Long time reader seeking advice :)

Hey guys, long time reader here. Hope you guys can give me some advice. Planning to buy a computer this weekend for mi little brother. His old PC just failed this week and he is already in school, therefore the rush.

I saw this one at a local store (I know I can get a totally better value if I build it with your advice... but I'll put that off for now). It has the following specs:

Intel dual core e5400
DDR2 1GB PC 667
500 GB SATA2 7200
Case with 430W PS
DVD Burner

For $250 including assembly + tax

Is it a decent buy? Doesn't include OS, and I would add a GT 240 for $70 through newegg. I wouldn't have to change the PS right? I know stock power supplies tend to suck but I think 450 should be enough. I would also add some ram in the near future.

The PC will be for schoolwork, internet, videos... and gaming! His monitor is 1024 x 768 and would probably upgrade to something like 1366 x 768 so even recent games (BFBC2, LFD2, DiRT 2, Batman: AA) should be playable at decent frame rates, right? Not aiming for a powerful gaming rig, just want him to stop asking for my computer when he feels like playing :D .

So what do you guys think?? Is it decent? Thanks!
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  1. First thing I'd do is make sure that system actually has a PCI-Ex16 expansion slot. A lot of these cheap pre-builds come with custom motherboards where some components are not included in order to lower the cost/use cheaper components.

    Secondly, I'd replace the RAM (or add to it) to a minimum of 2GB; again, checking the specs to make sure how you can upgrade it first.

    For this system, I wouldn't worry about replacing the PSU immediately, if all you're putting in there is a GT 240 graphics card.

    All in all, I'd say look a lot closer at this system before dropping any money on it.

    -Wolf sends
  2. Thanks for the response Wolf. About the MB, I checked and it does have a PCI-Ex16 slot.
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