Need feedback on cpu, mobo, ram for budget build

I need to put together a budget build for my daughter. The system will be used for general surfing and some photo/video editing work for school so it doesn’t need much horsepower. However, I would like to leave open the possibility of upgrading the CPU down the road as my daughter’s needs are likely to change.

I would like to get some feedback on my CPU, motherboard and RAM choices. In particular, I’m wondering if I should pay a little more to get an Athlon x4 620 or a Phenom II x3 720.

Purchase Date By end of January.
Budget: Roughly $500 excluding OS.
System Usage: Surfing, some photo and video editing for high school work. No gaming at the moment.
Parts not Required: GPU, cooler, monitor, keyboard, mouse, OS
Parts: Newegg
Country of Origin: USA
Parts Preferences: Corsair PSU (have used several and like ‘em). Nothing from OCZ (bad experience with them).
Overclocking: Mild
SLI/Crossfire: No
Monitor Resolution: 1680 x 1050

Proposed Build

CPU: AMD Athlon II X3 425 Rana 2.7GHz 3 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W. $76
Motherboard: ASUS M4A77TD AM3 AMD 770 ATX. $77 with rebate and shipping
RAM: GeIL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10660) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model GV34GB1333C7DC, 1.5V, CL7. $100
GPU: HD4350 that I already have. $0
Cooler: Cooler Master Intel Core i5 compatible Hyper TX3. Not the best cooler out there but I have it lying around and want to use it. $0
Case: Antec Two Hundred Black ATX Mid Tower. $40 with rebate and shipping
Hard Disk: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD502HJ 500GB 7200 RPM . $55
PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-400CX 400W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS . $46 with rebate and shipping
Optical: LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 24X DVD-R SATA Black 24X DVD Writer LightScribe. $32
Total Cost: $426
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  1. I think the 720 BE would be better bang for the buck:

    If it's a question of money then spend less on the RAM... the CPU is where you'll get the biggest performance gain. Although, that's a pretty good deal on the RAM.
  2. Thanks Proximon. I was starting to lean that way too. Even though it's a budget build, I always hate skimping too much.

    Newegg had a good deal on the Corsair 450W PSU with the same optical drive I listed so I ordered that instead of the 400W version.
  3. Good, slightly better PSU.
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