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Challenge: How low can you go?

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December 2, 2009 4:29:08 PM

I have a challenge for all of you. My boss approached me and asked if i could build him a computer for his new home office, its not going to be used for intensive tasks, its primarily for storing music, pictures, videos, and for his son to play learning games on. Now i need to give him an estimated price soon, so i was hoping you guys could help me whip together a good cheap rig for him. Rebates and combos dont count in this game, combos will likely change before i start getting parts, and rebates take too long to come in so dont factor those in. I want to see how cheaply this can be done, but using good quality components, no raidmax PSUs or ECS motherboards. Im also going to need some suggestions for good cheap cases, probably going to be microATX mid towers for size and price reasons, but it needs to be a good, solid, and quiet case.


APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Early Spring BUDGET RANGE: How low can we go?

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Storing music, pictures, home videos, internet browsing, and very low level games

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, and OS

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: US

PARTS PREFERENCES: Good quality, minimal price

OVERCLOCKING: No SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No

MONITOR RESOLUTION: unsure, will not be used for gaming above a 3 year old's level

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December 2, 2009 8:47:48 PM

Well because its going to have to store photos and music i was thinking atleast a 500GB drive, probably an F3. But judging by your two builds it looks like $400 + windows is a pretty safe estimate.
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December 3, 2009 3:04:07 PM

^ I was going to mention something like that. I was shooting for as low as I could get it and still consider it a decent workstation for what the OP mentioned it would be used for, but if you took the cheapest parts from both my and batuchka's builds, you'd come out at just about $270.

If you spent a little extra to install an F3, maybe put it in a nicer case, maybe install another 2GB of RAM, you'd have a much better machine that'd still cost under $400. That's what I'd do, at least.

This was a fun game; I had a good time.
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December 3, 2009 3:26:23 PM

Damn, I am too late. I wanna have fun too. :D 
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December 3, 2009 4:29:21 PM

Who say's you're too late? Build a decent system for under $300 and you'll be winning at this point.
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December 3, 2009 9:23:48 PM
December 3, 2009 9:28:35 PM

I like it. It's a very solid inexpensive build!
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December 3, 2009 9:31:43 PM

Thanks shortstuff, i will keep that list saved for the next time someone asks for a basic cheapo build on here, will save a ton of time.
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December 3, 2009 9:38:51 PM

I like it too, except for the ODD's very poor reviews. How about replacing it with this Lite-On? Only $5 more for a much higher rating, 24x maximum write instead of 22x, and LightScribe as an added bonus.
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