Budget Intel Gaming Rig ($500)
Recently I built my first gaming rig (also my first PC build) with a measly budget of $500. The specs: Case: Antec 300 CPU: Intel Pentium E6300 Wolfdale PSU: Antec EA650 650W GPU: Sapphire Radeon HD 4830 HDD: Western Digital Cavier SE 320GB Mobo: Gigabyte GA-G31-ES2l LGA 775 Intel µATX RAM: OCZ SLI-Ready 240-pin DDR2 […]
25 June 2009

Recently I built my first gaming rig (also my first PC build) with a measly
budget of $500.

The specs:

  • Case: Antec 300
  • CPU: Intel Pentium E6300 Wolfdale
  • PSU: Antec EA650 650W
  • GPU: Sapphire Radeon HD 4830
  • HDD: Western Digital Cavier SE 320GB
  • Mobo: Gigabyte GA-G31-ES2l LGA 775 Intel µATX
  • RAM: OCZ SLI-Ready 240-pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800

Everything was purchased from Newegg and thanks to a couple combo discounts this build was less than $500 including shipping and applicable tax. It was a tough decision. For example, I switched from a NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GT to a NVIDIA GeForce 8600 GTS, finally settling with a AMD Radeon HD 4830. Fortunately, most of the components are overclockable; with the addition of an aftermarket cooler, I will be flying in no time. As an added bonus, the CPU supports VT which will come in handy for running paravirtualised guests under Linux and Windows XP under Windows 7.

Some thoughts for the future: In the next build, the OCZ memory will be replaced by the Corsair XMS brand and I’m definitely going to consider the Antec Sonata III case.

Update: My build is complete! Although I haven’t installed Linux on it yet, I do get a WEI score of 5.5 (highest is 5.9). I’m quite impressed with the performance of this build as well as the ventilation of the case. Temperatures range from the low thirties (celsius) (for both the CPU and the GPU) under a light load to no higher than 50 degrees for a high load.