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Build Guide

Great Gaming Build

by ThoughtA

34
96 Comments

Description

CPU

At this budget, we're running an Intel i5-7500. Any modern i5 will perform admirably for nearly all gaming needs. The i5-7500 includes a stock cooler, so 3rd-party cooler isn't necessary. Since we aren't overclocking our CPU, the stock cooler will be sufficient in keeping temperatures acceptable.

Motherboard

We're using a parametric filter to constantly select the best-priced motherboard while meeting selected criteria. In this case, we are filtering for B250 chipsets and 4 DDR4 DIMM slots for future expansion. The compatibility engine will filter out anything not compatible with the build. The motherboards are also capable of using the CPU's integrated GPU, in case you need to RMA your GPU or are waiting for a sale or upgrade.

Memory

Memory needs are slowly but constantly increasing, and we want to stay ahead of the curve. To this end we're using a parametric filter to choose a 16GB kit of memory within Intel's recommended specifications at the best price. The filter will only select 2x8GB kits, allowing us to leave room for extra DIMMs for future expansion.

Storage

We're use parametric filters to incorporate an SSD with at least 480GB of space and a minimum of 2TB 7200RPM mechanical storage. Everyone's storage needs differs, so feel free to change those capacities to your heart's desire.

GPU

For our GPU, the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 is one of the best price for performance cards on the market and an absolute powerhouse. The GTX 1070 will provide a consistent 60fps on many demanding games like Battlefield 4 (and hopefully the upcoming Battlefield 1) at Ultra at 1080p, and even 1440p for some games like Shadow of Mordor. For those interested in VR, the GTX 1070 will have no problem playing any and and all applications currently on the market.

The filter also avoids video cards that are considered "mini" length, as those will not cool as effectively or quietly, and the small savings to be had with them isn't really worth it with this budget.

You can choose to use this filter instead, if you want to include the smaller cards for any reason.

Case

The build will be housed in the Deepcool DUKASE WHV2 mid tower. The DUKASE WHV2 features 1 USB 2.0 and 1 USB 3.0 front panel and has room for video cards of any length. It includes a PSU shroud to hide unsightly cables, two 5.25" external bays, plenty of bays for storage drives, and it has a cool channel specifically for installing an LED strip. There are also plenty of cable management holes.

If you're interested, there's also a black version of the case.

PSU

For our power supply, we're using a parametric selection of a five well-reviewed semi or fully modular units, all of which are 80+ Bronze certified or above and can provide plenty of power for this build.

Part List Customize This Part List

Compatibility Check: No issues/incompatibilities found.

Estimated Wattage: 346W
Component Selection Base Promo Shipping Tax Price Where
CPU $259.75 $259.75 shopRBC Buy
Motherboard $94.00 $94.00 Vuugo Buy
Memory
From parametric filter
  • Type: 288-pin DIMM
  • Size: 16GB (2x8GB)
$114.99 $114.99 Newegg Canada Buy
Storage
From parametric filter
  • Capacity: 480GB - 10TB
  • Type: SSD
  • Interface: SATA 6 Gb/s
  • Form Factor: 2.5"
$143.00 $143.00 Vuugo Buy
From parametric filter
  • Capacity: 2TB - 10TB
  • Type: 7200RPM
  • Interface: SATA 3 Gb/s, SATA 6 Gb/s
  • Form Factor: 3.5"
$80.29 $80.29 Amazon Canada Buy
Video Card
From parametric filter
  • Chipset: GeForce GTX 1070
  • Length: 224mm - 403mm
$519.99 -$20.00 $5.99 $505.98 NCIX Buy
$20.00 mail-in rebate
Case $74.99 $74.99 Newegg Canada Buy
Power Supply $85.54 $85.54 shopRBC Buy
Other $39.98 $5.99 $45.97 NCIX Buy
Base Total: $1412.53
Mail-in Rebates: -$20.00
Shipping: $11.98
Total: $1404.51
* Using your selected merchants and only including nearby in-store pickup prices)
* Some physical dimension restrictions cannot (yet) be automatically checked, such as cpu cooler / RAM clearance with modules using tall heat spreaders.

Comments Sorted by:

GoTeamRed 6 points 3 days ago

I can't wait to see the AMD Ryzen build guides in March!

ThoughtA staff submitter 4 points 3 days ago

:)

Namnguyen 2 points 1 day ago

how about the build with 1080 ti in march?

scubadan 1 point 2 days ago

no really I can't wait.

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Namnguyen 3 points 8 days ago

Updated to Kaby Lake edition!

thank you

mdsmichigan 2 Builds 3 points 7 days ago

Description says 6500 instead of 7500 under CPU cooling. Glad to see these being updated!

ThoughtA staff submitter 3 points 7 days ago

Thank you!

Osaid202 1 point 7 days ago

Why don't we go with a better MOBO like 170 or 270 at the same price?

ThoughtA staff submitter 3 points 7 days ago

Heya, I'm not sure whether you mean H270 or Z270, but either way, those are going to be more expensive in most regions.

As for any 100-series motherboards, I don't want to recommend a motherboard that won't work out of the box. It's not an unreasonable option for someone to purchase though, if they're willing to work with a BIOS upgrade or can confirm the motherboard won't need one.

Osaid202 1 point 7 days ago

I meant the z270. Anyway I see prices as low as 130$ even in Canada and it is included in the excellent gaming build which is made by manirelli. Am I missing something?

Also I will post a similar question on your enthusiast gaming build guide.

ThoughtA staff submitter 5 points 7 days ago

That's not the same price though.

Osaid202 1 point 6 days ago

Well, not the same but it is 10 CAD difference (b250=120$, z270=130$). While in the US, b250 is cheaper and the difference is huge.

TheJayYo 5 points 5 days ago

Well the advantage of a Z270 mobo is it supports overclocking unlocked 'k' CPUs like the i5-7600k. Since this CPU is not overclockable to begin with, the main advantage of a Z270 won't be used.

Namnguyen 2 points 7 days ago

the prices depends on the currency and where you live.

Osaid202 1 point 6 days ago

You're right I checked the prices in the US and it is a 40 US dollar difference while in Canada b250 is more expensive that's why it is only 10 CAD cheaper.

jipster69 4 Builds 2 points 7 days ago

Yea... That's nearly double the B250 price.

Osaid202 1 point 6 days ago

Thats is right in the US

thelsmonster 1 point 3 days ago

I have a parts list that uses a z270 motherboard, a 7600k, 16 gigs of RAM, a 1070, and a little less storage that costs just about the same.

jipster69 4 Builds 1 point 7 days ago

Hey hey! You guys rolled out all the Kaby Lake updated Build Guides!

Thanks for all your hard work staff... these things really help others build from a solid foundation (or just copy it completely).

Memory

Memory needs are slowly but constantly increasing, and we want to stay ahead of the curve. To this end we're using a parametric filter to choose a 16GB kit of memory within Intel's recommended specifications at the best price...

Excellent decision! I recently stopped recommending only 8GB for all gaming builds, even on the tightest budgets. This was after seeing ENZO hit almost 10GB of usage (@2560x1080p). Was just gaming with a couple browser tabs and monitoring software running.

manirelli staff 7 Builds 2 points 6 days ago

I've been hitting nearly 100% memory usage on 8GB of memory at work. Time for an upgrade.

jipster69 4 Builds 4 points 6 days ago

Yep... I'm downloading more RAM now...

#8gbisnotenough

#feelthe16gb

#blackrammatters

DogBiscuits 1 Build 2 points 4 days ago

Literally just gained 42% more performance, thanks OVALTINE!

pegotico 2 Builds 2 points 4 days ago

I recently stopped recommending only 8GB for all gaming builds

Exactly.. makes little sense to get 8gb if budget permits to get 16gb. Worst case scenario 1X8gb so its easy to upgrade with an identical dimm. NOw ram is extremely expensive, I bought 16gb of 2400 ddr4 for 59 bucks and now its over 100..

jipster69 4 Builds 2 points 4 days ago

I should clarify that statement... I would always recommend 16GB if the budget allowed, but used to suggest 8GB in the appropriately priced budget builds.

pegotico 2 Builds 2 points 4 days ago

:)

FLAME3443 1 point 5 days ago

If you were going to overclock the CPU, what 3rd party cooler would you recommend?

80-wattHamster 1 point 5 days ago

You may want to start with the Excellent Gaming Build instead. This one doesn't include an OC-friendly MB/CPU.

thelsmonster 1 point 3 days ago

If you were to use a 7600k I recommend the noctua NH-D15, the Corsair h 105, or the be quiet Pure Rock Slim 35.1

Rikitik 1 point 5 days ago

Hey, guys just wanted to ask something. I really like this pc but I think in 1 year time I would have to upgrade it so is the case big enough to fit in new stuff or would I have to take out the old parts and can any of you suggest me a good cable management cable stuff. Thanks.

Rikitik 1 point 5 days ago

I have a budget of around 3000gbp or 3741.60 US Dollar. I am looking for good computer wich i can streaming while playing GTA 5 on good settings but i want to save some money for the monitor.

80-wattHamster 1 point 4 days ago

Start with the Enthusiast Gaming Build and change out the CPU for a 7700K.

Rikitik 1 point 4 days ago

I Heard about the new AMD people say it's better and costs less would that do the trick

80-wattHamster 1 point 4 days ago

It might. We won't know until next month.

Rikitik 1 point 3 days ago

yeah ok il wait with my old one

badjazy 1 point 4 days ago

I meant the g sync version, not freesync.

badjazy 1 point 4 days ago

Why change the GPU but not the CPU? I understand the monitor part.

KinFresh 1 Build 1 point 5 days ago

Yo thanks for making this now i can just base $1000 builds of this

soule33 1 point 4 days ago

Excellent parts selections but i have some questions. If i was going to use the psu recommended here for about 3 years minimum and around 8-9 discontinuous operating hours a day. Do you think this psu will last that long since its bronze rated mediocre build quality or would have to swap this out for a good quality gold rated psu ?

ThoughtA staff submitter 4 points 4 days ago

That should be fine. Please note that the efficiency rating does not mean really mean much regarding quality or longevity.

WaldoTheRanger 1 Build 1 point 4 days ago

so, why update these right before the new hor-Ryzen? aren't you just going to need to update them again?

they are all good guides still, but i'm slightly confused.

ThoughtA staff submitter 1 point 4 days ago

Ryzen isn't going to be available for over a week. We'd already gone too long without an update. In this case, waiting an extra week wasn't justified by Ryzen being released soon. This especially applies to this guide and ones at lower price points, which aren't likely to use a $329 CPU no matter the performance.

WaldoTheRanger 1 Build 1 point 4 days ago

Ok. that makes sense. thank you.

raisean 1 point 4 days ago

is there any benchmarks for this build

Sneaky_Turtle_ud 1 point 23 hours ago

if u google benchmarks for the GPU you should get some reasonably accurate benchmarks

Kingboy233 1 point 4 days ago

Hey, will this be updated shortly (ADM stuff going on) And what OS aswell as monitor do you recommend? Best quality etc. Also is there any tutorial on how to build this? Oh and this build looks hot af btw.

c_henderson6724 1 point 4 days ago

Probably a stupid question but why do you need two storages. Can you just have one or the other, or can you possibly just get a 2 Tb ssd etc?

ThoughtA staff submitter 1 point 4 days ago

Cost.

You can choose just one, but if you go with a single drive, you're gonna end up with a situation where you can pick only 2 of the following:

  1. Reasonable cost
  2. Reasonble speed
  3. Reasonable capacity

1 & 2 means a smaller SSD. 1 & 3 means a large mechanical drive. 2 & 3 means an extremely expensive SSD.

c_henderson6724 1 point 3 days ago

Thanks ill just pay the extra money to get the two listed

raisean 1 point 3 days ago

ssds are expesive and harddrives are slower so a little bit of both is great

Orfsports 1 point 3 days ago

Hey I'm really new to building gaming PC's and I have no idea what I'm doing. I'm trying to start off with a prebuilt and go from there. I was just wondering if this build would be able to run ARK Survival Evolved and ARK Survival of the Fittest. Thanks

80-wattHamster 1 point 3 days ago

It'll handle anything currently available, ARK included.

Orfsports 1 point 3 days ago

Do you know what settings I'll have to use in order to get 60fps?

raisean 1 point 3 days ago

ark isn't a challenge for this build it will run way more than 60 fps in max setting

Orfsports 1 point 3 days ago

Good to know. Thank you

80-wattHamster 1 point 2 days ago

Here's one person's settings. Otherwise the High preset will do it.

Orfsports 1 point 2 days ago

Do you know if I need both storages or can I remove one?

80-wattHamster 1 point 2 days ago

Taking out a storage device is an option. I'd suggest keeping the SSD if you do; that'll avoid the hassle of migrating or reinstalling the OS should you add an HDD later. Reducing drive sizes is also possible. Removing the HDD and replacing the SSD with a 120GB model save about the same amount of money. Going with a 1TB HDD rather than 2TB nets another ~$15. My best suggestion, however, is a 240GB/1TB combo.

Jellyfish2k16 1 point 3 days ago

So I started working on buying this PC before the case got updated and it said that the previous case had a problem with blocking some drive bays out with the GTX 1070. Will this be a problem or can I keep the case I've already bought? If needed i have a screenshot of the previous part list before it was updated.

80-wattHamster 1 point 3 days ago

Do you have the Eclipse P400s from Revision 7? Cards longer than about 11" will require you to take out the lower cage. There are plenty of 1070s short enough that you can leave the cage in place.

Skimby 1 point 3 days ago

Does the case come with fans?

raisean 1 point 3 days ago

yes

atcolem 1 Build 1 point 3 days ago

Why a Micro-ATX for a Mid-Tower?

ThoughtA staff submitter 1 point 1 day ago

It saves money without really cutting much out.

fizzygswag 1 point 3 days ago

Theres no possibility of that i5 bottlenecking the GPU, correct? And probably a stupid question, but if I cant get an Ethernet cable, I'm going to need a wireless chip, correct? If so what would you recommend?

Thinking of making this build myself.

OneCellJoe 1 point 2 days ago

Is there some sort of video or in-depth description on how to build this or anything similar?

DeanChillmaid 1 point 1 day ago

I would also like to know, or any tips for building it, I've ordered most of these parts, just have a different case (the one from the excellent build) a different SSD and an added wireless t link card

Fazza 1 point 2 days ago

why a micro ATX motherboard??????

ThoughtA staff submitter 1 point 1 day ago

It saves some money without really losing much.

Sowryn 1 point 1 day ago

What other SSD's would you recommend for this build? The one listed is currently out of stock and ships in about 2 months. Looking for something that would hopefully be similar while also in stock.

Sowryn 1 point 22 hours ago

UPDATE: I went ahead and ordered a slightly better SSD that was labeled as compatible with this current build. My question now is whether this case comes with a place for the SSD or whether a mounting bracket is required as a separate purchase?

patx73 1 point 7 hours ago

How do you get your operating system, is it possible to buy it Digital version ?

Thanks.

Skryptonyte 0 points 7 days ago

You could make this cheaper by removing the LED strips, settling for SanDisk SSD PLUS 240GB Solid State Drive (SDSSDA-120G-G26), just for the OS and maybe a few applications ( assuming the rest will be stored on the HDD ) and ASRock H110M-HDS Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ( may need a BIOS update considering it is a kaby lake there) and goind for 8GB RAM, which is enough for gaming. This probably saves around 150$-$200.

vagabond139 5 Builds 2 points 7 days ago

settling for SanDisk SSD PLUS 240GB Solid State Drive (SDSSDA-120G-G26)

They used a parameteric filter. That SSD would cost more.

ASRock H110M-HDS Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard ( may need a BIOS update considering it is a kaby lake there)

Why would they recommend something that may not be compatible out of the box?

jipster69 4 Builds 2 points 6 days ago

8GB is no longer "enough for gaming" honestly...

raisean 1 point 3 days ago

it actually is

jipster69 4 Builds 2 points 3 days ago

Not with "today's" titles with "today's" resolutions. It's not.

I hit 10GB the other day @ 1080p 60hz ultrawide while playing GTA V

Only extreme gaming budget builds... where pennys count... should you settle for only 8GB. 16GB is now the ideal amount. Yes you can get by... but if future proof was actually a thing (which it's not) 8GB would not even be close.

raisean 2 points 3 days ago

you're right i wasnt really thinking of the current tittles

jipster69 4 Builds 1 point 3 days ago

I would agree with you about 8GB depending on what tiles you wanted to play... but if you were building a rig today... I would expect new titles to excite you... and therefore you would want to be ready.

It was actually a very recent decision I made for when people ask for help. If someone insists on only 8GB for gaming purposes... they will get a warning/disclaimer from me and a 1x8GB dim recommend (for a future upgrade). Appropriately small budgets excluded of course.

rishigarg123 -6 points 7 days ago

I made a btter pc than this with i7 6700 for 1023 dollars

.blank 8 points 7 days ago

Should share it instead of bragging about it, haha. I think we'd all love to save a few dollars, if you don't mind sharing.

ajstnizzle 3 points 6 days ago

He's right.

_TheSilverSoul_ 2 points 5 days ago

He is lying

MeIs2Noob 1 point 3 days ago

sure he might of, without an ssd or a gpu.

vagabond139 5 Builds 1 point 1 day ago

I just love when people make a account, leave a stupid comment, and then disappear.

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Reason:
Note: Wattages are estimates only. Actual power draw may differ from listed values.
Component Estimated Wattage
Intel Core i5-7500 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor 8W - 65W
ASRock B250M Pro4 Micro ATX LGA1151 Motherboard 15W - 60W
GeIL EVO POTENZA 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-2133 Memory 11W - 11W
Crucial BX200 480GB 2.5" Solid State Drive 2W - 10W
Hitachi Ultrastar 7K3000 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive 4W - 20W
EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB SC Gaming ACX 3.0 Video Card 45W - 180W
Total: 85W - 346W