The Budget Gaming PC thread Page 89

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  • bodhi85uk 6 Nov 2012 18:15:22 179 posts
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    Just in case anyones in the same boat as me, and wanted too build a modest gaming machine to compliment their console rather than replace it... I've just built a:

    i3 3240 (got this rather than the 3220 that is only 100mhz less because it was out of stock, cost me an extra tenner so not really worth it, but I had the itch to build then and there, make sure you chose the 3220, you wont notice a difference- 105)
    Gigabyte B75 mobo (50)
    4gb Corsair XMS (15)
    Nvidia 650ti (was going to get the AMD 7770, as its better price/performance ratio than the 650ti but was swayed by a Free Assassins Creed 3 and GPU PhysX. Its only 35-40 more for an older gen Radeon that would pull its pants down, but like I said, budget, and also, low power consumption. (115)

    Slapped it all in a Fractal Design Core 1000 case, brilliant little thing (25)
    Novatech Modular Silent 500w PSU (these are excellent, I know for a fact they are the same PSU Corsair use for their range of supplies. How do I know this? I used to work for Novatech and know the guy who called up the factory in China and said "I like these, we want them with our name on them" (35)
    WiFi PCI-x card (10)
    DVD-RW (10)
    ...and stuck my old 250gb WD HDD that was living in the garage in a box. I had a copy of Windows 'laying around'... It boots in about 30 seconds, takes a minute or two to be snappy and responsive, but thats a mechanical HDD for you, games playing I don't even notice.

    Anyway 365ish and it plays DayZ buttery smooth on all medium details, AA is on (but low), it looks fabulous, and 2500 draw distance. It occasionally drops down to about 30fps in the middle of Cherno/Elektro for a minute or two when you first go into town, but then steadies itself. Im confident I can whack the details up a notch or two without any noticable impact on performance, I just prefer to keep it all super smooth. The only caveat I need to put in here is that I'm running on a 1280x1024 monitor, but as I said, Ive got overhead on performance at the settings I run for when my new LG IPS 1080p screen comes in the post.

    To summarise, I am extremely pleased, and urge anyone considering building a PC to question the merit of dropping a grand on a i7, and a couple of 690's, especially considering a large portion of games these days are console ports. By the time a quad core CPU and that kind of stonking card are needed, your 'future proof' upgrade will be obsolete.

    Im off to play some DayZ, laters.

    Edited by bodhi85uk at 18:26:31 06-11-2012

    Edited by bodhi85uk at 18:27:51 06-11-2012
  • Sharzam 6 Nov 2012 18:20:09 2,835 posts
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    Indeed any proper gamer GPU is better than onboard. As much as the likes of A10 are good they are not meant to replace dedicated hardware.

    In fact most systems can be turned into a game system by just adding a GPU.

    edit: Wouldnt say no to a couple of 690s thourgh. Gotta love a bit of epeen or surround 3D :)

    Edited by Sharzam at 22:45:11 06-11-2012

    Known as 'Sharzam' in 98.5% of games

  • Salaman 7 Nov 2012 10:27:48 18,959 posts
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    mikew1985 wrote:
    that through the atelco crowd salaman?

    Let us know how the remainder of the process goes, I'd be interested in trying them.
    Well it went OK this time.
    Ordered Sunday night.
    Credit card charged Monday.
    Built yesterday.
    On route to me via UPS today. I should've thought to list my work address for delivery. I'll find a "we tried to deliver" note when I get home tonight and then I'll call to change the address but it will be too late, so they'll try again at my home address tomorrow and I'll only get it on Friday. Stupid me.

    Strange procedure they use when you first order with them by credit card though.
    I ordered the first time and after 20 days they cancelled the credit card charge. No email or anything. I just happened to notice it when I logged into the site to see the status of my order.
    When I phoned them up the first time this lady looked up the order and went "I'll need your address, email and phone number". Gave it and assumed some new info or update would come via mail.
    Nothing.
    Rang the next day. This dude then explained that they call you up if you use a credit card with them for the first time. He suggested re-submitting the order but first wanted to check with his colleague. He then came back and said his colleague had re-activated the order, so I didn't have to do anything.
    Still nothing though. No email, no status change on "my account" on their site.
    Rang again. This time a 3rd chap said it's impossible to reactive a cancelled credit card order so I did have to re-submit it.
    He also said they had tried to call me regarding my credit card but had not been able to reach me. I didn't recall any missed calls from a German number though.
    Re-ordered online and had a missed call from "unknown number" two days in a row. I rang them back to see if it had been them.
    The guy on the phone said it probably was as they call regarding my credit card for added security, blah, blah but looking in the system, the order was already processed and the PC being built, ready to ship.
    So why they bothered calling me in the first place (and cancelling an order over it) I don't know since they ended up processing the second order without having gotten a hold of me.

    Anyway. That little hiccup aside, they're brilliant. I was expecting a 1 or 2 week wait.
  • altitude2k 14 Nov 2012 08:31:11 4,129 posts
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    Wonder if I could get you chaps to look over my proposed spec for a budget PC. It'll be a Christmas pressie for my little brother, who's only 7 coming up to 8. Primarily it'll be something he can play his Cartoon Network web games on, Lego factory designer and school work, but also some gaming. No need for Crysis 2 @ 60fps @1080 or anything, but needs to be good enough for new games over the next few years. Getting him F1 Race Stars, for example.

    In terms of budget, looking at around 350 for the tower. Fast enough to last him, and cheap enough so that after 3 years my Mum can choose to just write off the cost or maybe upgrade. In that respect, upgradeability is also something to consider.

    Anyways, onto the bits:

    Processor
    Intel i3 3220 Ivy Bridge - 91

    Motherboard
    Asus P8H61-MX R2.0 socket 1155 (with built in audio) - 38

    RAM
    8GB Crucial DDR3 1600 (1.5v for i3) - 27

    Graphics
    Sapphire AMD HD7750 1GB DDR5 - 80

    HDD
    Seagate 3.5" 500GB - 42

    Optical drive
    Samsung DVD writer - 13

    Case
    Coolmaster 330 with 500w PSU and fan - 57

    So unless there's something I've forgotten, that's the lot. 348.

    Couple of questions though. It's been some time since I've built a rig, will I be needing any additional internal cables? Fans?

    Any compatibility issues I may have overlooked? Also, is the case and PSU a bit overkill for the guts? I checked, and that bundle was about as good a price as you could build yourself with lesser components.

    Thanks in advance.
  • Deleted user 14 November 2012 11:22:03
    @altitude2k

    You'll probably be fine with what you have selected, but just in case; recently I bought some budget parts for a non-budget system and missed a few things I didn't expect to be wrong.

    First out the blocks was the OCZ 600watt cable managed PSU, it doesn't have mobo leads long enough to route via the underside of the case, and just long enough to get to the sockets around the very large CPU heatsink/fan arrangement. The Antec 302 case shockingly doesn't have an internal speaker/header by design, so finding out how a system is POSTing is pin the tail on the donkey.

    The other thing you might want to verify is that you are buying a retail CPU. Not an OEM without heat sink/fan.
  • andytheadequate 14 Nov 2012 11:38:28 8,133 posts
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    8 gig ram is a bit overkill, but its so cheap it won't make much of a difference.

    A few obvious things you may need if you don't already have them are an operating system, a monitor and kb&m
  • altitude2k 14 Nov 2012 12:03:26 4,129 posts
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    I've also been advised to look at an A10-5800 APU as an alternative to the i3. Won't be as fast for games, but don't need a discrete GPU initially, and can add one in later to boost the performance.

    Sounds like a good option seeing as the processor is the same price and it saves about 80...
  • RobTheBuilder 14 Nov 2012 12:19:27 6,521 posts
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    @altitude2k I played the demo of F1 Race Stars on a much lower spec and it ran very smoothly.

    (Athlon X3 3.2ghz, ATI 5670, 4gb RAM)
  • Salaman 14 Nov 2012 12:28:11 18,959 posts
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    altitude2k wrote:
    Sounds like a good option seeing as the processor is the same price and it saves about 80...
    Although I will probably add a 60 GPU at some point. I just bought a system with the A10 5800k and I've been playing Borderlands2 on it just fine. You can't go mental on the graphics settings but it's set to my 21" LCD display's native resolution with some settings on medium/some on high I think. I didn't spend a whole lot of time in the video options tbh.
  • altitude2k 14 Nov 2012 13:38:12 4,129 posts
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    Yeah it seems plenty capable for medium settings. For the same spec for an i3 system I would have to get a discrete GPU and just bin it when it comes to an upgrade. Money down the drain.

    This is 80 cheaper and still gives me the option to get something else later. Whether that's a 6000 card in Crossfire, or something straight up meatier.
  • RobTheBuilder 14 Nov 2012 14:35:36 6,521 posts
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    @altitude2k I'm not sure on Intel motherboards, but as the new AMD's are just out, I'd imagine they have a decent life in terms of upgrade potential, plus the crossfire support gives you more options.
  • altitude2k 14 Nov 2012 15:55:52 4,129 posts
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    Thanks for the advice, chaps.
  • bodhi85uk 14 Nov 2012 18:11:28 179 posts
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    @altitude2k

    Ive got a very similar system (see a couple posts above yours). I wouldn't bother with 8gb, its not strictly needed unless your doing video editing, and if you are you should be getting a quad core... but probably not an AMD one as they use a lot more power than the Ivy Bridge chips and don't perform as well in single-threaded apps. I'm pretty sure TomsHardware don't recommend a single AMD chip at any price point anymore, even the Celeron's out perform a sizeable selection of their chips. Which is a shame really as the competition would be a good thing.

    Anyway, you are better off taking the money for the extra RAM, and getting a 7770, significantly quicker and you will absolutely notice it versus the 7750.
  • superdelphinus 14 Nov 2012 20:04:06 8,051 posts
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    what does this mean?

    "after 3 years my Mum can choose to just write off the cost "
  • MMMarmite 14 Nov 2012 23:04:16 1,020 posts
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    @superdelphinus I'm thinking he means that after 3 years they can ditch it knowing they got their monies worth from it and buy a new one or upgrade it.

    In terms of the AMD vs Intel, Intel are supposedly changing the socket for the next cycle of chips (mid 2013) so if you went that route upgrading to a newer processor would most likely cost more, however you could still possibly upgrade to an ivy-bridge i5/i7 if the i3 gets a bit slow.
  • altitude2k 15 Nov 2012 07:41:19 4,129 posts
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    superdelphinus wrote:
    what does this mean?

    "after 3 years my Mum can choose to just write off the cost "
    Like MMMarmite says, after a few years she can be comfortable with just starting again OR upgrading. It's not enough money to be too concerned about after getting that much use out of it.

    Decided to go for the AMD A10-5800 in the end. In my mind, considering his age, it'll serve him plenty and cost a good deal less. If it gets slow, that 80 can be used to buy a good discrete GPU later on, with no additional cash spent.
  • Tomo 23 Nov 2012 17:06:19 13,895 posts
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    Chaps,

    I am thinking of upgrading my PC. I haven't done so since May 2010. I haven't been paying attention to the hardware market since I last upgraded, so don't really know what to do. Processor power is no longer as simple as Pentium II versus Pentium IV so I'm not sure if mine still cuts it. I imagine my GPU is fairly old now (although it does play most stuff reasonably)

    Anyway, my current set up:
    - AMD Athlon II X4 630 Socket AM3 2.8GHz
    - AMD 5770 1GB GPU
    - ASRock M3A770DE 770 Socket AM3 motherboard
    - 4GB RAM

    Suggestions? Can I get away with just sticking a new graphics card in? Or do I need to go the whole hog?

    Budget... 150-200 if GPU only. 400 tops if everything.
  • RobTheBuilder 23 Nov 2012 17:18:15 6,521 posts
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    @Tomo That processor isn't amazing, but I think combined with a decent graphics card it should run most things alright for now.

    I'd suggest getting a new card, as 400 on a machine won't go much faster, and you can always move the card across to a new unit later.

    A 7850 (2gb is better for a tiny bit more) is about 140 and is three steps up in the Toms Hardware tables from your 5770, your AM3 motherboard should handle a Phenom x4/x6 if you wanted to do that too.

    Only thing to check is your power supply capacity, although if you have a 5770 it's probably enough to handle a 7850.
  • RobTheBuilder 23 Nov 2012 17:20:17 6,521 posts
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    Actually Rodpad's option is a good one too.
  • Tomo 23 Nov 2012 17:38:24 13,895 posts
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    Hehe. You'll probably find my last set up upgrade questions in this thread. Point noted.
  • Deleted user 23 November 2012 17:43:59
    @Tomo

    My advice, do everything rodpad suggests :)
  • RobTheBuilder 23 Nov 2012 17:49:56 6,521 posts
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    vizzini wrote:
    @Tomo

    My advice, do everything rodpad suggests :)
    Zing.
  • Deleted user 23 November 2012 17:53:39
    RobTheBuilder wrote:
    vizzini wrote:
    @Tomo

    My advice, do everything rodpad suggests :)
    Zing.
    No, I was being genuine, no-one probably knows budget setups around here better than rodpad. Or Mr Celeron, as I know him.
  • Maturin 23 Nov 2012 18:14:36 2,961 posts
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    rodpad wrote:
    Then buy a GTX 660 Ti with the money left over.
    If you do, get the MSI Power Edition 2GB version. Only 6 percent slower than a GTX670 and can be easily overclocked to match 670 performance.

    Not that you'll need to immediately. My card runs everything I've tried at 1080p 60fps.

    Edited by Maturin at 18:15:20 23-11-2012
  • FutileResistor 24 Nov 2012 10:11:00 1,228 posts
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    rodpad wrote:
    Tomo

    http://www.freshtechsolutions.co.uk/great-value-bundles/intel-core-i5-2500k-3-3ghz-8gb-ddr3-1333mhz-gigabyte-h61m-motherboard-bundle.html

    Then buy a GTX 660 Ti with the money left over.

    Should be very close to 400.
    I'm constantly baffled by the seeming incompetence of professional PC makers/retailers.

    Here we go again.

    Why would you put together a bundle of an unlocked and overclockable CPU with a budget motherboard that doesn't support overclocking?

    If you decide to go down this route, just do it yourself.

    You can get the i5-2500K for 162, a Z77 motherboard for 70 and 8GB of Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600MHz Ram for 26. Which is 258 or 20 more but you would actually be able to overclock the 2500K.

    Edited by FutileResistor at 10:14:35 24-11-2012
  • FutileResistor 24 Nov 2012 11:18:10 1,228 posts
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    Reading some of the recommendations for Nvidia cards on this page, I have to disagree.

    Nvidia's 6XX series of cards are insanely overpriced. It's really difficult to recommend Nvidia's cards at the current price differential vs AMD. At every price point AMD is better value.

    The 660Ti is typically going for around 230. The Radeon 7950 is better than the 660Ti and is typically around 215 compared to 230.

    The real story in GPUs at the moment is the Radeon 7850. A Radeon 7850, even the 1GB versions (you don't really need the 2GB if gaming at 1080p or below) can be easily overclocked to stock 660Ti levels and are available for about 120+ for 1GB or 160+ for the 2GB versions. So you can get the performance of a stock 660ti for 110 less.

    This XFX 1GB Radeon 7850 is 137 and comes with free copies of Deus EX, AVP, DiRT Showdown, Nexiuz, Far Cry 3. Which, if you want those games (Far Cry 3 just got a 10/10 eurogamer review), may make it the best value card I've ever seen.

    I'm tempted and I don't even need a new card.

    Edited by FutileResistor at 11:20:12 24-11-2012
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