Console Kill For A Friend

I'm trying to get my buddy to upgrade to PC, where the waters just fine.

Price is obviously a concern bc we are somewhat competing with the ps4 on this one. I'm going 8350 bc of the obvious price to performance, and a 960 MSI 100ME for its obvious p to p at 1080p (Actual 1080p!) We'll probably be playing BF4 and various other AAA multi-players of that quality.

I'm a little concerned about the case and mobo. I just want to give him as many options as possible while minimizing cost.

Okay, with that in mind here's what I have so far:



Guys as always, thank you for your advice.

Just curious why you went with a 750 watt power supply when the total estimated use of watt is 354 watt.

all righty FIRST 960 imo IS A STUPID CARD (you can do better for that price), and second 6300 is cheaper than the 8350 and in game wont be noticeably slower

so here is your build just improved

NOTE: if you want count rebates (which I believe to be too time consuming for what you get) your build is cheaper BUT If your like my lazy ass and wont do rebates my build is LESS THAN $7 MORE and will CRUSH that 960

First off it was a really good deal and EVGA makes good PSU's. I wanted to leave some head room for overclocking, multiple gpu's and accessories. Plus, it's semi modular.

After reading your above comment I threw the PSU back in

The is fine for what he needs, and works really well at ultra settings with the filters turned down. Did you know they even support 4k? It is a cheap card with limitations, but I'm recommending this one so he can grab a Sapphire 290x 4gb tri-x or even a 8gb Vapor-x when they drop in price.

The 6300 just isn't going to help him going forward. The 8350 has the best p to p according to Logan and Linus.

Totally with you on the rebates.

And in the end, I just like this guys advice :)

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EVGA's NEX lineup leaves something to be desired in terms of performance when compared to other units.  This is why the NEX lineup tends to be a bit cheaper than the rest.

Really mediocre voltage regulation

As stated above, I'm not a huge fan of that power supply.

The motherboard is also a bit on the weak side for a FX-8350.

I also find the GTX 960 to be a rather disappointing card, and much better options can be had at the $200 price range.  SLI performance only slightly edges out the GTX 970 as well.

What performs better at this price range? 

Come on noob, maxi need pp links ;)

I've been getting lazy since the pp user interface overhaul.  I used to be much more efficient on the old layout :P

I'd do something like that if I was building around a 8350.  I personally prefer Intel since most games in Windows would benefit from the stronger per-core performance, but it may be tight at this budget.  I'd have to grab a B85 + non-K i5 to get it in the budget.

I would consider an Athlon 860k, especially for a console killer. for any who say it's not powerful enough It outperforms my Phenom II 940 in every way and I game 1080p no problem with that and my 660Ti at more than reasonable settings. the FM2 platform gets discarded as APU nonsense but I love it at its price point A88x mobos start at $60, and the cpu itself is $80 thats a lot of extra cash for a gpu. a vast majority of games dont even utilize more than 4 cores.

This is indeed a pretty good route as well, since single core performance of the 860k should be slightly better than the FX-8350(due to a die shrink - not sure how much the 8350's larger cache would help).

However, you still need to keep in mind that the 860k still uses the 2module/4integer core type of system, and is still no powerhouse.

Yeah. I've been curious about those apu builds, but i just think the 8350 is a more solid processor; taking him into the next couple of years at least.

It may be a budget build, but I don't want it to be a slouch.

Here's an i5 route:


stick with AMD. Use Kaveri and stick the whole thing in a KVM under Linux. It will perform better than Windows on bare metal. It will also perform on par with an i5 or i7 quad. Linux does not care about IPC for the most part. It has much much better scaling. Sure, an 8350 would improve the experience under KVM due to more cores but you would need a second GPU. It could be something like an R7 240 or 250. Does not need to be something beefy. Even a Radeon HD 5450 would do the trick. The KVM would do hardware level PCI/GPU pass-through of the GPU and CPU hardware to the Guest OS in the KVM. The primary GPU would be used by the guest OS and the secondary GPU by the host OS. The windows VM would get the benefit of the superior network stack in Linux as well as get the added benefit of the the snapshots for recovery purposes.

It is a good idea to have roughly double the estimated wattage needed in the PSU. This allows the PSU to operate at maximum efficiency (somewhere around 65% load). It also allows for expansion in the future.

Here is an example build. The CPU is still the 8350, the cooler is a noctua NH-D14 to allow for a large Overclocking margin. It has 2 GPUs. 1x 280X which handedly beats the 960, and 1x passively cooled 5450. The HDD is 2TB and the Case is compatible with both the GPU and cooler. The motherboard is excellent and the RAM is ample. there is enough to provide 8GB between both the Host OS and the Guest OS. The PSU is Gold rated and the Same one I currently use.

PCPartPicker part list:

Price breakdown by merchant:

  • CPU: AMD FX-8350 4.0GHz 8-Core Processor  ($163.98 @ OutletPC)
  • CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14 65.0 CFM CPU Cooler  ($74.69 @ OutletPC)
  • Motherboard: Asus M5A99FX PRO R2.0 ATX AM3+ Motherboard  ($107.98 @ Newegg)
  • Memory: A-Data XPG V1.0 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory  ($105.98 @ Newegg)
  • Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive  ($71.88 @ OutletPC)
  • Video Card: Sapphire Radeon R9 280X 3GB Video Card  ($192.98 @ Newegg)
  • Case: DIYPC Mirage-D1-Y ATX Mid Tower Case  ($49.79 @ Newegg)
  • Power Supply: Corsair Professional 750W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply  ($79.99 @ Newegg)
  • Other:  XFX HD545XCLH2 Radeon HD 5450 2GB 64-Bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 HDCP Ready Plug-in CardLow-profile Video Card ($45.51)

Total: $892.78
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-02-23 04:36 EST-0500

Dude, that's quite a powerful build. I think it blasts way past the requirements and probably blows the budget somewhat :-)

I'd also caution against Linux/KVM/Windows builds for people new to gaming on PC. Even with a standard Win 8.1 Build with Steam things are already more complicated than using an XBONE or PS4. Adding virtualsiation into the mix could well switch someone off if all they want to do is game. They need stepping stones to utopia.

For a portable console beating build I would stick with an 860k, ITX case and mobo, 8GB 1866+ DDR3 Ram and an R9 285/280X or other cards if prefered. If the games they are interested in are available on Linux then Ubuntu over Win 8.1 is a good option as its simple to use and well supported. If they are happy with a larger case and/or extra budget then an FX 8350 or an Intel chip could be a great choice.

It is actually quite simple to do a Linux KVM with Windows. heck, OpenSuse 13.2 has Hypervisor wizard right in the YAST control panel. It walks you right through setting it up. It installs everything needed to do a KVM. It is truly simple to do. Also, Steam is FAR from complicated.