I went price shopping today in preparation of a cheap-o SB build. I'm going the cheap route because I really don't have much money and I need to buy a new PC to get me by, and also I need to buy an HD set.
The following is a list of prices I got for different components. Please let me know if I should beware of any component that is too cheap:
Intel i3 2100 = $127
Intel DH6/BE (?) MoBo = $105 (need to check if ATX)
2x2 DDR3 RAM = $50
Case + PSU = $43
(Mercury? don't know brand of PSU, guy says it's by the same maker of the case)
Total = $327 (converted from 91 Kuwaiti Dinars)
The other place I went to would give me the case ($29) and Thermaltake PSU ($80), matches above prices, and the total would be $468
I would be most concerned about the psu.
A bad psu can cause all sorts of problems, possibly damaging your other components. Do not cut corners there.
Mercury is not a brand I am familiar with.
The only case/psu combo I would feel comfortable is with Antec.
Look for Seasonic, Antec, Corsair, XFX, PC P&C to name a few quality brands. There are others.
Also, the graphics card is the main driver of the need for psu power.
If you have a later upgrade card in mind, then get a psu that can drive it up front.
You are probably looking at a 400-650w unit depending.
i3-2100 is a great chip. You will do fine with any H67/H61/Z68 motherboard.
Get the cheapest 1.5v DDR3 ram you can find. Anything works well with a sandy. Don't pay extra for faster speeds, latencies, or fancy heat spreaders.
If you can find a single 4gb stick at the lowest price, get it. It will preserve your expansion options, and the single channel operation will not be an issue.
Since you are on a cheap budget, perhaps you can find a used case or other components.
thanks for the advice. is 4 Gb RAM low these days? I doubt I'll really need more. The most I can imagine is maybe having a movie in GOMplayer minimized (paused), firefox with some arbitrary number of tabs, possibly mediaplayer for tunes (hate itunes) and maybe visual studio 2010 running lol. on my old e8400 w/ 4 Gb, that was just fine.
I think I may go with that cheapo case/psu until i can afford to swap in a better one. i don't wanna go used with either a case or PSU. the PSU is obvious but i just don't like a used case lol. i'm wierd like that. that said, i will take a look at some used parts, it's not like i'm going to be making sweet monkey love to the case
Actually, the new entry level Thermaltake PSU's with 80 Bronze certification are all OK and have been receiving decent reviews. Guessing by the price ($80) it probably going to be a 450W LitePower or TR2 Bronze Series PSU, which will be quite adequate and have no problems handling a video-card upgrade down the road.
watch the 430w corsair builder's series on newegg, its $45 normally, but sometimes they put a $20 MIR on it, and with its $2 shipping, thats a quality PSU for $27, and 430w is more than enough. good luck in your build.
I'll look around for some other mobos, but I should be fine with a BS PSU until I get a video card I think.
And is there ANY reason that I should get more than 4gb ram this year (keeping in mind i'm not doing professional graphics/etc) ?
I think 4gb will be fine, particularly if you are not doing heavy multitasking, or using 64 bit enabled apps like photoshop.
But as to ANY reason:
1) Some motherboards will be sensitive to mismatched ram. Even the same part number can be constructed of different components, possibly resulting in incompatibility.
That is why ram is sold in kits. From what I can tell, the risk is small with the newer sandy motherboards.
as for 8gb of RAM, unless you feel like upping the budget to fit that in, I would suggest against it. Almost all people run fine with 4gb, and the only thing you get is faster program open times, which don't really matter if you have a little patience. I'm running an i3-2100/6850 system right now with 4gb, and it runs fine.