Building a PC, requesting help.

I’ve disappeared again as some people might notice but this time was out of my control. My computer decided to be an ass and blue screen me to death. But anyways I’ve saved up some money and decided it’s time to build my own gaming PC. But, I don’t have a clue on anything parts related. So I’d like you guys to help me with that. Here’s a rough list of things that could help you guys assist me.

  1. I have 600 dollars to play with, and if desperately required I can go up to 800.
  2. I live in USA.
  3. I already have the following parts so these can be excluded from your parts listing and pricing.

[ul][li]Nvidia GTX 550 Ti card.[/li]
[li]CD/DVD drive that can rip/burn cds and dvds.[/li]
[li]A monitor.[/li]
[li]Keyboard and mouse.[/li]
[li]Unreliable hard drive[/li][/ul]

I’m posting this from my phone so if it looks sloppy feel free to clean it up. Kyle suggested I look at the wattage of my old power supply so I will update with that info when I get around to disassembling my old PC. Right now it’s late and I’m tired.

So besides the parts I’ve listed, I’ll need everything that makes a PC run. Motherboard, CPU, hard drive, case, power supply, etc.

Kyle here, but Nek wanted to express that he would be grateful for any help here. Also edited slightly.

$65 IN WIN GT1 Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Case
$80 MSI 970A-G46 AM3+ AMD 970 Motherboard
$100 AMD FX-4100 Zambezi 3.6GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) Socket AM3+ 95W Quad-Core CPU
$90 Western Digital WD AV-GP WD10EURX 1TB HDD
$90 SeaSonic M12II 620 Bronze 620W PSU(Powersupply)
$75 CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB) RAM
$100 Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit - OEM OS


Then add in your mouse, keyboard, monitor, etc.

Honestly, just throwing it out there, but the Windows 8 64 bit is not bad at all either, it is what my current Laptop is running on, and there are only a few things that are ass backwards to me. im not sure on the price, but it is a nice OS to run on.

Ive got nothing against Win8 - but its 20 bucks more expensive, and he said $600.

Yeye. I got this.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i3-3210 3.2GHz Dual-Core Processor ($109.10 @ TigerDirect)
Motherboard: ASRock H77M Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Memory: Crucial Ballistix Sport 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($52.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: A-Data Premier Pro SP900 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($64.98 @ Outlet PC)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair CX 600W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($63.98 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 (OEM) (64-bit) ($88.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $580.00
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-06-28 13:37 EDT-0400)


CPU: Intel is better for the price. I own it.
Motherboard: I own it. It’s small but it works.
RAM: It’s cheap. Decent brand.
HDD: Western Digital is solid.
SSD: It’s an SSD. Things go fast.
Case: Corsair is a good brand.
PSU: Corsair is a good brand (story below)
OS: It’s cheaper than Win7.

Though if you do want to take the SSD out for say a faster CPU that could benefit you as well. Depends what you are going for.

Story of Corsair. So two of my friends recently built PC’s, both for right around the price Nek has. Maybe a bit more. One of them recently had a power surge, and it fried his computer. He contacted Corsair and they said they would test his computer to see what specifically was wrong, then give him a check for the broken stuff, and back the stuff that worked. They gave him $700 back. He spent less than that originally. Not to mention they also sent him RAM, as well as a new PSU. So a huge savings. He is now ordering parts that are quite a lot faster than what he originally built with. So yea that’s cool.

Im not a 100% sure about CPUs, but from what ive heard in the Cell Phone business is that Snap Dragon has much better processeing power than AMD/ Intel… once again, not sure if its only for mobile devices, but ive heard good things.

That relates none. A ‘Snapdragon’ CPU is an ARM based CPU made by Qualcomm, Intel has just begun to make CPU’s for mobile, and AMD is not even in the market yet. I believe there is only 1 Intel based device sold by a carrier in the US, however there are multiple in the UK. Well I suppose I should say it relates some, but not for desktop use. There are ARM based Win8 computers, but they are somewhat limited (Surface non-pro). ARM based CPU’s run at much lower power, but also sacrifice much of the performance found in today’s modern CPU’s. Though ARM is the wave of the future and they are continually getting better.

But for x86 computing (read: desktop), Intel is by far the king. AMD’s high-end cannot touch Intel’s high-end. Hell my lowly i3 beats most of AMD’s lineup.

Sorry for the OTness

But they’re pretty much the same thing with a different name on it. Seriously, neither has ever majorly out-competed the other.

It’s not the name of AMD or Intel, its the actual motherboard/graphics card that counts.

Wrong. There is actually a pretty big difference. They are not just “renames” at all. Sure they are both CPU’s but they are both independently developed with huge price differences, and performance differences as well. They trade spots all the time. Back before the Dual-Core AMD dominated Intel. Everyone knew it.

I would also like to note that I don’t particularly think the motherboard is that important. Why? Well I have owned a $300 motherboard, and a $70 motherboard. Guess what, the $70 beats the $300 in my book. It has all the features I need for less than a 1/3 of the price. The performance difference between motherboards is very very minimal, most of the time completely unnoticeable. However graphics are important, but that is similar to AMD/Intel, you have to look at benchmarks.

Major difference. Those are both of the “high-ends”. The gap is huge. Generally around 25%, more or less depending. And you will see the difference, even if you aren’t doing those particular tasks.

As for a relevant comparison:

I chose the Intel, because for the most part it beats out the AMD. They do trade spots a few times though, and the Intel is a MUCH more efficient CPU architecture, which is shown by the single-threaded benchmarks.

I don’t mean to be an ass here, I really just don’t want misinformation. There are differences.

Also if you want to stream, the AMD may be a better choice. I can stream off the i3, in 720, but of a lower quality stream, atleast while trying to maintain 150fps in game (CS:GO, not hard to do). An even better CPU for streaming is an i5 by far, those things tackle streams well.

Just so you guys know, I’m not looking for a super high end PC. I want something that can play majority of games on mid-hi to high settings.

I appreciate your guys help.

Both of the builds above accomplish that

Im sorry, but Sip, you Techy-Otakuness made me smile today. faith in humanity is restored. i also felt like this while reading all this:

Knowing is half the Battle

Okay so I got 2 different lists. I’m not sure which is the better one. I managed to get on a laptop and I have tomorrow off to go through a bunch of parts and buy them.

Ill update this post once I get a look at my old power supply. I’m salvaging my CD drive so if I can get a power supply that matches up that would be extremely helpful.

Also, I fucking detest Windows 8 so I’ll probably stick with 7. If I could get on my old computer and burn a pirated copy (Huehue) this would be nice and cheap.

I am sad that you did not already burn that copy you had in case this happened. You can still access it if you can hook up your hard drive to another computer than can burn it. Would save you about $80-$100. Of course you use a legal key after as we don’t support pirated anything. This would just save you the trouble of getting a disk.

Sip, I do prefer your build as it includes a solid state and intel. He may be able to do better on CPU, but that is a very good one. Was surprised by the benchmarks you showed as the spec’s should have favored AMD.

I always prefer full towers as it leave me more options later on. Also, do you think we need to consider a new fan for the CPU? I know my default one was crap and I needed to buy a $50 good one for cooling.

New information. Nek found that his power supply is a 400 watt one. I did calculations here: using Sip’s suggested build. The results show he needs 312 Watts as recommended and a minimum of 262.

I believe he can get away without an new power supply. We already know it works with his video card.

Like I said, I’m going COMPLETELY from scratch with some exceptions. I won’t have any cooling fans if no one suggests them. I’m going in blind and trusting you guys with my money. I seriously need a new PC and you guys are kind of my hope on this. I do appreciate everyone keeping the cost close/under 600 but remember I can go up to 800 if the parts are essential enough. It just might take me a week to get paid and contribute that check to my new PC fund.


I’d rather get a new power supply anyways. I think at one point when my computer was acting up, you believed it to be my power supply. I’m pretty sure I need a new one anyways as the primary plugin to the motherboard is kind of a bitch to plugin and pull out. So a new one will help.

Also, I’d like to point out that I don’t need an OS to purchase. I have my Vista CD with me still and if I ever feel like upgrading I can do so. So for the sake of spending 100 bucks on better parts, don’t include an Operating System.

I’m about to go with Sip’s suggestions for parts but I’d like to wait for him to make any other suggestions/improvements. Not including an OS should save me 100 dollars to spend on better parts so Sip, if you have any suggestions or improvements on parts I’d be grateful if you’d post them.

We should talk in Teamspeak sometime when I get a chance to go on a laptop. I’d like to hear your opinions personally.

This should suit you pretty well. I’ll try to get on teamspeak to maybe hone things down a bit. Anytime I’m on my desktop I’ll jump on.

I’ve bought everything on that list except everything from NewEgg as I have a question on one of the items.

In your list, the CPU Cooler page says a newer version of it is available for basically 15 dollars more with rebate. Any reason why I should opt for the older version instead of the newer one? I can afford to spend 15 more on it if it’s truly superior.

Also, to what extent do I need to do maintenance on my rig once I get it up and running? Like, do I have to tinker inside once a month and make sure dust isn’t clogging up shit? Anything else besides dust I should maintain?

Oh and one more thing, can anyone recommend me some good cost-effective speakers? Preferrably speakers that aren’t USB. I have 2 but both are eh… problematic in some departments.

One of them plugs into the USB and for no reason stops audio on the left speaker after awhile. It fixes itself when I toggle the audio on my computer but the fact it does it is annoying. Also, hitting the volume or mute button on it affects my computers volume and mute settings. I’d rather have my computer and speakers have their own volume settings.

The other works just fine and all, but it’s extremely old… Like 10 years old and I’m not even joking either. It’s more like 12 years old as I’ve had them ever since my parents bought our first family computer (With old school ass dial-up connection). It has a bass setting which is pretty nice but it’s so old to the point I have to crank the volume up on the speaker itself to hear anything. Also I have to tweak the volume dial a bit because sometimes the audio won’t go through both speakers unless I kinda keep twisting the volume until they both have audio.

So yeah, I’m hopefully looking for something cheap like around 20 dollars. Has it’s own volume separate from your computers, and has generally good quality. I’ll even take something 5 years old if it works, Lol.

I looked at the fan differences and advised to buy the original one. The newer version has little difference for a 50% increase in price. As long as the socket type matches, it should fit just fine.

Well, Nek, good luck with your build.

I know that I had a blast putting mine together after christmas.

  1. Make sure to ground yourself constantly while handling the parts
  2. Dont Open their bags until you are about to put them in the rig
  3. There are cord management slots in the case for a reason, try to hide the majority of wires there.(for max airflow)
  4. Remember, you’ll love it after its done.

Have fun. I anticipated for mine for a half of a year, getting parts together (aswell as $900 to help pay for it) I havent regretted the purchase since, but it has given me a few heartattacks here and there, what with Windows not loading and giving me errors 4 tiems in a row after a papa roach concert.

Cool! Yea I would go with the original one as well, it’s cheaper, and the performance gains are minimal. The case that I put in that build has two case fans already, so make sure to plug those into the motherboard.

As always when building a computer, there is a chance something may not work. My first build I did my Power Supply was dead.

As for speakers, $20 is not much. It may be more cost effective to either go for a cheap pair of headphones, or scower eBay/craigslist for them. $20 is going to get no quality if they are new.