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Old 08-03-2012, 01:10 AM   #1
draconian139
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building a bargain pc

I'm considering building a pc, mainly so I'll have something to run GW2 on. I know very little about hardware so my parts list might be entirely messed up.

Storage capacity isn't really a concern of mine, graphics aren't a very high priority either, as long as it runs it smoothly on medium I'll be happy. I do care about load times, ensuring it never even approaches overheating, and getting it to run as silently as possible.

$800 is the max I'm willing to pay but would prefer to stay under $700.

Current part list I'm considering: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/dIRf

It was made by basically following: http://www.hardware-revolution.com/b...-pc-july-2012/

Will this build function as I hope? Are there better alternatives for some parts that are still in my price range? Any cheap ways to help reduce the noise level further or should it run pretty much silently already?

Thanks for taking the time to read this over, any input would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-03-2012, 03:04 AM   #2
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It looks pretty good. I do have a couple suggestions. You can get a 6870 for around $140 with rebate. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814150561 And two, you need more power. I'd get at least 500 Watts. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817152028 and http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817341017 both look really good and inexpensive.
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Old 08-03-2012, 09:41 AM   #3
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http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819115089 minus 20

just get the cheapest intel quad core you can, the performance difference is negligible.

everything else is fine, 450w is plenty for this system.
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:29 AM   #4
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Updated parts list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/dK1r

Both the graphics card and cpu suggestions look good, thanks for both of those. From what I've read the power supply should be sufficient like kaidash said even if it is a bit smaller than most.

Will it run fairly quietly or is there even a way to tell before putting it together? I'm concerned about this because the last pc I owned was pretty loud, then again that was nearly a decade ago.

Is there anything I need to be aware of if I ever do decide to upgrade it further? I already know I wouldn't be able to do crossfire but that doesn't bother me. I might do a 2 monitor setup at some point(one to game on while using the other to look things up online.) I think this build would support this but I'm not sure.
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:51 AM   #5
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I have a 6850, and it's really quiet, so you shouldn't have a problem. I still suggest you get a better power supply since the minimum suggest psu is 500w. The 530 watt power is also only $40. You also need 2x6 pin connectors for your graphics card so the current psu won't work out. As far as multiple monitors, it looks like the 6870 has a max resolution of 2560 x 1600, but I could be wrong. You should be able to hook up a second monitor though.
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Old 08-03-2012, 03:35 PM   #6
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Just stumbled across this bundle on newegg while looking at psus
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboB...=Combo.1018125

It seems to be equal to or better than what I was going to get with the exception of a 6850 instead of a 6870 and is cheaper by a good deal. One concern that I have is it being amd phenom instead of intel but from http://www.cpu-world.com/Compare/816...5_i5-2310.html it looks like it might actually be better than the 2310. Am I interpreting that correctly?

I'm also assuming that with three on board fans it should have sufficient cooling, is that correct or do I still need to buy a better one?

Edit:derped, tabbing to performance instead of specs clearly shows that the i5 is better. I don't understand what most of the numbers actually mean though. I'm guessing that its mainly showing that the i5 is faster in regards to everything but how much faster would it be in practice?

If I do go with the i5 I need to find a different psu since most 6850s and all 6870s need two PCIE slots. The reason that I'm wary of the $40 550W is that I'm finding many negative aspects to it. Its supposedly inefficient and has a fan that is both loud and prone to breaking.

Last edited by draconian139; 08-03-2012 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:44 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by draconian139 View Post
Edit:derped, tabbing to performance instead of specs clearly shows that the i5 is better. I don't understand what most of the numbers actually mean though. I'm guessing that its mainly showing that the i5 is faster in regards to everything but how much faster would it be in practice?

If I do go with the i5 I need to find a different psu since most 6850s and all 6870s need two PCIE slots. The reason that I'm wary of the $40 550W is that I'm finding many negative aspects to it. Its supposedly inefficient and has a fan that is both loud and prone to breaking.
In practice, Intels are faster than the Phenoms. Beyond the obvious differences in posted speed (2.9Ghz vs 3.4Ghz), but the IPC performance is much better as well.

Considering that you'll be playing console ports, you'll want something that would at least be more efficient than last gen (actually, last two gen, but who's counting?) hardware at the same price point. Plus, if you ever play WoW, you'll notice that the FPS will go up with an Intel than Phenom (not because Blizzard is biased... it's because the IPC performance is that much better) with the same graphic card. Actually, most blizzard games fall into this category as well.

About your concerns with PSU fans.... no. Most PSU's uses ball bearing fans, which is proven to make less noise than your average case fans (typically sleeve bearing) and are designed to run between 400-1500 rpm (which for a 120mm fan, is fairly slow and quiet). However, if you run the PSU closer to the maximum output capacity, the fan will kick in, which makes it louder.

Good rule of thumb: Take the maximum power draw of a theoretical computer, add 20% overhead (to compensate for capacitor aging which draws more power), and you have your PSU wattage. 450W is cutting it fairly close. I'd recommend something in the 500-550W range.

I found precious few reviews (four, to be precise. Three were in Mandarin and one in english, though this website isn't known for being impartial) about that Antec VP450, and there was only one or two mentions on johnnyGURU (top forum for PSU).

EDIT: I saw the concerns about the 2x 6-pin cable. Most graphic cards nowadays come with two-molex to 6-pin adapters, and in the rare case that it doesn't, you can always get it here.

So... I'd keep this Antec in mind and look for another one.

Your system is looking good.

My recommendation: ram is cheap, buy more. Bump it up to 16Gb and call it a day. Case: do your research and find other cases at that price point that offers similar features (PSU at bottom, cable management holes, 90 degree HDD bay, great airflow, etcetc) -- case in point, I bought a NZXT Gamma for $40. It's an ugly case for sure, but it had all the features I wanted. Then I shoved it into my desk and closed the door, and now I don't have to see it anymore, lol.

Last edited by Deplore; 08-03-2012 at 08:47 PM.
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:47 PM   #8
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I still suggest you get a better power supply since the minimum suggest psu is 500w.
I have a GTX260 OC in my old system, which runs with 420W even though 500W is labeled as "minimum required" - it works just fine, so you can ignore what is recommended/suggested.
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Old 08-03-2012, 09:37 PM   #9
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About your concerns with PSU fans....no. Most PSU's use ballbearing fans,which isproven to makelessnoisethan youraverage case fans (typically sleeve bearing)and are designed to run between 400-1500 rpm (which for a 120mm fan, is fairly slow and quiet). However, if you run the PSU closer to the maximum output capacity, the fan will kick in, which makes it louder.
I know this is generally true but I saw a few comments complaining about the fan on the Raidmax psu that was listed earlier. I also saw several people complaining that it broke around the six month mark and Raidmax psus in general seem to have a reputation for being unreliable. In contrast the comments I've seen about the Antec on amazon sound overwhelmingly good.

I wish the AMD performed better, it being rated as faster in terms of Ghz got my hopes up. If it means having low fps in an MMO then I definitely need to go with the i5 build instead.

In terms of the ram 8GB will work fine for me, I could increase it to 16GB but would rather use that money towards getting a better monitor. If I change my mind later its simple enough to buy 2 more sticks.

About the case, I'm honestly confused as to what's wrong with the one on my build.

Last edited by draconian139; 08-03-2012 at 09:43 PM.
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:32 PM   #10
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the gpu manufacturers say 500w (or whatever they say) because most people just buy the cheapest psu they can with no research at all - they get pick up something that is unable to deliver the power it says it can.
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by draconian139 View Post
I know this is generally true but I saw a few comments complaining about the fan on the Raidmax psu that was listed earlier. I also saw several people complaining that it broke around the six month mark and Raidmax psus in general seem to have a reputation for being unreliable. In contrast the comments I've seen about the Antec on amazon sound overwhelmingly good.

I wish the AMD performed better, it being rated as faster in terms of Ghz got my hopes up. If it means having low fps in an MMO then I definitely need to go with the i5 build instead.

About the case, I'm honestly confused as to what's wrong with the one on my build.
Sorry, I forget that I'm not on my overclocking forum... over there, it's generally accepted that PSU is your most important aspect of the computer part, followed by CPU. If the PSU fails, it can fail in unexpected way... like frying half of the components in your PC. A good PSU will mitigate as damage as much as it can, usually only taking itself out when it fails.

Raidmax? Yeaaaah....no.

Let me put it this way (and I'm being kind), those PSUs, along with Aspire, Apevia, Rosewill (Newegg's own brand, rebrands other PSUs, usually CoolMax), CoolMax, most of Thermaltake, APEX, ABS and Sparkle PSU brands have less than stellar performances.

By 'less than stellar' I mean not rated for the advertised power (most of their PSUs can't even supply the advertised wattage without spewing out fireworks), lacking half of the protection measures one would expect in a modern PSU (OCP, OVP, UCP, SCP...), cutting corners on almost everything (literally, because if the screws pop off, you're liable to cut yourself on the extremely sharp edges of the PSU case) leads to disaster, often within months.

So basically, you want any PSUs made by the brands listed in this list. Your $40 antec is much better than Raidmax, and it will power your computer just fine.

I'm a big fan of "Buying right, buying once" adage, and this especially applies to PSUs.


As to the case, no, there is no problem with the one you chose. For the price they're asking, you could do a little better though. I can't recommend a case because it's a purely personal preference. I chose mine because it had function over form and it was cheap.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:00 PM   #12
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Yeah, it seems like AMD doesn't have any competitive cpus for gaming right now. Tom's Hardware did recommend the i5 as the best gaming cpu for $180. http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...ck,3106-3.html I also think you should definitely be fine with 8gb of ram. I don't see a problem with your case either.

---------- Post automerged at 11:00 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:50 PM ----------

Oh, and the CORSAIR Builder Series CX500 V2 500W is on sale for $35 with rebate on newegg today. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...-027-_-Product It looks like a good deal, but I'm not the most knowledgeable about psus.

Edit: and what are you using for storage? The ssd should be fine for windows and some games, but you'll want a tb or two for other data.

Last edited by bob99; 08-03-2012 at 11:04 PM.
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Old 08-04-2012, 03:55 PM   #13
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Updated parts list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/dPra

PSU:upgraded it to a 600W Silverstone. It seems good and is on the approved brands list. If I understand PSU degradation correctly the extra wattage should help it last longer. I think I could have done as well with the 500W version but the price difference was minimal. Reason I didn't go with the corsair is because I saw multiple people complaining about receiving a DOA one.

Case:I definitely wouldn't mind a cheaper case with similar features including a 2.5" slot for the ssd, I'd want it to have minimal to no leds though and haven't seen any that would fit these requirements.

Storage:I know I'm weird for this but I've never had a need for a large harddrive. My laptop has 150GB, I've had it for about five years, and its only half full. If I do find the need to buy an additional one I can do so later.

Peripherals:I know I'd like to use video game controllers with the system, I'd prefer to do this without dongles. I believe http://www.amazon.com/6230-IEEE-802-.../dp/B004PG08SE will suit my purposes and let me use a ps3 controller. I'd love to have an internal choice to let me use a 360 controller as well but haven't been able to find anything like this. Is it simply not possible?

Apologies in advance if it takes me a while to respond to replies, my internet access is limited due to being in the process of moving.
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Old 08-04-2012, 04:33 PM   #14
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Using a 360 controller is easy, just buy a any xbox 360 wired controller and it will work as is. If you get a wireless controller, you will need to buy a wireless receiver.
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:24 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by draconian139 View Post
Updated parts list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/dPra

PSU:upgraded it to a 600W Silverstone. It seems good and is on the approved brands list. If I understand PSU degradation correctly the extra wattage should help it last longer. I think I could have done as well with the 500W version but the price difference was minimal. Reason I didn't go with the corsair is because I saw multiple people complaining about receiving a DOA one.

Case:I definitely wouldn't mind a cheaper case with similar features including a 2.5" slot for the ssd, I'd want it to have minimal to no leds though and haven't seen any that would fit these requirements.

Storage:I know I'm weird for this but I've never had a need for a large harddrive. My laptop has 150GB, I've had it for about five years, and its only half full. If I do find the need to buy an additional one I can do so later.

Peripherals:I know I'd like to use video game controllers with the system, I'd prefer to do this without dongles. I believe http://www.amazon.com/6230-IEEE-802-.../dp/B004PG08SE will suit my purposes and let me use a ps3 controller. I'd love to have an internal choice to let me use a 360 controller as well but haven't been able to find anything like this. Is it simply not possible?

Apologies in advance if it takes me a while to respond to replies, my internet access is limited due to being in the process of moving.
I went and did a couple search about that PSU.

http://www.realhardtechx.com/index_archivos/Page998.htm

http://translate.google.com/translat...9/2699864.html

Not bad at all. It's made by Sirtec (rebranded as Silverstone, oddly enough) but it wont kill your stuff when it dies and it won't damage your stuff with out of spec voltage ripples under load. Not the best, but it won't kill. All in all, a good choice.

I would very strongly recommend getting a regular platter drive. I know you were fine with a 160Gb hdd on your laptop, but gaming computer is a completely different beast. I'm reasonably sure that you don't install many games on your laptop, which is why you have plenty of space left, but expect many modern games to take up gigabytes of space (even WoW takes up 25Gb by itself) and you'll definitely see that 128Gb SSD fill up in no time.

I have three 640Gb and one 320Gb HDD in my gaming computer and they're all full. In fact, the 320Gb has only 40Gb free space (considering that it's my boot drive) -- that should tell you something.

You can do what you want, but I would at the very least keep the option of adding extra HDDs open in case you fill up your SSD.

As to controllers, I don't know about PS3 controllers (I haven't tried them on my computer) but the wired 360 are all plug and play. Just plug em in your computer and it'll automatically install drivers.
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Old 08-06-2012, 02:20 AM   #16
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Using a 360 controller is easy, just buy a any xbox 360 wired controller and it will work as is. If you get a wireless controller, you will need to buy a wireless receiver.
If you're talking about wireless 360 controllers, you won't. Wireless 360 controllers come with a receiver.

About cases: I've been pretty pleased with my Cooler Master 690 II. Its fans do have LEDs, but there's a switch you can use to turn them off. I have the Advanced version, which comes with various extras like a 2.5" bracket for SSDs. There's a $10 price difference between the two, with the basic version priced at $70.
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Old 08-06-2012, 04:45 PM   #17
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As I have done with others, I would suggest making a thread in "General Hardware" on Hardforum as well as asking on DLP. Both threads together = win.

There's another guy over there too looking to upgrade his computer to play GW2. The recommendation for him came out to just over $800 with Win7 included, and I think he was only reusing 1/2 parts, so you might be able to knock that down to your price range.
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Old 08-07-2012, 09:00 PM   #18
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Thanks to everyone for all the help, I took the plunge and its currently in transit now .
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