Another spec me thread.

Associate
Joined
21 Sep 2011
Posts
30
Hi,

Just need the cheapest possible upgrade that will get me through my computing days all I need are the following parts Case / Mobo / RAM / CPU. I will not be over clocking this it will have to perform out of the box. The most intensive thing the computer will be used for is playing games on high / ultra settings. Future games such as MW3 / BF3 & then current games such as Black Ops, Crysis 2 and a few others to get me through till then. Will be used for other things but nothing near as demanding.

Budget: £400 but would ideally like to use a lot less.

I already have an ATI 6970, HDD Set up ( 30GB OCZ Vertex SSD + 1TB HDD ), optical drive & 650W PSU that I will throw in so they're not necessary.

I am really looking for the bare minimum that will play games well and then get me through to January where I will see what the Ivybridge offerings look like.
 
Caporegime
Joined
17 Jan 2010
Posts
66,804
Location
weston-super-mare
A lot less?

Your basketProduct Name Qty Price Line Total
Intel Core i3-2100 3.10GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail £94.99
(£79.16) £94.99
(£79.16)
Gigabyte H61M-S2V Intel H61 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard £44.99
(£37.49) £44.99
(£37.49)
BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £32.99
(£27.49) £32.99
(£27.49)
Crucial Ballistix Sport 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 PC3-10666C9 1333MHz Dual Channel Kit (BL2KIT25664BA1339) £21.59
(£17.99) £21.59
(£17.99)
Sub Total : £162.13
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £11.75
VAT is being charged at 20.00% VAT : £34.78
Total : £208.66

The CPU at gaming - http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core-i3-2120-2100_5.html#sect0

But the recommended specs for BF3 say a quad core CPU such as a i5 2400 will be nicer
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core-i5-2500-2400-2300_7.html#sect0

But you say you want to upgrade to Ivybridge so the i3 2100 will be ok till then:)

Are your HDD and optical drive SATA or IDE?

Or maybe you would like a motherboard that has SATA3.0 and USB3.0 and will allow you to overclock a "K" CPU/Ivybridge?
 
Last edited:
Associate
OP
Joined
21 Sep 2011
Posts
30
A lot less?

Your basketProduct Name Qty Price Line Total
Intel Core i3-2100 3.10GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail £94.99
(£79.16) £94.99
(£79.16)
Gigabyte H61M-S2V Intel H61 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard £44.99
(£37.49) £44.99
(£37.49)
BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £32.99
(£27.49) £32.99
(£27.49)
Crucial Ballistix Sport 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 PC3-10666C9 1333MHz Dual Channel Kit (BL2KIT25664BA1339) £21.59
(£17.99) £21.59
(£17.99)
Sub Total : £162.13
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £11.75
VAT is being charged at 20.00% VAT : £34.78
Total : £208.66

The CPU at gaming - http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core-i3-2120-2100_5.html#sect0

But the recommended specs for BF3 say a quad core CPU such as a i5 2400 will be nicer
http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core-i5-2500-2400-2300_7.html#sect0

But you say you want to upgrade to Ivybridge so the i3 2100 will be ok till then:)

Are your HDD and optical drive SATA or IDE?

Or maybe you would like a motherboard that has SATA3.0 and USB3.0 and will allow you to overclock a "K" CPU/Ivybridge?


Both my HDD's are SATA 6GB/S

I would pay another £150 odd to get a bit more oomph out of the machine.

USB 3.0 not too interested in, however SATA 3.0 is the version that takes of 6GB/S right?

I try to avoid over clocking, have fried 2 CPU's that way.
 
Caporegime
Joined
17 Jan 2010
Posts
66,804
Location
weston-super-mare
Ok:)

SATA 3.0 is 6Gb/s, useful for the newer SSD's



Your basketProduct Name Qty Price Line Total
Intel Core i5-2400 3.10GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail £149.99
(£124.99) £149.99
(£124.99)
MSI H67MA-E35 Intel H67 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Micro-ATX Motherboard - (Sandybridge) **B3 REVISION** £61.99
(£51.66) £61.99
(£51.66)
G.Skill RipJaw 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-10666C9 1333MHz Dual Channel Kit £35.99
(£29.99) £35.99
(£29.99)
BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £32.99
(£27.49) £32.99
(£27.49)
Sub Total : £234.13
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £11.75
VAT is being charged at 20.00% VAT : £49.18
Total : £295.06

So thats now a quad core CPU, 8GB RAM and a board with SATA3.0+USB3.0
 
Associate
OP
Joined
21 Sep 2011
Posts
30
Ok:)

SATA 3.0 is 6Gb/s, useful for the newer SSD's



Your basketProduct Name Qty Price Line Total
Intel Core i5-2400 3.10GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail £149.99
(£124.99) £149.99
(£124.99)
MSI H67MA-E35 Intel H67 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Micro-ATX Motherboard - (Sandybridge) **B3 REVISION** £61.99
(£51.66) £61.99
(£51.66)
G.Skill RipJaw 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-10666C9 1333MHz Dual Channel Kit £35.99
(£29.99) £35.99
(£29.99)
BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £32.99
(£27.49) £32.99
(£27.49)
Sub Total : £234.13
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £11.75
VAT is being charged at 20.00% VAT : £49.18
Total : £295.06

So thats now a quad core CPU, 8GB RAM and a board with SATA3.0+USB3.0

Thanks for that :), are you sure that case can fit a 6970 in though? they are pretty huge.
 
Caporegime
Joined
17 Jan 2010
Posts
66,804
Location
weston-super-mare
http://www.bitfenix.com/global/en/products/chassis/merc-alpha

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the maximum clearance for CPU coolers on Merc Alpha and Merc Beta?
Merc Alpha and Merc Beta maximum CPU cooler height = 165mm

Q: What is the maximum clearance for VGA cards on Merc?
Length, PCI-Slot to front panel: 437mm
PCI-Slots to HDD-Cage (effective maximum VGA card length): 320mm

So 320mm/12.5" to the HDD cages.

The case could also do with maybe a extra 120mm fan at the front - http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=FG-010-CM&groupid=701&catid=57&subcat=4


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rn1OAVspqvM
 
Associate
OP
Joined
21 Sep 2011
Posts
30

Thanks for the help so far, would it be worth getting the i5 2500k? it's a bit more and it does have the ability to overclock quite well on air which could draw out a few more FPS in games and would still be under £400.
 
Caporegime
Joined
17 Jan 2010
Posts
66,804
Location
weston-super-mare
You will also need a P67/Z68 board to also overclock. And then 1600MHz RAM comes in to play as these chipsets can use it.


Your basket
Product Name Qty Price Line Total
Intel Core i5-2500K 3.30GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail with FREE TrackMania 2 Canyon PC Game £161.99
(£134.99) £161.99
(£134.99)
Gigabyte Z68AP-D3 Intel Z68 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard £85.98
(£71.65) £85.98
(£71.65)
Kingston HyperX Genesis Grey 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800C9 1600MHz Dual Channel Kit (KHX1600C9D3X2K2/8GX) £45.59
(£37.99) £45.59
(£37.99)
BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £32.99
(£27.49) £32.99
(£27.49)
Sub Total : £272.12
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £11.75
VAT is being charged at 20.00% VAT : £56.77
Total : £340.64


• Z68 motherboard has SSD caching, Lucid virtu+Quicksync, it also overclocks extremely well for its price point - http://www.kitguru.net/components/m...-z68ap-d3-z68-review-bargain-buy-of-the-year/

• The stock intel cooler is good for around 4GHz± a bit, it seems the motherboard is capable of more, so a aftermarket heatsink such as a Coolermaster Hyper212+/Gelid tranquillo will be good for about 4.5GHz.
 
Associate
OP
Joined
21 Sep 2011
Posts
30
You will also need a P67/Z68 board to also overclock. And then 1600MHz RAM comes in to play as these chipsets can use it.


Your basket
Product Name Qty Price Line Total
Intel Core i5-2500K 3.30GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail with FREE TrackMania 2 Canyon PC Game £161.99
(£134.99) £161.99
(£134.99)
Gigabyte Z68AP-D3 Intel Z68 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard £85.98
(£71.65) £85.98
(£71.65)
Kingston HyperX Genesis Grey 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800C9 1600MHz Dual Channel Kit (KHX1600C9D3X2K2/8GX) £45.59
(£37.99) £45.59
(£37.99)
BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £32.99
(£27.49) £32.99
(£27.49)
Sub Total : £272.12
Shipping cost assumes delivery to UK Mainland with:
DPD Next Day Parcel
(This can be changed during checkout) Shipping : £11.75
VAT is being charged at 20.00% VAT : £56.77
Total : £340.64


• Z68 motherboard has SSD caching, Lucid virtu+Quicksync, it also overclocks extremely well for its price point - http://www.kitguru.net/components/m...-z68ap-d3-z68-review-bargain-buy-of-the-year/

• The stock intel cooler is good for around 4GHz± a bit, it seems the motherboard is capable of more, so a aftermarket heatsink such as a Coolermaster Hyper212+/Gelid tranquillo will be good for about 4.5GHz.

I think Lucid virtu is for power savings, what is Quicksync? I have been given good reviews for the Gelid Tranquillo I may give that a try.
 
Caporegime
Joined
17 Jan 2010
Posts
66,804
Location
weston-super-mare
Quicksync is also part of Lucid, it enables certain programs (media espresso for instance) to use the onboard GPU core of the CPU's to speed up encoding times.

A graphics core is much faster at this sort of thing compared to a CPU core. Nvidia have something called CUDA that is very similar in the way it can dramatically speed up rendering/encoding times compared to just the CPU.
 
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