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First time build low budget

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December 10, 2009 2:49:03 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Next week BUDGET RANGE: $500 - $550 before rebates

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Internet, burning DVDs, listening to music, Microsoft office

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com

PARTS PREFERENCES: Any

OVERCLOCKING: Maybe SLI OR CROSSFIRE: NO

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1280x1024

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Hey guys i'm trying to put together a computer but don't have a lot of cash i just finished my A+ class and i need a new computer i have an old Pentium 4 e machine system right now and i was going to buy another cheap one from best buy but my professor said i need to build one so heres a list i put together its the best i could come up with for the amount of money if you guys could tell me if i'm going wrong somewhere or suggest something better id really appreciate it anyway thanks for taking the time to read this and heres my list

Sony Optiarc Black SATA DVD/CD Rewritable Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Rosewill R5717-P ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 ST3500641AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MSI 785GM-E51 AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

APEVIA ATX-CW500WP4 500W ATX Power Supply
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

2 Kingston 1GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Desktop Memory Model KVR1333D3/1GR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AMD Phenom II X3 720 2.8GHz 3 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Black Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Arctic Silver MTX-2.5G Matrix Thixotropic Premium Thermal Compound
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MASSCOOL FD08025S1M4 80mm Case Fan
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Grand Total $421.96

More about : time build low budget

December 10, 2009 3:06:43 PM

Ok, you've not mentioned gaming at all, which explains and justifies not having a video card in your build.
That said, the hard drive you listed is a few generations old. Get a 7200.12 drive if you want Seagate, a Western Digital Black (for performance, Black > Blue > Green), or a Samsung Spinpoint F3.
I am not comfortable with the reputation of MSI mobos, but I will quickly admit it's from reports of failures in past years, and they may very well have improved. That one does look like it has solid capacitors in the power circuits. I have bought a few ASRock AMD boards in the last year or so, and not had any problems with them.
The Apevia PSU is not good for its labeled rating. The brand is considered very crappy. Many of their PSUs melt or go boom when load-tested. For your build, an Antec Earthwatts 380D for $50 is a quick and easy answer, but note that it doesn't include a power cord.
The stock cooler that comes with the CPU has thermal paste already applied, so you can omit the thermal compound.
The case you've chosen already has front, rear, and side 120mm fans, so I can't tell why you've added an 80mm fan to this build.
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December 10, 2009 3:12:11 PM

Oh man, never go with Re-certified anything if you're on a budget. What happens when it doesn't work?

Look at the Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB: $55 and a great HDD

You don't need third-party thermal gel unless you're getting an aftermarket heatsink. The stock heatsink will come with thermal compound already applied.

This RAM will run better (lower CAS Latency): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148322


Don't get an Apevia power supply: http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx
300W will be enough power too
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December 10, 2009 3:16:36 PM

Onus said:
I am not comfortable with the reputation of MSI mobos, but I will quickly admit it's from reports of failures in past years, and they may very well have improved. That one does look like it has solid capacitors in the power circuits. I have bought a few ASRock AMD boards in the last year or so, and not had any problems with them.


Just as a note, I put an MSI 790GX-G65 on my parent's computer. Didn't overclock anything (will OC moderately in a few years when it starts to show its age), but it gave me absolutely no issues at all. Wonderful board for the price. I also had an ASRock board on an old machine (5 years or so ago). Ran the PC for about 3 years, then shelved it. Just started it up the other day, booted up just fine with no issues at all.

MSI is the largest manufacturer of mainboards in the world. They are good boards. Gigabyte and Asus are better if you're looking for high-end overclocks, but MSI will be just fine for our man here. Between MSI and ASRock, either would be acceptable.
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Best solution

December 10, 2009 3:32:39 PM

Here's a build that uses all quality components and comes in under budget. I guess you could upgrade the CPU, but that CPU + motherboard combo is nice.

Antec Two Hundred Black ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $39.95

CORSAIR CMPSU-400CX 400W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $49.99 $15.00

AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS M4A785TD-M EVO AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $178.99

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL8D-4GBRM - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $91.99

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $54.99

Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $26.99

Total - $442.90 - $15 MIR

You said you didn't need an OS. What OS are you planning on using? A new build really deserves a modern OS. The above build leaves enough room in the budget to pick up Windows 7.

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $104.99

Edit: Here's a combo for the Phenom II x3 720 + the same Asus 785G motherboard that would raise the price of the system by $20:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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December 10, 2009 3:37:25 PM

Shortstuff's list is all good too. I may get that case myself just for the HDD dock on it.
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December 10, 2009 5:12:34 PM

Good list Shortstuff.

Do you think the AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x is better than the Phenom II x3 for his needs?
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December 10, 2009 5:16:54 PM

I think either CPU would work great for his needs. The Athlon X4 is the way I'd go since more and more applications will become multi-threaded in the near future. The Phenom II X3 certainly isn't a bad choice by any means, though.
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December 11, 2009 10:02:20 AM

Onus said:
Ok, you've not mentioned gaming at all, which explains and justifies not having a video card in your build.
That said, the hard drive you listed is a few generations old. Get a 7200.12 drive if you want Seagate, a Western Digital Black (for performance, Black > Blue > Green), or a Samsung Spinpoint F3.
I am not comfortable with the reputation of MSI mobos, but I will quickly admit it's from reports of failures in past years, and they may very well have improved. That one does look like it has solid capacitors in the power circuits. I have bought a few ASRock AMD boards in the last year or so, and not had any problems with them.
The Apevia PSU is not good for its labeled rating. The brand is considered very crappy. Many of their PSUs melt or go boom when load-tested. For your build, an Antec Earthwatts 380D for $50 is a quick and easy answer, but note that it doesn't include a power cord.
The stock cooler that comes with the CPU has thermal paste already applied, so you can omit the thermal compound.
The case you've chosen already has front, rear, and side 120mm fans, so I can't tell why you've added an 80mm fan to this build.


Hey thanks for the info jtt i think im going to go with shortstuffs list it looks pretty good. I had no idea that the cooler came already attached so that saves me some money, and thanks for the info on the psu company i know to stay away from them now. I added the fan because my professor told me i should always have an extra fan. thanks again for the help
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December 11, 2009 10:06:13 AM

nofun said:
Oh man, never go with Re-certified anything if you're on a budget. What happens when it doesn't work?

Look at the Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB: $55 and a great HDD

You don't need third-party thermal gel unless you're getting an aftermarket heatsink. The stock heatsink will come with thermal compound already applied.

This RAM will run better (lower CAS Latency): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148322


Don't get an Apevia power supply: http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx
300W will be enough power too


Nofun thank you very much for the information and for finding better parts im going to go with shorstuffs list it looks pretty good. So stay away from Re-certified? Im glad you told me i was just looking at the price thanks again i really appreciate it.
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December 11, 2009 10:13:09 AM

shortstuff_mt said:
Here's a build that uses all quality components and comes in under budget. I guess you could upgrade the CPU, but that CPU + motherboard combo is nice.

Antec Two Hundred Black ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $39.95

CORSAIR CMPSU-400CX 400W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $49.99 $15.00

AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS M4A785TD-M EVO AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $178.99

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL8D-4GBRM - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $91.99

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $54.99

Sony Optiarc 24X DVD/CD Rewritable Drive Black SATA Model AD-7240S-0B - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $26.99

Total - $442.90 - $15 MIR

You said you didn't need an OS. What OS are you planning on using? A new build really deserves a modern OS. The above build leaves enough room in the budget to pick up Windows 7.

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $104.99

Edit: Here's a combo for the Phenom II x3 720 + the same Asus 785G motherboard that would raise the price of the system by $20:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...


Hey shortstuff thank you so much for putting that list together im going to use it probably order this weekend. I was going to ask the same thing about the processor that geckojohn asked. I always thought the more expensive something is the better it is why does the triple core cost more? Also my friend was telling me if i get 4GB of RAM i have to use a 64 bit operating system because a 32 bit system can only utilize 2 GB is that true, thanks again for your help i cant wait to get my parts and start my build
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December 11, 2009 7:34:01 PM

A 32bit OS can only see 4GB total of any kind of memory in your system. That includes video memory, and whatever bits and pieces any other devices use. This will usually leave you with 3.2GB to 3.7GB of usable RAM.
Here's a chart comparing the performance of the X4 620 and the X3 720: http://www.anandtech.com/bench/default.aspx?p=106&p2=83
The 720 has an unlocked multiplier and is easier to overclock, but that also may not matter much to you. You won't be able to OC too high on the stock cooler anyway.
They trade wins, so if you're interested, compare the ones that most concern you.
Your professor's advice about the fan is good, but your case already covers that with the ones it includes. Shortstuff's list is good. Yeah, I said that already.
Have fun with your build.

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