Using old parts to rebuild for under $300

A few months ago, heat stress cracked my motherboard on my primary system. Since then, I have been waiting for the opportunity to rebuild that system and make some upgrades. I would appreciate some constructive comments on what you guys think, and maybe some recommendations on some things I may have missed.

Here's what I've got to work with so far:
System Usage from Most to Least Important: General use, gaming, number crunching

Parts Not Required: I already have keyboard, mouse, speakers, lcd, power supply, motherboard, hard drives, memory, and graphics card.
Power supply: Ultra VXS Modular 700 Watt (24+4, one 6-pin)
Motherboard: ECS GeForce6100PM-M2 (version 3.0) (mATX)
Graphics card: PNY GeForce 9800GTX+ 512MB
Memory: 4 GB PNY pc6400 DDR2

Preferred Website(s) for Parts:,,,

Country of Origin: USA

Parts Preferences: No specific preferences, as beggars can't be choosers. I'll buy whatever turns out to be a good deal for what I need.

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: 1680x1050

Operating System: Windows 7 Pro

Additional Comments:

Here are the parts I am considering:
Case: NZXT Gamma from Chief Value
Processor: Two choices:
AMD Athlon II X4 635 Propus (Model ADX635WFK42GM) from Chief Value
AMD Phenom II x4 925 (Model HDX925WFK4DGM) from Chief Value
CPU Cooler: CORSAIR CWCH50-1 CPU Cooling - Retail
Extras: COOLER MASTER R4-S2S-124K-GP 120mm Case Fan Case Fans - Retail

This all comes in at around $220 after rebates, which is great, but I was really wondering if I could find some other ways to save a little money, even if it's one of those "in the long run" kind of things. My biggest concerns with this build are re-using the power supply, but the one I have is in good condition right now, so it's no too much of a bother.

I'm not against duplicating some of the components I've already got if it means I can get a really good deal on components that are as good as or better than the ones I'm replacing. (If I found someone selling a Gamma or Rosewill Destroyer bundled with a decent PSU for a decent price, I would be willing to jump, for instance)

My final question is, keeping my budget in mind (total cost at or under $300 after rebates), is there a decent upgrade option for my graphics available, or is one even needed?
7 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about using parts rebuild
  1. Best answer
    You really have no need for water cooling.. you will probably be satisfy with air cooling from the stock heatsink. A good budget heatsink is the Cooler Master Hyper 212+ which retails for around $25-30 only. It also comes with a supply of thermal compound good for at least a few time use.

    Case: $36
    Phenom II x4 925 $90
    Heatsink: $28
    Extra Fans: $15

    I don't think you need extra fans.. I doubt you'll run that hot.. but it's really up to you. This will leave $131 for your graphic card.. and at this price range it's either the HD 5770/6770 or a GTX 460 or HD 6850 after MIR . It's better if you don't buy the case fans now.. so you will have $146.. the HD 6850 and GTX 460 are around $150-160 before MIR.
  2. Hard to do better than that Gamma. A case is always a personal choice though :D. Anyway go with the 925 and overclock it. I'm not sure what overclocking options you have on the board, but likely the board will limit your overclock before you need water cooling. I say just get the Hyper 212+ for now while it's at such a good price.
  3. You may want to look into getting a cooler for that 6150 chipset. If you really want to overclock you will be pushing that base speed a bit higher than it wants to go with that punny stock heatsink.
  4. Thanks for the quick replies! I'll seriously consider the Hyper as a cooling option. I think I just freaked out a bit because the comp that died had a MaxOrb on it, and with pets in the house I could barely keep it clean, but the vertical coolers seem to have decent fin spacing so that they can be blown out more easily and effectively.

    Regarding the graphics, I did find these all at ChiefValue (I've not done any real shopping there before now, they've got some decent deals I think):
    Galaxy GTX 465 1GB for $130 after rebate
    Sapphire HD 6770 1GB for $130
    ZOTAC GTX550Ti 1GB for $135

    Go with the 550Ti over the other two?

    Any recommendations for the chipset cooler?
  5. 465 is faster, but more power hungry,, a 460 is about 150ish and the ideal choice (faster than the 465, too), but out of whats been mentioned, the 550Ti would be the one i'd pick at that price range.
    cooler, i'd go with one of the scythe low profile ones 35-40, if your case can take full size, go bigger -- with pets your gonna have to clean often anyways as your GPU will have a fan or 2 itself - drop the extra case fans for now and only add if heat is an issue,, you are just going to add dust to the case if you don't need it and you aren't really going to overclock.
    phenom will give you a bit extra kick with the L3 cache
  6. Thanks again! I'll let you guys know what I end up getting and how it comes together.
  7. Best answer selected by azaron.
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