TechSpot

Build advice: Gaming sub-$1000

By matchu
May 4, 2010
  1. Hello! A friend and I were casually talking about him getting a new PC that'd be good for some of the up-and-coming games that we like to play (SC2 and D3, whenever that is). Anyway, he just threw it out that there he wouldn't mind putting one together for less than 1k and I thought... why not?

    Purpose: Gaming @ high quality to max settings for majority of up-and-coming games
    Budget: 1000
    Location: Canada, willing to buy online
    Old parts: mouse + keyboard, monitor, speakers
    OS: don't have
    Cooling: preferably nothing beyond what comes stock

    So... what I came up with on the fly and I'd like your advice on is this...

    cooler master scout @ $100
    Corsair TX750 750W PSU @ $95
    Phenom II x2 555 @ $125 (why's there no BE on NCIX?)
    OCZ 1333MHz 9-9-9-20 2x2GB Memory @ $110
    Radeon 4870 @ $195 (not necessarily at ncix for that price)
    Gigabyte MA770T UD3P Mobo
    Western Digital 1TB Black @ $96
    Windows 7 OEM @ $118
    Any DVD ROM @ $30

    Comes to under 1000.

    Some thoughts to begin with... I would have liked to throw in a quad core processor (or core i CPU) as well as a 5000 series GPU . but the budget told me to stick with a dual core AMD and a cheaper graphics solution. not sure if that's realy the right sacrifice... but that's what i did.

    PSU... not sure how much wattage i need. just pulled 750 out of the air.

    Case... not sure what's really necessary.. but the Scout looks pretty cool =\

    I'd really appreciate some your input on this one. Thanks =]
     
  2. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,906   +90

    Hi matchu
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103652 99.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029 45.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128398 119.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231277 109.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005 89.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150481&cm_re=hd_5830-_-14-150-481-_-Product 230.300
    Western Digital 1TB Black @ $96
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129079 100.00
    Windows 7 OEM @ $118
    Any DVD ROM @ $30

    This setup gets you a MB that has the 750 Southbridge that you need to unlock the disabled cores. The x3 720 can be had for around the same price, is a black edition, will give you a full Ghz OC, and has three cores even if the 4th core will not unlock, or is a dud. (important because more and more games are using 2+ cores). The 5830 is close to the 4870 in performance, but you get DX 11 for future considerations. The cpu is a BE for easier and more flexible OC'ing. I threw in there an after market cooler for OC'ing. The MB has a second PCIE slot for VGA upgrade if the mood strikes you :) Newegg CA would not connect when i tried it a few mins ago, so I will let you find them if you like it.
     
  3. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    Hi red! Did you mean the HD 4890? I thought the HD 5830 was comparable to the 4890 while the 5770 was close to the 4870.

    For the case I would suggest the Cooler Master CM 690 instead of the Antec 600. It comes in much cheaper, about $90 including shipping charges, compared to $120 for the latter.

    All in all, great choices.
     
  4. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,906   +90

  5. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    Hey! Thanks everyone, for the replies

    When i put down the 4870, I was intending to do a 4870 X2, which i read was comparable to the 5850. But it doens't look like I can find it on NCIX or Newegg. So... scratch that.

    I looked up Red's build on newegg.ca. It looks really good! One problem is the total comes to almost 1100 in Canadian $ before s/h and tax (which is a whopping 13% ugh). At the very least, I'd like to bring it down to $1000 before all that stuff. =(

    The bigger problem is that my friend isn't exactly an enthusiast when it comes to computer stuff. Not sure if I want to go ahead and start unlocking/overclocking stuff with him. Not yet anyway.... neither of us are totally comfortable with that yet. Maybe if it were my own stuff, I would do it.

    if multiple cores is beneficial, what about the Phenom II x4 925?

    An alternative GPU was to use a 5770, since it seems to perform fairly well on a lot of games at 1920x1080. With a dual pcie mobo, there leaves the option to do cross-fire later on as well. And it has dx11 features. But from various sites, it looks like the 5770 scores consistently in the 40~50 fps on a lot of games. So perhaps 5770 is a viable option?
     
  6. Matthew

    Matthew TechSpot Staff Posts: 6,078   +84 Staff Member

  7. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,906   +90

    I was afraid that it would be a little pricier in Canada. The 5770 and the x4 925 are both good choices for that build. The 5770 will get you highest detail on most games at 1920 x 1080, you will have to lower the detail a bit on crysis,metro 2033 and the like, however you have another PCIE slot at your disposal and 5770's crossfire nicely, so perhaps down the road.
     
  8. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

  9. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    hey ritwick! thanks for the reply. I still need to factor in the cost of an OS and the optical drive. I might be able to get away with an old DVD drive, but probably not windows 7.
     
  10. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    You could settle with an HD 5770 for now and CrossFire as soon as you have some more funds. That would be an excellent way forward.

    The Phenom II X4 925 is a pretty good processor. I would still recommend the 955 BE though. However, if you think that it's stretching your budget, go with the 925.
     
  11. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 4,376   +127

    Don't discount the Phenom II X3 720.
     
     
  12. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    Thanks again everyone, for the input. I will suggest to my friend the phenom ii x4 925 + radeon 5570 combo and see what he has to say. This`ll be pretty sweet =D
     
  13. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    Why the Radeon HD 5570??? Doesn't make any sense!!!
     
  14. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    oops typo! meant the 5750
     
  15. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,288   +7

    Get the HD 5770 at least. That should fit your budget.

    I say, HD 5770 + X4 925 if you're on a tight budget.
     
  16. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    good call. and i wrote down 5770 in an earlier post too. i must've had a major brain freeze in that last post...
     
  17. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    Sooo... sorry for reviving an old post, but my friend has been procrastinating.

    There's been some price cuts/shuffling in the hardware area, so i thought why not redo his build to reflect some more recent happenings

    Case: Coolermaster CM 690 [85]
    PSU: Corsair CMPSU650 [110]
    Mobo: Asus M4A77TD [90]
    CPU: Phenom ii x4 955 [160]
    RAM: OCZ 2x2GB 1333 [76]
    GPU: EVGA GTX460 1GB [230]
    HDD: WD 1TB Black [95]
    ODD: .......................... [20]

    870 + s/h/tax = 1000

    There are also random mail in rebates here and there that i havent' factored in. what do you guys think? better, or worse than before?
     
  18. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 4,376   +127

    Looks good, but you can use a corsair 550w instead.
     
  19. Alster37

    Alster37 TS Maniac Posts: 327

    Good build although I would get a scout case as I haven't been disappointed mine. but it cant fit a standard 5870.
     
  20. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 4,376   +127

    Thats disappointing; Coolermaster CM 690 is a good case, and low cost.
     
  21. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,286   +25

    The Seasonic S12II 620W is a cheaper and higher-efficiency PSU that will also be sufficient for that system (it only has about 50W less power on the +12V rail than the Corsair).
     
  22. LinkedKube

    LinkedKube TechSpot Project Baby Posts: 4,265   +42

    I'd take a seasonic with 100 less watts than any other psu because of build quality.
     
  23. matchu

    matchu TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 111

    thanks for the feedback, everyone =]
     
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