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Low-Budget gamer: First Build

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi! I'm new here but plan to begin taking part in your experiments

First, thanks from everyone who googles computer parts: You info is quite useful!

I plan to build a computer, but I'm completely new to high-end components, and I always buy mainstream computers so... I need your help!
After hours of research, I decided to go with this. I was wondering if this configuration seems ok for a skilled overclock.net-er before I buy!

-Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2GHZ Black Edition or AMD Phenom II X2 560 3.3GHz, Black Edition... I want to unlock, is it a good idea? Good chances of succes? there's only $60 difference so...
-Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3, for the turbo, core unlocker, USB3 SATA6 and all those unclocking features!
-RAM: Kingston 8GB DDR3 1333MHZ
-WD Caviarâ„¢ Blue 500GB SATA 6.0GB/s HDD
-XFX Radeon HD 5770 1GB DDR5

And then for the case, I wondered if I had to buy a Haf 922 from cooler master and a 750W Power supply like the TRX-750M from Thermaltake or if the Thermaltake V3 with 450W PSU would do the job for the next 3 years (I'm a student, so I need to keep my money!). I dont give prices because I need to have the assembly made in Quebec province to get my student loan from the government, so it's not as cheap as it can be... let's say it's around $590-$770 (depending of the case/PSU, $180 difference) without Windows 7 home premium 64 bits/assembly.

My goal is to play videogames but not online, so I don't need that very 69th frame/s to frag all my opponents... But I need to be able to play recent games on a 22" screen with mid-quality. The obvious questions are: Is it a good idea to try and unlock cores? Does the case/psu combo will be enough to power and cool down this config, once overclocked? Will 8GB of RAM will be bottle-necked by another component, may I buy only 4GB? Will most of the parts will be useful in another build in 4-5 years? Keep in mind that for now, I have a low budget.

My thanks to all of you, even those who won't respond: You forum already helped me much with the search for these components!

Oh and sorry for my bad English, but since I french-canadian...
post #2 of 14
Thread Starter 
Oh and I did forgot to ask: Since I won't need all of those USB2.0 ports, is it a good ide to permanently attach 1 or 2 x1GB USB key to use the "readyboost" of Windows??? It seems quite successful with my current laptop...
post #3 of 14
I'm going to get the jump on most people here.

xd would say "Argggg generic RAM", go for 1600 ram as there is probably better ram out there for cheaper.

most other ocner's would say "8GB of RAM is overkill".... for just gaming 4 GBs should be enough. I even do some video stuff and 4GBs works for me.

unlocking CPUs is not a guaranteed thing. I would go for the sure bet and get the x4 and then see if it can go up to a X6..... Also most people on here would say go for a Samsung Spinpoint F3....probably just a few bucks more 2x the storage.

I will also jump the gun here and say get a better PSU.... something from Antec, Corsair, or SeaSonic.
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post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkmonk View Post

-Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2GHZ Black Edition or AMD Phenom II X2 560 3.3GHz, Black Edition... I want to unlock, is it a good idea? Good chances of succes? there's only $60 difference so...
-Motherboard: ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3, for the turbo, core unlocker, USB3 SATA6 and all those unclocking features!
-RAM: Kingston 8GB DDR3 1333MHZ
-WD Caviar™ Blue 500GB SATA 6.0GB/s HDD
-XFX Radeon HD 5770 1GB DDR5

And then for the case, I wondered if I had to buy a Haf 922 from cooler master and a 750W Power supply like the TRX-750M from Thermaltake or if the Thermaltake V3 with 450W PSU would do the job for the next 3 years (I'm a student, so I need to keep my money!). I dont give prices because I need to have the assembly made in Quebec province to get my student loan from the government, so it's not as cheap as it can be... let's say it's around $590-$770 (depending of the case/PSU, $180 difference) without Windows 7 home premium 64 bits/assembly.
hi , my advice would be
955 BE without any risks
cheaper mobo , there are plenty of options , good would be crossfire x8x8 support and 8+2 power phase with heatsinks on VRMs
WD Blue 500GB sata2 not sata3 since there is no difference aside from 20$ !
4Gb Kingston ram 1600Mhz
XFX/HIS 5770 (JuniperXT)
PSU Antec/Corsair/Seasonic/XFX 500w 650w if u plan to CF later , never ever take thermaltake PSUs
Case - get the cheapest one u can , with bottom mounted PSU and decent cable managment
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post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Alright, I'm taking notes here, thanks guys, I'll drop that X2 idea, specially since the low cost difference... 955 BE are locked X6??? Wow, didn't knew that one! Il go for it! And even if it's not
For the RAM, alright, I'll go with 4GB of DDR3 1666MHz, same brand
And of course the video card is a good one.
And I'll go with sata2, if you say so, I wasn't too much into that sata3 idea but the guy at the store said it was a good choice... reason why I wanted to ask you guys! I can't have a samsung spinpoint since the choice is limited in a single store (that nasty government!) but I'll look for sata2... 7 200 rpm, of course!
The case will be a HAF, 922 or 912+ (I know, I've been had by the looks of it, but it's damn pretty!) because I can't find a decent-looking combo with a bottom-mounted psu... and an HAF912 +psu is still the same price as a Sonata III 500 at this store...
Those options are locked down from now on... with your help! I'm sure it's a strong combo, especially for the price.
Again, I am bound by some rules


For the remaining (Psu & mobo):
-What's the matter with thermaltake? And does the same apply for cooler master and ocz's psu, which are my 2 others cheap choices for 600w? I thought the thermaltake was a good choice
http://hi-techreviews.com/index.php/...review?start=6
But with all the info out there, it's easy to get confused by a single review...
If you can explain to me why, then I'll spend that extra money on the the TX650W from Corsair, which I know to be a great choice from past posts.

-And for that damn mobo: Man, I'm out of ideas. The mtfkn amd website asn't been updated in ages and no traces of any 8xx chipset can be found on the main site... Need a 890 to Crossfire, but still, nobody knows if I'll find another 5770 in 3-4 years... I thought ASUS was a good idea with all those easy-overclock, Mem-ok, core unlocker, nameit-features, but a CrossfireX-ready mobo from them at low cost is hard to find. Then is the M4A89GTD PRO/USB3 (I really want to be USB3/Sata3 ready) is a good option? 600Wpsu, I'm ready to crossfire... Or if not, I'm open to any suggestion: That's the most complicated thing for the PC... And the main reason why I have to rely on you guys!
Maybe you'd like to see the choice I have at the cheapest store I found, where I'll buy my stuff? www.pczone.com
Just look for mobos, everything else is already covered, I don't want to take your much valuable time.
Anyway, I'll go get some sleep and maybe will find a perfect mobo falling down from heaven tomorrow!
post #6 of 14
if you want a solid system, don't skimp on the psu. first build had a cheap-o $25 psu. kept me at 3.2ghz. after buying a relatively innexpensive ocz i was able to reach 4.0ghz. not really sure about thermaltake psu's. just be sure to read reviews that give info about quailty of the power output of the psu. many places just say "it worked so it must be a good psu." here is a link that explains testing psu and psu quality:
http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/artic...re-Wrong/410/5

do your homework and you should be fine. just my 2cents.
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post #7 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by OolerTheInventor View Post
unlocking CPUs is not a guaranteed thing. I would go for the sure bet and get the x4 and then see if it can go up to a X6.....
Unfortunately only Phenoms designated with a "T" (such as the 960T) can be unlocked to X6's, but those are only offered oem to pc manufacturers. Of course you might be able to find them on ebay, however that wouldn't help if you need to get your parts from Quebec.

Have you considered the Phenom II X4 840? The performance gain with L3 cache is at most 10%, but in most cases minimal.

I agree with that 4gb would be plenty and you'd probably want to go with 1600, I think CL8 is pretty inexpensive these days. Check out Mushkin or Gskill as they tend to be reasonable.

Power supplies are critical. Check out the thermaltake.com power supply calculator to find out exactly how much you need. Then go for something 80 Plus certified and if you can afford it go for Seasonic or Corsair.

I hope that helps!
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post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
With the great link of Bartoon, I was able to find this:
Thermaltake=bad power supply (noise and ripples may damage your components)
Cooler Master=same thing apply, and you must substract 150W from their labels
The PSU I was looking for was going to destroy my computer and was in your very article, Bartoon!

And I found out that the OCZ StealthXStream 600 W is in fact a disguised OCZ GameXstream 700 W or Zalman ZM600-HP, less the modular, and delivers 735W without noise or ripples at 80 or plus efficiency. And has limited connectivity, but it won't bother me for the next few years. Cheap, efficient, silent, powerful. Everything you could ask for, except modular.

So I write the new, final specs (Like I said I can't even assemble the pc myself so I'm very limited)
-Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2GHZ Black Edition
- RAM: Kingston 4GB DDR3 1666MHZ
- XFX Radeon HD 5770 1GB DDR5
- psu OCZ StealthXStream 600 W
- HAF 912 plus case
- Western Digital Blue, sata2 500GB since I can't find any samsung spinpoint there... might try a special order...
The above is final, you gave me enough answers and I don't want to "leech" you attention.

But then what of the mobo, you ask... well, Asus M4A89GTD PRO/USB3??? Any cheaper/better ideas?
3 criterion:
- 2x8 pcie for a future crossfirex
- sata3/usb3 ready
- easy overclocking

PS: For a low-mid budget, this config will
post #9 of 14
Get DDR3-1600. Tons of kits at same price.
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkmonk View Post
With the great link of Bartoon, I was able to find this:
Thermaltake=bad power supply (noise and ripples may damage your components)
Cooler Master=same thing apply, and you must substract 150W from their labels
The PSU I was looking for was going to destroy my computer and was in your very article, Bartoon!

And I found out that the OCZ StealthXStream 600 W is in fact a disguised OCZ GameXstream 700 W or Zalman ZM600-HP, less the modular, and delivers 735W without noise or ripples at 80 or plus efficiency. And has limited connectivity, but it won't bother me for the next few years. Cheap, efficient, silent, powerful. Everything you could ask for, except modular.

So I write the new, final specs (Like I said I can't even assemble the pc myself so I'm very limited)
-Processor: AMD Phenom II X4 955 3.2GHZ Black Edition
- RAM: Kingston 4GB DDR3 1666MHZ
- XFX Radeon HD 5770 1GB DDR5
- psu OCZ StealthXStream 600 W
- HAF 912 plus case
- Western Digital Blue, sata2 500GB since I can't find any samsung spinpoint there... might try a special order...
The above is final, you gave me enough answers and I don't want to "leech" you attention.

But then what of the mobo, you ask... well, Asus M4A89GTD PRO/USB3??? Any cheaper/better ideas?
3 criterion:
- 2x8 pcie for a future crossfirex
- sata3/usb3 ready
- easy overclocking

PS: For a low-mid budget, this config will
if ur not gonna crossfire any time soon i would recommend getting a 430-500w Antec \\ Corsair \\ Seasonic PSU they are very future proof
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