Likely Building My First Computer Sometime This Year. Maybe.

Discussion in 'Tech Chat' started by African Grey, Nov 2, 2012.

  1. African Grey

    African Grey Achievement Hunter

    Might be a long way off to some extent, and also likely to be the cheapest I can go, because I really am limited. I'm just feeding some help finding out how things are priced these days and what's cheaper than it used to be and where I can save the most money.

    Not planning on anything fancy. Aside from a monitor I'm going to see how much I can do with $5-600 before figuring out how much I can spend on it. I've had the same crummy laptop for the longest time and it's near its end. I need something new soon, that can actually play games. With this old thing even a $200 netbook might feel like an upgrade.

    With that sort of budget there's hardly a point to building it myself, but it's something I want to do so when I can finally buy something good later I understand the process. Most of this thread is nonsense and I have no idea what I'm doing. I've got a part time minimum wage job and rent to pay, it should take a few months to get anything saved up.
  2. CaptSpiffy

    CaptSpiffy Best Moderator NA

    I'll have to update the parts list that I used, but I built a gaming rig for a friend of mine for about the same amount as you have budgeted. I'll need to do a bit of updating, but can easily figure something out for you.

    Sent from my KFOT using Tapatalk 2
  3. Reechard

    Reechard Server Admin VF4-S (Server Operator) Minecraft Operator Staff Member Minecraft Admin

    $500-600 is a budget to build your own mid-range machine from parts. I'm on the other side of the fence where it's NEVER worth it to buy a pre-build machine, as they tend to have sub-par parts, or do stupid things like use older RAM with newer processors, custom motherboards or cases that limit what parts you can upgrade (or replace, in the case of custom motherboards), and come pre-loaded with bloatware that makes your brand-new machine run like butt. Building hypothetical machines on Newegg is something I enjoy torturing myself with, and I just went through and built a decent machine that will probably play every game that's out at the moment, at its highest settings. It has a better video card than what I have, and mine will still crank everything up to high. Grand total was $612 before shipping, but it can certainly be "trimmed" down;

    AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz
    Asus AM3 Motherboard
    8GB Kingston RAM
    ASUS GeForce GTX 650 1GB Video Card
    120GB Kingston SSD
    1TB Seagate "storage" drive
    Asus DVD Burner
    Rosewill case/PSU

    This can definitely be made cheaper, nickel and dimed down here and there, and it can definitely also go the other way. There are motherboards that will work with this that were $10-20 cheaper than the one I picked, but weren't quite as forgiving in the upgrades department later-on. The CPU is only $95, and if you end up with more than you planned, there's always switching to Intel. I've been on AMD for 2 years now without any issues, though. The SSD/storage drive combo could go away completely and be replaced with a single, mid-capacity, higher-performance drive rather than the fastest there is combined with the slowest there is. The video card is only $125, and there is a lot of flex there as well. The sky or the floor are the limits when you build yourself, and if you need any help just post it up here and you'll get more opinions than you'll want before it's all over.
  4. ImSpartacus

    ImSpartacus Not a Noob

    Reechard's build would work and he obviously knows what he's doing. However, I tend to go in a different direction for sub-$600 builds.

    Since you said you're currently working on a shitty laptop, you could do something special with a custom-built desktop. You could intentionally lack certain non-essential parts like the discrete GPU or storage hard drive and expect to upgrade your machine with those parts years later. So to contrast with Reechard, that's what I'll provide.

    $471.04 shipped after five rebates ($541.06 before)

    Promo Codes:


    Please note that I included Windows 8 64-bit. If you run Linux, then that's $100 off your pre-rebate bill ($80 AR).

    As you can see, there's no hard drive or GPU and only one stick of RAM. I don't see these as hardships since the SSD is probably larger than your current hard drive, Trinity has the best integrated graphics ever (definitely better than your current laptop graphics), and the single stick of RAM is as big as both of Reechard's two sticks together.

    So while the Reechard's system will feature superior gaming performance initially, I think you will find Trinity as a fine upgrade in the short term. In a year or two, if you spend $150-200 on a GPU, your gaming performance will be vastly superior to buying that discrete GTX 650 today.

    And if you find yourself in need of storage, you can get something like this $65 1.5TB (1500GB) Seagate hard drive.

    Finally, if you find that you need another 8GB of RAM, a 1600MHz stick of DDR3 will cost you $30-40, probably less in a year or two.

    Good luck on your new build!
  5. CaptSpiffy

    CaptSpiffy Best Moderator NA

    This is a fantastic build... HOWEVER I'm not a huge fan of Kingston's RAM as it tends to be kinda iffy in quality.
    My current RAM is the G. Skill Ripjaw X 4x4GB kit. It's 16GB of RAM for only $70 with free shipping.
    However, if you only want 8GB, they also sell a 2x4GB kit for only $40, also with free shipping.
    As for motherboard, I recommend the ASUS M5A88. It's almost the exact same motherboard i've currently got in my system, only the most recent generation.

    You totes don't need an SSD.
  6. ImSpartacus

    ImSpartacus Not a Noob

    I feel like it's very important to include an SSD in a new machine. The perceptual performance boost is immense and current prices make it hard to forgo including them.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. African Grey

    African Grey Achievement Hunter

    Thanks for the help guys. I sort of just had a couple financial setbacks so I might have to wait a little longer than I thought on this. I guess I'll see how that all works out.
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