Ok, now its time for a new Intel based Gaming build for under $1000. Like the previous AMD build I posted a few days ago, prices favor us such that we can get a substantially more powerful system than you could just 18 months ago. Here we go!
We start out with the same Cooler Master case we used for the AMD build. Its a good buy even without the $10 instant rebate.
Cooler Master Elite RC-330 with 350 W power supply - $49.99
Next is the motherboard - Biostar makes a very good Intel motherboard based on the Intel P45 chipset. Its a bit pricey at $159, but that's what you get when you go with Intel over AMD. For the CPU I selected the Core 2 quad Q6600. Its pretty affordable (for Intel) at $189. You could also go with the Q8200 at about the same price but some users have reported temperature sensing issues with that CPU.
BiostarTpower I45 motherboard - $159.99
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 CPU - $184.99
Now comes the RAM. Since this motherboard supports DDR2-1200 as standard, I figured we might as well use something faster than the usual DDR2-800. Affordable DDR2-1200 is not available at this time, so I selected some DDR2-1066 - its still very affordable at under $15 per GB for Kingston HyperX. I decided to go with 2 GB.
2gb Kingston HyperX DDR2-1066 RAM - $27.98
For the video card, I again chose the ATI Radeon HD 4850, with 512 MB of onboard Video RAM. Its a very capable card with about twice the power of the Geforce 7900 GS used in 2007's version of this build.
Sapphire Radeon HD 4850 512 MB Video card - $149.99
OK, next comes the drives. Like the AMD build, I selected a 500 GB Seagate hard drive and a 20X DVD burner from LiteOn
Seagate 500 GB SATA 3.0 Gb/s hard drive - $64.99
LiteOn 20 x DVD burner - 20.99
Next come the peripherals - monito,r keyboard, mouse and speakers. Because this motherboard has a 'better than average' Realtek ALC888S sound chip rather than the usual AC97 chip, I decided not to select an add-on sound card.
Hanns-G 22" Widescreen LCD monitor - $159.99
Microsoft Comfort Curve 2000 Keyboard with Mouse - $21.99
Altec Lansing 2.1 Speaker set - $29.99
Total price of all components is $870.89, with another $51.15 for shipping, for a total of $922.04. A similarly configured Dell XPS 420 rang in at $1339 by comparison. Even when you figure in the cost of an OEM license for Windows (whatever version you want), you'll still save a couple of bills easily. Who says you can't save by building yourself?
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