Looking to build from scratch, advice welcomed


Well-known Member
Hi all,

I'd consider myself a novice when it comes to the insides of a PC, I can find myself around and build one, but that is about it.

Currently I have a PC that my wife bought 6 years ago from a catalogue, it has more than served its purpose, but now is the time to upgrade.

We mainly use it for browsing, paperwork, light photo/video editing and whatever my daughter uses it for :confused:. With the new PC, I would like to use it for games aswell, probably only Civilization V, Skyrim and the Fallout Series.

So this is my current set up:
  • CPU: Intel Pentium Dual
  • CPU Cooler: Intel D95263
  • Motherboard: Gigabyte 945GZM
  • Memory: Buffalo DDR2 SD Ram (1GB x 2)
  • Storage: Hitachi 320GB 3.5" 7200 RPM 8MB Cache
  • Video Card: Onboard (Intel 82945G, I think)
  • Case: Philips iQon (Couldnt see any other info)
  • Power Supply: CWT 355W (This is all it says on the side)
  • Monitor: 19" Philips TFT (1440 x 900)
  • Keyboard: Microsoft Wireless Laser 7000
  • Mouse: Microsoft Wireless 7000
  • CD/DVD RW Drive: Toshiba SH-S183A
I am going to keep the HDD as a secondary device and the Monitor, Keyboard, Mouse, CD/DVD RW Drive and upgrade the rest with: (As stated, I don't know too much, but from reading around and using PC Part Picker, this was the best in my budget):
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor (£145.50 @ Amazon UK)
  • CPU Cooler: Gelid Solutions CC-Siberian-01 51.9 CFM CPU Cooler (£5.18 @ Amazon UK)
  • Motherboard: ASRock H77 Pro4-M Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard (£64.00 @ Amazon UK)
  • Memory: Crucial 12GB (3 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory (£49.24 @ Amazon UK)
  • Storage: Sandisk 128GB 2.5" Solid State Disk (£64.94 @ Scan.co.uk)
  • Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7790 1GB Video Card (£94.99 @ Ebuyer)
  • Case: NZXT Source 210 Elite (White) ATX Mid Tower Case (£38.64 @ Scan.co.uk)
  • Power Supply: Corsair CX 430W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V Power Supply (£41.30 @ Aria PC)
Total: £503.79

So finally I get to my questions;
  1. What are peoples view of this build?
  2. Have I missed anything obvious?
  3. This is the top end of my budget, can I keep anything else from my current set up to reduce costs? (I feel the answer is no, but you never know)
  4. Is there any components that I could replace for different models/types that would keep performance similar, but reduce the costs?
  5. Oppositely, is there anything that spending a little more on, that would greatly improve performance?
If anybody could just give me any pointers or tips this would be much appreciated.

Also I don't need an O/S, I only recently upgraded to Windows 7.

Thanks in advance

(Sorry for the long post)
Last edited:


Active Member
Hi Shawpe, I think all that looks pretty good. I've not had much play time on the games you listed but if you're keeping the screen and not playing on a 1080p or 4k million inch tv then the above spec should cope just fine. the only 2 things I'd say (and probably would make much diff to the cost) is 12GB of ram is overkill. I play crisis 3 on high settings with 4gb and the SSD might be unnecessary too. why not save £65 and keep your hdd??

That motherboard is MATX, yet you're buying a ATX case
Retail CPU's come with Intel cooler, probably just as good as that one for a fiver. Save that £5.
I'd get a more powerful PSU.
Don't rate Asrock motherboards that higly.
12GB is over the top, unless you're a hard core gamer- and even then - you won't need that much. 8GB is plenty.
I would recommend SSD, but I'd ditch that 320GB as bit small, at least for myself it is. I'd probably remove it and use it in a USB enclosure for your backups. Maybe get a 1 or 2 TB drive as well.
I don't know how reliable those SSD's are, but you could look for a Samsung 830 or 840 they're highly regarded.

Also buy everything from one place to save delivery.

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