DDR3, most brands will do - $40 (kingston value ram works well)
Optical drive multi dvd/cd +/-r/rw burner - $16-$20 (any will do)
HDD & case & OS = you own already
= That puts us at about $310 with tax.

I'm not sure if you have to buy nVidia graphics to go with the nvidia chipset on the mobo... but I think you do.
I would look at getting a GTX 460 1GB, you can get them new with mail-in-rebate for under $170 with tax or you can get a used one. Getting a used one for under $150 shipped is worth looking into, since it won't be older than 6 months.

If you want to spend any leftover cash, look to buy a after-market CPU cooler or upgrade your mobo or GPU. You can also see if there are any combo deals or any price matching you can do to get better prices.
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Old March 1, 2011, 05:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by draemn View Post
I can tell you that you will get better price/performance by custom building, but at the cost of no tech support and only manuf. warranty on parts. Especially since you already have your own OS, you can get a lot of extra value.

I'd personally suggest getting an AMD CPU between the $90-115 mark. You won't need more than 500W, so there are some great PSUs under $50... I don't have a great memory, so I can't remember which ones... lol.
For AMD, you'll be looking at AM3 socket, either Athlon II or Phenom II... the Phenom line is better for gaming, but costs a bit more. This means that when you pick out your mobo, make sure it is AM3 socket and check that it supports DDR3 memory as it is cheaper than DDR2.

I build this for about $400 shipped & taxes: Cheap family computer ideas?

This might be a good starting point... Still, you have a bigger budget, so getting an upgraded CPU and GPU will be the first priority.
AMD phenom II x4 955 BE - price match to $127
Buy Gigabyte [GA-M68MT-S2P] Gigabyte GA-M68MT-S2P mATX AM3 GF7025 NF630A DDR3 2PCI-E1 1PCI SATA2 RAID Video Sound Motherboard - $50
could get the same PSU, but I'd suggest finding a better one @ 450-500w - $50
4GB DDR3, most brands will do - $40 (kingston value ram works well)
Optical drive multi dvd/cd +/-r/rw burner - $16-$20 (any will do)
HDD & case & OS = you own already
= That puts us at about $310 with tax.

I'm not sure if you have to buy nVidia graphics to go with the nvidia chipset on the mobo... but I think you do.
I would look at getting a GTX 460 1GB, you can get them new with mail-in-rebate for under $170 with tax or you can get a used one. Getting a used one for under $150 shipped is worth looking into, since it won't be older than 6 months.

If you want to spend any leftover cash, look to buy a after-market CPU cooler or upgrade your mobo or GPU. You can also see if there are any combo deals or any price matching you can do to get better prices.
That looks very very simililar to the pc I'm about to build. Everything but that motherboard and I want a NZXT gamma mid tower case which has room for 6 fans! I'll be putting only one though. Still unsure whether a 9800gt akimbo in sli is better than one 460gtx sc? All of this on a 550 watt psu with the required 2x6 pins.
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