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Building a gaming rig


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#1
frow

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Hey everyone,
I need a new computer my old Dell won't play any new games and I can't do anymore upgrading so I am looking at putting one together myself. I have about $2000 to work with. I have a monitor, speakers, keyboard, and mouse from my Dell that will work fine for now. What I am looking for is building a computer that will hopefully last for the next generation of games. What I am looking for is what you guys would do if you had $2000 to spend. You all seem very knowledgable and unfortuanatly for me I have not kept up with the new technology. Please suggest parts that will be able to be upgraded in the future. I don't think my wife will let me do this again for years. I play a lot of fps and I do alot of online gaming if that will help any. Thank everyone for your help.

Case
Power Supply
CPU
Motherboard
Memory
Hard Drive
Graphics
Dvd-Rom Drive

I could use suggestions for all of these items.
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#2
QzXx

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Well, $2000 is a lot of cash to spend on a new rig if you have speakers and whatnot already especially if you build it yourself which i would recommend.

Firstly, you need to get all your parts to build your own computer. I would recommend getting most or all of them from the same place.


Case: For the case just get anything that looks good and is Standard ATX. If it is Standard ATX it will fit all the parts you need. I got a reasonable case for about 40 pounds which is about 80 dollars.

Power Supply: Most cases come with a power supply inside but check the wattage and quality to see if it will power the system you want. 400W and over is a safe bet.

CPU: Personally i use Intel Pentium 4's but AMD will do just as well. You want something around the 3.0ghz mark. AMD tend to be cheaper and run at lower temps. You could also go for an AMD 64 which is a 64bit processor and good for games.

Motherboard: The Mobo really depends on the rest of the system. For and Intel based board go for something made by Abit. I use the Abit AG8 on my current gaming system. Its a nice board and a reasonable price. You get a uGuru clock which gives you the temperature of and speed of fans in your system on a external clock.

Memory: Go for about 1GB of memory if you can. Use DDR 400 or DD2 but again this depends on what your mobo will support. Try to find out the CL of the memory. You want a CL of 2-3 on your memory. Something to note about CL of memory is that DDR2 memory with a CL of 2.5 will be slower than DDR memory with a CL of 2.

Hard Drive: Not much to say here. Just depends how much space you want. Most Mobos like my AG8 will support either IDE or SATA.

Graphics: For a gaming system and one you are looking to be 'furture proof' i would recommend a PCI-EXPRESS video card. PCI-EXPRESS is the new faster slot used for graphics cards and having this slot will ensure your ability to use future cards. I would also recommend an ATI card as they are very good performers and much better than Nvidia. You want the ATI X800Xt or X850 Radeon.

CD Drive: Just preference here. Whatever drive you want. If you play and write to DVDs get a DVD RW.

I could give you some links to some good items if you wish but i use www.Aria.co.uk and i dont think they will deliver to the States.

Edited by QzXx, 27 June 2005 - 05:53 PM.

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#3
frow

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Thanks for your input. I have decided to go with the AMD 64 processor though. So with that in mind what should I do with the rest.
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#4
Doby

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Hi,

Nice choice going with the AMD 64 with your budget in mind I suggest a 939 pin model so you can have dual channel ram. Keep in mind that if you select the Amd FX processor you will need registerd ram so read up on them over at Amd. get a retail processor the warrenty is much better then oem

I prefer Abit and Asus motherboards they are top of the line as well as MSI and gigabyte so do some research, when you find a specific model that has the features you like post back I am sure someone has or used one and will respond.

Crucial, OCZ, Corsair all are good ram, 1 gig of pc 3200 dual channel kit would be best.

Psu (power supply) is important get a name brand (Antec, ultra,ernmax,thermaltake) 400w at least, also look for one that has amps in the 20's on the 12v rail.

Look into sata hard drives there a bit faster and the cableing is much smaller and that helps with cable clutter and airflow.

I'll let someone else comment on video cards cause they are everchanging to todays gaming needs.

Rick
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#5
hvc801

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god if only i had 2g's to work with ....... yes you can def build a nice rig with that cash.
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#6
KGH

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Hey Frow

I have just put together an ABIT AV8 3rd Eye; AMD 4000+; BFG 6600GTOC; 1 gig Corsair XMS3200C2 RAM; Dual layer Pioneer DVR109 DVD Drive; Logitech X230 Sound, all running in a Thermaltake Tsunami Dream case.

I had a Benq 17" LCD from last PC and good keyboard and mouse etc.

The upgrade cost me about AUD$1400 (about US$1070 - and our prices are somewhat higher). Putting it together yourself is definitely a good experience.

I don't agree with Qzxx about the case and power supply (as Doby said). Invest a little more in a good case with either installed cooling (eg, a couple of 120mm fans) or appropriate mounting points. You will also find that the cheaper cases generally tend to be more prone to static problems which is something to consider if you are building it yourself. Antec, Thermaltake and Lian Li all make good cases with the latter being the most expensive.

The Thermaltake Tsunami Dream case I am using is very well made with detachable hard drive and floppy bays, tool less 5.25" drive bays for easy installation and tool less removable PCI rear excerpts (which, I actually find are a lot more difficult to use than the screw in ones). It comes equipped with a rear 120mm exhaust; front 120mm intake and a 92mm side intake fan which blows directly onto the heatsink on an ABIT AV8. It is probably a middle of the range case but is a good compromise between looks, size, weight and utility.

Look for a power supply with around 450-500w (at least over 20A on the 12v line) so that you will be set for a while.

As for video cards, Nvidia performs better in some games and ATI better in others. ATI still have better anti aliasing in most games, although the image quality differential is difficult to detect. The Nvidia 6800 GT Ultra's are very good cards but are quite pricey (still about AUD$800-1000). The ATI X850's also look good.

ATI and NVIDIA are probably generally pretty close except where a game has been specifically designed with one 'platform' in mind. If you go with NVIDIA, I would recommend not going with anything less than a 6600GT.
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#7
warriorscot

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Yeah a good case is essential also its probably your most sound investment as if you get one thats atx and btx compatible then you will be able to use it for many years after you have replaced the last of the pc parts you are going to buy now. Also you never now nice pc cases might be collectors items in the future.
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#8
spudZ

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Nice choice going with the AMD 64 with your budget in mind I suggest a 939 pin model so you can have dual channel ram. Keep in mind that if you select the Amd FX processor you will need registerd ram so read up on them over at Amd. get a retail processor the warrenty is much better then oem

Rick

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You don't need registered RAM anymore for FX CPUs unless you use a socket 940 motherboard, which you definately shouldn't because socket 939 way better for upgrading in the future and uses unbuffered RAM.

As for video cards, Nvidia performs better in some games and ATI better in others. ATI still have better anti aliasing in most games, although the image quality differential is difficult to detect. The Nvidia 6800 GT Ultra's are very good cards but are quite pricey (still about AUD$800-1000). The ATI X850's also look good.


As for a video card, definately go for one of the new GeForce 7800GTX if you can afford it. High clock speed, 256bit memory, and 24 pipelines ;) .

-spudZ :tazz:
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#9
warriorscot

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Or get a cheaper card and wait for the r550 with 512mb of gddr3 and 42 pipes . The 7800 only has 16 effective pipes though which quite sucks the rest are all magic ones. Apparently the magic pipes are for later games that need different things from the gpu i dont get it thats why they are magic.
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