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Looking to build a low cost video editing/office PC

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December 2, 2011 5:20:39 PM

Looking to put together a PC for less than $500. Kind of new to technology (last PC I built was a 1.4 GHz Athlon about 10 years ago). Here are some specifics:


Approximate Purchase Date: 1/1/2012 (post-holiday pricing?)

Budget Range: Less than $500 After Rebates

System Usage from Most to Least Important: web surfing, video editing, video rendering, watching movies (hulu, netflix)

Parts Not Required: Monitor, OS, DVD writer

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Newegg

Country: USA

Parts Preferences: Intel, Antec case/psu

Overclocking: Not immediately, but maybe as needs grow

SLI or Crossfire: No

Monitor Resolution: 1280x1024 for now, but this will be the next upgrade, so much higher res within a year

Additional Comments: Prefer quiet machine, front USB, dual screen support for video editing, doesn't need to have killer speed, no games
a b B Homebuilt system
December 2, 2011 9:30:42 PM

For low noise you want to aim for low power consumption. For that I would recommend an i3-2100 based build since it's only 65W and it gives nice performance for the price.

i3-2100 - $124.99
Low power and hyperthreading, both good for your uses.

8GB G.Skill Ripjaws X - $29.99
This is incredibly cheap and may come in handy.

ASRock H61DE/S3 - $67.99
ASRock are pretty decent and an ATX board is fairly rare at this price. has plenty of USB ports and video inputs as well as SATA 3. HD graphics supports dual display too so having enough video inputs on the motherboard is important.

Intel 320 Series 40GB SSD - $94.99
Possibly a controversial choice since it's quite expensive and SATA II but Intel make some very nice SSD's, don't let the numbers fool you. An SSD should make the whole system feel that bit snappier and may help a lot.

Seagate Barracuda 250GB - $89.99
Hard drives are expensive at the moment so I wouldn't shell out for more than this personally.

Antec Earthwatts 380W - $44.99
Excellent PSU for the price and plenty of power for this build even if you add a low end graphics card for whatever reason.

Antec VSK-2000 - $44.99
No need to spend any more really for this type of build.

Total - $497.93 before rebates and shipping

I realise that's perilously close to $500 but it should suit you nicely.
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December 23, 2011 1:16:54 PM

To keep prices down a little, and future-proof a bit, how about this:

Antec Three Hundred + BP430 Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case 430W Power Supply $90

ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard $130

Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz $220

G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) $30

Western Digital Caviar Black WD5002AALX 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s $130

Total=600

Thoughts: The system will serve me very well for probably 5 years, and then I can overclock (will need a cpu cooler) the i5, or move up to an i7. On chip graphics are fine for me. I'll probably wait until hard drive prices drop before pulling the trigger.

Question: You said HD graphics supports 2 monitors. Can I drive 2 monitors off this mobo as-is, or will I need a graphics card?
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 23, 2011 1:35:27 PM

I don't think that's actually going to seem any faster to be honest and by the time it's not useful for relatively basic tasks I don't think the i5 will make much difference to be honest. It's up to you though of course.

You should be able to run 2 monitors from the mobo as is with Intel HD. Just make sure to install the drivers and enable it in the BIOS.
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December 23, 2011 1:38:50 PM

Best answer selected by teddymines.
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December 23, 2011 1:39:34 PM

Thanks for taking the time to answer. I'll definitely consider the i3.
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