My dad wants to use his pc for pictures and video. He will be editing his pictures he takes with his digital camera. He also wants to import video from his camcorder to. I need help on what would be a good setup for him. any help would be great.
For the budget and the purpose of the machine, I'd say go with intel. I decent socket 478 board with integrated graphics will be fine enough for what you father needs and offers the greatest bang for the buck. Then add a Celeron D and at least 512 mb ram, a 160 gig HD and your set.
My personal recommendation would be similar to the specs of my last build:
board: ECS pm800 m2 (or something similar/better w/int. graphics). $35-$55.
cpu: Retail Celeron D 310 oc'ed to 3.2 Ghz (800 fsb), stock vcore, runs cool. $50 shipped.
Ram: pc3200....whatever is cheap. I was using pdp patriot, 2x 512mb. $40-$80 (depending on 512 or 1 gig).
Capture Card: winfast tv2000xp expert. Best capture card for $50.
dvd burner: nec, lite-on, aopen....whatever. $50.
HDD: whatever's on sale, but I'd recommend a raid 0 config w/a couple 80 gig sata drives, and a pata 40gig or so for Ghost image backups and other valuable information that you wouldn't want to risk on a raid 0 setup. $115 for the two satas, $25-$30 for the 40 gig pata.
Don't be taken in by everyone and their dog screaming about the AMD (or intel, for that matter) dual cores. Yes, they are really great, especially the AMDs as you can also game with them, but for what your planning on using the box for, the price of a 939 board and AMD cpu, or an intel dual core setup will really soak up that budget $$$. The above mb/cpu setup rivals an AMD 64 3400+ 939 rig in Divx encoding, for a bit more than the price you'd pay just to buy the 939 motherboard. If you can get pick up a socket 478 board with agp/pci locks, you shouldbe able to clock the Celeron up to 3.6 to 4 Ghz. At that point it would be performing as well as an AMD 64 4000+ in Divx.
Add $50 for a case/power supply combo to the above list (with such a low power setup any 300 watt power supply would work) and the total is a paltry $430 w/o OS. You can use the extra money to buy a real nice flat panel monitor and keyboard/mouse.
Although, the absolute best bang for the buck is to simply pick up a Dell Dimension b110 from the small business site for $300 plus tax (free shipping), and just add the capture card, dvd burner, and another 256mb stick of ram to that, through Newegg, and then pin mod the cpu to 3.8 ghz. That'll get the job done for the $450, and you get a 17" CRT, keyboard, mouse, and a valid copy of windows, not to mention you can sell the cd burner on ebay and get back $20.
Ive built a couple of these types of computers for people. The Asus Terminator 2 deluxe is pretty nice for a system like this. just add proc, mem, dvd burner, os, and the tv tuner card. It does have agp 8x and pci slot so you can upgrade if onboard video isnt up to your liking. We use these T2 at where I work have about a dozen of em and havent had any problems for about a year now. They come in amd or intel flavors the deluxe have fm tuners and multimedia card slots(comes in handy for flash memory). Im just throwing these out cause they a pretty decent barebones unit and may be a good starting point for this type of computer altho limited to upgradeability as far as the size of the case goes 1 hdd mabee 2 if you use one of the 5.25 bays. 2 of these are running ati 9800 pro graphics and seem fine on the power wouldnt push the power supply farther than that.