Help with new technology.

TGV

TGV

Associate
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
Hi – I’m a new guy here, so apologies if I’ve put this in the wrong place or made some other rookie mistake. Also, I'm sorry if you get a million of these requests every day.

I’ve been looking at a few forums online and this one looked like it had the potential for the best feedback because I’m looking for some advice. I should say that I may be a rookie here, but I’m not a beginner at building computers. I have built many machines for myself, family and friends over the years, but the last machine I built was about 10 years ago. It was then state of the art with a P4 3.0GHz processor, 200Gb HDD and a 512Mb graphics card. If you consider that the whole thing came to just over £1,000, you’ll realise how long ago that really was.

Anyway, my reason for appearing here was that in those 10 years, I’ve been married, had kids and all that kind of thing and I’ve just bought laptops because it’s suited what I needed. I’m thinking that now things have settled down, I feel like building a computer again to play games in my spare time.

I’m looking to build something that is competent with games, but not cutting edge and expensive. Something with enough grunt to keep me happy with decent frame rates of 24+ on 1920x1080 resolutions (on a single monitor, old fashioned 2D!). However, my problem is that since I last looked into what is available about 10 years ago, things have move on a lot. Processors have grown extra cores (yet clock speeds haven’t changed much at all), windows has developed another 32 bits, RAM is cheaper (per Mb/Gb) than ever and now one can have a HDD that doesn’t spin. These were all either unheard of or very rare when I last built a machine.

So here’s my first question to anyone who cares to help: Is there anything in particular I should be mindful of? Or for that matter, anything I should avoid? Any basic mistakes that are easily made with dual/quad core processors etc…? Or is it all pretty much the same as always but with bigger-better-faster-more, everywhere?

I have a budget for the machine (excluding monitor, keys and mouse etc… which I already have) of around £600. As I said, I want the thing to run at 1920x1080 native without struggling with a medium to high(ish) level of detail. The games I have at present are Fallout New Vegas and Railworks Train simulator 2012. I have a history of liking FPS games (such as the Ghost Recon/Rainbow Six/CoD type things) so I’ll probably end up investing in one of those. This is the kind of thing I’d like to run. I’ll say again that I’m not interested in benchmarking hundreds of fps – as long as it looks smooth, I’m happy.

My initial trawl on the web (using ****** prices), I put together this:
Motherboard - ASUS P8Z68-V LX Socket 1155
Processor - Inter core i5 2500K 3.3GHz socket 1155 6MB
Graphics - Asus GTX 550Ti 1Gb GDDR5 VGA PC-E
RAM - G-skill 8Gb (2x4Gb) DDR3 1600MHz Ripjaws Memory kit
HDD - 500Gb Seagate 3.5" 6Gb/s
DVD drive - LiteOn iHAS124 24x DVD+-RW
Windows - Win 7 pro 64 bit
Case - Coolermaster Elite 330 with 500W PSU

That lot came to £599. Am I kidding myself? Am I way off, or pretty close with just a few things needing tweaking? I don’t need huge storage – I have a 1Tb external drive for photos, videos, etc…

Help appreciated. Cheers.
 
Soldato
Joined
10 Aug 2010
Posts
5,499
Cheaper option [i3 is enough for gaming with a 6850, and you can always put an i5 2500K or similar in later if you want an upgrade :)]


YOUR BASKET
1 x Intel Core i3-2120 3.30GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail £99.95
1 x Gigabyte Z77-D3H Intel Z77 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard £84.98
1 x Asus HD 6850 DirectCU V2 1024MB GDDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card £84.95
1 x Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-Bit - OEM (GFC-02050) £79.98
1 x Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB SATA 6Gb/s 16MB Cache - OEM (ST500DM002) £58.99
1 x XFX Pro 450W Core Edition '80 Plus Bronze' Power Supply £41.99
1 x Corsair Vengeance Low Profile 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800C9 1600MHz Dual Channel Kit (CML8GX3M2A1600C9) £39.95
1 x BitFenix Merc Beta Gaming Case - Black £29.99
1 x OcUK 22x DVD±RW SATA ReWriter (Black) - OEM £17.99
Total : £560.18 (includes shipping : £17.85).



Some notes on what you chose:
  • Z77 boards are out fairly recently, so (as they're not more expensive) they're a better bet than Z68
  • i5 2500K, great CPU for gaming and overclocks well!
  • GTX 550Ti, not a great gaming GPU a GTX460 or 6850 are better for similar price
  • PSUs that come with cases generally are worth avoiding, you'll soon learn around here that skimping on a PSU is not a good idea :p
 
Last edited:

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
Warecast - thanks for that list - it looks like a real improvement on my list for only a few extra quid.

beejjacobs - that's great advice. Just what I was looking for thanks. I think I will stick with the i5 because I have heard great things about it (is an i7 not worth the extra?), and try and stretch to the GTX460 and the PSU and case recommended.

Finally - I have a laptop to sell. Where is the best place to advertise it? eBay, locally or some other place?

Thanks for your help.
 
Soldato
Joined
1 Apr 2009
Posts
9,952
I would not use a CX430W with a graphics card, it's too weak imo.

i7 not worth the extra for gaming and general usage. i7 good if you do lots of multi-threaded tasks.

If you are considering a i7, I would kee a i5 and spend the difference towards better overall components (case, PSU, GPU, although GPUs will need too big of a step up to make a difference, like a 7850). The 6850 is a good card, up to £120 range.
 

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
Thanks Olivier. Agreed - I think the money would be more noted on a better card (and PSU I guess) rather than blowing the majority of my budget on an i7.

I can see the plan coming together... I nearly bought a copy of Computer Shopper at King's Cross today on the way home, but coming here has taught me more in less time and saved me £4.99 in the process. Result.
 
Soldato
Joined
10 Aug 2010
Posts
5,499
Thanks Olivier. Agreed - I think the money would be more noted on a better card (and PSU I guess) rather than blowing the majority of my budget on an i7.

I can see the plan coming together... I nearly bought a copy of Computer Shopper at King's Cross today on the way home, but coming here has taught me more in less time and saved me £4.99 in the process. Result.

Excellent :) Glad I could help!

Just a note on the GTX460, they are great GPUs [I have one] and I do prefer Nvidia, but the 6850 can't be beaten for value at ~£85, really a steal! You might be able to find a 460 cheaper elsewhere, or second hand.

As far as the laptop, I really don't like that auction site at the moment [shouldn't mention competitors] so I'd advertise locally. The forum has a Member's Market for such things but you need to have 1000 posts and be registered for 180 days to have access - sounds a lot but it doesn't take long :p

Let us know what you go for, and remember weekly deals change on Wednesday so if you don't order tomorrow be sure to check back as the suggestions for what to buy will most likely change a bit :)
 

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
Thanks. Will do. I need the cash from the laptop sale to complete the budget. I wasn't aware of house rules but cheers for the heads up. I have advertised it locally. It should sell as it is a nice spec. Fingers crossed.
 
Soldato
Joined
10 Aug 2010
Posts
5,499
Thanks. Will do. I need the cash from the laptop sale to complete the budget. I wasn't aware of house rules but cheers for the heads up. I have advertised it locally. It should sell as it is a nice spec. Fingers crossed.

Cool, let us know how you get on. Also if it'll be a while before you buy make sure you check back as their may be new products as well as just weekly deals :)
 

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
beejjacobs - I have a list now.... how do you post the basket on here like you did up there? Here is the basic text list of what I'm about to order (all from this site):


Intel Core i5-2500K 3.30GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - OEM

Asus VE228H 22" Widescreen LED Multimedia Monitor - Black

Asus HD 6850 DirectCU V2 1024MB GDDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card

Asus P8Z77-V LX Intel Z77 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-Bit - OEM (GFC-02050)

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB SATA 6Gb/s 16MB Cache - OEM (ST500DM002)

Kingston HyperX Genesis Grey 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800C9 1600MHz Dual Channel Kit (KHX1600C9D3X2K2/8GX)

Cooler Master Elite Power 500W Power Supply

BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black

Samsung SH-S222BB/RSMS 22x DVD±RW SATA ReWriter (Black) - Retail

Have I made any basic ****-ups there?!!
 
Associate
Joined
26 Dec 2009
Posts
834
Location
Norwich
looks good, a few issues:

power supply? 500w? its enough, but no growing room.

the end of the month Ivybridge is coming out id wait and see how much these new chips are, and if they will drive prices down ( doubt it).

small SSD? for general usage and instant application startups?

6850, its alright, not as good as the 5850 / 5870 . get a 7series?

apart from that its not bad.
 

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
Cheers - what about a CPU cooler? Does the i5 come with a basic one included? Is it worth investing £20-£30 in something with copper tubes, for example?
 
Soldato
Joined
24 Jul 2003
Posts
3,158
Location
South East Coast
I would thorougly recommend getting at least a 7850 to go with your i5, otherwise the CPU will be limted by 6850. The VFX 7850 is on Today Only at £173.99.

Possibly save some money on the RAM:

http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=MY-307-CS&groupid=701&catid=8&subcat=1517

And unless you particularly want SLI this motherboard comes very well recommended on these forums:

http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=MB-391-GI&groupid=701&catid=5&subcat=2261

And saves you £25 in total.

I have been researching here for 2 weeks and have ordered the motherboard, case, RAM etc I am just waiting to order the 7850 and i5 monday when I get paid!

I want to play a few odd games but like to them to look nice and run smoothly at 1080p and the 7850 really was the minimum. If your willing to overclock a little (and I was against at first, its all software based in windows, reboot and its back to stock etc) then it performs close to the £300 cards.

Feel free to choose yourself of course and have fun with it!
 
Soldato
Joined
10 Aug 2010
Posts
5,499
Cheers - what about a CPU cooler? Does the i5 come with a basic one included? Is it worth investing £20-£30 in something with copper tubes, for example?
The retail version would come with a stock cooler, another cooler at that price would get you a decent overclock :)

A cooler like that would get you 4.5Ghz or so, here's what I'd get:


YOUR BASKET
1 x Intel Core i5-2500K 3.30GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - Retail £161.99
1 x Asus VH242H 24" Widescreen LCD Multimedia Monitor - Black £131.99
1 x OcUK HD 6850 OC 1024MB GDDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card £99.95
1 x Gigabyte Z77-D3H Intel Z77 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard £80.40
1 x Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-Bit - OEM (GFC-02050) £72.00
1 x Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB SATA 6Gb/s 16MB Cache - OEM (ST500DM002) £61.99
1 x Cooler Master Silent Pro Modular 600W '80 Plus Bronze' Power Supply £54.98
1 x Corsair Vengeance Low Profile 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800C9 1600MHz Dual Channel Kit (CML8GX3M2A1600C9) £39.95
1 x BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black £29.99
1 x Akasa AK-CC4007EP01 Nero 3 CPU Cooler (Socket LGA775/1155/1156/1366/2011/AMD AM2/AM2+/AM3/FM1) £21.98
1 x LG GH22NS70 24x DVD±RW SATA ReWriter (Black) - OEM £18.98
Total : £798.32 (includes shipping : £20.10).


This includes a modular PSU [as it's on offer] which gives you a bit more headroom, and helps with cable management :)

Basket list thing, see here.
 
Last edited:

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
If it hasn't been said before by someone else: Awesome. Thanks to you all. I can't believe people still go to PC World for advice when there is a resource like this on the net. Credit card is out and as long as delivery is on time, I have me a computer to build at the weekend. First time in many years; I'm quite excited. Thanks all.
 
Soldato
Joined
10 Aug 2010
Posts
5,499
If it hasn't been said before by someone else: Awesome. Thanks to you all. I can't believe people still go to PC World for advice when there is a resource like this on the net. Credit card is out and as long as delivery is on time, I have me a computer to build at the weekend. First time in many years; I'm quite excited. Thanks all.

You're most welcome :) We all enjoy it!

What you going for in the end?
 
Soldato
Joined
1 Apr 2009
Posts
9,952
If it hasn't been said before by someone else: Awesome. Thanks to you all. I can't believe people still go to PC World for advice when there is a resource like this on the net. Credit card is out and as long as delivery is on time, I have me a computer to build at the weekend. First time in many years; I'm quite excited. Thanks all.

if you haven't seen those videos



But you can always come back here if you need advice.
 

TGV

TGV

Associate
OP
Joined
16 Apr 2012
Posts
20
I carefully reviewed all your advice and options, but with a (relatively) strict budget of £750 including a 1080 monitor, I have just ordered this lot from here to be delivered tomorrow:

Intel Core i5-2500K 3.30GHz (Sandybridge) Socket LGA1155 Processor - OEM

Asus VE228H 22" Widescreen LED Multimedia Monitor - Black

Asus HD 6850 DirectCU V2 1024MB GDDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card

Gigabyte Z77-D3H Intel Z77 (Socket 1155) DDR3 Motherboard

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-Bit - OEM (GFC-02050)

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB SATA 6Gb/s 16MB Cache - OEM (ST500DM002)

Corsair Vengeance Low Profile 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 PC3-12800C9 1600MHz Dual Channel Kit (CML8GX3M2A1600C9)

Cooler Master Elite Power 500W Power Supply

BitFenix Merc Alpha Gaming Case - Black

Xigmatek Gaia CPU Cooler (Socket LGA775/1155/1156/1366/2011/AM2/AM3/FM1)

Samsung SH-S222BB/RSMS 22x DVD±RW SATA ReWriter (Black/Silver/Biege) - Retail

2 x Zalman ZM-F3 120mm Silent Case Fan - 3 Pin

TOTAL = £766 (inc. delivery).

So I'm pretty pleased with that. As I said at the top, I'm coming off using a laptop for years, so OK, perhaps there is scope for improvement in this rig, but at least I now have that option which I didn't have before with the laptop.

I have gone for extra case fans and a CPU cooler because I intend on playing around with some overclocking.

Thanks again to y'all. I owe you a beer.
 
Top Bottom