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Suggestions for complete rebuild of older desktop?

Last response: in Systems
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October 8, 2012 5:18:32 PM

Hi, i have 2 dell desktops, theyboth work, and were mid-high end when they were new. They have a single core athlon 64 processor, i forget which socket, 512mb of pc2-4200u RAM, not sure if that is ddr or ddr2, 1 PCI-e x8, 1 PCI-e x1, and 2 PCI slots. It has decent cooling, windows xp pro, Sata, 80gb hdd, 300W PSU, and a card reader.

I knwo it isnt much now, but i think for 1-150$, i could get a slightly more powerful PSU, refurbished athlon 64 x2 (if they use the same socket) mid range video card, and maybe upgrade to 3-4 gb RAM, and add a wireless networking card.

There are a couple issues i have been having, mostly with finding out what the specifics of all the parts are currently, and connecting to the internet. I use an ethernet cord to hook the computer up to my router, and the computer says that it is connected to the internet, but regardless of the browser i use, none can load any pages, i am not sure wether it is my networking chip on teh motherboard, or drivers trhat may be missing, both of teh computers have this same problem, but they worked fine at the library i bought them from. i cant download new drivers because i cant get on the internet to download them, and they didnt come with the disks.

I think if i can fix the internet problem, and get some upgrades to make the computer run light games, like minecraft or just cause 2, even at low settings, i think i can sell them for a decent price, spend 15, sell for 200, the 300$ laptop i bought last summer new has less gaming performance than my grandparents dektop from 2006 with a low end video card and low end athlon 64 x2, it played minecraft at about 100fps, my laptop plays at 20, with a pentium p6100 2ghz, 3gb ddr3, and integrated graphics.

i think with wireless and teh card reader and some upgrades, 200$ for the desktop would be a steal for most people, especially that just want a everyday basic work station or office computer.

can anyone help me figure out what is wrong with the computer and what upgrades i can make to the RAM and CPU?
October 8, 2012 5:26:06 PM

figured out the ram is 533 ddr2, high dencity with chips only on one side, is it possible to use 667 or 800 single sided ram?
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October 8, 2012 6:03:33 PM

I have an Athlon 64 X2 4600+, and it is still able to play some modern games with an upgraded graphics card.

The internet problem it sounds like is a network problem. An area which is not exactly my expertise. You might try to install the chipset drivers.

Unless you can pull a profit from the builds for sure though, it might not be worth it.
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October 8, 2012 7:23:29 PM

i was going to buy a 4000+ for it, its the best athlon 64 newegg has in stock, my grandparents computer has a 4200+ i think. most any woudl be better than the one that is in it at the moment but im not sure if it used a 939 or a AM2 socket, im guessing an AM2.

the problem is that i cant download any drivers because i cant get onto the internet to get them, and dell wont help me unless i pay for past-life warrantee service. which i dont want to do.

and i think i will get about 50-80$ profit off each if i rebuild them, the trade/sell/buy catalog in my area has lots of older computers with far lower specs (basicly useless other than checking your email and typing word documents, with like 512mb ram, pentium 4, no video card, etc) selling for around 100-150$ and some with similar specs to what im planning for around 300-350.

i was thinking of a GT 430 video card, athlon 64 4000+, 2-3gb RAM (probably 533 if it cant use 667 or 800) and possibly a wireless networking card to make it more desirable, no one likes having ethernet cords running all over their house. i would buy one for about 200-250$ if i needed a computer.
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October 8, 2012 7:44:48 PM

It sounds like a good idea, but in your listing you are going to want to list what it is able to do with that GT430. Generally people will pay more for Nvidia parts on CL, so the GT430 is a good choice to use.

Advertise it two ways.

Have one way be like "If you just need a basic computer, this is perfect for you. This computer can do basic tasks like Microsoft Word and Outlook. Nice cheap computer for the average user"

But you are also going to want to advertise it as an entry level gaming machine. When you get the internet to work, download some free popular games (League of Legends) and try to play it on there and observe the detail and fps if it will play. I played LoL on medium/high on my 4600+ with an 8800GT. Now it has an 8600GT and works well as well.
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October 8, 2012 8:46:16 PM

yea, i have had many advertisments that i put up in my area and some have had good luck and some havent. i would probably try a coupel games on it liek minecraft, since it doesnt take much storage space and i can play it and then delete afterwards since you need to be logged in to play. i think one of my friends might buy one, im not sure though, as he is saving for a new car right now. im considering keeping oen for myself, as it has a basic version of adobe photoshop already installed, the 100$ one instead of the full 300$ software. i might sell that one and use it as a feature to put the price up some and make a little extra profit, maybe like 20$ extra or something.

Also i bought the computers extremely cheap from the library, as they just really wanted to clear out the old desktops since people just bring in their own computers/tablets/etc. so i basicly got them for labor, cleaning out and prepping some of the others for selling andand replacing the drained CMOS batteries in like 12 of them, which took far longer than i had anticipated. they offered to trade the two for the labor since they just had to get rid of them.

thats why i can sell them for so cheap compared to if i bought them for more. this way i am only marking them up from the parts cost.
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October 9, 2012 7:12:56 PM

so do you know if i could use 667 ddr2 or 800 ddr2 instead of the original 533 ddr2?
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October 9, 2012 7:48:19 PM

Some manufacturer boards are iffy with using different speed RAM. I would stick with the stock, as you would be sure that it works.
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October 9, 2012 9:45:26 PM

yea probably a good idea, would have been nice to get at least 667 ram, i think 2-3 gigs of that would do well for the speed of the system.
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October 9, 2012 10:26:48 PM

Why not experiment and make a crazy mod style PC i.e mineral oil cooling
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October 9, 2012 10:52:36 PM

that would be cool and i could probably do something liek that case modding is fun to do and looks awesome afterwards, but i would still want to fix the internet connectivity problem first haha
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