First system ($300 budget)

I'm building a budget system to replace my (8 year old) p4 3.2ghz gateway desktop.

I bought this mobo (bnib) for $35:
BIOSTAR G41M7 LGA 775 Intel G41 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

I'm trying to find an antec 900 on ebay, its one of the only cases that came up when i typed in gaming case :whistle:
I think I'll be able to get a used one for around $60

probably going to grab a used E6750 core2duo off of ebay for about $70

I may take the nvida ge7600gt out of my old computer and put it into the new one. idk if I can get a better card for pretty cheap? any recommendations?

I don't want to cheap out on the psu... I looked up antec on ebay and there were several different models and I wasn't sure which were reliable / which lower end. Any suggestions? the corsair hx series are too expensive on $200 for a 550w. The tx series goes for about $50..

I checked on the antec psu calculator, and messed around with a few different build options, and I averaged between 500-550w.

I have a few questions...
Do you think the stuff above is a good/reliable?
what hdd configuration should I use? the mobo has 4 sata connectors, (i've never done a raid before...). should I get a raid controller and run 4 hdds in raid 0?

I'm mainly concerned with internet/boot up speed. My dads paying for the setup, and thats all he cares about.
right now my computer has about 150gb used up on a 250gb hdd. should I get a few small hdds for the raid 0 and run programs on it, and get another slower hdd for music/videos?

And for my own needs... I play rts games (warcraft3) online, and wired mouses sort of piss me off. Any suggestions on a good wireless gaming mouse? or are they all trash/too expensive?

Any suggestions on a good keyboard w/ programable keys and a backlight?
I can go a little over the budget w/ the keyboard/mouse...

Thanks for the help!
19 answers Last reply
More about first system budget
  1. I think you can try to contact people in this forum for that specs.
    Some of them are thinking of replacing/upgrading their PC.
    Those PC are somehow a little similar to your specs...
    Perhaps they want to sell the old configuration to you with a reasonable price..
    This will also help them to expand their budget.

    Example :
  2. Quote:
    This is obviously not going to be much of a gaming computer, so why do you need an Antec 900? You can get a brand new Antec 300 for less than $60.

    There's no possible way that system will use 500-550w.

    For $50 ($30 if you live near microcenter or Fry's) you can get a 45nm Wolfdale dual core celeron (E3200/3300) brand new. It's newer and better than a used e6750 and it will overclock like a champ, even on G41.

    Great power supply.

    *** I have a feeling your unaware that the G41 only has 2 dimm slots (may not be a problem) and only 1 IDE slot (most likely a BIG problem).

    I thought IDE was replaced by SATA?
    what are IDE slots used for??
  3. I read the recommended builds sticky and they said not to consider ocz if you were planning on keeping the computer for a while (this build won't be upgraded, and hopefully it'll last another 10 years.)

    and I thought the higher the series # the better for the E#### processors... how exactly does their naming scheme work??

    I live in the US if that makes a difference.
  4. I'm going to try to cancel the mobo.
    Any suggestions on a cheap/reliable mobo? upgrading for the future isn't a concern.

    The only games I play are cs:s (occasionally), warcraft3, and when starcraft2 comes out i'll be playing that (I like RTS games).
    Which is why the macro keys will come in handy.

    So it won't be stressed at all. I have no idea what kinds of cases are out there so suggest me one please :)

    I could go w/ AMD, but I've never had one before, and I know nothing about which generation is which. Just trying to put together something that'll browse the web at lightning speeds, as my current p4 plays wc3 perfectly fine.
  5. alright, thanks :). I didn't buy the mobo, so right now I have nothing.

    can you help with my other questions?
  6. I would recommend a less expensive case. You can get perfectly acceptable cases for $30.

    Your budget is very low. You might try to find used parts for a few things such as the case and DVD drive. I don't want to discourage anyone from building their own computer because that is exactly what I like to do, BUT at that price point you can buy a computer from a mass marketer for less money than you can build one.

    Ten years? Not likely. MAYBE 5 years. I kept my last home computer for 7 years and it was painfully slow at the end of that time. Well it did still work, and I could surf the net with it, but much more and I wanted to throw it out the window.
  7. Quote:
    Are you sure this gateway is upgradeable? I mean are you sure it fit's a standard atx power supply?

    Is your P4 socket 775 with DDR2? If your P4 is DDR you'll need new memory too.

    Huh? I'm not upgrading the p4 gateway computer, I'm building a new computer to replace it. Have you read anything in this thread? :sweat:

    I'm thinking about this:
    mobo: The gigabit mobo has a p45, the msi has a p43. I have no idea what the difference between them are, other than that 1 is $5 more than the other.


    cpu: Not sure which to get, all 3 here are wolfdales, all 3 are 45nm, the price for the last one is the steepest. I think the 3rd link looks like the best bang for the buck, but IDK, because it says pentium duo core not duo 2 core :heink:

    is there a big difference between them? will they all work with the mobo I linked above?
    Any better suggestions?

    Those 3 bring me up to about $200.
    I can get 2x2gb ddr3 ram off of ebay for about $65.

    Is it worth it to get like 4 40gb hdds and run them in raid 0, or will there not be much of an improvement in speed for just Internet surfing? Or would I just be better off getting 1 hdd?
    I believe the gigabite mobo has a raid controller on it.
  8. considering your tight budget, I'd be looking to buy a complete system. get on the forums here on TH and at HardOCP,, and techPowerup. lot's of good people and deals there. It'll most likely be more expensive to piece something together at this price. sell your old parts if you can to recoup cost if you end up stretching your budget a little.

    If you're still set on building, I'd be looking at the E3300. It's a celeron but it's actually pretty good for gaming since you need to sink more of your money into a graphics card. I don't think you're going to see much of the DX11 eye candy with any DX11 card you can buy in your budget so focus on DX10 cards- ATI 4850/4870 or NVidia 9800/8800 GTS/GTX, something in that range.

    E3300 usually uses DDR2, DDR3 at this level would require a more expensive motherboard and you don't get enough bang for the buck moving up to DDR3. skimp on case and mobo in my opinion if it gets close. An ECS or Biostar motherboard and a $30 Rosewill case will be fine if it means you can afford a Nvidia GTS250 or something like that.

    PSU is good to spend a little more- probably 400-450W is enough for this build. 500 if you have several hard drives.

    And 4 40GB hard drives will not give you the speed boost you want plus it's more complicated and increases the chance of volume failure since you want to run R0. Just run 2 drives in RAID 0 if you want. You'll get like 90-95% of the speed and 50% less chance of total failure.
  9. I think this is perfect for your budget. It may go over $300 after taxes but this is the best your going to get with $300.
  10. coffeecoffee said:
    I think this is perfect for your budget. It may go over $300 after taxes but this is the best your going to get with $300.

    But don't expect to be doing much gaming with that.....
  11. sk1939 said:
    But don't expect to be doing much gaming with that.....

    Well, the user said he only plays CS:S, WoW and SC2 when it comes out, the integrated graphics should do fine as long as he plays on lowered resolutions. After all, his budget for the WHOLE BUILD is $300.
  12. coffeecoffee said:
    Well, the user said he only plays CS:S, WoW and SC2 when it comes out, the integrated graphics should do fine as long as he plays on lowered resolutions. After all, his budget for the WHOLE BUILD is $300.

    Granted thats not alot, but he should still be aware that upgrading or playing any kind of serious modern game is out of the question with that kind of budget...I mean that how much a netbook costs.....
  13. I already have the monitor/speakers from the last computer.

    If theres not a big difference between ddr3 and ddr2, then I can get a cheaper mobo off of ebay for about $50, and 4x1gb sticks of ddr2 for about $30 on ebay.

    That comes to $200 for the psu/ram/cpu/mobo

    My old computer has a PNY GeForce 7600gt, 256mb/ddr
    And it handles the games I play perfectly on max settings on my 8 year old otherwise stock gateway.

    Is the gpu I have worth putting in the new computer, or could I get a better one for fairly cheap? I plan on getting another gpu or keeping this one for the old computer.

    So I have $100 for cables/cd drive/hdd/gpu
    Right? What else do I need?

    I already said keyboard/mouse can go over the budget.
  14. and case, I don't think getting a used case is a problem? They should go for fairly cheap on ebay.
  15. Case shouldn't be a problem...and you can get a CD drive cheap....DVD Writers are like $30, SATA cables are an additional 10, and a 160GB drive is $37.99. You could probably keep the same GPU until you have more money to buy something better.
  16. In case you get lucky motherboards tend to come with cables....however I doubt at that price your will. If you haven't heard of it before check out craigslist in your area, you may be able to find people with some decent parts they want to get rid of. Also you cant use it to sell your current pc less the video card and theres some extra cash into your build.
  17. is that corsair psu a higher quality than the ocz one?
    They both have a 5year warranty, and both are the same price, but the corsairs 400w and the ocz 550w.

    Which cpu should I go with? is it worth it to go with the e7500 for $100, or the e6500 for $80, e5400 for $70, or the e3300 for $50 ?
  18. Quote:
    They both have a 3yr warranty, not 5 years.

    The OCZ has 2- 25a rails. The Corsair has 1- 30a rail. On your budget I'd go with the cheaper one.

    You don't want the E6500, that's an old 65nm cpu.

    E7500 is overprices.

    Celeron dual core E3300 or Pentium dual core E5300 are your best bet.
    $64.99 after promo code EMCYSYR62
    $44.99 after promo code EMCYSYR33

    I would still suggest a inexpensive G41 motherboard. Great overclockers.

    Both GPU's are the same price.

    "Intel Pentium Dual-Core E6500 Wolfdale 2.93GHz 2MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor "
    under the specs page on its listed as 45nm, not 65nm

    the e6500 has a higher fsb and faster clock, and is only $10 more than the e5400.
  19. Is that information right?

    What should I look for in a mobo? which north/south bridges are good/bad ?
    g= onboard graphics and p = no onboard graphics, right? So my guess is the p's will be cheaper?
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