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MOBO GA-Z77-DS3H $105
CPU Core i5-3550 $210
RAM Corsair Vengeance 8GB (2x4GB) DDR3 1600 $ 55
GPU 8800GTS 640GB $ 0
HDD WD 640GB $ 0
HDD WD 500GB $ 0
SSD Crucial m4 64GB $ 80
SOUND Xonar DG PCI $ 0
PSU Corsair 520HX $ 0
CASE Fractal Define R3 $ 0
OS Windows 7 Pro $ 0
Trying to keep this upgrade in the vicinity of $500 which isn't much, but then I don't need to replace quite everything as you can see with the various $0 components. Some notes and questions:
- Ordering online as I'm in the middle of nowhere.
- Not going to overclock, so no K series CPU necessary. I'd rather have the virtualization features of the non-K parts.
- I have the Z77 board in there despite the no-overclocking because at the time I'm writing this it's actually slightly cheaper than the H77 board on NewEgg when factoring in the shipping. If the price disparity is noticeably reversed when I order, I'll just get the H77 version.
- Prefer a board with a PCI slot due to the Xonar DG.
- SSD will be used solely as a cache drive with SRT; 64GB max.
- Not really sold on an SSD yet; the m4 just seems to be popular lately. I hear Samsung and Intel drives are technically superior, though, and I may bump it up if something's on sale. Can anyone tell me what specific series and/or models I should be keeping an eye on?
- Don't mock my 8800GTS. I'll be upgrading that probably after summer since it's usually too hot to game, and I usually just don't feel like it during then. Not a big priority since my gaming time has been very low lately.
Anyway, I'm not really married to anything on the shopping list just yet so feel free to offer any and all suggestions if you think it fits my criteria better (or whatever). It's been a while since I've built a machine so I figured I better get some opinions and advice before I do anything.