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Need help with a new build for a friend!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi guys,

So I recently convinced my friend to finally spend the money to build a new PC as hers was dying out. I've built a couple PC's in the past (3 years ago), but I haven't really looked up anything related to it since. I need some advice and help on picking the right parts so that she can enjoy gaming with our group of friends without any problems.

Her budget is $1,000, but I'm thinking she would only need around $700~$800 to build a really nice PC.
Purpose will be mainly for gaming, schoolwork, and other minor things.
She has a monitor so that is covered, but I don't think she has a OS for this new build.

Any help and suggestions would be great!
post #2 of 7
Hello mate.

Where are you located? Thats my first question.
If it's the USA, 1) do you have a preferred website to use, and 2) are you near a Microcenter store?

Do you know what monitor she has already, or at least what size/refresh-rate/resolution?
Are there specific games which you play and wish to run particularly well ie: Physx enable games?
Does she have high storage requirements? What kind of school work is it, as in, general academic (MS Office & interwebs) or specific professional work involving PC's like graphic design or film editing etc?

Finally, is there any interest in overclocking to maximize bang-for-the-buck?

I'm guessing an i5 Haswell, 8gb RAM, GTX970, 120gb SSD, 2tb HDD, 550watt PSU, mATX case. Nothing flashy, nice and clean. Can probably be done for $800 or so comfortably, and is aroudn the best of all worlds (price/performance/longevity/upgradeability/etc).
 
PortaPuter
(6 items)
 
 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3210m 2gb Radeon HD7670m DDR3 @ 780mhz/1095mhz 6gb DDR3 1600mhz 500gb HDD 
OSMonitor
Windows 8 64bit 14" Brightview LED (1366x768) 
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PortaPuter
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CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3210m 2gb Radeon HD7670m DDR3 @ 780mhz/1095mhz 6gb DDR3 1600mhz 500gb HDD 
OSMonitor
Windows 8 64bit 14" Brightview LED (1366x768) 
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hey there, thanks for the fast reply!

1) I'm located in the USA, I don't have a preferred website to use. Anything that will get me the best price, but of course trustworthy.
2) Unfortunately, I don't live near any Microcenters.
3) I don't know what the specifics of her monitor, but she seems content with it. If it comes down to buying a new monitor she is willing to spend the extra $
4) Well she plays LoL mostly, but wants a rig for upcoming games such as Far Cry 4 (don't need ultra settings) and others.
5) It would be used for general academic school work. I also suggested that 1 or 2 TB would be enough for her with an SSD as the main.

Thanks for the suggestion, I'm sure she will be content with all those parts.
Are there any specific brands or specific parts you would recommend?
post #4 of 7
I've thrown together this build, though forgetting the need to include an O/S I may have under-stated/estimated the price requirements.

This is kind of your "no-overclocking-required-can-handle-everything" build.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/2zDyLk
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/2zDyLk/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4590 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor ($189.99 @ NCIX US)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master RR-HT2-28PK-R1 54.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($16.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-B85M-DS3H Micro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($66.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($81.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M500 120GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($64.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Hitachi Deskstar 7K2000 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.49 @ Amazon)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 970 4GB Twin Frozr V Video Card ($349.99 @ B&H)
Case: Cooler Master N200 MicroATX Mid Tower Case ($54.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: EVGA 500W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($59.99 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($101.98 @ Newegg)

Total: $1026.38
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-10-20 00:40 EDT-0400

If overclocking was on the cards, I would change things around to this to distribute money between other components increasing CPU performance/longevity significantly enough to warrant it. With careful tweaking, performance should be approximately the same in the GPU front while the CPU will have a significant (>25%) advantage. Tweaking definitely required however.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FRPDmG
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/FRPDmG/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4690K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.98 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master RR-T4-18PK-R1 70.0 CFM Rifle Bearing CPU Cooler ($23.32 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z97MX-Gaming 5 Micro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($134.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($81.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M500 120GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($64.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Hitachi Deskstar 7K2000 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.49 @ Amazon)
Video Card: MSI Radeon R9 290 4GB TWIN FROZR Video Card ($270.75 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master N200 MicroATX Mid Tower Case ($54.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: EVGA 600B 600W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($59.98 @ OutletPC)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($101.98 @ Newegg)

Total: $1049.45
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-10-20 00:11 EDT-0400

But if price is of the utmost concern, then I would suggest this build. It sacrifices in GPU strength but not too much else. At 1080p, all of these rigs will perform admirably, but this last one may have to dial back the settings slightly in newer/more-taxing games.:
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3FDyLk
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3FDyLk/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4440 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($174.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master RR-HT2-28PK-R1 54.8 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($16.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-B85M-DS3H Micro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($66.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($81.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial M500 120GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($64.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Hitachi Deskstar 7K2000 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.49 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon R9 280 3GB DUAL-X Video Card ($189.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master N200 MicroATX Mid Tower Case ($44.99 @ Mwave)
Power Supply: EVGA 500W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($47.99 @ NCIX US)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($101.98 @ Newegg)

Total: $827.39
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-10-20 00:15 EDT-0400

The baseline components remain approximately the same, with just a few changes here and there. I have not included a DVD drive as they're becoming optional these days. I suggest getting an external USB one frankly. I barely use my internal one at all, and wish it was a USB drive - I don't even have it plugged in as I need the SATA cables, and have to switch around to use it.

I'm sure someone else will weigh in on the choices I've made, and if you have any questions don't hesitate smile.gif
Edited by willibj - 10/19/14 at 9:40pm
 
PortaPuter
(6 items)
 
 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3210m 2gb Radeon HD7670m DDR3 @ 780mhz/1095mhz 6gb DDR3 1600mhz 500gb HDD 
OSMonitor
Windows 8 64bit 14" Brightview LED (1366x768) 
  hide details  
Reply
 
PortaPuter
(6 items)
 
 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3210m 2gb Radeon HD7670m DDR3 @ 780mhz/1095mhz 6gb DDR3 1600mhz 500gb HDD 
OSMonitor
Windows 8 64bit 14" Brightview LED (1366x768) 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Wow this is great! Thanks for your input! I'll definitely use these as a guideline and way to help my friend.

I'll have her review the first and third build to see if it is something she can manage (which I'm sure she'll be thrilled)
And her original budget was $1,000 so I don't think she would mind going a little over.
post #6 of 7
You're welcome. I've made a slight change to the first build, as the first draft posted missed a CPU difference I thought I had added. The i5-4590 has a significant enough clockspeed increase in turbo over the i5-4440 (3.5-3.7ghz vs. 3.1-3.3ghz) to warrant the extra money, especially in a non-overclock build. Let me know if I can help further smile.gif
 
PortaPuter
(6 items)
 
 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3210m 2gb Radeon HD7670m DDR3 @ 780mhz/1095mhz 6gb DDR3 1600mhz 500gb HDD 
OSMonitor
Windows 8 64bit 14" Brightview LED (1366x768) 
  hide details  
Reply
 
PortaPuter
(6 items)
 
 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3210m 2gb Radeon HD7670m DDR3 @ 780mhz/1095mhz 6gb DDR3 1600mhz 500gb HDD 
OSMonitor
Windows 8 64bit 14" Brightview LED (1366x768) 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 7
PCPartPicker part list: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3zN499
Price breakdown by merchant: http://pcpartpicker.com/p/3zN499/by_merchant/

CPU: Intel Core i5-4690K 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($219.98 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Xigmatek Prime SD1484 90.3 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock Z97 Extreme3 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard ($109.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Team Vulcan 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($70.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Crucial MX100 256GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($109.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($53.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: MSI Radeon R9 290 4GB TWIN FROZR Video Card ($250.75 @ Newegg)
Case: Cooler Master HAF 912 ATX Mid Tower Case ($39.99 @ Micro Center)
Power Supply: XFX 750W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($74.99 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-14 DVD/CD Writer ($13.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8.1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($89.98 @ OutletPC)
Total: $1064.62
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-10-20 09:23 EDT-0400


the r9 290 RIGHT NOW. comes with a free steelseries sibeira v2. and reguarly comes with 3 free games. its almost the same as a 970 GTX by 100usd less
good enough mobo for OC. the heatsink should handle 4.7ghz or so
the case has good airflow but needs extra fans
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