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New build or add to what I've got

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March 10, 2010 7:17:28 PM

Considering budget desktop duo or quad. I've seen some Gigabyte and Asus $399 refurbs that seemed like a lot of computer for not much $ but don't know any possible negatives about them.

I've been off the internet for 2 years and haven't kept track of all the tech. progress.

My curent board is a MachSpeed V600 DAP.

I have a MachSpeed MS945G-GLV that's never been used but have no parts for it except power supply, HDs and DVD burners and since I would have to add everything I was wondering if this board is worth the trouble to make a build out of it. Memory is DDR2 and the slots only take 1GB DIMMS and the fastest RAM supported is 667 so my memory purchase will be thrown away on this board. Also it seems MachSpeed is trying to get out of the motherboard business and the few reviews I could find don't speak well of the board.

I'm also wondering if 667 memory (fastest supported) will limit the FSB to 667 even though MachSpeed claims the motherboard's FSB is 1033.

I also have a Soyo SY-P4I865PE Plus Dragon 2 v1.0, also new and can use my AGP video card and RAM from my current board plus I like the extra PCI slots and the P4 processor will cost less than $50.

My major concern is whether these boards are going to give me any unforeseen problems and my second concern is whether I'll regret my penny pinching ways because 400 FSB seems a far cry from 1033-1600. The Gigabyte and Asus computers I saw for $399 really made me consider that I'd be getting so much more for only $400 though the upgrade possibilities are limited.

If a new board or computer is recommended, I'm not a gamer but heavily multitask and want the fastest FSB that I can get for the lowest price (and obviously a dual or quad CPU). Because SATA3 and USB3 are or will be coming out soon, that's another consideration although I tend to wait for prices to drop and never buy anything when it first comes out to avoid the extra $.

At the point where I do spend money for a new setup, there are people to whom I can give my old system.

I know most would recommend that I start from scratch but if I can make do with one of the boards I've got and spend just a little money, upgrading later will just be sweeter because of the improvements that will then be available. That's why I'm thinking I might be happiest with some budget recommendations to get the most out of what I have (used CPU etc.). I don't have a problem with delayed gratification (anyone married understands that ;) ).




More about : build add

a b B Homebuilt system
March 11, 2010 4:37:43 AM

Hmm the majority of my clients are actually normal joes moving out of their single cored socket 775/478/939..or even 754! If the objective to attain an el cheapo 'beachhead' into current tech/DDR3 platforms with an upgrade path this simple bundle makes it possible for them ^^

Mostly they just reuse ODD/HDD, yada yada and even if they have old school AGP cards they could rely on that integrated video HD4200 till they attain more $$
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 11, 2010 6:35:01 AM

That'd even be fine with most regular people who don't intend to game at all. (as in prolly wouldn't add in more graphics later)

Though with hard drives that old the system would seem much slower than it could be.

@Mannaman

If you have other people you could/need to give computers too I'd go with a new build prolly using batuchka's parts then finish out the other comp and give that too.
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March 11, 2010 8:36:38 AM

Thanks guys. I've never heard anything good about Biostar but that combo price with that good of a FSB looks really nice and with onboard video, even nicer.

I couldn't find the combo on Newegg. Got a link?
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 11, 2010 1:38:29 PM

You probably also need a new PSU. The one you have is likely so old that A) it will have only a 20-pin mobo power connector; B) [some of] its capacitors may have given up the ghost, meaning very poorly filtered output at best; C) it will be an ancient, inefficient design.
Consistent with Batuchka's simplistic approach ("Here, get this"), I will recommend an Antec Earthwatts PSU. Get the 380W model unless you anticipate running an extremely powerful graphics card (or more than one of them), otherwise get the 500W model for any single card. The 380W model is just $45.
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 11, 2010 3:47:48 PM

Mannaman said:
Thanks guys. I've never heard anything good about Biostar but that combo price with that good of a FSB looks really nice and with onboard video, even nicer.

I couldn't find the combo on Newegg. Got a link?


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

2. This specific model setting XtremeSystems forums alight with ease of unlocking and yes that X3 425 may unlock to an X4 Propus...or an X4 Deneb if u adventurous enuff to try hehe
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=24...
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March 12, 2010 3:22:56 AM

It looked like they unlocked a core... suggesting that some chips, such as the one recommended above, might have a core available to unlock.

It's a different chip though and I just happened on that thread. I was hoping someone might know about it and give me some more info.
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March 12, 2010 4:18:20 AM

Onus said:
You probably also need a new PSU. The one you have is likely so old that A) it will have only a 20-pin mobo power connector; B) [some of] its capacitors may have given up the ghost, meaning very poorly filtered output at best; C) it will be an ancient, inefficient design.
Consistent with Batuchka's simplistic approach ("Here, get this"), I will recommend an Antec Earthwatts PSU. Get the 380W model unless you anticipate running an extremely powerful graphics card (or more than one of them), otherwise get the 500W model for any single card. The 380W model is just $45.



I have a private branded Vantec Stealth 520 watt power supply that's about four or five years old. I suppose I should check it to see how it's holding up. I actually have three or four other power supplies (at least two unused) and about four or five other older computers that I should take the time to make sure they're ready to use and sell or give them away. I haven't even thought about the pin connections though I know on one of my power supplies, I has a 20 pin and a 24 pin connection (as I recall -- I remember when I bought it that it was for older or newer motherboards).
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a b B Homebuilt system
March 12, 2010 6:07:48 AM

Yeah, he managed to unlock a core. Sometimes, very rarely, they need more units with a lower price tag so they just turn off a core or whatever and sell it as less. Sometimes you can wake those up. It's a total crapshoot and don't go into it thinking you'll end up with one of the lucky ones.
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March 13, 2010 6:53:22 AM

Gotcha. Thanks for the info.
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March 23, 2010 5:48:20 AM

Well, guys, thanks again for the input.

What I wasn't aware of when I first started the thread was that the 775 Machspeed MB I have takes a dual core P4 and I found a local dealer with a used 3gb CPU for $39 and two one gb DIMMS for $19 apiece. That seems the best route for me until SATA 3 and USB 3 get established at a good speed with inexpensive hardware.

The plan is to go tomorrow and get the parts and start the build and that will probably serve me well until I'm feeling the need for a USB 3 Flash or HD.

In the past it seems that a significant increase in speed had about a six month appreciation period. When I get dissatisfied I'll probably sell it to my ex-wife who's still using a 1.4ghz Athlon XP on a 30gb HD.

So, it seems I'm making a very good interim upgrade since this MB is hosed. Windows won't boot if I try to connect my 750 gb HD and it works on a friend's computer and if the temp goes above 114 F or I put too much demand on Windows resources, I get a blue screen.

If anyone has any last minute words, please speak up.

Thanks again.



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a b B Homebuilt system
March 23, 2010 6:38:39 AM

It's not like current AM3 based motherboards with those two things are expensive, nor will that end really improve all that much within that kind of timeframe.

The other thing to keep in mind is that a pentium 4 at 3 gigahertz would probably be similar to one athlon II core at 1.5-1.8 gigahertz. (which is a guesstimate, it could be worse for the P4) Then the fact that there are 3 instead of two and what you're talking about gets stamped pretty good.

I suppose that using what you have is not a terrible idea though. I noticed that you said that motherboard has never been used. It is a possibility that it has something wrong with it since it has not been "tested".
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April 3, 2010 2:26:37 PM

"Then the fact that there are 3 instead of two and what you're talking about gets stamped pretty good."

I'm not sure what that means if you'd care to elaborate. Thanks

I keep coming back to this thread because Tom's keeps asking me to choose a "best answer" and I feel this query doesn't really have a best answer, just several different pieces of advice.

BTW, my computer, which got hit with some malware (after my internet absence, I didn't realize how aggresive the ******** were and wasn't quick to get adequate protection on my computer) and my c:\ drive is now in a foreign language and I haven't found out how to fix that. I've tried to copy the steps to set it up in English, but to no avail yet. I thought I set it to "English" yet on reboot, everything (and I do mean everything) is still unreadable (and stating it's a foreign language is a supposition).

It seems that part of the malware hit was a reconfiguration in my Bios to engage caching and shadowing which appear to have caused the reboots rather than my damaged MB. Because it was physically damaged in shipping, I supposed there was a gradual degradation that was causing the increased frequency of rebooting.

I mentioned all that to say that I'm not in as big a hurry now that my Bios is configured properly and the reboots are not as frequent. However, the prospect of a FSB over 1000mhz and a dual core CPU for only about $100 has my mouth watering and I am planning to follow through on my plans soon. My only consideration now is if I can find a really solid full featured socket 775 MB (RAID would be a nice plus) for peanuts and avoid using this MachSpeed at all since I can't find any recommendations for it.

I'd even be willing to take a used board that someone has quit using because they upgraded if anyone knows of such.

Since I have a controller card (lots of IDE drives) and an Audigy card, two PCI slots would already be filled and that's probably the biggest factor in not having already proceeded. It's a real negative to me to think of having NO PCI slots available in a new MB.
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a b B Homebuilt system
April 4, 2010 8:50:15 PM

There are generally still at least one pci slot if not two (usually on full ATX boards, mine's a microATX and only has one.. I think)

What I was talking about in that thing you quoted was me comparing the speed of each actual core between that pentium 4 dual core and an athlon II triple core. Then there's the fact that the athlon II x3 even has an extra core and there is no contest. That AMD processor would be way faster. So would an athlon II x2.
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April 4, 2010 9:25:52 PM

Well, I was encouraged once again, since I'll probably have the computer for five years, to get everything I want, so I'll probably wait a few more months for prices on SSD to come down a bit and more USB3 and SATA3 connections to be available, but in the meantime, I'll fix up the MachSpeed and hope for the best. I'll enjoy the increase in CPU power and FSB and memory speed for the months that I'll be using it.

Who knows, by the time I buy my "dream board" the six core might be out. I wonder if I would ever utilize such a thing.
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June 22, 2010 11:12:34 AM

Well, to kind of finish out this thread, I used the Machspeed MB and got a used e4700 from a local computer place for $50 and he gave me the heatsink and fan and three gigs of memory. He actually gave me four single DIMMS and two (2gb) DIMMS but all were bad except the three single gb DIMMS. Also bought two 1TB Hitachis for $68 each (minus a $30 coupon), so final cost was $53 each on them. One of them, after partitioning and trying to install Win7, went back for replacement after showing only 31MB of space with Hitachi's software. (What's with all these bad drives?)

Installed Win7 and added an NVIDEA 8400 512MB video card that cost $15 AR at Fry's and right now I'm overclocked to 3061 mhz and am very happy with the performance for the price paid!

So, total cost was under $200.

When I get ready to spend more money, I'll sell this to the ex-wife and have a good start on the new computer.

Thanks to all for the input and hope you're rejoicing with me.
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June 22, 2010 11:14:07 AM

OOPS... NVIDIA*
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!