A friend heard I was building a couple of new PCs, and wanted in. His current PC was built in 2001. He really needs an upgrade, it has to be said. He wants a machine for just desktop processing and the like - no gaming. Doubt he'll want it for video either, maybe music. He has a 22" LCD monitor already (powered by the 2001 GeForce GTS in his current machine )
I was thinking of putting together, then, a system with onboard VGA and sound. Currently I am looking at this, but this low end type of system is way out of my knowledge range...
Asus P5KPL-VM (G31 mobo with onboard sound and graphics)
Intel C2D E2180
4GB DDR2 667 (am I being silly? will 2GB keep him happy?)
He also has a fairly new DVD burner and HDD, both IDE. Can i string both of those on the same ribbon to the boards single IDE port?
You have the good basics for his system and yes you can string the IDE HD and burner together. That said he'd be better off getting a prebuilt system for his needs. By the time you add in the operating system, case and power supply, RAM. It sure doesn't sound like he'd be overclocking it.
One of these reconditioned systems would be fine and run under $350 or under $500 for the Q6600 one. http://www.recoupit.com/Shop/Control/fp/scat/142653/SFV...
I should add - he has specified that 'money is no object', what matter to him are value, speed and reliability for desktop work (word processing, internet etc).
The best bang for the buck would be an e7200, gigabyte ep35-ds3l, 2x2gb ddr2-800 cl4 ram, and a cheap video card like the hd 3450. This can easily oc to 3.8Ghz with descent air cooling. And with the hd3450, he can use it as an htpc too.
This is all vastly more powerful then your friend could every need. My girlfriend runs a 1.6ghz centrino processor, with 1gb of RAM . Her XP system is very fast, and she even runs the sims on there well. Your friend says money is no object, but if you were a good friend you wouldn't make him spend more then he has to.
Get him 2 gigs of RAM, a fifty or sixty dollar AMD dual core cpu, a cheap motherboard with onboard graphics, and a cheap but sturdy case. The 480 watt antec earth power supply should do the trick. Shouldn't cost much more then three hundred at newegg if you pair up the right combo deals.
This is the second time in as many days when I've had to say "sad, but true" as I agreed with someone (in this case dirtmountain) that a pre-built PC makes sense in this case.
You could start there, then add a $20-$40 discrete video card if desired (I would).
On the other hand, if you can interest your friend in something more than just "desktop processing," you might have yourself a valid reason to build.