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Author Topic: Good pre-built system for under $1,000?  (Read 1520 times)
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Gratch
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« on: November 26, 2013, 11:36:48 AM »

I've got a 4.5 year old Dell Studio XPS 7100 that I threw a GF 250 card into.  It's been a good system, but is getting a little long in the tooth and has started having all sorts of small random issues that are driving me nuts (video playback problems, Quicktime won't work, MS Office has to reinstall every time I try to use it, newest Nvidia drivers won't install, etc., etc).  Been thinking about an upgrade anyways, figured now is as good a time as any.

Problem is, I'm completely out of the hardware loop these days so building one is out of the question.  I've got about $900-$1,000 I can spend on it, wondering what the recommendations would be in that price range.  I can probably still figure out how to install a better video card if needed, but that's about the extent of my hardware capabilities these days.  smile

I (obviously) don't need the ultra-awesome latest and greatest.  This current system actually still plays nearly everything I need at 1920 X 1080, but I'm looking for some sort of mid-range-ish system that'll get me through the next 4-5 years.  TIA.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2013, 11:45:04 AM by Gratch » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: November 26, 2013, 11:20:27 PM »

Quote from: Gratch on November 26, 2013, 11:36:48 AM

I've got a 4.5 year old Dell Studio XPS 7100 that I threw a GF 250 card into.  It's been a good system, but is getting a little long in the tooth and has started having all sorts of small random issues that are driving me nuts (video playback problems, Quicktime won't work, MS Office has to reinstall every time I try to use it, newest Nvidia drivers won't install, etc., etc).  Been thinking about an upgrade anyways, figured now is as good a time as any.

Problem is, I'm completely out of the hardware loop these days so building one is out of the question.  I've got about $900-$1,000 I can spend on it, wondering what the recommendations would be in that price range.  I can probably still figure out how to install a better video card if needed, but that's about the extent of my hardware capabilities these days.  smile

I (obviously) don't need the ultra-awesome latest and greatest.  This current system actually still plays nearly everything I need at 1920 X 1080, but I'm looking for some sort of mid-range-ish system that'll get me through the next 4-5 years.  TIA.

What stores do you have near you?
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« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2013, 01:33:08 AM »

a 760GT OC is a great start, and gives you lots of room in your budget for an SSD, an Intel P5 (Haswell), 8GB of RAM and a decent PSU and case. Unless you care about BD on your PC, recycle the DVD drive and your old hard drive as a place to store slower access files.
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« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2013, 01:48:46 AM »

Quote from: Purge on November 27, 2013, 01:33:08 AM

a 760GT OC is a great start, and gives you lots of room in your budget for an SSD, an Intel P5 (Haswell), 8GB of RAM and a decent PSU and case. Unless you care about BD on your PC, recycle the DVD drive and your old hard drive as a place to store slower access files.
he's looking for a pre-built system which generally means little recycling.. That's why I asked what stores he had near him, to see what kind of gaming options he has for pre-built.
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« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2013, 02:13:53 AM »

Quote from: Purge on November 27, 2013, 01:33:08 AM

a 760GT OC is a great start, and gives you lots of room in your budget for an SSD, an Intel P5 (Haswell), 8GB of RAM and a decent PSU and case. Unless you care about BD on your PC, recycle the DVD drive and your old hard drive as a place to store slower access files.
this.
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« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2013, 02:36:41 AM »

Quote from: Punisher on November 27, 2013, 01:48:46 AM

Quote from: Purge on November 27, 2013, 01:33:08 AM

a 760GT OC is a great start, and gives you lots of room in your budget for an SSD, an Intel P5 (Haswell), 8GB of RAM and a decent PSU and case. Unless you care about BD on your PC, recycle the DVD drive and your old hard drive as a place to store slower access files.
he's looking for a pre-built system which generally means little recycling.. That's why I asked what stores he had near him, to see what kind of gaming options he has for pre-built.

Yep.  I wouldn't know the first thing anymore about building a system, much less troubleshooting one if something happens to go wrong (nor do I have the time).  Need something mostly usable right out of the box.

We've got Best Buys around here, but that's about it for electronics.
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« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2013, 03:16:06 AM »

Yeah, so get one built for you online.

Buncha guys here have some recommendations on "select-a-component" systems where they build it and ship it to you.

But honestly, with two-to-three drives, a decent PSU and a board is pretty tab-A/slot-A kind of setup.

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« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2013, 03:19:23 AM »

Quote from: Gratch on November 27, 2013, 02:36:41 AM

Quote from: Punisher on November 27, 2013, 01:48:46 AM

Quote from: Purge on November 27, 2013, 01:33:08 AM

a 760GT OC is a great start, and gives you lots of room in your budget for an SSD, an Intel P5 (Haswell), 8GB of RAM and a decent PSU and case. Unless you care about BD on your PC, recycle the DVD drive and your old hard drive as a place to store slower access files.
he's looking for a pre-built system which generally means little recycling.. That's why I asked what stores he had near him, to see what kind of gaming options he has for pre-built.

Yep.  I wouldn't know the first thing anymore about building a system, much less troubleshooting one if something happens to go wrong (nor do I have the time).  Need something mostly usable right out of the box.

We've got Best Buys around here, but that's about it for electronics.

Cyberpower PC was where I got my last pre-built.

http://www.cyberpowerpc.com/LandingPages/Microsoft/Windows_8.1/?gclid=CNjflPaAhLsCFQpgMgod0nYAkw
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« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2013, 03:43:04 AM »

Went to cyberpowerPC and built my "new" system (roughly).

1400. I paid 240 + 520 (SSD, DVD drive and second hard drive not included).

CPU: Intel® Core™ i5-4670K 3.40 GHz 6MB Intel Smart Cache LGA1150 (All Venom OC Certified)
HDD: 250GB Samsung 840 EVO Series SATA-III 6.0Gb/s SSD - 540MB/s Read & 520MB/s Write [+147] (Single Drive)
MEMORY: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3/1866MHz Dual Channel Memory (ADATA XPG V2)
MOTHERBOARD: MSI Z87-G41 PC Mate ATX w/ Military Class 4, OC Genie II, GbLAN, 2 GEn3 PCIe x16, 2 PCIe x1, 2 PCI [-10]
SOUND: HIGH DEFINITION ON-BOARD 7.1 AUDIO
VIDEO: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 2GB GDDR5 16X PCIe 3.0 Video Card [+199] (* EVGA Superclocked ACX Cooling)

(I have the MSI Z87-G43, not the G41 which is not listed there).

Memory Express will put stuff together and test it then ship it for you. It's where I got my stuff from.
Spoiler for Hiden:
*BASE_PRICE: [+815]
BLUETOOTH: None
CAS: Cooler Master Elite 431 w/ USB 3.0, Side Panel Window [-30]
CASUPGRADE: None
CD: LG 12X Internal Blu-ray Drive & DVDRW, 3D Playback Combo Drive [+32] (BLACK COLOR)
CD2: None
COOLANT: Standard Coolant
CPU: Intel® Core™ i5-4670K 3.40 GHz 6MB Intel Smart Cache LGA1150 (All Venom OC Certified)
CS_FAN: Default case fans
ENGRAVING: None
FA_HDD: None
FAN: Asetek 510LC 120mm Liquid Cooling CPU Cooler - Enhance Cooling Performance (Single Standard 120MM Fan)
FLASHMEDIA: None
FREEBIE_CU1: Intel GRID 2 Gaming Coupon [+0]
FREEBIE_MB: FREE Netis 802.11 B/G/N Wireless Routers [+0]
FREEBIE_VC1: Assassin's Creed Black Flag + Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Blacklist Game Coupon [+0]
FREEBIE_VC2: None
HDD: 250GB Samsung 840 EVO Series SATA-III 6.0Gb/s SSD - 540MB/s Read & 520MB/s Write [+147] (Single Drive)
HDD2: 3TB (3TBx1) SATA-III 6.0Gb/s 64MB Cache 7200RPM HDD [+135] (Single Drive)
HEADSET: None
IUSB: Built-in USB 2.0 Ports
KEYBOARD: AZZA Multimedia USB Gaming Keyboard
MB_SRT: None
MEMORY: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3/1866MHz Dual Channel Memory (ADATA XPG V2)
MONITOR: None
MONITOR2: None
MONITOR3: None
MOTHERBOARD: MSI Z87-G41 PC Mate ATX w/ Military Class 4, OC Genie II, GbLAN, 2 GEn3 PCIe x16, 2 PCIe x1, 2 PCI [-10]
MOUSE: AZZA Optical 1600dpi Gaming Mouse with Weight Adjustable Cartridge
NETWORK: Onboard Gigabit LAN Network
OS: Microsoft® Windows 8.1 (64-bit Edition) + Office 365 FREE 30 Days Trial [+104]
OVERCLOCK: No Overclocking
POWERSUPPLY: 750 Watts - EVGA SuperNOVA NEX750B 80 Plus Bronze Modular Power Supply [+56]
RUSH: NO; READY TO SHIP IN 5~10 BUSINESS DAYS
SERVICE: STANDARD WARRANTY: 3-YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY PLUS LIFE-TIME TECHNICAL SUPPORT
SOUND: HIGH DEFINITION ON-BOARD 7.1 AUDIO
SPEAKERS: None
TEMP: None
TUNING: None
TVRC: None
USBFLASH: None
USBHD: None
USBX: None
VIDEO: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 2GB GDDR5 16X PCIe 3.0 Video Card [+199] (* EVGA Superclocked ACX Cooling)
VIDEO2: None
VIDEO3: None
WNC: None
_PRICE: (+1448)
_view_: {AB2203AD-B3D3-449F-980F-569E514661AE}
_load_: 11/26/2013 7:20:24 PM
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« Reply #9 on: November 27, 2013, 04:35:19 AM »

<shrug>  wasn't sure how competitive Cyberpower was nowadays.
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« Reply #10 on: November 27, 2013, 05:09:19 PM »

Here are some decent ones. best to worst
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/xps-desktop-8gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/2873558.p?id=1219080297498&skuId=2873558&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=20#tab=specifications
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/xps-desktop-12gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/1746157.p?id=1219062510151&skuId=1746157&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=28#tab=specifications
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/gamer-xtreme-desktop-8gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/2541141.p?id=1219074179173&skuId=2541141&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=31#tab=specifications

1st one is an i7 other 2 are i5's.
There are more systems from best buy available for more money, but I kept the price down in case you needed to upgrade the video card separately...

Are there any good computer shops near you? or local tech support guys? If so, maybe they could build one for you. As mentioned, not too much has changed from building a system.. Biggest PITA is getting all the cables wired neatly...
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« Reply #11 on: November 27, 2013, 05:22:52 PM »

Quote from: Punisher on November 27, 2013, 05:09:19 PM

Here are some decent ones. best to worst
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/xps-desktop-8gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/2873558.p?id=1219080297498&skuId=2873558&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=20#tab=specifications
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/xps-desktop-12gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/1746157.p?id=1219062510151&skuId=1746157&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=28#tab=specifications
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/gamer-xtreme-desktop-8gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/2541141.p?id=1219074179173&skuId=2541141&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=31#tab=specifications

1st one is an i7 other 2 are i5's.
There are more systems from best buy available for more money, but I kept the price down in case you needed to upgrade the video card separately...

Are there any good computer shops near you? or local tech support guys? If so, maybe they could build one for you. As mentioned, not too much has changed from building a system.. Biggest PITA is getting all the cables wired neatly...

Thanks Punisher, that's helpful.  We have a couple local shops (PC Laptops being the big one), but they've always seemed crazy overpriced.  I've actually been pretty happy with this Dell, but have been kicking around the idea of an upgrade.

Biggest challenge for those out of the hardware loop is figuring out what components in these new systems are significantly better than what I have, especially when it comes to graphics cards & processors.
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« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2013, 05:37:31 PM »

What are you doing with the old system?
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« Reply #13 on: November 27, 2013, 05:41:15 PM »

Quote from: Gratch on November 27, 2013, 05:22:52 PM

Quote from: Punisher on November 27, 2013, 05:09:19 PM

Here are some decent ones. best to worst
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/xps-desktop-8gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/2873558.p?id=1219080297498&skuId=2873558&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=20#tab=specifications
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/xps-desktop-12gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/1746157.p?id=1219062510151&skuId=1746157&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=28#tab=specifications
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/gamer-xtreme-desktop-8gb-memory-1tb-hard-drive/2541141.p?id=1219074179173&skuId=2541141&st=pcmcat287600050002_categoryid$abcat0501000&cp=1&lp=31#tab=specifications

1st one is an i7 other 2 are i5's.
There are more systems from best buy available for more money, but I kept the price down in case you needed to upgrade the video card separately...

Are there any good computer shops near you? or local tech support guys? If so, maybe they could build one for you. As mentioned, not too much has changed from building a system.. Biggest PITA is getting all the cables wired neatly...

Thanks Punisher, that's helpful.  We have a couple local shops (PC Laptops being the big one), but they've always seemed crazy overpriced.  I've actually been pretty happy with this Dell, but have been kicking around the idea of an upgrade.

Biggest challenge for those out of the hardware loop is figuring out what components in these new systems are significantly better than what I have, especially when it comes to graphics cards & processors.
Local shops CAN be hit or miss, but it doesn't hurt to get pricing from them for comparison. Also see how much they would charge to build a system if you provided the parts. Depending on the system, I would usually charge around $150 when I built them. This was labor only as I never charged extra for parts. the only thing with this way is warranty/tech support. If they don't provide parts you will have to go through the manufacturer for warranty.
As per your original symptoms, have you thought about just wiping and reloading the OS?
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« Reply #14 on: November 27, 2013, 05:50:33 PM »

I imagine this weekend will be the time for cheap store deals if you feel like braving the rabble.
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« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2013, 05:01:56 PM »

Go to Newegg today.  Lot's of good deals for prebuilts.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883220405

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883229494

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« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2013, 01:33:44 AM »

Over the two of those, I'd lean to the Nvidia one. a 760 blows away the radeon 7770 and a 64GB SSD just isn't worth that much.

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« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2013, 01:39:03 AM »

yep, and you can upgrade to a SSD later.
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« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2013, 01:40:09 AM »

Also the i7 4770 is no slouch, though they list it as 3.4 GHz, and the reviews I've seen say it's 3.5GHz. Also,the original 760 isn't as beefy as the OC version which is now the common one.

It's not a bad machine, and I know I'm not going to sway you to buying parts, but it's really not that hard to put a system together nowadays.

I'd even consider helping you do it (skype or somesuch thing).
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« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2013, 01:41:11 AM »

Quote from: Purge on November 30, 2013, 01:40:09 AM

Also the i7 4770 is no slouch, though they list it as 3.4 GHz, and the reviews I've seen say it's 3.5GHz. Also,the original 760 isn't as beefy as the OC version which is now the common one.

yep.
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« Reply #20 on: December 25, 2013, 10:31:39 AM »

Quote from: Purge on November 27, 2013, 05:37:31 PM

What are you doing with the old system?

Locking it in a closet and calling it Marty?
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« Reply #21 on: January 01, 2014, 08:00:20 AM »

http://www.dailytech.com/Report+NSA+Intercepts+PC+Deliveries+Pays+Cybercriminals+to+Spy+on+Americans/article34005.htm

So'z. Who's up for the NSA 'value added' lottery?

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« Reply #22 on: January 07, 2014, 09:04:35 PM »

::sigh::

Well, I had a new system picked out. Ordered this one on 12/27.  It was shipped and made it as far as the Salt Lake processing facility...where it was somehow lost.  They have no idea where it is at this point, so they're putting in a claim ticket on it.  Unfortunately, that system is now sold out, and there really isn't anything comparable at that price range.  I'd have to drop down to either an i5 processor (from an i7), or get a 1GB video card instead of a 2GB to find something in that same range.  frown

I suppose there's a chance that they find the lost package, but I'm not holding my breath.  
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« Reply #23 on: January 07, 2014, 09:15:06 PM »

I'd drop in processor over video card ram.

Or, this is the universes was of saying "Build!" slywink
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« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2014, 05:41:10 PM »

After Newegg screwed things up yet again, I decided to scrap going with them and looking elsewhere.  Cyberpower PC was doing a big "MLK sale", and had some pretty good deals going on.  Ended up with this system for about $10 more than I had spent at Newegg.

CPU: AMD FX-9370 4.40 GHz (4.7 GHz Turbo) Eight-Core AM3+ CPU 8MB L2 Cache & Turbo Core Technology
HDD: 2TB (2TBx1) SATA-III 6.0Gb/s 64MB Cache 7200RPM HDD
MEMORY: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3/1866MHz Dual Channel Memory (ADATA XPG V2)
MOTHERBOARD: GIGABYTE 990FXA-UD3 AMD 990 ATX w/ Ultra Durable 3, On/Off Charge, GbLAN, 4 PCIe x16, 2 PCIe x1, 1 PCI
OS: Microsoft(R) Windows 7 Home Premium [+104] (64-bit Edition) **yay, no Windows 8 smile**
POWERSUPPLY: 600 Watts - Standard 80 Plus Certified Power Supply - SLI/CrossFireX Ready
VIDEO: AMD Radeon R9 270X 2GB GDDR5 16X PCIe 3.0 Video Card

Have to wait a couple weeks for it to get here, but that's no big deal.
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« Reply #25 on: January 22, 2014, 09:04:19 AM »

Quote from: Purge on November 30, 2013, 01:40:09 AM

Also the i7 4770 is no slouch, though they list it as 3.4 GHz, and the reviews I've seen say it's 3.5GHz. Also,the original 760 isn't as beefy as the OC version which is now the common one.

It's not a bad machine, and I know I'm not going to sway you to buying parts, but it's really not that hard to put a system together nowadays.

I'd even consider helping you do it (skype or somesuch thing).

As long as you don't hate me or anything I'd appreciate that same offer from you if I ever do a build. Only if you don't intimate me like your pic does. icon_wink
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« Reply #26 on: January 22, 2014, 09:05:18 AM »

Quote from: Gratch on January 19, 2014, 05:41:10 PM

After Newegg screwed things up yet again, I decided to scrap going with them and looking elsewhere.  Cyberpower PC was doing a big "MLK sale", and had some pretty good deals going on.  Ended up with this system for about $10 more than I had spent at Newegg.

CPU: AMD FX-9370 4.40 GHz (4.7 GHz Turbo) Eight-Core AM3+ CPU 8MB L2 Cache & Turbo Core Technology
HDD: 2TB (2TBx1) SATA-III 6.0Gb/s 64MB Cache 7200RPM HDD
MEMORY: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3/1866MHz Dual Channel Memory (ADATA XPG V2)
MOTHERBOARD: GIGABYTE 990FXA-UD3 AMD 990 ATX w/ Ultra Durable 3, On/Off Charge, GbLAN, 4 PCIe x16, 2 PCIe x1, 1 PCI
OS: Microsoft(R) Windows 7 Home Premium [+104] (64-bit Edition) **yay, no Windows 8 smile**
POWERSUPPLY: 600 Watts - Standard 80 Plus Certified Power Supply - SLI/CrossFireX Ready
VIDEO: AMD Radeon R9 270X 2GB GDDR5 16X PCIe 3.0 Video Card

Have to wait a couple weeks for it to get here, but that's no big deal.
con"gratch"! See what I did there?!?
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« Reply #27 on: January 24, 2014, 09:55:23 PM »

Gotta say, I'm pretty impressed with CyberpowerPC.  Ordered on the 19 (no rush shipping), new system arrived today. thumbsup

Loading up the eye candy now...
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