$1k gaming rig, first time builder

By Armyguyclaude ยท 40 replies
Mar 17, 2013
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  1. Hey all, I'm looking for advice and possibly tips and answers on whether or not my current build will work. I've done some scouting through Newegg, and looking at advice tips through the net on how to build a gaming rig and looking at pricings and what to look for, but I want to make sure it'll work (most of all), and whether or not this is a good buy for 1k spending limit. It's currently priced at around 980$, but with rebates and such (I don't know if wishlist accounts for rebates and things like that) it could be around 860 altogether.

    After reading the how to post new building threads I've decided to add in this info:
    I have no bought any items yet. I live in Georgia US. I'm using this computer mainly for gaming. I only have a laptop at the moment and most likely won't be using any parts from it for my new computer. I'm looking to keep this rig under 1,000 dollars and do not have a monitor, keyboard, mouse, or operating system yet. But I'm currently looking operating systems at the moment and monitors. I doubt a keyboard and mouse will be that bad for cheapo's until I get more money. And I don't know if I will need any after market cooling as I'm pretty noob/new to a lot of this stuff :p.


    I've been told I could scrap my optical drive for a higher priced Graphics card, but I heard the 7850 was a decent buy for it's price. I'll see what you guys have to say, but I would like to be able to watch dvd's and such, and install some of the CD'd PC games I already currently own.


    My Wishlist!:
    Graphics Card:
    Radeon 7850 2G

    Intel i5-3570 ivy bridge 3.4gz (3.8 gz turbo boosted)

    ASRock Z77

    Corsair 90GB SATA III SSD

    Western Digital 500 GB

    Power Supply:
    Corsair TX series

    Computer Case:
    Rosewell Challenger-U3

    G.SKILL Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1866 (PC3 14900)

    Optical Drive:
    LG Black Blu-Ray


    I would have posted my actual wishlist, but I have no idea how to do it through Newegg :p
  2. MrBlkfx1

    MrBlkfx1 TS Evangelist Posts: 863   +204

    Scrapping the optical drive for a better GPU is an option. However, what you already have looks solid. I don't see a Monitor,Keyboard/Mouse or OS included in this. Are they on a separate budget?

    If you were to scrap the Optical drive, you could move up to something like this.
  3. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I didn't include them in the budget (monitor, os, keyboard/mouse) but I found a windows 7 64-bit os for 99.99 on newegg, but the monitor's all look pricy. Don't even know where to begin with finding a decent monitor for a cheapish price :p. I figure'd I could get away with cheapo keyboard/mouse for awhile, until I felt like I needed to upgrade or got more money. Since I'm not a pro gamer atm anyways.

    But I think I will probably stick with the optical drive since I still like watching movies etc, and stuff on dvd's/cd's.

    The biggest concern I had is would all this stuff fit together well inside the case (if anyone can speculate) and is it all compatible? I tried my best to look into compatibility issue/threads on the net before buying, but since I'm a novice at all of this, I still have no idea. :p
  4. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +172

    If you don't overclock you can save a lot of money by going for a H77 motherboard instead, you won't be needing the features of the more expensive Z77 chipset. However for future proofing reasons I would recommend you get the i5 3570K (only $5 more than the non-K version) and the ASRock Z77 Extreme4 (you don't need an Extreme6). Overclocking is easy on the 3570K and will ensure your CPU/mobo lasts for a good 4-5 years.

    The parts you've picked are all compatible and will fit in the case so don't worry about that.
  5. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Question on overclocking... I keep reading about an after market cooling etc,... will I need this if I overclock and what does it do and how easy is it to do?

    Thanks btw to both of you for your input xD
  6. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Also quick question...

    Do I need to buy a sound card or anything or speakers for this?
  7. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +172

    You'll need an aftermarket cooler, something like this Cooler Master 212+ will do the job for a modest (4.0-4.5Ghz) overclock. Even at stock speed the 3570K will easily be enough for modern games but overclocking it will make it last a bit longer before you need to upgrade again.

    Up to you really, depends how much you like your music and sound quality. Audio setups range from tens to thousands of $$$. Unless you're getting expensive speakers the mobo onboard sound will be fine.
  8. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    1) On-board sound is plenty good, unless you have some secret $1000 sound system :eek:.
    2) As for aftermarket cooling, get the Hyper 212 Evo, a great cooling solution for 35 bucks, a great recent guide by AnandTech will help you out: http://www.anandtech.com/show/6830/...ers-from-noctua-silverstone-and-cooler-master
    3) Are you gonna be watching movies? I would say go for a $21 ASUS DVD drive (or whatever brand) and put the savings toward a better GPU like Blkfx1 said.
    4) Personally, I would go for an ASUS motherboard: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131837 From my past experience, they are more consistant than ASROCK ones, but people say they have improved.
    5) As for the SSD, 90GB is cutting it close, you may want to load games you play most on it along with the OS, that will leave very little free space. Go for this 120GB 840 series instead, it is a newer architecture and even costs a buck less. It uses Samsungs custom NAND chip instead of the less consistant Sandforce the Corsair uses: http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Serie..._4?ie=UTF8&qid=1363566119&sr=8-4&keywords=ssd
    6) As for the PSU, it is $20 less on Amazon (it may be a bit different than your current one): http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Enthu...8&qid=1363566316&sr=1-1&keywords=corsair+650w
    If you want to futureproof, get this 750W gold PSU, it is more efficient and is modular, and if you want to crossfire another GPU in a year or 2 then you can with the increase in power the $120 PSU will provide: http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Profe...8&qid=1363566316&sr=1-9&keywords=corsair+650w
    7) As for the case, I would say go with the Corsair 200R, it provides great airflow, cable management, and is probably hands down the best case for $50 bucks: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811139018&Tpk=200r corsair&IsVirtualParent=1
    8) Finally, for the GPU, go with a 7870, after rebate, it will be the same as a 7850: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150605

    Note: Some of these prices are after mail and rebates.
  9. B00kWyrm

    B00kWyrm TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,436   +37

    Hi Armyguyclaude

    I have not reviewed the advice of others yet.
    I am sure others will comment on HCL related issues, if any.

    My comments are directed mostly to the "building" process.
    I have been offering essentially this same advice on several proposed builds lately.

    First... Re: Rosewill - you may want to read the cons, and rethink this case choice.

    Second... Also regarding the case... You may prefer a top mount psu for at least two reasons...
    a) Cable managment. It likely will be a stretch to make the connection from the psu to the cpu power connector on the motherboard; for cable management, if nothing else, you may find you want an extender. This will vary a little from PSU to PSU... just a heads up about the possibility.

    b) Look at how close the bottom expansion "slot" is to the psu. This means that you will be quite crowded at that end of the board. At the very least, you may lose the option of using your "bottom" slot, maybe even two slots. Also, you will have a lot of wires connecting to this lower end of the board. This coupled with crowding already noted could make "iffy" the airflow to your second graphics card (if you ever intend to sli).

    Just noticed a Corsair mid-tower suggested by JC713.
    I would say this is better, in several respects, but (depending on the cables provided with the psu)
    may still have the issue of needing an extender to connect the psu to the cpu connector on the mb.

    Third... Check prices at other locations.
    I found that Microcenter offered some great mb/psu combo pricing.

    I like the Corsair psus (Seasonic is another good choice).
    I splurged and went with the AX (Gold) series... most will say this is not strictly necessary.

    I have built both an AMD rig and an Intel rig in the last 6 mos.
    I think you will be happy with the the Intel choice.
    Performance for the price is a slightly better deal in my book.
  10. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,922   +630

    - The 8GB RAM should be more like $55.

    - Get a 1TB HDD. The 90GB SSD is plenty if you dont install games on it.

    - Someone above suggested a Samsung 840 SSD - there's a huge difference between an 840 and 840 Pro, be careful.

    - Standard 23-24inch 1920x1080 monitor can be had for $150.

    - Standard MS Mouse/keyboard $30 combo is decent for first-timers.

    - Get a cheap DVD drive instead of bluray drive. You should have this in your home theatre, not on PC.

    - Keep in mind, you'll have to build this whole thing yourself.
  11. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks guys. I've already made a bunch of adjustments.

    First off, I've found a decent monitor I think for only 99.99 on newegg.
    I don't know if it is actually any good, since I only read reviews, but the reviews seemed decent and it had a DVI port so I know it'll connect to my graphics card.

    Secondly, about the case, I upgraded and somehow still stayed in the same price range as before and got this:
    Kinda excited about it as well. Other than not being made of metal it seems like everyone is excited and happy about this. I think it will also be big enough / allowing for cooling and cable management.

    Third, Bluray, I don't have a tv or rarely watch tv other than movies. Even in a household of 3 guys none of do. We basically watch movies. Would it still be smart to get a whole tv and bluray play just to play dvd's or get a bluray player for my computer?

    Lastly, as for SSD drives, whats the difference between the samsung non pro and the 90gb pro version from corsair I had earlier? I don't know what I'm doing here. I don't know if I want a shouting match, but I'd like do's and don'ts with each of them. All I know is the 120gb is bigger than the 90gb and loading faster is always nice.

    Also: Memory Sticks. I know that it's usually around 50-55$.... but the 14900 on the side of the memory stick means it can be Overclocked at a higher rate doesn't it? (not that I know how to overclock or anything, it would just be nice to know I could if I ever needed or wanted to.)

    Also Also:
    Picked up Windows 64-bit from newegg for 99.99
    Also picked up Windows 7 OS from Newegg for 99.99
    64 bit

    Also Also Also:
    Had to pick up a different graphics card from newegg since the one I wanted was out of stock. Tried looking it up on different sites and was around 30-50$ more expensive so I picked this one up instead. Hope it's still good.

  12. ---agissi---

    ---agissi--- TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,978   +15

    That is an IPS panel so I applaud you however 20 inches is pretty small, imo.

    TS shows what CPU speed does to framerates in their benchies; piss squat all most the time. Not much when it does do something.

    So since its a gaming rig drop back from a K chip, get a mobo thats more in line with $80 which should be plenty doable /w the H chipset, then bump up the gfx card your buying. However if your gaming on that 20" the resolution is so small (1600x900, thats a laptop resolution) you wont even need a good gfx card.

    Get a nice monitor like this and you'll be thanking yourself! I have a 24" Asus IPS and it is incredible!

    Theres a 24" for $50 more, too.
  13. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    All of what you just said made no sense to me lol. No offense, but I'm really stupid when it comes to computer hardware. But other than that, the monitor you showed me is really expensive and I definitely don't want to pay that much for a monitor even if it's top of the line :p. Sorry. Maybe someday down the road, but right now with everything I got and reduced RAM which I haven't posted yet and cheaper deals from amazon.com I'm sitting at aroun 1260$. That's for everything.

    Since I usually play on a laptop for all my games a 20 inch screen isn't gonna be that bad for me. I don't mind it. Especially if it's halfway decent.
  14. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    Yes, I know the 840 vs 840 Pro, I personally think for Armyguyclaude, who isnt technically inclined (not trying offend you, but this will help my argument :eek: ), he wont notice load speed differences. He is better off with capacity vs speed. I can agree with you in the HDD category if he doesnt mind. A WD Caviar Black 1TB goes for $89, so it is a good buy.

    Edit - get this ram ($52.99): http://www.amazon.com/Corsair-Venge...d=1363633223&sr=8-4&keywords=8gb+1600mhz+ddr3
  15. B00kWyrm

    B00kWyrm TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,436   +37

    Erm... My wife isn't technically inclined,
    but when I swapped out her hdd for an ssd, she was like "WOW!"
    She sure noticed!
    Of course... most of this performance boost will be noticed at boot, rather than other times.
    Which may well be what JC713 was intending.
  16. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    Well, I meant more like 840 vs 840 Pro
  17. B00kWyrm

    B00kWyrm TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,436   +37

    I thought you were arguing for a larger HDD, for storage, and never mind the ssd.
    I misunderstood.
  18. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    No problem buddy.
  19. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,922   +630

    Re: 840 vs 840 Pro - the difference lies in the memory chips used. The non-pro has shitty chips which last a hell of a lot shorter than normal, and have pretty poor (sequential?Or random?) read times.

    I personally gave my parents a non-pro model, because I think it'll be OK. I also think OP will be fine with it (as said, not technically inclined), however OP must know that he musn't load/reload all his games on there 24x7. It'll still last at least 4-5 years with extreme use, but.. better safe than sorry.

    CPU: Your wise choices are: i5 quad-core with H77 mobo, or an i5 3570K with Z77 mobo. Weigh up the prices - the more expensive one will let you overclock easily later on. Why overclock? Well, if you listen, here's what your build will look like:

    - Build it now with 7850, i5, 20 inch monitor.
    - Later, upgrade to a 24 inch+ monitor
    - GPU gets upgraded to latest gen (9000? lol).
    - CPU gets overclocked to keep up, lasts another 1-2 years before requiring upgrade.

    Bluray: I dunno. Watching bluray at a desk with a monitor is OK if you have surround sound PC speakers. If you want to add people, then this doesn't work IMO. However, if the PC desk is close to the lounge TV, you could run an HDMI cable to it.

    Bottom line: I still think investing in a bluray home cinema system + TV is the best option.
  20. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

    The 840 has the same NAND chip as the 840 Pro, just a different controller.

    Edit: I cant find the exact video I want, but I think this could be it, I dont have time to watch it though.
  21. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I don't know what you all mean, but I'm assuming that it's ok to go with the 120 gb ssd memory storage device that was mentioned above. :p

    Didn't realize my comp thread was gonna start a storage war ;)
  22. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

  23. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 2,922   +630

  24. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,515   +974

  25. Armyguyclaude

    Armyguyclaude TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I also upgraded to the 128gb Pro SSD hard drive, since it seems it's not that much more money and is apparently a little better.

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