Please Advise - Best Components for Budget Computer Build

This will be my second build. My first computer I built about 3 years back out of high quality components has been a top-notch performer.

This time around, I need to build on a tight budget. All I need is a computer for my wife to surf the internet using a cable modem. She does a lot of internet chatting and very light game play. We are talking Solitaire here, plus a few role playing games such as Myst. She may do light photo editing with Photoshop Elements or something similar. Light word processing such as MSWorks. Internal hard disk storage space should be 80 to 120GB or so. She should get by fine on 512MB to 1GB memory. I already have a monitor.

If my budget is $500, what would you folks suggest would be the most bang for my buck for the case, PS, MB (incl sound), CPU, memory, VC and HD? Is it even possible to build a PC using the terms quality and tight budget?

This computer will replace a $400 piece of #%^#$ by EMachines that did not even last two years. Thanks for your help. :)
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  1. Sanjis guide to gaming on a budget

    http://forumz.tomshardware.com/hardware/Sanji-Guide-Gaming-PCs-Budget-ftopict228067.html

    Check out the sub $500 and $500 sections, great guide which layed the foundation for what will be my first build later this week!
  2. I am thinking the key to that computer would be onboard graphics, it will save you close to $100 overall. The cpu can be almost anything, even a Celeron or Duron. Pick a platform and go from there, you are close to being done, you have the hard stuff figured out.
  3. Quote:
    This will be my second build. My first computer I built about 3 years back out of high quality components has been a top-notch performer.

    This time around, I need to build on a tight budget. All I need is a computer for my wife to surf the internet using a cable modem. She does a lot of internet chatting and very light game play. We are talking Solitaire here, plus a few role playing games such as Myst. She may do light photo editing with Photoshop Elements or something similar. Light word processing such as MSWorks. Internal hard disk storage space should be 80 to 120GB or so. She should get by fine on 512MB to 1GB memory. I already have a monitor.

    If my budget is $500, what would you folks suggest would be the most bang for my buck for the case, PS, MB (incl sound), CPU, memory, VC and HD? Is it even possible to build a PC using the terms quality and tight budget?

    This computer will replace a $400 piece of #%^#$ by EMachines that did not even last two years. Thanks for your help. :)


    Throwing Photoshop Elements into the equation, we can assume ram and CPU are the highest priority.

    Here's a short list that'll put your wife on the Photoshop Editing/ Myspace browsing, internet typing haven that'll make her give you the honey moon most rich bachelors dream of.

    AMD X2 Brisbane 3600+ $89.00
    DFI Ultra-II AM2 Nforce 4 Ultra Motherboard $89.00
    Combo makes both the above $165

    Kingston Value 2x 1GB $120

    MSI 6200LE 256mb $29

    Xclio 450BL 450 Watt $38

    Western Digital 160GB SATA $53

    Cooler Master Centurion 5 $45

    That total puts you at $451 before taxes and shipping. Every piece of that is quality 100%. The video-card isn't performance, but the quality is good. It's an MSI card, has HDTV out, VGA, DVI and I guarantee it's enough power for "Solitaire".

    You have $50 below budget, you can use $30 on a DVD burner, extra on a better video-card maybe?
  4. Thanks to all who have replied. All good advice.

    I really appreciate your itemized list of quality components that fit the bill, NamelessMC. That is just what I was looking for. Thanks again.
  5. Seconded the parts except the psu. You can get a Fortron 400w+.

    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=108088
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