Need Advice -$1000 Gaming PC and an Upgrade to an Older System


May 19, 2010
Ok so I posted here a couple of weeks ago asking for advice on a gaming pc for myself, but since then my specs, needs, and budget has changed. I have no experience building pcs, but I have very knowledgeable friends who will be on speed dial, and I should be able to catch on quickly between instructions and the internet. Originally my budget for myself was around 750, but my dad offered to help me out if I was willing to build my sister a new pc and upgrade my current one to give to my brother. So now, the budget for mine is around 1000 and my brother's upgrade doesn't have a defined budget but nothing outrageous. I'll put my sister's stuff in another thread so this one isn't huge.

Approximate Purchase Date: Next Couple of Days

Budget Range: Around $950 - 1000 before rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Gaming, Surfing the internet, watching some tv programs

Parts Not Required: Mouse, Monitor, Keyboard

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg or Amazon

Country of Origin: US

Parts Preferences: None really, just reliability

Overclocking: Not planning on it, but am open to the idea

SLI or Crossfire: Wasn't planning on it, but might be open

Monitor Resolution: 1920 x 1080

Additional Comments:

I want something that will game well and perform general word processing/heavy internet surfing well. I want to be able to play Star Wars The Old Republic and the new Elder Scrolls Skyrim on really high settings with no problem. I won't play crysis 2 or Battlefield 3, so no worries there. I have a 23" LG monitor with max resolution of 1920 x 1080 @60 Hz. I'm fine buying from newegg or amazon.

This is what I have picked out so far:

Case: NZXT H2 $89.99

Processor: Intel Core i5-2500K $219.99

Motherboard: ASRock P67 EXTREME4 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 $149.99

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 $59.99

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM $59.99

DVD Burner : Lite-On 24x $23.99

Video Card: EVGA SuperClocked 01G-P3-1567-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 $239.99 (plus $20 mail-in rebate)

PSU: Antec BP550 Plus 550W Modular $64.99 (plus $15.99 mail-in rebate)

Logitech Illuminated Keyboard $59.99

NETGEAR RangeMax WNDA3100 Dual Band Wireless-N Adapter $39.99

Other Misc: Existing Hauppage PCI Express x1 TV Tuner, and a Sony Memory Card Reader $14.99

Total:$1023.89 before rebates

On processors I am so lost on whether to go with an i5 or wait for bulldozer and go AMD. I would really appreciate it if anybody could tell me whether or not I would notice any real difference between them. I also didn't know whether or not I needed an aftermarket heatsink. I want the best bang for my buck on video cards, and I'm not partial to AMD or NVidia, but I want a reliable manufacturer. I'm pretty flexible on the rest of my components. I went modular on the power supply, because I thought it would be easier for me to deal with fewer cables and also it would improve air flow.

For my brother's upgrade, he'll be getting my HP M9340f tower. Here are the specs:

It will have windows 7 on it. I'm taking the tv tuner out and putting into my new pc. He needs a new video card which will perform well on SWTOR, and will therefore probably need a larger power supply. Looking to spend no more than $150-175 on his video card. The case is kind of tight, so space and heat are big concerns here. my plan was to use the same modular power supply I'm putting in my new rig to free up some space and improve airflow.

Here is the video card I picked out, but I am definitely open to suggestions here: PowerColor AX6850 1GBD5-DH Radeon HD 6850


May 19, 2010
I agree with your suggestion, I'm going to go with the samsung drive. I was actually just reading user reviews from them. Seems much more reliable than anything else out there. Also thanks for the microcenter suggestion, I had never heard of them. I'll also cut down the ram to 8 gb. For 8, is it better to run 2 4gb sticks or 4 2gb sticks, or does it matter? <----- Please copy and paste this on here so nobody is shooting in the dark in regards to making recommendations to your build. And yes, if you do have a microcenter nearby please state that on here also. :)


May 19, 2010

I edited, and added the template. I also updated the parts list to change the hard drive to the samsung and got rid of the extra ram. I looked and I don't have a microcenter near me so it looks like newegg and amazon are my best bets.
This build allows you to add another one of those cards later on for SLI. Just add a case to it. $94.99 - $69.99 after mail-in rebate FREE SHIPPING $10 off w/ promo code EMCKBJH49, ends 8/14
Antec High Current Gamer Series HCG-750 750W ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V v2.91 SLI Certified CrossFire Certified 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply $118.99 FREE SHIPPING
GIGABYTE GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard - Virtu, Touch BIOS, Smart Response SSD, 2-Way SLI, HDMI $266.98 save: $13.00 - $20.00 Mail In Rebates FREE SHIPPING
Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K
Patriot Signature 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory with heatshield Model PSD38G1600KH $28.57 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Cooler Master Hyper 212 Plus 120mm Sleeve CPU Cooler, RR-B10-212P-G1 $59.79 & this item ships for FREE with Super Saver Shipping
Samsung 1 TB Spinpoint 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.5 inch Bulk/OEM Desktop Hard Drive HD103SJ $19.99 Free Standard Shipping (3-5 days)
Sony 24X SATA Internal DVD+/-RW Drive AD-7260S-0B - Bulk (Black) $239.99 - $219.99 after mail-in rebate card FREE SHIPPING
MSI N560GTX-Ti Twin Frozr II GeForce GTX 560 Ti (Fermi) 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card3

Total: $829.30 *not including mail in rebates and promo codes $94.99
Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM


Techno Savvy? Does this mean you know your way around a techno party?

Check and see if you live near a microcenter you can get your cpu/mobo from there for gg deals.

I would suggest getting

Samsung Spinpoint f3 1Tb 7200rpm - $60 (500GB less but faster/more reliable)

I wouldn't ever buy 2x4gb and 2x2gb for the same system. besides lol you only need 8GB at most..

Its alot easier to tell someone they are doing something wrong than it is to try to fix the solution for them amiri?

Seesh, did a bunch of termites crawl up your butt or something?!
I already posted a build in his "$750 build for my sister" thread. Maybe by looking at the build over there can give him
some idea as to what to pick for his personal build.



May 19, 2010
Thanks everyone for all the advice! From your recommendations, I changed my hard drive to the Samsung, for the power supply I went with the Antec High Current Gaming Series (in case I decide to get a second video card a little later), and went with 8 gb of ram instead of 12. Parts are on order :)