First time desktop

Hello everyone! This is my first post on the forums here, so forgive me if I'm in the wrong category/subcategory/etc...

I've got a question that needs to be answered; hence the post. You see, I currently have a laptop. It's okay, but nothing special. I'm getting into video editing, and my lappy can't really handle it. So I've come to the conclusion that I want to either build a PC or buy my friends old system. Now, I'm aware of what components are required to build a PC, but I need an educated answer on my friends old system. His system is as follows:

Pentium D 820 (2.8GHz, dual core, circa 2005)
2 GB of DDR2 memory
NVIDIA 8600gt (256mb of GDDR3 in this case)
Appropriate motherboard (not aware of brand, but it's obviously socket 775 and has 1 PCI Express x16 slot)
Power supply (again, not sure of the exact wattage, but I'll find out)
Windows 7 32bit

He also mentioned he would leave his copy of Adobe After Effects on it (A plus for me because I don't have an advanced video editing software at the moment). Now I realize everything except the OS is outdated, but he said he would sell it to me for cheap (around 100ish). The motherboard is capable of holding more memory, albeit the 32bit OS would only recognize about 3.5GB of it. Other than video editing, I would be web surfing, playing Minecraft (and some older games too), and other basic stuff. So would it be wise to purchase his system? I do have some money to spare, so I could upgrade it. Let me guys know what you think :D
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  1. Well, clearly its an older system that won't give you great performance. If you chuck in another 2gb of RAM it'll handle your web surfing, minecraft and older games pretty well without worry of a RAM bottleneck. The GPU will be good for older games. Since you get the whole thing (already assembled, known working, with OS and software installed) it might be worth it to you. You obviously understand that its going to be very slow relative to modern entry-level desktops and even most inexpensive notebooks. You could spend $500 and get much better performance. But its only 100 bucks so your call. But at least tell your friend you don't want it filled up with his nasty dust :)
  2. Thanks for the reply larkspur! It will indeed be relatively slow, but as a first time desktop with some upgrade options, I'm going to consider it. I'm not willing to spend $500 at the moment, but maybe in the future :D I was also contemplating buying a Core 2 Duo for it sometime in the future. The E7600 would fit the bill and give a performance boost, but I'll have to recheck the compatability!
  3. If the motherboard is indeed compatible with a C2D (though really do your homework on this!), then for $100 I don't see why not. My C2D is pretty fast for video editing. Sure it may take a few minutes longer to process than a quad or six core, but since I multitask, I go do something else while it does its job.

    By the way, for the future you'll want at least 8 GB of RAM, a 64-bit OS, and if you can budget it, a quad core CPU. Keep that in mind for if someday you do decide to get a whole new computer.
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