Game Front’s 2011 Holiday Gift Guide for Gamers

Page 1: Intro | Page 2: Games | Page 3: Consoles & Gadgets | Page 4: PC System Building

Two Radeon HD 6950 2GB’s
MSRP: $270 (each)
Brand: AMD
Component Type: Graphics card
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
Two of these bad boys in CrossFire deliver the best performance without getting into ridiculous price ranges — not that $550 is cheap. While two cards don’t deliver twice the performance of one card, the 6950 has better Crossfire performance scaling than previous generations. You can always just buy one — it’s a solid card in and of itself.

GeForce GTX 580
MSRP: $480
Brand: NVIDIA
Component Type: Graphics card
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
Because it’s the fastest graphics card on the market with a single GPU. While its topped by dual cards CrossFire and SLI in terms of performance, it doesn’t have any of the hassles associated with a two-card setup.

Radeon HD 6790
MSRP: ~$130
Brand: AMD
Component Type: Graphics card
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
On the cheaper end of the spectrum, this card still delivers full DirectX 11 support and solid in-game performance. You may not be able to max out your graphics settings without suffering from lowered frame rates, but it’s a quality card for the price.

Core i5-2500K
MSRP: $216 – $224
Brand: Intel
Component Type: CPU
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
This is the gamer’s CPU. Anything less powerful may not comfortably max out your favorite games; anything more powerful will only deliver a marginal performance increase for a steep price. With an unlocked CPU multiplier, this baby’s overclocking potential delivers even more value.

Core i7-2600K
MSRP: $317 – $326
Brand: Intel
Component Type: CPU
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
Maybe you care about more than just gaming performance. Maybe you want the fastest damn system money can buy. While the hyper-threaded i7-2600K won’t deliver an appreciable performance increase in today’s games relative to the i5-2500K, it’ll help with your processor-intensive needs, like 3D modelling and video encoding.

Z68XP-UD3
MSRP: ~$150
Brand: Gigabyte
Component Type: Motherboard
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
Tom’s Hardware 2011 Recommended Buy is a seal of approval that’s difficult to ignore. For a relatively cheap price, you get multi-GPU support with SLI and CrossFireX, two rear panel USB 3.0 ports, and two front panel USB 3.0 ports available through the internal USB header.

P8Z68-V PRO
MSRP: ~$230
Brand: ASUS
Component Type: Motherboard
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
Essentially the same as the Z68XP-UD3, this board includes a few more bells and whistles, and many people swear by ASUS’ manufacturing quality and the longevity of their products.

Raven RV03
MSRP: ~$140
Brand: Silverstone
Component Type: Chassis
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
A bottom-mounted PSU, two 180mm fans, and room for up to seven 120mm fans gives this full tower great cooling potential, and its support for eight expansion slots and graphics cards of any length makes it surprisingly roomy. The stylized black frame with two gold stripes sets it apart from your office PC.

650D
MSRP: ~$200
Brand: Corsair
Component Type: Chassis
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
If you prefer something simpler-looking, the 650D packs eight expansion slots in a solid black mid-tower frame that comes with one 200mm top fan, a 200mm front fan, and a 140mm exhaust fan. Two top slots for 120mm or 140mm fans give you more cooling options, and

Level 10 GT
MSRP: $280
Brand: Thermaltake
Component Type: Chassis
Buy it From Newegg

Why You Want It:
On the other end of the spectrum, if you want a case that lets people know you’re a hardcore gamer, then this full-tower looks like it came straight out of a sci-fi movie set. Featuring color-shifting LEDs that can alternate between red, blue, and green, this case is about as garish as they come, but hey — if you have an expensive computer, sometimes, you want it to look expensive. Three 200mm fans and a 140mm fan, as well as a slot for a 120mm fan, give this case exceptional cooling capabilities, and like the other two, it has eight expansion slots.

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4 Comments on Game Front’s 2011 Holiday Gift Guide for Gamers

gifts

On November 23, 2011 at 6:46 pm

Thank you for this extensive & thoughtful list. I’ve already added The Wild Vine & The Everything Guide to Wine to my Amazon Wish List. Hopefully, my friends are paying attention! Thanks again for a very useful post.

G.A.R.B.A.G.E

On November 23, 2011 at 8:25 pm

I don’t even…the list went from listing cool console games to suddenly turning into a huge catalog of parts for an overly expensive and over powered electric word processor and email/torrent catch all.

Its not really worth all the money, trouble or effort just to play a real PC exclusive like Minecraft, hell even that will be available on the consoles come spring 2012. And I imagine it won’t be long that what ever is left of the few PC exclusives will soon follow suit.

I guess somebody can put together one helluva Dosbox or emulator for PC gaming on but man talk about giving out expensive holiday gag gifts.

Red Menace

On November 24, 2011 at 12:13 am

Now that my Xbox red ringed maybe I’ll give that Playstation 3 320GB Console Bundle a go. I’ve been very interested in Uncharted 3.

Warp

On November 24, 2011 at 11:49 am

Not counting the PC parts, are there any reasons why ALL of the gifts are above or at 60$?

Also encouraging people to buy call of duty? Shame on you.