New Low-budget entry build

I've had a request for a new build from a friend.

The demands on this rig will be mediocre at best. Low-end gaming basically. The games that will be played will be a few years old: Age of Empires 3, Tes4 Oblivion, that sort of thing... at the 1440x900 resolution, high graphic settings, no AA, aiming for a decent framerate of perhaps 30-40fps. Nothing fancy.

I'm thinking a 5650 should handle it. All the other hardware should merely support the card and not bottleneck it.

Aside from this, not much use other than surfing the net and word processing.

I would prefer the micro-atx form factor. A smaller machine will be of greater appeal.

The challenge here is to keep the budget down, WAY down while keeping the quality decent.

-It must have some sort of hard drive and it *should* have at least 2Gb of ram.
- OS will be Win7
-DVD drive not necessary
-I have thought about used, however I can't find anything decent in micro-atx.
-No OC, stock cooling will do.
8 answers Last reply
More about budget entry build
  1. how low in price do you plan to go?
  2. That is the question. I built a fairly capable system for a family member with the total bill coming in just under 400. Plays all DX10 games well, DX11 gets to be a bit much.
  3. Let's say $300.
  4. About as cheap as you can get:

    Athlon II X3 450 w/ Biostar 880 Motherboard: $119.98 w/ $10 MIR
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.581123

    4GB DDR3-1333: $41.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231396

    Samsung DVD burner: $16.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151192

    Coolermaster Elite 310 with Coolermaster Elite 460W Power Supply: $64.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119218
    Not the most efficient PSU, but about as low as I dare go for Case+PSU

    Western Digital Caviar Blue SATA 3 500 GB HDD: $39.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136769

    Powercolor HD4650: $48.99
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814131360

    $331.94
  5. Thanks for the suggestion. I was kind of hoping for a micro atx case as well, there are several that come with 300W PSUs that sell for about 50.

    I like the deal on the cpu & mobo.

    No need for the DVD burner.

    I think I'll be able to squeeze under 300. *herm* less than the cost of my CPU.
  6. beware of such cheap power supplies.
  7. $50 might be cheap for a ~700W power supply, but a 300W? I'm not so sure. If you look at 300W PSUs, the cheapest of these costs as much as a cheesecake.

    Nevertheless you have a point. I'll have to read the reviews and specs carefully.
  8. There are a few quality PSUs for under $50 like the Antec EA-380D or Seasonic SS-350ET. Maybe put it in one of these: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811154094

    This might be an answer too: (Antec 4482) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129071. It comes with the EA-380D. $69.99 AR.
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