Hello PC world , Advice for a beginner?

So I recently have began looking into the world of pc gaming after numerous years of console and have decided that I would like to get a descent gaming pc for around £500 gbp ( ~$750 usd) and would like to ask any veterans to pc gaming to come forward and give advice to someone with a relative understanding in components but no major knowledge, thanks.

What knowledge do you require? Here let me give you some friendly advice.

Console gaming allows you to do what it says, game. Now sure yes there are the occasional aspects of social media or TV browsing but it is just for gaming.

A PC opens endless possibilities so in my opinion I'd say don't limit yourself to just gaming. Download some programs like Unity or Game Maker if your not very confident. Once you've built your PC, don't end it there. Keep looking how you can improve your PC, adding bits and bobs. Although you may have a budget for your PC, that doesn't mean you can't add later.

To start building your games library try out the weekly Humble Bundle, you'll soon have more games than you can shake a stick at.

Any questions feel free to ask

you got monitor, keyboard, mouse, anything?

I have no hardware currently , and I have been learning unity 3d on my laptop which im currently using but i suppose i should have been a bit more specific in that I need help in choosing a "future-proof" rig which will run games along the lines of battlefield 3 and skyrim , I have a rough rig thought out but would much rather that I took the advice of some experienced people in terms of pc builds rather than rely on my own knowledge of such matters , for comparison this is my current build idea :

AMD FX8350 Black Edition @ 4GHz ;
Asus Sabertooth 990FX R2.0 Motherboard ;
Corsair 16 GB Vengeance 240-pin DIMM DDR3-RAM @ 1600 MHz ;
from this point onward build compatability will be sketchy as I haven't taken time to check if they are compatable ;
Dual Asus Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 graphics cards ;
a 2Tb Sata Hard drive ;
Corsair CX750 Builder Series CX 750W ATX/EPS 80 PLUS Bronze PSU ;
Creative OEM PCI-E Sound Blaster Z Soundcard ;

anything else has been left aside as it it either not part of main budget (eg fans, case etc)

any recomended upgrades/ obvious problems? 

Just for gaming? Don't need that cpu. The fx6300 is enough, although if you get a gpu like 670 or 680 you might take that.. That mobo is very good if you want to OC. If you don't you don't need to overspend. Dual gtx650? HA! can't sli that, nor gtx650ti. only 650ti boost and upwards. you can however crossfire almost any amd card, and it's better if you get a single card isntead of two. 2tb more than enough. corsair cx750? NO! don't need so much power. don't sli. get instead the tx650. much better. why a sound card? the mobo as integrated sound. don't need. Case... where put put all that hardware?

If you can wait you could technically get an i5 3570k, use the 4000 graphics and save some more money up for a better video card later down the line? 4000 graphics can handle skyrim easily enough, so long as you aren't using too many mods

http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/N0jz you will be gameing @ ultra or very high @ 1080p on this >_> 

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor (£69.99 @ Maplin Electronics)

Motherboard: ASRock 990FX Extreme3 ATX AM3+/AM3 Motherboard (£86.39 @ Amazon UK)

Memory: Crucial 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory (£38.13 @ Amazon UK)

Storage: Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive (£39.99 @ Ebuyer)

Video Card: HIS Radeon HD 7850 1GB Video Card (£150.79 @ Overclockers.co.uk)

Case: Corsair 200R ATX Mid Tower Case (£44.60 @ Amazon UK)

Power Supply: OCZ ZS 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply (£49.09 @ CCL Computers)

Optical Drive: LG GH24NS95 DVD/CD Writer (£13.26 @ Amazon UK)

Total: £492.24

so to summarise, lower the core if only gaming, motherboards fine, get either a better single graphics card or better dual, lower power supply and no sound card?

the 650s are not too good for gaming if you are just going to game try an amd card, if you want nvidia go for a 670 single card is better than two 

the mobo is really good i recomend it if you plan to oc if the price is too high in the uk look at other 990fx boards  

keep in mind that the beauty of building a pc is that you can always upgrade. 

Sorry topic starter, i dont get realy  the clue here..

in youre first post you said a max budget, in the second post, you name a list of parts, but this list  is a  away above that budget i guess?.

 but i will look for a good list :)


STAND OFF's. On my first build I forgot these and my motherboard kept shorting out and I couldent figure out why. Oh, and if you have any problems come here or eggexpert.com. 

actually found the parts around my budget 

To everyone thats commented so far thanks a lot it's really helping me decide which parts im looking towards using, for everyone posting after this :

  • - I have no preference of core ( intel or AMD )
  • - Same goes for most othe parts 
  • - My main concern is will this build live up to a few years use of game engine use, high end performance use in gaming ( hoping to play both ESO and BF4 when they release at ultra ).
  • - Price is a moderate concern , but is still malleable , if you can find a built which seems to meet the needs I have specified for slightly more than £500 (£700 is my hard limit) EXCLUDING a monitor, keyboard, etc


thanks again for your time 


oh and to anyone wondering I currently have a steam library with around 40 games , most of which my laptop can handle , just with bad FPS , I also have Starcraft 2 and I am going to get diablo 3 soon 

Both ESO and BF4 will be quite CPU intensive. Online games always are and if BF3 is anything to go by...

so 8350 or 3570k would be your best bet really

Okay now i get the clue..

i found this, what do you think of it?


grtz Angel

well here is a £700 intel set up http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/N0Lc

And a £700 AMD http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/N0Q1

In my opinion, the best piece of advice anyone can give a PC gaming beginner is:

Don't look at marketing crap or enthusiast rigs too much, the grass is seldom greener on the other side, and in the end it's about the game. The choice of mouse and monitor have more impact on the gaming experience than the choice of AMD or Intel or nVidia and the choice of CPU cooler.

Apart from that:

Building a rig should always be balanced and start with the choice of monitor, and encompass good quality parts within your budget. If you start making compromises, downgrade your monitor and restart building a balanced rig so that you have a guaranteed 40 fps at stock clock speeds for all the games you normally play at the time of buying, so that you can be quite certain that your rig will be able to run all games at more than 30 fps for the next 3-5 years with a realistic overclock.

For instance: a good 1080p rig would be (I'm taking this as an example because for your budget it's the max you can build):

- a 1080p VA or IPS monitor of a size that allows reasonably high pixel density, so that you can play without anti-aliasing without jagged edges, for instance a 21.5-23 inch IPS panel which is about 160 USD, always buy these online with money back guarantee so that you are sure to have one with no dead pixels. Do not buy a TN panel monitor, because it will look like shit, the 3D function is very limited whatever anyone says, and it gives you a headache, the colours and viewing angles are crap, and you'll need a stronger graphics card, because on a TN panel you can actually see the difference between 30 and 40 fps, while on an IPS or VA, because of the pixel reminiscence, you cannot. A TN panel has a very nerveous image, an IPS panel is more calming and beautiful. There is no difference in gaming efficiency though, modern IPS panels have the same latency now as the best TN panels 3 years ago.

- A suitable graphics card for that is an AMD Radeon HD 7850 with 2GB DDR5 VRAM and dual fan cooling, an AMD Radeon HD 7870 with 2GB DDR5 VRAM and dual fan cooling, or on the nVidia side a GeForce GTX660 with 2GB DDR5 VRAM and dual fan cooling, maybe the GeForce GTX650ti boost with 2GB DDR5 VRAM and dual fan cooling, when those come out, will suffice also, but I've never tested one, that's based on specs only. Do not waste your money on lower graphics cards than those, I can guarantee you that it will not satisfy at all.

- A suitable processor for that is any full quad core desktop class CPU running at more than 3 GHz per core or the equivalent thereof, that means an AMD Phenom II X4 955/965 (which are disconitued end of this month), or and AMD FX6300 (six core with some shared ressources per 2 cores, which make it the equivalent of a full quad core). For games, clock speed matters, it prevents fps dips much more than branch prediction trickery or instruction optimisation or extra cores, constant high speed is what you need. On the Intel side, don't get a Core i3, it's not a quad core, benchmark performance per core means nothing in the gaming world, as I said, constant high speed is what you need, or you'll be having fps dips. The minimum Intel is an i5 quad core with a constant clock speed of 2.5 GHz and above, no dual core with HT crap or lower clocked CPU's, those will not game as well, even if they produce higher benchmark scores than AMD CPU's with higher clockspeeds. A game level requires a much longer lasting high data throughput than a benchmark, as I said you need constant speed of four cores.

- A suitable motherboard is one with a modern chipset (AMD 790 or 990 or Intel z68/z77) that allows overclocking. Overclocking is a must because it's nothing else than freeing the performance potential of the parts you've paid money for. Maybe you don't need overclocking right away, but if you overclock after the first year of use for instance, you can see it as a free system upgrade. A typical overclock on CPU/GPU delivers 10-15 % more performance, which means a game running at 36 fps without overclock will suddenly run at 42 fps, which might not seem that useful, but when a newer game comes out that runs at 27 fps without overclock, you'll want to overclock rather than spend money. The difference between 27 and 30 fps is much more noticeable than the difference between 30 and 33 fps. When looking for a motherboard, look for the features (what technologies does it support, SATA, RAID, USB, etc), the power delivery system (CPU power delivery phases, VRM type, but also the power delivery to USB ports for charging external devices, the power safety features), and the BIOS update frequency (it's pretty safe to say that you should always look for Asus or Gigabyte motherboards, Gigabyte boards work a tad better under Windows, Asus boards are also suitable for GNU/Linux). Some things are expensive details, e.g. don't get a 25 USD more expensive motherboard that's just the same as the cheaper model because it has a preinstalled heatsink on the VRM MOS-FETs, because installing heatsinks on the MOS-FETs takes about 30 seconds and the heatsinks are available in any electronics store, and even the fancy Thermaltake ones are cheaper than the price difference between the mobo models. In my experience, a Gigabyte motherboard with the "Ultra Durable" designation, is a very safe and wise bet for a gaming rig.

- Now something very important: get a good case and power supply. Don't pay too much for a case, but don't buy just any either. Look for a case of a renowned manufacturer around the 100 USD mark without power supply, that's mostly the sweet spot for a sturdy case that's easy to work with, keeps looking good over time, has plenty of expansion features, doesn't make much noise, and has good airflow features. Most good cases last a really long time, like 10+ years, so if you buy a good 100 USD case and use it for 10 years you'll have saved money over a 60 USD so-so case that you have to change every 3 years.One important thing: case that look very cool on a website or in a magazine often disappoint in real life, and cases that look dull on a website or in a magazine often look solid, stylish and timeless in real life.

The power supply is very important, you don't want your house to burn down, you don't want to get zapped by your computer case, you don't want to hear EMI noise from the audio connection, you don't want fluctuating voltages ruining your components. In my experience, the best value for money is Tagan or Seasonic. Tagan is not so well-known as Seasonic, but it's the best performing PSU for PC's bar none and it's not even that expensive. Seasonic has a lot of OEM production, so you could get PSUs from other brands that have Seasonic parts in them that are also good. Both Tagan and Seasonic use high quality very low tolerance Japanese made electronic devices and sensible traditional PCB layout and population techniques for durability and very constant power delivery at variable working conditions.

- Also very important: get a good gaming mouse, take your time finding the right mouse for you, the right size, the right shape, the right button click, the right weight,... with large TPFE sliding pads on the bottom and a high resolution fast tracking laser. The choice of mouse is a personal thing, don't take any advice on this, go try mice out until you find the one that's just right. A good gaming mouse will cost a bit of money, but - after the graphics card - it's the part that has the most influence on the gaming experience.

- Get a keyboard that doesn't have inprecise keys. You can start out with a 10 USD Cherry Keyboard, there is nothing wrong with those, just don't invest in expensive membrane keyboards, they are not worth it. Mechanical Keyboards are definitely worth it, but also a very personal thing that takes some time to select.

- Don't overinvest in RAM. There are currently no games that can address more than 3.6 GB of RAM per game application, so the chance of needing more than 4 GB of RAM for gaming is very slim. Get good RAM, that works on different frequencies and keeps up with any overclock you envisage. XMP RAM is often very compatible, even if the XMP function only works on Intel, but having XMP capable RAM is also a guarantee for added compatibility on AMD platforms. Always get RAM in matched pairs and insert them in the correct DIMM slots on the mobo.

- If you have a good case, you don't need a liquid cooling system. If you do need a liquid cooling system, and you'll know if you do, be prepared to spend about the same price on it as the entire cost of the rest of your rig. Don't get a prefilled water cooling system, you will get frustrated by it and throw it out after at most two years. Get a decent heatpipe cooler that's up for the overclock you envisage. If you're going for a 10-15 % standard overclock, get a top-down-blowing cooler, as silent and big as your budget permits, but if you're going for extreme overclocks, get a high performance tower cooler, as big as your budget permits, and make sure your motherboard stays cool. There is nothing wrong with using stock coolers when you're not overclocking, except that they will only last about 2 years, then they really need to be replaced, but you'll hear it when that time has come. If you get a good aftermarket cooler from a decent brand, those will last much longer and perform much better.

- connect your monitor through DVI-D, you'll have a better gaming experience.

- invest in a small UPS or at least a good surge protection device. This is often underestimated, until it's too late. This is a very important part of any gaming rig: the insurance that you will be able to keep gaming, even if some idiot from the power company connects two wires the wrong way or an elephant knocks over a transformer pole, or lightning strikes, or a family member spills water on a power lead, etc...

Anyway, all just my opinion, and someone had to take the time to write a whole bunch down...