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New system build--novice with questions!

Last response: in Systems
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October 27, 2008 4:01:04 AM

Hey guys, I made a post a while ago about wanting to build my own or at least update my current system. I am having off and on component problems, video stuttering, and generally play with low settings. My current specs are as follows:

365W PSU, P4 3.2 gHz CPU, Radeon 9800 XT, stock Dell (sorry) motherboard for the Dimension 8300, 1GB RAM (DDR400?).

Please note that I do not expect a top of the line system, but I DO need to update my system for the time being into something I can update for a foreseeable time frame. My budget is ideally under $300-$350.

GPU + RAM combo: Powercolor Ax3870 512MD3-PH Radeon HD 3870 512 MB, 256-bit GDDR3 and OCZ Platinum Revision 2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800

http://secure.newegg.com/Shopping/AddToCart.aspx?Submit...
http://images10.newegg.com/uploadfilesfornewegg/rebate/...

Combo discount: $128.98 - $60.00 rebates, total cost = $68.98

Motherboard: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... Biostar A770, $69.99 - $10.00 rebate = $59.99

PSU and CPU: Rosewill RX750-D-B 750W ATX12v + AMD Athlon 64 X2 5400+ Brisbane 2.8gHz AM2 65W

Combo deal: http://secure.newegg.com/Shopping/AddToCart.aspx?Submit... $134.99

Total cost estimate: $263.96

Now for my questions: Am I missing anything obvious in compatibility? This is my first PC build.

Do you have any experience with these brands that you can recommend or warn against them?

Would I be better off waiting for Black Friday?

Anything I skimped too much on or anywhere I could save money on? Reasonable upgrades at low cost are appreciated.

<3 any help.
October 27, 2008 5:56:48 AM

Proximon said:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/257075-31-what-parts-...

Looking at CPU benchmarks, I would have to say that it's not much of an upgrade.

Don't buy Rosewill anything, especially PSUs. Well, this might be a safe purchase, as long as you don't need it to work.

You'd have to be smokin' something if you think a AMD 5400+ (5200+ is the one linked in the combo deal) is equal to a p4 3.2 ghz!!! Don't get me started on the whole p4 architechure either!!
On a budget the AMD 5200+ or 5400+ are good buys. I'll have to do some more research before I comment on the rest.
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October 27, 2008 6:21:26 AM

Well, not equal, but it seemed like not a significant improvement. Kinda hard to find the exact two CPUs compared anywhere.

My impression was that the Brisbane would fall almost exactly in the middle between the Pentium and an E8200 Wolfdale.
October 27, 2008 2:16:14 PM

Hm, I thought that the 5200+ would be a fairly significant upgrade for the price. I know that Intel quads significantly outstrip AMD's, but I spend most of my time gaming so was just looking at the duals. Is it the same situation there? And all the Intel motherboards I liked seemed to run a fair bit more. :(  Wish I could've found a cheap one with Crossfire though.

The PSU... there's a 650W Corsair for $49.99 after rebate that got pretty good reviews, no combo deal though. I'll keep looking when I get back from class.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


How do electronics stores, especially online, handle Black Friday? Savings worth waiting for?

October 27, 2008 8:17:59 PM

Some of the Black Friday deals are good, but it's hit and miss, so you'll have to keep up on them to get what you want. I scored on a 2x1 gb Corsair Tracer pack for $40 last year!! They were going for about $80 at that time.
That PSU that you linked is an OCZ PSU, not a Corsair one. There are some really good combo deals on PSU/Case at Newegg.
$85 shipped!
Best deal is the 3rd one from the top. The Antec 300 w/the Antec Neo 550w PSU. That'll handle any single card GPU and most X-fire/SLI combo's too!!

Memory deal!! - $37 - $25 MIR = $12!!! hard to beat that!!
OCZ SLI-Ready 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Retail

There are AMD builds that will cost a bit less, but won't OC like the Intel build. The options that I've listed above will push your budget, but with the 4850 GPU you'll be gaming at a better clip than with the almost dated 3870. The Antec 300/Antec 550w PSU combo will save you $45 over the Cooler Master one. The CM690 case is a good one, but the $30 shipping charge is killing the budget. The total with the above changes will put you at $452 - $65 MIR's = $387!! Now that isn't what your budget was, so if you drop the GPU down to a 4830 you get a $423 - $50 MIR's = $372!!
Anonymous
October 27, 2008 9:57:05 PM

http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/257216-31-gaming-syst...

I would recommend taking a look at this thread for the best possible upgrade for under $300, I would go with the Foxconn motherboard over the ECS though.

I would also take lunyone's advice and get a Antec case over the HEC recommended in the thread(the extra $40 is worth it).
But if you plan on recycling the case you currently possess, then a Antec earthwatts EA500 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... would be a good choice.
October 27, 2008 10:15:24 PM

And for $0.56 more you could get the better Antec 550w PSU. It has 42A on the 12v rails (actually only 1 x 12v rail) and comes with an additional 6 pin PIC-e power connector!
Antec NeoPower 550 550W ATX12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply - Retail

or you could spend $11 more (after $20 MIR) you could get the Corsair 650tx that has 52A on the 12v rail and comes with 2 x 6+2pin PCI-e power connectors (which allows you any single GPU out right now!).
Corsair TX CMPSU-650TX ATX12V & EPS12V Power Supply
Newegg's link for the Corsair 650tx, which has more information than the Buy.com website does.
!