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Build Advice What should my budget be?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by BloodlessDawn, 1 Jan 2012.

  1. BloodlessDawn

    BloodlessDawn I know nothing.

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    Hey,

    So; I've decided I'm definitely saving up for a new PC. I need to it be able to play the latest games, and would really love it to be future-proof. Honestly, I need to know how much roughly I should look at saving before buying a new PC? Obviously you could recommend £10,000+ or even an infinite budget. But is there a sort of "average" you could recommend for a gaming PC that will last a few years? I've been looking around the £1,200 mark, but if all you "supermodders" etc. recommend I save up to £2,000 or even £3,000 then so be it.

    I'll be upgrading over time, so I don't need all the uber best components at the moment, but I need to be able to plan for future upgrades, I don't want to be buying a new motherboard every time I buy a new graphics card, and vice versa.

    Other questions I have are about hardware.

    I know SSD's are all the rage, but should I really be budgeting for one? I figure I'll be upgrading to one in a year or two's time for a definite, so just trying to work out if buying a simply 60GB one for now is really worth it? (I'm not overly fussed about loading times as long as the over-all performance of the computer is really good.

    Secondly, Sandybridge-E... Six cores sounds nice, but I'm going to assume that budgeting for one right now is absurd and that I should wait a few years etc. But some guidance on this would be handy too.

    Any other suggestions on what I should be considering for future proofing would be great.

    Hope to hear from you all soon. :)
     
  2. David

    David μoʍ ɼouმ qᴉq λon ƨbԍuq ϝʁλᴉuმ ϝo ʁԍɑq ϝμᴉƨ

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    If I were building from scratch right now, I'd go for Sandybridge 2600K. SB-E is nice, but it's a helluva premium to pay, IMO; and I'd expect a 2600K to be competitive for a few years yet.

    I would definitely budget for decent sized SSD (120 or bigger). It isn't just loading times, they do make your system more responsive in everyday use.

    GFX - wait and see how the new nvidias stack up against the AMD 7000 series - shouldn't be more than a couple of weeks or so.

    The rest can be picked up from the hardware buyers guide on the main site.
     
  3. longweight

    longweight Possibly Longbeard.

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    Will you need new peripherals as well?
     
  4. ec928

    ec928 What's a Dremel?

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    £1200 is enough to buy a powerful "good value for money" system, especially if you've got to buy a new O/S, a new 1080p monitor etc. Nothing is future proof, but that'll get you a powerful system that will last you years. Can do it for well under £1000 if you re-use components.

    For value for money, if you're buying now, look at getting a 4 core Sandy Bridge (e.g. 2500K or 2600K etc.). Pair that up with a decent motherboard that has sata 3/USB 3. And grab a sata 3 (i.e. 6GB/s) 128GB SSD and pair that up with a 1.5TB or 2TB hard drive. As for GPU's, you get a lot for your money nowdays. nVidia 560ti or Radeon 6870's will work well with a 1080p monitor. (Although if you wait a few weeks when the new next-gen mid range AMD GPU's come out, I'm sure some people can sell you some pretty good second hand Radeon 6870's.)
     
  5. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

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    To be honest.. it depends. Do you look ONLY at your desktop, and continue to use your current monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers, or you aim to change everything with high quality peripherals, monitors, speaker, get a dedicated sound card, ultra quiet fans, CPU heatsink replacement and so on, to aim for the best computer experience possible.

    My advice is: Have a reasonable budget. And to remember that you always get what you paid for, AND, everything in your computer is important.. don't cheap out (ok you can cheap out on the optical drive), but keyb/mouse/speaker/monitor, are all you use to communicate and interact with the computer. If they suck.. well your experience would suck too. Same for the PSU. Cheap out on the PSU, and you'll break you internal components because you wanted to save a few bucks here and there. That's how I see things.
     
    Last edited: 2 Jan 2012
  6. Parge

    Parge the worst Super Moderator

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    £1200 is about spot on including monitor for a very good rig. Like you say you could spend £10k but the law of diminishing returns will kick in.
     
  7. chewbaccas_nan

    chewbaccas_nan Minimodder

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    Some websites offer better deals on certain parts than others, I know its a good idea to order all at once from one site but times are hard! For example, I was pricing up a cheap amd build, just the mobo, psu and ram, the mobo was a tenner cheaper on Ebuyer but the mobo was a few quid cheaper on Scan, that's nearly £15 towards another component.
     
  8. The_Beast

    The_Beast I like wood ಠ_ಠ

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    I would spend a little on peripherals. Having a super bitchin' computer is nice, but if you hate using it because your keyboard sucks, your mouse kinda works and you you can't see what's on the monitor, what's the point of having a super bitchin' computer in the first place. Then again it's easier to upgrade peripherals than it is to upgrade critical components
     
  9. jeckulz

    jeckulz What's a Dremel?

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    I'd say £1500 to allow you to get good gaming peripherals (mouse, board and headset)
    And a quick SSD is a must.

    GPU? 560ti or 570 if you have the cash after the above
     
  10. Ant1981

    Ant1981 Minimodder

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    You should budget £5000.
     
  11. fdbh96

    fdbh96 What's a Dremel?

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    I spent around £1000 in total for mine (with monitor and peripherals) and I got a i5 and a gtx 460 for that, which still plays most games on high/medium.
     
  12. BeauchN

    BeauchN Multimodder

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    Mine are usually under £1000 (excluding peripherals/monitor), but I like to tinker once I've built them so its quite difficult to tell really.

    If you need the extras as well I would look closer to £1500
     
  13. Blazza181

    Blazza181 SVM PLACENTA CASEI

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    Mine was roughly £700, but if you can budget £1,000, you can get a decent PC.
     
  14. BloodlessDawn

    BloodlessDawn I know nothing.

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    Apologies for not including this information in the first post.

    I'm just saving up for a new tower at the moment.

    I'd quite like to have new monitors, keyboard, mouse, speakers. But my current set works fine, and will just replace them as I get the money really.

    A lot of you have been suggesting an i7 2600K, but why has no-one suggested a 2700K? There must be a reason that I'm missing. Are GTX 590's worth the price tag they come with?

    I used my local store (www.novatech.co.uk) to price up the PC setup that I think is acceptable:

    Fractal Design Define XL Black Pearl
    ASUS Maximus IV Extreme-Z (Intel Z68 - Socket 1155)
    MSI GeForce GTX 590, 3GB
    Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2 x 4GB @1600Mhz, 9-9-9-24)
    Intel Core i7 2600K
    Corsair HX 1050W ATX2.2 PSU
    Crucial RealSSD M4 256GB (SATA 6Gb/s)
    Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB HDD
    Creative X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Pro

    This comes to £2096 at www.novatech.co.uk and £2027 on www.scan.co.uk (And probably £2000 on the nose if I got different parts from different sites).

    Is this a reasonable price for the performance that I'd get? It's certainly not what I'd call cheap, and it's the equivalent of two months wages for some people. So it's questionable.

    I haven't included a separate cooler, and am thinking about just using the stock cooler that comes with the CPU (they've never let me down before). Not made my mind up about whether I'm going to dabble in over-clocking yet, so might get a hefty cooler just to be safe. But not something I'm going to worry about budgeting for at the moment.
     
    Last edited: 4 Jan 2012
  15. longweight

    longweight Possibly Longbeard.

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    I would drop the 590, what resolution will you be gaming at? I would go for a 1.5Gb GTX 580 if you are gaming at less than 1920 x 1200.

    I also think that PSU is overkill, I would go for a 850W unless you plan to OC heavily and run triple SLi?
     
  16. Parge

    Parge the worst Super Moderator

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    Well you are getting £2000 worth of performance there.

    Personally I'd drop the 590 and replace with a 580, yes the 590 is faster, but unless you are playing at ridiculously high resolutions you won't notice the difference.

    Drop the 2600k and go with a 2500k. Most games don't take advantage of the extra 4 threads the 2600k offers anyway, and for everything else the 2500k will be more than fast enough

    You could downgrade the PSU to something around the 850w level if you do the above.

    If you are spending £2000 you most definitely should have an aftermarket CPU cooler whether you are OCing or not. Your CPU will run much cooler, and most importantly, much quieter.

    As for soundcard, thats not a bad choice, but you could also look at the Asus Xonar range as they are very good.
     
  17. BloodlessDawn

    BloodlessDawn I know nothing.

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    The only reason I initially chose a GTX 590 is that I plan on keeping it for a few years to come.
    I'd like to be upgrading this PC once every few months, but I don't know how economical that'd really be. I haven't ever been in a position of selling computer parts second hand in the past, so I don't know how well they tend to keep their value. If I can get a GTX 580 now for £370 and then sell it for £300 (or more) in 12 months time and use that money to upgrade to another graphics card, then great! If it's going to go down in value by a lot then I'll not be quite so happy...

    The PSU is overkill, I'll agree. 850W would probably suit me better. Was again just thinking about "what if" in order to allow for future upgrades. I don't want to be buying another PSU every time I want to add another HDD, is all.

    With these Adjustments (580 instead of 590, and 850W instead of 1050W) this takes the price to £1862 (the biggest budget cut being the GPU)

    As for the 2500K option, I do quite a lot of photo and video editing, not HUGE amounts, but enough to appreciate faster rendering and conversion. No idea if these programs take advantage of the 2600K, but I'd certainly hope so.

    From what has been said, extra cooling is a must, so; with the Gelid Tranquillo Quiet CPU Cooler, the total build cost comes to around £1,885.

    Does this sound like a fairer build?

    [edit] This is only a budget that I'm saving for. I'm going to assume that CPU's will go down in price, along with GPU's. Hopefully everything else too. But assuming that if £1,900 is going to get me something really nice now, it'll get me something REALLY nice in a few months time... [/edit]
     
    Last edited: 4 Jan 2012
  18. Tangster

    Tangster Butt-kicking for goodness!

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    The 2700K is just a slightly higher clocked 2600K, not generally worth the price premium when the difference can be made up for by a light overclock.
     
  19. BloodlessDawn

    BloodlessDawn I know nothing.

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    With this post in mind... Should I delve into the world of overclocking? I consider myself to be computer "capable". The fact that I built my last and I'm going to build my next shows I'm at least interested in them, if not reasonably competent. I've never overclocked in the past because I'm just afraid that I'm going to break my computer. To you seasoned veterans this might be really silly, and frankly, I'm going to guess that motherboards have safety guards to stop a computer from being fully "broken". But still... I'm rather nervous regarding the subject.

    Is overclocking safe? Does it give real noticeable performance boosts? Is it easy?

    And last, but not least, should I go ahead and overclock my next pc?
     
  20. Tangster

    Tangster Butt-kicking for goodness!

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    Yes, there's never been an easier time to get into overclocking than with the sandybridge chips, you simply up the multiplier and then up the voltage. Bit-tech has a guide on overclocking sandybridge here, and there are far more guides on overclocking the 1155 platform on the internet.
     

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