First time building a PC, components questions.

Hi there,

So I'm going to attempt to build a PC for the first time and have some questions about the components I plan on buying. I'm looking to build a mid-range PC that can handle new games but doesn't need maxed out graphics. After some reading I put together the below list of components and have some questions.

Is there any compatibility issues or any other concerns I should consider with these parts?
If there is any recommendations on getting the price down that would be great as well, I may not need exactly what think I need.
Would looking at used parts be risky?
What’s the degree of difficulty for putting together a system like this, it doesn’t seem too bad but I’ve never done it.

Picking the right parts can be kind of intimidating as a first timer, so any feedback would be great.

CPU: Intel Core i5-7500 LGA 1151 7th Gen Core Desktop Processor (BX80677I57500)
Motherboard: ASRock B250 Pro4 LGA 1151 Intel B250 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Motherboards
Memory: Crucial 8GB Kit (4GBx2) DDR4 2133 MT/s (PC4-17000) SR x8 Unbuffered DIMM 288-Pin Memory - CT2K4G4DFS8213
Storage: Crucial MX500 500GB 3D NAND SATA 2.5 Inch Internal SSD - CT500MX500SSD1(Z)
Video Card: Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1050 2GB GDDR5 128 Bit PCI-E Graphic Card (GV-N1050OC-2GD)
Case: Corsair Carbide Series 200R Compact ATX Case
Power supply: Corsair CX Series 750 Watt (2017) 80 Plus Bronze Certified Non-Modular Power Supply (CP-9020123-NA)
11 answers Last reply
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  1. Hi severian1047,

    GPU : You will be, really quickly, limited by the 1050... (look for a 1060 6Go)
    RAM : 8 Go of ram is a minimum but not very comfty now. I recommend to have 16 Go.
    CPU : You should consider looking for an 8th gen intel and their 6 cores that will help in a near future.
    MB : Simple and do what it need to be done
    Storage : OK
    Case : depends on your preferences
    Power Supply : If you want to upgrade later, it's ok but for this hardware, it's really, really too big.
    GPU+CPU+extra fan/ssd/etc 200W (maximum) so a 400W is enough.

    Feel free to give me a budget and i'll try to make something with it ;)
    What will be the usage? Gaming and?
  2. rodolphe.viard said:
    Hi severian1047,

    GPU : You will be, really quickly, limited by the 1050... (look for a 1060 6Go)
    RAM : 8 Go of ram is a minimum but not very comfty now. I recommend to have 16 Go.
    CPU : You should consider looking for an 8th gen intel and their 6 cores that will help in a near future.
    MB : Simple and do what it need to be done
    Storage : OK
    Case : depends on your preferences
    Power Supply : If you want to upgrade later, it's ok but for this hardware, it's really, really too big.
    GPU+CPU+extra fan/ssd/etc 200W (maximum) so a 400W is enough.

    Feel free to give me a budget and i'll try to make something with it ;)
    What will be the usage? Gaming and?


    1050 is good enough for 1080p if you start turning down settings.

    8GB is still good. Do not jump on the hype train for 16, if on a budget, 8 will do.

    PSU is overkill. A lower wattage better quality unit is recommended.
  3. What is your budget? (Keep in mind that your GPU and monitor are most important because they are what you see.)
  4. Thanks for the replies!

    As for my budget I'm trying to keep things fairly cheap, aiming for around $600, no more than $800.

    As for usage. Nothing too crazy I'm not a huge gamer but would like to be able to play some new games at nominal settings, something like Fallout 4 for example. I would use the computer for work as well which would involve mostly SQL queries and large spreadsheets but since I would be working through a virtual PC I don't think my PC specs would matter much for that (could be wrong). Outside of that it would be a lot of movie and music streaming, which shouldn't be much of an issue. I just want to make sure I have options to upgrade the components easy enough if I want to keep it up to date. So if there is a decision I can make now that makes things easier down the road that would help.

    I have a monitor, ‘27" AOC E2727SHE Desktop Monitor HDMI DVI VGA 1080p Widescreen LED LCD w/ HDCP’, Not sure if these specs would change things for other parts.

    Finally I did see this below build which had the right price but not sure if it’s the best way to go. Seems like its saving money on the CPU and Storage, although I like the idea of having a SSD.

    https://pcpartpicker.com/guide/8sfrxr/entry-level-intel-gaming-build

    Thanks again!
  5. You could build as is; I see no problems there.
    But, I have some thoughts:

    1. For a new builder, I think I would avoid used parts unless they come from someone you trust.
    You do not have the experience to diagnose issues nor the spare parts to try to resolve issues.
    But... yes, a good buy on used parts can save you money.
    Look to ebay and buy from a private user with good feedback.
    Ebay will side with you if the product is returned as not as advertised. Pay only with paypal.

    2. One rule of thumb for a balanced gamer is to budget about 2x the cost of the cpu for the graphics card.
    You are 1 to 1.
    If you have thoughts about a future graphics upgrade to GTX1060 or better, then ok.
    To be more balanced, look at a I3-7100. Here is a comparison:
    http://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i5-7500-vs-Intel-Core-i3-7100/3648vs3891

    2. If your use is for gaming only, 8gb is fine. But, if you will be multitasking you may want 16gb.
    Do not count on being able to simply add another 8gb, it may not work since ram is only supported in kits.
    Best to buy 16gb up front, or to plan on replacing the 8gb you have in the future with a 16gb kit.
    Any speed is OK, Intel does not depend on ram speed for performance.

    3. Love a ssd for everything. That is sufficient for me. But, I would go with a Samsung evo which tends to be faster and more reliable. Your motherboard supports m.2 ssd devices(size and shape of a stick of gum)
    look at them. 960 evo is a pcie device with better sequential speeds, but costs a bit more.

    4. Corsair CX(new version) is ok.
    I like the Seasonic focus line better.
    your GTX1050 can run on less than 450w. 450w will power a GTC1060.
    I might suggest the 550w focus unit which is good for a GTX1080 in the future.
    https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16817151189

    5. FWIW:
    MY build process:

    Before anything, while waiting for your parts to be delivered, download
    and read, cover to cover your case and motherboard manual.
    Buy a #2 magnetic tip phillips screwdriver.

    1. I assemble the critical parts outside of the case.
    That lets me test them for functuonality easily.
    A wood table or cardboard is fine.
    2. Plug in only the necessary parts at first. Ram, cpu, cooler, psu.
    Do not force anything. Parts fit only one way.
    Attach a monitor to the integrated motherboard adapter.
    3. If your motherboard does not have a PWR button, momentarily touch the two pwr front panel pins
    4. Repeatedly hit F2 or DEL, and that should get you into the bios display.
    5. Boot from a cd or usb stick with memtest86 on it. memtest will exercise your ram and cpu functionality.
    6. Install windows.
    7. Install the motherboard cd drivers. Particularly the lan drivers so you can access the internet.
    Do not select the easy install option, or you will get a bunch of utilities and trialware that you don't want. Drivers only.
    7. Connect to the internet and install an antivirus program. Microsoft security essentials is free, easy, and unobtrusive.
    8. Install your graphics card and driver.
    You will need to remove the graphics card later to install your motherboard in the case.
    Make a note of how the graphics card latches into the pcie slot.

    9. Update windows to currency.
    10. Only now do I take apart what I need to and install it in the case.
    11. Now is the time to reinstall your graphics card.
  6. As you are working through remote desktop, your "pro" usage doesn't influence the config.

    I made a build considering GPU prices are going to back to normal so the build is 100€/150€ cheaper than now.

    https://pcpartpicker.com/list/hLKGXP

    i3 8100 a real quad core new generation
    8Go of RAM to be able to go to 16Go just buying one stick
    240Go SSD
    GTX 1060 6Go 1080p 60FPS on a lot of games adjusting settings.
    Corsair - CX (2017) 450W 80+ Bronze
    Case : Corsair 270R (it's my case, it's one of the cheapest and has every thing you need)
  7. My canned budget build:


    ------------------------------ budget build ---------------------------
    For a budget gaming build, I like to recommend that one builds for future expandability.
    That means paying a bit more up front for some parts that allow for an easier future upgrade.
    A good rule of thumb is to budget twice as much for the graphics card than for the cpu.

    Let me start where you might not expect:

    1. Buy a good 450-550w psu or better. A quality 450w will run a card as good as a GTX1060 or possibly a GTX1070
    Future graphics cards will be built on smaller 14nm so they should not need more power than today.
    Look for a tier 1 or 2 quality unit on a list such as this:
    https://community.newegg.com/eggxpert/computer_hardware/f/135081/t/45344.aspx?Redirected=true
    Seasonic is always good I particularly like the seasonic focus line:
    This 550w unit is often on sale .
    https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16817151203


    2. Buy a lga1151 Z370 based motherboard. About $100.
    Do not begrudge paying a bit more now forZ370 which enables the upgrade to much stronger K suffix processors.

    3. I suggest a I3-8100 About $120.
    In time, you can upgrade to any 8th gen I3/I5/I7 cpu that you want and market the original processor.

    4. The intel stock cooler will do the job.

    5. For ram, speed is not important. Buy a 8gb kit of 2 x 4gb DDR4
    About $90. If you ever want 16gb, buy it up front in one kit; adding more ram is never guaranteed to work.
    Heat spreaders are marketing and generally useless.


    6. Cases are a personal thing. Buy one you love. Most will do the job for <$50.
    Here is a silverstone PS08 for $50; It fits a smallar M-ATX motherboard.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163223

    7. The graphics card is the most important component for gaming.
    I think a GTX1050 or GTX1050ti would be appropriate, plan on $120-$150.
    You could go stronger in the video card if your budget permits and your games need it.
    I like EVGA as a brand. They have a 90 day trade up program if you find you need something stronger. Read the fine print on the program.
    On the other hand, you could build using the integrated 630 graphics which is quite good and see how you do.
    By deferring on the graphics card, you will get a better idea of what you really need.
    Integrated is fine for sims, but not fast action games.

    8. Lastly, I will never build again without a SSD for the "C" drive. It makes everything you do so much quicker.
    Buy a samsung evo of 240gb or better; about $90.

    I think this totals about $600.
    -------------good luck------------
  8. Thanks everybody for the replies

    geofelt thanks for the building tips I will need them.

    Two last questions?

    It seems like I would be saving money going with an i3 instead of an i5 CPU any worries here or would the i3 be fine for what I'm doing?

    Would a 240GB SSD be enough for my storage needs? I really would only store some family pictures. I don't download any movies and I stream my music.
  9. severian1047 said:
    Thanks everybody for the replies

    geofelt thanks for the building tips I will need them.

    Two last questions?

    It seems like I would be saving money going with an i3 instead of an i5 CPU any worries here or would the i3 be fine for what I'm doing?

    Would a 240GB SSD be enough for my storage needs? I really would only store some family pictures. I don't download any movies and I stream my music.


    This build should be good for you:
    PCPartPicker part list: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/c47nQZ
    Price breakdown by merchant: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/c47nQZ/by_merchant/

    CPU: AMD - Ryzen 3 1200 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor ($104.89 @ OutletPC)
    Motherboard: MSI - B350 TOMAHAWK ATX AM4 Motherboard ($71.89 @ OutletPC)
    Memory: Team - Vulcan 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR4-3000 Memory ($97.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: SanDisk - SSD PLUS 240GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($69.99 @ Adorama)
    Storage: Western Digital - Caviar Blue 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($46.49 @ OutletPC)
    Video Card: EVGA - GeForce GTX 1060 6GB 6GB GAMING Video Card ($379.89 @ B&H)
    Case: Rosewill - BlackHawk ATX Mid Tower Case ($19.99 @ Newegg)
    Power Supply: Corsair - CSM 650W 80+ Gold Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($59.99 @ Newegg)
    Total: $851.12
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2018-02-27 18:07 EST-0500

    Has a 1060 and 240GB SSD with 1 TB HDD. Not to mention, the AM4 line has support till 2020 or so, so you can do a bios update and switch out the AMD chip for an upgrade down the road. 8 GB should be good for now. When you go 16 remember to buy in kits.
  10. I think that going with Ryzen 1200 is a very poor choice against the i3 8100 because Intel is faster here.

    I know the mobo is cheaper on the AMD side but does it worth it?
  11. Thanks everybody for the input. Right now I have the below in my Amazon list. Pretty much what geofelt and rodolphe recommended. The price isn't bad. My only other additions would be possibly purchasing Windows 10 if transferring my laptop license seems to be too much of a pain and maybe adding an optical drive, but I don't know if I even need to do that.

    CPU: I3-8100
    Motherboard: lga1151 Z370
    Memory: Crucial 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR4-2133 Memory
    Storage: Samsung 850 EVO 250GB 2.5-Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-75E250B/AM)
    GPU: GTX1050
    Case: Corsair 270R
    Power supply: Corsair CX Series 550 Watt 80 Plus Bronze Certified Non-Modular Power Supply (CP-9020121-NA)
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