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New gaming system, new builder, low budget

Last response: in Systems
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January 4, 2006 5:00:51 AM

Hi, I’ve never built a computer before and would like to give it a shot. Take a look at my set up and hopefully everything will be compatible. I went through the$500 gaming rig on the build your own tab. It looked pretty good to me, but it was from Oct and I don’t know how much has really changed since then. I went through and added things I wanted to upgrade from it and this is what I came up with.

This machine will be mostly for gaming. I intend to do other things with it, but gaming is its main purpose.

My budget is $600 before shipping costs

Motherboard:
ASRock 939Dual-Sata Atx Amd Motherboard $68.00

Processor
AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Venice 1GHz FSB 512KB L2 Cache Socket 939 $167.00

Memory
2x512mb Corsair XMS $100

Video Card
eVGA GeForce 6600 / 256MB DDR / AGP 8X / DVI / VGA / TV-Out / Video Card $114.00

Hard drive
Caviar SE WD800JD 80GB Hard Drive (Serial ATA-150, 7200 RPM, 8MB) $50

Power Supply
Antec TRUEPOWERII TPII-430 ATX12V 430W Power Supply $59 after mail in

Will this Psu do ok? How can you tell whether they have a breaker so the rest of the hardware doesn’t blow in case it fries?

Optical
16x Dvd $25

Case
Apex Case Will all the hardware fit? Will the power supply replace the one included no problems? $30

Total: $614
I was not planning on buying a sound card at this time, will the integrated sound work ok?

Are there any major errors that I have made? I am looking to do this mainly on my own I think it would be a great experience, but are there any tutorial sites that you recommend in case I get stuck? I know that I will experience problems as I have never done this before and any advice I can get would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance, Joseph.
January 4, 2006 6:37:32 AM

What PSU does the case come with?

I have the following system running on a 300W PSU- AMD 3000+ (939) MSI nForce 4 board 2x 512 DDR400 (dual channel) X800GT PCI-Express 2x 80GB Seagate Hdds in RAID0 and my DVD-RW. So i wouldn't upgrade the PSU yet.

Next I would buy a 3000+ to save a bit of money as there is only a tiny difference in performance between a 3000+ and a 3200+.

The slowest part in your setup is the Video card. With the money saved from doing the above put it into getting 6600 GT or an X800 GT (the X800 GT is better) The standard 6600 is not a very good card and the 256mb on it will not be used very often.

The sound on most motherboards is fine, unless you want to have a 5.1 or 7.1 setup. So don't waste money on getting a nice card yet.

All PSUs act like an expensive fuse- if it blows or there is a surge in the power, the chance of your hardware going is very very small.

When building the PC it is a good idea to find someone who knows about building PCs. It is easy to damage something when it is your first time and you're not sure what you are doing- I almost damaged the first PC I built! :wink:
January 4, 2006 8:15:37 AM

MB - I would spend a little more and get a Nforce4 based solution, for example:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

CPU - looks OK for a value system

Memory - nothing wrong with the value select range from Corsair, save some cash.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...

Graphics - get the fastest possible card you can afford - the 6600GT is a good all round model.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

If you want an antec PSU why not just get an antec case from the start? This is a good quality case and unless you want to start doing SLI the 350W rating will do, this is AMD not Intel we are talking about!

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Lastly - the HDD - you can double the size for $10 more, so do it!
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January 4, 2006 5:11:06 PM

here's some change:

we downgrade the CPU to 3000+ definitely

and yes save $$$ with value ram

and no you don buy 6600LE, at least a GT or 6800GS

No doubling drive size, you won't even fill 40gig if you don dump music and video on there

KEEP THE ASROCK, don't switch to NF4, the asrock is a heck lot quiter and the onboard sound is better

swtich the PSU to the aspire for 30 after rebate or this thermaltake for less power and no surge protection but for less shipping

that case got a raise in price, so what you do is get the Ultra Wizard UV blue with side window for 31.55 shipped from THENERD.NET.

Now you just saved like $50 bucks, then you drink one less can of coke for a month and !!! GET the 6800GS !!!! for like $200 and lot better performance . search the prices on pricegrabber.

for help, just ask us
January 4, 2006 5:22:39 PM

Yes i agree you gotta go with the 6800GS, the vanilla 6600 is already starting to get dated and in about 6 months its gonna have a really hard time running the newest stuff. Also go with the 3000+ its supposed to be really nice for overclocking and since amds stuff runs so cool you should be able to oc it no problem. I also would get say that antec case the other guy mentioned. I know your on a budget but you dont want to skimp to much on the case, since its holding all your expensive hardware. besides that looks good. Good luck buildin it, just remember that your prolly gonna have some probs with your first build, but just make sure you read all the manuals and stuff first and you should be ok. :D 
January 5, 2006 9:42:30 AM

hi everyone, thank you for the quick and clear responses.

I just have a couple more questions.

I'm very nervous about buying a case/psu combo because of what i've heard but if you think this psu can handle it, I'd jump at the chance to save some dough. Antec Solutions

Will that Psu be able to handle the 6800gs? also which manufacturer should i choose? eVGA, XFX, Gigabyte, MSI, Verto?

I like the idea of the ASrock having both the AGP and Pci-e, but since i'm getting a Pci-e card i don't want to spend money on a feature that i'm not going to use, would there be any better options in the $70-$80 price range?


I am going to go with the corsair valueselect ram and the amd athlon 64 3000+ to save some cash. also the 80gb hd is not so bad since this computer will only house games. and this is an upgrade that i can do later without consequence (when the 80 is filled, which i don't see happening soon).

thanks a lot for all of your help guys, Joe.
January 5, 2006 10:26:17 AM

A 350W PSU will be fine running a 6800GS. You'll only need a bigger one if you have lots of HDDs and an SLI setup which you won't! :wink:

The best motherboard I can think of is the one I have. I'm a huge fan of MSI and i've never had a problem with any of the boards i've had. So get this one for $70 MSI K8N nForce 4 its a great board.

I don't know much about other brands of cards as I only buy ATI cards and they must be made by Powercolor

The last thing you must do is make sure the case is well ventilated because being a small case the temp will rise quickly unless you have some fans going! :twisted:
January 5, 2006 11:33:29 PM

That case is a good one cause it has one 120mm fan, vent for cpu (which has no noise and is more effective than a 80mm fan there), plus a quality PSU.

The MSI mobo is fine except it doesn't have SATAII (something you'll need when you upgrade) and the M2 upgrade socket (although running M2 with DDR is not the best) and worse sound and it's louder. (I'm trying to get you to buy the asrock, you see......but the asrock has it's own problems too, like layout). It really depends, I don wanna NF4 in the lower-end range. You are not paying for the AGP part anyway and you can't find better mobos that's cheaper than the asrock or MSI.

Quote:
I don't know much about other brands of cards as I only buy ATI cards and they must be made by Powercolor

must be Powercolor???????? What are you talking about? Also, buying made by ATI cards gets you higher prices and stock performance, not that good of an idea.

As for the 6800GS, get the eVGA or XFX, they are the cheapest and very reliable. Monarchcomputer has the eVGA for 195 with 3 bucks shipping. Oh, any of the brand you listed is good buy. Just go for the lowest price.
January 6, 2006 2:42:55 AM

thanks guys for the replies, i'll do some more research on the mobo's but i think i have the rest of my configuration filled out. I really appreciate you guys taking the time to answer a noobs questions.

Joseph
!