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Building a Computer ****** Need Help with Part Selection

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by Gluck, Aug 6, 2004.

  1. Gluck

    Gluck

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    Hi, thanks in advance for helping a computer illiterate. I'm curently running a 466 Celeron and am thinking it's about time to upgrade. I looked at the Refurb Dell route which would be in my price range but one thing that really bothers me about my HP is that I can't upgrade anything or even transfer software to a future computer. Is building a good option for a non-computer geek type person? I've got no problem putting hardware together as long as I can turn it on and have XP install everything. My goal is to have something I can keep only semi-obsolete rather than having to start from scratch every few years.

    I'd like to spend around $600 the 'puter is mostly used for word processing and internet, I'd also like to run some small AutoCad drawings and maybe a game or two, maybe burn some DVDs.

    How does my part selection look? A couple questions: I want 512MB of RAM do I need 1 512MB stick or 2 256MB sticks or does it matter? Is the MoBo overkill, I don't see the need to spend a lot on the latest and greatest processor but I'd like to be able to upgrade later? How about the Video card, is there something better in the price range? Is there anything I've missed or anything that's incompatible?

    Thanks for the help, these price are from www.newegg.com ;U


    ANTEC Solution Series Super Mid Tower Case with 350W Power Supply, Model "SLK3700AMB" -RETAIL
    Item# N82E16811129122
    $66.00


    Western Digital Special Edition 80GB 7200RPM IDE Hard Drive, Model WD800JB, OEM Drive Only
    Item# N82E16822144122
    $63.00


    Crucial 184 Pin 512MB DDR PC-3200 8T - OEM
    Item# N82E16820146541
    $86.00


    US Robotics 56K V.90 Internal PCI Modem, Model USR263090 - OEM
    Item# N82E16825104141
    $15.99


    ASUS "A7N8X" nForce2 Ultra 400 Chipset Motherboard for AMD Socket A CPU -RETAIL(New Version, now support AMD Barton 400MHz)
    Item# N82E16813131455
    $80.00


    AMD Athlon XP 2500+ "Barton", 333 FSB, 512K Cache Processor - Retail
    Item# N82E16819103379
    $87.00


    Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition with Service Pack SP1a - OEM
    Item# N82E16837102141
    $90.00


    ASUS ATI RADEON 9200SE Video Card, 128M DDR, 64-bit, TV-Out, 8X AGP, Model "9200SE/T" -RETAIL
    Item# N82E16814121506
    $49.00
     
  2. NetNinja

    NetNinja Always Faithful

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    Looks good to me.

    At least you can upgrade latter if you feel the urge to do so.

    Since you are getting a 333MhZ front side bus processor does the motherbaord you want support a 400mhz FSB?

    If it does check to see how high in processong speed you can go.

    Oh don't forget a fan for the processor.
     

  3. ReAX222

    ReAX222

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    I once used an asus A7V266 and a athlon 2600, beware via/amd problems. I would however suggest a N-force or n-force 2 chipset on a deluxe board. I did not see audio or ethernet, deluxe will get you these built-in.
     
  4. Gluck

    Gluck

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    Yup, I've got the wrong board in there it's for a 64bit processor anyway.

    How about a ASUS A7N8 instead?
     
  5. Gluck

    Gluck

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    I'm buying the "Retail Package" which comes with a fan. Will the included fan be okay or do I need a different one?
     
  6. NetNinja

    NetNinja Always Faithful

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    The fan that comes with the reatil package is fine. That's what I use.
    I don't overclock my processor so no need for an aftermarket fan.

    This motherboard is better A7V880
     
  7. srhoades

    srhoades

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    That all looks good for what you want in a computer. Just a couple of suggestions. Make sure you get an Antec power supply with that Antec case. Cheap power supplies fail, often. The other suggestion is in reference to your hard drive. Make sure it is an ATA133. You would be suprised at the difference in speed between that an a ATA100 drive.
     
  8. chevrofreak

    chevrofreak Senior Member

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    And have the PSU burn out after a month ;g


    The Antec case is a very good choice.
     
  9. chevrofreak

    chevrofreak Senior Member

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    I have an A7V8X-X that has onboard sound and audio. The audio doesnt work, at all, and the onboard LAn would shut itself down after a period of high transfer speeds.

    They may work for you, but, be prepared to get seperate cards if they dont.
     
  10. jack19512

    jack19512

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    I built my son a computer about 6 months ago using the ASUS A7N8X mother board and AMD Athlon XP 2800 + processor and it has been fine.
     
  11. SDBettas

    SDBettas

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    Check out the ABIT AN7 mobo. Also as far as the memory goes, if you want to take advantage of dual-channel DDR memory, get your memory in two sticks of 256.
     
  12. ReAX222

    ReAX222

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    Like I said, watch out for AMD/Via conflicts. The A7N8X-deluxe is a nice board.
     
  13. Gluck

    Gluck

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    Okay, I've decided to go to the ASUS A7N8X-E Deluxe MoBo which lets be go with a Seagate SATA 120GB "Angry Sea Bass" Hard Drive. I'm also changing to 2 256MB SimpleTech 3200 RAM sticks. For $6 I went from the 2500+ to a 2600+ AMD processor. Then I added a NEC DVD writer double layer combo somthin' or other. Finally since I've killed the budget anyway I'm kicking in another $15 for a Black case instead of the silver/bronze.

    I think I'm going to go ahead and take the plung. The one thing I'm a little nervous about is the SATA drive. Some people are having a hard time getting the drivers installed. I may be back for tech support on that one.

    With the MoBo I'm getting I can ger a ASUS WiFi-b card for $22 that will let me use a Dell PDA around the house right? I don't know what I'd do with it but it sounds cool.
     
  14. srhoades

    srhoades

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    Good choice on the Seagate. I heard a rumor somewhere that Seagate now warranties their drives for 3yrs. Althoug a 3yr warranty used to be standard, 1yr is the best you see now days.
     
  15. Grabbrass

    Grabbrass

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    Good choices all around. You might stretch on the video card and get a 9600 instead of the 9200 ... only because the 9600 supports DX9. My old GeForce4 Ti4400, while a super-hot card in its day, is way obsolete, and still wipes the floor with the 9200. Still, if you never play games, the 9200 is more than you'll need.

    Youve picked about the best case available for a steel box. I'm hoping to get an aluminum Lian Li for my next build so I can just be done with case buying, but if I were buying another steel case I'd get the same one you've picked. That 120mm exhaust is nice.

    The Asus A7N8X-E vs. the Abit AN7 is a tossup.

    Good choice on the Seagate for a SATA, and yes you want 2x256mb PC3200 ... you might want to spend the few extra bucks for the OCZ or even the Geil (w/the blue heatspreaders).

    2600+ Barton is the bang for the buck choise in nForce2 compatible systems. The jump up to the 3200 for the 400mhz FSB probably isn't worth it anymore ... but on the other hand for the same that would cost you, you can probably manage an AMD64 2800+ with an nForce3 250 mobo. MSI K8N Neo Platinum.

    I'm not sure your reason for the DVD burner. I have to admit it would be nice from time to time, but I'm still getting along fine with CD-R. I'd probably save money on the burner for now and move up my plans to the AMD64.

    As a final thing to consider, if you wait another month or so you can probably get your WinXP disk complete with SP2.
     
  16. Gluck

    Gluck

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    You know I got looking at it and realized the video card was the weak link. I changed it to a Sapphire 128MB 9600... ...this is turning into "One of those projects". I knew it would.

    How much "Hardware" does one have to buy to get the full version of XP or whatever else? Can I buy a floppy drive cable or does it have to be a major component?
     
  17. Maxthemutt

    Maxthemutt

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    I think you can buy any piece of hardware to qualify for XP.
     
  18. Bronson7

    Bronson7

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    If you're a neat/cooling freak, get the round cables for your drives.
    Bronson7
     
  19. David_G17

    David_G17 /\/\/\/\/\/\/\/

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    most vendors i've seen claim you have to buy a hard drive.
     
  20. gwalchmai

    gwalchmai Lucky Member

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    Weird Science - I thought the ********* in the thread title meant girlfriend. ;f