Help me build my roommate a gaming rig for $800.

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by kershner25, Oct 6, 2011.

  1. kershner25

    kershner25 Member

    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 260 896 MB
    Hey everybody - I've built two gaming-grade desktops. I loved immersing myself in the technical knowledge that is required leading up to placing your order for a new PC. I spent months researching. That was three years ago now, and I'm pretty much out of the loop when it comes down to the real specific pros/cons of certain hardware pieces. My roommate wants me to help him build a gaming PC for the barrage of kickass games coming this winter. He wants to spend roughly $800-$1000, and as always, the higher the value:price ratio the better.

    He already has a monitor for the time being, and is looking at an HDD for now; he'll get a SSD at a later date. I want to grab him no less than a GTX560, since those seem to be the best price point/performance from what I've seen (maybe you can tell me differently).

    One last thing, both him and I would prefer to use NewEgg, since I love their customer service/shipping, and he can pay monthly via the preferred account.

    So, guys, help me out here! I really appreciate it!
     
  2. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    Does he need a mouse, a mousemat, a keyboard, headphones/speakers, Windows?
     
  3. kershner25

    kershner25 Member

    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 260 896 MB
    He's got all the little things covered, like mouse/keyboard/speakers. I've got enough know-how to handle most of the less-flashy things, like ram/PSU.

    And since I've basically already decided on what GPU to get (what do you guys think of this one http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130604), the most help I need is in the CPU/Mobo area. I want to get the absolute best bang/buck combo I can get for about ~$300 for the pair.

    Any ideas?

    Edit: He's probably going to need a copy of Windows, but will be able to grab it for cheap as hell at either his or my school.
     
  4. Anaksulnamun

    Anaksulnamun Member

    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Onboard 64Mb
    Simple

    Simple my friend, just read the guru3d buyer guide for this
    For example, here is my recommendation: z68 + core i5 2300 sandy bridge + ATI
    Just search newegg for the best price ...
    1. Why z68, why core i5 2300? $110 + $180
    Z68 chipset is obvious, since this is currently the best and the most affordable chipset for mainboard now... (ASrock is good, and reasonable :D)
    Sandy bridge? No doubt about this. Why core i5 2300? The cheapest among those i5 ... (it wont gain you a 5fps gain if ya using i5-2400 (3.3ghz vs 3.1ghz) - so, save yourself $10 on the CPU)
    2. ATI 6950 1GB $240
    Well, look at this VGA chart on Guru3d, this buddy has 10% more horse power than 560TI, and you only need to spend $20 more...
    Do not bother to consider buying a 2GB version, since our tests show that they have the same performance...
    3. A mouse, it a must-have for FPS game :D $50
    When I use the machine gun, I choose a low DPI (400dpi) for running and quick navigation, but when it is the time for aiming on my sniper gun, I will change to high DPI (1600dpi) so that I can aim precisely and ...headshot those bad-as* :biggun::biggun::biggun:
    Just a entry level lase mouse with dpi switching is good my friend, and ya wont need more than 1600pdi, so just grab a Razer ;)
    4. Case - choose on mid-tower case, it okay, ... ~$80
    5. Soundcard - just choose a asus xonar card, it's good, otherwise, a Creative card is good too ~$50
    Well, hmm, I wont dive in speakers, since it will be personal choice, but ya just need a good 5.1 system (BTW, dont fall for the ...high power trick, because when ya use 100W - ya neighbor will sue ya for sure :D)
    Well, ... just some recommendation :pc1:

    P.S
    For RAM, just grab some good 1600Mhz RAM, a 4gb ram will suffice (and don't choose high CAS whatsoever, since xbitlabs has already tested them ... no performance gain, ;) )
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011

  5. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    Here's what I'd get

    Mobo Asrock Z68 Pro3 $105 OR Asus P8Z68-V LE $130
    CPU i5-2500K $220 + Coolermaster 212 Evo $35
    GPU MSI 6950 2GB $255 (after rebate) (faster, more vram and better cooling than evga 560 ti)
    RAM G.Skill Value 1333 2x4GB $42
    HDD Samsung F3 1TB 7200RPM $60
    ODD DVDRW $20
    Sound Asus Xonar DG $20 (after rebate)
    PSU XFX Core 650W $60 (after rebate)
    Case Cooler Master HAF 912 $60 (+ optionally Coolermaster Megaflow 200mm fan $20 + voltage control cable)

    ~$900

    If the price is too high, I'd swap to i5-2400 at $190 (with boxed cooler which I've heard isn't too bad noise-wise) rather than skimp on the video card.
     
  6. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    Actually it's 3.4Ghz vs 3.1Ghz. 300Mhz more for just $10? Why not.

    Some games already utilise more than 1GB at 1080p, and that number can only increase in the future. 2GB is less likely to require an upgrade soon. Secondly, a 2GB card will have much better resale value in a time when over 1GB is the standard for 1080p gaming

    Highly recommend against that if he already has a mouse. I use a 400DPI mouse at 1080p, it works just fine

    "No performance gain" also applies to 1600mhz ram VS 1333mhz ram.
     
  7. Anaksulnamun

    Anaksulnamun Member

    Messages:
    17
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Onboard 64Mb
    http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/memory/display/sandy-bridge-ddr3.html
    DDR3 SDRAM for Sandy Bridge: Choosing the Best Memory for LGA1155 Platform
    [​IMG]
    Well it DOES make a differences
    [​IMG]
    BTW, 1600Mhz is the norm now ;), ... :D and it is cheap
     
  8. Xtreme1979

    Xtreme1979 Maha Guru

    Messages:
    1,328
    Likes Received:
    26
    GPU:
    ROG Strix RTX 2070
    ASUS P8Z68-V LX LGA 1155 Intel Z68 $129.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131781
    Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz $219.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115072

    In the process of completing three builds with these components. First one is done and I must say I am impressed with the quality from ASUS, except the flimsy and plain back panel. UEFI BIOS is very well done. I know this is $50 over your ideal budget, but the 2500K is an excellent choice for gaming. If you had to come down I suppose you could look at the i5-2400 SNB.

    Intel Core i5-2400 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz $189.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115074
     
  9. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    According to those graphs, lower timings offer just as much extra performance as higher MHz. So why do you say faster timings aren't worth it, but 1600MHz is?

    Secondly, let's break this down. 1600MHz CL9 vs 1333Mhz CL9 at stock CPU clocks (since you recommended at locked multiplier CPU). First graph: 50.9 vs 50.6 fps = 0.6% faster. Second graph: 90.79fps vs 90.71fps = 0.03% faster. 1600MHz RAM costs $10 more. Worth it for gaming? No.

    Also, 1600Mhz is not the norm. 1333Mhz is the norm, as it is recommended by Intel.

    @Xtreme1979
    P8Z68-V LE costs the same as LX
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  10. Agent-A01

    Agent-A01 Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    11,412
    Likes Received:
    923
    GPU:
    3080Ti Strix H20
    Look at dat performance gain ^^ (see chart)

    And 400 DPI is crap, guessing you have never used a high quality gaming mouse?

    I cant go back to low dpi mouse
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011

  11. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    And look at my reply to it.

    Why is it crap? Did you not know that whether it's enough for accurate on-screen movement depends on the user's in-game sensitivity setting? Also, DPI isn't a very important determinant of what is a good mouse. It's much more important that the mouse is reliable, and the right size and weight for your palm and the way you grip the mouse.

    I have used Logitech MX518, G500 and Steelseries Ikari. I prefer Microsoft Wheel Mouse Optical 1.1a to all of those (I have it modded to 500hz).
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  12. Agent-A01

    Agent-A01 Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    11,412
    Likes Received:
    923
    GPU:
    3080Ti Strix H20
    i opened up this reply before you posted yours.

    I dont like logitech, and no DPI is what determines accuracy. 1600 DPI with lower sensitivity is way more accurate than 400 dpi with a higher sensitivity; and of course quality of mouse and ergonomics is important too.

    Who cares about $10? Id rather get the extra performance and be more future proof for CPU limited games like CIV 5 shows. 5fps from 1333 to 1600? Good enough for me.
     
  13. kershner25

    kershner25 Member

    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 260 896 MB
    Awesome guys, thanks for all the input so far. Here's a quick build I've thrown together. Please critique it piece by piece, let me know where I can trim down the price a little bit, where I can get more bang for the buck.

    ASRock Z68 PRO3 LGA 1155 Mobo - $129.99
    Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz CPU - $219.99
    COOLER MASTER Storm Scout Case - $82.99 (what do you guys think about this case? I love the features like cable management)
    EVGA GTX 560ti - $249.99. I know you guys all recommend ATI, but I've had way too many problems in the past with hardware/driver issues. nVidia or nothing for me!
    Corsair 650w PSU - $84.99
    Corsair 2x4gb Ram - $51.99 (when did RAM get so goddamn cheap?!)
    WD 1.5TB HDD - $64.99
    Generic Sony Optical Drive - $16.99

    TOTAL: $876.92

    Now, the one thing this build is missing is a CPU cooler. Please recommend me one. Preferably one that is not a super pain in the ass to install like my Sunbeam Core Contact Freezer. Thanks guys.
     
  14. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    DPI is bottlenecked by monitor resolution. There comes a point when mouse movement simply becomes pixel-precise at a given centimeters/360 turn, and any DPI above that point will not be any more accurate. Other than that, the mouse doesn't need to be pixel precise. Even far away targets consist of dozens of pixels, so it really doesn't matter if it's pixel precise or not. What matters is your skill at aiming accurately. High DPI is a marketing trick and it's successful because uninformed people like yourself think that "bigger is better".

    @ Kershner

    Nice, that corsair PSU has $10 off deal on it :). XFX 650W is the same price and from the same manufacturer (seasonic), but it comes with 4 PCIe connectors in case you ever go dual-GPU (could handle two 150W GPUs like 6870), but at that price both XFX and Corsair are great.

    Galaxy 560 Ti is just $200. All 560 Ti overclock easily, you could just set it to EVGA SC speeds yourself. Another option is Gigabyte dual-fan cooled 560 ti for $205, or MSI Twin Frozr for $225.

    Storm Scout is a decent case :thumbsup:
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2011
  15. kershner25

    kershner25 Member

    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    Nvidia GTX 260 896 MB
    Thanks for the input - is Galaxy a trusted enough brand to where I could safely spend $50 less? I've had two different EVGA cards now and they have both been solid as hell. Come with the EVGA Precision tuner for super easy O/Cing/fan management, and the step-up lifetime warranty program. Anyone here used a Galaxy card?
     

  16. eclap

    eclap Banned

    Messages:
    31,495
    Likes Received:
    4
    GPU:
    Palit GR 1080 2000/11000
    what you picked is pretty much identical to what I have performance wise . I put my rig together yesterday and overclocked the cpu to 4.5ghz with no issues whatsoever. It's a monster compared to my old q6600 rig. really love it. you will too! not sure about Galaxy, I've never used their products but maybe go for the MSI Twin Frozr and only save $25 compared to the EVGA one. That MSI one will overclock really well and run cool and quiet.
     
  17. eclap

    eclap Banned

    Messages:
    31,495
    Likes Received:
    4
    GPU:
    Palit GR 1080 2000/11000
    hmmm... the LE costs a good £30 more in the UK. but the LX is just good enough imho.
     
  18. eclap

    eclap Banned

    Messages:
    31,495
    Likes Received:
    4
    GPU:
    Palit GR 1080 2000/11000
    I don't care about $10 either but you're missing the point. If you're buying say 10 components, than shaving off $10-$15 on each makes a massive difference when your budget is tight and you have to pay mortgage next week.

    EDIT: and why don't you like Logitech? I'm no brand fanboy but I have a logitech mouse, keyboard, wheel and speakers. All of these products work great for me and I've never had a single problem with them.
     
  19. lehtv

    lehtv Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    3,093
    Likes Received:
    0
    GPU:
    N/A
    Yeh I know it's meant to cost more, meant to say that the LE is currently the same price on newegg :)

    @Kershner

    Well, Galaxy certainly isn't as popular as the eminent EVGA. I don't know, they're a smaller company and their customer service may not be the best but apart from that I don't see any reason to avoid them

    BTW there's also a rebate deal on the EVGA so it's not quite $50 more expensive in the end. You'd be fine with it I'm sure, I'm just giving you options where you can save money or get a better cooler for the same price... Actually, the Gigabyte one is the best of both worlds
     
  20. dcx_badass

    dcx_badass Ancient Guru

    Messages:
    9,978
    Likes Received:
    1
    GPU:
    Palit GTX 1060 6GB
    They can't be worse than EVGA, their EU customer support is none existant.
     

Share This Page