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Good budget CPU and Mobo combo

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April 13, 2008 2:51:24 AM

I am helping my friend upgrade on an extremely slim budget. About the only thing I can use from his current computer is the case and DVD-RW. He as already bought 2 gigs of Corsair DDR2 6400C4 but I have a remaining budget of 275.00 for a processor, motherboard, video, and PSU. He wants to play Crysis, yes, I know I laughed too.
I was thinking of an AMD 5000+ BE for the processor and probably an ECS board even though I have not built anything ECS it seems to offer decent number of features for the price. I also chose the ECS because it would give him the option of upgrading to a Phenom chip later on. Let me know what you think and other suggestions would be great.

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

Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
April 13, 2008 3:45:20 AM

Maybe I'm totally wrong here. But shouldn't we worry about the video card first with the budget of $275? I'd imagine $130 for video card, $65-70 for CPU, $75-80 for mobo, and exceed the budget by buying a $50 PSU.
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April 13, 2008 6:31:35 AM

I would avoid ECS...those are the cheep MB's Fry's uses for the weekly "combo" sales and the return desk is filed with them marked with "return to vender" stickers.
April 13, 2008 7:24:51 AM

He is buying in increments so I am slowing taking him to his max. I wanted to get something decent for processor/motherboard. I know ECS makes some pretty cheap boards, but I thought I would try it if it sucks return it for something else. If it takes as long as I think it will to get him to part with money and buy these items, the next gen of video cards will be out and I might sell him my card at a discount.
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April 13, 2008 8:05:59 AM

The 5000+ BE doesn't come with a HSF, so you'd have to spend another $15-25 for a HSF. I'd go with the cheapest x2 AMD and a 690 chipset mobo to keep costs down. Not a big fan of ECS mobo's, but it works for some. The PSU, I'd go with the Antec 380w or better and maybe a 3850 256mb GPU, because it'll be the cheapest and best you can get around $120 or so. This combo will put you over budget by about $20-40 or so. This will not be a good performer w/Crysis, but will be able to play it on the lower settings.
April 13, 2008 11:07:02 AM

The ECS 780G is a very nice board. Actually I think it's probably a better board than the competing Gigibyte version.

Just because a brand may or may not have a great reputation doesn't say much about a particular product, unless you've tested it and used it yourself.

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April 14, 2008 12:16:49 AM

bardia said:
The ECS 780G is a very nice board. Actually I think it's probably a better board than the competing Gigibyte version.

Just because a brand may or may not have a great reputation doesn't say much about a particular product, unless you've tested it and used it yourself.

Are you using the ECS 780G board? If so, can you give us your experience with it? Why is it better than the Gigabyte board? I'm curious about the board, since I don't have it. I've had some bad experiences with ECS boards in the past, so I tend to stay away from them. That is why I stated that I'm not a big fan of them. This doesn't mean they are bad, but in my experience from the past, I'd rather spend $20 more and get a different board.
April 14, 2008 1:27:51 AM

Hi Luny.

I build a computer at work with the ECS 780g. The board looks very nice, is well layed out, and has bios options that are clear and fairly easy to navigate.

The Gigabyte board that I replaced it with for the 2nd system we built also appears to be a good board, but has a few things that irritate me. It only has one 3-pin case fan connector, has slightly less copper cooling on the board itself, and has some very confusing bios options regarding how it handles AHCI mode. Additionally I had problems installing vista in AHCI mode on the Gigibyte do to a windows related bug.

I would recommend both boards, but considering it's over 20% cheaper, I think the ECS board is overall my favorite choice.
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April 14, 2008 1:54:10 AM

bardia said:
Hi Luny.

I build a computer at work with the ECS 780g. The board looks very nice, is well layed out, and has bios options that are clear and fairly easy to navigate.

The Gigabyte board that I replaced it with for the 2nd system we built also appears to be a good board, but has a few things that irritate me. It only has one 3-pin case fan connector, has slightly less copper cooling on the board itself, and has some very confusing bios options regarding how it handles AHCI mode. Additionally I had problems installing vista in AHCI mode on the Gigibyte do to a windows related bug.

I would recommend both boards, but considering it's over 20% cheaper, I think the ECS board is overall my favorite choice.

Well that is good to know. Like I said before, I've had some issues with ECS boards, but try to be neutral as possible. I try and recommend boards that I'm familiar with or have some knowledge on. It sounds like the ECS board is pretty good, but some of the reviews that I've read have had some issues like tech support and some issues with Phenom CPU's. Of coarse these can be subjective to the poster and their ability to do the right thing, but just was curious to have a different point of view. Knowledge is everything and is very important when deciding on what to buy.
April 14, 2008 1:56:58 AM

A work computer is not a gamer's computer and no matter how "well" the ECS MB at work is running -now- history shows the brand to be a steaming P.O.S. that has a short life span.
100% false economy.
Better to grab a lower end Asus MB with a 590 chipset.

Anyway you look at it the person he is building for and what he wants to do with it needs to throw another $200 into the pot and grab a 8800GT/GTS 512 with the G92 GPU....and use Win XP.

If you check the weekly newspaper adverts from Fry's you may find a AMD 6000+/MB combo....return the MB (ECS) and the 6000+ is only $111
I have never seen an ECS MB that would OC and the 6000+ is 3Ghz stock with 2MB of L2 and will OC as high as any Optron.
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April 14, 2008 2:31:36 AM

ZOldDude said:
A work computer is not a gamer's computer and no matter how "well" the ECS MB at work is running -now- history shows the brand to be a steaming P.O.S. that has a short life span.
100% false economy.
Better to grab a lower end Asus MB with a 590 chipset.

Anyway you look at it the person he is building for and what he wants to do with it needs to throw another $200 into the pot and grab a 8800GT/GTS 512 with the G92 GPU....and use Win XP.

If you check the weekly newspaper adverts from Fry's you may find a AMD 6000+/MB combo....return the MB (ECS) and the 6000+ is only $111
I have never seen an ECS MB that would OC and the 6000+ is 3Ghz stock with 2MB of L2 and will OC as high as any Optron.

I'd like to know what you tell Fry's when you bring back the mobo to them and not the CPU?
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