December 2019 – Budget Gaming PC Build

If you are planning to get a great ‘Price Performance’ Gaming PC in 2020 on a limited budget of less than £450 then read on.

Extensive browsing of AliExpress and YouTube takes ages. Just before Christmas you may not have the time or inclination to do this research yourself.

CPU (Xeon E5-2650 V2)

Second-hand server processors offer great value. The E5-2650 V2 Intel Xeon CPU used to cost $1166+ 6 years ago and can now be bought for ~ £40. This offers similar performance to the more recent Ryzen 5 1600X which costs £80+.

Server Ram (2 x 8GB DDR3)

These Xeon systems can use cheaper DDR3 Server Ram and it’s ~ £22 for 2 x 8GB modules of DDR3 1866 MHz. The maximum officially supported speeds depend on the CPU chosen. If your motherboard has four slots this isn’t a guarantee the memory will be able to run in quad-channel. The cheapest X79 socket 2011 motherboards only run in dual channel so buy the fastest ram.

The memory controller is built into the CPU. The E5-2530 V2 can’t take advantage of 1866 MHz ram

Motherboards (X79 Socket 2011)

The following video reviews a cheap sub £40 motherboard which can accommodate these Xeon CPUs. It has four ram slots and comes in various revisions with important differences such as whether there is USB3.0 or an m.2 connector.

I am expecting an Atermiter X79G V1.21 motherboard from Santa this Christmas. The X79G V1.1, 1.2 and 1.21 have different designs of heatsinks. The V1.21 heatsink has vertical fins for airflow from the top of a case. The V1.2 heatsink has horizontal fins for airflow from the front of a case.

The Atermiter X79G V1.21 motherboard for socket 2011 CPUs has vertical VRM Heatsink fins for fan airflow from the top of case.

X79G V1.21 Bios Modding

This Russian website gives me hope that the ram can easily be overclocked via a bios mod. This also allows ram timing controls.

Fast Boot Drive

Any Solid State Drive (SSD) is a wonderful addition to a PC build. These are a great upgrade for any PC still using a spinning Hard Disk Drive (HDD). The SSD cost being <£20 for a useful size drive that can be used to store your operating system.

My current default recommendation is that if you have a M.2 NVMe socket then use it. These Xeon motherboards typically have 1 or 2 M.2 NVMe slots for very fast file storage. The small file access time is often far better on NVMe rather than SATA SSDs.

I have noticed a new model out of the Asgard M.2 NVMe drive, I’ve used in several recent ex-corporate office PC (Dell Optiplex 7010) upgrades where an m.2 adaptor that fits in the PCI-E graphics card slots as a boot drive if a bios mod is done.

The latest Asgard NVMe drives declares read speeds of 3300 MB/s and write speeds of 2500 MB/s

The Asgard M.2 NVMe drive is found from several sellers on AliExpress. Just search for ‘Asgard’ and you will find several options. I use 250 GB boot drive but these 1 TB drives for < £85 are tempting.

Being a gaming PC throwing in a cheap high capacity HDD is perfect for you Game library.

Graphics Card (GPU)

The XFX RX 570 RS graphics cards well balanced with many E5 V1 and V2 Xeon CPU’s

Ensuring that you are not bottlenecking your system with an underpowered CPU or wasting money on an expensive GPU you can’t fully utilise. I used a bottleneck calculator to find a good value GPU.

I found that the 4GB version of the XFX RX 570 can be picked up for under £60 from AliExpress and just add ~£20 for the 8GB version. These general pair well with Xeon E5 V2 gaming builds.

Learn more by emailing me and I can help you design and perhaps source and build you a great budget Gaming PC.

Why Salford IT Help saves you money

Is your PC or laptop sluggish, unresponsive or dated? You might think the only option is to replace it. But If you live in Salford, our IT support services can repair your PC for a fraction of the cost.

Choose to drop off your PC at the service centre, or book a home visit. Your IT technician will assess your PC and offer an affordable solution for you. The result? A fast, responsive computer for years to come.

Not only do Salford IT Help offer affordable computer repairs in Salford, they give you advice to help you get the most out of your PC – and prevent future problems.  And while a new shop bought PC has subpar components to hit an inflated price point,  we at Salford IT Help can select bespoke components or upgrade your PC so it’s designed to meet your needs cost effectively.

What IT services can Salford IT Help provide?

  1. Clear out the clutter: PC’s can be slowed down by too much going on in the background, like open tabs, unused apps and spyware. Our technician can remove this clutter and explain how to keep your PC running smoothly.
  2. Sourcing new parts: if your PC has an outdated hard drive or not enough memory, your technician can source the best parts and install them so your pc runs reliably and responsively.
  3. Boost your PC’s ability: Installing new software can make your PC more capable. If you’re stuck with an old operating system like Windows XP, your technician can update it to Windows 10 or Linux so you can enjoy faster processing and use the latest apps, such as Microsoft Office 2019.

Your local service isn’t limited to fixing PCs either – Salford IT Help can solve any common IT problem, from helping you to print a document to organising your email account. And there’s good news if you’re self-employed: we offer affordable small business IT support in Salford, so your business can run like clockwork.

And if you still have your heart set on a new PC? Salford IT Help can even help you choose the right one! Save yourself money and IT headaches – call us instead.

Salford IT Help is a friendly and reliable IT support business dedicated to getting you the best from your PC with prices from just £12. Call for a free, no obligation quote.

Why invest in a web content writer?

As a business owner you’re always working to a budget, and it’s tempting to keep costs low by writing your own content. After all, you’re good at communicating – why spend money when you don’t have to?

Well, you can of course spend a few hours tapping away at your keyboard to put some content down, but a professional will write great content. And here’s why that’s so important:

  1. Writing for the internet is harder than you think. People online are short of patience and spoilt for choice. It takes time and practice to know what words will have an impact and make people stay on your site instead of clicking on to your competition.
  2. Your content needs to be optimised for the Google search results. For a chance to be seen by searchers, your website needs to strategically include search terms, be high quality and relevant (yes, Google has ways to measure your content’s quality these days)
  3. A content writer can give you your time back. Creating compelling content for your website and promotions takes longer than you expect, and it’s difficult to achieve a high standard of writing when you’ve other commitments. Professional writers on the other hand, can craft content quickly, letting you focus on the key activities of running your business.

The bottom line? With content that helps people find you and stay on your website you’ll get more customers – it’s a sound investment. Salford IT Help recommends using The Web Writer for all your web content needs. She’s a copywriter specialising in online material who wilI create content for your website or marketing campaign for a price that suits your budget. She’s made it as easy as possible to get your content, with clear upfront pricing.

For compelling and affordable web content you can email or visit her website.

Sourcing Web Content

All good businesses know the bottom line is to make money, to do that we need to keep focused on our core business activities. Whether that’s selling custom designed cakes or coaching professional cyclists.

Many web designers are able to construct elegant computer programs that do complicated and repetitive tasks. We are not budding Shakespeares! In the modern world where relevant web content is vital to search engines, turning to a professional for your web content is a prudent measure. hence, Salford IT Help recommends using ‘The Web Writer’ for all your web content and copywriting service needs.

Continue reading “Sourcing Web Content”