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Thread: Budget gaming PC

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    Budget gaming PC

    Hi guys,

    Thinking about possibly buiding a new PC for gaming on, but have an extremely limited budget, probably no more than around 500 quid. I have 2 CRT monitors (a 17" Philips and 19" Iiyama), keyboard, mouse, optical drives and possibly a case.

    I know I'm not going to get earth-shattering performance for this budget, so would like some advice on what to get to make the most of it.

    Thanks.

    Edit - am currently muddling through with my Acer 5685 laptop, CoH managed 25fps with upper-mid/lower-high, low-res detail settings and was perfectly enjoyable. Stalker, on the other hand, was playable, but not smooth on lowest settings.
    Last edited by gt81; 16-08-2007 at 09:29 PM.

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    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    If you are willing to overclock quite a bit then..

    Pentium Core 2 Duo 1.6 + Scythe mine/ninja (a decent HSF) = £70
    abit IP-35 = £65
    2gb pc6400 ram = £50
    250gb hard drive = £40
    corsair 520w psu = £65
    8800GTS 320mb = £170

    £460 .. leaves room for a new case if you wanted

    That cpu will overclock to 2.8 - 3.0ghz quite easily or you could put the extra £40 into a better cpu

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Cool...

    I've never overclocked before so am reluctant to start for the time being

    I may be able to stretch to a C2D E6550 or 6750. I've also seen the Athlon 6000+ going for about 80 quid, presumably it would be a decent budget alternative?

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    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    yeah the amd 5600+ and 6000+ are pretty good if you dont want to overclock.

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Thanks.

    PC Gamer had an article this month on building a PC on a PS3 budget, which was interesting, one of those can you build a gaming PC at console prices things. They put a barebones system together for £421.46 and got over 40FPS in Stalker, Prey, Oblivion and FEAR at 1280x720, 4xAF, 2xAS and 'medium' detail settings, so things look promising for budget PC gaming.

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    finding nemo staffsMike's Avatar
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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    If you built the above pc with the 8800GTS it will get well over 40fps and max settings.

    I run stalker with max settings @ 1680x1050 with my GTS

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Lucky git! My old man has a 8800GTX and 22" monitor, don't think he realised it's overkill for that resolution, but graphics cards seem to be the one thing he's always bought as top-end components. I've always made do with the systems he hands down to me when he upgrades, and naturally they're never good enough to play the latest games, so I'm accustomed to gaming on low detail settings (or even going without, and buying classics on budget a few years down the line)

    Thing is, atm I'm still paying off the loan I took out to buy my laptop and printer and extended to get another car when my other one went pop. Once I pay it off Q1 next year I could always take another small one out to build a PC, but I'm impatient. I go through spells where I embrace my geeky gaming side and others where I resent it, and it just happens I'm embracing it atm
    Last edited by gt81; 16-08-2007 at 10:31 PM.

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by gt81 View Post
    I've never overclocked before so am reluctant to start for the time being
    I had never overclocked before i did a mates the other week but i can assure you its a simple and interesting process, learn a lot about how componants rely on each other etc. Using clunks guide and another guide i found specifically for the gigabyte DS3 boards it really was a doddle! If your embracing the geeky side atm its deffo worth a crack, you dont have to push the boundrieds at all just go for a reasonable speed.

    If they case you said you might be abel to get doesnt become available then this would be my suggestion...



    And do a modest overclock to about 2.5 - 2.8 which is easily do-able

    If you can get a case then spend the extra dosh on a better cpu/ram/mobo... suppose you could get the PC6400 ram anyway as there is £20 quid left within the budget

    If you really dont want o overclock then get a lesser PSU and maybe just go for AMD as you will get better performances with stock levels for the price.
    Last edited by Biscuit; 16-08-2007 at 11:16 PM.

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    For about £2 more you can get the 800Mhz Corsair on Scan. Plus in 6 posts time, you can get free delivery from them...

    Another thing, today only on a Friday usually has loads of good deals, might be better to wait for that, then there's the MixIt bundles on a Saturday morning...

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Biscuit View Post
    I had never overclocked before i did a mates the other week but i can assure you its a simple and interesting process, learn a lot about how componants rely on each other etc. Using clunks guide and another guide i found specifically for the gigabyte DS3 boards it really was a doddle! If your embracing the geeky side atm its deffo worth a crack, you dont have to push the boundrieds at all just go for a reasonable speed.

    If they case you said you might be abel to get doesnt become available then this would be my suggestion...



    And do a modest overclock to about 2.5 - 2.8 which is easily do-able

    If you can get a case then spend the extra dosh on a better cpu/ram/mobo... suppose you could get the PC6400 ram anyway as there is £20 quid left within the budget

    If you really dont want o overclock then get a lesser PSU and maybe just go for AMD as you will get better performances with stock levels for the price.
    Looks good, thanks for your input.

    Would I need a decent cpu cooler to o/c this chip or could I get this speed using the stock fan?

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Smudger View Post
    For about £2 more you can get the 800Mhz Corsair on Scan. Plus in 6 posts time, you can get free delivery from them...

    Another thing, today only on a Friday usually has loads of good deals, might be better to wait for that, then there's the MixIt bundles on a Saturday morning...
    Aye, have picked 800Mhz Corsair as 1st choice. I have been looking around at bundle deals on various sites, but not really sure which budget motherboards to look for.. would need onboard sound and be able to utilise the 8800gts and provide easy to use overclocking features

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Biscuit View Post
    I had never overclocked before i did a mates the other week but i can assure you its a simple and interesting process, learn a lot about how componants rely on each other etc. Using clunks guide and another guide i found specifically for the gigabyte DS3 boards it really was a doddle! If your embracing the geeky side atm its deffo worth a crack, you dont have to push the boundrieds at all just go for a reasonable speed.

    If they case you said you might be abel to get doesnt become available then this would be my suggestion...



    And do a modest overclock to about 2.5 - 2.8 which is easily do-able

    If you can get a case then spend the extra dosh on a better cpu/ram/mobo... suppose you could get the PC6400 ram anyway as there is £20 quid left within the budget

    If you really dont want o overclock then get a lesser PSU and maybe just go for AMD as you will get better performances with stock levels for the price.
    Was gonna say, you'll have to overclock the RAM which is trickier to get the cpu to 2.8.

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Dreaming View Post
    Was gonna say, you'll have to overclock the RAM which is trickier to get the cpu to 2.8.
    According to CustomPC:

    To confirm the memory's budget credentials, it's only rated as needing 1.9V, so it will produce less waste heat than beefier kits at stock settings. That said, with a decent case, you shouldn't need to worry too much about heat, and when we raised the memory voltage to 2.2V, the Corsair was able to run much faster. With the latency timings untouched, the kit was happy to run at 970MHz. When we slackened the timings to 6-6-6-18, the Corsair RAM happily ran at 1,030MHz.

    They've given it an approved award as their budget memory of choice. Is this enough to clock the cpu to around 2.5-2.6ghz?

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    You should be able to get about 3Ghz out of a 4400 at stock memory speeds. If I get Clunk's guide right, running the FSB at 333Mhz (same as 667Mhz DDR) with the 9x multiplier = 3Ghz. With 800Mhz memory, you might get more. I'm willing to be proven wrong though...

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Smudger View Post
    You should be able to get about 3Ghz out of a 4400 at stock memory speeds. If I get Clunk's guide right, running the FSB at 333Mhz (same as 667Mhz DDR) with the 9x multiplier = 3Ghz. With 800Mhz memory, you might get more. I'm willing to be proven wrong though...
    Excellent. I'm not looking for an extreme overclock, a more modest 2.6Ghz would be plenty enough for me, should put it on par with the E6600 my dad has got in his system and presumably better than the 5600+. To put things in perspective, I have have a 2Ghz Mobile C2D and 2gb of 667mhz memory in my laptop, which is plenty quick enough for general use and the limiting factor for games is the geforce go 7600.

    Only other thing is the power consumption, my dad won't overclock his computer because he's not keen on increasing the power draw, so I don't want to increase mine too much, lest he get pissed at me using too much electricity.

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    Re: Budget gaming PC

    Quote Originally Posted by Smudger View Post
    You should be able to get about 3Ghz out of a 4400 at stock memory speeds. If I get Clunk's guide right, running the FSB at 333Mhz (same as 667Mhz DDR) with the 9x multiplier = 3Ghz. With 800Mhz memory, you might get more. I'm willing to be proven wrong though...
    I thought that the 4400 was x10? which would mean 3.33ghz
    I'd deffinately add an after market cooler to replace the stock one if you're going for 3ghz+ on a 4400
    Scythe Mine is £24 from scan

    Considering that the Gigabyte motherboard is out of stock
    Abit iB9 at a whole 54p more (also has 2 IDE connectors for reuseing IDE hard drives & cd/dvd)
    or the classic Asus P5B £3.53 more.

    You should be able to get away with a slightly cheaper PSU
    in the £50 range a 400W FSP Blue storm II or 400W AKASA PAXPower Should be able to handel a 8800gts + e4400 + overclock.
    Although they are not modular and would have less overhead for future upgrades/additions.

    PS when you said CoH did you mean Company of Heroes os City of Heroes?

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