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First build, cheap gaming for my son

By JustXeno · 8 replies
Nov 4, 2013
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  1. Hi guys, have been reading a few of the help me find the best build threads and as my son wants a pc that will play bf4 at moderate settings for xmas I've decided to have a go at building one. My budget is 400 pounds sterling.

    This is what I've priced up so far.

    £58.32 x 1 - "Primo 520a" AMD A55 DDR3 Ready Barebones (Socket FM2)
    This includes a case a 500 watt power supply and an asrock fm2 m/b.

    £56.66 x 1 - Kingston 120GB SSDNow V300 Drive SATA 6Gb/s
    £7.49 x 1 - Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound

    £49.99 x 1 - AMD Athlon X4 750K Black Edition 3.40GHz

    £49.99 x 1 - GeIL Black Dragon 4GB (2x4GB) DDR3

    £7.49 x 1 - Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound

    £161.99 x1 - His HD7950 3072mb graphics card.

    All of the above have been sourced from overclockers.co.uk

    baring in my mind I've never built a machine before I suppose what I want to know is
    will the components I've picked compliment each other and could you guys point me in the right direction
    if I've missed anything crucial out. Or for that matter if you could put together a better build for the
    same sort of money. I have been advised to go for the best graphics card I can afford so this is the reason
    the build looks so graphics heavy.

    Anyway thanks in advance guys, just from looking at some of the other threads on this site I can tell there's
    a lot of you who really know what you are doing.
  2. Spykezxp

    Spykezxp TS Addict Posts: 296   +73

    Some suggestions:
    If you are not planning on overclocking the CPU, then you can drop off the Arctic Shield 5 Thermal Compound (which you have listed twice by the way). Thermal compound comes with most CPU's, and it works just fine as long as you are not overclocking too much.
    You will need to up the RAM to 8GB (4GB is just meeting the minimum requirements on most newer games). Having 8GB of ram will give you that "Buffer" zone to be able to play all the games for at least a couple years.
    You only put in a 120GB SSD drive. You will have that filled with the Operating System and maybe a couple games and not have enough room for anything else. I would suggest for now, dumping the SSD drive and getting at least a 500GB to 1TB 7200rpm hard drive.
    Should also get a DVD/Bluray drive.
    You will also have to factor in the cost of an Operating System.

    Those are my few suggestions, I know other people will be adding in theirs too. Hope this helps you out some.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  3. JustXeno

    JustXeno TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hi ty for your reply spy.

    I suppose I should've said, I already have a 750gb that a friend gave me from an old old pc and the same goes for the dvd drive. The ram price is for 8gb I guess its not clear the way I posted it.

    So all things considered in you opinion, will the machine I've posted be upto to playing all the latest games ? Because if its not I can see me and an angry teenager butting heads on xmas day lol.

    BTW to start with it will be being used on a sony 32 inch 720p tv. This will be getting upgraded at a later date to a decent higher resolution monitor which is why I've gone for a gpu that seems a bit overkill for gaming at 720p.

    One other question, will these parts come with all the cables needed or is this something I would have to buy seperately
  4. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,151   +588

    Here's my suggestion, your build will do pretty fine for a gamer rig, however I don't think the A55 board with the 750k will complement the HD 7950 your putting in with it. Plus like Spykezxp said, an SSD when pricing out a system becomes a significant up charge for something that just speeds up load times and boot speed. I would make the following changes if it was me personally:
    R9 270X Sapphire 2gb with Boost 142

    CIT Vantage Case and 750Watt PSU Combo £65

    Gigabyte 970 AM3+ Combo £50

    Keep the same ram you have for £49.99

    FX 6300 PileDriver 3.5ghz-4.1ghz £84.40

    Current total would be 399 respectively and that's including your HDD you have given. The advantage of this build is that the CPU power will be upped to a higher level giving more headroom to the GPU, now BF4 is not totally CPU intensive and its more GPU intensive than anything, but it will be a nice jump to have that extra CPU power for other games as well. The R9 270X compared to the last Generation HD 7950 is that the 270X is mostly just like a Overclocked HD 7870 and the performance compared to a stock HIS (I don't know which version you have selected, some links to where your finding these parts might help me see where and what prices change) 7950, they are a close matchup.

    Techspot has a review Here of a new AMD GPU and shows a lot of GPU's running BF4 at Ultra at 1920x1200 (Little above 1080p) and you can see where each GPU runs at on Ultra Resolution. At 720p, you can easily get Ultra settings on either card and keep around 45 FPS, dropping to high settings would be an easy 60FPS for sure at 720p.

    Now if you want to stick with FM2 socket because of the price, my suggestion would be to get a 760k over a 750k.

    Also which site are you shopping on, could you post a link because I cant find options like you selected for that price.
  5. JustXeno

    JustXeno TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Hi and ty for reply. the site I've sourced all this from is overclockers.co.uk. This was recommended by a friend because of really good customer service.

    You were right about the prices though as I've gone back and looked again and these are prices before vat so there will be a 20 % vat charge on top of those prices listed.

    The main reason I picked this graphics card is because of the never settle bundle of 3 quite newish games you get with it. From looking at the price of the games included, two of which my son wanted anyway. It kind of works out about 100 pounds for the graphics card if you take the price of the free games away. So a 7950 for that price even if its not one of the best ones seems like a bargain.

    I will try and put all the links in so you can see what I've sourced a bit better. Bare with me as I'm pretty new to forums and stuff. :)
    Primo case m/b and 500 watt power supply £69.98

    Amd 750k http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=CP-330-AM £59.99

    Black dragon 2X4GB http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=MY-114-GL £61.98

    Kingston 120gb ssd http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=HD-051-KS £67.99

    His 7950 http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=GX-049-HS £161.99

    I think this puts he build at just over £420.

    So it looks like you and the other fella might be right the ssd might be coming out of the build and put back in at a later date, probaly his Bday lol.
  6. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,151   +588

    Ok, I see your point and see what your doing, ok that's a good idea and I forget half the time about this site because im US based lol. After playing with a few configurations, I may have hit a sweet point in terms of price to performance while keeping that GPU in and keeping an open mind for expandability later on.

    HIS 7950 162
    FX 6300 90
    Gigabyte 970A-DS3P AM3+ Board 60
    Antec VP550F PSU 50
    Aerocool Strike-X ATX Case 35
    Crucial Ballistix Sport 2x4gb 8gb total 60
    The total comes to around 460 without shipping, that maybe a little high (mostly due to that VAT 20% charge). But the advantages here are a better processor, better motherboard, better ram (The timings on that GEIL ram is atrocious IMHO), a name brand PSU and a cool looking case.

    Since you have an HDD coming, this should do nicely in BF4 and keep you at 720p on ultra at 50-60FPS pretty easily.

    Now if you want to keep the cost down, my suggestion for change on this build, would be to drop the AM3+ and go back to an FM2 board and the 750k, I would say try to stick with an A75 board to keep up the value of the board because A55 just isn't that great a chipset. I recently built a machine with a friend using a 6800k and an A88X Board which is great for gaming so the platform is fine, its just the CPU power is going to be higher on the 6300. I suggest sticking with a name brand PSU at 500+ watts that at least says 80+ certified because when you get into off brands that have 500 or lower, you get into this danger zone of possible burn outs.
    JustXeno and cliffordcooley like this.
  7. JustXeno

    JustXeno TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Plenty of food for though there. I don't really understand about the ram timings and that though, what should I be looking for timing wise in ram then. because as far as the ram goes there are plenty of options for roughly the same price.
    if you could make a suggestion from the overclockers site for me as I want to do the order all in one go.

    ps ty for taking the time try and help an oldtimer like me:)

    edit, I just reread your post and can see you already suggested some. Next time I'll put my glasses on before replying lol.
  8. Jad Chaar

    Jad Chaar Elite Techno Geek Posts: 6,482   +978

  9. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder This guy again... Posts: 2,151   +588

    Well, with timings and cas latency, you just need to know lower is better and the first number is the most important. 9-9-9-24 is the standard with 1600mhz memory for a gamer and just in general, 9 and below is extreme, 10 is a standard for memory above 1600mhz in speed, and 11+ is cheap and poor performance. The crucial set I listed above is a standard 1600 MHz set that will be more than enough for most gamers even on the upper scale.

    ??? 6350 what? FX 6350? The one I listed is a 6300, or am I missing what your saying JC713

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