Budget gaming PC advice

Discussion in 'Computers, Electronics, IT & Gaming' started by Random3, Sep 22, 2016.

  1. Random3

    Random3 SS.org Regular

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    Hi guys.

    This question probably pops up a lot but I thought I would ask here as I am not a part of any PC forums or anything.

    I have an iMac that I use for music production. I am considering gradually building a gaming PC to use exclusively for gaming. I don't need anything overpowered or expensive, just something to run newer games at a decent frame rate and graphical settings.

    After watching/reading a bit about budget gaming PCs I came up with the following list. If any of this looks wildly wrong please let me know!

    CPU: Intel Dual Core i3-6100T 3.2GHz - £90
    Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z170N Wi-Fi - £116
    RAM: HyperX Fury 8GB - £38
    HDD: WD Blue 1TB - £42
    SSD: Crucial BX100 250GB - £80
    Power: Corsair CP-9020047-UK Builder Series CX500 500W - £43
    Case: CiT Goblin Mesh Gaming Case - £26
    OS: Windows 10 - £86
    Monitor: BenQ RL2455HM 24" - £119

    I would also get a keyboard, mouse and headset, but the core build would cost me £640 which seems to be the price mark for what I want.

    Any suggestions? Advice?
     
  2. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    If it's for gaming, you're missing a video card. I'd guess the Intel HD stuff you get from your processor will maaaaaaaybe play some recent games, but I probably wouldn't bet on it keeping up with anything new at "decent" settings.

    I don't know the prices for hard drives any more, but I would look into whether it's worth splitting into two drives, or just get one big SSD. I find it a pain to manage two drives. :2c:
     
  3. Mordacain

    Mordacain 1-watt brigadier

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    It's not too bad, but if you're on a budget crunch, I'd nix the extra HDD and maybe go for the Pentium G3258 and just overclock the piss out of it. Granted, I'd need to look and see if the socket is compatible on your MB.

    Your main problem is a lack of dedicated graphics. The GPU is really where you should put most of your money in any gaming PC build. I'm not sure what the best bang for buck GPU is atm, but Tom's Hardware / Anandtech used to have articles that would cover that specific topic with the best performing card in a given price segment.

    You might want a slightly beefier PSU but stick with Corsair, Seasonic or PC Power & Cooling and you should be fine. I've still got the same Seasonic 750 PSU and it's powered a few different CPUs and GPUs over the last 6 years and it's still rock solid.
     
  4. Random3

    Random3 SS.org Regular

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    Thanks guys.

    Just realised I left the GPU off the list by accident.

    I was looking at: Gigabyte Nvidia GTX 950 - £132.

    Also the idea of the two drives was to run the OS off the SSD and save files and documents on the HDD. Never actually used an SSD but presumably I could run everything off the HDD and then if I decide to get an SSD as well to speed things up I could do that at a later date?
     
  5. Mordacain

    Mordacain 1-watt brigadier

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    Well, it seemed like you had another computer that was for other things.

    It's certainly not bad to have a separate drive for files, but it's not necessary on a gaming PC. I run a 250G SSD for my OS and primary games and have an older 640Gb for things that don't need the speed. But if cost isn't a factor than it's a good idea.

    I would spec up your video card if at all possible. Let me take a look and see what's best in the $200 segment. I would HIGHLY recommend not spending less than $200 on a video card if you want playable framerates at your monitor's recommended resolution with modern games.
     
  6. Random3

    Random3 SS.org Regular

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    So the video card is where I should push the budget up as much as possible even if it means cutting down in other areas?
     
  7. Mordacain

    Mordacain 1-watt brigadier

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    Well, it looks like the 950 is the best option at the $150 price point and to step up to mid-grade performance the Radeon RX480 at $230.

    If that's too big of swing then the 950 should give you decent framerates at 1080p, though you might need to keep details at medium or lower on modern games.

    The good thing about GPUs is that they are probably the easiest part to upgrade and it's the one that you'll upgrade every couple of years regardless.
     
  8. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    I don't know how it would compare, but I've been doing ok with an "old" 770 card, so a 9xx anything is probably fine, IMO.

    I honestly don't think the SSD for just the OS is worth it at all. Having your OS and some core stuff on a small drive sounds like a good idea on paper, but in practice it means constantly fighting to keep stuff from eating up that valuable space. Spotify, as an example, ignores your settings and caches everything you listen to in your AppData folder, which is by default on your OS drive. Browser downloads usually do something similar unless you specify otherwise. It's doable, but the benefits are small, and managing everything that wants to use that drive is annoying. :2c: Unless you want to spend a lot of time managing what goes where, I'd personally stick with one drive. Either go SSD all the way, or skip it until you can get a large enough drive for it to not be a pain.
     
  9. TedEH

    TedEH Cromulent

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    For the most part. If your goal is gaming, video card is #1, then CPU and Ram come next, everything else after that. Most games won't ever use more than 8gb ram, but a lot of games are eating up tons of dedicated video memory- so if you can swing higher memory on your video card it's probably worth it so you can crank up shadows and texture quality, etc.
     
  10. Mordacain

    Mordacain 1-watt brigadier

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    If you're focusing on playing games yes. The GPU is the most important thing bar none.

    In order of importance in terms of framerates and load times:

    1. GPU - Single most important component. Difference between framerate between a budget card and a performance card can be many multiples of 10x
    2. SSD - Not super important to framerates but will speed load times and any texture streaming.
    3. CPU/RAM - these two are tied together since ram speed is tied to the front side bus of the CPU. The CPU is far less important than most people think. As long as it is sufficiently powerful enough to utilize the full PCIe bandwidth than that is really all you need. There are some exceptions to that rule: RTS games for instance and console ports utilize more cores. Multi-core CPUs will become more important as times go on (as console ports become more prominent).
     
  11. MoshJosh

    MoshJosh SS.org Regular

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    Sort of sketchy but kinguine.net or com or org, can't remember, you can buy a widows 10 key for like 30usd. . . It's oem but works. . . Just an option
     
  12. Hywel

    Hywel SS.org Regular

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    £80 is too much for a 250gb SSD. They're £60 on amazon. Spend the extra £20 on the graphics card.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Samsung-in...1&ie=UTF8&qid=1474564986&sr=1-19&keywords=ssd

    I've got 120gb SSDs in my PC and laptop for windows and non-game programs and they've never been past half full. If you want to save a bit more get a 120gb SSD (such as the £38 Sandisk below) and stick your games on your 1tb HDD.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/SanDisk-PL...1&ie=UTF8&qid=1474565109&sr=1-16&keywords=ssd

    Also I think you want the plain i3 6100 not the "T" version as that is a slower, lower powered chip. The vanilla 6100 should be a similar price but 3.7GHz instead of 3.2GHz.

    If you can try and squeeze something like an AMD RX480 into you budget. Here's one for £199 and it's vastly more powerful than the 950 and should last much longer. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sapphire-1...UTF8&qid=1474565721&sr=8-2&keywords=amd+rx480

    Finally are you sure you need that motherboard? I don't think you can overclock non "K" edition intel chips so a lot of the features of that motherboards Z170 chipset are wasted. A B150 or H110 may be a better fit (although I'm not 100% on this bit so YMMV).
     
  13. Asrial

    Asrial Whisper into nose

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    Sketchy? Legal gray area is more fitting. I'd strongly advice against sites like them, as it's ebay for CD-keys, which is impossible to ensure are legitimately bought before harm is done.

    Rather pay full price than reduced price and support sketchy marketplaces. :nono:

    Also, build looks decent. But you sure you aren't going to step up to an RX480 or 470? Those cards handles more or less anything at 1080p flawlessly.
     
  14. Random3

    Random3 SS.org Regular

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    Thanks guys.

    Which, if any, of these parts could I potentially go used on to save money?
     
  15. ConstantSea

    ConstantSea SS.org Regular

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    If you could push the budget to go for an RX 470 or RX 480, you'd get much better performance than the 950, they are optimised for newer games and will give you more performance in the future.
     
  16. Asrial

    Asrial Whisper into nose

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    A good thing to consider is to fragment your purchases. If you are certain on your PC format, you can think about purchasing the cabinet, PSU and monitor first, since those are the least prone to obsolescence. You don't need to spend 600£ all at once.

    In terms of used parts, you could scour craigslist or the second-hand market in general for GTX960's or 970's. We've just had a hardware swap with the 10-series, so a lot of people are selling their old cards for cheap. I just sold my 760, too.

    Also, what games are you playing? Because if you are not playing graphically demanding games, our suggestions for the newer cards would be totally overkill. If you are just playing LoL or hearthstone, you'd just need a rather basic card.
     
  17. Random3

    Random3 SS.org Regular

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    Here are some of the games I either play currently on my iMac or plan on playing when I get a PC.

    League of Legends
    Hearthstone
    Starcraft 2
    Skyrim
    Cities Skylines
    Dishonoured
    Planetside 2

    Probably a bunch of others but those are some that I would definitely be doing.

    And yeah I am probably going to fragment it and go gradually. Good idea starting with the case PSU and display, I was wondering what order to go.

    After researching and watching videos the one bit that I am not sure if I understand well enough is the power supply. What do I need to actually look for in a power supply, or is the one I listed ideal straight up?
     
  18. leftyguitarjoe

    leftyguitarjoe Correct-handed

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    Modular. Make sure you get a modular PSU.
     
  19. tacotiklah

    tacotiklah I am Denko (´・ω・`)

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    Here's a crushing entry level gaming pc that looks sleek and can do skyrim with a crap ton of mods on at high levels for about 510 british pounds:
    http://pcpartpicker.com/list/nBGJnn


    Seriously, when the Athlon 860k exists, I don't ever see a reason to buy an i3. Ever. And the best part is that you can overclock the 860 to get over 4GHz of CPU power with a quad core CPU whereas you're sort of stuck with just two cores on an i3. Now in fairness, games tend to just run off of the first core only (core 0), but if you watch some videos from LinusTechTips, pc guru Linus shows you that there is a growing number of games that are starting to benefit from having more cores in your CPU. Case in point, with the newest expansion of Path of Exile, it's using multi-threading tech to VASTLY reduce loading times and damage calculations, resulting in much smoother gameplay overall.

    Now I know people are thinking that FM2+ boards are dinosaur tech at this point, but for a beginning budget gaming rig, you're gonna be hard pressed to find anything better at the same price point.


    The only thing that was "splurged" on here was the GPU, but a 380 is a nice card that can handle the games you're throwing at it with sufficient ease.

    I purposely left off an SSD for budget reasons, but that would be the next immediate upgrade that I would suggest for this build. Get yourself something like a Samsung EVO 850 or a Patriot Blaze (seriously underrated SSDs btw) and watch as your computer almost instantly goes from POST to desktop. Compare that to using a standard HDD alone that would take almost a full minute to boot, and well... yeah. :lol:
    Might not seem like much, but honestly, translate that to loading times for games and you start to get a better picture of why it might be good to have an SSD as an upgrade.


    But I stress that this build is perfectly fine for gaming if you have no immediate plans at all to upgrade and just want a straightforward rig to ensure that skyrim still belongs to the Nords. :yesway:
     

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