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1st Build - Budget $500

First off, I've never built a computer before, but tired of Dell, etc. So, should I go for it? I do have a few friends I could go to if needed and have had experience in upgrades and general troubleshooting. Intrigued by the challenge too.


APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: soon, but really whenever

BUDGET RANGE: 500 After Rebates (a little flexible)

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: @Home, office, surfing the internet, watching movies, photo editing

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers (Need new OS - win7)

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: newegg.com, but really anywhere else you suggest

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: US

PARTS PREFERENCES: None

OVERCLOCKING: No

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: No

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1920x1080

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: Need HDMI

Thanks!!!
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  1. MadAdmiral - I appreciate you taking the time to spec this out for me.

    I was hoping to come in under $500 with an OS, maybe that is not possible?

    Or any suggestions to get me started with the idea of adding upgrades a few months down the road as cash becomes available?
  2. Best answer
    It's not that feasible. At that point, I'd almost recommend looking at some prebuilts. The OS will cost $100 (or $65 if you're a student). A $400-$435 build would be cutting a lot of corners.

    I'm not saying it isn't possible, but give me a few minutes to look around...

    The first thing I can think of is switching the case/PSU to this combo: Coolermaster Centurion 5 and OCZ ModXStream 500W $60 after rebates.

    EDIT: Here's another cost saver: X3 435 and Gigabyte GA-785GMT-USB3 $140. After that, you'd need to decrease the RAM to a 2x1 GB kit.
  3. Yes. The AM3 socket has a lot of upgrade potential.
  4. Thanks for the quick reply!

    If my math is correct, with the $100 for the OS that would put me right at the $500 mark. Thanks.

    Would the AMD option put me in a better position for future upgrades as budget allows?
  5. Best answer selected by bdok.
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