First time budget build, need advice

By jplex · 15 replies
Jun 22, 2010
  1. Ok so this is going to be the first PC that I have built, Im trying to build a budget gaming PC and after reading loads of articles i've come up with a list of hardware but I need some advice on PSU , Case and heatsink / cooling

    So my budget is about £500 and am buying form or
    Here is the list of components soo far

    Processor = AMD Phenom II X2 Black edition @ 3.2GHz
    Mobo = Asus M4A79XTD Evo AMD 790X
    GPU = MSI HD 5750 1GB GDDR5 (Going to Crossfire in future when more Gfx needed)
    HDD = Standard 500GB Sata hard drive
    CD/DVD = Standard 24x CD/DVD RW sata connector

    So as for RAM, I know that I want DDR3 and probably 1333 Mhz as it is in my budget range, what I dont understand is whether I want "unbuffered" ram or "1.5v" ? What does this mean?

    As for PSU, I have looked and looked and am still lost in the woods. Any recommendations for a Good value PSU that will power this system

    CPU heat sink - Is it necessary to Buy a custom heat sink or will the stock heat sink do ?

    Finally I am in need of a cheap gaming case that will keep my system cool but I don't want to spend much on it! Any Recommendations?

    Thanks in advance
  2. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    How much are your abobve components adding up to? Based on that we could recommend the remaining stuff.
  3. jplex

    jplex TS Rookie Topic Starter

    £350 so far aiming to spend £500 at most!
    Thanks for quick reply!
  4. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

  5. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    Okay, Rit beat me by seconds.

    What X2 are you considering?

    If you are not overclocking there is no need to purchase a heat sink

    The 1.5v is the voltage required for the RAM. This is set by the motherboard. There are times though when the motherboard does not set it correctly and so you need to go into the BIOS to change it manually. Perhaps this is too much information at this time, so we'll cross that proverbial stream if we even need to.

    Look to the CoolerMaster mid-towers. Great prices and some really well made cases.

    IMO I would up your video card to at least a 5770.

    @ Rit - School over friend? Hope you did well. A good Corsair should do him fine. What do you think?
    Well I do fully agree with the Corsair.
  6. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    @ Route - Yes. College over. :) I think the OP is considering the Phenom II X2 550 BE (Callisto) CPU. The 550 BE can achieve pretty decent overclocks on the stock HSF.
  7. jplex

    jplex TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for all the advice.
    As for the ram the only thing that confused me was the fact that one of the sets had the description "Corsair 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1333MHz Memory Kit Unbuffered" the other at the end just said "Memory Kit 1.5v"

    The processor is the Phenom II X2 555 not the 550, the 555 has a clock speed of 3.2 Ghz while the 550 is at 3.1. Also I have read that some 555's can be unlocked to quad core and essentially they are the Phenom II X4 with 2 cores locked. but if the unlocking doesnt work it wont bother me that much.

    Also just been doing some browsing and came across this. what do you think ? ... cant post hyperlink yet :(
  8. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Thats fine...

    The case comes with a powersupply, and not a good one so, I would say no. If you can find the case individually...
  9. jplex

    jplex TS Rookie Topic Starter

    What do I need to look for in a "good" Psu ? Also wont I need more than 400W if I decide to Crossfire ?
  10. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    whatever you land on for choices make sure the MB has the 750 or better southbridge, and if you want to unlock cores, make sure you get a black edition CPU. and yes you will need a 550w for crossfiring a pair of 5750's.
    as far as what to look for in a PSU, a quality brand like Corsair, and the total amperage on the 12v rails. The Corsair 550w has 41A on a single 12v rail. That will serve your proposed rig and give you headroom for OC'ing and crossfiring if you choose.
  11. jplex

    jplex TS Rookie Topic Starter

    just checked and the mobo that i posted above the ( Asus M4A79XTD Evo AMD 790X) has the 750 southbridge! so i think that'll be fine, its also got plenty of room for 2 GPU's :D!
  12. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    For Crossfire you'll need to pick something like the Corsair 550VX at least. However, that will exceed your budget by quite a bit.

    What's the price difference between the X2 550 and 555. If it's anything significant then go with the cheaper alternative. The cores on the 550 can be unlocked too.
  13. jplex

    jplex TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Price difference is about £7 so I think ill go with the X2 555! but thanks decided to go for this PSU I think ""
  14. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Never heard of that brand. If it's not a reliable one then it will cause problems in CF. It has 35 Amps combining the dual 12V rails compared to 41 on a single rail in the Corsair 550VX.
  15. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

  16. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    Yes, that is an excellent choice.
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