Strict $800 first-time build

ti1706

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I'm looking to build a system, this will be a first attempt for me, I appreciate any recommendations you guys might have.
Hate to dampen spirits, but I have a firm $800.00 limit INCLUDING taxes, shipping, and any other charges (such as the OS, and any first-timer items).
Lastly, I do NOT need a monitor, I have an acceptable one (LCD) already.

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: ASAP

BUDGET RANGE: US $0-800.00

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Flash animation/games rendering, internet browsing, music composition/listening, video editing, movies/gaming

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Monitor, and I am not adverse to grabbing a discount keyboard and mouse.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg.com, or anything with a clean reputation.

PARTS PREFERENCES: an Intel processor (AMD, if better bang for buck)

OVERCLOCKING: Despite no experience, I'd like to try and overclock. As for Crossfire/SLI, I'm not a high-end gamer, so... probably no.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'm a big multi-tasker (4-5 internet pages, Sony Vegas, Notepad, Core Media Player would be typical), The extent of my gaming aspirations is a WoW-esque game. I render a lot of Flash, and I'd like to start doing some graphics work (anyone recommend a good pen tablet?). I hope to be able to upgrade and reuse this build for a couple of years (better graphics card, sound card, RAM, etc.).
Hard Drive size isn't a big concern for me (250gb or better is fine), but its access speed is. For the sake of not falling behind, I'd prefer DDR3 RAM. Finally, I've been using XP for years, waiting out Vista... so I'll probably go with a 64-bit version (Home is fine) and upgrade to 7.

Many thanks for your time.
 
Intel Core i5 750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail $210
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115215

Intel BOXDP55WB LGA 1156 Intel P55 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813121388

G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F3-10600CL9D-4GBNT - Retail $73
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231253

PC Power & Cooling Silencer PPCS420X 420W ATX12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Retail $50
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817703017

Western Digital Caviar Black WD6401AALS 640GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM $75
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

Sony Optiarc Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD/CD Rewritable Drive - OEM $33
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827118030

SPARKLE SX96GT1024D2HP GeForce 9600 GT 1GB 256-bit GDDR2 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814187053

Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders w/ Tech Guarantee - OEM $110
Microsoft Gift - Windows 7 Release Candidate 1 x64 64-Bit - OEM Free w/combo
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.208025

COOLER MASTER Elite RC-310-BWN1-GP Black Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail $40
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119203

Total $770.91 plus$27.22 Shipping to my house plus no tax = $798.13

If money suddenly becomes available, first upgrade would be to buy a larger psu ~550W, eg this specific OCZ 550W:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341022

Next upgrade would be more, or slightly lower latency memory. This PC would be ready for pretty hot gamin, should you desire, with only a new 5xxx vid card bought next year. Meanwhile, the 9800GT won't let you down, either.

There is no keyboard, mouse, speakers, or monitors - use what you use now.

I also assume you have a screwdriver :)

PS: If you live close to a microcenter, we can save $30 on the cpu less whatever sales tax you pay.
 

build

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Alright I managed to conjure up a decent I5 set-up for under $800. Here goes:

Intel Core i5 750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz
+
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1333 CL7
Combo Price: $286.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.250493

GIGABYTE GA-P55M-UD2
+
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit
Combo Price: $209.98
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.259574.13-128-405

Antec Three Hundred Black Steel
+
Antec Basiq BP500U 500W Continuous Power
Combo Price: $99.94
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.245591

MSI R4850-2D1G OC Radeon HD 4850 1GB
$119.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127435

SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache
$49.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822152181

LITE-ON CD/DVD Burner - Bulk Black SATA
$28.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827106289

Grand Total = $795.87
$15 Mail in Rebate
 

stumpystumped

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+1 for build's build.


Great CPU, can overclock and also significant turbo if using 1 or 2 cores. Good choice of motherboard as Intel boards don't overclock. Good solid case plus decent PSU. In turns of graphics card, that would depend on the software, if the rendering software takes advantage of CUDA or Stream then it's quite easy to decide on nVidia or ATI card. Personally I'm a fan of Seagate HDD as they are generally faster than Samsung but you have to stay within budget.
 
Other than the after market h/s at the bottom of this post, everything in this build is free shipping.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.245591 Combo Discount: -$15.00 Combo Price: $99.94 Free Shipping*
Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Antec Basiq BP500U 500W Continuous Power ATX12V Version 2.01 Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

http://www.ewiz.com/detail.php?name=MB-P55M-D2 Combo Price: $299.98 | $279.98 $20 off w/ code 3DAYCPU20 Free Shipping
GIGABYTE GA-P55M-UD2 Socket 1156/ Intel P55/ DDR3/ CrossFireX/ A&GbE/ MATX Motherboard
Intel Core i5 Processor i5-750 2.66GHz 8MB LGA1156 CPU, Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.256305 Combo Discount: -$15.00 Combo Price: $184.98 $10.00 Mail-In Rebate Card Price After Mail-In Rebate(s): $174.98 Free Shipping*
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Retail
MSI N250GTS-2D512-OCv2 GeForce GTS 250 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.259577.22-152-181 Combo Discount: -$10.00 Combo Price: $149.98 Free Shipping*
SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - Retail
Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit for System Builders w/ Tech Guarantee - OEM | Includes free Windows 7 upgrade coupon

http://www.ewiz.com/detail.php?name=SHS223B_BE $29.99 Free Ground Shipping
Samsung SH-S223B/BEBE 22X SATA DVD+/-RW Internal Drive (Black), Bulk w/o Software

Total: $744.87 | $734 w/mail in rebate

*Same build but with this vid card set up.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.256276 Combo Discount: -$15.00 Combo Price: $199.98 Free Shipping*
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Retail
SAPPHIRE 279L Radeon HD 4870 512MB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail

Total: $759.87

This h/s below includes thermal compound and it's good for a light over clock.

http://www.ewiz.com/detail.php?name=FAN-RR910H $17.99
Cooler Master Hyper TX3 RR-910-HTX3-GP CPU Fan For Intel LGA1156/775 & AMD AM3/AM2/940/939/754
 

ti1706

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Thanks for the replies, guys.

I'm going to need some help deciding which build is best... so anyone with an opinion, feel free to jump in.

Looking over build's build, I noticed that the GB motherboard has been criticized for not recognizing all available RAM. However, commentators also claimed the problem was easy fix via the alteration of the BIOS settings. Since I'm trying to avoid leading my wallet to the slaughter (Never altered BIOS, before...heh....) should I be worried about the RAM/mobo compatibility?

... and even though, the Antec 300 ATX seems to be the case of choice, I'm not so sure 1 USB (I presume "Front Ports: USB, Audio" means 1 USB?) will suit me (my internet router requires 1... meaning no room to spare). Feel free to correct me (I'll be honest, I didn't read all 1400 reviews on newegg) if I'm wrong.


Thanks, again, for the help, so far (and sorry for all the paraphrasing).


EDIT: Would anyone mind commenting on how far I could SAFELY overclock these builds? I would appreciate it.
 


Asus, MSI, Gigabyte boards, etc... all these P55 boards have been having that memory glitch. There's already a bios update in the works to fix that problem.
 

ti1706

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Until that update is ready, though, are these builds still stable? I'm assuming they are.
 


Stable as a rock. CPU-Z shows all the memory, it's a Windows glitch I believe that is related to Vista, and not Windows 7. So the update will either come via the new bios, or better yet a MS update. The memory is there, it's just Vista has a bug when showing it. Those boards are good as gold.
 

ti1706

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Thanks for the simile, Why_Me.

So, I guess that puts me back onto choosing a build... once again, anyone with an opinion, feel free to post.

... and might you (Why_Me) know whether or not the Antec has 1 USB, or whether it was poorly described?
 



It has two front USB ports on that case. If you look at the pics on new egg...or better yet check this link out down below.

http://www.antec.com/Believe_it/product.php?id=MjQ= <--- Antec 300
 

ti1706

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I see (heh... I should have checked Antec's site....), thanks again.
 

ti1706

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So, in an effort to maintain interest in my dilemma....

The Votes Stand At:

build's build: 1(StumpyStumped)

Why_Me's build: 1(Psycho Sykes)

Twoboxer's build: 0

Personally, I'm starting to favor Sykes' choice... mainly because of his avatar... but, still....

Any input is welcome.

 


On average the gts 250 run neck and neck with the ati 4850 with the gts beating it out maybe 6 out of 10 benchmarks. I edited my build up above to also give you this option. Personally I like Nvidea cards due to the fact they are low maintenance but this card down below get's better scores on average than the gts 250 and the 4850.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.256276 Combo Discount: -$15.00 Combo Price: $199.98 Free Shipping*
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Retail
SAPPHIRE 279L Radeon HD 4870 512MB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail



 


A few sites have that RC dl but not MS anymore. You would have to dl it off of one of those sites, and then pick up the key from MS site. It's doable though.
 

ti1706

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Being inexperienced, I'd like to minimize confusion... so having an OS right off the bat would be a plus for me.
However, if the Release Candidate works fine, then I don't see why I couldn't use it....

It's unlikely that my budget will change, though, so if the reason for doing this is to save money for better parts, it might not work out.
Still, I might be able to buckle down for a bit, if the long-term benefit is worth it.
 

psycho sykes

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How about:
-----------------------------------
CPU: i5 750 Lynnfield -- $210
Main-Board: ASUS P7P55D LE LGA 1156 Intel P55 -- $144
RAM: OCZ Gold 4GB DDR3 1066MHz Cas7 -- $74
GPU: GIGABYTE Radeon HD 4850 1GB -- $105
HSF: COOLER MASTER Intel Core i5 HSF -- $30 Or 2 -- $20
PSU: Corsair TX 650 -- $90
Case: Antec Three Hundred Black -- $50
HDD: Samsung SpinPoint F3 500GB -- $50
DVD Drive: LITE-ON CD/DVD Burner SATA -- $29

--------------------
Total: $772 Without MIRs, Combos or SH and Tax.

Tell me if you need anything else.

Medo
 

psycho sykes

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Till march 2010 I'm sure you'd be able to save $130+ by only one dollar a day!!
So just save Dollar a day and get the Win7 2010 when it comes out (RC will start to shutdown on March 10th not 1m before!)

Medo
 

ti1706

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Well, that sounds like a plan. There are no hidden restrictions on the RC, then?

As for the build, nice psu, and with the fan... how far could it safely oc?

Does anyone else have advice? Why_Me?
 

psycho sykes

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I don't know about the fan since there's no reviews yet.
For the RC it DOES have hidden restrictions which won't affect you till March 10th 2010 when the auto shutdown (after 2Hours of operation) feature in initiated.

EDIT: I added another Case and Main-Board for other options (previous post)

Medo
 

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