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Old October 28, 2011, 07:24 AM
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Default Budget gaming computer - Advice needed on CPU, Motherboard and Graphics Card!

1. What YOUR PC will be used for. That means what types of tasks you'll be performing.
Gaming, mainly Diablo 3, Starcraft 2 and web browsing/school work.

2. What YOUR budget is. A price range is acceptable as long as it's not more than a 20% spread
So far I have spent 160 (See below). I would like to spend $400-$500 on the rest.

3. What country YOU will be buying YOUR parts from.
Canada, I have a Canadacomputers and tigerdirect close to me.

4. IF YOU have a brand preference. That means, are you an Intel-Fanboy, AMD-Fanboy, ATI-Fanboy, nVidia-Fanboy, Seagate-Fanboy, WD-Fanboy, etc, etc, etc, you get the picture.
Open to all suggestions of companies. Never build a computer nor do I have any experiences with the companies.

5. If YOU intend on using any of YOUR current parts, and if so, what those parts are.
As of right now, I have a 600w coolermaster PSU, 500gb 16mb cache hd (seagate), Asus case, monitor, keyboard, mouse and speakers.

I Need:
Video Card
CPU
Motherboard
Ram

6. IF YOU have searched and/or read similar threads.
Yes I have.

7. IF YOU plan on overclocking or run the system at default speeds.
Eventually yes, I am new at this so advice would be great.

8. WHEN do you plan to build it?
2-3 weeks

9. What resolution do you use?
1280x1024


So my question is what CPU, Motherboard, video card will give me the best bang for my budget?

I am been contemplating AMD but I have a few friends who are disappointed with them.

Thank you
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Old October 28, 2011, 11:36 AM
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Would it be worth saving a bit more and going with an i5 2500?
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Old October 28, 2011, 12:13 PM
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It would if you are planning to do any overclocking. But if not the i3 will be fine for the games you want to pllay
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Old October 28, 2011, 12:14 PM
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If you want to go over budget, of course.

However, for your budget, I recommend going low-end Sandy Bridge now and then putting the money saved towards an Ivy Bridge processor next year.

And I wouldn't touch an H61 board. Look at the expansion slot layout....or lack thereof. That board gives you zero room for future upgrades.
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Old October 28, 2011, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SKYMTL View Post
CPU= Intel i3 2120 ($130)
Canada Computers | CPU | Intel Core i3-2120 Dual-Core Socket LGA1155, 3.30Ghz, 3MB L3 Cache, 32nm (Retail Boxed) (BX80623I32120)


Mobo = Gigabyte Z68P-DS3 ($110)
Canada Computers | Motherboards | Gigabyte GA-Z68P-DS3 Socket 1155 Intel Z68 Chipset Dual-Channel DDR3 2133/1866/1600/1333/1066 MHz 2x PCI-Express GLAN 7.1-CH HD Audio mSATA 2x SATA 6.0Gb/s 4x SATA 3.0Gb/s 12xUSB 2.0 ATX


Memory = Kingston HyperX 2x2GB 1600Mhz ($31)
Canada Computers | Memory | Kingston HyperX 4GB (2x2GB) 1600MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL9 DIMM (Kit of 2) (KHX1600C9AD3K2/4G)


GPU = Zotac GTX 560 ($199)
Canada Computers | Video Cards | Zotac (ZT-50701-10M) GeForce GTX 560 1024MB nVidia GeForce GTX 560 Chipset (820Mhz) 1024MB GDDR5 (4008Mhz) Dual DVI/Mini HDMI/Display Port PCI-Express 2.0 Graphics Card

Total = $471
Those are pretty solid choices. Obviously if you can afford the bump to an i5 2400 if not going for a big OC or 2500k if OCing it would help. Also, memory is cheap, so if you can up it to 8gb just to be on the safe side (if not 4 should do for now).
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Away from home light Gamer: Acer Aspire 15.6", A8-3500m undervolt and OC to 2Ghz, 2x4gb Corsair Vengeance, Crucial M500 240gb
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Old October 28, 2011, 02:44 PM
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Will that motherboard you recommend work for when ivy bridge comes out? 1155.
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Old October 28, 2011, 02:52 PM
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<--- AMD guy

cpu/mobo combo deal $274.98: AMD A8-3850/ASUS F1A75-V PRO


Memory 29.99: Gskill Ripjaws @ 1333, 2x2gig kit



Total: 320.22 including HST or GST or w/e the gov't calls that tax i hate oh so much.

Video card: none yet, save up and buy either a discounted 6xxx series when they drop in price (when the 7xxx series comes in), or a discounted nvidia card once they too drop in price. The integrated graphics are apparently (i don't know first hand) good enough to handle sc2 at decent settings (AnandTech - The AMD A8-3850 Review: Llano on the Desktop), and should be good enough to handle d3 at a decent graphics setting, as d3 is rumored to be no where near the graphics hog that say bf3 is.

There is also rumored to be an upgrade path for the a8 apu called piledriver, so you're not stuck with a board with no upgrade path, unlike what intel usually does. And, apparently, a few of z68 boards are rumored to be incompatible with the ivy bridge upgrade if they don't have "me8 management engine firmware"( , ), which is consistent with what intel has done in the past; make you buy a new board every 2 years.

Pros:
-Money saved can buy beer.
-You can wait for some great dx11 cards to come down to a stupid price level (imagine a 6950 direct cu2 2 gig for 200 bucks on clearance)
-Mobo makes for a great HTPC (except it's not a mini/micro form factor, it's standard atx)
-Native sata 6 gig and usb 3.0 support (the listed cheap z68 board does not have usb 3.0, and only has 2 sata 6 gig connectors).
-You can run a full 6 disc raid array @ 6 Gb/s

Cons:
-core i3 is a better processor and is a much better value if you don't plan on using the integrated graphics
-z68 cheapo board is a much better value if you don't need the usb3.0 and you don't plan on running a 6Gb/s raid array with more than 2 discs.
-i3 + zotac 560 gtx probably gets better frame rates!
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Old October 28, 2011, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Masteroderus View Post
<--- AMD guy

cpu/mobo combo deal $274.98: AMD A8-3850/ASUS F1A75-V PRO


Memory 29.99: Gskill Ripjaws @ 1333, 2x2gig kit



Total: 320.22 including HST or GST or w/e the gov't calls that tax i hate oh so much.

Video card: none yet, save up and buy either a discounted 6xxx series when they drop in price (when the 7xxx series comes in), or a discounted nvidia card once they too drop in price. The integrated graphics are apparently (i don't know first hand) good enough to handle sc2 at decent settings (AnandTech - The AMD A8-3850 Review: Llano on the Desktop), and should be good enough to handle d3 at a decent graphics setting, as d3 is rumored to be no where near the graphics hog that say bf3 is.

There is also rumored to be an upgrade path for the a8 apu called piledriver, so you're not stuck with a board with no upgrade path, unlike what intel usually does. And, apparently, a few of z68 boards are rumored to be incompatible with the ivy bridge upgrade if they don't have "me8 management engine firmware"( , ), which is consistent with what intel has done in the past; make you buy a new board every 2 years.

Pros:
-Money saved can buy beer.
-You can wait for some great dx11 cards to come down to a stupid price level (imagine a 6950 direct cu2 2 gig for 200 bucks on clearance)
-Mobo makes for a great HTPC (except it's not a mini/micro form factor, it's standard atx)
-Native sata 6 gig and usb 3.0 support (the listed cheap z68 board does not have usb 3.0, and only has 2 sata 6 gig connectors).
-You can run a full 6 disc raid array @ 6 Gb/s

Cons:
-core i3 is a better processor and is a much better value if you don't plan on using the integrated graphics
-z68 cheapo board is a much better value if you don't need the usb3.0 and you don't plan on running a 6Gb/s raid array with more than 2 discs.
-i3 + zotac 560 gtx probably gets better frame rates!
I also agree with this recomendation accept i'd invest in a 8 gig kit or 2 of DDR3 1600 or faster as it proven to enhance the onboard video's preformance.
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