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Thread: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

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    Smile Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Hi all.

    Firstly, I do hope I've posted this in the correct section. Apologies if not!

    I'm looking to build two low cost PCs for my sister's teenage sons (no OS, no monitors). Not much of a budget is available for this at all - around £275 per PC. I used to be very much a PC build geek, but life has meant that I return to the scene after 5 years of complete absence and find myself almost totally clueless about today's parts! =/ Having asked around, I ordered:

    2x Be Quiet 350W Pure Power PSU - 80plus Certified 4x SATA 120mm Fan
    2x Sony AD-5240S 24x DVD±RW DL Internal SATA Black Bare Drive
    2x MSI 740GTM-P25 740G Socket AM2+ 8 Channel Audio Out MATX Motherboard

    I also already have the cases and OS sorted.

    I would love a little advice on the rest. With a budget left of around £350ish, I have been recommended:

    2x AMD Athlon X2 240 2.8GHz Socket AM3 2MB Cache Retail Box Processor
    2x Western Digital Caviar SE16 Hard Drive - 500GB - 7200rpm - Serial ATA/300 - Serial ATA
    2x Sapphire ATi Radeon HD 4670 1GB GDDR3 PCIe Graphics Card DVI-I HD-15 HDMI
    ...and for the RAM either:

    2x Crucial 2GB Kit (2x1GB) DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 Memory Non-ECC Unbuffered CL6
    or
    2x OCZ 2GB 2x1GB DDR2 800MHz/PC2-6400 Platinum XTC Dual Channel Kit

    So far, it's been rather a pain even managing to find a seller that has the latter RAM in stock. I'm finding my complete sense of cluelessness regarding today's PC tech rather depressing, as it barely seems I turned my back before everything changed.

    I therefore would love any help that could be offered by any of you kind (and up to date) tech wizards. I realise the budget for these components is tight, so it's all going to be about bang (whimper?) for the buck here. I'm particularly lost re: the RAM, so any pointers would be gratefully received.

    The nephews' current PC is based on an Athlon XP 2500+, with a Radeon 9550 agp card, so we don't need miracles here! They mostly game, and I've already broken it to them that they wont be running Crysis silky smooth anytime soon on the new computers.

    Loads of thanks in advance to any kind guys/gals who would be willing to help out.

    Jessica =)

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Welcome to Hexus!! Also it maybe able to spec something that will run Crysis fine!!


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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Here goes:

    2 X HD4770 512MB ~ £110

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/173741

    2 X AMD Athlon II X2 240 ~ £89

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/168971

    This card is faster than an 8800GT in most games and has relatively low power consumption too!!

    2 X Samsung F3 500GB ~ £76

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/146252

    One of the fastest 500GB hard disks out there.

    2 X OCZ 1066MHZ DDR2 ~ £88

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/128022

    AMD CPUs have the memory controller in the CPU itself and DDR2 1066MHZ or DDR3 1333MHZ are the best speeds of memory to go for with the current Athlon II and Phenom II CPUs AFAIK.

    The total comes to around £363 excluding postage. Ebuyer does do free Supersaver postage though on orders over £49.99!!

    Here is a review of the HD4770:

    http://www.hardocp.com/article/2009/...adeon_hd_4770/

    http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=700&type=expert

    The one you get for around £55 does not have the nicer cooler but performance should be similar to the ones in the reviews.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 10-11-2009 at 09:39 PM.


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    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Ah, CAT beat me to it, you'll need to get 4pin molex to 6 pin PCI-E connector for the graphics cards though as the power supplies you got does not come with 6 pin PCI-E connectors.

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulti View Post
    Ah, CAT beat me to it, you'll need to get 4pin molex to 6 pin PCI-E connector for the graphics cards though as the power supplies you got does not come with 6 pin PCI-E connectors.
    What he said!!

    However the necessary adapters may come included with the graphics card so it would be prudent to check first!!

    Edit!!

    No adapters are included according to the Powercolor website:
    http://www.powercolor.com/Global/pro...ProductID=6323

    Reviews contradict each other regarding the bundle supplied:
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/P...770_PCS/2.html
    http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Ha...rhd4770/3.html
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 10-11-2009 at 10:49 PM.


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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Yikes - that was quick! It really is frustrating being so clueless regarding all this, for now at least. I was under the impression that 800mhz RAM was the ceiling for the processor I was recommended. Thank you so much for the insight. As I pretty much asked around, then bought rather blindly (I'm ashamed to admit), I also didn't know the mobo I was rec'd to buy was able to take DDR3.

    Cheers for all the help so far, Cat and Ulti. To save some face, I'd like to point out again that I was once Queen of the Nerds (or so I fancied, anyway). Could barely move in my house for stacks of computer magazines, and I could bore any given person to tears at a party with details of my latest build. Often in less than 30 seconds.

    Now, I'm at the start of the journey back to earning my geek stripes once more. A friend told me this was a great forum for that, and it seems he was correct =)

    Cheers,

    Jessica =)

  7. #7
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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Quote Originally Posted by Lapis View Post
    Yikes - that was quick! It really is frustrating being so clueless regarding all this, for now at least. I was under the impression that 800mhz RAM was the ceiling for the processor I was recommended. Thank you so much for the insight. As I pretty much asked around, then bought rather blindly (I'm ashamed to admit), I also didn't know the mobo I was rec'd to buy was able to take DDR3.

    Cheers for all the help so far, Cat and Ulti. To save some face, I'd like to point out again that I was once Queen of the Nerds (or so I fancied, anyway). Could barely move in my house for stacks of computer magazines, and I could bore any given person to tears at a party with details of my latest build. Often in less than 30 seconds.

    Now, I'm at the start of the journey back to earning my geek stripes once more. A friend told me this was a great forum for that, and it seems he was correct =)

    Cheers,

    Jessica =)
    The motherboard cannot take DDR3 but I was just pointing out the best memory frequencies. Sorry about the confusion there!!

    BTW,I would buy the HD4770 cards pronto as Ebuyer can raise their prices very quickly at times and also the cards may start to sell out as more people realise their bargain pricing!!

    PS: Geeky women are rare and I wish there were more around!! Wear your Geek stripes with pride!!


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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Once again CAT has beaten us to it and pritty much nailed it.


    I take it you are planning on reusing their current cases?

    EDIT: pc2-6400 800mhz is the sweet spot for intel core2 cpu's, as it's cheaper and leaves plenty of overclocking head room, however as CAT pointed out the AMD cpu's especially the newer ones get far more out of faster memory.

    PS welcome to HEXUS

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    What he said!!

    However the necessary adapters may come included with the graphics card so it would be prudent to check first!!

    Edit!!

    No adapters are included according to the Powercolor website:
    http://www.powercolor.com/Global/pro...ProductID=6323

    Reviews contradict each other regarding the bundle supplied:
    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/P...770_PCS/2.html
    http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Ha...rhd4770/3.html
    I'm pretty sure no connectors come as 3 reviews + newegg all show the same things provided. However TPU must have accidently said that the 4pin molex to 6pin PCI-E was provided when it actually isn't if you look at their screenshot. Guess they were slightly asleep when they typed it up xD

    Cheers for all the help so far, Cat and Ulti. To save some face, I'd like to point out again that I was once Queen of the Nerds (or so I fancied, anyway). Could barely move in my house for stacks of computer magazines, and I could bore any given person to tears at a party with details of my latest build. Often in less than 30 seconds.

    Now, I'm at the start of the journey back to earning my geek stripes once more. A friend told me this was a great forum for that, and it seems he was correct =)

    Cheers,

    Jessica =)
    Haha, I hate how I like upgrade my pc but then if I go into school talking about it I wouldn't have anyone to talk to (well not many haha)

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulti View Post
    I'm pretty sure no connectors come as 3 reviews + newegg all show the same things provided. However TPU must have accidently said that the 4pin molex to 6pin PCI-E was provided when it actually isn't if you look at their screenshot. Guess they were slightly asleep when they typed it up xD



    Haha, I hate how I like upgrade my pc but then if I go into school talking about it I wouldn't have anyone to talk to (well not many haha)
    I hardly know any hardware geeks TBH and most of my mates who are geeks are into software. You would think people in the more scientific and technology related disciplines would be more geekier - guess what?? They aren't!!


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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    I hardly know any hardware geeks TBH and most of my mates who are geeks are into software. You would think people in the more scientific and technology related disciplines would be more geekier - guess what?? They aren't!!
    Don't really want to hijack the thread but it's true, hardly any hardware geeks haha. You get science, computing etc geeks but never see hardware geeks often. Probably only 5 people know what a 5870 is in my whole school haha. Perhaps when I go uni next year there'll be more hardware geeks xD But then again a conversation about hardware isn't the most interesting I've got to admit haha.

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulti View Post
    Don't really want to hijack the thread but it's true, hardly any hardware geeks haha. You get science, computing etc geeks but never see hardware geeks often. Probably only 5 people know what a 5870 is in my whole school haha. Perhaps when I go uni next year there'll be more hardware geeks xD But then again a conversation about hardware isn't the most interesting I've got to admit haha.
    I only know one person who knows what an HD5870 is and he got to play around one at his workplace too when they were launched!! IIRC,the company was looking at the Eyefinity abilities of the graphics card.

    OTH, alcohol and the associated general merriment tend to be just a bit more interesting!!


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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Never really worried too much about knowing hardware geeks in RL, myself. I had forums for that and when I got on a roll in real life about various details of a build and such, well, I'm not sure I noticed too much if the person ''listening'' was genuinely interested or whether they had the tell tale tears of boredom welling up in their rapidly glazing eyes. Possibly a social faux pas. Oh well!

    Anyway, which print magazines would today's self respecting hardware geek call essential? Would love some advice on this, as mags were always my primary source of info way back when.

    Jessi =)

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    It annoys me, I know more than my computing teacher about actual computers!

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    And in answer to your question, Custom PC, absolutely essential

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    Re: Looking for advice - low budget ''gaming capable'' build

    Moose plummeted on the post!!
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 11-11-2009 at 02:44 PM.


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