View Full Version : Opinions and help for a new guy please?

27-11-2011, 03:15 PM
Hey, recently just getting in to pc gaming over the last year or so and having come from consoles I dont wanna go back lol So Ive saved up some money and would like to get a half decent gaming pc and would like some advice and opinions on a couple of things I've made on the cougar-extreme.co.uk (anyone know if these guys are any good or have recommendations for other sites to buy from?) they seem to be the cheapest I've found. I understand I could get the same builds cheaper if I built myself as I really have no clue how to put a pc together in pieces myself ( I would find a way to mess something up) I think this has to be the route I go.

I have about 900gbp to spend on this and I already have a 24 inch monitor. I really don't want to go over that amount unless you guys think it's seriously worth it. I'm looking for this pc to last me a while too but if an upgrade is needed here or there after a while that's ok.

Here's a build I've been thinking about if you could advise me on anything it's much appreciated.

> Intel Core i5 2500k Quad Core 6M Cache 3.30 GHz,
> 8GB DDR3 Kingston 1333 single module x2,
> 1155 Gigabyte Z68XP-UD3 - Z68 chipset - 4 x DDR3 2133 - Gig Lan - SATA 2 & 3 - USB 3 & 2 - X-fire/SLI
> 1000Gb SATA Hard Drive SATA 2,
> DVD+/- RW - 22X Samsung SATA,
> 1024MB GTX 560 Ti PCI Express Nvidia DDR DVI DX11,
> Powercool Vader Midi Gaming Case with Red LED Fan,
> Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro Rev 2 CPU Cooler,
> Windows 7 Home premium 64 bit

855 including delivery.

I've heard of bottlenecking, will this build hold anything back in any way? I am willing to spend a little more if needs be. I do plan to add another graphics card down the road. what do you think?

Thanks for any help and your time. :)

27-11-2011, 04:16 PM
No, that looks very solid. I've heard good things about SSDs though, with that budget it's probably worth sticking one in.

29-11-2011, 06:53 PM
Thanks for the reply mate. I keep being told by my friend to get an i7 instead... is it worth the extra money? For the extra I could probably get a gtx570.. should I be getting either an i7 or a 570... or do you think the i5 and 560ti combo is good enough. Whatever card I get I do want to be able to add another in the not too distant future.

Thanks again.

29-11-2011, 07:06 PM
Don't bother with an i7 for gaming - most games aren't that heavily multi-threaded, and CPU power isn't generally the limiting factor in performance anyway (that would be the GPU). Not really sure if the GTX 570 is worth the extra cash over the 560ti either, especially if you overclock it, although naturally that will depend on what resolution you intend to play at. An i52500k + 560ti will run any current games happily @ 1920x1080 with all the eye-candy turned up, so I'd probably save the extra for future upgrades (or buy an SSD to go with it).

29-11-2011, 07:39 PM
ok thanks good to know. Is it a good idea to get a pre overclocked processor? I wouldn't know how to do it myself... on the site I'm getting it I can change that to OC 3.30ghz - 4.06ghz max for an extra few pounds. Still under 900. The SSD upgrade seems to take me way above budget though :(

29-11-2011, 07:49 PM
ok thanks good to know. Is it a good idea to get a pre overclocked processor? I wouldn't know how to do it myself... on the site I'm getting it I can change that to OC 3.30ghz - 4.06ghz max for an extra few pounds. Still under 900. The SSD upgrade seems to take me way above budget though :(
Build it yourself.


Have a look here:


at the second Core i5 2500K deal. 380! all you have to do is add a graphics card (130ish) and grab a Crucial 64GB SSD from here:


for 91, and then just grab an OEM or upgrade copy of Win7 home premium for however cheap you can get it.

You will save a TON of money, and you will also develop some great, useful skills.

What you going to do when that 900 PC you bought pre-assembled craps out becuase of sub par parts and its out of warranty?

Learn the skills of how to make a PC and you will really enjoy PC gaming.

29-11-2011, 08:12 PM
I really don't know how and for my first one I think I'll just buy assembled and maybe next time try to build myself. Thanks for the advice though, I know it's a lot to be spending on something I could get for cheaper.

29-11-2011, 08:23 PM
Most places charge 50-120 for assembly, buuuuuuut they often give you a small discount on the components to make up for it, so it usually works out at 20-80 depending on the outlet and build specifics. You're no longer really saving THAT much by self-assembling. You also get parts that are confirmed to work (RMA is a pain) and a (limited) warranty. Most suppliers will also let you pick the part brands yourself, listen to requests if you can't get quite what you want from the store page and run stability tests for a few hours before shipping it out.

Basically, they've started competing with your tech savvy cousin et al.

The Tupper
03-12-2011, 01:39 AM
I agree that CPU strength is nowhere near as important as as a good graphics card. For example, I'm running a system that is so old I honestly can't remember: I think it's now 4 years running the same Dual Core 2.4Ghz.

Having been a PC gamer since 96-97 trust me - that's oooold. Come to think of it, that's old for any computing/gaming platform I've ever owned, and I go back to the early eighties.

Anyway: I changed my GPU about a year ago, and (despite having changed GPU cards many times in the past) it was the single biggest improvement to my gaming experience I've had. It seems to me that the weight of processing has shifted from CPUs onto GPUs.

Addition: To give you an example, I'm running Skyrim (on Windows XP, 2GB RAM) with almost everything (bar more than 8x anti-aliasing and ultra detailed shadows) set to 'Ultra' and it works a charm.

Addition (2): I'm running Skyrim on a relatively old display, though: 1280 x 1024.

03-12-2011, 08:54 AM
I don't think there's anything wrong with the specs you've posted but to echo an opinion above you should try and build it yourself - honestly it's a lot easier than you'd expect and it is quite hard to get stuff wrong these days.

'Back in the day' you could screw up because power connectors etc weren't always shaped to force orientation like they are these days and you could blow components if you didn't pay much attention. That's impossible to do now unless you put considerable force into it. By far the hardest bit is configuring the BIOS for the correct CPU and RAM speeds (this is the software bit when your computer boots up - 'Press DEL to enter setup') but even then auto-detect is pretty reliable and there are failsafe temperatures which will shut down your PC before it gets damaged should you 'accidentally' overclock it too much or forget to plug in the CPU fan.

Oh, connecting up the case wires (speaker, reset, power button) is always a huge pain in the arse because it ain't standardised but you can't do any damage with a bad wiring setup with that anyway.

03-12-2011, 03:43 PM
Thanks for the advice guys. I have heard it isn't as hard as it sounds but I'd still feel uncomfortable trying it at the moment...update on cougar-extreme. I emailed them on tuesday I think using the contact form on their site... no reply. I'll give them a miss if their customer service is like that. Shame as I have heard mostly good things and now the same set up on other sites cyberpowersystems, pcspecialists, wired2fire etc... is about 100 pound more. Can anyone recommend any reliable good sites to get a custom built one from?

Thanks for the replies guys.

03-12-2011, 03:51 PM
While I haven't purchased a full computer through them you may want to try overclockers - http://www.overclockers.co.uk/productlist.php?groupid=43. Some machines they sell come overclocked and with adequate cooling so you'll get more bang for your buck without the headache of trying to do it yourself.

03-12-2011, 08:30 PM
Just emailed them about one of their Pc's to see if it's possible to upgrade some ram, card etc...thanks again mate.

04-12-2011, 12:48 PM
that rig is looking good, I found the best way of learning about PC components and putting things together was actually building one with a really good friend of mine, all I had to do was buy him a pizza and a 6 pack of fosters. I'd say though if you can start reading up on PC components and how they go together, because when/if you get some errors you won't be tempted to take it to currys "tech guys" and they'd charge a small fortune to tell your PC was fucked.