I think I should begin by saying that I aim to build a PC for my parents to replace their old, el-cheapo Dell. My #1 goal is speed over time. I want build a computer that will still be fast 6 years from now with only a minor upgrade or two (at which point I would upgrade the processor, vid card, fans). I want the OS to load very quickly, and for applications to start with a snap. They only ever use the computer for the internet, so the most processor-intensive situation would involve streaming video and the virus scanner (AVG), maybe even at the same time! I will load it up with Win7 RC and buy it about 9 months from now.
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: hopefully within the next 30 days
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: general internet usage, streaming videos
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: PS2 keyboard, mouse, speakers, DVD player (hopefully), OS (will use Win7 RC until it can be bought)
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Tiger Direct, New Egg, Amazon
Number 1, I think your spending too much on the SSD drive. I mean it's nice, but for 50 bucks, grab a standard sata drive with a large cache, and you should be ok there. For PSU, a cheaper corsair is more than you want to spend, but may consider one of those as the build quality is supposed to be excellent.
With some of the money you save on the SSD drive, grab a 22 inch monitor. I've seen those for 150, I have a 22 inch hanns g monitor myself, and it's awesome. They will probably like that a lot.
For a cheap build, that may be too much case. How about something like this for 25?
Some of the other guys could give you more info, but since they are not gaming or anything like that. If you went that route, check mobo compatibility.
Awesome deal for memory, but at this point, go with at least 4 gb if possible, and a 64 bit OS. Although 2 gb is certainly usable.
Last thing I just saw, dump the ECS mobo. ECS is known as cheap, my personal preference is Gigabyte, or Biostar. I've had very good luck with biostar in the past, but I'm running my first gigabyte board, and so far it's been great.
In regards to the HDs, is it not true that boot-up time, and program load time (IE explorer) are considerably less when done from a SSD as opposed to a platter? From what I have read, this is the case, so I figured I'd get one just big enough to hold an OS for several years...
On SSD I mean you can do what you want, but like me, I'm running vista on my desktop, and within a minute or so of turning it on, it's usually up and running. Load times aren't bad for me. You can always upgrade the HD later on. But for memory and processor, get the fastest you can I think. Keep in mind I'm running an SLI board, with an Athlon x2 5200+ processor.
I have not used this board, but you may consider it.
it's about 48 I think. It also appears to have onboard video/audio. You may want to ask others about this board though, but one review said it's not great with more than a 95 watt processor. The one time I did use an ASROCK board it seemed ok. I think on that board though it will likely want ddr2 1066 memory. Though a lot of guys say that pc 1066 is only overclocked ddr2 800 memory, so you may be able to get away with using that, not sure. I've not gone this far yet. So some other guys may be of more assistance in these areas. You may have to search around on pricewatch for the ddr2 1066 memory if you do go this route, as newegg seems to be limiting a lot of their options there, which stinks as they used to have a lot more great deals.
To the OP, do what you want man, but dump that SSD. Waste of money, it will come down in price eventually, then grab it. For a 500 dollar budget though, spend the money somewhere else, like a good PSU.
You pay 50 bucks, but it's nearly as powerful as the 650 watt PSU I have. That is quality. You get that 400 watt corsair, yeah, it's more than you want to spend, but you'll probably never have to worry about it burning up. The main thing you want to look at on a PSU is not the wattage, look at the amperage one the 12v+ rail.
What's not fun is when a cheap power supply goes out and burns up the mobo. And if you are building this pc, you will end up being tech support.
Edit: Just saw your newest post. That box and PSU is like the minimum I would go with. Another thing to think about, look at least for a midtower case, if you ever want to upgrade the mobo or anything else, you aren't limited to a Micro ATX board and have a little more room to work.
Looks great to me! The only suggestion I can give you is if you feel like you can spend a few more dollars, I would swap out for this CPU and mobo http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
What you have now is good, but a triple core processor will definitely be much better than a dual especially if you are needing this PC to last a long time.
Edit: Be sure to check for combos on all your hardware. You can get a free SATA cable with the 640GB drive. You can also get a set of DDR2 1066 RAM. The integrated RAM controller on the AMD CPU's benefit from the extra bandwidth of DDR2 1066 RAM.
I agree on the combo, for the little extra, you'd get a better chip, the thing is, in a few years if you want to get a better chip you may have a harder time finding it, or have to pay more, However, I think what you have would make a good build, and for 500, that should be a nice system.
Only thing I'd change besides the hdd is the memory - from my own experience (and the reviews I've seen) G. Skill has nearly flawless quality control, while OCZ is not quite as consistent. I'm sure I saw a 2x2GB kit of G. Skill for ~$45 on newegg, so it won't change your final cost much.