PC Parts Picking
December 25, 2018 10:06 AM   Subscribe

My PC imploded on my birthday a few days ago and now I'm basically in the position of having to replace the whole thing at once. I'm pretty out of touch with new parts, though, and am lost in general about what specs are good without going over the top. Suggestions?

I'm likely able to keep my hard drives and my video card (a 970) but the cpu and motherboard need to be replaced and because of that it makes sense to be getting a new case, psu, and ram as well. Spec-wise I don't feel like I need to go past comfortably running games at 1080p with a good framerate, but I'd like at least to be able to run Assassin's Creed Origins and Odyssey solidly as my old build choked so hard on the former that I couldn't even play it (apparently, very cpu intensive). I don't really care about flashy things like lighting or glass cases but I'd like to have a mobo with wifi and decent onboard sound since I wouldn't be surprised if my sound and wireless cards were also shot. I'd prefer an Intel CPU, but I admittedly don't have personal experience with the alternatives.

Budget is somewhat limited; I had to raise funds to even get replacing my computer to be an option and as such I can't really go much past 850 dollars (and even that's stretching a bit). If there's enough leeway I'd add in a new fresh SSD but again I should be able to reuse my old one hopefully. That's easier to figure out than the correct cpu/mobo pairing, though, which is the main thing I need help with (plus psu/case/ram)
posted by flatluigi to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
bang for the buck it is hard to beat the ryzen 2000 series. You can pair that with a 470 B series for not much dough. RAM is expensive right now. 970 is a good card. I run a ryzen 2700 and it was fine with stock cooling.
posted by evilmonk at 10:39 AM on December 25, 2018

Do you know your current motherboard/case form factor? If it’s kinda standard (one of the ATX variants or other standards) you should be able to just get a new motherboard in the same size, which will help the budget a little bit.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 10:54 AM on December 25, 2018

Check Logical Increments for sets of components known to work together and be more or less in comparable performance/budget tranches. I just used their table to guide a new build and it worked out very well!
posted by Alterscape at 11:23 AM on December 25, 2018 [7 favorites]

The sidebar on Reddit's /r/buildapc has lots of good resources. The logicalincrements guide and the pcpartspicker link were the most useful to me.
posted by ArgentCorvid at 1:17 PM on December 25, 2018 [1 favorite]

A good case and PSU can run upwards of $250. Unless there's a compelling reason not to, consider re-using them. Try finding them on PCPartPicker to check compatibility with any new components.

The intel i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 line is where you want to be for good performance without going overboard.

RAM is dependent on motherboard which is dependent on CPU. So start there. You can get an intel I5-8400 or an AMD Ryzen 5 2600X for around $200. A motherboard with built-in Wi-Fi is going to be $100 depending on form factor. 16GB is ~$125. You can use PCPartPicker to find a compatible motherboard and RAM.
posted by zinon at 5:51 PM on December 25, 2018 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: I've settled on something like this, but I would still like confirmation that I'm not screwing up something with this list:

posted by flatluigi at 8:42 PM on December 25, 2018

Maybe check to see if you can reuse your current SSD and if so put that $50 towards an nvme m2 when you can? For all the bandwidths?
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 6:07 AM on December 26, 2018 [1 favorite]

At your price point, I'd go with a Ryzen 5 instead, but apart from what GCUSWFG suggested about the SSD I think that looks fine.

The only other thing I'd add is that I've been using the same ATX case for over a decade with no issues. The main functional thing that's changed in case design over those years, from what I can tell, is that sometimes PSUs go on the bottom rather than the top. Sticking with the same case, provided the old one is still usable, will save a healthy chunk of your budget.

I also like to carry my PSU between builds as long as it still provides sufficient power, but since you lost your last build to "implosion", I'd definitely replace the PSU anyway just to be safe.
posted by tobascodagama at 8:07 AM on December 26, 2018

Like everyone said, check with PC Partpicker for compatibility.

If you’re trying to save a few bucks, I’d reuse your case and just make sure you pick a form factor size that can fit it. Remember, you’re going to need to fork money over for a new OS (Windows 10), which is around $100, and maybe a work utility program like Office.

Check for daily deals. Newegg’s always has new ones. Go to Category -> components -> DIY Super Bundles. You can get a AMD starter for around $230 and an intel around $430.

Lastly, get a good PSU. It’s really important. Try to get a silver or gold grade from a well known company.
posted by MamaP47 at 11:50 PM on May 25, 2019

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