Need help with $500 Budget System

montaire

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Mar 19, 2009
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Good Afternoon!

Im looking to build a new gaming rig for myself, and I have to do it on a very tight budget. Im looking to spend about $500 and I will be purchasing this within the next few days.

Most of my gaming is MMO (EVE-Online) or Strategy Games (Empire : Total War, Sins of a Solar Empire) - I dont play any FPS's. My monitor does 1680 x 1050.

I will be running Windows XP - I have the license already and wont need to buy a new one. Most of the links are NewEgg, since that seems like the popular choice around here, but I have no preference towards them. Actually I get free 2nd day shipping at amazon.com so I'd prefer to buy there, but I understand they have a somewhat sub par selection.

Here is my idea for a build :

Motherboard : GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3R LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128359
Processor : Intel Core 2 Duo E7400 Wolfdale 2.8GHz 3MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115206
Procesor Cooling : Rosewill RCX-Z775-SL 92mm 2 Ball CPU Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835200024
Ram : CORSAIR 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Dual Channel
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145215
Video Card : GeForce GTS 250 512MB Core Edition 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150357
Power Supply : Rosewill Stallion Series RD450
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817182075
Hard Drive : Western Digital Caviar SE WD3200AAJS 320GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136098

Case : No case picked out, open to suggestions. Dont need anything fancy.

Im not married to the idea of any of these pieces, but I figured if asking for help I should in having done some of the homework on my own.
The parts I am most concerned with are the Power Supply and the CPU Cooling Fan.

Any feedback you can give would be appreciated.
 

MykC

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Nov 24, 2008
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http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.165025 Phenom II 720 with Biostar 790GX $210 - $10MIR ($45 combo discount)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145184 2x2GB Corsair DDR2 800 $45 - $25MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136152 LG DVD Burner $25
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136074 WD 320GB AAKS $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042 Antec 300 $55
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341010 OCZ 600W $70 - $20MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812887001 6pin adapters $3 x2

$430 - 45MIR. Whatever you have left for a video card. Depending on how much you want to spend:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=Property&Subcategory=48&Description=&Type=&N=2010380048&srchInDesc=&MinPrice=&MaxPrice=&OEMMark=0&PropertyCodeValue=679%3A44946 512MB 4830 $90 - $15MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=Property&Subcategory=48&Description=&Type=&N=2010380048&srchInDesc=&MinPrice=&MaxPrice=&OEMMark=0&PropertyCodeValue=679%3A40677 512MB 4850 $140 - $30MIR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=Property&Subcategory=48&Description=&Type=&N=2010380048&srchInDesc=&MinPrice=&MaxPrice=&OEMMark=0&PropertyCodeValue=679%3A40678&PropertyCodeValue=683%3A20729 1GB 4870 $200 - $30MIR

Anyone these options will leave the door open xfire solution down the road. Otherwise the open you picked is fine. The Phenom II 720BE is clear step up over the E7400. The AM2+ also has more life left in it for future upgrades.

Upgrades:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835186020 Artic MX-2 Thermal Compound $7
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233003 Xigma $37 - $10MIR (AMD)
 

MykC

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Nov 24, 2008
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If you wanted to stick with Intel the only thing I would change about the setup is:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.173009 E7400 with Asus PQ5 Pro P45 $225 - $15MIR ($15 combo discount)
and this is if you want to OC:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231209 2x2GB G.Skill PI Black DDR2 800 $45
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835233029 Xigma Dark Knight $40 (Intel)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835186020 Artic MX-2 Thermal Compound $7
 

montaire

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Mar 19, 2009
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MykC -

Thanks for the reply. The sticky I'd read at the top of the forum indicated that AMD was really behind the curve on the Dual Core systems, but that it worked well on the Quad Core system. I did not even think to look at Tripple Core systems.

I usually prefer Nvidia, and the items I'd read said that at my price point ATI had really closed the gap.

Does the graphics card you suggested compare favorably to the Nvidia ?
 

orangegator

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Do Not get a Rosewill PSU. They're generally garbage. Get an Antec, PCP&C, Corsair, or Seasonic. Also, for about the same price, you can get a much better hd4870 video card. Also, get ddr2-800 CL4 ram. It's cheaper. You don't need 1066 ram for overclocking an e7400.
 

montaire

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Mar 19, 2009
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OrangeGator :

My current machine I got an Antec 550 PSU and it died 8 months in. Are they generally reliable and I just had a bout of bad luck ?
 

MykC

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Nov 24, 2008
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http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/geforce-gtx-radeon,2218-4.html Its a good article that will support when I say that at the same price:
The 4830 = 9800GT
The 4850 = The GTS 250/9800GTX+
The 1GB 4870 = 896MB GTX260

I recommend the ATI cards because given both platforms (AMD or Intel) you have the option to crossfire rather then replace the GPU entirely. In your position it will often give you value over neglecting the crossfire option given your situation.