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July 14, 2001 4:12:37 AM

Hey guys,

I have a bit of a dilema right now. I am really waffling over wheather I should buy a new pc now or wait a couple of months. I know the rule of thumb is wait as long as you can, but here is where I'm at. I have a poorly built (cheap parts) P2 300MHz pc with 64 mb of ram and a 4GB HD. I would like to do some work with 3D Studio Max and Maya, aswell as Premiere and After Effects (I use other apps of coarse, but these are the most complex). I need these apps to work relatively quickly and smoothly for me. So, I have to determine wheather to buy now or wait. The problem for me is, if I buy know, will I have sufficient power? Here is a system that fits my budget:

CPU:
AMD ATHLON T-BIRD 1.4GHZ 256K FSB266 OEM

COOLER:
THERMALTAKE VOLCANO II SOCKET 462(A) HEATSINK&FAN Up to 1.5GHz

MOTHERBOARD:
ASUS A7M266-A AMD761 SOCKETA 2DDR 5PCI ATA100 C-MEDIA H/W AUDIO

RAM:
MICRON PC2100 256MB DDR 266MHZ CAS2.5 OEM

HARD DRIVE:
IBM DESKSTAR 75GXP 75GB UDMA100 7200RPM 2MB

FLOPPY DRI:
1.44 MB High Density Floppy Drive

VIDEO CARD:
ASUS V7100 PRO GEFORCE2 MX-400 64MB AGP

KEYBOARD:
MICROSOFT INTERNET KEYBOARD (PS/2) OEM

MOUSE:
MICROSOFT WHEEL MOUSE OPTICAL USB/PS2 OEM

CASE:
Netlink 320K 18'' 300W ATX 4X5.25 3X3.5 BAY

DVD DRIVE:
PIONEER 16X-40X DVD SLOT LOAD OEM ATAPI

SPEAKER:
YAMAHA 2-WAY M40 MULTIMEDIA SPEAKERS 24 WATTS

NETWORK:
D-LINK DFE-530TX FAST PCI 10/100

WARRANTY:
1 Year Parts & 3 Years Labour Limited Warranty On System Components

Would this suit my purposes or should I wait for the Athalon 4 for desktop and the SIS 735 chipset? Will the performance increase be worth waiting for? My deadline for a new pc will be about October, November the latest.

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July 14, 2001 4:24:45 AM

Looks good except you should double the ram amount. Also you are missing a key part and that is the Power Supply which the minimum should be a 350w rated. I would actually recommend a ENERMAX EG465P-VE(FC)a 431W Power supply. Link:

<A HREF="http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProduct.asp?submit=manufa..." target="_new">http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProduct.asp?submit=manufa...;/A>

The SIS735 chip looks very promissing as well as the chipset from Nvidia Nforce. No idea yet of compatibility problems or bugs that may take months to work out. Look at ALI Magic chipset plagged with slow performance for over 6 months now doing much better now also with an updated chipset coming out soon. I say buy now with the 760 chipset which has proven reliable and fast. If you are going to use a non professional card then a GF2 pro GF2 Ultra or GF3 would do extremely well in 3dsMax. Think of all the work that you can get done from now to then, it in itself can save you endless hours due to the very much faster setup.
July 14, 2001 4:26:29 AM

Also a CDRW burner would give you a great way to save your work also.
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July 14, 2001 6:50:04 AM

That looks like a great system.
Also, your 300w power supply is more than you need since your only running one HDD and one DVD drive.

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July 14, 2001 8:20:31 AM

I have that asus a7m266 mobo and I am very happy with it. Make sure you install the VIA 4in1 drivers! I just built a computer for my friend and I bought that volcano II hsf from a local store. I put it on a 1.2 ghz athlon 266 fsb and it ran hot. I didn't even have any heavy programs running and it was between 50-55 degrees C. That's the only experience I have with that Volcano II so I'm not an expert but I was disappointed with it. Also, the video card you want is good but for about 30 or 40 bucks more you could get an MSI Starforce 8831 Pro, Geforce2 Pro, 64MB DDR, W/ TV out, Retail Box. That was listed at $138 on pricewatch. I personally think that it would be well worth the extra money. Just a suggestion. :) 

- alm "As long as it's funny it's okay."
July 14, 2001 6:17:05 PM

Thanks for your replies, they were helpful. The reason I can wait a little while to buy a pc is that I wont be needing it until school starts up. I have a class called CPT 30 where we work with 3Ds MAx and Premiere, ect... So, my position is that it would be very nice to have a new pc right now, and start a bit of work with the apps, but not a nessity. Therefore, if it is worth the wait for the new athalon 4's for desktop, I can live. Do you guys still think I should buy?

I only selected the volcano II because I heard it was good.
Could you guys recommend a relatively inexpensive and quiet fan for my pc?

I don't want to do any serious overclocking, but a little bit would be nice. I know I should get more ram, I'm thinking 324-512 MB. As for the video card, I will consider upgrading. Thanks again for all your help.
July 14, 2001 6:22:19 PM

Global Win FOP 32-1 is cheap, but it is louder than the volcano II but quiter than its brother the FOP 38.

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