Gutting a Dell - I have ~$350 for a GPU, PSU, and case - What to get (for gaming)?


Diamond Member
Jul 18, 2000
My girlfriend has a Dell Optiplex 3010 that she bought in late 2012, or early 2013.

Intel i5-3470 CPU
2x4GB 1600 MHz DDR3 (8GB, Samsung brand)
AMD Radeon HD 7470 1GB (SFF)
250W Dell PSU
Intel H61 Express Chipset Dell Motherboard

I'm planning on salvaging just the motherboard, RAM, and CPU (and maybe/probably the Sata DVD burner). This will be an all-purpose use computer, but the upgrade is mainly so it is capable of playing most modern games at reasonable/decent settings. We'll most likely be playing at 1080p, though perhaps 1440p as well (she has a 27" Mac monitor that we may use, as long as there aren't any issues connecting to it).

I'm probably going to go with this EVGA 600w PSU, as it's a well-known brand, has a 3-year warranty, and should have plenty of juice for any single GPU, or anything else we'd throw at it - Link

I'm leaning towards an 8GB Radeon RX 480 for the GPU, but I'm really not sure what is just around the corner from Nvidia, or what else I could possibly consider in the $200-250 price range.

I really have nothing in mind as of yet for a case. Probably will get some mid-tower that's hopefully on sale.

Thanks in advance for any tips/suggestions!
Last edited:

Ken g6

Programming Moderator, Elite Member
Dec 11, 1999
Have you double-checked that the H61 board has standard power connectors? I hear some Dells have a proprietary connector.

Choices for GPU:
- Currently, for 1080P, you could get a high-clocked EVGA 970. They're working hard to clear inventory for the GTX 1060s!
- Currently, for 1440P, you could get a slightly-overclocked R9 390. They're working less hard to clear inventory for the RX 480s.
- In 1-2 weeks, you should be able to get a stock RX 480. I probably wouldn't.
- In 2-4 weeks, you should be able to get a partner, overclocked RX 480. Seems likely to be a good choice.
- In 2-6 weeks, you might be able to get a stock GTX 1060. In 4-8 weeks you might be able to get a partner, overclocked GTX 1060. These haven't been benchmarked yet.

The EVGA PSU is not even 80+ bronze, so it's at the low end of decent PSUs. :hmm:

Here's a list of currently-available parts:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

Video Card: *EVGA GeForce GTX 970 4GB FTW ACX 2.0 Video Card ($269.99 @ Newegg)
Case: *Fractal Design Core 2300 ATX Mid Tower Case ($45.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: *EVGA 500W 80+ Certified ATX Power Supply ($26.99 @ NCIX US)
Total: $342.97
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
*Lowest price parts chosen from parametric criteria
Generated by PCPartPicker 2016-06-30 17:30 EDT-0400
Feb 25, 2011
$350 for a case, PSU, and GPU?

I'd get a 480, a $100 case/PSU bundle (which is relatively high end), and some pizza.

Or a $50 case and a $50 PSU. (Plenty of nice towers in the $40-$60 price bracket.)

Assuming the above comments about PSU compatibility are resolved, anyway. :D


Apr 14, 2015
If the Mac monitor is the more recent thunderbolt models (past 5 years) you will only be able to use them with computers equipped with thunderbolt.
I agree with the suggestion to wait for 480 or upcoming 1060.