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tr6scott

join:2002-03-23
Oxford, MI

Recommendations on $500 Gaming PC Build for Teenager.

My nephew sold his macbook pro laptop, and is wanting to build a gaming pc for around $500 in parts. He has taken his first stab at component selections.

(This post may sound familiar, about 6 months ago we had a trial run, but he sold the laptop yesterday, so game on!)

I used parts picker to input his selections. First question I had will be will the case PS handle the Video card? Is AMD the processor for games nowadays?

Thanks in advance for the help, you guys have always been a big help with these selections.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD 5350 2.05Ghz Quad-Core Processor ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-AM1M-S2H Micro ATX AM1 Motherboard ($36.55 @ Mwave)
Memory: Kingston 8GB (1 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($83.99 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($55.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: XFX Radeon R9 270 2GB Core Edition Video Card ($177.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Rosewill FBM-01-450P MicroATX Mini Tower Case w/450W Power Supply ($49.98 @ OutletPC)
Wireless Network Adapter: TP-Link TL-WN881ND 802.11b/g/n PCI-Express x1 Wi-Fi Adapter ($17.95 @ Amazon)
Total: $482.42
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-08-19 08:43 EDT-0400
--
The sooner we get behind schedule, the more time we have to catch up.


Tirael
BOHICA
Premium
join:2009-03-18
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
To be honest, those part selections are not the great. The AMD 5350 is a low power CPU. It was designed for low power applications (HTPC, general usage, and etc), not gaming.

As far as the PSU, for this particular setup, the PSU should be fine. That processor/motherboard is going to draw very little power from the PSU (because of what I previously said).

Still, we fall back to the components. They are not something I would begin to put in even a budget system.

Something like this would be closer to entry level:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD Athlon X4 760K 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor ($84.73 @ OutletPC)
Motherboard: Zotac A55ITX-B-E Mini ITX FM2 Motherboard ($48.29 @ Amazon)
Memory: Patriot Viper 3 Low Profile Red 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($74.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($55.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: MSI Radeon R9 270X 2GB Video Card ($169.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case w/450W Power Supply ($55.79 @ Mwave)
Total: $489.77
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-08-19 11:30 EDT-0400

Now, if you want my personal recommendation, I would go with something similar to this (if you are comfortable with some modest overclocking):

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Pentium G3258 3.2GHz Dual-Core Processor ($69.29 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z97N-WIFI Mini ITX LGA1150 Motherboard ($106.95 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($86.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($55.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 750 Ti 2GB Superclocked Video Card ($129.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Thermaltake VO545A1N2U ATX Mid Tower Case w/450W Power Supply ($55.79 @ Mwave)
Total: $504.99
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-08-19 11:33 EDT-0400

--
“Reality doesn't bite, rather our perception of reality bites.” - Anthony J. D'Angelo
»www.chaoticconfused.com

asdfdfdfdfdf
Premium
join:2012-05-09
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Verizon Wireless..

1 edit
reply to tr6scott
The 270 is a very nice graphics card and it is sensible, in a budget system, to give more emphasis to the gpu. However, going with a 2Ghz amd chip is a bit too downscale for what it is matched with.

Though I don't generally recommend dual cores any more he is better off going with something like a haswell based dual core G3258 which is $70 and has much superior performance even though it is a dual.

I also don't like the idea of going with a cheap rosewill power supply that comes with a case. He doesn't need a monster supply but going too cheap here can lead to a lot of headaches.

Firstly, though, we should get a better idea of the kinds of games he is interested in and the monitor that they will be running on(resolution) so we can determine the right mix of cpu and gpu.


Ghastlyone
Premium
join:2009-01-07
Las Vegas, NV
kudos:5
reply to tr6scott
I'd go with the Intel build that Tirael posted. I'd probably change the case and go with a Corsair CX series PSU. But still probably not needed.


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
reply to tr6scott
AMD is slashing prices on the FX processors next week, it may be worth waiting to see where they end up.
I also see that there's a Microcenter in your area, and that changes everything.

This will play just about any modern game at reasonable frame rates. The motherboard is free after the $10 rebate and that allows you to use the 212 EVO instead of the terrible stock cooler and to add a SSD.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor ($99.99)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($34.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-78LMT-USB3 Micro ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($0.00)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($76.50 @ Newegg)
Storage: Sandisk Ultra Plus 128GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($57.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon R7 260X 2GB Video Card ($114.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($57.99 @ Micro Center)
Power Supply: SeaSonic S12II 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $502.44
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-08-19 12:25 EDT-0400
--
Be kind to animals.


Dissembled

join:2008-01-23
Indianapolis, IN
Looks good until you realize you have nowhere to store your games. And why in the world would you spend an extra $35 on a Hyper 212?


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
For someone dipping their toes into PC gaming, I believe 128GB is plenty and he can always add a data HDD later.

The cooler is to replace the completely terrible stock AM3+ cooler; it sounds like a jet engine and doesn't cool worth a shit. I think it is money well spent.
--
Be kind to animals.


Ghastlyone
Premium
join:2009-01-07
Las Vegas, NV
kudos:5
said by Mentat:

For someone dipping their toes into PC gaming, I believe 128GB is plenty and he can always add a data HDD later.

The cooler is to replace the completely terrible stock AM3+ cooler; it sounds like a jet engine and doesn't cool worth a shit. I think it is money well spent.

With Windows 7 64bit and only Battlefield 4 installed on my 128gb OCZ, I had 27gb of space left.


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
Ok, so he could have a couple of games installed no problem.
--
Be kind to animals.

crazyinmichi

join:2013-10-16
reply to tr6scott
Hey, What do you guys think about this build

[PCPartPicker part list](»pcpartpicker.com/p/ZHtRwP) / [Price breakdown by merchant](»pcpartpicker.com/p/ZHtRwP/by_merchant/)

Type|Item|Price
:----|:----|:----
**CPU** | [Intel Pentium G3420 3.2GHz Dual-Core Processor](»pcpartpicker.com/part/intel-cpu-bx80646g3420) | $69.99 @ Amazon
**Motherboard** | [ASRock H81M-HDS Micro ATX LGA1150 Motherboard](»pcpartpicker.com/part/asrock-mot···-h81mhds) | $49.99 @ Micro Center
**Memory** | [G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory](»pcpartpicker.com/part/gskill-mem···l9d8gbxl) | $79.99 @ Newegg
**Storage** | [Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive](»pcpartpicker.com/part/western-di···wd10ezex) | $55.98 @ OutletPC
**Video Card** | [MSI GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card](»pcpartpicker.com/part/msi-video-···ng2gd5oc) | $144.99 @ Newegg
**Case** | [Fractal Design Core 1000 USB 3.0 MicroATX Mid Tower Case](»pcpartpicker.com/part/fractal-de···00usb3bl) | $29.99 @ Newegg
**Power Supply** | [Corsair Builder 430W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply](»pcpartpicker.com/part/corsair-po···ly-cx430) | $19.99 @ Newegg
**Wireless Network Adapter** | [Rosewill N900PCE 802.11a/b/g/n PCI-Express x1 Wi-Fi Adapter](»pcpartpicker.com/part/rosewill-w···-n900pce) | $35.14 @ Amazon
**Other**| Belkin F3U200-08INCH DB15 8-Inch USB Joystick Adapter for SideWinder| $6.99
| | **Total**
| Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available | $493.05
| Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-08-20 12:11 EDT-0400 |


Tirael
BOHICA
Premium
join:2009-03-18
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
Make sure to select BBCode under the "Format" option when you copy/paste from PCPP. Otherwise, it is hard to read.

The only thing I would change is the motherboard. I would change out the motherboard with something newer, like an H97. Some of those boards come with G/N/AC wifi cards, which are actually pretty good. It would also make the total price slightly (like $4-$5) cheaper.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: Intel Pentium G3420 3.2GHz Dual-Core Processor ($76.98 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: ASRock H97M-ITX/AC Mini ITX LGA1150 Motherboard ($82.98 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($55.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($144.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Fractal Design Core 1000 USB 3.0 MicroATX Mid Tower Case ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 500W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($29.99 @ Newegg)
Other: Belkin F3U200-08INCH DB15 8-Inch USB Joystick Adapter for SideWinder ($6.99)
Total: $496.89
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-08-20 16:51 EDT-0400

Before anyone says anything about the 500W PSU being "too much", there is something everyone should know. In order for a PSU to be 80PLUS Bronze, a PSU has to be 82% efficient at 20% load, 85% efficient at 50% load, and 20% efficient at 100% load. If you plan on keeping this computer on a lot (and gaming on it), then the 500W PSU is the more economical choice. Also, less heat is generated when a PSU is more efficient, which is important in smaller builds (i.e. micro atx and itx cases).

Now, that doesn't mean that you should go nuts with your power supply. You should pick a PSU for many reason. One of those reasons is efficiency. The PSU you buy should be either a) 10% over the max load of all components (to cover worse case scenario), b) 2 times the max load of your components c) your max load should be at least 20% of the PSU's rating (this also helps with future upgrades) . This ensures the least amount of heat generated and power savings. YMMV.
--
“Reality doesn't bite, rather our perception of reality bites.” - Anthony J. D'Angelo
»www.chaoticconfused.com

asdfdfdfdfdf
Premium
join:2012-05-09
kudos:3
reply to crazyinmichi
"crazyinmichi

Hey, What do you guys think about this build"

Looks like a pretty good build. I don't have any problems with it.


Krisnatharok
Caveat Emptor
Premium
join:2009-02-11
Earth Orbit
kudos:12
reply to Tirael
Pentium G3258 + discrete or just the Kaveri 7850K, IMO. The 760K can't carry it anymore.


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
I'd have a hard time recommending the Kaveri over a g3258 + gpu. You can OC the pentium on the stock cooler to 4GHz or higher while the 7850 is rocking the paper thin cooler AMD has seen fit to use since Trinity. Even at stock clocks, the pentium is going to destroy the Kaveri in single threaded applications and hold its own (and then some) in everything else.
If wanting to go AMD, imo thhe only reason to go FM2+ is to not get locked into the 'dead' AM3+ socket, but honestly, how many people buy into a theorized upgrade path and never follow through?
--
Be kind to animals.


Tirael
BOHICA
Premium
join:2009-03-18
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
said by Mentat:

You can OC the pentium on the stock cooler to 4GHz or higher

Do you have the G3258? On the stock cooler, 4 GHz is the max you will get before you start having heat issues (if you get that, trust me, I tried, and depending on bin) or noise issues (where you computer sounds like an ultralight taking off). The Hyper 212 EVO will get you to about 4.4 (according to most places) with less noise and better heat. I used a H55 with push/pull Noctua NF-F12 PWM fans and was able to get 4.6, but that was at 1.44 Vcore, which will shorten the life span of the CPU.

That all being said, I got to 4 GHz with 1.295 Vcore on my chip. That is plenty to give great frame rates. I tested Bioshock Infinite over In-Home streaming through Steam. The Pentium was able to maintain 60 FPS at the max settings over the stream (using an R9 270X).

Eventually, I went with a Xeon E3 1231 V3 chip. Similar watt usage (overclocked G3258 vs locked Xeon stock) with more cores.
--
“Reality doesn't bite, rather our perception of reality bites.” - Anthony J. D'Angelo
»www.chaoticconfused.com


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
Nope, I do not own one yet although I've kept up with the discussion about them around the net, particularly over at overclock.net
What were your temps? For the price of the chip, I'd have no problem running it at 1.4+ and load temps in the upper 80Cs.
As long as you do ok by the lottery, 4GHz seems to be easily attainable on the stock cooler and aftermarket cooling taking you into the mid-high 4s. 5GHz+ samples on AIO coolers aren't unheard of either.

I am going to build one sooner or later just for the fun of it, I have to unload one of my comps now first though because I'm out of room.
--
Be kind to animals.


Tirael
BOHICA
Premium
join:2009-03-18
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
said by Mentat:

What were your temps? For the price of the chip, I'd have no problem running it at 1.4+ and load temps in the upper 80Cs.

True, but we are not talking about us (I could care less if the thing sets on fire, as long as it doesn't fry anything else ). We are talking about individuals on a budget, who may/may not be completely comfortable with more than auto overclocking (most Z97 boards feature this now). These people also probably don't want to nuke their CPU (or couldn't afford to).
--
“Reality doesn't bite, rather our perception of reality bites.” - Anthony J. D'Angelo
»www.chaoticconfused.com


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
Indeed, which takes me back to the fx 6300 and a 212. Free motherboard with good VRMs, easy and safe OC, and won't get its feet tangled in multithreaded apps.
--
Be kind to animals.


tr6scott

join:2002-03-23
Oxford, MI
reply to tr6scott
Thanks for the help again guys! You are the best.
I'll post back on what he decides, think we are leaning with the intel build.
--
The sooner we get behind schedule, the more time we have to catch up.


Krisnatharok
Caveat Emptor
Premium
join:2009-02-11
Earth Orbit
kudos:12
Intel build is bad UNLESS you are going to overclock it. If that is not 100% guaranteed, go with the FX 6300.

pjfranke

join:2007-04-07
Cedar Rapids, IA
reply to tr6scott
I've seen many folks posting the WD Blue drives. I've had experience with those, and none of it has been good. Both in Intel based laptops at work, and an AMD based desktop system at home, there was frustrating hanging occuring. If you look at the "Resource Monitor" app, you could see the hard drive "x% Highest Active Time" peg at 100% for several seconds at a time, and the system would be unresponsive until that dropped below 100%.

If others report back that "yeah, that happens if you don't X or update the driver" or some such, well, I'd love to hear that. But my experience with the Blue line of drives as system drives has been quite poor. If you're going with a traditional disk, it's worth the couple extra bucks to get a WD Black drive.

One poster recommended the EVGA GTX 750 Ti 2GB Superclocked card. I second that recomendation. I put together a 2nd system recently with the 2GB 750Ti SC, i3-4330, and 16GB of RAM. Games well enough for everything I like to throw at it.

Related, if there's any chance of upgrading from the 8GB of RAM down the road, I'd start with 1x8GB, instead of 2x4GB. Especially if you're looking at a motherboard with only 2 RAM slots.


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
Why pass up utilizing dual channel now for a theoretical upgrade in the future?
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Be kind to animals.

JoelC707
Premium
join:2002-07-09
Lanett, AL
kudos:5
reply to pjfranke
said by pjfranke:

If you look at the "Resource Monitor" app, you could see the hard drive "x% Highest Active Time" peg at 100% for several seconds at a time, and the system would be unresponsive until that dropped below 100%.

I don't recall what drive I stuck in it as I have lots of random 2.5" drives around here including some WD blues but I have been having that same issue on my laptop. It's annoying as hell but I don't use it much to really be bothered by it. Honestly I've attributed it to the fact that I have Dropbox on it and when I wake it up, it gets busy syncing all the changes it's missed (it's usually asleep for days so it may have a lot of catching up to do since I keep my school work on Dropbox).

said by pjfranke:

Related, if there's any chance of upgrading from the 8GB of RAM down the road, I'd start with 1x8GB, instead of 2x4GB. Especially if you're looking at a motherboard with only 2 RAM slots.

This is exactly why I will not buy a motherboard with only two RAM slots. Your recommendation makes sense from am upgrade standpoint but personally I would just get a board with 4+ slots, run dual channel from the start and still not have to fully replace all my RAM in the event I do a future upgrade.

pjfranke

join:2007-04-07
Cedar Rapids, IA
said by JoelC707:

I have been having that same issue on my laptop. It's annoying as hell ....I've attributed it to the fact that I have Dropbox on it and when I wake it up, it gets busy syncing all the changes it's missed

Yes, yes it is. I bought a new laptop recently, and the drive inside wasn't a WD Blue, but was showing that same issue. Helped convince me to get an SSD purchased that much sooner. Your theory is probably close, but not exactly it. When your system wakes, and starts syncing, (ideally) you'd expect it to be a bit doggy...there's a lot of file I/O going on. But you can still *do* stuff on it, albeit slowly.

What this issue does, is the system *does*not*respond* pretty much, until the high I/O has finished. THEN you can launch software, open files, etc. I don't mean literally frozen, but it certainly feels that way.

Regarding the RAM discussion I sparked, I wasn't clear enough on it. The system I referenced building, I needed RAM in it to run, I knew I was going to upgrade to 16GB, but didn't want to spend that much when I was already buying everything else. Within a few weeks I had the additional RAM purchased and installed though. It made sense for me there, also because the system was on a 2-slot mini-ITX board.

But y'all make a good point, for a "Well, 8 should be plenty. If down the road you run into issues, then we'll upgrade"....type of build, might as well be sure to get a 4 slot board and go dual channel right off. That just rules out cheaper 2-slot micro-ATX boards and all nano-ITX boards.

Finally, +1 on the Hyper 212+ (or EVO) HSF. Have one, and it's very pleasant sounding, while allowing for a good OC.

JoelC707
Premium
join:2002-07-09
Lanett, AL
kudos:5
said by pjfranke:

When your system wakes, and starts syncing, (ideally) you'd expect it to be a bit doggy...there's a lot of file I/O going on. But you can still *do* stuff on it, albeit slowly.

What this issue does, is the system *does*not*respond* pretty much, until the high I/O has finished. THEN you can launch software, open files, etc. I don't mean literally frozen, but it certainly feels that way.

That's pretty much what my system does. I have gotten to where I leave task manager open as it (Win 8.1) displays disk activity and any time I notice it being VERY slow to respond (sometimes it does it even after I've gotten past that initial hurdle), I'll click over to task manager (might take it a little while) and I'll see where it went to 100% activity for a short duration. I'm honestly wondering if I might not have either some OS/file corruption or a disk issue that I haven't seen yet as every time I open an Office program it fails the first time (forget the error off hand) but each subsequent opening works fine (until I sleep it or log out/reboot). Might be unrelated but it's one of those "connect the dots" things I'm doing to it lol.


Mentat
Premium
join:2001-02-25
Sugar Land, TX
reply to tr6scott
A couple changes bring the 6300 build down even further.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD FX-6300 3.5GHz 6-Core Processor ($99.99)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($31.39 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-78LMT-USB3 Micro ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($0.00)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-2133 Memory ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Kingston SSDNow V300 Series 120GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($54.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Asus Radeon R7 260X 2GB DirectCU II Video Card ($119.99 @ Newegg)
Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($49.99 @ Micro Center)
Power Supply: SeaSonic S12II 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $496.33
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-09-03 12:30 EDT-0400
--
Be kind to animals.