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Buy or Build? Need 2 New Office Boxes

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July 21, 2010 5:46:26 PM

Hi

I'm looking to replace 2 computers in my office that have been an annoyance for too long.

Below are the specs of what's in them now. Both systems are used only for general MS desktop applications and internet access.
The P4 system is not really that slow but I need an additional box so I'll probably keep that in service.

Could it be cheaper to build 2 new boxes with Micro ATX cases and onboard video & sound than purchase 2 new from Dell or other lower cost vendor? I don't need monitors or keyboards.

There's cases on Newegg.com for $15 to $30 and some Motherboard / CPU / VGA Combos

I'm not sure what to look for as far as CPU on the low end.
Certainly would want something that is not a dog. At least like the P4 below?

Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks

System #1 (not bad now)
Pentium 4
1.7 GHz
1GB RAM
ATI Rage 128 4X AGP 4X
Win XP Pro

System #2 (garbage)
Pentium III
730 MHz
256MB RAM
Win XP Pro

More about : buy build office boxes

July 21, 2010 6:31:43 PM

Building you own always results in lesser costs for same components or better components at same cost, when compared to a pre-built system.
For your own build, Tom's $550 budget PC would be perfect for you.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cpu-gpu-overclock,2...

Subtracting the cpu cooler & graphic card gives you a very good general use PC for about $375.
Configuring through Dell or any other OEM will increase the price by about $40-50 for similar class components.
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July 21, 2010 8:48:05 PM

Thanks, that a great start.

The Asus M4A77TD Mobo has no on onboard video. What's the cheapest video card I can add that will handle 19" flat screen monitors.

*Or is there an alternate Mobo with video that may save some more money?

Also, without the AX5770 video card, can I reduce the PSU to less wattage?

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July 21, 2010 9:01:22 PM

I got a geforce 210 powering my monitor so I think that would be it, mine was like $30
maybe even cheaper on ebay
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Best solution

July 21, 2010 9:01:58 PM

I would actually buy somethign pre-built.

Here is a nice sample System that includes an Keyboard, Mouse, OS, and Monitor.
http://configure.us.dell.com/dellstore/config.aspx?oc=b...
(All Items missing from "Tom's builds"
Toss in Next Day on-site service for a year all for $439 its a really good price.
And if you look around, you can likely get an even better deal.

It's rarely worth the time/effort to build General Duty Office machines.

Don't forget the extra time and effort by accounting to itemize proper depreciation on the individual parts.
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July 21, 2010 9:56:43 PM

I like your idea better than building. Too much hassle for something that cheap.
I don't need expansion so it's a done deal.

Thanks
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July 28, 2010 12:42:46 AM

Best answer selected by magnetman.
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