Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Highly Upgradeable <$400 Build

Last response: in Systems
Share
December 31, 2011 9:23:44 PM

Hi all!

I am considering building a new system as my current laptop is nearing its useful end. I am pretty broke but I need a dependable system around that I can count on. I built a computer back in the late 90's but am not up to date on this stuff anymore. The $400 budget is really a kind of functional starting point. I want to buy a motherboard that has up to date ports and architectures that can last me through the next 5-7 years, and a PSU with the same longevity, and a quality but inexpensive case. Ease of assembly is important to me since I haven't done this in a while. I will initially run Ubuntu Linux, since it is free, and will probably set up a dual-boot configuration with windows 7 (or 8) later, once my laptop really kicks the bucket. I would be happy starting with onboard graphics IF the savings are significant enough to offset compromise in flexibility and performance of the chipset/cpu selection it requires. But I would most certainly be adding a GPU in the next year or 2 anyway.

Approximate Purchase Date: March 2012 or later (I'm posting in advance so I can get plenty of ideas, please include upcoming hardware in your suggestions if you think its worth noting. I will keep an eye on this thread and let everyone know once I have made up my mind.)

Budget Range: <$400 (Does not include monitor or peripherals)

Country: U.S.

Overclocking: Maybe

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe (much later)

Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: Quiet and stable are more important to me than raw performance. Most of my needs are simple, but the number one concern is flexibility of future upgrades and additions. I intend to keep the case/PSU/Mobo for as long as possible, possibly switching out the CPU and/or GPU once or twice in the next 6+ years.

One final note: I am not a big spender or performance freak, so while I will expand this system in the coming years, I will likely never buy super cutting-edge components. I do like to play games on occasion, but am happy playing GOTY editions from the past, or running newer games at low settings. I am not picky about game performance.

Thanks for the help!
December 31, 2011 9:41:57 PM

Qty. Product Description Savings Total Price


Xigmatek ASGARD II B/S CPC-T45UD-U01 Black / Silver 0.8 mm SECC / Aluminum and Aluminum Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer ...
Item #: N82E16811815005
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
$20.00 Mail-in Rebate
$39.99


HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822145299
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
$79.99


GIGABYTE GA-A75M-UD2H FM1 AMD A75 (Hudson D3) SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
Item #: N82E16813128511
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$15.00 Instant
$10.00 Mail-in Rebate Card
$109.99
$94.99


Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power ...
Item #: N82E16817371033
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$15.00 Instant
$59.99
$44.99


Team Elite 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Desktop Memory Model TED38192M1333HC9DC
Item #: N82E16820313086
Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy
$35.99
1

Team 8GB Micro SDHC Flash Card Model TG008G0MC24A
Item #: N82E16820313182
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
-$6.99 Saving
$6.99
$0.00


AMD A4-3400 Llano 2.7GHz Socket FM1 65W Dual-Core Desktop APU with DirectX 11 Graphic AMD Radeon HD 6410D AD3400OJGXBOX
Item #: N82E16819103955
Return Policy: CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
$69.99
1

Newegg Promotional Gift Card - $10.00
Item #: N82E168GC000001
Your Promotional Gift Card will be emailed 4 days after invoice.
Subtotal: $365.94



I reccomend one of the APU series as the onboard video on these are very decent. They perform slightly better than a Radeon HD 5550, and will play modern titles at 35-50 fps.
This build will also OC pretty well if your into that but the main thing it provides is the onboard video is very good but enjoy it!

___________________________

AMD 1605t 6 core @ 3.2ghz l 8gb 1600mhz team elite l150 gb veloci l visiontek 6860 l gigabyte 990x fps on lowered settings.
December 31, 2011 10:34:30 PM

brian1bialey,

Thanks for the super-quick suggestions. Do you think that small power supply will be sufficient in the future if I install a video card and a second hard drive? I would think, since I'm looking for expandability, I would need at least a 500 watt?
Related resources
December 31, 2011 10:51:19 PM

brian1bialey said:
Qty. Product Description Savings Total Price


Xigmatek ASGARD II B/S CPC-T45UD-U01 Black / Silver 0.8 mm SECC / Aluminum and Aluminum Mesh Bezel ATX Mid Tower Computer ...
Item #: N82E16811815005
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
$20.00 Mail-in Rebate
$39.99


HITACHI HDS721050CLA362 (0F10381) 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Item #: N82E16822145299
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
$79.99


ASUS M5A97 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
Item #: N82E16813131767
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
$99.99


Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power ...
Item #: N82E16817371033
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
-$15.00 Instant
$59.99
$44.99


Team Elite 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) Desktop Memory Model TED38192M1333HC9DC
Item #: N82E16820313086
Return Policy: Memory Standard Return Policy
$35.99
1

Team 8GB Micro SDHC Flash Card Model TG008G0MC24A
Item #: N82E16820313182
Return Policy: Standard Return Policy
-$6.99 Saving
$6.99
$0.00


AMD A4-3400 Llano 2.7GHz Socket FM1 65W Dual-Core Desktop APU with DirectX 11 Graphic AMD Radeon HD 6410D AD3400OJGXBOX
Item #: N82E16819103955
Return Policy: CPU Replacement Only Return Policy
Protect Your Investment (expand for options)
$69.99
1

Newegg Promotional Gift Card - $10.00
Item #: N82E168GC000001
Your Promotional Gift Card will be emailed 4 days after invoice.
Subtotal: $370.94
Newegg Promotional Gift Card - $10.00
Item #: N82E168GC000001
Your Promotional Gift Card will be emailed 4 days after invoice.


I reccomend one of the APU series as the onboard video on these are very decent. They perform slightly better than a Radeon HD 5550, and will play modern titles at 35-50 fps.
This build will also OC pretty well if your into that but the main thing it provides is the onboard video is very good but enjoy it!

___________________________

AMD 1605t 6 core @ 3.2ghz l 8gb 1600mhz team elite l150 gb veloci l visiontek 6860 l gigabyte 990x fps on lowered settings.


Llano is not compatible with an AM3+ board.

Even though Llano CPUs are solid for the price range, the FM1 socket will be replaced in the future with FM2, so may not be the best long term.
December 31, 2011 11:12:56 PM

And yes that PSU will supply power to that. There are many people who use an i3-2100 + 5770 with that PSU and your System should only use 330-350 watts but if you want a stronger psu this is all you need!
ttp://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?
hItem=N82E16817371034

However if your going to install a video card and a second hardrive yes i would reccomend a 500 watt PSU i reccomend this one:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



Also for video card I'd probably reccomend a 5770, 6850 or , gtx460 if you like nvidia:

5770 (Cheap And performs well best buy imo) 5770vs6770 same but 5770 is cheaper

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



6850

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

gtx 460

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


And for a second hardrive unless you ever want to do a raid config i reccomend a External usb harddrive. I have a 300gb one i use for my video renders and such and its great heres one that pretty good:

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

500gb for 90 bucks but anyway whatever you do i hope you enjoy your new build :) 
December 31, 2011 11:21:45 PM

>>>Llano is not compatible with an AM3+ board.

Even though Llano CPUs are solid for the price range, the FM1 socket will be replaced in the future with FM2, so may not be the best long term.[/quotemsg]
>>>

I just noticed that. But considering I will likely be purchasing sometime around march, the FM2 might be out by then, yes? I like the value proposition of AMD's APU's, but I don't want to buy a socket that isn't going to be supported 2 years from now.
December 31, 2011 11:33:50 PM

@kaut2001 i corrected the mobo ;p
December 31, 2011 11:40:10 PM

kraut2001 said:
>>>Llano is not compatible with an AM3+ board.

Even though Llano CPUs are solid for the price range, the FM1 socket will be replaced in the future with FM2, so may not be the best long term.

>>>

I just noticed that. But considering I will likely be purchasing sometime around march, the FM2 might be out by then, yes? I like the value proposition of AMD's APU's, but I don't want to buy a socket that isn't going to be supported 2 years from now.[/quotemsg]

We aren't sure yet when the exact release is. IF FM2 is out, I would say that will be a solid bet, as AMD plans to use it even for it's higher end CPUs. If it isn't, then an Intel would be the only route with an upgrade future.
!