New Build for Canadian Friend


Mar 9, 2008
EDIT: He did tell me he could up his budget to $2500CAD if it would help, and if it's a smart idea to upgrade from his current PC.

Currently having trouble piecing together a computer for my friend in Ontario, Canada. It seems like the prices on video cards especially are incredibly inflated, even after taking currency exchange rate into consideration. I also almost feel like it may be a bad time for him to upgrade in the first place. Hes currently running, I believe, a 3450 or 3570. 8GB DDR3 RAM, no SSD, a 970gtx, in a Rosewill Thor case. I swear his PC runs games as well as my overclocked 4690K, 16GB RAM, SSD, and 980ti system (Minus loading times in games.. that's about the only difference.). But he thinks he needs to upgrade, after just reenlisting in the military.

His budget is $1800CAD, but could go up to $2000 total. He games a lot. Shooters, MMOs, everything. No matter what I tried, I could not get a system for $2000CAD with a video card and 144hz monitor as well.. or at least not one that will be a huge improvement over his current one. So I told him, maybe forego the GPU for now as the prices seem extremely inflated in Canada, use the 970 until hopefully prices settle a bit. So I'm trying to do a build without a GPU, but including a 144hz monitor. And also would need Windows 10.

Is this even possible? Or a wise decision? As much as I get the itch to upgrade sometimes, I'm still very happy with my own PCs performance.

So he would need CPU, mobo, RAM, PSU, SSD/HDD, case, OS. He has never overclocked, but I do, and he is interested in it, as I will be helping as well. He plans to buy the parts ASAP. No other big random needs like RAID, wifi, etc. Any advice is super appreciated.
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Dec 1, 2004
GPU prices *are* inflated, due to the mining bullshit. I just sold my two GTX 1070 GPUs for more than I bought them for and they were a year old, and the price increase on the Nvidia GPUs hasn't even been as large as the AMD ones. RX 470 cards are selling used for double their original retail price.

That said, a 970 is not going to effectively drive a 144 Hz monitor. Now then, it'll still support G-Sync if that's the direction you go, which is useful at framerates below 144 for sure.

I'm not necessarily recommending this full build, but this is some parts that individually I would consider:

If you did buy everything, it's $2400 CAD with a 1070 GPU and a 144 Hz G-Sync 24" monitor.

The case that is on there I have no actual preference for, cases are almost 100% aesthetic choices so I just chose one with a middle-ground pricetag to hold the spot. Also I didn't put on a Win10 key, because I would buy that from this forum for way cheaper than retail!

In particular, I would look at what he's got that is reusable. You said he's got a case, and likely a PSU so there's at least that. I put in the Ryzen CPU, but you didn't say whether he was going to overclock or not and IMO the 1700 is an overclocker's CPU. If you don't want to OC, you could get a cheaper motherboard or even go Intel. Technically, if he goes Intel there are Skylake/Kaby Lake compatible motherboards that can take DDR3 RAM, so eh could reuse his memory in that case (here is a link to a list of DDR3 Skylake/Kaby Lake boards). Again, I'm not making a recommendation specifically, just providing options because I feel I'd need a bit more information to truly make a good call.

The GTX 970 is around the speed as the 1060 3 GB card, and the 1060 6 GB is definitively faster. So that's your price point for beating his current GPU. In my opinion, if you don't move up to a 980ti or 1070, then the difference isn't worth the cash and he should save his money for the next generation's midrange GPU.


Dec 17, 2016
It's not a good time to upgrade at all, the dollar is low but climbing and card availability sucks, I'm telling my sons friends I won't do their PC's until Canadian Thanksgiving because the dollar is rising and some cards will make it back to stock.