Just doing up another new system for a friend, and I am gonna go AMD64 for the first time. I am trying to build the best system for the buck (except he wants (must have) 19" silver LCD, wireless KB & optical mouse, laser printer, FM tuner, USB HUB, and 1394 card). This system is for intermediate gaming, internet and office use (no RAID or oc'ing). Any problems with this config?? Any suggestions for better individual parts at similar prices?? I am getting all of the parts from Newegg:
AMD Athlon 64 2800+, 512KB L2 Cache, 64-bit Processor - Retail
GIGABYTE "GA-K8NS" NVIDIA nForce3 250 Chipset Motherboard For AMD Socket 754 CPU -RETAIL
GIGABYTE nVIDIA GeForce FX5500 Video Card, 128MB DDR, 128-Bit, DVI/TV-Out, 8X AGP, Model "GV-N55128DP Turbo Force edition" -RETAIL
Kingmax 184 Pin 512MB DDR PC-3200 - OEM
Western Digital Special Edition 80GB 7200RPM IDE Hard Drive, Model WD800JB, OEM Drive Only
CTX S962G 19" LCD Monitor w/ Speakers , DVI -RETAIL
Zonet VIA IEEE 1394 3+1 port PCI Card , Model "ZFN2600" -RETAIL
ASPIRE X-Alien Black Case with 420W Power Supply, Model "ATXA1A/420"
Lite-On 16X DVD Dual Drive, Model SOHW-1633S Black, Retail
Lite-On 16X DVD-ROM, Model SOHD-167T Black, RETAIL
Samsung Black 1.44MB 3.5inch Floppy Disk Drive, Model SFD321B/LBL1, OEM Drive Only
Heisei Portable USB 2.0 4-Port Hub, Model HU-2004B
Logitech Cordless Desktop Optical Keyboard & Mouse -OEM
D-Link AirPlus G High Speed 2.4 GHz 4-Port 802.11g Wireless Router, Model DI-524 - Retail
Samsung ML-1740 Laser Printer, 17 ppm, 600 x 600 DPI, B&W, 8 MB
SYMANTEC Norton SystemWorks Professional 2003 with 1 Year of Live Update - OEM Full Version
Creative Inspire T3000 2.1 Speakers -RETAIL
Compro PCI TV Tuner Card, REMOTE, Model "VideoMate TV PVR/FM" -RETAIL
Total (Before tax): $ 1,329.20
Shipping : $ 73.00
Rebates : $ 65.00
TOTAL : $ 1,337.00
Actually, for the same price I can pick up this card at Best Buy. Anyone have any idea which card is the better choice??
PNY nVIDIA GeForce FX5700LE Video Card, 128MB DDR, 256-bit, DVI/TV-Out, 8X AGP, Model "Verto GeForce FX 5700 LE OPTIMA" -RETAIL
Item # N82E16814133106
Chipset/Core Speed: nVIDIA GeForce FX5700LE/250MHz
Memory/Effective Speed: 128MB DDR/400MHz
BUS: AGP 4X/8X
Ports: VGA Out(15 Pin D-Sub) + TV-Out(S-Video) + DVI
Support 3D API: DirectX 9.0, OpenGL 1.5
Cable/Accessories: DVI to VGA Adapter, 1 Cable, Manual, 1 CD
Max Resolution@32bit Color: 2048X1536@85Hz
Retail Box (See pics for details)
Get yourself a socket 939 3000+ if you can, socket 939 will give you a better upgrade path in the future.
Also your graphics card is gonna suck for DX9 gaming, on www.anandtech.com the half life benchmarks show the FX5900 loosing about half its performance when they switched from DX8 to DX9.
See how much you can get a 9800pro or Geforce6600 for.
I agreee that you should stick to a socket 939 mobo & processor. It will give you much better upgrade options later on. You can get a combo <A HREF="http://www.newegg.com/app/combspecial.asp?listtype=bund..." target="_new">Here</A> that will only run you about $60-80 more but is socket 939 with an XP 3400 (and the RAM). I would also switch the Western Digital drive to the <A HREF="http://www.newegg.com/app/viewProductDesc.asp?descripti..." target="_new">SATA version</A>. It's only a $5 difference, and again, will help out in the future since boards are going more and more towards SATA. -One less ribbon cable to clutter the case with!
I would aso split the RAM into two sticks of (at least)256MB for running dual-channel, unless you were planning on that already. If he's a gamer he would probably benefit from a full Gig of RAM (with the newer games like HL2, Far Cry, & Doom3). Most regular office apps & web browsing will hardly push 512MB, though.
What is he an idiot? Have you looked at decent boards lately? They ALL COME with HARDWARE 1394 CHIPS ONBOARD. Some midrange boards don't, others do, but it's a standard feature for top end boards.
What, you say onboard isn't good enough? It's a PCI device. That means it's the same damn thing as you find on a card.
And why the USB Hub? Most boards have 4 unused USB port headers and 4 more on the back. The 4 unused ones can be routed to the front of the case. So you have 8 USB ports, maximum 4 on the front, why does he need the hub? Are you telling me he'd rather NOT use the front panel USB and drag a cable from the back to a hub? What kind of thinking is that? The ports are on the board, use them!
<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
Surprisingly, 1394 was NOT standard on many 754 boards, and as far as the USB hub, it was a cheap hook for him to have multiple USB ports on his desk for quick use with removeable drives as well as his digital camera (on the desk rather than having to go to the box itself). I have one and he liked the idea (I do too). Any USB devices always connected go to the back ports and occasional use of the front ones aren't terrible, but for convenience, that's $10 well spent. I certainly see your point for the firewire (especially since the box does have the input) and hope you can suggest a good or better board for about $70. The USB Hub is still a nice feature, and regardless of the box or board he'd get that for his desk. Thanks crashman!
You might be better served by a 9550 graphics card, in that price range. It's not a gamers card, but oh well.
Stay away from anything with a LE or SE designation, I'm not sure if the L stands for lame, or lousy, but the S always stands for shitty.
Thanks Endyen, I found GIGABYTE ATI RADEON 9550 Video Card, 128MB DDR, 128-Bit, DVI/TV-Out, 8X AGP, Model "GV-R955128D" -RETAIL for $67, so that works. I hate picking video cards .... I simply look at price, speed, and # of bits, and that doesn't seem to be enough to guage which cards are better than others.
It sounds like you're not looking for a top of the line video card, but I would choose a different one. Newegg has some Radeon 9600 Pros for around $110 if you are at all able to squeeze out some more cash. Everyone seems to applaud the 9600 Pro and XT line due to cost effectiveness and performance.
Thanks Endyen, great suggestion. I think I will leave it alone though. It's funny how when you keep tacking on $20 here, $30 here, the system ends up costing $300-400 more than you thought it would. To tell you the truth, any of the cards named are probably fine enough (or more than enough) for him, I just like to get the best bang for the buck without too much overkill.
you say he's gonna do some gaming, you might wanna do some research before you blow off the 9600 pro. for the price you're not gonna find anything else that will touch it, especially any nvidia fx cards. they are garbage at best
I have the solution...a major retailer in the US is having a 6-hour sale on the day after Thanksgiving....ATI 9600 XT's are $199 with a $100 rebate! Also, 160 GB WD HDD for $119 witha $90 rebate and a Norton bundle (SystemWorks 2005, Firewall, and Anti-Spam) for $79 with a $50 rebate. How do these guys do this and make money?!?! Perfect!