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Build Guide

Great Intel Gaming Build

by ThoughtA

13
41 Comments

Description

CPU

At this budget, we're running an Intel i5-7500. Any modern i5 will perform admirably for nearly all gaming needs. The i5-7500 includes a stock cooler, so 3rd-party cooler isn't necessary. Since we aren't overclocking our CPU, the stock cooler will be sufficient in keeping temperatures acceptable.

Note: If you'd prefer to consider a similar build, but instead using an AMD Ryzen processor, be sure to check out our Great AMD Gaming Build Guide.

Motherboard

We're using a parametric filter to constantly select the best-priced motherboard while meeting selected criteria. In this case, we are filtering for B250 chipsets and 4 DDR4 DIMM slots for future expansion. The compatibility engine will filter out anything not compatible with the build. The motherboards are also capable of using the CPU's integrated GPU, in case you need to RMA your GPU or are waiting for a sale or upgrade.

Memory

Memory needs are slowly but constantly increasing, and we want to stay ahead of the curve. To this end we're using a parametric filter to choose a 16GB kit of memory within Intel's recommended specifications at the best price. The filter will only select 2x8GB kits, allowing us to leave room for extra DIMMs for future expansion.

Storage

We're use parametric filters to incorporate an SSD with at least 500GB of space. Everyone's storage needs differs, so feel free to add or remove capacity to your heart's desire.

GPU

In light of recent stock shortages due to the current cryptocurrency mining craze, we've updated the GPU to the more powerful Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080. It's one of the best price for performance cards on the market and an absolute powerhouse. The GTX 1080 will provide a consistent 60fps on many demanding games like Battlefield 1 at Ultra at 1080p, and even 1440p for some games like Shadow of Mordor. For those interested in VR, the GTX 1080 will have no problem playing any and and all applications currently on the market.

When video card stock and availability normalizes again, we will make sure to update our guides as appropriate to reflect the change in the market.

To keep the noise and temperatures down, we've updated the filter to include a minimum length to avoid "mini" versions of the card, which prioritize fitting into small builds, such as an ITX case. You can choose to use this filter instead, if you want to include the smaller cards for any reason. Note that smaller cards will be louder or hotter - or both.

Case

The build will be housed in the Phanteks Enthoo Pro M Acrylic mid tower case. This case features an interesting acrylic window that presents itself in a way similar to tempered glass windows. It can fit CPU coolers, video cards, and PSUs of just about any size, and you'll find 2 USB 3.0 ports on the front panel. It also includes a PSU shroud and several rubber-grommeted cable management holes to help hide any unsightly cables. The Enthoo Pro M Acrylic also has loads of room for hard drive expansion, and if you want a 5.25" bay for an optical drive or something else, it has you covered.

PSU

For our power supply, we're using a parametric selection of well-reviewed semi or fully modular units, all of which are 80+ Gold certified or above and can provide plenty of power for this build.

AMD Version

Here is the AMD version of our Great Gaming Guide..

Part List Customize This Part List

Compatibility Check: No issues/incompatibilities found.

Estimated Wattage: 336W
Component Selection Base Promo Shipping Tax Price Where
CPU $186.69 $186.69 OutletPC Buy
Motherboard
From parametric filter
  • Form Factor: ATX
  • Chipset: Intel B250
  • RAM Slots: 4 - 16
  • RAM Type: DDR4
$69.99 $0.99 $70.98 Newegg Buy
Memory
From parametric filter
  • Speed: DDR4-2400, DDR4-2666, DDR4-2800, DDR4-3000, DDR4-3200
  • Type: 288-pin DIMM
  • Size: 16GB (2x8GB)
$129.88 $129.88 OutletPC Buy
Storage
From parametric filter
  • Capacity: 500GB - 10TB
  • Type: SSD
  • Interface: SATA 6 Gb/s
$148.89 $148.89 OutletPC Buy
Video Card
From parametric filter
  • Chipset: GeForce GTX 1080
  • Length: 224mm - 403mm
$509.99 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime $509.99 Amazon Buy
Case $94.99 Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime $94.99 Amazon Buy
Power Supply $68.99 FREE $68.99 SuperBiiz Buy
Base Total: $1209.42
Shipping: $0.99
Total: $1210.41
* Using your selected merchants and only including nearby in-store pickup prices)
* Some physical dimension restrictions cannot (yet) be automatically checked, such as cpu cooler / RAM clearance with modules using tall heat spreaders.

Comments Sorted by:

o_b_81 6 points 29 days ago

With a 1080 and good amount of RAM, how much of a bottleneck will the i5 become?

MrFatPlum 4 points 29 days ago

bump

ray135 2 points 24 days ago

Not that much. It will in some games, but the 7500 and the 1080 are a good match. It would make more sense to go with 1070, but the prices for that card are still too high,

LatiosGaming 2 points 23 days ago

It would make more sense to go Ryzen.

ray135 -2 points 22 days ago

I agree, but the 7500 isn't a bad choice. It beats the Ryzen 1600 ins some games.

LatiosGaming -1 points 22 days ago

The 1600 should beat the 7500 in heavily-threaded games like PUBG with "use all available cores" enabled. The 7500 is good, I just feel like getting 8 more threads for about the same $ is better.

llCRAWFORDll 0 points 21 days ago

im thinking about doing this as my first build but im new to pc gaming and im stuck on the processors. intel or AMD!?!?!?! im trying to play pubg now and getting a whopping 8-15 FPS HAHA yea i know ive played like 20 hours and got 3 kills lol. i love the game but cant play it so im getting away from console and headed toward PC but trusting that these builds WILL work from what people say. Ill play games like PUBG and maybe the new COD when it comes out pretty much just shooter games just needing some help with what to choose. please hit me back with some info someone thanks in advance

mikesaidthis 1 point 13 days ago

What if I also do video editing (Adobe Premier and After Effects mostly) and would like to use this machine to do that, as well as gaming? I'm torn between this, the i7 7700 and the Ryzen stuff.

The_True_Inferno 1 Build 2 points 8 days ago

Get the the Ryzen stuff, productivity and works tasks scale well with cores, and the difference in gaming between an i5 7500 and r5 1600 is quite minute, both will have games that perform better on each other, so with the r5 offerring overall more performance, it is the safer bet. Better yet, get the r7 1700 if you want even better performance in rednering and etc.

mikesaidthis 1 point 7 days ago

Thanks! I think I have it all figured out. I'm gonna get the R7, just trying to figure out what to do with my GPU. I thought I had what I needed, now I'm torn between 1070, 1080 and the Radeon RX580. I'm only gonna be playing games in 1080, and would like high settings w/ high fps if possible, but 1440 and 4k are way in the future, if at all for me. I edit video (after effects and premiere) and stream gaming too. So maybe the 1080 is overkill? Again, thanks for the help!

Ironstone1 0 points 19 days ago

There should be no bottle neck, the I5 will scale well with the 1080.

MonkeyKing1969 2 Builds 4 points 14 days ago

By it very nature this is a build that needs only one video card, so using an ATX board and case is just adding bulk to the computer while making the case look pathetically empty. The concept of being expansible sounds good on paper, but is a pipe dream in reality with what you have. Adding a nice CPU that is overclocked a would mean dumping the board, adding another video card with the current CPU would not give good results, or having slots open for PCIe storage memory cards is a waste on such a modest system. That expansion most people would do would not be needing PCIe slots; so, the reality is they will be left open forever.

Far better to use the parametric filter to look for an mATX board and case. The CPU cooler and video card won't be floating around in vast case in that way. And, the reduced size and bulk will allow the computer to sit more places and be moved more easily. Modern mATX cases typically fit all of very largest of video cards, so that is no longer a concern.

ClayHawkins 3 points 25 days ago

With taxes and shipping, this ended up costing me 1395.05 US nuyen. Just so you guys have an idea what the real world cost is. That's 265.46 in Shipping and taxes. Your mileage may vary.

shadow31 1 point 23 days ago

nice

MMGx91 1 point 21 days ago

For a little extra($25) is it worth upgrading to a i5 7600k?

ray135 1 point 20 days ago

An overclocked 7600k is a big improvement, but you also need a cooler.

MMGx91 1 point 20 days ago

Yeah thats true but then again it would be worth it if you planned on getting a cooler eventually and overclocking it later wouldnt it im not sure but thats why im asking

ray135 1 point 20 days ago

The 7600k doesn't come with a cooler, so you should definitely buy one and install it along with the CPU. Intel expects everyone who buys the CPU to overclock and therefore have their own third part cooler.

Also, I'd go with a Ryzen 1600. It comes with a stock cooler, which is one of the reasons why it has a better value. What's your budget?

MMGx91 1 point 20 days ago

Im hoping to get it under 1500 but ive also been trying to consider getting a 1080ti and upgrading the rest later

ray135 1 point 19 days ago

If you want to spend less than $1500 then I suggest getting a Ryzen 1600 and a 1080. A 7600k is not the one I recommend, but it's not a bad choice. You can get either build for less than $1400.

If you get a 1080ti then it makes sense to get a 7700k or the next i7. The 1600 has a better value, but it provides less performance.

KingQuez 1 point 13 days ago

If your overclocking I would defenitely recommend a nice water cooling cooler, if you have the money for it, it would help out a lot.

KingQuez 1 point 13 days ago

Great build, but spending half your budget on a GPU is probably not the best, plus this is a good gaming pc, and only 500gb of SSD won't be much to store all of your games if your a person that plays a lot of games, I would recommend to downgrade to a 1060, and add a 1-2 TB hard drive.

williamcarvajal 1 point 11 days ago

With a 1080 and good amount of RAM, how much of a bottleneck will the i5 become?

LeBronasaurus 1 point 8 days ago

I don't know anything about computers, if I buy this as it is, is it finished? Like can I use this right away or do I need more parts?

Niklas_Heinrich 1 point 4 days ago

well, of course, you gotta build it first. but also, you'll need monitors a keyboard and a mouse (and a headset maybe). This takes another few hundred dollars, because the gtx 1080 doesn't makes sense if your monitor has the solution of a potato

Niklas_Heinrich 1 point 4 days ago

If I change the intel i5 to an FX-8350, would it be a bottleneck for a 1070? Also, do you have any suggestions for monitors?

r_king@live.ca 0 points 10 days ago

https://ca.pcpartpicker.com/list/7TRqtJ ,just build this, it is way better. You can overclock, it has more storage, and it will perform better in games and CPU intensive tasks. Also if you want to play PUBG the 6 cores will all be utilized giving you great fps. Your welcome :)

[comment deleted by staff]
Reason:
Note: Wattages are estimates only. Actual power draw may differ from listed values.
Component Estimated Wattage
Intel - Core i5-7500 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor 8W - 65W
Biostar - B250GT5 ATX LGA1151 Motherboard 17W - 70W
GeIL - EVO POTENZA 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-2400 Memory 11W - 11W
Crucial - MX300 525GB 2.5" Solid State Drive 2W - 10W
Asus - GeForce GTX 1080 8GB TURBO Video Card 45W - 180W
Total: 83W - 336W