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Yet another "help me build my budget rig" post.

Last response: in Systems
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July 25, 2007 5:37:58 PM

OK, guys, I am looking at putting together a new rig for as little as possible. My current system is LAUGHABLE: AMD athlon 2100+, 512 DDR and a radeon 9600se. Only thing I intend to re-use is my 450w antec PSU which has been rock solid for 3 yrs. I have an unopened XP home CD I got from work so I dont need an OS.

ON TO THE BUILD: I can get this system pre-assembled for about 500 bucks. Please give me your thoughts on it.

AMD Athlon 64 x2 4200 +

ECS nForce 4m -1 mobo

2gig (2x 1gig) DDR2 800 mhz

250gig hitachi 7200 RPM hdd

comes with a 400w PSU, but like I said I can yank my old one and put it in there.

Only thing I am missing is a video card. I need to keep the card around a hundred bucks if at all possible. I am using it for gaming, I basically want it to be able to run any game I throw at it. It doesnt have to play everything on max settings, but I DO want it to run REALLY well and look halfway decent. My monitor for now is a 15 in dinosaur.

So, any feedback is appreciated. I can put stuff together myself if need be, but frankly I dont see how Id be able to do it any cheaper than buying this pre-assembled rig. Thanks for any help, guys!

More about : build budget rig post

July 25, 2007 6:43:49 PM

Here's another option I can get for around the same price. Again, it would need a video card. Any feedback?

CASE: CyberPower X-Titan Tower 420Watt Case with 8 Open Bays & Side Window (($40 off Mail-in Rebate)BLACK COLOR)
CPU: (Socket AM2) AMD Athlon™64 X2 4200+ Dual-Core CPU w/ HyperTransport Technology
MOTHERBOARD: (Socket AM2)MSI K9N4 SLI-F nForce 500 SLI Chipset DDR2/800 SATA-II RAID MBoard w/ Dual 16x PCI-Express
MEMORY: (Req.DDR2 MainBoard)1GB (2x512MB) PC6400 DDR2/800 Dual Channel Memory (Corsair Value Select or Major Brand)
VIDEO CARD: None, or On-Board 16X PCI-Express Shared 128MB Integrated 3D Graphics Video Card
VIDEO CARD 2: NONE
LCD Monitor: NONE
HARD DRIVE: Single Hard Drive (160GB SATA-II 3.0Gb/s 8MB Cache 7200RPM HDD)
Data Hard Drive: NONE
Optical Drive: (Special Price) 18X DVD±R/±RW + CD-R/RW DRIVE DUAL LAYER (BLACK COLOR)
Optical Drive 2: NONE
SOUND: HIGH DEFINITION ON-BOARD 7.1 AUDIO
July 25, 2007 7:24:03 PM

Here's a sample budget build; it is not an exact match for your needs, but can be tweaked (I'm a little busy atm):

Qty. Product Description Unit Price Savings Total Price

Rosewill R604-P BK 120mm Fan ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Model #: R604-P BK
Item #: N82E16811147058
$39.99 -$7.00 Instant $32.99

GIGABYTE GA-MA69VM-S2 Socket AM2 AMD 690V Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
Model #: GA-MA69VM-S2
Item #: N82E16813128043
$58.99 $58.99

Update FSP Group (Fortron Source) AX400-PN ATX12V 400W Power Supply - Retail
Model #: AX400-PN
Item #: N82E16817104953
$43.99 -$4.00 Instant $39.99

AMD Athlon 64 X2 3600+ Brisbane 1.9GHz Socket AM2 Processor Model ADO3600DDBOX - Retail
Model #: ADO3600DDBOX
Item #: N82E16819103046
$61.99 $61.99

A-DATA 1GB (2 x 512MB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model ADQVE1908K - Retail
Model #: ADQVE1908K
Item #: N82E16820211064
$48.99 $48.99

NEC Black 1.44MB 3.5" Internal Floppy Drive - OEM
Model #: FD1231H-302
Item #: N82E16821152005
$6.99 $6.99

Western Digital Caviar SE WD800JD 80GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
Model #: WD800JD
Item #: N82E16822135106
$41.99 $41.99

Zonet ZFM5621-MT 56Kbps Motorola V.92 56K Data Fax Modem - Retail
Model #: ZFM5621-MT
Item #: N82E16825130008
$6.99 $13.98

Subtotal: $305.91
==============================
Among the changes, that mobo has integrated graphics that you don't need, but is otherwise inexpensive. You'll probably ditch the floppy and the modem, maybe the PSU if you trust yours.
Especially after taking out the PSU, you can easily up the size of the hard drive and then get a 7600GT, 7900GS, or x1950Pro to go in it.
Related resources
July 25, 2007 7:28:31 PM

If you can't be bothered to build it yourself, then go with the first one, buy either a X1950Pro or X1950XT (Don't even bother with midrange GF8 or HD2600). Make sure your PSU can run those cards.

If you can't afford to at least get a X1950Pro online (About $135), then I'd seriously consider putting that computer on hold and saving some more money.
July 25, 2007 8:49:17 PM

Emp, I dont at all mind building it myself, but that system seems to have great components for the same amount of money I'd pay to put it together myself. I could spend 135 on a card, the whole thing would run about 600 bucks + shipping going with the $135 card. Not a bad deal at all.

Jtt- that seems like a great deal. All from newegg? Would just need to add a CD/DVD drive.
July 25, 2007 9:00:32 PM

500$ get you quite a bit this days..:

Rosewill R604-P BK 120mm Fan ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail $32.99
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 (Perpendicular Recording) ST3250620AS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s $67.99
GIGABYTE GA-MA69GM-S2H Socket AM2 AMD 690G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail $79.99
POWERCOLOR X1950 PRO 256MB Radeon X1950PRO 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card - Retail $149.99
$30.00 Mail-in Rebate
Crucial Ballistix 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel $124.99
$45.00 Mail-in Rebate
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+(65W) Windsor 2.2GHz Socket AM2 Processor Model ADO4200CUBOX - Retail $79.99

Total:$535.94
- $75 rebates = $460

Sweet deal if you ask me :) 


July 25, 2007 9:01:41 PM

The thing is that they give you a **** mobo to cut expenses. But I guess unless you really care about tinkering around and quality of the mobo you don't have much to worry.

Here try this instead, much better build. Just make sure your PSU can handle the X1950XT:

LITE-ON Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 20X DVD±R DVD Burner With 12X DVD-RAM Write - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GIGABYTE GA-M61P-S3 Socket AM2 NVIDIA GeForce 6100 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Brisbane 2.6GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 Processor - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Western Digital Caviar SE WD1600JS 160GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAPPHIRE 100186L Radeon X1950XT 256MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 VIVO HDCP Video Card - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

COOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel, SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

About $585, and this way you get A LOT more performance for your money (especially in the graphics department) and also for a bit less (Like $50 less) than what you had originally planned to spend. This should run around max/high settings @ 1024x768 or maybe even 1280x1024 for around a year or 18 months.
July 25, 2007 9:10:03 PM

chihlidog said:
Emp, I dont at all mind building it myself, but that system seems to have great components for the same amount of money I'd pay to put it together myself. I could spend 135 on a card, the whole thing would run about 600 bucks + shipping going with the $135 card. Not a bad deal at all.

Jtt- that seems like a great deal. All from newegg? Would just need to add a CD/DVD drive.


Honostly.. Prebuild will have some crappy RAM, no real Video and a cheap sucky mobo from ECM..

With your own build at least you can get the best components for the same price (read above).
- Crucial is pretty much the best 6400 RAM you can buy
- Pick your own mobo
- Get a solid GPU :o 
- Pick a case that you like
- Get a similar harddrive and the same CPU

If you still can't see the advantage of building yourself.. They will rip you off pretty good :) 
July 25, 2007 9:32:45 PM

$600 on the other hand will get you an awesome Core Duo setup:



Rosewill R604-P BK 120mm Fan ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail $32.99
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 (Perpendicular Recording) ST3250620AS 250GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s $67.99
POWERCOLOR X1950 PRO 256MB Radeon X1950PRO 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card - Retail $149.99
$30.00 Mail-in Rebate
Crucial Ballistix 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit $124.99
$45.00 Mail-in Rebate
GIGABYTE GA-P35-S3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retail $89.99
Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 Conroe 2.33GHz LGA 775 Processor Model BX80557E6550 - Retail $184.00
LITE-ON Black 20X DVD+R $30.99



Subtotal: $680.94
- $75 rebates = $605.94

Your powersupply will hold and this setup will blow the roof off the prebuild you 1st came up with.
July 25, 2007 9:35:43 PM

You're aware that at his price point he might be better off with an AMD based build and getting a X1950XT so he can get better FPS on games? but besides that, the X2 5000+ I mentioned will perform very similarly to that E6550.
July 25, 2007 10:16:47 PM

emp said:
You're aware that at his price point he might be better off with an AMD based build and getting a X1950XT so he can get better FPS on games? but besides that, the X2 5000+ I mentioned will perform very similarly to that E6550.


Quite a statement...

http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/intel/showdoc.aspx... mp;p=7

Looks like E6550 rips X2 5600+ apart, but you are right, X1950XT will outpreform X1900Pro in games even with help of a faster CPU. I would go for E6550 build myself, it will put a few FPS on top so X1900Pro will not lag far behind and just because it is so much faster in everything but games.


July 25, 2007 10:32:22 PM

you're right about the E6550 being faster (I used the E6400 as a reference), but it's not by too much and won't be noticeable in games, since most games are usually much more dependant on the GPU (There are few though, that will be more CPU-based like Supreme Commander). I'd go with the E6550 if he can somehow wiggle in the X1950XT, but I stand by the whole "Worst two places to cut on gaming PCs are Graphics card and PSUs".
July 25, 2007 10:57:13 PM

emp said:
you're right about the E6550 being faster (I used the E6400 as a reference), but it's not by too much and won't be noticeable in games, since most games are usually much more dependant on the GPU (There are few though, that will be more CPU-based like Supreme Commander). I'd go with the E6550 if he can somehow wiggle in the X1950XT, but I stand by the whole "Worst two places to cut on gaming PCs are Graphics card and PSUs".


Well, if gaming is a big issue he will get at least 10% - 15% better preformance out of AMD build with a X1950XT (25% in best cases). It makes a prebuild offer look like a joke at any rate :) 
July 25, 2007 11:07:27 PM

Correcto mundo on the prebuilt! We meet eye to eye finally, and yeah he stated he wanted to game so I focused on it. Well time to get back to GRAW2, I'm getting sniped on Act 2 :S
July 26, 2007 2:54:12 AM

I appreciate the input everyone. No doubt I will be back asking more questions before I finalize my purchases. Thanks!
!