A new computer - for my brother

I'm helping my 10 y/o brother upgrade his computer.
The choice for me is either AMD or Intel (whatever he gets... it'll be much better than he has now, obviously).

Anyway, here are the main components being upgraded (I have speakers but I may upgrade them for him down the road... but until then his current ones are fine. I also have a 1GB of 2700 ram to give to him if I go with an AMD-based system).

Here's the AMD option:
Asus A7N8X-DX Nforce2 (195$ - Canadian)
2800+ Barton (258$)
ATI Radeon 9500 Pro (305$ - or should I go with a 9700 Non-Pro... what's better?)
Antec Lanboy Case w/350 Smart Blue PSU (140$ - will this PSU be sufficient for this computer; btw he has no peripherals like printers, etc)

Intel option:
2.4GHZ w/ 800MHZ FSB (278$)
Asus P4P800-DX (205$)
Corsair XMS 512MB 3500 (238$ - will this be a good enough amount? Or how about Kingston Hyper X 512MB 3500 for 199$?)

Finally, if I were to say buy him speakers some time I'd certainly buy him a budget set because I don't want a home theatre-like environment in his room.

Which one is better?
Logitech Z-640 (90$) or Creative Inspire 6.1 6600 (109$)

Bear in mind this a budget system and I don't mind spending this all on him but, naturally, the AMD set-up is cheaper but I want to know if the Intel solution would justify the extra performance that would last around 2 years. Also, this may not happen until September… but if does do you think hardware like 3000+ - 3200+, nForce 2 Ultra, P4 2.8GHZ, etc will be at a more affordable price due to the release of the newer CPUs and motherboards? How’s the concept build so far? Remember this is a budget computer not some rig meant for a haughty punk with rich parents to brag about (only if). I am appreciative for any forthcoming advice.

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by kremlin456 on 06/16/03 10:20 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
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  1. Hi!

    I would go with the AMD solution, and buy a barton 2500+ (very easy to OC) and spend the rest of the money on a real 9700pro!

    Also if you go with the AMD solution you will have the NForce APU soundsystem, which is better than a real AUDIGY2 (atleast when it comes to CPU tilization) see this THG articel for further info: http://www6.tomshardware.com/game/20030405/index.html
    With the Intelsolution you'll have to buy an expensive soundcard to match the Nforce APU. OBS that not all the Nforce2 mobos has APU. Only those with southbridge MCP-T has that. Like the ASUS A7N8X-DX :smile:

    I think that the Antec PSU will be sufficient enough.

    Now generally I think that for a gamer a real good Videocard is better than spending the money on a faster CPU. I know that THG has written about this a couple of times in the past. If you can't afford the 9700PRO go for the 9700 nonpro.




    PS check this post for further thoughts
  2. if you want a long upgrade path get the intel. Otherwise get AMD - just know it'll be entirely obsolete in oh 3 months.
    Intel option:
    2.4GHZ w/ 800MHZ FSB (278$)
    Asus P4P800-DX (205$)
    maybe get pc3200 crucial. Crucial seems to be the best bang for your buck if you're not overclocking. and you will have a pretty sweet upgrade path with serial ata hard drives, up to 3.4ghz prescott, and enough Room for RAM upgrade to last you for awhile. 512MB (2x 256MB and you should run it in dual channel mode) of RAM will be plenty. You should order RAM like now because prices are rising again.

    thats what i would get .. with AMd you are looking at a screatching halt of only getting up to 3200+ which is comparible to your intel 2.4ghz almost lol!

    i don't know much about speakers so ... good luck! :) btw i have the asus board you picked - awsome board.

    "Bread makes me poop!" - Special Ed

    <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?id=9933" target="_new"> My Rig </A>
  3. see for yourself,

    <A HREF="http://www17.tomshardware.com/cpu/20030521/800fsb-09.html#opengl_benchmarks" target="_new">http://www17.tomshardware.com/cpu/20030521/800fsb-09.html#opengl_benchmarks</A>

    "Bread makes me poop!" - Special Ed

    <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?id=9933" target="_new"> My Rig </A>
  4. For gaming I would go with another 512 of ram. On the Intel side. If you over clock the 2.4c is one fast chip for OCing. You wait till Oct 26th big price drop for Intel.
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