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Building A Cheap Comp looking for Help

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October 9, 2003 2:16:39 PM

I am trying to build a computer for a friend for around $350 and was wondering if any of you guys out there could help me out.

Mainly looking to buy these

CPU
Motherboard
Ram
Case with Powersupply
Video Card (if possible with such a low bugget)

Im looking to build as good of a computer as possible with this setup. We already have the rest from his old computer we just need the main box. He has a Video Card but its a 420 MX Gforce 4 and man it sux. He is going for a gaming computer and he readly doesn't care about how good it is in any other areas.

If any of you could help that would be really cool.

Frozen
Fallout
OUt


-------------------------------------------------
Remember what your fighting for, Remember why you even started fighting, and Remember who you are

More about : building cheap comp

October 9, 2003 2:43:08 PM

-Asus A7V8x ~$65
-Athlon xp 1700+ ~$50.00
-256 2100 ddr ~40-50
That leaves you with around $180 for case+psu and video card. You can buy a Geforce 4200 for ~$100-$120 and an ok case for $60-$80.

<font color=blue>
A woman driving is like a <font color=yellow> star </font color=yellow>in the sky, you can see her, but she can't see you.
</font color=blue><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by snorkius on 10/09/03 02:45 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
October 9, 2003 3:34:37 PM

Try getting a 2400 if you can, it around $74.
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October 9, 2003 3:38:55 PM

I backup Snorkius, but would reccomend the A7N8X-X (nforce2 400 non-ultra) instead of the A7V8X as it provides better performance and can be had for around the same price.

<A HREF="http://service.futuremark.com/compare?2k1=6752830" target="_new">Yay, I Finally broke the 12k barrier!!</A>
October 9, 2003 3:51:39 PM

Motherboard - MSI K7N2GL - 99.00
Processor - Athlon XP 1700+ - 42.00
Ram - Samsung 256MB PC2700 - 28.00
Hard Disk - WD ATA/100 40GB 2MB 7200RPM - 57.00
CD-RW - Lite-On 52x24x52x CD-RW - 46.00
Floppy - Teac 1.44 Floppy Drive - 12.00
Speakers - Juster 5d-107 7 PCS - 34.00
Case - Raidmax Model 208 10 Bay 350W PS - 43.00
Total - $361.00 - Total

The prices may have dropped since I built that one, but its close... If you have some of the parts already you could sub them in instead of what I Have above... if you can free up ~70$ you could get a GF3 TI-500 which is a quite nice video card in reality (It was the high end GF3 model, which means it bests most midrange gf4 and low end fx line cards that cost more.) Later "good" upgrades in order would be another 256mb stick of samsung pc2700 ram (dualddr mode), a larger hd, and a faster processor (2500?). The one thing that isn't on this quote is a fan, which I had several in stock of at the time ... I think they cost me 2$ each or something. Moderate quality with a damn large heat sink.

Shadus
October 9, 2003 4:27:21 PM

If you going to send money for Motherboard - MSI K7N2GL - 99.00, you should get DFI NFII ultra (NOT lanparty) instead. It basically got the same feature, dual DDR and even SATA, like the lanparty but costs alot less. You can find it at new egg.
October 9, 2003 6:29:26 PM

I just checked on that board, and remembered the reason I disqualified it and alot of cheaper boards like it -- No onboard graphics. All the boards I considered had to be 8xAGP, on board graphics, and also be known to be stable and not a POS.

Shadus
October 9, 2003 7:24:28 PM

Great recommendations here! I'd probably go this route:

CPU: AMD XP 1700+ Thoroughbred OEM $49 (free ship)
CPU Cooler: ~$5 (~$5 ship)
Motherboard: Biostar M7NCD $59 (free ship)
Ram: 256MB PC2700 ~$37 (~$4 ship)
<b>Edit: Case with Powersupply: ~$40 (~$15 ship)</b>
Video Card: ATi 9600 Pro 128MB ~$149 (free ship)

Total: $339 ($24 ship)

Vendor(s): NewEgg

Could go for the <i>Biostar M7NCD PRO</i> for $57 if ya don't mind Mail-in-rebates.

Room for tweaks also! ;) 

<b><font color=blue>Oh, I can shed light on that ...</font color=blue></b><P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Prof133 on 10/09/03 05:47 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
October 9, 2003 8:25:53 PM

I don't much like Biostar and a case + power for $25 is risky. If an A7N8X costs around the same as an A7V8X I'd definetly go for that.

<font color=blue>
A woman driving is like a <font color=yellow> star </font color=yellow>in the sky, you can see her, but she can't see you.
</font color=blue>
October 9, 2003 9:33:36 PM

I hear ya! :)  Normally Abit, Epox and Asus would be among the boards recommended but before I posted I did a check on the NewEgg feedback for the Biostar M7NCD / PRO models and many are very happy with their purchase. ;) 

<b><font color=blue>Oh, I can shed light on that ...</font color=blue></b>
October 9, 2003 9:45:48 PM

Quote:
power for $25 is risky

Could also devote some more dollars to make room for more options here.

<b><font color=blue>Oh, I can shed light on that ...</font color=blue></b>
October 9, 2003 10:02:55 PM

Depends on what he wants. For me a good case is much more important than FPS, so I would not recommend a 9600 pro over a GF 4200, it's not worth the price (If you only have ~350 to spend that is.)
I had a really shite case before and it's a real pain in the azz.

<font color=blue>
A woman driving is like a <font color=yellow> star </font color=yellow>in the sky, you can see her, but she can't see you.
</font color=blue>
October 9, 2003 10:52:34 PM

- Funny this should come up because my younger brother just installed a Tyan 9600 Pro 128MB (great graphics card BTW) on a system with a 1700+ (Palomino), 2 Hard drives and a CD Drive. Before installing the new graphics card I cautioned him that the Case/PS combo he had - cost about $30 - may not be enough for 9600. Well, he reported back to me that his system is completely stable. So, basically that was part of the spirit of my orginal post. But, I see what you're getting at.

- I sense there are some very experienced system builders here. Maybe they can recommend a good Case+PS for this build ...

<b><font color=blue>Oh, I can shed light on that ...</font color=blue></b>
October 10, 2003 3:02:58 AM

I think in your situation, you should go the refurb route on a couple of items. You'll need the better components for a good gaming system and there's no better way to get 'em. NewEgg is fantastic about replacement RMA, so it's really not a problem if you get a DOA product. I've only had it happen once. In fact, only once have I ever gotten less than the full-featured retail box with all the accessories. So that being said, here ya go:

Motherboard- MSI K7N2 Delta-ILSR (refurb) $69.00
Processor- AMD Athlon XP 1800+ Retail with HS/Fan $59.00
RAM- Geil 256MB PC3200 x 2 $96.00
Video Card- Chaintech A-GX20 TI-4200 64MB 8X (refurb) $70.50
Case- Maxtop **Cool Case** Mid-Tower PC Case w/ 350Watts PS $50.00

Total Price: $344.50

You'll get a full-featured board with nVidia nForce 2 and the Soundstorm audio set. You'll really appreciate having 512mb of memory instead of 256mb and you'll be able to run dual channel. You could save about 10 bucks on some PC2700 memory instead of PC3200, but PC3200 will be nice for overclocking with the XP CPU. This case is the one that I use, so I can personally vouch for it. If you're not afraid to spend a little more money for a lot more performance, get the Sapphire Atlantis ATI RADEON 9600 PRO 128MB 8X (refurb) instead of the Ti4200 video card. It'll ad $41.25, but it'll be worth it for gaming. Good luck and let us know how it goes.
-Brett

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by smitbret on 10/09/03 11:08 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
October 10, 2003 1:24:31 PM

I would argue that a geforce 3 ti500 is faster than a 4200-8x. Not positive, but based off computers i've fiddled with i'd say it is... secondly, the only real issue I have with the setup you list is the refurb stuff... computer refurb can be nasty nasty stuff depending on where the refurb came from, I bought about 5 refurb video cards and only one of them made it past a year (two developed ghosting, 1 got this white streaks to the right of anything dark on a white background... like a smear almost, 1 just flat died.) That was enough to convince me that refurb was ugly.

Shadus
October 10, 2003 2:52:11 PM

I agree. I've never had a dependable refurb purchase yet. If they last a year before problems set in it's only by pure luck.

<pre><A HREF="http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=20030905" target="_new"><font color=black>People don't understand how hard being a dark god can be. - Hastur</font color=black></A></pre><p>
October 10, 2003 3:02:55 PM

Whatever you decide to buy, I recommend buying from Monarch any day ( www.monarchcomputer.com )

They may not have the best prices anywhere, but they're not out to rip you off either and they're absolutely great to do business with!
October 10, 2003 4:47:57 PM

I've been getting refurbs from New Egg for a couple of years, mostly motherboards, but I've only ever had one DOA and the rest have been no problem at all, usually in their full retail box with all the accessories and manuals. I haven't bought a new motherboard in a long while. I can see the hesitance in getting a video card, however. If a refurb is too scary, then might I recommend the Chaintech A-GX20 TI-4200 64MB 8X, $94. The guy wants a gaming machine for $350, he's gonna either have to take chances or a performance hit. From my experience the refurb route has almost always paid off.
-Brett
October 10, 2003 5:53:33 PM

Like I said in my suggestions above, a GF3-TI500 is 70$ish. That's a hell of a good deal and it outperforms the 4200 in my experience.

Shadus
October 10, 2003 7:55:57 PM

Newegg is the place to shop unless you want the very rock bottom price, then you can order from 5-6 different vendors and save a few bones. I just built one like this

MSI K7N2 Delta
Generic PC2700 256 MB
Fortron Source 350W PSU
Junk Case from Aaronix
Athlon 1700+
40 Gig 7200 RPM Western Digital
& a couple of generic ball bearing case fans
for $227 using refurb on the motherboard (newegg) and various sellers. That would leave you room for a video card. I love my GF3 Ti200 (Gainward) running at over Ti500 speeds. This card will eventually get old, but for now it's pretty nice for $70

You do know about Pricewatch.com, right? And the reason everybody is directing you to NForce 2 boards and Thoroughbred B's is because you can overclock the hell out of them (typically). Sorry if I'm stating the obvious-don't mean to insult anybody
October 10, 2003 8:58:52 PM

I don't know whether or not the GF3-TI500 outperforms the Ti4200 at stock, but when you overclock the Ti4200 to Ti4600 speeds, you've got a whole different ballgame. I'm not a benchmark freak, but if you need solid numbers, the average Ti4200 outperforms the average GF3-Ti500 by about 2000 points in 3DMark 2001 (10369 vs. 8499). Had my overclocked Abit Siluro at 11554 without any remnants and it ran fine.
-Brettster
October 10, 2003 10:54:49 PM

You can get a good cheap refurbished motherboard from newegg for less than $50.00. I bought an Epox EP-8K9AI for $40 and free shipping. Went to Epox's website downloaded the drivers and manual. Worked out great.
October 10, 2003 11:00:32 PM

Doesn't the TI500 only have 64mb? I have a TI4200 and I'm very impressed with it, of course I did upgrade from a Gefore2 Ultra.
!