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first time builder on a budget

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January 25, 2006 8:27:00 PM

greetings and salutations.

i am looking into/trying to build up the courage to build my next computer and am looking for advice and/or suggestions from people who have more experience.

i am mostly concerned with quality and i have a budget of $600-$700 (i just lost the interest of most of the gamers right there :lol:  ) and will be using the computer for older games, music and non-professional video editing (i am a teacher and make a video yearbook every year.) i don't plan on overclocking... mostly because i don't really know what it means (just lost the interest of any gamers still reading :lol:  )
another consideration is noise level since the computer will be in the same room that i sleep in.

here's what i have so far: sorry i don't know how to make links :( 

~$100
Antec LifeStyle SONATA II Piano Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case 450Watt SmartPower 2.0 ATX 12V V2.0 for AMD & Intel systems
- can anyhting beat this for quality and quiet?

~$100
EPoX EP-9NDA3+ Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce3 Ultra ATX AMD
- need firewire and agp slot for reusing video card
- is epox a good quality board?
- looked at dfi boards but many reviews say they are not for beginners... is this true?
- should i be looking at 754 socket boards/processors on my budget or am i better off in long run with 939?

~$180
AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Venice 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Processor Model ADA3200CGBOX
- seems to be the best bang for the buck in my price range?
- should i be looking at 754 socket boards/processors on my budget or am i better off in long run with 939?

~$120
Crucial Ballistix 1GB (2 x 512MB) 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200) Unbuffered System Memory
- should i save $25 and just get ordinary ram since i'm not overclocking or is it a smart investment to upgrade?

~$90
Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 ST3120813AS 120GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

i am going to reuse my optical drives, floppy drives, keyboard, mouse and speakers.

thanks for any input/suggestions

-k

More about : time builder budget

January 25, 2006 8:38:15 PM

Well, it looks good so far. However, I don't see a video card listed. That can easily add between 100 to 300 dollars to a system.

If not looking for a power system, just get Kingston ValueRam. I think a gig will cost you about $80 from Newegg. I've used it in past builds and it has been quality stuff.

Seagate is a great drive maker but you can probally shave $10 off if you go with SATA I rather than II. You're not going to see any speed improvement on this system by going with SATA II.

Antec makes solid PSUs. While I am not crazy about buying a case with a PSU in it, Antec may be an exception.

Epox - no experience so I can't comment. A lot of people think they are solid board though.
January 25, 2006 9:18:07 PM

Quote:
However, I don't see a video card listed.


i am using my old fx5500... it's why i need a motherboard with an agp slot

Quote:
If not looking for a power system, just get Kingston ValueRam. I think a gig will cost you about $80 from Newegg. I've used it in past builds and it has been quality stuff.


thank you for answering my question.

Quote:
Seagate is a great drive maker but you can probally shave $10 off if you go with SATA I rather than II. You're not going to see any speed improvement on this system by going with SATA II.


thank you, i'll look for a sata i drive.

-k
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January 25, 2006 10:43:29 PM

Quote:
Maybe you can save up so more money? It's not worth spending the money for that.


that's not incredibly helpful, but thanks for the input, i guess.

i need a computer since mine has died and i have a personal rule not to spend money i don't have... i just need a serviceable computer and want to try building my own.
would i like to have a $1000- $1500 computer? sure, but i need to eat and pay rent more.

-k
January 25, 2006 11:31:15 PM

Quote:
Stick with s939, better upgrade path, and also consider Athlon64 3000+, it's clocked at 1.8GHz, you can't really tell difference, and you'll also save some money.


thanks i'll look for the 3000.

-k
January 25, 2006 11:57:09 PM

Why not just get something like this ABS Prebuilt system from newegg? You could add more RAM and would still come in under budget. It has built in video as well as a PCI Express slot for later.
January 26, 2006 12:06:37 AM

Actually, that's pretty good for $500. I don't think I could spec it out for that much. Good find.
January 26, 2006 7:45:59 AM

I think your system will do you very well. I think the antec case/ps is a good buy, and I plan on the exact same purchase when I build my next system. epox makes great boards. you might wanna look into OC'ing that board if you ever find your system is a bit lacking on speed, as epox boards OC very well.

I'm using an epox nforce2 board in my xp system. tom's hardware did a review on amd64 mobo's and epox did very well.

I would stick with the system you got planned to build and not purchase one made like that ABS system, PS seems to be one thing almost every pc builder out there scrimps on when they build for somebody else.

good luck

ps...gamer here
January 26, 2006 3:30:43 PM

Quote:
Why not just get something like this ABS Prebuilt system from newegg? You could add more RAM and would still come in under budget. It has built in video as well as a PCI Express slot for later.


Quote:
Actually, that's pretty good for $500. I don't think I could spec it out for that much. Good find.


hmmm... and maybe just tinkering with/adding to a prebuilt would be a nice first step in building my own someday. decisions, decisions...

georgebeee, thanks for your input.

-k
January 28, 2006 5:32:05 AM

the system I'm using now is an amd2000+ that came with a 300watt power supply. I noticed a nice increase in stability when I installed an antec power supply.

what mobo comes with that ABS system?

those are the 2 reasons I don't buy a prebuilt system like that
January 28, 2006 6:26:48 AM

epox mainboards are great man no doubt. Before buying my epox ı had bought and ECS Kv2 extreme lite2.0 three days later ı gave it back becasue it sucked. Epox is a great overclocker, too. go for the 3200 venice you can easily overlock it to 2.4 or higher the rest of your system is good for the video card if you can afford buy a6600 gt if you can't buy a 9600 xt (it is still a good card) then you can play all the games at least medium without AA
a b B Homebuilt system
January 28, 2006 3:26:06 PM

"~$90
Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 ST3120813AS 120GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive "

Good price, but, keep eyes open at CompUSA and Best Buy...you can occasionally find ATA133 7200/16m cache 200-250 GB drives for as little as $59 after rebates....if storage capacity vs. dollars spent is important
!