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Update: Which of 2 systems should I buy for $300

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December 29, 2011 7:47:18 AM

Hi,

Update: I’m trying to buy an inexpensive computer. Looking for the best gaming system
I can get within the $300-$400 range. Plus the additional cost for a video card upgrade.

I’ve narrowed it down to two systems. Any feedback on these choices would be appreciated.
I’m looking for a gaming computer. I will upgrade RAM and video card on either option. Both
systems are available at T____.com. Both seem to offer me the best processing power etc.,
in a low $300.00 price range (+ misc upgrades).

Question: Would the i3 (Sandy bridge) be so superior that I should give up the free windows 7
and DVD-RW which come only with the Acer Athlon as option 2)? Neither system option offers
too good of a warranty. Both are $299.00

1) New COMBO: Core i3-2100/H61/4GB/500GB HDD Mini SuperCombo Desktop.
Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz LGA. 500 GB SATA 7200 m
*NO OS Included.

2) Cert Refurbished ACER: Acer AX1420-U5832 Desktop PC Athlon II X4 645(3.1GHz) 4GB 1TB
HDD Capacity Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit. 1 -DVDRW *OS - Includes Windows 7.

THANKS!

More about : update systems buy 300

December 29, 2011 8:53:54 AM

The i3 for sure.

Please note that neither of these builds would be able to game decently. I would suggest either building a system from the ground up or adding a Graphics card to that mix.

If you need help selecting parts, feel free to ask.
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December 29, 2011 9:19:45 AM

i3 FTW.

But you can't really put the word 'gaming' and '$300' in the same sentence.
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December 29, 2011 9:36:33 AM

n-dru said:
i3 FTW.

But you can't really put the word 'gaming' and '$300' in the same sentence.


I beg to differ, AMD APU's allowed it. If only just. :-P
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December 29, 2011 4:01:23 PM

Quote:
The i3 build is newer and faster, so i would choose that one.



Thanks!I will go for i3.
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December 29, 2011 4:02:10 PM

Novuake said:
The i3 for sure.

Please note that neither of these builds would be able to game decently. I would suggest either building a system from the ground up or adding a Graphics card to that mix.

If you need help selecting parts, feel free to ask.


Thanks!I will go for the i3 then.
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December 29, 2011 4:03:58 PM

n-dru said:
i3 FTW.

But you can't really put the word 'gaming' and '$300' in the same sentence.


I understand, yet with the right card I will get by. Thanks.
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December 29, 2011 4:12:44 PM

I have had great luck with EVGA and PNY Nvidia Refurbs from Newegg. Note you are still taking a chance. I have bought a GTX 260 for $70.00 less than what they were at the time (over 200.00). I bought an unlockable PNY GTX 465 for $99.99. Don't forget AMD's offerings.
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Best solution

December 29, 2011 11:52:27 PM

Aside: What case and PSU come with the i3 'super combo' sometimes the parts listed are the only ones you get.... i.e no keyboard, mouse. Make sure the PSU is not total bleep or you'll need to throw it away when you get your video card. For example, a recent i3 supercombo at newegg (and I love newegg) came with a $30 "Broadway Com Corp 1244MA-BLACK Glossy black Steel ATX Mini Tower Computer Case 500W Power Supply". I don't use sub-$30 PSUs.... maybe I'm too picky.

(I'd go with the i3 also, then find some way to talk my way up to an i5... totally blowing the $300 budget). I'd also look at the package savings on a supercombo, typically $30 off the list price, and see if picking my own PSU and case and... is doable.

Net, I like the i3 better, but you have $100+ of upgrades to do to make this workable plus your video card.

Second Aside: Do you have any pentium 4 or later PC you can cannibalize? Can you take one from a friend's basement? The older PSU will work great for i3 and hd6770 class video. You'd just need MB, Mem, Disk, Video). Thats $200 plus video plus whatever you want to spend on disk (disk is way too expensive right now. If you can get by with an older drive prices should drop by 2X in 9 months with full disk production getting back in swing. Currently a mainstream TB drive is $125.

Aside3: Microsoft has Student prices on Win7. If you can find a comp sci student they can get a freebie, rest of students can buy at (I think) $65.
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December 30, 2011 12:10:19 AM

tsnor said:
Aside: What case and PSU come with the i3 'super combo' sometimes the parts listed are the only ones you get.... i.e no keyboard, mouse. Make sure the PSU is not total bleep or you'll need to throw it away when you get your video card. For example, a recent i3 supercombo at newegg (and I love newegg) came with a $30 "Broadway Com Corp 1244MA-BLACK Glossy black Steel ATX Mini Tower Computer Case 500W Power Supply". I don't use sub-$30 PSUs.... maybe I'm too picky.

(I'd go with the i3 also, then find some way to talk my way up to an i5... totally blowing the $300 budget). I'd also look at the package savings on a supercombo, typically $30 off the list price, and see if picking my own PSU and case and... is doable.

Net, I like the i3 better, but you have $100+ of upgrades to do to make this workable plus your video card.

Second Aside: Do you have any pentium 4 or later PC you can cannibalize? Can you take one from a friend's basement? The older PSU will work great for i3 and hd6770 class video. You'd just need MB, Mem, Disk, Video). Thats $200 plus video plus whatever you want to spend on disk (disk is way too expensive right now. If you can get by with an older drive prices should drop by 2X in 9 months with full disk production getting back in swing. Currently a mainstream TB drive is $125.

Aside3: Microsoft has Student prices on Win7. If you can find a comp sci student they can get a freebie, rest of students can buy at (I think) $65.



Thanks for taking the time with some good detailed ideas.
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December 30, 2011 12:11:01 AM

Best answer selected by Owens100.
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