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Sub $300 Build Help Needed

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March 6, 2012 6:15:03 PM

Hello all.

Im trying to build my grandparents a sub $300 system. The goal is $250 or lower. I dislike using mail in rebates as a small note.

Purchase Dates: Within 2 weeks

Uses:
Basic Internet usage, Basic Office Software Usage, Social Networking

Existing components:
Dell 19" LCD Monitor (Less than 1080p resolution), Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers, Networking Equipment, Silver Thermal Compound, Windows 7 Software Key

Build Location: USA Michigan

Preferred Websites: Newegg, Walmart, Tigerdirect, Zipzoomfly (Im willing to buy from nearly anywhere)
Special Note: I am a walmart employee, so I benefit from a 10% discount on the price of parts. (However 6% sales tax does occur)

I have issues in selecting PSUs. They always seem to be hit or miss.
I believe the best bang for their buck will be to get a case with a decent PSU bundled with it.

These are the parts I have chosen so far:

Intel Celeron G530 : $48
http://www.amazon.com/Intel-G530-CACHE-Processor-BX8062...

ASRock H61M-VS : $49.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL Value Ram 8gb 2x4gb : $36.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Agility SSD 30gb : $49.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
* Currently Out of Stock

Rosewill Generic Case w/ 350w PSU: $44.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

LG 22x Dvd Burner : $15.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Will anyone nitpick my choices please? Also, if anyone knows of good deals on the items Im looking at that are out of stock, that'd be cool.

More about : 300 build needed

March 6, 2012 6:29:39 PM

sazyario said:
Hello all.

Im trying to build my grandparents a sub $300 system. The goal is $250 or lower. I dislike using mail in rebates as a small note.

Purchase Dates: Within 2 weeks

Uses:
Basic Internet usage, Basic Office Software Usage, Social Networking

Existing components:
Dell 19" LCD Monitor (Less than 1080p resolution), Keyboard, Mouse, Speakers, Networking Equipment, Silver Thermal Compound, Windows 7 Software Key

Build Location: USA Michigan

Preferred Websites: Newegg, Walmart, Tigerdirect, Zipzoomfly (Im willing to buy from nearly anywhere)
Special Note: I am a walmart employee, so I benefit from a 10% discount on the price of parts. (However 6% sales tax does occur)

I have issues in selecting PSUs. They always seem to be hit or miss.
I believe the best bang for their buck will be to get a case with a decent PSU bundled with it.

These are the parts I have chosen so far:

Intel Celeron G530 : $46.63
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Intel-G530-CPU-2.40GHz-Proces...
* Currently Out of Stock

ASRock H61M-VS : $49.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

G.SKILL Value Ram 8gb 2x4gb : $36.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

OCZ Agility SSD 30gb : $49.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
* Currently Out of Stock

Rosewill Generic Case w/ 350w PSU: $44.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Will anyone nitpick my choices please? Also, if anyone knows of good deals on the items Im looking at that are out of stock, that'd be cool.

30GB for your main drive will not be enough. I suggest that you get at least a 128 GB drive for OS, and other software. Also that motherboard does NOT have any onboard graphics, so you would need to add a video card of some sort.
Related resources
March 6, 2012 6:30:35 PM

I would suggest this for them as it should be all the more they would need.

Pentium G850/H61/4GB/500GB SuperCombo

Then add in this PSU instead:

CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

The PSU has a discount code: 15% off w/ promo code EMCNGNJ22, ends 3/7

Which brings your total down to under $300. The onboard graphics will more than suffice for what they are looking for and wanting to use the computer for.
March 6, 2012 6:36:15 PM

clarkjd said:
30GB for your main drive will not be enough. I suggest that you get at least a 128 GB drive for OS, and other software. Also that motherboard does NOT have any onboard graphics, so you would need to add a video card of some sort.


Windows 7 only requires 20gb for an install.
Which is all they will need.
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/products/sy...

Also, the prices of SSDs are MUCH cheaper than traditional hard drives. If traditional hdds werent at inflated prices Id spend approximately the same price on one of those instead.

Are you sure H61 boards don't have integrated video? The CPU has the chip, and the chipset on the board enables it if I think correctly.
March 6, 2012 6:38:48 PM

The H61 board will allow you to use the onboard video
March 6, 2012 6:39:10 PM

Pezcore27 said:
I would suggest this for them as it should be all the more they would need.

Pentium G850/H61/4GB/500GB SuperCombo

Then add in this PSU instead:

CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

The PSU has a discount code: 15% off w/ promo code EMCNGNJ22, ends 3/7

Which brings your total down to under $300. The onboard graphics will more than suffice for what they are looking for and wanting to use the computer for.


They unfortunately wont have the money for 2 weeks. So that ShellShocker deal we can't use :( 

Best solution

March 6, 2012 6:47:28 PM
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Then use this combo as it isn't a shellshocker, just a regular DIY combo:

A4-3300/HD6410D/4GB/500GB SuperCombo

Then add in a dvd drive for cheap (i doubt they are burning dvd's)

SAMSUNG Black 16X DVD-ROM 40X CD-ROM SATA DVD-ROM Drive

TOTAL: $269.98 (shipping not included)

This will give them better integrated graphics for a basic desktop computer and will more than suffice for what they need.
March 6, 2012 6:58:53 PM

Pezcore27 said:
Then use this combo as it isn't a shellshocker, just a regular DIY combo:

A4-3300/HD6410D/4GB/500GB SuperCombo

Then add in a dvd drive for cheap (i doubt they are burning dvd's)

SAMSUNG Black 16X DVD-ROM 40X CD-ROM SATA DVD-ROM Drive

TOTAL: $269.98 (shipping not included)

This will give them better integrated graphics for a basic desktop computer and will more than suffice for what they need.


I will need to look at the performance of AMDs "APU"s versus Intels Sandy Bridge architecture.
Because even though the 500gb HDD is nice, it is uneeded and will go wasted. The current system I have laidout is a small margin cheaper.
March 6, 2012 7:01:33 PM

For this low of a budget and the basic functions the computer will be performing (i.e. nothing strenuous or taxing on either the processor or graphics) you will not see any real difference from using an APU.

EDIT: Since you would rather have the Sandy Bridge Architecture and a SSD, I have a new build for you:

CASE: Rosewill R218-P-BK Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

PSU: CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

CPU: Intel Celeron G530 Sandy Bridge 2.4GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor

MOBO: ASRock H61M-VS LGA 1155 Intel H61 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Essentials 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

OPTICAL: SAMSUNG Black 16X DVD-ROM 40X CD-ROM SATA DVD-ROM Drive

SSD: Mushkin Enhanced Chronos MKNSSDCR60GB 2.5" 60GB SATA III Asynchronous MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

TOTAL: $296.33 (shipping and MIR not included)

This gives you a better capacity SSD and the G530 Sandy Bridge Processor and a better PSU.
March 6, 2012 7:17:15 PM

Pezcore27 said:
For this low of a budget and the basic functions the computer will be performing (i.e. nothing strenuous or taxing on either the processor or graphics) you will not see any real difference from using an APU.

EDIT: Since you would rather have the Sandy Bridge Architecture and a SSD, I have a new build for you:

CASE: Rosewill R218-P-BK Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

PSU: CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

CPU: Intel Celeron G530 Sandy Bridge 2.4GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor

MOBO: ASRock H61M-VS LGA 1155 Intel H61 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard

RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Essentials 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10666) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

OPTICAL: SAMSUNG Black 16X DVD-ROM 40X CD-ROM SATA DVD-ROM Drive

SSD: Mushkin Enhanced Chronos MKNSSDCR60GB 2.5" 60GB SATA III Asynchronous MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

TOTAL: $296.33 (shipping and MIR not included)

This gives you a better capacity SSD and the G530 Sandy Bridge Processor and a better PSU.


I'm not sure why having a larger capacity drive keeps getting suggested. Windows 7 requires 20gb space for a 64bit install, and I mean, literately nothing outside of the OS is going to be installed on this PC.
I appreciate your time, Im going to select your AMD suggesting as best answer because it helps with another build for my mother actually (She needs the extra HDD space unlike my grandparents). So you have helped me kill 2 birds with one stone :) 
March 6, 2012 7:20:18 PM

Best answer selected by sazyario.
March 6, 2012 7:36:39 PM

sazyario said:
I'm not sure why having a larger capacity drive keeps getting suggested. Windows 7 requires 20gb space for a 64bit install, and I mean, literately nothing outside of the OS is going to be installed on this PC.
I appreciate your time, Im going to select your AMD suggesting as best answer because it helps with another build for my mother actually (She needs the extra HDD space unlike my grandparents). So you have helped me kill 2 birds with one stone :) 

NP, glad I could help. Generally you want to have, at very min, 15% of your HD left. If they were to save any pictures, files, etc. that they might recieve or want to keep for a bit, that 30gb SSD would fill faster than you think. The larger drive I suggested was more of a cushion and gave them a little room to spare.

I am actually considering suggesting that latest build with the 60gb SSD to my aunt who is looking for a general use computer for the same purposes you listed.
March 6, 2012 7:48:04 PM

Pezcore27 said:
NP, glad I could help. Generally you want to have, at very min, 15% of your HD left. If they were to save any pictures, files, etc. that they might recieve or want to keep for a bit, that 30gb SSD would fill faster than you think. The larger drive I suggested was more of a cushion and gave them a little room to spare.

I am actually considering suggesting that latest build with the 60gb SSD to my aunt who is looking for a general use computer for the same purposes you listed.


Do you feel confident in relying on the PSU in that Rosewill case for my grandparents use?
I think I will still stick with the 30gb SSD.
We both know that Win7 requires 20gb, but it doesnt actually use that much on initial install. So 1/3 of the SSD being free I hope is enough for them, if not I will just reinstall Win7 and only install service packs as they are finalized and turn Windows Updates off.

They have an 80gb p.o.s. hdd in their current PC, worse comes to worse I will have to install an IDE card somehow and use that, or put it in an enclosure and have Windows default to install and download everything on it.
March 6, 2012 7:54:25 PM

The rosewill PSU isn't the best quality, but from the reviews on that case it seems hit or miss. For the little to no power draw you will be needing for this, I might actually suggest something like this to replace it if you are seriously questioning that PSU.

CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2) 430W ATX12V v2.3 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

That one is deffinately a good PSU and typically has either a promo code or a MIR to bring it down to around $25-30

You can also catch this one on sale sometimes too for around $35

Antec EarthWatts Green EA-380D Green 380W Continuous power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

It is typically around the same price as the Corsair and will provide you with more than enough power.
March 7, 2012 11:45:32 AM

sazyario said:
Windows 7 only requires 20gb for an install.
Which is all they will need.
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/products/sy...

Also, the prices of SSDs are MUCH cheaper than traditional hard drives. If traditional hdds werent at inflated prices Id spend approximately the same price on one of those instead.

Are you sure H61 boards don't have integrated video? The CPU has the chip, and the chipset on the board enables it if I think correctly.

The 20 GB does not include the swap file, nor any additional applications (browsers, word processors, etc) nor does it account for temp files. As a general rule the performance of a storage device decreases when you utilize over 50% of available storage.

I don't see how $50.00 for 30 GB is cheaper than a traditional HDD on a per GB basis.

I looked at the link you provided for the motherboard, and in the specifications, it said no onboard graphics chipset. You are correct in that it WILL let you use the graphics capabilities of the I-series CPUs that DO include graphics..
!