Build Advice $800ish PC upgrade/build help

Melody Marie

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Dec 15, 2013
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Hi! I'm giving my old gaming PC to my boyfriend as I've been given a newer one by my brother. While my old PC was fine for my needs, it's probably going to require some upgrades to have the sort of performance he wants as it is going on 8 years old now. I think the only parts we're probably going to be able to use is the PSU, the SSD, HDD, and case, but I'd like some feedback on that. Can we get away with just upgrading to a modern GPU for now or would that be pointless with the CPU I currently have?

Here are the specs for the current machine:
CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4 GHz Quad-Core Processor
MB: ASRock Z77 Extreme4 ATX LGA1155 Motherboard
RAM: unknown and not available to check, but it is DDR3 1600mhz so will likely need to be replaced if we upgrade the motherboard. I believe it is 2x4 gb.
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 2 TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
SSD: Samsung 830 Series 128 GB 2.5" Solid State Drive
GPU:HIS Radeon HD 7870 2 GB Video Card
CASE: NZXT Phantom 410 ATX Mid Tower Case
PSU: OCZ ModXStream Pro 600 W 80+ Certified Semi-modular ATX Power Supply

Currently running Windows 7, so regardless we'll probably have to upgrade to Windows 10

He'd like to be able to run modern games at max settings with minimal lag. He also wants a machine that can last for a couple of years without requiring a major overhaul.

Approximate Purchase Date: within next 3-6 weeks

Budget Range:
Ideally, approximately $800 or under, but we have some wiggle room.

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming

Are you buying a monitor: Yes but not included in budget

Parts to Upgrade: CPU, motherboard, RAM, GPU

Do you need to buy OS: Probably

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: none

Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Parts Preferences: n/a

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No

Your Monitor Resolution:

Additional Comments:
Ideally, looking for something that can run modern games at high settings with minimal lag and will last for several years without requiring major upgrades.

Here is the part list he has tentatively chosen. We're not committed to literally anything on this list and absolutely welcome any suggestions/substitutions because we have NO IDEA WHAT WE'RE DOING. We are slightly leaning towards AMD for the processor for the potential to upgrade without replacing the motherboard in the future.

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 3.6 GHz 6-Core Processor
Mobo: ASRock B550 Phantom Gaming 4 ATX AM4 Motherboard
RAM: Corsair Vengeance LPX 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 CL16
GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER 8 GB Founders Edition Video Card



Thanks in advance for any advice!
 
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Melody Marie

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Dec 15, 2013
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Definitely agree that the 128gb is a pain. I'm thinking about purchasing a 1TB one for my PC and giving him my 250 gb SSD, so that would be an improvement.

As far as monitors, we haven't picked one out yet and I know very little about them. We definitely don't have the budget for something top of the line. We're looking to spend around $200. Probably should have increased the budget and included the monitor in it, IDK. Genuinely did not know until now that it made that much of a difference.
 

tennis2

Honorable
For a $200 budget, you're going to get a 1080p monitor. If that's the case, you certainly don't need a 2070 Super.

Is WiFi needed?

PCPartPicker Part List

CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 3.6 GHz 6-Core Processor ($199.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte B550 AORUS PRO AC ATX AM4 Motherboard ($174.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: GeIL EVO SPEAR Phantom Gaming 16 GB (2 x 8 GB) DDR4-3200 CL16 Memory ($54.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro 512 GB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive ($64.98 @ Amazon)
Video Card: MSI Radeon RX 5600 XT 6 GB GAMING X Video Card ($279.99 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Acer VG270 Pbiip 27.0" 1920x1080 144 Hz Monitor ($199.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $974.93
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2020-09-30 11:39 EDT-0400


I'm going to let that PSU slide for now, but once PSU prices return from the stratosphere, I'd strongly recommend replacing it.

Search around for sales (newegg especially). PCPartpicker (while convenient) isn't always terribly accurate on pricing.

Also, next-gen Ryzen CPUs are launching on October 8th.

Also, not sure if you're up for driving to Cleveland, OH to save $40 (you'd spend at least half that in gas), but Microcenter has a store there. They've got the Ryzen 3600 for $180 and you get another $20 off if you buy a mobo with it.
 
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Melody Marie

Honorable
Dec 15, 2013
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Thanks! Waiting is looking like more and more of a better choice. If I still wanted to take advantage of the 2070 Super (we're kind of considering waiting for the 3070) what would I be looking at for monitor prices? We're probably actually gonna use the monitor we already have for a few months so we can budget in a couple extra hundred for a good one.
 

tennis2

Honorable
You'd be looking at 1440p monitors there. They're going to range from $300-$450 depending.

Just a check - you're pretty much building your boyfriend a new PC and giving him your old case and PSU. Hope this is a lasting relationship....

Alternative. I bought an i7-3770 for $50 to replace my 3570K in my AsRock Z77 Pro4M. With Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge, you could actually overclock non-K CPUs by 400MHz. So my i7-3770 is running at 4.3GHz/4.2/4.2/4.1 for 1,2,3,4 cores loaded. Not setting the world on fire with IVB, but it plays what I need and since it has 4c/8t it doesn't get chugged down much in online games. I'm more limited by my RX480 driving my 1440p monitor. See if you can get another 2x4GB kit of RAM from your local e-waste center for cheap-cheap (I've gotten 2x4GB for $20). Then all that's left to upgrade is that 7870. Any GPU you buy will be able to be carried over to a new/different system when this IVB platform gets retired.
 
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