Helping my friend build his own system, just some advice would be appreciated. Just for some general information he'll be running xp, so I had him switch out his first choice of graphics card (which had 1g of memory, a waste in most circumstances) to a 512mb model. I also switched the motherboard to ASUS since his other one was from some company I'd never even heard of (he picked it due to a bundle deal)
He already has a monitor and 1TB harddrive so those aren't included in the list.
The things I am curious is about is should i have him get a Radeon 4850 instead of his current card, since it is a tad cheaper and performs only slightly worse (in some circumstances better) in all the benchmarks i've looked at. Also, due to the size of the card a larger case is needed, however I feel that the current case is a bit overkill, but will be helpful for future builds. His Budget is around 500 Dollars.
get the 4850. Right now, ati cut the prices on those cards so you can get a decent 4850 for around 110-130 dollars. The gts 250 (which is by the way the competitor for the 4850) starts at around 140-160 for both the 512mb and 1gb models. In other words, go with the 4850.