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Build Advice Budget upgrade to Core i3 (£500 max)

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by janineo, 30 Aug 2012.

  1. janineo

    janineo What's a Dremel?

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    I've decided to finally upgrade my 7 year old PC.
    I want to upgrade to Win7, but want to get an OEM or upgrade version, so I'm going to upgrade the CPU/Mobo/RAM at the same time.

    I upgraded my husbands PC last year to a Core i5 2500K, P67 system, but he plays FPS's and RPG's all the time, and I just don't need that kind of power.

    I want something that will last me another 5+ years with minor upgrades.
    I don't know whether to go for a Sandy Bridge or Ivy Bridge Core i3, and which LGA1155 chipset would be suitable. Most reviews I've found have been for Z77 boards, and I don't think I need that much in a board.



    Budget: £500 max, less would be good.

    Main uses of intended build: Internet, some editing of home photos & videos (HD quality), iPlayer, NetFlix, etc. Occasional home working so plenty of RAM to run VS. Maybe some minor gaming, but haven't really done any in over a year (7 month old daughter will do that), and it was only occasional Neverwinter Nights, Civ 4, or Settlers.

    Parts required: CPU, Mobo, RAM, Cooler, OS. Probably need a new PSU. Would like an SSD for OS if not too expensive. Will use current case, onboard GPU, or current 9600GT. No need for new HDD as have a NAS with 2TB.

    Previous build information: Athlon X2 3800+, Asus A8N-SLI SE, 2GB RAM, GeForce 9600GT, 250GB Samsung HDD, WinXP Pro, Antec SLK1650B case.

    Monitor resolution: 1280x1024 17" (May consider new monitor in future)

    Storage requirements: Existing storage is fine.

    Will you be overclocking: no

    Any motherboard requirements (no. of USB, Xfire/SLI, fan headers): Fan control would be a bonus.

    Extra information about desired system: Quiet as possible. Current PC is noisy as ****.
    Passively cooled CPU would be a bonus, and as quiet as reasonable possible PSU. Should I consider new fans, or a better case for passive cooling?


    Many Thanks,
    Janine
     
  2. T2I3M

    T2I3M Minimodder

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    Windows 7
    i3 2120
    Gigabyte GA-Z77M-D3H
    8GB Corsair RAM
    500W Corsair Builder PSU
    128GB Crucial SSD
    Arctic Cooling Freezer 13

    Comes to 442 from Scan.

    What case are you currently using?
     
  3. malbluff

    malbluff What's a Dremel?

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    Ivybridge hasn't (as yet) got i3. If it had, it might be a good option. I doubt Sandy Bridge i3 is going to see you a decent distance, into the future. If you want "a little light gaming", i5 Ivybridge is possibly a better way to go, as the onboard graphics are quite good, for "light" gaming. If you don't want to overclock, you don't need to go fully to a Z77 mobo, nor do you need aftermarket cooler, so a budget of £500 could be met. If you want overclocking, and/or graphics card, it might push budget a bit.
     
  4. aNuclearPidgeon

    aNuclearPidgeon Minimodder

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    Just to save you some dosh there.

    Also, you mentioned that it'll be used for a bit of gaming. If you don't want a decrete gfx card then it might be worth investing on a i5 3570K for its integrated Intel HD 4000 or wait for the Ivybridge's i3 line to come out. If you pick the latter then keep an eye out for the Core i3-3225.
     
  5. janineo

    janineo What's a Dremel?

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Is there a release date for the IvyBridge i3 line yet? I don't mind waiting a bit if that'll get me a longer lasting system.

    I put gaming down as I used to do it occasionally, but I can't see it happening again anytime soon. I'm getting home from work and playing with my daughter, then going to bed not long after her! I'll go with onboard graphics for now and keep a card as a possible future upgrade.

    I've never overclocked any of my previous builds - never seen the need as they've served my purposes without it.

    T213M - current case is Antec SLK1650B. Happy enough with it.

    malbluff - which chipset should I be looking at if I don't need the Z77? And is the stock cooler noisy?

    Many Thanks
     
  6. malbluff

    malbluff What's a Dremel?

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    i3 Ivybridge was "supposed" to have been released in JUNE. They are finally on sale in the far east, so presumably it's imminent here. I'm not even sure any will BE unlocked for overclocking, but, anyway, if you don't WANT to overclock, get the equivalent H77 mobo. Same features, just not overclocking, and a bit cheaper.
    The only slight reservation about the i3's, is I'm not sure what the on board graphics will be like, if you want a bit of light gaming, without graphics card.
    Similar applies to stock cooler. Would be adequate, but actual sound level remains to be seen.
     
  7. aNuclearPidgeon

    aNuclearPidgeon Minimodder

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    The Z77 would be better for "Future-proofing". If an upgrade were to be done lets say in about 2-3 years I'm sure buying a 3570K would be cheaper and I'm sure the chip will perform adequately. If it didn't then overclocking would still be an option.
     
  8. malbluff

    malbluff What's a Dremel?

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    If I were doing it, I would totally agree. It was OP who said he didn't want i5, or overclocking.
     
  9. janineo

    janineo What's a Dremel?

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    I wanted an i3 with no overclocking because I've bought components in the past with the intention of overclocking in the future, and just not getting round to it. And that's even less likely to happen now, so I'm going to save my money and buy something that is fine for my needs.

    My current PC is perfectly adequate for what I use it for, but it's XP 32bit and I want Win7 64bit. Quieter and faster booting would be good too.

    So I'll get an IvyBridge i3 when it comes out, and an H77 mobo, and spend the money saved on an SSD and a quieter cooler.

    Many Thanks for your replies and advice,
    Janine
     
  10. malbluff

    malbluff What's a Dremel?

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    Do bear in mind, at the moment, there is only an "assumption" it will be a good chip. Do be sure to check some reviews, particularly in relation to on-board graphics (if you don't want to get graphics card), before jumping in. If and when (?!?!) they actually become available.
     
  11. malbluff

    malbluff What's a Dremel?

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    The i3's are out, in China. Apparently being released in US, this week. No date/prices for UK/EU. Looks like the i3-3225 is going to be best for OP, as it has same HD4000 graphics as in the better i5's.
     
  12. janineo

    janineo What's a Dremel?

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    :thumb: Will certainly check reviews first, thanks.
     
  13. astanton

    astanton What's a Dremel?

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    I'm in a very similar position myself. Got an eight-year-old Athlon 64 system, which despite some minor upgrades, is finally in need of a replacement.

    With a £500 budget in mind I'm currently looking at the following:

    - Core i3 3225 (should be released in Sept)

    - Asus P8Z77-V LX (at ~£80 only a little more than a H77, SATAIII/USB3.0 etc. will ensure decent future proofing)

    - Corsair 8GB DDR3 1600MHz (Pretty cheap at the mo for ~£45, you could save more if 4GB is sufficient)

    - Corsair 600W or 650W PSU (I would probably upgrade depending on how old your current is)

    - Intel 330 or Samsung 830 or Crucial M4 SSD (if you decide on it)

    In your situation I would personally recommend foregoing an SSD and putting the money towards saving for a 22-24 inch monitor (Dell imho). Espeically seeing as you mention the system's use will be for HD photo/video editing and streaming iPlayer/Netflix.

    With regards to the CPU, bear in mind that not all Ivy Bridge chips have the HD4000 graphics, some have HD2500. The i3 3225 I mentioned is the only i3 that has the former, more powerful, graphics on board. In fact, only a couple of the i5s have it, so be sure to double check via ark.intel.com to ensure that whatever chip you decide on has the better graphics. Reviews I've read have recieved it well, and so you should definately have no trouble whatsoever running the games you mentioned.
     
  14. aNuclearPidgeon

    aNuclearPidgeon Minimodder

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  15. malbluff

    malbluff What's a Dremel?

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    I read a very basic right-up on their launch, in China, that made a point that the 3225 was the only one to have HD4000 graphics, so one is wrong. What I don't know is which!
     
  16. astanton

    astanton What's a Dremel?

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    I'm sure that retailer is incorrect.

    As the Ivy Bridge i3s haven't been officially launched yet they're absent on ark.intel.com, however the detailed table on wikipedia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivy_Bridge_(microarchitecture)#Desktop_processors

    does indicate the 3225 has HD4000 graphics (in bold). You may not think it a reliable source, but it is correct for the i5s and i7s if you compare to ark.

    Regardless, Intel are likely to add the info to ark once it has been released, so you should be able to confirm before buying.
     
  17. narwen

    narwen narwen

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  18. janineo

    janineo What's a Dremel?

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    That's great, thanks.

    Will hold off buying a little longer and see if any reviews are forthcoming for the i3's in general and hopefully the 3225 in particular.
     
  19. GuilleAcoustic

    GuilleAcoustic Ook ? Ook !

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    I'm planning a similar build using a B75 mITX board + i3-3220T (35W) + 2x 4GB corsair white (low power) and a pico PSU. Looking foreward for reviews.
     
  20. astanton

    astanton What's a Dremel?

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    Yeah, just been added. Guess that confirms it 100% - HD4000 it is. And also would suggest launch is imminent in most territories. It's appeared on a few more retailers overnight (eBuyer, Lambdatek) who all seem to have it priced at ~£111, which is a very reasonable price.
     
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