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Need advice building new PC

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August 25, 2003 3:30:01 AM

Hi folks, first time poster here. I'm buying a new PC for the first time in 6 years; my old P2 333MHz finally gave up the ghost on me. I've sort of kept up with the times, but I really don't know the technical things that I should be looking for, and I thought that you folks were the perfect people to ask. Please keep in mind that I'm a college student and that my budget is limited to around $1500-1800 Canadian (including tax and shipping). I want the best value for my dollar so I chose to go with AMD. Here's what I've got so far:

AMD 2800 XP Barton 333 MHz Core - Retail box - $279.99
ThermalTake Volcano 7+ Variable Fan Speed Copper - $59.99
Asus A7N8X Deluxe - NForce2-8x AGP DDR-400 Serial ATA - $189.99
512 MB DDR PC-3200 (400 MHz) Lifetime warranty - $139.99
Seagate 120 GB Barracuda V 7200 RPM Serial ATA 8 MB - $224.99
MSI GeForce 4 Ti4600 128 MB DDR - Retail Box - $425.99

I already have a mid tower with a 400W power supply and a floppy disk that I can use as well as a LG 48x24x48 speed CD/RW and a Sony DVD-ROM that I bought a year or so ago and put into my old computer, so I can save some money that way. I've also got copies of WinXP and all the software I need, so no further expenses will be occurred there.

Some questions that I have that I can't find the answers to on the net: is it worth pay the extra $20-30 for dual channel RAM? What does dual channel RAM do? Is it worth going for 1 GB of RAM? This machine will mainly be used for schoolwork - I'm a biophysics major and do some pretty heavy statistics and physics courses and use Maple5 and similar programs quite a lot, so computing power is nice to have. Also, I enjoy gaming - Is the Ti4600 a good card that will last me a while? I like Unreal Tournament, EverQuest, and plan on playing Worlds of Warcraft when it's released.

Any input / opinions / suggestions would be highly appreciated!

More about : advice building

August 25, 2003 3:35:26 AM

Looks good to me. Have you checked Intel? I do not have Canadian prices P4 2.4C $170 Abit IS7 $108 HyperX PC3500 $140. You can OC the Cpu to 3.0 Ghz with stock Hsf.
August 25, 2003 3:53:45 AM

$400 dolllars sounds MUCH TOO STEEP for a GeForce 4 Ti4600. You can get a Radeon 9800 Pro for that amount or a GeForce FX 5900 non-ultra. Since you mentioned that you wanted the best bang for buck, I would suggest purchasing a GeForce 4 Ti 4200 64MB for only $80 US at <A HREF="http://www.pricewatch.com" target="_new">http://www.pricewatch.com&lt;/A> which will peform about 80% the same speed as the Ti4600 at a fraction of the cost. How close is a Canadian dollar worth to a US dollar, about 2/3 or something like that?

My OS features preemptive multitasking, a fully interactive command line, & support for 640K of RAM!<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by UFO_WARVIPER on 08/25/03 00:02 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
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August 25, 2003 3:59:00 AM

The list you provided comes out to $1321 CAN ($937 US). Now let's see:

-P4 2.6C Retail Box - $211
-Abit IS7 Retail Box - $104
-KINGSTON HyperX 512MB (2x256MB) PC3200 Dual Channel - $127
-MSI GeForce 4 Ti4600 128 MB DDR - Retail Box - $300 (you can go with Radeon 9800 for this price but if you want Ti4600 is fine)
-Seagate 120 GB Barracuda V 7200 RPM Serial ATA 8 MB - $120

You're not gonna need the after market HSF since the stock Intel HSF is very good even if you're gonna OC.

Total = $862 US = $1215 CAN

Now this system will offer much better performance than the system you listed and do it for less. For $79 CAN more you can go with the 2.8C and it still comes out to less than the system you posted.



_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
P4 2.4C @ 3.0GHz 1.525V Stock HSF
Abit IS7 BIOS v1.3 GAT Auto
Corsair XMS 512MB TwinX3200C2 2-3-3-6
GeForce4 Ti4200 AGP8X 128MB
Seagate Barracuda 80GB SATA
August 25, 2003 4:02:47 AM

Now thats one heck of a puter you put together for him.
August 25, 2003 4:33:24 AM

Thanks for some great replies!

Is the Radeon 9800 a better video card than the GeForce Ti4600?

Also, no one has yet answered my question about whether or not it is worthwhile to go with dual channel RAM or just regular RAM.

Thanks again guys, you're a great help!

PS - Canadian dollar is about $0.71 US right now.
August 25, 2003 6:16:25 AM

Yes the Radeon 9800 is better than the Ti4600 specially since it seems like you're going to pay the same price for a Ti4600 as you would for the 9800.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
P4 2.4C @ 3.0GHz 1.525V Stock HSF
Abit IS7 BIOS v1.3 GAT Auto
Corsair XMS 512MB TwinX3200C2 2-3-3-6
GeForce4 Ti4200 AGP8X 128MB
Seagate Barracuda 80GB SATA
August 25, 2003 6:31:41 AM

The Radeon isn't just better it's about 40% better. I'm Canadian as well, and let me tell you your prices are way high. If you live in the west check out anitec.ca. It is also OK to ask for good shops in your area.
August 25, 2003 11:15:49 AM

Go read my post in the MOBO & Chip set Forum titled "Abit IS7 and Dual channel". That will answer your questions about the RAM & then some.

LOL I don't want to cut & paste & to lazy to rewrite it again.

Good Luck!

Well, I didn't think that was gonna happen!!!
August 25, 2003 12:11:15 PM

If i where buying a computer on that budget i would seriously consider a xp2400 on a motherboard that would handle the higher ffont side bus and pc2700 ram.You will set up mobo , cpu and ram quite cheaply. Also you can overclock a bit quite safley. This will cost a lot less than an intel or the one you have mentioned with only a slight performance decrease. The reason, spend the saved money on a good harddrive setup, raid or serial raid, a decent video card, go the new breeds fx 5600, 9600pro and up,with dual monitor support. For your work i would consider a dual monitor setup. Can get nice LCD monitors at reasonable prices (check Response time for gaming though, want 16ms). Dont skimp on your system for the sake of a slight increase in processing power!

If he doesn't die, he'll get help!!!
August 25, 2003 1:15:03 PM

I here what your saying. Been there, done that. You can save a few $$$, not many though, at least with ASUS. The 2400 can't keep up with the 2500 because of the faster FSB & cashe. The OC's the 2500 gets is icing on the cake.

I have a A7V8X with all the goodies, a 2400 & 2 x 256 Hyper X 2700 in a box that I took out of my case. I ran it for 3 months. Everything else in the case stayed the same. TI4600, WD 80 gig JB I think that's enough to compare. I'm a gamer so that's what I use my machine for. I got 12200 3Dmarks 2001

Then I put in the A7N8X deluxe, 2500 & 2 x 256 Hyper X 3200. Got 13100 3Dmarks at stk. multiplier & 13900 at 12.5 Multiplier. That's a lot of gain for a little difference in $$$. I haven't quite got over the 14000 barrier, but I'm still paying. Oh, now I'm running a gig of Hyper X 3200. Trying something all the time.

I have built the A7N8X Deluxe in RAID 0 for video editing for my cousin. Same set up as above with 2 x WD 120 gig JB's & a TI4200 & a gig of Hyper X 3200. That thing rips video great. For gaming I do, RAID really gives me nothing.

Well, I didn't think that was gonna happen!!!
August 25, 2003 2:05:56 PM

Yea your right its hard to go past the 2.5 gig xp at 333 fsb, even the 2.6 has dropped significantly since i last looked. I don't know why anyone would pay twice as much for an intel unless ya were a keen overclocker. I just put a xp2400 together but i used a second hand Asus a7v266-e mobo i got for $23US and some 2100 ram. Ended up costing me $120 US, only had 256ram but. So i chuck a cheap 5600 on and i got me some serious gaming grunt real cheap. Gotta throw another 256 ram on but. Oh also 50 bucks on a 7200 40gig. Me play Stalker and Doom and all now!!!

If he doesn't die, he'll get help!!!
August 25, 2003 3:49:44 PM

I love it how AMD fanboys think there is only a "slight" increase in performance between the 2.4C and xp2400+.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
P4 2.4C @ 3.0GHz 1.525V Stock HSF
Abit IS7 BIOS v1.3 GAT Auto
Corsair XMS 512MB TwinX3200C2 2-3-3-6
GeForce4 Ti4200 AGP8X 128MB
Seagate Barracuda 80GB SATA
August 25, 2003 5:09:03 PM

That's a cost effective way to go for sure. I've put a couple of those together as well, mostly helping out friends.

Nothing wrong with that either.

Well, I didn't think that was gonna happen!!!
August 25, 2003 7:42:03 PM

Here we go, another intel fan girl. The only reason intels chips are faster is because AMD have over rated their chips to get the marketing edge, compare clock speeds fool. We all know a 2.4 533 intel is the same as a 2.8 gig AMD. And generally the only reason intel have a huge fsb is because of the chips reliance on increased clock speed. So great intel are in the lead in the big budget cards, which you obviously cant afford by the looks of your system. The xp1700 of intel, lol. So get a grip, preferably off your old fella and come to the realisation that in twelve months or probably less we are all going to look back and see that the difference was small.

ROASTED!!!

If he doesn't die, he'll get help!!!<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by rramjet on 08/25/03 03:44 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
August 25, 2003 11:41:34 PM

Quote:
compare clock speeds fool

No, do not compare clock speeds. If you are intelligent, you compare prices and performance. Clock speed does not matter. IPC does not matter. Performance and price are what matter.

Comparing clockspeeds would result in the classic AMD-fanboy argument "AMD ownz Intel cause their 2 GHz is faster than Intel's 2 GHz."
August 26, 2003 6:26:31 AM

This was a lovely thread on how to distribute funds on a budget system, until a couple of angry hungry little intel fanboys came along. As Mr intelligent has stated price and performance are what matters, so im sure he has a AMD xp2500 or 2600. All i can say to these intelliots is stop starving yourselves and get some food, it will make you feel a whole lot better about your overrrated underperforming overclocked piece of intel crap. See Intels chips went up the creek as soon as AMD stopped making them.

If he doesn't die, he'll get help!!!
August 26, 2003 7:46:02 AM

rramjet, read your own posts and see who the real fanboy is. Looks like AMD fanboys like yourself aren't taking Intel's dominance very well, stop worrying about it you'll get a heart attack.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
P4 2.4C @ 3.0GHz 1.525V Stock HSF
Abit IS7 BIOS v1.3 GAT Auto
Corsair XMS 512MB TwinX3200C2 2-3-3-6
GeForce4 Ti4200 AGP8X 128MB
Seagate Barracuda 80GB SATA
August 26, 2003 7:51:52 AM

The tears are flowing, hey your the cock who has their system at the bottom of their post. And ya calling me a fanboy. Tosser.

If he doesn't die, he'll get help!!!
August 26, 2003 7:44:13 PM

I agree that below 2600-level performance, AMD generally offers the better deal.

But I would take your posts a lot more seriously if you were not constantly trolling and posting AMD fanboy BS.

Posting one's computer specs in their signature is a common practice on most computer forums, and has nothing to do with being a fanboy. What makes someone a fanboy is flamebait stuff like

Quote:
your overrrated underperforming overclocked piece of intel crap. See Intels chips went up the creek as soon as AMD stopped making them.

You may want to get a new name if you want anyone to take you seriously on these boards again.
August 26, 2003 11:02:14 PM

Ohh yea, having my system specs in my sig on a computer forum makes me a fanboy. Judging by your language I'd say you have the intelect of a 12 year old. Then again maybe you are 12 years old.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
P4 2.4C @ 3.0GHz 1.525V Stock HSF
Abit IS7 BIOS v1.3 GAT Auto
Corsair XMS 512MB TwinX3200C2 2-3-3-6
GeForce4 Ti4200 AGP8X 128MB
Seagate Barracuda 80GB SATA
!