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AM2 build- any recommendations?

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August 5, 2006 7:27:59 AM

building a computer for a relative- ..heres what i have in mind

(all egg prices)

x2 3800- $153

x850xt (seems like a great deal) $120 or osmething

CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM Unbuffered DDR2 675 (PC2 5400) System Memory - Retail link
- only thing im shaky on (any other ram recommendations?) $150

m2ne mobo that everyone raves about -100$

320gb wd harddrive -100


i am being asked for a budget gaming build- i wanted some future upgradeability- core duo is more expensive, mobos are more money, and prob not stable yet.

i just wanna slap this thing togetther and go.
August 5, 2006 7:34:25 AM

Suggested Changes:

RAM: Corsair XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR2-800 <-- If you're not going to get DDR2-800, you might as well get a socket 939 rig. 667 (or in some cases the non standard 675 is used) will actually make this perform worse than a 939 rig with 2GB of ram.
August 5, 2006 7:27:15 PM

thanks thats what i needed... the ram you suggested will work well in this computer?

the budget for thiss computer is supposed to be around $800 usd, though it will prob be around 900 tax and shipping.

the ram you suggested is $255, is there any cheaper 2gb ram that will do a decent job?? can i buy offbrand ddr2 800 ram? i heard ocz doesnt work well with amd.

is that the only "reasonable" 2gb ram, can you suggest something cheaper?
Related resources
August 5, 2006 8:05:44 PM

thanks alot!!

i find that im pretty well educated in most areas of computers, but sicne i havent upgraded my OWN memory and researched it, that is the one spot where i needed help.

i feel crummy because my 3rd grader cousin's computer whips my p4's (WILLAMETE BABY) ass :(  lol

i know conroe is awesome but i really didnt think i could put a build together that could beat this one for the price. - if i wanted conroe i prob couldnt put in 2 gb of ram and such etc.
August 5, 2006 8:10:46 PM

Unless you have read that the Gskill has worked in the ASUS I would stick with the Corsair which reportedly works well. THe ASUS boards were being reported as very finicky with other ram.
August 5, 2006 9:36:50 PM

Quote:
AM2 build- any recommendations?

Yes - Conroe.
August 6, 2006 4:09:07 AM

i also need a power supply and case AND windows included so.... conroe really isnt in the picture

the x2 3800+ and mobo is more than 100$ cheaper. money is an issue.

does anyone have any recommendations on a cheap case+ psu combo (i know you shouldnt skimp on a psu!! but i need something well under 100$ usd)
August 6, 2006 4:38:06 AM

Quote:
AM2 build- any recommendations?

Yes - Conroe.

Now how the hell is that helpful? If you want to be an Intel fanboy fine, but at least post a suggestion for a build. That post is just a waste of everyones time.
August 6, 2006 4:39:24 AM

Quote:
i also need a power supply and case AND windows included so.... conroe really isnt in the picture

the x2 3800+ and mobo is more than 100$ cheaper. money is an issue.

does anyone have any recommendations on a cheap case+ psu combo (i know you shouldnt skimp on a psu!! but i need something well under 100$ usd)


Sonta II is right at $100 USD, and comes with a good PSU and its a nice case. Case+PSU is going to run you around $100 a good PSU. Cannot really skimp there. I supposed you could buy a $12 case and $69 PSU, but the case will be awful for airflow.
August 6, 2006 5:19:08 AM

Quote:
i also need a power supply and case AND windows included so.... conroe really isnt in the picture

the x2 3800+ and mobo is more than 100$ cheaper. money is an issue.

does anyone have any recommendations on a cheap case+ psu combo (i know you shouldnt skimp on a psu!! but i need something well under 100$ usd)

You could get XP the not-so-legal way..... I'm not saying you should, i'm just saying it's an option....
August 6, 2006 5:23:48 AM

thanks shadow duck- i guess im gonna go with the sonata.


i think im gonna drop down to 1 gb of ram for this build. i need to save money somewhere. of course more ram can always be added later :D 

this way i wont feel that ill be using cheap components (just less of them lol)

really the kid is 8 god damn years old he aint gonna notice the difference between 1 or 2 gb of ram

btw ill drop to using gskill (just one stick) from what ive read that the m2n e only does 1.95v for ram but this ram is rated at 2.1 ---- will this give me problems?
August 6, 2006 5:28:13 AM

Go with 2 x 512MB instead of 1 x 1GB. Always keep dual channel operation if possible. Here, it's very possible.
August 6, 2006 4:22:19 PM

:twisted:



mab if i "skimp" on my operating system..... i could afford the 2gb of ram...

if i bought one stick of 1gb and then later bought another one, would it be dual channel?
August 6, 2006 5:01:02 PM

Quote:
:twisted:



mab if i "skimp" on my operating system..... i could afford the 2gb of ram...

if i bought one stick of 1gb and then later bought another one, would it be dual channel?


Yes, it would be dual channel. You would just have to make sure that the second stick is the same brand/size/model number as the first.

An OEM copy of XP Home comes at about $110, OEM XP Pro comes at about $150. (However, your above statement makes me think that you had no intention to buy legal at all...)
August 6, 2006 5:49:21 PM

Actually an OEM copy of XP Home goes for around $90... XP Home with SP2 - OEM, and an OEM copy of Pro goes for about $140... XP Pro with SP2 - OEM

I still think Conroe would be a good idea, because then you don't have to get matching sticks. For example, you could get a 1GB and a 512MB stick and still have dual channel operation. Intel refers to this as their Flex Memory technology. (For anyone else reading this post, Flex Memory tech. is only in certain Intel chipsets. Look up your chipset at Intel's website before attempting this.)

The P965 chipset supports Flex Memory (The Gigabyte board I suggested uses said chipset), so if you went that route, you could drop to 1.5GB of ram to help offset the cost of the other parts.
August 6, 2006 5:56:08 PM

final line up

x2 3800+

2gb gskill ddr2 800

m2n-e

sapphrie x850xt

250 gb wd caviar

antec sonata II

all of this comes to around 850

i am almost willing to bet that you cant build a conroe that will beat this for this price. youd have to ddrop to 1gb ram or get a cheap psu / case.

worse comes to worse i cant get windows to work and ill have to buy it


*now i just have to save up for that e6600, x1900xt mobo , ram and a sata hdd - for myself
August 6, 2006 6:07:12 PM

Any Conroe will beat that.... it will just cost about $70-100 more.
August 6, 2006 6:43:00 PM

exactly- 70-100 more...70-100 more that my aunt wont spend on my cousin

conroe mobos are like 70$ more than the m2ne and the processor is like 80 more so thats 150 more

i spent like an hour trying to put together a conroe system for 850 (shipped) and it just isnt possible. (i live in nj where we get sales tax :(  )

the computer will definitly suit its needs.

plus it will be upgradeable to k8l or w/e later on.
August 6, 2006 7:11:50 PM

If the pc is being built for an 8 yr old kid I would buy as cheap as possible, consider even second hand, as it won't last a year or 2 before he buggers it up. As far as ram is concerned, I would say that more ram is necessary (ie. 2gb rather than 1gb) since younger people are less likely to pay any heed to the limitations of smaller amounts of ram (ie. by making sure they close down one program down before opening next program). I would go with 2gb cheap ram and amd3800x2. Also large hd. On the other hand, if you do go with 1gb of ram, windows xp can be fairly easily configured to strip out all unecessary processes running in the background. I actually have 2gb of cheap ram but also have windows xp stripped right down so I could have easily got by with 1gb of ram and spent more on processor (eg. dual core instead of single core)

I wouldn't say one-liner (or even 1-word) posts are a 'waste of time' as they take just one second to read, process and ultimately reject. Annoying, yes. Waste of time, no (except for the idiot that posts them).
August 6, 2006 7:21:42 PM

Quote:
AM2 build- any recommendations?

Yes - Conroe.


... you fail.


Quote:
Any Conroe will beat that.... it will just cost about $70-100 more.


... you fail even more.

I don't see why it's that hard, he said he doesn't want conroe, so don't give him conroe. A limited amount of fanboyism is fine, but when you shove off everything that isn't conroe, it pisses people off and makes you look stupid. I like conroe too, but I'm getting an AM2 build, because you're all pissing me off with the conroe crap.
August 6, 2006 7:45:43 PM

A few things....Dual-Channel doesn't really matter in AM2 as much in Core 2 Duo.

Core 2 Duo is faster, agreed, but I feel more comfortable with AMD, maybe a sign of fanboyism? I'm not 100% sure that it is fanboyism, but I feel inclined to believe that. G-Skill had some issues with AM2, but I believe that was user fault, probably picked the Intel version. OCZ also seemed to issues with AM2, but I think those are solved. Here is a great deal on DDR2800 CL4:

$165: OCZ Platinum 2GB (2x1GB) 4-5-4-15

The Sonata is a very respectable case. Looking good, nice choice on the GPU: Very fast.

~Ibrahim~
August 6, 2006 7:58:48 PM

Quote:
final line up

x2 3800+

2gb gskill ddr2 800

m2n-e

sapphrie x850xt

250 gb wd caviar

antec sonata II

all of this comes to around 850

i am almost willing to bet that you cant build a conroe that will beat this for this price. youd have to ddrop to 1gb ram or get a cheap psu / case.

worse comes to worse i cant get windows to work and ill have to buy it


*now i just have to save up for that e6600, x1900xt mobo , ram and a sata hdd - for myself


If funds are that critical, perhaps you should consider socket 939 instead. DDR is 1/3 to 1/2 as expensive as DDR2. Motherboards such as an MSI Neo4F are quite inexpensive and there's still the option of a processor upgrade while they last (another year or so). This way you could also bump your X850xt to a 7600GT and get a licensed copy of XP (I strongly object to software piracy).

Note also that socket 939 X2 3800 will be a bit quicker than an AM2 version due to the much higher latencies with DDR2. (These latencies tend to disappear with higher clock speeds but that doesn't apply to a 2GHz X2 3800).

Oh yeah, I don't know about DDR2 but I'm running 2GB of OCZ on my Opteron 175 and it works perfectly. Just installed it the other day with nice tight timings and it really works well. This is socket 939 obviously.
August 6, 2006 8:20:32 PM

Quote:
If funds are that critical, perhaps you should consider socket 939 instead.


Excellent advice all around.
August 6, 2006 8:42:39 PM

Quote:
I don't see why it's that hard, he said he doesn't want conroe, so don't give him conroe. A limited amount of fanboyism is fine, but when you shove off everything that isn't conroe, it pisses people off and makes you look stupid. I like conroe too, but I'm getting an AM2 build, because you're all pissing me off with the conroe crap.


I don't disagree that an AM2 system wouldn't be a good choice, I just think a Conroe build would be a better one. I also threw out my suggestion for a Conroe build as just that - a suggestion. By no means does anyone on these forums HAVE to take the advice of another person. I was simply sharing my opinion with a few facts involved too. If the OP doesn't want a Conroe build he/she does not have to get one.
August 7, 2006 3:36:17 AM

i didnt say i was going to pirate, i just implied it.

939 is being phased out, hence decreasing this systems upgradeability.
850 is the budget and this meets the budget

it will do the job fine for now, and later be easily upgraded.

plus an x850xt is a fast card, it can max out css (ive seen friends do it) and dx 10 cards are comming. it should do medium- high settings in most games fine

i REALLY LIKE CONROE!!! i want it for a system that i am building for myself but unless you can put together a system for under 850 that includes a case and psu, i cant consider it.

sure u can get one but only with 1gb ram, id rather 2gb ram with the amd than 1 with the conroe, correct me if i am wrong

you show me a conroe build for this price and ill jump right on
August 7, 2006 5:32:52 AM

Quote:
I was simply sharing my opinion with a few facts involved too.


It's obvious to anyone that pays attention that you give loads of excellent advice.
August 7, 2006 6:34:26 AM

yes prophecy is a GREAT help.... and i said ididnt want conroe soley because i dont think it fits in an 850$ build (w/ case psu)

if any of you could make it work, feel free to tell me! ive seen the benchies, i know that the e6300 sometimes is even in the same class as the fx62, im not an amd fanboy (ive only owned one computer, a p4)

this is why funds are critical- my aunt and uncle want a computer for their 3rd grade son. they asked me how much it would cost - off the top of my head i said 800, prob 850 after shipping/tax. i feel like a shmuck saying "well spending 1000 gets you alot more" when i already said 850 could do the job, which it certainly can.
August 7, 2006 6:59:48 AM

See my post above....
August 7, 2006 4:18:16 PM

I have a question,

How does that X850 stack up against other cards in that price range? That Conroe system has me thinking twice about the AM2 system because the price is right and after looking at a 6300 overclocked it blows away most of the X2 processors. I guess the question would also be, how hard is it for a novice to Overclock a processor?


Thanks,

Paul
August 7, 2006 4:34:18 PM

Its pretty fast in that price range, has a full complement of 16 pixel pipelines versus the 7600GT's 12. Slowish memory clock, but resonably fast core clock. Also has 256-bit memory interface, while the GT only has 128. The card is very fast, would only lose to the GT in feature set: Missing SM3.

~Ibrahim~
August 7, 2006 6:09:09 PM

Quote:
Good(Scratch that) Great thread to check out:

"I'm stuck! X850XT vs. 6800GS vs. 7600GT"

Prolly the best thread I've ever read.

~Ibrahim~



Thanks for the link, I would really just like to get the most bang for the buck in regards to a video card for now, and then upgrade to DX10 when it makes sense later on.
August 7, 2006 6:42:58 PM

That card is a very good bang for buck, IMHO...Gotten pretty cheap now, too.

~Ibrahim~
August 7, 2006 7:08:55 PM

lol prophecy u posted ur conroe build while i was typing my response lol 2:33am and 2:34 am

yeh thats under 850 so it will be like 910 or sumthin after shipping and tax (im nj)

that is a quality mobo?

alot of my friends have x850xt s and got them when the came out for alot of cash$

games havent evolved THAT much over the past year and this card is now lik 115 on newegg.

the x850xt is a kickass card and (im a slightly biased towards ati because ive had a great experience with the 9800pro (oc the crap outa it and it does the job)
August 7, 2006 8:12:56 PM

There are better choices for boards, but the MSI should be decent quality and should allow you to overclock a bit (at least more than the Intel branded board would). Any Nvidia alternatives would cost more for equal performance, and from what i've heard, the X850XT is pretty good. You can always upgrade to a dx 10 card once they come out anyway....
August 7, 2006 8:13:31 PM

If you are going with Core 2 Duo and P965, you might consider this RAM as well:

G.SKILL DDR2 800 2x1GB, Intel Only

This will save you additional $22!

Note: this RAM works only on Intel CPU and chipset...
August 7, 2006 10:21:56 PM

good call core2dude on the cheaper ram...

yeh well this computer isnt for me. it wont be overclocked any time soon as it is for a computer iliterate family

so/

sonata2
core2duo e6300
msi board
2gb gskill intel only ram
x850xt
and 250gb wd caviar

looks pretty strong to me (now i just have to wait for the ok from my aunt to order this stuff)
August 7, 2006 11:26:39 PM

Ahh, I'm so torn. I'm really not sure if I want to build an Intel 6300 system, or if I want to build an X2 system. So many choices and I really don't know how to decide.

I do appreciate all the help everyone has been giving.

Paul
August 8, 2006 1:45:04 AM

Good call Core2Dude.....
August 8, 2006 1:59:18 AM

Quote:
yes prophecy is a GREAT help.... and i said ididnt want conroe soley because i dont think it fits in an 850$ build (w/ case psu)

if any of you could make it work, feel free to tell me! ive seen the benchies, i know that the e6300 sometimes is even in the same class as the fx62, im not an amd fanboy (ive only owned one computer, a p4)

this is why funds are critical- my aunt and uncle want a computer for their 3rd grade son. they asked me how much it would cost - off the top of my head i said 800, prob 850 after shipping/tax. i feel like a shmuck saying "well spending 1000 gets you alot more" when i already said 850 could do the job, which it certainly can.


You've said it all right here. Conroe would yield the fastest computer you can buy. Of that there is no doubt. But, you are building this PC for a 3rd grader. It doesn't have to be the be all end all system. It only needs to be powerful enough to meet his needs for now and perhaps a few more years. That puts him in the 5th grade. Again, how much power does a 5th grader need? Are you building this to meet his needs or your ego?

You would do well enough to build for him a socket 939 X2 3800 or better yet, perhaps something based on the 930D. He probably won't be in to serious games for another 3-5 years. Something like this will easily last him until then.

Just my opinion... but remember, this will be his computer, not yours.
August 8, 2006 3:08:54 AM

well they WANT to spend 850, why shouldnt i get them the best i can for the money....jeez

i wouldnt feel comfortbable knowing that there was a better deal out there.

i bought my first computer when i was in the 5th grade (now in 10th)...im still using it and i CAN STILL PLAY GAMEs only at low settings though- i did upgrade my video card

so im think if thist computer lasts him 4 years then hell be in 7th grade and will probably start getting more into games (or less into, depending)

i should have titled this best bang for buck 850 instead of am2 build
August 8, 2006 3:32:51 AM

Quote:
well they WANT to spend 850, why shouldnt i get them the best i can for the money....jeez

i wouldnt feel comfortbable knowing that there was a better deal out there.

i bought my first computer when i was in the 5th grade (now in 10th)...im still using it and i CAN STILL PLAY GAMEs only at low settings though- i did upgrade my video card

so im think if thist computer lasts him 4 years then hell be in 7th grade and will probably start getting more into games (or less into, depending)

i should have titled this best bang for buck 850 instead of am2 build


I wasn't suggesting that you waste their money. I just don't think you need to spend it all either. From what I've read thus far, it isn't that they WANT to spend $850, it's that they're WILLING to spend that amount. Would they be disappointed if you put together a nicely powerful and competent machine for only $650 or $700? Would he know the difference?

Underbuying is an instant disappointment. Overbuying takes longer to realize though the financial effects are immediate. If you purchase reasonably now with the potential for upgradability in the future, then you will have accomplished the ideal making everybody a winner including yourself.
August 8, 2006 5:09:59 AM

so ur saying am2? well it has to be either am2 or 775 because upgradeability is important

they are rich. if i had said 1500 they would have said yes just the same. i just figured 850 is right at the price/performance sweet spot.
August 8, 2006 6:20:00 AM

The way I see it.... give him a comp that's still going to be good when he gets into games. If that doesn't happen for another 5 or 6 years, well like you said his parents are rich. But if he get's into them sooner, a Core 2 rig would be able to handle them right away.... not that an X2 system wouldn't either, but a Core 2 would be able to for a longer period of time. If he really doesn't get into games for another 5 or 6 years, it doesn't matter if we build it for upgradability now anyway.... 5 or 6 years down the road both the Core 2 and AM2 chips are going to be obselete, and the current top of the line stuff won't be compatible with the LGA775 or AM2 sockets.

And back to the note about his parents being rich, if they have that much money, tell them in order to give him a system that can last as long as possible, you need an extra.... say $50. If they have money to blow, they won't care.
August 8, 2006 6:58:30 AM

ChaseD13,

I just did some checking, and it seems folks are having problems getting a post with this RAM on ASUS P5B. On the other hand, it works like charm on P5W!

Do some checking before you buy this.

Link 1

Link 2

Link 3
August 8, 2006 7:21:25 AM

Core2Dude.... Chase's last update on the parts list indicated he was going to the MSI board I picked out, not the P5B. It's good that you noticed things like that ram issue though.
!