Help with gaming build with approx $1000 budget

orsalak

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Jun 21, 2009
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APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: This week - approx. $1000 budget

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: gaming, surfing the internet, productivity software, watching movies (I tend to have several windows open at once)

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com, microcenter.com (they have a local store)

PARTS PREFERENCES: None.

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe
SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Probabaly

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1200 - I have a Samsung 226cw

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'm leaning toward running Windows 7


I found 2 VisionTek 4870 512mg cards for $129 each, I grabbed them on sale but can return them if they aren't any good. newegg has a card that looked almost the same that got really good reviews, but I noticed the part number was a couple digits offs.
http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml?product_id=0292287
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814129113 (this looks close to the same, but I slightly different stock number)

I obviously need a crossfire board if I stick with these cards and a psu that can support them. I'm currently leaning toward AMD

Cases
Would this one fit the cards? Looks like it has good cooling.
99.99 (79.99 with $20 mail-in rebate 6/26/2009) NZXT TEMPEST Crafted Series CS-NT-TEM-B Black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811146047

Should be plenty big but might be overkill. Combo discount brings it down another $30.
149.99 COOLER MASTER HAF 932 RC-932-KKN1-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer Case - Retail
119.99 (99.99 with $20 mail-in rebate) CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
239.98 (-$30 for combo; 214.98 with $20 mail-in rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.201930


Motherboard + CPU
This combo has a nice discount. Not sure if this board would support crossfire with these cards?
129.99 (114.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard – Retail
139.00 AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Black Processor Model HDZ720WFGIBOX – Retail
214.99 (-$54 for combo; 199.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.203011

Same board with better processor. Is this processor worth the extra $130?
129.99 (114.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard – Retail
245.00 (Free Shipping) AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
354.99 (-$20 for combo; 339.99 with $15 mail-in rebate) http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.203011


RAM
64.99 G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL8D-4GBHK - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231189


Drives
74.99 (Free Shipping) Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive – OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319
22.99 SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 16X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache IDE 22X DVD±R DVD Burner – OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151175


I'm open to totally scraping what I have listed if you have better suggestions. I espcially need motherboard advice, I don't really know what to look for ensure my cards are properly supported. Thanks!
 

cod4ftwguy

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Jun 12, 2009
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I can build you a good core i7 rig for about 1000

COOLER MASTER Centurion 590- $59.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119152

ASUS P6T SE LGA 1366 Intel X58 ATX Intel Motherboard- $209.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131386

Patriot Viper 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600- $85.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820220365

Intel Core i7 920- $279.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115202

Western Digital Caviar 640 GB- $64.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218

SAPPHIRE 4890 OC edition- $199.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102831

CORSAIR 550w Modular-$99.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102831

Samsung 22x SATA Burner- $24.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151171

$1025.99
 

orsalak

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Jun 21, 2009
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18,510
Thanks for the feedback!

Would the 4890 you listed at 199.99 be a better value than 259.98 for the two 4870s I listed?

I'm defintely open to Intel, but it seems like many of the post I've seen recently have been pushing AMDs as a better solution for the money. Do I really get the value for the extra cost for intel?
 
No, you'll get better performance with 4870CF. As to the Asus 790GX board, you'll take a small performance hit compared to the 790FX, but given your usage you should try to get into the quad.

The Tempest is a good case, and the HAF is excellent. Another case to consider is the Cooler Master 690.
 

orsalak

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Jun 21, 2009
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18,510
So, given my usage, what are your thoughts between intel and AMD? That FX motherboard is a bit more and makes me wonder if looking at intel starts to make sense. And I'm guessing this is the board you are recommending for the AMD route?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131361

Also, any idea if those video cards will fit in the Tempest case? I keep reading how space tends to be a problem with some of these newer video cards.
 

belial2k

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Feb 16, 2009
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I would really consider going with the i7 build, but keeping your video cards and power supply...it will end up at about $1100, but the extra $100 will be getting you large gain in cpu performance, as at stock speeds in most usage the i7 will outperform the amd940 by about 15% - 25% (depending on the app). And if you need more power in the future you can upgrade the cooling and the i7 overclocks like a champ on the Asus p6t boards. 4.0 on good cooling ($70 -$100 hs/fan) is fairly easy.
 
As belial2K has suggested, once you start looking at 790FX boards and AMD quads, you might as well get an i7.

[strike]No, I would not suggest a 790FX board. What I'm saying is spend your money were you will get the most performance out of it.... Let me look at the numbers here.[/strike]

Actually, it's not as bad as I thought :p

I think I would do this:

AMD X4 955 -245

Gigabyte 790X DDR3 -140
.... For 40 dollars more this is probably the better choice:
Asus 790FX DDR3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131363

OCZ 4GB 1600Mhz Platinum -71

Cooler master 690 -80

PC P&C 750W -110

The drives you listed.

After market cooler and paste:
Scythe Mugen - 37
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185093

MX-2 -8
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835186020


You can save a boatload on the X3/790GX combo. I had no idea the price had gone down. I think for a multi-tasker that wants to be happy with his build for a while, this will be better though.