Building a system- thoughts?

If this is in the wrong board, let me know. I don't see a board this post could easily fit into.

I'm going to buy a computer with my tax returns. I've looked into some options, and I think I've pretty much decided on building a computer, or geting computer built.
The limit for my system is $1000 for everything. That doesn't sound like much to me, considering all the things I WANT, but I think I've got something worked out.
I've been talking to a friend of a guy I met in the IRC channel, Thomas Soderstrom. I can't really argue with what he's told me.
This is the part where I see if I need to know anything I haven't learned on my own.
The main focus of my machine is graphics. I'm going to carve my career out of graphic and web design when I get out of college, so I need something that will let me grow.
The story so far follows as such:

ABIT nForce2 Ultra 400 Chipset Motherboard for AMD Socket A CPU, Model "NF7-S V2" -RETAIL
AMD Athlon XP 2500+ "Barton", 333 FSB, 512K Cache Processor - Retail
Geil Value Series 184 Pin 512MB DDR PC-3200
Western Digital Special Edition 80GB 7200RPM IDE Hard Drive, Model WD800JB, OEM Drive Only
SAPPHIRE RADEON 9600XT Video Card, 128MB DDR, 128-bit, DVI/TV-Out, 8X AGP -BULK
SONY Beige 52x32x52 IDE Internal CD-RW Drive, Model CRX230E, OEM
SAMSUNG SFD321B/LEB 1.44MB 3.5inch Floppy Disk Drive, OEM Driver Only
Fortron FSP350-60PN 350W ATX12V Power Supply with 120mm Fan, P4 and AMD ready - Retail

Comes to $569.73 as the prices stand
Any thoughts?
Well I've got some questions, if you please. First of all, is there anything I need, such as fans and cables? I'm assuming so, but I don't know what all I do need. I've been told I can overclock the 2500+ to 3200+
Will any of these components conflict?

About the operating system, I've noticed there are two versions of Windows XP listed at one for $61, the other for some $136. Can someone tell me what the 'full version' for $136 has that the $61 copy doesn't? I understand that by buying oem I'm losing tech support.

I don't think I'm forgetting anything. I'm also considering getting Microsoft Office 2003 Basic, which runs at $162 at

--- Your friendly neighborhood MechWarrior.
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More about building system thoughts
  1. Well just y'know FYI, and I'm not sure if it helps much, but... a display "might" prove a tad useful for you, and a good one at that.

    The Sony drive sounds okay if you're not going to use it much, but I would at least get one that can read DVDs, or perhaps one that can also write to DVD discs.

    Do not spit.
  2. Is that a crashman approved system? The xp pro edition is more stable, has a few more options and requires less personal permision from Big Bill. If you are not going to be changing parts a lot, it may not be worth the added investment. A slight word of caution from someone who is running an xp2500+ at xp3200+ speeds. My system is 100% stable, as far as I know. Yours will be as well. Just remember to back up all important stuff, just in case.
  3. What are you going to put all those parts in?
  4. There is ALWAYS small parts to purchase like:

    Case Fans
    Power cables
    IDE Cables
    CPU Shim (optional and recomended for heavy HSF)

    If you are going to OC that pig then you will need:

    Better CPU HSF
    Temp monitor kit (optional for there are software solutions now)

    As for your OS choice, ALWAYS GET THE FULL VERSION!!!!!! This way you can achieve a clean install of your os and not have conflicting dlls lingering around. Just get the XP pro full version. This is my personal preference but if you will up the system clock to 200 then I would get pc3500 ram ti give yourself some room for your ram.

    Barton 2500+ @ 2200mhz (10x220 vcore @ 1.8)
    Asus A7N8X Dlx 440 FSB
    1gb Geil GD pc3500 Dual Channel (2-3-3-6)
    Segata 80gb SATA 8.5ms seek
    ATI Radeon 9800 Pro(420/720)
  5. Great looking system. Pick up a case. I'm sure Thomas will recomend a good one.
  6. >The xp pro edition is more stable

    What a load of bull.

    >has a few more options

    Mainly supporting dual cpu (which he doesnt need), connecting to a domain controller (which he most likely doesnt need at home). The other differences are trivial (like "remote desktop"). Any other options that might have been left of "XP Home" surely can be added through some freeware tools.

    I see no reason to pay extra for XP Pro, other than that it may sound 'cooler', geekish or more professional to you. Be smart, get XP home. MS is rich enough as it is.

    = The views stated herein are my personal views, and not necessarily the views of my wife. =
  7. Nope
    Case fans may not be needed, I set up a similar system using the huge 120mm PSU fan to draw heat off the CPU
    IDE cables are included with the motherboard
    CPU shim is not required
    Power cable included with power supply.

    So he already has everything he, at a minimum, needs.

    <font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
    <font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
  8. Get the OEM version of Windows. It's cheaper and does everything the other versions do. It requires you purchase some parts, but you're already purchasing a lot of parts.

    <font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
    <font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
  9. I might be biting off a bit more than i can chew, but if you want a system that will have a bit more umpf for the long run i'd probably go Pentium4. Now i love my AMD rig and i won't go against it, but since you do have a grand here.. you could shell out some extra cash on a higher clocked pentium system and still oc.
    I don't think HT and 800 fsb is anything special yet, but HT could prove really helpfull in graphic design when they decide to code for it.

    <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>
    Figured i'd do it too..reality my ass.
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