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Beginner build: $500-700 moderate use for wife (GULP!)

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March 17, 2011 11:19:07 PM

Hi guys,

I'm building a box for my wife based on one that I built (with all your help back then too!) for my dad about a year ago. With the prices on many of the parts I used then dropping quite a bit, I obviously did some upgrading. (I did want to use the same model case and PSU though, since they were easy to work with.)

Any extra advice you can give? This is only my second build, so mainly interested that all this stuff will work together and be compatible...



Approximate Purchase Date: Next couple of days.

Budget Range: $500-700 After Rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: Internet, photo editing, office applications, CD-music burning, possibly some future video work...but only personal stuff (nothing high-end or professional in nature)

Parts Not Required: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: newegg.com, tigerdirect.com (if necessary)

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: AMD Phenom Quad, ATX form factor.

Overclocking: No

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: N/A

Additional Comments: None


*********************************
*********************************
NOTE: THIS BUILD NOW OBSOLETE!
UPDATED BUILD LIST FURTHER DOWN.
*********************************
*********************************


CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 840 3.2GHz Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor HDX840WFGMBOX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-880GA-UD3H AM3 AMD 880G SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

>>> Above CPU and MOBO offered as a combo at NewEgg: ($210)


CASE: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ($45)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

GPU: SAPPHIRE 100293L Radeon HD 5570 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Low Profile Ready Video Card ($65)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model F3-10666CL9D-8GBRL ($85)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HD: Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive ($40)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OPTICAL DRIVES: LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD Writer - Bulk - LightScribe Support - OEM (2 @ $19 = $38)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

PSU: OCZ ModXStream Pro Power Supply - 600-Watt, Modular, Dual +12V Rails, SATA, 80Plus ($60)
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...


Total: $543 (all prices after rebates/discounts)


Note:

1) Power supply from Tiger (NewEgg out of stock); all other parts are NewEgg.
2) Wife wants to be able to run multiple browsers, applications, etc. and she doesn't like to wait (like she is now with her six year old DELL)...so that's why the 8G of RipJaw RAM instead of 4G.
3) Wife wanted a 1T HD, but I got spooked by the reviews I read about the Seagate (and other) 1T drives. They seemed less reliable than the 500G drives. Figure I can always add another 500G later if needed. Your thoughts?

Think that's about it, guys. Thanks in advance for all your advice, recommendations and support. I'd be lost without the help provided on this forum.

John
March 17, 2011 11:28:59 PM

Ermm I suggest going with the build in my siggy. The 450$ build would best suit your needs. You can just drop the 4830 I suggest and change the motherboard for this motherboard.

Change the CPU in my build to a 955 as you have money to. 130$.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


No you don't need a dedicated card, this 4250 onboard is good enough and has USB 3.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You can also change the RAM for your kit. The end result is a cheaper than your build build for just about the same performance. In fact even better by a tiny bit.
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/82?vs=88


1. You don't need that much wattage.
2. 4GB is enough for anyone even myself using PTGui to stitch 360 pano's the 955 paired with 4gb is enough, however it is your build not mine so you can take or leave it situation.
3. That's not necessarily true, 500gb and 1TB has all the same reliability. It is the companies fault if it isn't reliable. You should be getting a 1TB Samsung F3, most reliable fast drive.
3 Cont. You can't add a drive out of the blue to make a 1TB drive. It doesn't work like that. You can do that by formatting the drive and then doing a RAID 0 setup. So the end result is more hassle waiting later.
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Related resources
March 17, 2011 11:48:21 PM

Show your wife you love her...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite... Combo Discount: -$11.99 Combo Price: $272.99
Intel Core i5-2300 Sandy Bridge 2.8GHz (3.1GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52300
ASRock H67M-ITX LGA 1155 Intel H67 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $81.99 FREE SHIPPING
Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770
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March 18, 2011 12:01:30 AM

Why_me does have a much faster option for you there. It's not that much more.
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March 18, 2011 1:46:38 AM

Thanks for all your input, guys. I found good advice from everyone and integrated many of your suggestions into this updated build list...

**********************************
**********************************
THIS IS AN OLD BUILD LIST!
LOOK BELOW FOR UPDATED/LATEST BUILD!
**********************************
**********************************


CPU: Intel Core i5-2300 Sandy Bridge 2.8GHz (3.1GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52300
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASRock H67M-ITX LGA 1155 Intel H67 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


>>> Above CPU and MOBO offered as a combo at NewEgg: ($273)


CASE: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ($45)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6811129042

GPU: SAPPHIRE 100293L Radeon HD 5570 1GB 128-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Low Profile Ready Video Card ($65)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6814102874

RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770 ($82)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive ($65)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OPTICAL DRIVES: LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD Writer - Bulk - LightScribe Support - OEM (2 @ $19 = $38)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827106333

PSU: SeaSonic S12II 430B 430W ATX12V V2.3/EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply ($70)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Total: $638 (all prices after rebates/discounts)


NOTES:
1) Why_Me made me feel guilty! How could I buy my wife a lousy AMD when she REALLY wants a Sandy Bridge?! Just from what I've read here, I assume that this Intel chip is much faster than the AMD? Also noticed that the MOBO recommended was an ITX instead of the original ATX. A little research on Wikipedia told me that the ITX should still line up with the holes/case slots that ATX uses. So I assume that this new MOBO should work with the Antec case above?

2) I stuck with the 8G RAM, just switched from RipJaw to the Mushkin as suggested. A few bucks cheaper and good reviews. I know 4G would probably be enough for what she's doing now. But for $40 extra, I figure the 8G will be in use for a long time in this household.

3) I took shinobi's advice on the Samsung HD. My wife was disappointed that she was getting "only" 500G when I told her about the Seagate reviews I'd read. Looks like the 1T Samsung that shinobi recommended had a lot better reviews. So, wifey will be happy once again to have her full terabyte. :love: 

4) Changed up the PSU as suggested by Proxi. I went with his first suggestion, the SeaSonic 430W, based on the reviews I read. As he said, probably more than we need...but it can always be used in the future and I liked what I saw on its reliability.


Any other advice or suggestions? If not, I guess this is a good way to go?

Thanks to everyone again for all the help this forum provides to us "new guys"...

John
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March 18, 2011 2:06:40 AM

You DON'T NEED A DEDICATED CARD!!!!!!

With H67 (even the 880G AMD chipset) You'll have onboard video. With the H67 the graphics are on the die. Meaning they are within the chip (2300 in your case). With the 880G, the graphics are located on the board. Which is why it is called ONBOARD graphics.

The 4250 handles 1080P flawlessly with the exception of crazy gaming, the Intel graphics on the 2300 perform a little better. Still you could easily infer that it'll handle your usage just fine.

Bottom line: SAVE YOUR MONEY, don't get a dedicated card when you don't need to.
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March 18, 2011 2:09:53 AM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This PSU instead. Save 30$ plus 10% more and you'll get the same performance practically. It may not be as quiet as the Seasonic, but I'm pretty sure it isn't LOUD! It's a great quality power supply which is something I can guarantee. Bottom line, save the 30$ for something else.

With all the money you just saved. (70$ off the card + 30$ off the power supply) You can afford an SSD for your wife and keep your budget. She'll be happy with a fast booting and low powered boot drive/scratch disk.
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March 18, 2011 3:00:58 AM

^ I think the illusion actually looks better.
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March 18, 2011 3:15:20 AM

aznshinobi said:
^ I think the illusion actually looks better.


Yep strictly personal choice. I've had my hands on both. I've always found newegg pics to be poor when it comes to judging looks, better to see or review, better yet to see in person.
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March 18, 2011 4:27:16 PM

Okay Guys,

A couple more things, if I can impose further on you...

1) After reading Shinobi's last post, I realize now that I don't need the graphics card. I knew that on-board graphics chips could be built onto the motherboard, but I didn't realize that the i-5 2300 actually had the graphics built into the chip itself. My (un)common sense was telling me that a card dedicated just to graphics would have to be much better than relying on the MOBO or (in this case) chip...but apparently I'm way off there. We're not doing crazy gaming at all with this, so apparently I was stupid to include a graphics card in the build. Taking that out saves us $65. Thanks!

2) So I did research on what a scratch disk is. (Told you I'm new at this!) Now I'm thinking that would be a cool way to go. I know that SSD drives are a lot faster, so tell me if this makes sense: Say I get an SSD drive, maybe around 32G-64G, to use as my C: drive. I install Win7 and all our programs on that. I use the 1T as our D: drive to store all our data. I assume that will allow faster boot up, faster system functioning, etc. Question: Knowing that SSD drives have read-write limits, is this method something that will be reliable over the long haul? In other words, would this kind of setup "wear out" the SSD over a matter of a couple of years or does throwing the data on the D: drive and just using the SSD for OS and programs "save it"?

3) Assuming #2 is a legit way to go, could you recommend a good SSD to use for this setup? I'm not looking to go with the absolute cheapest...I'd like to not have to worry about running out of room, for example. Or course, that's within reason. I saw some of those huge SSD drives listed at >$1,000! Let's say we're looking in the $150 range, give or take.

Thanks again for any suggestions or at least pointing me in the right direction!

John

PS: I appreciate the advice on the case, but I think my wife would kick me if she saw her computer fans with spinning blue lights! Actually, the smaller case would, with the shipping, end up costing more than the original Antec. On the PSU, I liked the reviews of the SeaSonic, so I'll kick in the extra few bucks and stick with that one, I think.
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March 18, 2011 7:23:21 PM

Scratch disks were really popular back in the day when RAM was expensive. I don't think it's so much needed now and an SSD used as a scratch disk would wear out faster.

As an OS drive you will need to actively manage the disk space of an SSD. Make a point to install large programs to the data drive and look up how to place the user folder on the HDD. Actually here is a link:
http://lifehacker.com/#!5467758/move-the-users-directory-in-windows-7

Corsair 80GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Vertex 2 or Agility 2 80GB should be about right, if you can find them.


On the case, my main point is that you don't need a huge one. In fact, if you are dropping the dedicated card you don't need a big PSU either.

You still need a little extra air flow for the i5 processor, or I would suggest a mini-ITX case.
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March 18, 2011 10:02:40 PM

Even the 60gb is sweet, It'll store Photoshop/Editing programs and your OS with room to spare. Trust me, I have my laptop running an 60gb SSD, it's fast and still has a lot of room left, if you consider 40gb alot.
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March 18, 2011 11:16:56 PM

I think you are on the right track with a sandy bridge build. But, why do you need a quad?
I suggest the i3-2100 @3.1: $125.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Why not get a nice small case?
Lian li makes some that will make her smile.
You should look at alltheir mini-ITX offerings, but a nice very small case which I have used is the PC Q07 $60:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Shop around and see if you can't find it in red, It is a stunning red anodized aluminum that will draw admiration.
I have a red V351, and I can't help running my hands over it every day.

You can fit a SSD and a hard drive in it.

Budget $100 for a SSD for the OS and apps. The speed increase is very noticeable.
That will get you something like a 64gb ssd.

Hard drive WD caviar green 1tb $60 + 0 for storage
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


You don't need a strong psu, you want a small one like
Seasonic SS300ET 300w $40 + 6
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
There, I think I have blown your budget, but isn't she worth it? Find a way.
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March 18, 2011 11:29:54 PM

You cross posted some questions.

1) The integrated graphics is good enough to play some games, and watch movies. It has the capability of a $50 discrete card. Not bad. A itx motherboard will have a free pci-e slot if you ever wanted a discrete graphics card.

2) A SSD is a great idea. W7 will take about 15gb without any space pruning.
Currently, I might suggest the samsung 64gb drive at $110
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It might pay to wait a bit, since some gen 3 drives are scheduled for this month.
Do not anguish over ssd specs, particularly sequential transfer rates. The strength of a ssd for normal use is the random access times, and they all do that very well. Also, do not worry about wearing one out. They are good for 5+ years of heavy usage, more than a desktop user will ever do. In 5 years, they will be obsolete anyway.

3) The lian li Q07 does not have case fans, it does not need them. The psu fan and case ventilation is sufficient.


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March 19, 2011 2:26:27 AM

^ Geo

OP Mentions Photo editing as a 2nd most important part of the computer. If it is anything like Photoshop, the Quad would be beneficial. I've run PS5 on the C2D's at my school and the 955 on my personal rig. The quad is so much faster than the C2D, granted completely different chips, but the rigs at my school are new for this year. Bottom line, the i5 is necessary.

I don't really like WD Greens. Find them a ripoff and expensive for slower speeds. (Not by a lot but still, slower speeds for more money).
Samsung F3 1TB (60$): http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Spinpoint-Cache-Desktop-H...

Or you could wait for them to drop price on newegg to 55$ again. They had em at that price for a while.

As for that PSU Geo I disagree again.
40$ 80 more watts, same efficiency. Currently has a 10% off deal, sounds good to me. Plus it's a fairly solid company.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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March 19, 2011 4:44:59 PM

Thanks, Guys. I've been reading everyone's replies and suggestions, as well as doing research on my own. Based on what everyone has said so far, this is what I've come up with...

************************
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THIS IS AN OLD BUILD LIST!
SEE FINAL BUILD LIST BELOW.
************************
************************


CPU: Intel Core i5-2300 Sandy Bridge 2.8GHz (3.1GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52300
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6819115076

ASRock H67M-ITX LGA 1155 Intel H67 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813157238


>>> Above CPU and MOBO offered as a combo at NewEgg: ($273)


CASE: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ($45)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6811129042

RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770 ($82)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820226095

SSD: Kingston SSDNow V+ Series SNVP325-S2B/64GB 2.5" 64GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) ($129)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive ($65)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6822152185

OPTICAL DRIVES: LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD Writer - Bulk - LightScribe Support - OEM (2 @ $19 = $38)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827106333

PSU: Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power ... ($39)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Total: $672 (all prices after rebates/discounts)


Notes:
1) Took the advice and dropped the PSU from the 430W Seasonic to the 380W Antec. I guess I've always read that you have to be certain not to under-power your rig, so I was going too much in the other direction. Everyone seems to think 300-400W will be more than enough. Antec had some good reviews and the price seemed right.

2) I went with the Kingston 64G SSD for a couple of reasons. Good reviews as opposed to some other drives. Also, the controller (Sand Force?) apparently seems to be the way to go. Plus, it had the TRIM feature and included a 2.5" to 3.5" bracket. Was $10-$20 more than some of the other 64G, but I'm thinking the little extra will be worth it. The suggested Samsung scared me a little only because so many people had issues with its FW update. Since I'm an idiot when it comes to that stuff (and a lot of other stuff, come to think of it) I thought I'd go with the Kingston because it seemed a little more idiot-proof.

I also researched the whole "moving the user folders to the data disk" procedure using the link from Proxi and a few other sites. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction with that. Seems a lot of the folks who have SSD issues don't make that change and then fill up their SSD with all the user junk.

3) Although the case I have is big, I stuck with it because: a) wife doesn't really care about the size since she is probably going to stick it down on the floor under her desk anyway, 2) the Lian Li case and some of the other micro-ITX cases I saw had only one external bay and we need at least two for the dual DVD drives that my wife wants, and 3) the Antec Three Hundred was cheaper and has free shipping!

So that's what I've got now, guys. Quite a change from my original build proposal...but that's why I posted here. I knew I could get a ton of good advice and ideas from all of you. I'm thinking that I'm close to pulling the trigger, but I wanted to post my final(?) build list to see if you think I'm good to go...or if there's something I missed.

Thanks again for all the help. We new builders would be in a heap of trouble doing this stuff without your guidance.

John
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March 19, 2011 8:17:13 PM

Kingston is very popular with many because of support and quality, especially in Europe. However, that is not a fast SSD drive by current standards, as just pointed out. It's about 2 generations out of date.

This Crucial drive would be the fastest option at the same price, but you would need to buy a cable for it:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Oh, and you don't have to sweat mounting an SSD really. No moving parts so a little velcro tape and you can stick it anywhere.
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March 19, 2011 9:29:05 PM

Once again, thanks for these final suggestions on the proper SSD to use for this build. I didn't realize that the Kingston I was going to purchase was a couple of generations old. After looking at both the OCZ and the Crucial, I decided to go with the Crucial even though it needed the extra cable. It looks like it would be worth the extra $$$ since it is a SATA 6Gb/s device, which this MOBO is capable of handling.

Oh...and thanks for letting me know about that Micro SATA cable!

So this looks like the final build, I guess...


FINAL BUILD LIST:


CPU: Intel Core i5-2300 Sandy Bridge 2.8GHz (3.1GHz Turbo Boost) LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52300
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6819115076

ASRock H67M-ITX LGA 1155 Intel H67 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Mini ITX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6813157238


>>> Above CPU and MOBO offered as a combo at NewEgg: ($273)


CASE: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ($45)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6811129042

RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Desktop Memory Model 996770 ($82)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6820226095

SSD: Crucial RealSSD C300 CTFDDAA064MAG-1G1 1.8" 64GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) ($130)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

SSD CABLE: StarTech 12" Micro SATA to SATA with SATA Power Adapter Cable Model MCSATAF12S ($18)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive ($65)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6822152185

OPTICAL DRIVES: LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD Writer - Bulk - LightScribe Support - OEM (2 @ $19 = $38)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6827106333

PSU: Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power ... ($39)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Prod [...] 6817371033


Total: $690 (all prices after rebates/discounts)


So I think that should be a wrap, right guys? I suppose that there could be a tiny tweak here and there...but then we'd always be waiting for the next new piece of tech to come out. With all your help, I have to believe that the wife will be THRILLED with this setup after her last seven years of being a Dell user! And I'm pretty sure that I'll get jealous and order this same setup for myself next month. :) 

Time to place the order?

John

PS: Mucho thanks to all who took the time to give me advice over the last few days. I REALLY appreciate it!
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March 19, 2011 10:10:31 PM

You might want to wait a week or two on the SSD. The next gen devices from crucial, the C400 and vertex 3 should be available this month. In the mean time, carve out a 128gb partition on your hard drive and install your os there. Plan on cloning that partition to a ssd when you get one.

It all looks good.
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March 19, 2011 11:21:24 PM

We might see price drops, hard to say for sure.

Geo, is it just my browser that is freaking out over the public comment under your avatar? I show this line of dashes that runs all the way out into each of your posts.
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March 19, 2011 11:34:53 PM

^ Same it's not just you
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March 20, 2011 12:24:23 AM

Vib...

Only two slots available on that mini-ITX. Can't get to my 8G without using two sticks of 4G.

John
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March 20, 2011 3:05:23 AM

Proximon said:
We might see price drops, hard to say for sure.

Geo, is it just my browser that is freaking out over the public comment under your avatar? I show this line of dashes that runs all the way out into each of your posts.


Strange, I have put up no avatar. I do see some dashes enclosed in quotes, but I have no idea where they came from. I am now using IE9 and do not see anything like what you saw. What browser are you using?
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March 20, 2011 4:17:05 AM

I meant where your avatar would be if you had one. So you have entered 20 or so dashes in your personal quote field, but somehow Firefox doesn't handle it correctly and it "breaks out" of the column where the forum information is supposed to be.
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March 20, 2011 4:53:47 AM

^ Yup same, I'm also using Firefox.
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March 20, 2011 5:09:18 PM

Proximon said:
I meant where your avatar would be if you had one. So you have entered 20 or so dashes in your personal quote field, but somehow Firefox doesn't handle it correctly and it "breaks out" of the column where the forum information is supposed to be.


I removed the dashes; I did not realize where they would show up.

It should be fixed now.
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March 20, 2011 5:44:10 PM

Thanks :) 
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!