I've come over from New Zealand and now I'm in located in the UK. It didn't make sense to bring my computer from NZ so I sold it.
Buying a new complete system in the UK is expensive and I might be forced to sell it after ~1.5 years (my work visa duration).
The games I play are pre 2007 so I can get by with a used AM3 system for now and re-assess buying a high end system in ~1.5 years time.
1) Is buying a used AM3 system risky?
2) What auction sites etc can you buy a decent complete used system from? (not many on ebay)
You should be able to trust eBay. Look for high feedback, return policy, etc. Everything you'd want in the first place.
You might want to look for local pickup instead of shipping for computers, as that could shave a bit off the cost, and prevent damage that could arise out of people not knowing how to package a 15-25kg item properly.
Regarding the budget. I would like a mid-high end machine.
Was looking at about 750 pounds for a new machine (PII 955, ATi 6850 +the works). But I've come to the conclusion I don't want a new machine.
My issue is in 1.5 years time I may be forced to sell my powerful new computer that could've done me for several years more - I like holding onto them for a while ;p (this is what I had to do moving from NZ to the UK so don't want a repeat)
Hence I want to explore buying a used AM3 system.
I don't do anything demanding and the rig should do me for 1.5 years.
Then when I'm settled I can buy a high end rig.
So the budget for a second hand system would be whatever I can get relative to a 750 pound 955 system.
If its going to be more than 4-500 pounds for a complete used system (Decent X2/X3/X4 processor, 4Gb ram, video card, Win7, 22" Screen etc) I'd probably just go with a new system instead.