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First Time Builder Budget 700-850

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February 10, 2010 1:31:24 PM

So I am in the process of trying to decide whether or not to build or buy. The computer I have looked at purchasing is this.

HP Pavilion p6330y Desktop with 20" Widescreen LCD Monitor

My current needs for this computer are:
-Storage for my huge collection of music (looking for a Terabyte Drive)
-Photo editing and graphic design (Will be using the latest edition of Photoshop)
-Some video editing, I have a Kodak HD pocket cam
-Web design using Dreamweaver
-General PC use (Office Programs, Internet, Email)
-I would like the capability if in the future I would like to game I can (friends trying to talk me into some WOW)

Items I would like:
-Media Card Reader
-Wifi card
-20" or greater Screen


System I have gathered so far from some research.

AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor Model ADX620WFGIBOX - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS M4A785-M AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HITACHI Deskstar HD31000 IDK/7K (0S00163) 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

CORSAIR XMS3 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX4GX3M2A1600C8 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAMSUNG DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S223L LightScribe Support - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

V13-1138 :: Vantec UGT-CR905 58-in-1 Internal Card Reader (1.5 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

N100-1669 :: Netgear WPN311 PCI Wireless Adapter - 108Mbps, 802.11g, with RangeMax Technology (Recertified) (0.9 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Antec EarthWatts Green EA-430D Green 430W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS 12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power ... - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

A406-1094 :: NZXT M59-001BK M59 Gaming Mid Tower Case - ATX, mATX, Baby AT, Black (17.2 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

L23-7830 :: Logitech Deluxe 250 Desktop Keyboard And Mouse Combo - Optical, PS/2, Black (2.55 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

SCEPTRE X226W-1920 Black 21.5" 5ms Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

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

Total of these parts= 866.69

Another suggestion I received substituted the cpu, motherboard, and powersupply.

AMD Phenom II X4 810 Deneb 2.6GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor Model HDX810WFGIBOX - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS M4A78LT-M LE AM3 AMD 780L Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

D15-1201 :: DiabloTek PHD450 450-Watt Power Supply - ATX, SATA Ready, PCIe Ready, 20+4 Pin (1.42 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Total with these substitutions = 836.69

I also already have Z5500 Logitech Speakers (use to be hooked up to my Xbox 360)

I plan on trying to purchase this all in the next week.

Thanks you all ahead of time.


Best solution

February 10, 2010 1:41:28 PM
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Your first build looks decent, except your motherboard and RAM are not compatible. That motherboard takes DDR2 RAM. I would get this combo:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... $176.98 (AMD Athlon II X4 630 + Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H combo)

Here's some faster CAS 7 RAM that's slightly cheaper:

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7D-4GBRM - Retail $114.99
February 10, 2010 1:47:28 PM

Don't use that second PSU. It's definitely not a quality unit, and poor PSUs make good PCs into bricks very quickly.

Besides shortstuff's changes, I've got a couple.

HDD: Trade that Hitachi for a Samsung Spinpoint F3. The 1 TB drive has disappeared from Newegg, but the 500 GB is available. If you absolutely only want 1 drive, get the Seagate 7200.12 1 TB.

Optical: Check around to find the cheapest SATA DVD burner. You should save a few bucks...
Related resources
February 10, 2010 2:08:38 PM

I will accept the changes Shortstuff has recommended for the first list.

MadAdmiral I would like just one HDD unless you have benefits to having 2 smaller HDD's. I also read quite a few bad reviews on the newer Seagate drives (problems with clicking and dieing). The optical drive I selected was the cheapest drive I could find with Lightscribe which I do like to have as an option.
February 10, 2010 2:18:18 PM

I am also thinking about changing the monitor to this:

ASUS VH226H Black 21.5" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen 16:9 Full HD 1080P LCD Monitor 300 cd/m2 1000:1 (ASCR 12000 : 1) Built in Speakers - Retail

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It has better reviews, HDMI Input, and it is only $10 more after the rebate.
February 10, 2010 2:21:40 PM

That would be a nice monitor upgrade.
February 10, 2010 2:25:28 PM

Hitachi isn't a well known HDD maker. If you're worried about quality, I certainly wouldn't have gone with that. I'd have choosen a Western Digital Caviar Black. Also, are you sure you're not thinking of the older Seagate drives? The new ones are good from what I've heard and read.

As for 2 HDDs vs. 1, I kind of like the dual drives. It allows easy backup and a way to separate data. It will also be slightly faster than 1 large drive (not much). If you don't have an external, definitely get the two separate drives.

You could also check ZipZoomFly, Amazon and TigerDirect to see if they have the F3 1 TB. They're just not on Newegg.
February 10, 2010 2:38:25 PM

MadAdmiral said:
Hitachi isn't a well known HDD maker. If you're worried about quality, I certainly wouldn't have gone with that. I'd have choosen a Western Digital Caviar Black. Also, are you sure you're not thinking of the older Seagate drives? The new ones are good from what I've heard and read.

As for 2 HDDs vs. 1, I kind of like the dual drives. It allows easy backup and a way to separate data. It will also be slightly faster than 1 large drive (not much). If you don't have an external, definitely get the two separate drives.

You could also check ZipZoomFly, Amazon and TigerDirect to see if they have the F3 1 TB. They're just not on Newegg.


I just was reading the reviews of the particular Seagate you reccomended and there were quite a few with issues of clicking and dieing.

I was not able to find the F3 anywhere else. Is there known problems with the Hitachi's? I was just going by reviews on newegg.
February 10, 2010 2:41:42 PM

Most Newegg reviews aren't reliable. I certainly don't listen or trust them. The typical Newegg reviewer is no better than an untrained monkey when it comes to technical knowledge...

I don't know specific problems with Hitachi's, but it is NEVER mentioned in recommendations. The order of performance typically goes Spinpoint F3, Seagate 7200.12, WD Caviar Black.
February 10, 2010 2:47:40 PM

Stupid link wont work...lol But there are still 1TB Spinpoints out there just not on the Egg.
February 10, 2010 2:58:30 PM

I found a few places that have the F3 but have never heard of them before. ExcaliberPc.com? Axiontech.com?

Or would I be better going with Western Digital Black Caviar from Tiger Direct.

I just am a little questionable about the Seagate when the first 5 or so reviews say that the 1st HDD they received was DOA.
February 10, 2010 3:03:39 PM

The WD is the best third option. I'd get it before I'd even consider the Hitachi

@builder: First CPU doesn't have a cooler. Second one is just out of budget. PSU is not a quality choice. GPU is not for this build, as it's not a gaming PC. And it's not that good of choice in general.
February 10, 2010 3:06:05 PM

"I would like the capability if in the future I would like to game I can (friends trying to talk me into some WOW)"
February 10, 2010 3:11:22 PM

WoW certainly won't need that GPU. Stick in the HD 5770 for $75 less.

An aftermarket cooler would be more expensive than just getting the CPU with a cooler. With the extra amount, OP could get a more powerful CPU as well.

Yes, that PSU is bad. It's huge for the OP's purposes and Thermaltake isn't quality. I don't care what the Newegg reviews say.
February 10, 2010 3:14:41 PM

Builderbobftw - You're kind of missing the point of this build. The OP is already at the top of his budget. Your suggested parts blow the budget out of the water.

You're right, the PSU is not terrible, but it's not a good choice either. There are a lot better options out there for the money. Not that they have anything to do with this build. The very highest PSU the OP would ever need for this build even if he did add a GPU would be about 550W.
February 10, 2010 3:20:15 PM

I am just curious as to what OP means?

Also I like the Western Digital now because it does have a 5 year warranty rather than a 3 year.

Is there any other accessories you suggest since this is my very first build?
February 10, 2010 3:21:54 PM

OP = original poster

That's you!
February 10, 2010 3:23:16 PM

Original Poster.

Assuming you have nothing, you'll need a small screwdriver. Other than that, nothing. Some people like to use anti-static wristbands, but I think they're completely unnecessary and not worth the few bucks they cost.
February 10, 2010 3:28:52 PM

MadAdmiral said:
WoW certainly won't need that GPU. Stick in the HD 5770 for $75 less.

An aftermarket cooler would be more expensive than just getting the CPU with a cooler. With the extra amount, OP could get a more powerful CPU as well.

Yes, that PSU is bad. It's huge for the OP's purposes and Thermaltake isn't quality. I don't care what the Newegg reviews say.


Well, then he's even better off getting a 4850 for 125$ less.
February 10, 2010 3:35:17 PM

I have read some about an extender cable if your PSU is on bottom should I buy one of these and if so recommendations as to where to get it.
February 10, 2010 3:40:25 PM

@builder: Still missing the point...

You won't need an extender. The cables are plenty long as long as it's not a full-tower case.
February 10, 2010 3:43:47 PM

MadAdmiral said:
@builder: Still missing the point...

You won't need an extender. The cables are plenty long as long as it's not a full-tower case.


How am i missing the point? You should i was over budget. I recomended a GPU that wasn't.
February 10, 2010 3:47:44 PM

The budget is $850. The OP's build is already at $870. $870 + 125 = $995. Which is not less than $850. That's not a difference we can cut without doing something drastic.
February 10, 2010 3:51:11 PM

MadAdmiral said:
The budget is $850. The OP's build is already at $870. $870 + 125 = $995. Which is not less than $850. That's not a difference we can cut without doing something drastic.


Well, he could buy used parts. Or he could pay nore. Also, the 1gb 4850 is 100$, not 125$.
February 10, 2010 3:51:44 PM

I think my final question will be how will the performance of this PC be? Will it be better than the one I found at Best Buy? Or would I just be better purchasing that HP from Best Buy?
February 10, 2010 3:53:52 PM

It will be better than the ones you buy from a pre-built dealer. It is much higher quality, and much better performance for the price. You will also have the ability to easily upgrade everything, as pre-builts typically use proprietary parts that are near impossible to replace/upgrade.

@builder: Still over budget. And buying used is not usually a good idea. It's just asking to get burned by a bad part.
February 11, 2010 2:53:10 PM

Ok here is my final list for my computer. I went over a little bit on budget but that usually happens.

AMD Athlon II X4 630 Propus 2.8GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GIGABYTE GA-MA785GMT-UD2H AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

TSD-1000WD :: Western Digital WD1001FALS Caviar Black Hard Drive - 1TB, 7200 RPM, 32MB, SATA-300
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL7D-4GBRM - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SAMSUNG DVD Burner Black SATA Model SH-S223L LightScribe Support - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

V13-1138 :: Vantec UGT-CR905 58-in-1 Internal Card Reader (1.5 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

N100-1669 :: Netgear WPN311 PCI Wireless Adapter - 108Mbps, 802.11g, with RangeMax Technology (Recertified) (0.9 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Antec EarthWatts Green EA-430D Green 430W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS 12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power ... - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

A406-1094 :: NZXT M59-001BK M59 Gaming Mid Tower Case - ATX, mATX, Baby AT, Black (17.2 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

L23-0041 :: Logitech MK300 Wireless Desktop Keyboard and Mouse - USB, One Touch Access, Programmable F-Keys, Quiet Keys (4 lbs)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

ASUS VH226H Black 21.5" 2ms(GTG) HDMI Widescreen LCD Monitor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

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

Total of these parts= 871.02 after rebates

Is there any other improvements you would make? Also I just had a question after looking through the parts intensively over night last night. The memory that was reccomended in the description it says this is for Intel processors however I read that in the comments that you can make it compatible for AMD is this hard to do? I saw on someone elses build a G Skill Rip Jaw Memory that is similar and it stated that it will work with AMD which would be better? Here is the link for the other memory

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL7D-4GBRH - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



February 11, 2010 2:58:58 PM

The recommendation doesn't matter at all. It's all marketing. They're the same price, so it doesn't really matter.

It all looks good.
February 11, 2010 3:25:39 PM

coldsleep said:
Is there a reason you're going with a WD 1 TB drive rather than a Seagate 7200.12? Tiger Direct link - $5 cheaper at tigerdirect, free shipping at newegg.


I had read quite a few reviews where the Seagate was DOA and the WD has a longer warranty.
February 18, 2010 1:42:01 AM

Best answer selected by bbqdude.
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