Help me trim some dollars off this Micro ATX budget build

I would like feed back on a budget build I am making for a friend. This is going to be a basic non-gaming family computer that is mainly going to be used for websurfing, email, and homework for the kids. No over-clocking will be done. They insist on having BOTH a DVD ROM and also a burner.

I want to know if anyone in the forum sees any room for improvement either cost or quality wise?
My goal is to trim some dollars off this build with out sacrificing quality components.

Your input is greatly appreciated.

IN WIN IW-V564T2.AQ350BL case $69.99

G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR2 800 $39.99

ASUS M3A78-EM Micro ATX Motherboard $79.99

AMD Athlon 64 X2 5400+ $77.00

Hard Drive
Western Digital 500GB SATA Hard Drive $69.99

Optical Drives
ASUS Black SATA DVD-ROM Drive $22.99

ASUS 20X DVD±R DVD Burner $24.99

Card Reader
Rosewill USB 2.0 Card Reader $14.49

Grand Total: $399.43
9 answers Last reply
More about help trim dollars micro budget build
  1. Go with a Dell.
    Sorry man but you really cant beat what they offer for lower end prices.
    They have the OS, the warranty and does all that for a stupid low price which would probably include a monitor.

  2. Well with OS you are @ $499 and you didnt figure in shipping so add 30-40 more dollars.


    Way better deal then you can offer.

    or for the price you can offer they can get a quad core:
  3. For that system you really don't need DDR2 800 RAM. For what they are going to be using it for you can just use DDR2 667 RAM such as this kit from crucial

    That CPU is a bit much for something that is just going to be surfing the Web and doing homework so you can shave a few dollars there by going with a 5000+. Heck if that's all they are gonna be using it for then you could even go with the AMD Athlon LE-1660 @ 2.8 for only 48.99. As for the case I don't exactly see In Win as a quality supplier and for that price you can get something better. Like this cooler master which is like $5 more with shipping

    Or you could go with something from Raidmax to shave some dollars. As for the motherboard you can shave off a few dollars by going with this board from ASRock, which is basically the budget arm of ASUS

    Just don't go with an ECS or PC Chips board to save money :D . Really though I agree with Gundamn1, if it's just for homework and the web just get a Dell, or go with what Roadrunner suggests. You could also go down to best buy, Get whatever HP or Compaq is on sale, upgrade the RAM, and you're good to go.
  4. roadrunner197069 said:
    Well with OS you are @ $499 and you didnt figure in shipping so add 30-40 more dollars.
    1. They already have an OS they can use

    2. I actually did add in the shipping. Every single item including the PC case has free shipping. I forgot to mention that in my original posts.

    The links I am seeing on here are from refurb systems with 90 day warranties.

    I went to and spec'd out a comparable new computer. It came out to $575. 500GB hard Drive, 2 Gigs of memory, and a E2180 processor which is slower than the 64x2 5400. And had Intel intergrated graphics. And this is with out a monitor.

    If you are comparing new computer vs new computer I think it would be hard to beat a homebuilt price. Unless they have a major rebate or something but then you got to hope the company honors the rebate.

    I could get a refurb homebuilt for less than the gateways.
  5. Megaman,

    Thank you for the suggestions for the ram, mobo and case. Extremely helpful.
    Greatly appreciated. Exactly what I was looking for.

    Also I did not know that ASRock was owned by ASUS
  6. For what you want to do with that machine, you might be surprised at how fast the Celeron 430 is:

    $39 < $77 -- keep it and upgrade later if you need more speed; just be sure you start with a good LGA775 motherboard. A friend started with this Celeron because he needed to flash the latest BIOS on his ASUS motherboard: he was quite surprised at how fast it was. He did upgrade to an E8400 later.

  7. Well a refurb warranty is better then your 0 warranty.

    Pirated Windows is illegal, just so you know!

    If you spec on Dell you will pay a little more. Go to Walmart and get one off the shelf with your specs and cheaper, with a legal version of Vista.
  8. Roadrunner: If I said something in a previous post that offended you or put you on the spot I apologize.

    My original intent of this post was not to get in to an debate on what is better
    'store bought vs. homebuilt.'

    Here is my view point:

    1.) Per newegg:

    The case and PSU has a 1 year warranty
    The hard drive has a 3 year warranty
    The optical drives have a 1 year warranty
    The Processor has a 3 year warranty
    ASUS mobo has a 3 year warranty

    I have spare parts too.

    2.) They have their own legal copy of windows. I told them up front that it may or may not activate on this new build. If it does not then an OEM version should cost about $84 or so and they are prepared for that.

    PC building is just a fun hobby for me as it is for many on this forum as it probably is for yourself. Building computers once or twice a year keeps me fresh updated on technology. These are friends and I am sure they rather call and speak with me than some call center in a foreign country on the other side of the earth with a person who has a difficult foreign accent to interpret.

    I am doing this as a favor for some friends. I am just trying to take the approach on how to reduce costs on this build with out reducing quality.

    I appreciate everyone's input on store bought units, however we have already decided not to go that route.
  9. Looks good then.
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