Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Athlon C, DDR, Alienware and My Hatred of Mankind

Last response: in CPUs
Share
March 2, 2001 6:30:33 PM

Oh good GOD. OK, we debated once upon a time the merits of my purchase (search for "lamer" if you really care to read). I bought a system w/ Athlon-C 1.2GHz 266FSB & 256MB DDRRAM from Alienware for about $2500. That was a month ago. I called today wondering where the f my computer was. It turns out that they had significant problems w/ the DDR chipsets' stability. They originally were marketing the ALI Magik but reportedly tested all the current DDR mobos. Anyhow, THEY HAVE DISCONTINUED THE LINE! As well as ANY 266FSB Athlons (they do have 200's). SOBs. So, they proposed "upgrading" me to a P4 1.3GHz for free (w/ 256 PC800 RDRAM) or they will split the difference on a P4 1.5GHz (I would have to up ~$150). Furthermore, they would expedite the system (5-7 days).

I would guess that the problem w/ the DDR system was in overclocking since no one (site-wise) has seemed to have any problem w/ the inherent stability of the DDR chipsets. Let me tell you, though, this doesn't bode well for AMD. Although the fact that they discontinued the 266FSB Athlons could be the center of concern and doesn't bode well either.

So, does anyone think I should actually go the route of the P4 1.5GHz or should I just "downgrade" to an Athlon SDR system and upgrade later on?

Lastly, this shows the pluses and minuses of OEMs. They make sure sh1t works but there's a delay associated with it.

Can I tell you how p1ssed off at AMD I am right now? They had my money and this is how it works out. (My lord, I'm starting to sound like Fugger...)

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 2, 2001 6:39:30 PM

Please forgive me if you can hear the laughing all the way from Wisconsin. I'm not laughing at you, I'm laughing at AMD.

Here is AMD's crowning achivement: The 266MHZ DDR SDRAM system. The system that will blow the P4 out of the water. The system that shows just how good AMD really is.

Really, I am trying to stop laughing. It's just too funny.

I wouldn't go with the P4 though. It's a hacked-up piece of questionable value. If it were a Northwood, it'd be a completely different story. But it isn't.

So I'd suggest either demanding a refund and getting a new system when all of the new .13micron chips hit the market, or go with the some other Athlon solution and demand some money back with it, since obviously those parts won't be worth as much as the system you ordered in the first place would be.

Heck, if it were me, I'd just get a refund and wait for better latest-and-greatest.

- Sanity is purely based on point-of-view.
March 2, 2001 6:44:50 PM

OMG!! heh just what we need more ammo =P

Good thing they didnt ship you a POS AMD lemon, im sure that would have pissed you off 10x more.

Go with the P3 1Ghz and geforce3, save yourself a grand. Its all in the video card and Geforce3 is about 30 days away.

P4 is about to change and current model is not the one you want, even tho it does perform well. but .13 version will be alot better.

Avoid AMD
Related resources
March 2, 2001 6:48:23 PM

tbfww -

Really sorry to hear that. You wouldn't believe how close I came to doing the same thing.

And, I don't know what I'd do at this point, given the options you listed.

I'm not sure this was AMD's fault, though - who was it had your money? Seems to me getting it back and starting over should be an option considered.


By the way, what got discontinued? Alienware's line, or the AMD 266FSB CPU's?


beans



<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by beans on 03/02/01 04:00 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 2, 2001 7:30:43 PM

I can't say that AMD itself discontinued the C, in fact the 200FSB seems alive (I won't say "well"). Alienware definitely discontinued the Athlon C 266FSB, as well as any AMD DDR system. I'd be interested to know if anyone got a DDR system from Micron and how it runs. It could just be that alienware, because they overclock their systems, couldn't get it to work up to their standard.

Here's the deal on getting a new computer. I can't wait much longer. My P2/333 w/ TNT (non-Ultra) is VERY long in the tooth. UT runs like a dog, even friggin' Gamespy takes about 5 minutes to write out to my HD. I've been chomping at the bit. Right now, I'm thinking I'll go w/ a 1.2 Gig Athlon 200FSB, 256MB PC133 RAM, Ultra card, yadda^3 and save the $500. I don't think the P4 is a good purchase right now. What blasts my balls is that I was waiting specifically for the system I bought. This is SO disappointing.

As for the pro-Intel folk, I don't blame you one bit for laughing. Feel free to say "I told you so." As someone said (Fugger?), I am VERY happy that Alienware didn't send me a POS DDR system that was unstable and not to their spec. I think it speaks volumes for them, especially considering they knew how ticked off people like me would be.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 2, 2001 8:20:18 PM

tfbww -

I agree on the POS DDR concept.

However, I would have been more impressed had they called you when they knew there was going to be a problem, rather than wait for you to call them. I suspect that had payment been due at time of shipment, they would have been motivated to do so.

And, overclock??!? My impression was that you bought an Athlon "C" to be run at 266, AMD specs. If they were planning to overclock a "B", and it wouldn't work, that's not AMD's fault.


But, now what? I think if you're making your living with this computer, that's one thing. If you're playing games, let the disappointment subside, then move on.


beans
March 3, 2001 5:07:34 AM

Lets make one thing crystal clear:

Did AMD discontinue the processor or could alienware just not supply you the hardware?

Is there any hardware problem?



"I think I brained my damage"
a b à CPUs
March 3, 2001 2:33:11 PM

You mean that for once the problem, isn't in a VIA chipset ... wow, I'm still under shock LOL
March 3, 2001 2:33:19 PM

AMD did not discontinue any of their 266 mHz FSB products. They have just been slightly (hehe) delayed and may be a little buggy (not anything more than what Intel has done, mind you intelophiles). Pricewatch still lists 4 seperate Athlons at 266 mHz FSB, at 1.0, 1.1, 1.13, 1.2 gHz. I think Alienware just discontinued taking orders for the DDR systems until all the kinks are worked out.
March 3, 2001 3:57:23 PM

Alienware has discontinued their AthlonC/DDR system. Nor are they using the C in a KT133A setup. So if they have any of the C's on hand, they aren't and won't be selling them anytime soon from the sound of it. There is some sort of hdwr problem, I just can't tell if its in the C or the DDR mobo's since I don't work there. I can only tell you what I heard.

And yes, I will get over this experience. BUT AMD has ticked me off. Wasn't it NOVEMBER when they announced DDR systems? And here we are in MARCH with nothing that a very reputable OEM will sell. It's like getting bad service in a restaurant. You're ticked off for a day or two and then it subsides but you sure as hell don't go back there.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 3, 2001 6:15:16 PM

tfbww -

Seems to me your OEM sold you something in February that THEY didn't have in March.

To be fair, if we're going to give them credit for not shipping you a POS DDR system, then AMD is due the same for not shipping POS Athlon-C's just to make a promised date.

I really hate to keep beating this drum, because I know you're ticked. I've been there and I don't want to make it worse for you. But, the problem in your face right now is whether or not to continue with your current OEM. I hope you will consider that decision with a clear mind.


The passage of time always seems to give us better computers for less money. I hope that's the way it works out for you.


beans
March 3, 2001 7:02:22 PM

where is their any information on faulty c athlons or bad ddr motherboards? I know some of the ddr boards don't perform all that great, but from what I gather this sounds more like alienware not being able to fill their orders.

"I think I brained my damage"
March 3, 2001 9:38:42 PM

Ugh. I'll say this slowly this time. They had the parts (the processors AND the mobos AND the DDRRAM) but could not get the stability they desired. I DON'T WORK THERE so I can't tell you what that means. They have a pretty damn good reputation so my first instinct is that aren't trying to screw the consumer. I don't know what other "information" I can give you other than that they gave me a $100+ discount on a different system. Not the act of someone who is just building them slowly. AND they pulled the systems off of their site. Micron, the only other DDR sys I know of, doesn't even sell the C's.

Second, there is a lot of proof that something went wrong, not just from one OEM. How long ago did they announce the C's? When did/will they become available? How long ago were DDR systems for AMDs announced? How many OEMs are selling them? These delays DO point to something.

Are you one of those anti-OEM zealots or just an anti-Intel zealot that doesn't want to paint a bad AMD story? Trust me, I was all for AMD until this incident. Price to performance only counts if I can GET a system.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
March 4, 2001 12:33:54 AM

I don't understand why you would purchase a system from Alienware. Yes, it is cool to be able to customize a box as much as Alienware lets you. However, waiting a MONTH for it to show up is simply ridiculous. If your box costs $2000 when you buy it, a month later (when you can actually use it) it is worth $1800. I was thinking of going with Alienware, but just before I submitted my order I saw how long it would take - no thanks!

Why not get an AMD system from Micron? You can have it in a week or two at the max.
March 4, 2001 12:49:50 AM

Tfbww, that's a real bummer. I was routing for you and looking forward to hearing about your great experiences with what sounded like my dream system.

Have you decided what you are going to do?

This is what I would probably do. (This is not advice just what I believe my thinking would be in your situation). I would now be leary of vendors advertising similar systems and would like to hear of personal experiences of other individuals before purchasing such a system. I might say to myself that 133 mhz, DDR systems are just not mature enough and turn to a more proven system, most likely a 1.2 ghz Athlon with a KT133a mobo. I might also say Geforce3 is coming very soon but I can't wait and buy just a usable graphics card for now and reserve my money for the GF3 later. I think I would also like to go with a local computer store, someplace where I can drop off my computer should I have problems. (I prefer depot service to on-site service simply because I would rather not wait at home all day for someone to arrive).

Such a system would be priced in the $1500-$1900 range depending on the trimmings. I would simply sit back and enjoy my purchase until I decided to upgrade again.

Good luck with what you decide.


<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by phsstpok on 03/03/01 09:52 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 4, 2001 1:31:14 PM

I would have thought the same thing until a friend of mine decided to rebuild his system. He used reputable dealers, like mwave, and when all was said and done, it took him over a month to get the parts together. He had things like a pre-fried mobo, the wrong HD, etc.

And as for anything dropping $200 in one month... that's a bit extreme. $100 I can see, maybe. Let's put it this way, nothing on Alienware has dropped $200 in the past month.

So, again, it depends on what you value most. Myself, I value my personal time more than the money I make (i.e. I work my ass off and make decent cash to enjoy my days off all the more). I had enough over the past month to do that it wasn't a big deal (trips, business, etc.). Now it's irritating.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
March 4, 2001 5:21:09 PM

Your points are well taken. Good luck in whatever you decide to do!
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
March 5, 2001 3:59:58 PM

AMD has not 'discontinued' the C Althlons. I've seen no mention of absolutely ANY problems with the CPU istelf on any of the myriad of reviews I've read. DDR is another story. Asus has appearantly had problems with it's DDR mobo and discontinued it, although that still maybe in the rumor stage. The ALi chipset has had some stability probs though (The Asus board uses the AMD 760 chipset.)

Frighteningly enough everyone is hoping that the slowly upcoming Via chipset will finaly realize the performance of DDR. As far as the wait for DDR, can you think of any new tech rollout that has been on time and bug free? It will take time, but I think that DDR is going to be the new standard by the end of the year.


The glass isn't half empty, it isn't half full. There just isn't enough in it.
March 5, 2001 5:48:59 PM

DDR may be a standard 10 months from now, as you say, but it is having some serious growing pains now. The point of this thread wasn't to predict the RDRAM vs. QUADRAM vs. DDRRAM battle. It was to say that DDR doesn't seem cut it today in any way, shape, or form.

I do NOT accept the "everyone else deos it" argument and frankly don't know why anyone would. I don't buy it for Clinton pardons and I don't buy it now. They didn't announce that it was going to "be available in Q1;" they said it was available in Q4 and, by extension, now. It "is" available but it most certainly isn't.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 5, 2001 6:07:14 PM

Here you go, the link to Asus forums.

Look at "10 most read posts"

Notice how all 10 posts are A7V and DDR chipset related 10 of 10. perfect score!

Enjoy your DDR chipset AMD, AHAHHAHAHAAHAHHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH, ha whew almost fell out of my chair.
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
March 6, 2001 9:39:46 AM

Did someone forget their meds this morning?

Sarcasm maybe the recourse of a weak mind,
but it can be funny as hell.
March 6, 2001 10:04:48 AM

Seems to me that you picked exactly the wrong time to try and buy a system. We've got two new platforms, both fairly immature, both not yet ramped up to full production, with first-run parts only just making it into the stream. OF COURSE you're going to have these sorts of problems. That's the price of being an early adopter - you get to be the crash-text dummy.

If you actually do a bit of research (trying to avoid the obvious marketing hype) you'll find that it's well known that DDR systems are still teething, the chipsets may have problems and the "C" CPUs and PC2100 DDR modules are hard to get hold of. You'd have to be INSANE to buy one now. In two months time it may very well be a different story - are you really in that much of a hurry?

You have to realise that there's a big difference between "available" and "actaully available" - this isn't just an AMD trick, Intel does it too. They say the parts are "available" when they're shipping engineering samples to developers (OK thats an exaggeration, but not by much).
March 6, 2001 12:31:31 PM

I certainly understood the risks. I knew full well that I'd be flashing my BIOS a couple times soon and that performance wouldn't live up to its full potential. BUT, this OEM got the engineering samples to work fine and not the production (at least that is what I've been told, so take it with a grain of salt).

Most reviews did say there were small problems. But pretty much every review said that there were no showstoppers. From hardocp to thg, they all thought that the DDR boards were stable (although the effectiveness of the DDR varied by board).

The availability "trick" is something that is NOT acceptable. AMD fans SLAM Intel for the 1.13gig "availability trick," and rightly so, but they have to realize that their beloved AMD seems to have done something similar here. And, trust me, I'm pulling for AMD here (50% market share for each is my ideal scenario) to a point.

What is good for the goose is good for the gander.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 6, 2001 2:16:40 PM

Okay, I actually emailed Alienware's sales department to ask them for more information about what's going on there. Here was their response:

----------
We had Engineering samples that worked great but as we were building systems we found out that they were not meeting our standards as far as the motherboards and the processor. We have had to much trouble with testing
DDR systems in production that we made the final decision to wait for a New Board to come out for DDR.


Thank you for your interest.
Sales@alienware.com
800-494-3382 Toll Free
305-259-4262 International
305-259-9874 Fax
----------

Maybe I should have directed the email to someone other than sales, as they responded with a lot of generality. Still, it seems pretty straight forward to me. They got engineering samples. The engineering samples performed well. So they started ramping up to deliver their DDR product. But the actual production hardware (their final statement leaves me to believe it was the motherboard specifically) wasn't the same quality as the engineering samples. It caused stability problems in the systems. Hence they had to cancel their line of DDR Athlon systems. And they didn't once mention overclocking. If it were just a matter of OCing, they'd have offered the product un-overclocked.

It sounds to me like the DDR motherboards are quirky at best. The engineering samples worked just peachy, but the production models don't. Obviously quality control isn't what it should be if it takes an OEM (and NOT the motherboard manufacturer) to figure this out.

So any site (such as THG) that reviewed a DDR system probably never ran into this insability because they were using engineering samples, not production models.

Is the fault ultimately AMD's? No one can say. Obviously the flaw is very new. It reminds me a lot of the MTH idiocy that Intel put people through.

In that, was the fault Intel's? No. The MTH worked. It was the memory bus on the motherboard itself that caused noise, killing the MTH. So really, it was the motherboard manfacturer's fault. But since the problem wasn't reproducable, all MTH's were open to recall because one couldn't determine if their system was vulnerable to the bug. And everyone blamed Intel for it. Maybe Intel should have made the MTH less sensitive to noise. Maybe the whole concept of the MTH was stupid. But the MTH itself worked. It was putting it on a poorly-designed motherboard that was the problem.

So is this AMD's fault? Chances are, no. But, chances are also high that AMD will get the blame for it because their product is the root that people associate to, just as Intel got the blame for the MTH problems.

Either way though, it remains pretty clear that if you want a T-Bird system with DDR SDRAM, you're going to have to wait if you want it to be stable. It sounds like this is true of both the 100 and 133MHz FSB systems.

And it only further proves why I think THG should do follow-up reviews on production models once they become available instead of testing engineering samples only and leaving us to hope that production models work as advertised.

- Sanity is purely based on point-of-view.
March 6, 2001 4:19:34 PM

Good post pheonix, thanks for looking into it.
Only takes a minute and you get an idea what the problem is.

But AMD lemmings would rather call me a liar and crap, than actually find out the truth.
March 6, 2001 4:35:57 PM

I just wish that companies would give an email address to their engineering department so that I could talk to the engineers instead of having to go through the sales department. I'm sure they would have given me a much more thorough answer.

Still, the answer that I got did paint a pretty clear picture of the problem.

I wonder if the VIA DDR chipsets for the P3 have these problems as well, or if it is only a specific DDR chipset that is faulty. It might be nice to know if ALL AMD DDR SDRAM systems are faulty, or just specific ones. And if Intel ones are also faulty, or not.

- Sanity is purely based on point-of-view.
March 6, 2001 7:40:40 PM

A couple thoughts (I feel like I'm the central character in Defending Your Life). You point out that they don't mention OC'ing. I think, in a sense, they <b>might</b> when they refer to "their standards." From what I hear, since I haven't gotten a rig yet, they do OC their systems. Just a thought.

Second, they claimed to me (over the phone) that they tried multiple DDR boards (their board was the ALI Magik). Don't know what was included in "multiple."

I'll keep all abreast as time goes on. I doubt this will be the end of it all.


-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 6, 2001 7:51:06 PM

If I remember correctly, Alienware will overclock a system if you ask them to. If you don't ask, they won't do it. The reason that it can take so long to get a system from them is because they actually test it thoroughly to make sure that it's stable. When overclocking, this can sometimes take time and effort, hence a longer delivery time than a standard system.

But they could easily just offer the systems with a special notice that they aren't overclockable if it was just that the motherboards didn't like being overclocked. I could be wrong, but you would think that if they already ordered parts, it would be better to sell them in this manner than to just be stuck shelving them.

So that indicates that the motherboard itself must be generally unstable, overclocked or not.

But yeah, it would be nice to know which of their motherboards were tested. Maybe I'll ask them. :) 

- Sanity is purely based on point-of-view.
March 6, 2001 10:47:59 PM

Hey, you decided to risk it. I didn't. I don't subscribe to version 1.0 and I don't spend thousands on tech that really hasn't hit the market.

Nonetheless, you should just build your own system. Just make sure that they are in stock. Sure, if you build enough machines you might have to get an exchange. It sure beats spending all that extra money though.

I bought a Dell a few years back and it took them 3 weeks to deliver. If I build a machine, it takes a week to get parts, and if something was to go wrong, it would take another week max to get replacements. That's still better than the above. I get to customize the box to the max.

NOW, if your time is worth more to you, then sure go and spend it on a good dealer like Alienware, but don't get so crazy when things don't go your way. Just get your money back and spend it when DDR has a couple new boards.

"I think I brained my damage"
March 7, 2001 1:08:53 PM

That doesn't make any sense at all. In fact, it is the exact opposite of what you're trying to say: I am paying a premium so I DEMAND better service. If this is too advanced a concept in economics for you how about an example more relevant to you: Do you always go with the absolute lowest price on Pricewatch no matter what? If not, why not.

-------------------------------------
Nature abhors a moron. -- HL Mencken
March 7, 2001 2:22:21 PM

You're just bitter. If you want to pay more to have someone build your machine then that's fine, but that just means you'll have paid them to save you time. You will recieve no better of a product than if you had built the machine yourself. That is assuming you can build the machine.

If you were expecting such fantastic service then that's fine too, but reality has to kick in. These are businesses you are dealing with and they have to make money. That is the point of their existance. Service isn't.

Just face it. You tried to buy something that wasn't ready and it just didn't work out. You can either wait or you can get something else. If you think your money is going to perform a miracle, or should, then think again.

I've bought from a OEM and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But I just prefer to build the machine myself now since I see more advantages in it. It costs me time and some stress when things don't setup perfectly on the first try, but it's worth it to me.

"I think I brained my damage"
March 7, 2001 2:56:45 PM

dh -

I think you overstate your case a bit.

After all, Alienware, a widely-respected OEM and "good dealer" as you put it, was offering the technology for sale to the general public.

Whether in retrospect we can question the wisdom of that is another matter.

Building one of those systems yourself at that time would have been the risky choice. As it is, tfbww is not stuck with a pile of parts that won't make a stable computer.


beans
March 7, 2001 6:03:38 PM

The plot thickens.

This just gets more and more interesting. I asked which specific chipsets failed and if the CPU failed too, or if it was just the DDR chipset. This is the response that I got back from Alienware. (Once again, lacking any real explanations, but managing to answer my questions.)

"
the asus via chipset and tyan
and yes the athlon did fail

Julio Vicente
Sale representative
Julio_Vicente@Alienware.com
www.alienware.com
Phone# 800-494-3382 Ext. 152
Fax# 305-259-9874
local # 305-259-4462 Ext. 152
"

tfbww says that Alienware claims to have tried all of the DDR SDRAM chipsets and specifically mentions the ALI Magik. So we know for sure that the ALI and the VIA chipsets are both faulty, according to Alienware. I wonder if the AMD chipset is faulty too. You would almost have to assume so since I'm sure Alienware would have tried everything available and the AMD 760 is out there. So it sounds like every production model DDR SDRAM chipset for an AMD CPU is bad.

But worse, we have it in writing that Alienware claims the Athlon-C chip itself fails as well.

It sounds like it's a bad time to buy Athlon DDR systems.

- Sanity is purely based on point-of-view.
March 7, 2001 6:10:54 PM

Very true, but as I said before I wouldn't jump on this bandwagon so soon. But yes, buying from a dealer in this case might have that added advantage. Then again, no computer was shipped so he got nowhere.

I'm on his side nonetheless. I just don't think one can complain so much when the technology has obviously been unstable. We've seen 100 posts about DDR motherbaords being a bit on the beta side. It's still unclear why Alienware is discontinuing the line, but AMD is still shipping processors, and boards are still being sold. Was it a matter of them not being able to be overclocked successfully?

I hope they get the DDR based systems going soon...that's what I'm hoping to get, but I'm waiting for a second edition.

"I think I brained my damage"
March 7, 2001 7:21:57 PM

dh -

Well, this is one of those cases where nowhere is better than it could have been.

Regarding the second edition, I agree with you totally, whether you're going to buy it or build it.


beans
March 7, 2001 9:17:44 PM

Alienware computer

Case:SAUCER SILVER ATX Mid-Tower Case (300-Watt PS)
AMD Athlon 'Thunderbird' 1.0GHz 3DNow! Processor w/Heatsink & Cooling Fan
Hi-Performance Heatsink/CPU Cooling Fan
VIA KT133 Motherboard w/1AGP/6PCI for Athlon Processors
Standard 1.44MB Floppy Drive
256MB SDRAM (PC-133)
SAUCER SILVER 107-Enhanced Windows Keyboard
Microsoft IntelliMouse Explorer - USB
30GB HD 9.0ms seek time, 7200RPM, UltraATA
Viewsonic 17" OptiQuest Q71, .27mm dp SVGA Monitor
NVIDIA GeForce2 MX w/32MB DDR (Dual-Monitor Support) 4X AGP
SoundBlaster LIVE! Value
HP 9500i 12X/8X Write 32X Read CDR-W Recordable-IDE
Altec Lansing ACS54 5-Piece Surround Speakers &
PCI Ethernet 10-100 NIC
Microsoft Windows Millenium
Price: $2066.58

My computer pretty much exactly the same except I have a better MB and HD but mine only cost $1300
Is a pretty case really worth $766.58. If so I am know selling systems in spray pained cases with a $700 mark up if any one is interested?

Lesson: build your own you will love it more.
mbaha


"Work is the curse of the drinking class"
March 7, 2001 9:35:31 PM

mbaha -

Pretty much exactly?

Care to elaborate on that? With prices?


beans
March 7, 2001 9:48:21 PM

Its new technology, give it time to mature.

The same can be said for the P4. (even tho AMD lemmings are quick to call it a lemon)

If you go out and buy technology when it hits the shelf, you can expect some bugs. too many products to list that fall under this catagory.
March 7, 2001 10:33:29 PM

Fugger -

Re new technology, I agree - that's what I meant by waiting for the second edition.

In my option, first editions are for people who really know hardware, have time to deal with some problems, and don't have a mission-critical application that will work with something proven in real-world use.


beans
March 8, 2001 7:16:43 PM

AMD ATHLON 200MHZ SYSTEMS
ENLIGHT EN-7237/3 W/300WCase Specs
1.44MB FDD
(ASUS A7V133-Specs; AMD T-BIRD 1000(OEM); 32X64 256MB PC133) $491.00
HP SURESTORE 9340I 32X-READ/10X-RECORD/4X-REWRITE EIDE INT REWRITABLE W/SW Detail Specs $139.00
IBM 30.0GB ULTRA-ATA/100 DTLA307030/PN#07N3929 7200RPM 8.5MS 2MB BUFFER $132.00
LEADTEK GEFORCE2 DUAL PRO MX 32MB 4XAGP POWERED BY NVIDIA SDRAM W/TV OUT $125.00
CREATIVE LABS SOUNDBLASTER LIVE! VALUE PCI 256VOICE ENVIRONMENTAL AUDIO $47.90
LOGITECH CORDLESS FREEDOM NAVIGATOR RF W/ITOUCH INTERNET USB/PS2 $74.00
ALTEC LANSING ACS54 POWERPLAY PLUS 5PCS SPEAKER SYSTEM FOR GAMERS $55.00
SMARTLINK 10BT/100BTX 1205RC PCI 1-PK (Realtek chipset) *Microsoft/Novell Certified $9.90
Sub Total $1,073.80
S&H (Ground) APPROXIMATELY 3-4 Business days for delivery $52.23
Grand Total $1,126.03
plus a 17” F77 monitor @ $170
and a FOP 32 @ $25
total system price = $1321.03

Notice the better mother board and hard drive and mouse and keyboard and HSF and burner but no “cool” case.
Monitor is from costco
HSF from where ever prices are pretty similar everywhere
the rest from www.mwave.com

Beans-I am no sure why you doubted the fact that you can build a better computer for less money than you can go buy one for. I thought that was common knowledge among the educated computer community. but thanks for wasting my time
mbaha


"Work is the curse of the drinking class"
March 8, 2001 8:46:39 PM

mbaha -

Didn't say I doubted you could build for less than you could buy. I've done it myself.

Most people who make claims like you did can't back it up. Usually they quote prices from half a dozen different vendors no one in their right mind would buy from. Or, they leave something out, like the freight. Or an operating system.

Your vendor has a decent rating on resellerratings.com. And, it's one I hadn't checked out before -- thanks for the pointer. I'll leave it to others to check the prices or your math -- it looks to me like you did your homework. The savings appear to be a decent tradeoff for your time and the lack of warranty and support.

I hope you don't really think it's a waste of time to put out good information -- that's what this forum is all about.


beans
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
March 8, 2001 9:03:45 PM

hey, hey, listen here, the price of 256mb ddrsdram is egal
to a 512mb of sdram, so go to an sdram system and get a 1200mhz amd athlon-c with a geforce3 and a 512mb of pc133 sdram but don't forget the good motherboard for overclocking.
Do what i am telling you, this system will surpass the p4 1500mhz, and the athlon 1200mhz with 256mb ddrsdram.
March 8, 2001 9:27:02 PM

I have heard better things about Falcon Northwest (falcon-nw.com) than Alien. You might talk to them. I was configured the below computer at their site. I don't know how close to your needs but they have an excellent reputation. I have never seen a their reputation tarnished. They even offer a next day air free in their warranty the last time I checked.

As for your current order. I wouldn't get the P4 unless you are playing Quake.

Faster Than A Ferrari ...
and more reliable
-CGW June 2000


Dear Sir:

Thanks for your interest in Falcon Northwest. Below you will find the configuration and pricing you requested.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about your system or the components available.

Have a great day!

Falcon Northwest
1-888-Falcon1
www.falcon-nw.com
sales@falcon-nw.com


==============================================================

Model :MM371-ATX
Type :ATX Midtower
Description :3- 51/4" & 5- 31/2" (2 open) bays, 300 Watt PS, 2 extra fans

Model :FD-235
Type :HF
Description :TEAC 1.44mb 31/2" Drive

Model :A7M266
Type :Motherboard
Description :Asus A7M266 AMD761 5PCI ATA100 2DIMM DDRSDRAM

Model :Tbird 1200/266
Type :Tbird CPU
Description :AMD Thunderbird 1200Mhz,266mhz FSB, 256k Full Speed L2 Cache, w/ cooler (Subject to possible delays from AMD)

Model :07N3929
Type :Hard Drive
Description :IBM Deskstar 75GXP 30GB 7200RPM ATA100

Model :128MBPC2100
Type :D DR SDRAM
Description :128 Megabyte DDR SDRAM PC2100 (AMD Based Motherboard Only!)

Model :Toshiba 16X
Type :D VD-ROM
Description :Toshiba 16x DVD-ROM 48X CD-Rom

Model :SB Live Value
Type :Sound Card
Description :Creative Labs Soundblaster Live! Value

Model :3DP II 64 ULTRA
Type :Video Card
Description :Hercules 3D Prophet II ULTRA 64mb GeForce 2

Model :B61-000002
Type :Keyboard
Description :Microsoft Natural PRO PS/2-USB V1.0

Model :USB
Type :Mouse
Description :Logitech Optical Wheel Mouse

Model :1100001432
Type :Speakers
Description :Creative Labs PC Works FourPoint Surround

Model :3CP2977
Type :Int Modem
Description :3Com V.90 Hardware PCI Modem

Model :p ER7T
Type :p ower Protector
Description :APC Personal 7T- 7 outlet w/phone line, $2,500 insurance

Model :WINME
Type :Windows ME
Description :Microsoft Windows ME Millenium Edition w/CD & Cert.

Model :3C905C-TX
Type :Network Card
Description :3 Com 905C-TX 10/100, PCI, NIC

==============================================================


Price: $2,691.00
March 8, 2001 10:13:52 PM

I have heard better things about the MSI K7 Master-S

CPU Socket A for AMD(R) Athlon™ / Duron™ 600~1GHz
Chipset AMD(R) 761 chipset / VT82C686B
FSB 133MHz (266MHz Internal System Bus)
Main Memory 184-pin DDR-DIMM x4, maximum 4GB
Slots AGP x1, CNR x1, PCI x5
Audio / Video Audio Chip Integrated
On-Board IDE Ultra DMA 33 / 66 / 100, Ultra 160 SCSI
Dimension ATX Form Factor PCB Mainboard

It has onboard SCSI. There is also a version without SCSI (K7 Master).

You may like to contact Stable Technologies. Ask them about your configuration.
www.stabletechnologies.com

Just trying to give you some options.
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
March 8, 2001 11:02:12 PM

If you want the best system, than AMD and some other listed components would only be considered in the middle to low end category.

ALI and Via chipset are really low end for the most part and since MS and most hardware vendors and card makers use INTEL chipsets to develop their products with , compatibility problems arise from using AMD chipsets,
as they tend not to adhere to industry standard specs.
ASK ANY TECH SUPPORT ENGINEER, loads of AGP problems,
scsi and RAID problems etc..

For the amount you mentioned, you would be able to get the following-------
ASUS PENTIUM 4 1.5 GHZ MB w 1.5 GHZ CPU

2x 128 Meg 800 mhz RAMBUS (this is dual channel for 3.2 GBPS bandwidth)

2x 15,000 rpm Cheatah 18 GIG Ultra 160 scsi Drives (3.8 MS
one for OS and one for software, can operate concurrently for close to 180 MBPS sustained ! )

Geforce 3 64 meg video

Kenwoood 72X Multilaser CD or Toshiba 16\48 DVD
19" Viewsonic P95f
CASE -COOLER MASTER 201 www.coolermaster.com ALL RAW ALUMINUM GIANT HEATSINK !

WINDOWS M.E with DD3d 8a both P4 compiled !!

this will outperform any AMD system with similiar components
RAMBUS has superior maximum bandwidth expecially dual channel where both ram modules are effectively operating at 1600 mhz concurrently

also with P4 compiled software like dd3d 8a, there is a trememdous speed gain.
P4 has dual FP units operating a 3 GHZ or 2x, and can handle more operations
also P4 has a cache prediction rate of 95% thanks to a table that is 8x times larger than P3 or AMD
it has a 20 stage pipeline and 8 way cache as
well as a 400 mhz memory bus compared with 200-266 for AMD

any 3D app using P4 optimization will outshine anything
the spec mark for the P4 is 550 and its FP is 540 !
currently the fastest CPU around
do yourself a favor get the P4, it will be upgradable past 2 GHZ this year !
we build thousands of high end systems for clients and test alot of hardware like TOM does, so I am speaking from hands on knowledge :) 
hope this helps you


CYBERIMAGE
<A HREF="http://www.4CyberImage.com " target="_new">http://www.4CyberImage.com </A>
Ultra High Performance Computers-<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by CYBERIMAGE on 03/11/01 11:19 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 8, 2001 11:24:43 PM

Here's the thing dude... It sounds like Alienware doesn't know WTF they are doing. I have the IWill KA266 board with PC2100 memory and the thing runs awesome. I've recommend that board to the govt. for use in high perfomance workstations and they've already built several running Linux and Win2K. They ALL run fine. They all overclock fine. Don't blame AMD or DDR, blame Alienware for putting crap in their computers. I have a low opinion of them anyhow, I've never seen "awesome" benchmarks from any of their systems. They just look cool.

-MP Jesse

"Idle time is the devil's time. Intel better start working!"
March 9, 2001 5:22:53 PM

Cyberboy-
I checked out your web page “we only use intel chips” seems you are biased. Plus after seeing that page I would be surprised if anyone who is not tripped out on drugs would call you let alone order “thousands of computers” get your [-peep-] straight the system you specked out is way over this price range and where are you getting a geforce 3 plus on your upgrading the CPU later on, well they are changing chip sizes so that makes it rather hard to upgrade.
mbaha


"Work is the curse of the drinking class"
March 9, 2001 6:00:32 PM

CYBER -

What "...amount you mentioned" are we talking about here?


beans
March 9, 2001 7:15:45 PM

yeah when i select a 1200 266fsb athlon is says subject to delays from amd. which means they don't have it yet!!! amd is now the king of vaporware.
!