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Build for office computer (Under $900)

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June 5, 2006 8:02:19 PM

Hi, my Dad's eMachines has finally pooped out. I'm getting him a dual-core because he is an ULTRA multi-tasker, around 3-8 programs at once, he is a cardiologist. I'm using on-board video becuase the most graphic intensive thing will probably be the Windows Status Bar Loading animation, mostly medical programs.

Build

I know I have a 939-pin in there with an AM2 board, the 4200+ represents the X2 4000+ on the AM2 socket because Newegg currently doesn't offer it.

I choose the case because it looks "professional" and has good reviews.

I HAD to go with mATX over ATX for the motherboard because there is not an ATX board which is AM2 that has onboard-video. Or any motherboard on any socket, minus one single S462.

The Power Supply may be overkill, but I just have to have the modular cabling.

The memory too might be overkill, I just picked the first dual channel 2GB DDR2 800 kit I saw. I am thinking about overclocking, and I hear the X2 4000+ can hit around 2.5ish on stock cooling. I'm new to OC'ing so I might not get THAT far. I'm pretty sure my mobo can overclock, though.

He doesn't need much hard drive space, but he does keep a lot of pictures and heavy apps. (i.e. 2GB of space for one app)

I'd like for him to have LightScribe and he burns plenty of DVD's, though not enough for the need of another drive.

Just like some opinions, particularly on OC'ing, and suggestions are more than welcome. He doesn't need an OS, speakers, mouse, keyboard, nor monitor.

~Ibrahim~

P.S. Be blunt, I have a thick-enough skin!
June 6, 2006 2:36:03 PM

Nothing showed up in the wishlist...
June 6, 2006 2:53:10 PM

you could re-use the emachine case, with something like this:

FSP Group (Fortron Source) FSP300-60GLS-R Micro ATX12V 300W $49 shipped @ newegg

I used it on many an emachine upgrade, it is a bit pricey but you do save quite a bit by not having to buy a new case.

Quote:
eXtreme PSU calc"]System Type: Single Processor
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 4400+ 2200 MHz AM2 Windsor
CPU Utilization (TDP): 100% TDP

RAM: 2 Sticks DDR2 SDRAM

SATA HDD: 1 HDD

DVD-RW/DVD+RW Drive: 1 Drive
Additional PCI Card (avg): 1 Card

Fans
Regular: 2 Fans 80mm;

Motherboard, keyboard and mouse: Yes

PSU Utilization: 100% (peak utilization)

Total: 189 Watts
[/url]

Looks like a perfect match!
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June 6, 2006 2:57:26 PM

I just might reuse the case if it can save me some money...

This link SHOULD work:

Build

~Ibrahim~
June 6, 2006 3:42:46 PM

Thanks for the PSU site. Good price! Nothing against the second PSU, but I just have to have modular..

I have a question about overclocking, should I try it? Is it worth it? I've heard some people getting that 4000+ 2.6GHz+ , but they were good.

~Ibrahim~
June 6, 2006 4:15:01 PM

Quote:
I just might reuse the case if it can save me some money...


Save money on the case, then swap to ATX and an inexpensive graphics card. Personally, I still can't justify AM2 just yet. I'm guessing you could go 939/Opty 165* with some decent RAM and equal or best your AM2 spec and save some money. Granted the 939 plan is not as future-proofed, period. I just see this point in time as kind of an inbetweener for AMDs. If you're not gameing and you're gonna speculate on a new socket, I'd lean towards Conroe.

*: Assuming you realy want to OC since the 165 runs so cool and you want an office computer to be durable. Mega durable and cool-running.
June 6, 2006 5:01:40 PM

For an Office computer:

Athlon X2 3800+ (S939)
1GB RAM
160GB hard drive
PCI-E Motherboard with integrated graphics


Pop another GB of RAM in it if he ever goes up to Vista.
June 6, 2006 5:43:29 PM

It isn't gonna be worth it to switch to DDR2 800 right now. Most benchmarks show DDR 400 running dual channel is more efficient. Just go wit the X2 3800+ like the guy above me said. I have one and at 1 time i run Itunes, Xfire, Solidworks, 3dsMax, and sometimes Nero. If you wanna keep everything scaled down, the MSI RS482M4 is a good choice, i've been using one on another computer for a couple months and i haven't had any problems with it.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...
June 6, 2006 5:47:38 PM

Well, I'd like to save some money by using the onboard video and I am actually thinking about switching out with a MSI K8NGM2-FID board, which I hear has great overclockability:

http://forums.anandtech.com/messageview.cfm?catid=29&th...

But then I would have to go to S939, which isn't so bad. I mean, this computer will probably never be upgraded, except maybe a memory upgrade if it gets too sluggish or new hard drive. I actually am thinking about the X2 3800+ and OC'ing it to 2.3-2.5 with the guide at anandtech.com...It can be done with stock cooling, so I shouldn't need a third-party cooler, I hear AMD coolers are good, anyways.

~Ibrahim~
June 6, 2006 6:05:21 PM

AMD coolers are good, but thats when you get to the 4400's. As i remember,the X2 4200 and lower came with a stock Al heatsink ( can't remember for sure, haven't seen an X2 4200 for a month), whereas the newer 44's and high have a nicer AlCu heatsink. if i were you, and i was gonna OC an x2 3800, just to be safe,i would buy a nice zalman, either the 7000B or the 9500.
June 6, 2006 6:14:29 PM

Those are good coolers, I have one thing to pick at though. I know those Zalmans are big, but are they heavy? This is a mATX motherboard and I've heard heavy coolers actually warping the motherboards...

~Ibrahim~
June 6, 2006 6:24:08 PM

True, they are heavy, another alternative is the Thermaltake RX Series

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1683...

I actually have one of these on an MSI RS482 Board and haven't had any problems. one good thing about them is that they don't need any extra stuff, they just just attach to the existing AMD 64 brackets.
June 6, 2006 7:05:38 PM

Quote:
Thanks for the PSU site. Good price! Nothing against the second PSU, but I just have to have modular..

I have a question about overclocking, should I try it? Is it worth it? I've heard some people getting that 4000+ 2.6GHz+ , but they were good.

~Ibrahim~


If it's your dad's computer, don't overclock it. If he gets a BSOD, he'll be like "WTF is going on" and he won't know what to do. That CPU, at stock speed, will be more than enough for what he's doing with it.
June 6, 2006 7:45:12 PM

Well, he isn't as technical as me but he'll just call me, and I was going to put a thorugh torture test on for a complete day... I might keep it stock, though.All right, thanks everyone for the help!!

~Ibrahim~
!