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Church computer

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April 12, 2008 12:25:50 AM

I am building a new computer for my church that will be used for powerpoint during our services. Potentially in a few months, we may begin recording the services while using power point and using it to compress the video so multitasking is a must. The budget is $675 and not a penny more. Less would be even better. I think I am going to trim the 8800gts 320 back to a 2600 xt or something. Any suggestions would be great. The only other concern I have is the power supply. I know it is big enough but is the quality ok? Don't need a monitor or OS - will be using XP pro

Linkworld 3210-04-C2628 Black/ Silver Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Model #: 3210-04-C2628
Item #: N82E16811164040

$22.99


ASUS M3A AM2+/AM2 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
Model #: M3A
Item #: N82E16813131234

$89.99

EVGA 320-P2-N811-AR GeForce 8800GTS 320MB 320-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail
Model #: 320-P2-N811-AR
Item #: N82E16814130082

$144.99

Antec Earthwatts EA430 ATX12V v2.0 430W Power Supply - Retail
Model #: EA430
Item #: N82E16817371006
49.99

AMD Phenom 9550 Agena 2.2GHz Socket AM2+ 95W Quad-Core Processor Model HD9550WCGHBOX - Retail
Model #: HD9550WCGHBOX
Item #: N82E16819103251

$199.99

OCZ Platinum 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model OCZ2P8002GK - Retail
Model #: OCZ2P8002GK
Item #: N82E16820227089

$45.99

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST3500630AS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
Model #: ST3500630AS
Item #: N82E16822148136

$99.99

With shipping it is just over $682 Need to trim a little back

More about : church computer

April 12, 2008 12:36:08 AM

i dont think you need that kind of video card try something like an 8600 series. RAM could be slower as that will save cost and get mainstream RAM like modules you could buy in best buy or some electronics store. Also the PSU is more than enough try scaling that back a little too.
April 12, 2008 12:39:17 AM

Everything looks good. :) . Only thing you should change is the video card. You won't need a 8800GTS for vid. editing/presentation. Just get a cheap vid card that has about 256+ MB RAM. You might want to look in to a Q6600 + P35-DS3L with the saved money.
Related resources
April 12, 2008 12:47:09 AM

you could save alot of money by going with a cheaper video card. An 8800GTS would be a gaming-grade card. Look for something like an 8600GT, or even an ATi Radeon HD3650 or something similar.
Anonymous
April 12, 2008 12:54:49 AM

yes go with a midrange card, even a 8600 gts... but i'd honestly up the ram amount to 4 gigs, the stuff your going to be working with (movies, compressing and what not) i'd imagine would greatly benefit from more ram, it will also extend the life of the system while only increasing the cost by 20$
April 12, 2008 12:55:35 AM

Well, you while your going the AMD way, and you want "some" video to play with, for the work your saying. Well, you can cheapen the video process with that new AMD chipset ( witch i forgot the reference, its the 780 or the 690, too tired atm to search) and a HD3450 (for example) and activate the Hybrid Crossfire on that board. Youll get several VGAs output and at least one HDMI.

You really dont need someting like 8800 to do video editing. These fancy 3D cards dont nothing in terms of video editing. You just need to rely on HDD and CPU power.

You got there your trim.

Yeah !! Its the 780G that makes HD Video playable even with a Sempron 3200+ CPU.


Youll save up some money that can give you a "free-lunch", or better , money for the Cheapest HDD you can find just to slap your SO. Your not trying to do video editing in your SO Installed HDD are ya ?

My 2cents
April 12, 2008 1:15:06 AM

For a point of view on how low of system specs you could go to pull this of: It can be done on a Pentium D 805. Easily. Even a Pentium III, if using a hardware capture card and don't need to do post processing. The graphics cards listed here are a cruel joke. There is no gaiming here, only 2D. Video outputs are the deciding factor. What does the proxima you plan to use take for input? VGA? DVI? Integrated graphics gets the job done. Save your church some money; lower your specs a bit.

Now, for reality: Buy from a large OEM. You're 24 years old. Do you plan to stick around your church for the next few years? Who's gonna be the one on the phone doing tech support? Warranty? Dell is waiting.
April 12, 2008 1:20:15 AM

joefriday said:
For a point of view on how low of system specs you could go to pull this of: It can be done on a Pentium D 805. Easily. Even a Pentium III, if using a hardware capture card. Save your church some money; lower your specs a bit.

Now, for reality: Buy from a large OEM. You're 24 years old. Do you plan to stick around your church for the next few years? Who's gonna be the one on the phone doing tech support? Warranty? Dell is waiting.


that's a good point actually. just pick up a dell dimension 530 and get some extra memory and a video card for it. that should work just fine.
April 12, 2008 1:39:01 AM

Yea, I probably be there for tech support. I don't graduate from college for another year and a half so I'll be around at least that long. There are other people at church that could help with support as well.

I will change the graphics card. If I go with the 78G, I don't have Crossfire experience. I need one VGA output for the main monitor and then a second VGA output that goes to the splitter for the 3 projectors and secondary monitor. Will that work ok if I use the onboard port for the main monitor and the 2400 for the secondary monitors?

Right now we have:
xp2100+
Some gigabyte mobo
512 ram
fx5600
April 12, 2008 7:21:30 AM

Using the hardware you already have, the FX5600 supports twinview, so all you'd need is a DVI to VGA adapter to get dual vga output on that card. That will give you two VGA outputs like you need. The XP 2100 is a bit on the weak side, but it will put power points up like nobody's business. $8 for the adapter (or find someone to give you one locally, they come bundled with graphics cards quite often) and that old girl is ready to go for the time bieng. If nothing else, that will allow you to test this power point system, without having to spend money on a new rig just yet.


Now, about your capture setup, do you have an idea in mind about how you're going to capture this stuff? Will it be through DV camera, transferred to computer, and require encoding into the appropriate format, or will it be captured into the final format using a capture card of some sort? Will you be broadcasting this through streaming video via internet, or by other means, such as download only, or through DVD media? Will it be Flash, WMV, or some sort of mpeg/avi? I have a feeling these files will be pretty big if you want both audio and video. We're probably looking at around 300 MB for a 50 minute Church service, using the codec like WMV or DivX on low quality settings. That's gonna require some serious internet speed if it's going to be download only.
April 12, 2008 9:43:53 AM

If you intend to build a new system, a dual core is perfect for what you want to do. Any AMD X2 chip will do very well or even a Pentium D dual core.

I have a media center setup with a Pentium D 940 presler and it plays a movie from the hard drive with power dvd, burns a dvd image to the hard drive with 1click dvd copy pro and also does folding @ home and the cpu is 60-80% load with 1g ram ddr2.

Im not a fan of ECS motherboards but Frys Electronics has a sweet deal on an ECS board with the GeForce 7050 onboard video and an AMD 5200 X2 cpu for $99. It also supports HD video playback and HD audio. Its a micro board and can fit in a micro atx case to fit in a tight area.

I also got a Corsair 450 watt psu for $79 and a $30 rebate making it $49. DDR2 memory, 1G $22.

You can easily get a system for around 500 at this level that will last a very long time to come. I just built this system as a spare to use for installing programs & downloading to keep from junking up my gaming rig...
April 12, 2008 11:10:10 AM

joefriday said:

Now, for reality: Buy from a large OEM. You're 24 years old. Do you plan to stick around your church for the next few years? Who's gonna be the one on the phone doing tech support? Warranty? Dell is waiting.


Dunno how the tech support is in your country. But in my advice, a we are talking a low spec PC here, NEVER but NEVER buy from a large OEM. The PSUs are mostly refursbished ones, the are ussually loads of problems when taling about SO, and their always more expensive than mounting yourself just because they offer you stuff you DONT need, and you miss stuff you WILL need.

In laptops you cant run from them, but in Desktops, dont fall for it.
April 12, 2008 2:41:22 PM

We will be using a DV camera and capturing it that way then compressing it. I know the size requirements will be very large. The plan is not perfected yet and we probably won't start until we figure out what resolution is acceptable. The short term goal is to be able to stream it to the internet live. How much processing power will does that take? We will probably use DivX for the compression.

On a side note, what kind of upload speed would be necessary to stream video at low quality?
April 12, 2008 3:15:53 PM

For that budget you may better off buying a computer from Dell or HP. It will come in build and ready to use. You won't be accountable for it and it will be covered by the company warranty.

Save yourself some trouble. You can get a ready to use desktop. Your name or integrity won't be question.

There are multi-media desktop for that price. Sometimes people have this impression that you can create a cadillac for less money. Be careful.
April 12, 2008 4:07:50 PM

I appreciate all of you who said that I could buy one just as good but I would prefer to build it. I am not looking to build a cadillac for 675 but I like to choose exactly what goes in to my computer. Plus building them is 90% of the fun :)  Besides, the one that we are currently using is about 7 years old, home-built and it hasn't broke yet. I think that building computers yourself allows you to insure only quality parts go into the machine. In addition, I don't need an OS. Formerly a microsoft employee went to our church and hooked us up with free copies of XP Pro for all of our computers. I plan to continue using that instead of Vista which will be on any computer I buy and I won't have to put up with all the bloatware on a new computer.
April 12, 2008 5:05:13 PM

You should buy the specs I suggested and use the money you save to get an additional hard drive or be sure to burn old archives on cdr or dvd to keep your hard drive as free as possible. Is this video to be streamed live or from a file? If its from a file be sure to run it from your hard drive for faster data transfer and not from the dvd drive.

An X2 or PD dual core chip is plenty for a long time to come.
April 12, 2008 5:07:56 PM

Here's how I hear things. You're looking to build a new computer to do a few things that you don't think the old computer will be fast enough for. I, like some others that have posted before me, disagree with that. You have plenty of processing power to do power point presentations and no fancy newer video card will help.
The trick becomes this; your ISP upload. If it's anything like my ISP (patmedia.net) then it's around 1Mbps which is about an eighth of a MB/s. It sucks for streaming anything which quality, ask me how I know, lol.
The uploading speed will become your bottle neck before the old PC. It really depends on how many people will be viewing the stream. If I were you I'd reach out to many of the webcast video sites and ask them. Look at Shoutcast TV for some ideas but ultimately you'll probably want to use VLC. I personally would avoid winamp to stream even audio.
Now here's what I would try if I were you, before buying any new computer hardware. First find out as much information regarding your ISP's upload. Might even want to contact them and ask if they have some restrictions to hosting content. A lot of them will catch you and cancel your service is the bandwidth on upload gets a bit out of control. I doubt this will be an issue considering you'll stream what, 2 or 3 times a week for a couple hours. Anyways, get a cheap webcam and use THAT as your streaming video source. They are sometimes given away for free at various technology events or computer expos. What this will do is 2 things. 1st, give you an already smaller video resolution ideal for streaming through the internet and 2nd, a backup video incase you have trouble with either the webcam or the DV camera! When you're in this business of consulting you learn quick to have an easy to implement fall back plan and a great backup routine.
Once you've tried out some of my suggestions and you still want a new computer; get the cheapest x2 you can grab and figure out your video card choices pending the motherboard selection. I like the idea of the integrated video with an add-on card so you can use a projector for the service. With keeping the multi-display, invest in the program Ultramon. You will be glad you did if using Windows XP.
Another thing to consider, strip down XP by disabling unused services and really clean it up. I would also highly recommend, when you get everything setup, to do a DriveImage XML backup so any troubles could be solved with a quick 1 boot CD, 1 data DVD restore for future tech support. Might want to consider multiple small hard drives for storing backups and doing the video stream --> output file for compressing the larger DV data into a mpeg4 file.
If any of the above is confusing let me know.
April 12, 2008 5:33:52 PM

xp pro is a 64 bit os right? id really consider getting at least 4 gigs of ram. powerpoint with music presentations loves to gobble ram, and it would shorten compression speeds with the right cpu.
April 12, 2008 5:43:52 PM

get the 780g and skip the vid card. if there is a need to upgrade in the futre your golden. if you go Dell you're SOL. you will probably end up with better components too

how many videao outputs do you need?

OBG vid is basicly a 3450, it can handle 2. add in a 3450 or better, it can handle 2 more if you need them.

April 12, 2008 6:04:26 PM

No, don't skip video card. In my old church before I moved to get married, we were running an old Socket A system, doing exactly what you want to do.

Get the parts you are saying....but...for redundancy sake, get 2 hard drives, even smaller ones instead of just one. Also even a card like the 8500gt will be more than sufficient for what you want. We ran an Athlon XP 1800+ with 512 mb of ram and an fx 5200 video card. Works fine still as far as I'm aware.

Look at the 8500-8600gt series for saving money. Just make sure you get one with dual monitor support. What you want to do is have your primary monitor be your computer's monitor, secondary monitor needs to run out to a video switch of some kind, that you plug in, and it gives you more outputs. That's how we did, then we could output to a projector and a monitor, and had room to add more monitors if needed. It works perfectly!

That's how you are going to want to do it. I say get 2 hard drives that way if you are recording, keep your system files on one drive, your information/services/etc on the other, if there's ever a system crash your information is safely on the 2nd drive, so you can reformat and reinstall on the 1st hard drive if needed. Also, not all XP pro is a 64 bit OS, but you can find it. That's what I recommend if you want more than 4 gb of ram, and if you want the best compatibility.

Also, try this program.

http://easyworship.com/home.php

My old Church has an older version of this program, and it was like 400 bucks, but I'm telling you, if you can convince your church, it is WORTH it!!! It gives you songs, also you can add your own in, so like if you want to display your lyrics during song services, you can display it through that program. You can use many different backgrounds, even video backgrounds if I'm not mistaken. Also, it gave you 2-3 versions of the Bible, so if you are showing scripture when the pastor is preaching, done. Again, backgrounds, everything like that. Also, you mention powerpoint, it will display your powerpoint presentations from within that program, so you don't have to keep swapping programs. Pretty nice because you could have your prayer requests and announcements up at the appropriate times. It also even used the powerpoint settings, like if you had transitions set within powerpoint, it would use those transitions for you.

It was nice because ours let you do a schedule, like you made a linear list of everything you needed, then you could just put it up as you need it. But it also gave you a small preview window where you could see what was going to show on the main screens before you put it up. Very nice. It even had the options for nursery alerts. You assign parents numbers, then if you had a problem with a kid in the nursery, flash the number in the corner of the screen so they knew to go get their kid. That's how we did it. So do it how you want, but that's how I recommend it. For video input, probably would need some kind of add in card. That's how we had to do it. So anyway, have fun with it, try that program, I think they give you a free trial.
April 12, 2008 6:57:27 PM

780g is equivalent to an nvidia 8400gs in performance. skip buying an extra video card unless you need more than 2 outputs
April 12, 2008 10:49:26 PM

I know we don't need another computer to do what we currently do now. The one we have has been fine for 5+ years. I am getting a new one because it is finally in the budget and the one we have is a bit sluggish running the presenter view in power point which some people like to use. In addition, the quad core processor will decrease our encoding times drastically.
April 12, 2008 11:26:23 PM

You shouldnt need to decode your video. You can set up a DV camera like a web cam and stream direct.
April 13, 2008 2:09:34 AM

I think a quad core is overkill for that project. Again, for the sake of the budget you should go dual core, AMD or Intel is plenty.

I think your minds made up to overspend on the CPU. If you can, then go for it but you could get so much more of a system with other added components if you save on the CPU.
April 13, 2008 2:17:09 AM

If you can reuse the old case and cd/dvd drive you could save some $$ and get a Q6600.
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 Kentsfield 2.4GHz LGA 775 Quad-Core Processor Model BX80562Q6600 - Retail $243.99
GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX All Solid Capacitor Intel Motherboard - Retail $89.99
A-DATA 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory $42.99
SAPPHIRE 100236L Radeon HD 3650 512MB $74.99 ($64.99 after $10.00 Mail-In Rebate )
CORSAIR CMPSU-450VX ATX12V V2.2 450W Power Supply $74.99 ($59.99 after $15.00 Mail-In Rebate)
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM $99.99
Subtotal:$626.94
Shipping:$14.46 (MN)
Grand Total:$641.40 from Newegg
April 13, 2008 3:13:28 AM

Thermaltake SopranoRS VG7000BWS Black SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
Model #: VG7000BWS
Item #: N82E16811133046

$59.99

(2) Link Depot 3 ft. SATA II WITH LOCKING (90 degree) cable Model SATA2L-3-UVB - Retail
Model #: SATA2L-3-UVB
Item #: N82E16812189143

$4.98

GIGABYTE GA-MA78GM-S2H AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
Model #: GA-MA78GM-S2H
Item #: N82E16813128090

$99.99

KWORLD X-Pert DVD Maker PCI Card VS-L883D PCI Interface - Retail
Model #: VS-L883D
Item #: N82E16815100120

$9.99

Antec earthwatts EA430 ATX12V v2.0 430W Power Supply - Retail
Model #: EA430
Item #: N82E16817371006

$49.99

AMD Phenom 9550 Agena 2.2GHz Socket AM2+ 95W Quad-Core Processor Model HD9550WCGHBOX - Retail
Model #: HD9550WCGHBOX
Item #: N82E16819103251

$199.99

OCZ Platinum 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model
OCZ2P8002GK - Retail
Model #: OCZ2P8002GK
Item #: N82E16820227089

$45.99

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

$40.99

SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S203B - OEM
Model #: SH-S203B
Item #: N82E16827151153

$26.99

SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S203N - OEM
Model #: SH-S203N
Item #: N82E16827151154

$34.99

HIPER HFF-2N12N 120mm Case Fan - Retail
Model #: HFF-2N12N
Item #: N82E16835224018

Total $616.80 With shipping

I am set on the quad-core because it will greatly reduce encoding times when we compress video files. I changed the case because the original case didn't support the MicroATX board. Since the new case only has one fan I added a second one. We are probably going to use the old computer for something so I can't use any parts. I also added a second Hard drive for the OS so the 500GB will be for storage only.

I appreciate all your suggestions. I will double check tomorrow to see if we will be needing the old computer for anything. If not, I will probably go with Spencercpu1983's suggestion.
April 13, 2008 3:44:28 AM

If you plan on overclocking, then build your own (but Phenoms don't OC for crap). If it's going to be at stock, then get This Deal (Q6600, 3Gb, 500Gb, $450). Great price, and comes with customer support. You can add an 8600GT or similar video card for $70AR or less. This set up will do everything you need and much more for around $550 total.
April 13, 2008 4:13:40 AM

The Q6600 is about 16% faster than the AMD Phenom X4 9550 for Divx 6.8 video encoding.
April 13, 2008 6:54:28 PM

wow, can't say I agree with much between this post and the last one I made except for the integrated graphics motherboard suggestion and dual core cpu over the quad.
Some of you have been misinformed if you think windows xp pro is only 64-bit, and the person correcting, Ohiou_grad_o6, you honestly believe the 64-bit version of xp is more compatible than the 32-bit? If so, I'm floored and speachless. I hope I read your reply wrong.
With older software that the church might use form time to time, go with 32-bit xp, it has 16-bit application support in the worse case scenario and nothing you plan to do requires 4GB of ram or a quad core. Here's the skinny; Answer my few questions and you'll be given some great answers. Ignore my information and build your gaming/video editing pc for you church and have them confused as to why they upgraded.
I don't think you shouldn't build a new pc but you need to look at where the money can be FELT. Encoding video isn't one of them and what about my webcam idea? You can then record higher def material with the DV and stream it to the computer where it can later crunch it down with a codec of your choice. A quad core won't speed up this processes like, "oh hey, people haven't left yet, and it's already 10% as apposed to 5%." Truely money should be spent elsewhere in the design. CPU and GPU are trivial items for streaming on the internet.
What kind of streaming do you want again? Is it real-time or do you want to stream the feed after the service with a higher quality from the compressed DV feed? It sounds like you don't know what you want and avoiding my ISP upload questions is going to get you stuck between a rock and a hard place.
April 13, 2008 7:39:47 PM

I agree with jprevost. If you stick with using Windows XP be sure to not use XP Home. It only supports a single core process and a dual core or quad core will be wasted.

You will need to go Pro, Media Center 2005 Edition, whichever is cheaper.
April 13, 2008 8:16:12 PM

We will be using XP pro for the operating system. I have not avoided you ISP question either. I did some checking and in order to have decent upload bandwith it's going to cost more than we are going to spend. I think the short term goal will be to record the service and burn it onto a dvd for distribution. I just want the best computer I can build for the 675. Our video needs haven't changed so most of the money is going to extra processing power and storage. I think I will end up going with

Q6600
2GB Adata 800MHz ram
ATI HD 2600
DS3L Gigabyte mobo
80GB HD for OS and programs
500GB HD for storage
430W PSU
2 DVD burners
Capture card
2 80mm case fans for old case

That ends up to 735 with shipping. I think my dad might contribute the extra $$ needed for the build. This saves us room for a mild overclock later if we choose. We will not be switching to Vista yet because I don't want to waste the extra processing power and Ram on background processes in Vista. I want the benefit to be 100% speed.
April 13, 2008 8:28:20 PM

Englander753, we know he'll be using XP Pro. He said he has a few valid licenses around for XP Pro. That's fine, but XP Home is not a detraction here. You've been misinformed about the capabilities of XP Home. It supports Dual and Quadcore processors, but it will not support more than one CPU socket, so no Skulltrail or 4X4 setup with XP Home. Do you see the difference?
April 13, 2008 8:43:26 PM

If we're talking about DVD media now, here's what I would do:

1. Add a bit more ram to your current Athlon XP rig, bring the total ram up to 1 GB if you must (or just get rid of bloatware programs, like antivirus, that suck up all the current ram). That should take care of your power point issues.

2. Get a REAL capture card. The PVR-150 is a great buy at around $50. It will record directly into DVD-compatible mpeg2, with much better quality than that capture card you're going to use, and it takes no CPU usage to run. Win Win Win.

3. Buy a new DVD burner for your current rig.


Done. Total cost: ~$120. Get that DVI-VGA like I suggested for the fx5600 card and it will now do everything you could possibly want. Honestly, I don't have a clue on why you insist on spending the church's money on stuff they don't absolutely need. That extra cash could be used to buy the re-recordable DVD media and cases you'll be using to disseminate your recordings, with plenty left over for other things, like that VGA splitter you'll need to run multiple proximas off just one secondary VGA output, with the extra money put away to pay for those incredibly expensive light bulbs those proximas will be needing in the future.

But the DVD idea seems very time consuming. How many people will be requesting DVDs of services? I remember when I was a young kid, my great grandmother would get audio cassettes from the local church for the service each week, as she wasn't able to attend due to her health. If these are the kind of people in need of this DVD service, it might be doable with just a regular rig like this, as long as there aren't too many copies that need to be made, but it there is a lot of people who need this service, it's just not feasible for someone to sit there and keep feeding the computer new DVDs to record every 15 minutes, for 7 hours on end. A multi burner system will be needed, and although you can do a couple DVD burners on 1 computer and get them to burn simultaneously, you may end up needing an industrial DVD copier. Those aren't cheap at all.

Just my two cents. Do with it what you will.
April 13, 2008 8:44:41 PM

^Hmm...not a bad idea.
April 13, 2008 10:18:09 PM

Well, after racking my brain all afternoon trying different combinations of components, combo deals and free shipping offers, I have come to sad conclusion that a quad-core isn't in the budget. I have decided to add the better capture card that was suggested by joefriday - thanks. For the processor, I choose an e6550 becasue the performance seems to be a little better than the X2 6000 and has more overclocking potential in the future though we may not ever do that. If you have info that the X2 600 is better let me know.

The final specs (I hope) . . .
GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX All Solid Capacitor Intel Motherboard - Retail
$89.99

SAPPHIRE 100206L Radeon HD 2600PRO 256MB 128-bit GDDR2 PCI Express x16 CrossFire Supported Video Card -
Retail
$62.99

Hauppauge WinTV-PVR 150 MCE 274 PCI Interface Tuner Card - Retail
$59.99

Antec earthwatts EA430 ATX12V v2.0 430W Power Supply - Retail
$49.99

Intel Core 2 Duo E6550 Conroe 2.33GHz LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor Model BX80557E6550 - Retail
$169.99

A-DATA 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model
ADQVE1A16K - Retail
$42.99

Western Digital Caviar SE WD800JD 80GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
$40.99

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST3500630AS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM
$99.99

SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S203B - OEM
$26.99

SAMSUNG 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe Black SATA Model SH-S203N - OEM
$34.99

With a couple of cables and some case fans and reusing the old case, the total with shipping is $711.09. I will take care of the part that is over the budget. Any other suggestions would be great becasue I am hopping to order it tonight.
April 13, 2008 11:46:01 PM

Because that requires another $40 for a decent cooler and I am already over budget.
April 14, 2008 12:42:17 AM

You can get the Q6600 for 199 at Microcenter but you have to go into the store to do it. If thats an option, I would find a way to shave 30 bucks off the other items and go for it. I have a stock Q6600 cpu cooler I can mail to you if you find a better deal for an OEM chip. I doubt you will though.

There is quite a bit of difference between the Q6600 and the E6550. If you are dropping down to a dual core then I would suggest getting an AMD 5000+ Black Edition for 89 and OC like no tomorrow. You can get a VERY nice aftermarket CPU cooler and this chip for what you will pay for the E6550.

You are paying 80 more bucks for maybe 10% more stock speeds but the AMD Black Edition will easily surpass the stock speed of the E6550 once you overclock it. If you are truly over budget, still get the AMD Black Edition chip and using this cooler @ newegg...

589 reviews and 89% positive!!
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Get this cooler, you wont be sorry:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Just my 2 cents...
April 14, 2008 1:31:46 AM

I know there is a big difference between the two chips. I tried so hard to put it in but it just wasn't in the budget and I don't live near a microcenter. Thanks for the recommendation on the cooler. I was looking for a cooler around $30. I will probably see how the setup runs as is and get the cooler if we need more speed. I did think about an X2 chip but the E6550 at stock speeds seemed to run better than even the X2 6000 in most of the cpu charts. In addition, we want this computer to last a long time and stability is a must so I don't think I would want to push a chip to its limit. Even if I do OC I will probably only do a mild one to around 2.8 - 3.0GHz

The reason I ended up dropping the Q6600 was the upgraded capture card. It is much better than the one I had previously picked out and can do hardware encoding so I don't need the processor as much. Besides, we are talking one sermon a week so I think we will be able to live with the slower encoding times for now until we get our web page under way. We are a ways away from that right now.

Thanks for all your help guys. I think I will place the order in a little while.
April 14, 2008 2:50:40 AM

It should all do fine. As with most enthusiasts here, we just want to recommend the most bang for the buck.

Good luck...
April 14, 2008 2:52:13 AM

joefriday, thank you for not making me think I was crazy suggestion what I did.
BTW, I think a phenom could be seriously considered here! I started a thread a while ago that was about "Phenom, what is it good for?" and I kid you not I was trying to boil down the perfect application for it. It just so happens that the application was for video encoding where overclocking wouldn't be used.
I think a cheap Phenom, a GA-MA74GM-S2H mobo, some memory, a couple of hard drives, and a couple dvd burners.
I don't think a hardware encoder is necessary because you are post processing these DVD's and is this a DV camera connected with firewire or are you going with analog signal outputs? If going the analog method then yes, go with hardware encoder and a cheaper dual core, infact really cheap because you will no longer need to do the encoding!!! A nice inexpensive x2 would work nicely.
I know exactly how you feel, been there done that btw. I overdid a computer for somebody and felt really stupid afterwords. My clients are always more impressed with how much I resist my urge to upgrade hardware where-ever I see it. Just keep repeating, "this is for my CHURCH! Not me!" and you'll make the right choices.
April 14, 2008 4:10:46 AM

You are exactly right. I was stuck on the phenom because I was building it more for myself than the needs of the church. While it would have been nice, it is not exactly necessary. What we need is a fast stable computer. I probably could have went with something a little cheaper but I talked with my dad and he encouraged me to get the better processor and said that he would pay for any overages. That is why I went with intel. He is on the finance committee so he knows what the church has and doesn't have to spend. This computer, while nice, is not that necessary hence the low budget. Besides, seeing how slow our needs are changing, I think this computer will last a long time. Overclocking may or may not happen - we will have to see how it goes.

"It's for the church, not me" (i say to myself one more time) ;) 
April 14, 2008 4:36:10 AM

jprevost, with the setup I recommended, it would have to depend on a live video feed from the camcorder straight to the computer. As you said, if we transfer the video to the computer through firewire after the recording, all the convenience of a hardware capture card is lost, and a simple encoding program would be needed is all. Since the OP is thinking of DVD media now, if he could just feed the camcorder stream straight to the computer, via s-video or RCA out (I don't what a modern DV camcorder has for outputs, honestly) then the capturing could at least be realtime, and require no post processing, so as soon as the service is done, they could start the DVD burning. With a setup like that, the CPU isn't even a deciding factor, which is why that old Athlon XP would still work great. If we're thinking of doing any sort of post processing, then I agree, a multicore CPU and a good mulitthreading encoding/editing application is needed.

Jedi940, it really depends on how you want it done. Either capture live via hardware card, or forgo the capture card entirely, make sure the mobo you choose has firewire inputs (or just buy a firewire pci card), and load the captured video onto the computer's hard drive after each service, then use an encoding program to make the video DVD compatible. Choice is your's to make.
April 16, 2008 4:08:55 AM

Please keep us updated because I'm seriously considering doing something similar with my congregation. I will actually donate some of my hardware that's just sitting around doing nothing so for me it's more likely to be the hardware capture card in a slower machine that will stream a webcam feed with high quality audio using VLC. My project won't happen for a few months but it'll try and make time for it.
Thanks for the inspiration.
April 16, 2008 4:41:02 AM

I like to help others to help others. I just sent a lot of old hardware parts to an animal shelter in N.Y. Some of it was exactly what they needed and some of it was to help trade for other hardware items they needed but didnt have the money allocated for.

Tbh, under those circumstances I have a bad habbit of giving more than I can give at times but its worth it.

Please do keep us informed. Once you get the setup in place let us know what you ended up with and how it works. Consider it payment for our advice. Its icing on the cake for us guys...
April 16, 2008 4:50:30 PM

Will do. As I said, we are a ways off from streaming to the internet. The immediate use will be capturing services and burning them to DVD's for the shut-ins that we minister to. We need to evaluate if taking the time and money to stream our services to the net would be worth our while. Most people that want to be in church will be there in person and not watching on the net. The biggest benefit I see for now is during the winter when some people stay home due to the weather. Those people might use the feature. Once I get the computer up and running I will have a meeting with the A/V department and set down a plan for the future.

On a side note, no one that I know of knows how to program web pages. At the moment I am learning php and given the frequent references to html, will probably start learning that too. So as far as decent web page goes, we are no where close to that. After I get a decent web page designed, I plan to learn VB.net to further enhance it.

If you have any other questions or ideas I am open to them.
April 16, 2008 11:22:18 PM

Tom's Hardware is doing a $500 build as we speak. It's actually benchmarking right next to where I'm sitting now. I suspect it might be a nice starting point. or comparison to your build, although our build is a bit on the overclock heavy side.

Just apply the modifications that the other users have suggested, and you should be able to make budget, while still having enough left over for some supermarket vending machine stickers to decorate with.
April 17, 2008 5:41:13 AM

I just looked at that $500 build and it looks great although for a gaming rig my personal preference would have been the 9600GT over the 8800GS and to get it under $500, cheap on the case and use a ~400w FSP group PSU.
I do like the idea of overclocking a c2d just because of how much room they have thermally to make it a stable solution. Years ago overclocking was ALWAYS loud, now air cooling can keep these processors cool AND quiet :) 
Englandr, I work at a small Veterinary Animal Hospital so from all of us in the pet industry, thanks for the donation.
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