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specifications for new computer

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Anonymous
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November 20, 2001 2:53:12 AM

I have been playing recently on the Micron's (Good company, well, compared to Gateway atleast) specifications for a system that I wish to purchase before or after Christmas, preferably after for prices may drop. I have the price to $1,594.00, and I believe the performance can beat Conqueror's specs. Moniter size and the lack of a DVD don't bother me. I dislike watching DVDs from a computer anyways.

Changes for later (Not calculated in price): AMD XP 2000+ with QuantiSpeed Architecture--I assume it will only add $75 to $100. I believe I will replace the graphics card with a Radeon 8500 if the drivers are supported correctly by then. I based this on facts on the benchmarks and the pretty names of the features--thats what got me--bastard capitalist advertising team.

AMD Athlon XP 1900+ with QuantiSpeed Architecture
Free Upgrade! 256MB PC2100 DDR SDRAM-1DIMM
40GB ATA-100 hard drive (7200RPM)
16X10X40X CDRW w/1 CD rewritable
1.44MB 3.5" Floppy Drive Integrated
64MB DDR nVidia NV20 GeForce3 AGP card w/ TV OUT
17in MicronPC 700EX (16.0in viewable, .26 mm dp)
Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live Value
Altec Lansing ACS33 Speaker System
56K V.90 PCI Modem
Logitech Wheel Mouse
Mini Tower w/Front USB
Microsoft Windows XP Home
Microsoft Works Suite Basic
Next Business Day On-Site 1st. Year (DT)

Not expensive suggestions would be appreciated =)

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
November 20, 2001 3:57:35 AM

386SX-25 with 1mb ram, 256k video 1x1.44mb floppy & a 40Mb HDD.

there u go...
an "Not expensive suggestion" :) 

*cheezy grin*

Why do i feel like the lone sane voice in the mental assylum?
November 20, 2001 4:01:34 AM

$1594 sounds like a lot for that.
If you're willing to spend that I would look around more.
If you feel comfortable doing it I would also recommend building it yourself or have a friend help.

I would also recommend a couple changes.
512 of RAM will cost about $70 (crucial.com & free shipping)Don't use generic RAM with AMD.
Unless you're going flat screen I would get a 19" monitor. Even if you don't get a DVD, it still easier on the eyes and only around $220 for a decent mid-range brand.
Consider two HD's using RAID that will already be on the M/B. (Quantum Fireball AS 30GB $89 each on pricewatch.com now owned by Maxtor but one of best) or IBM Deskstar too.
Altec Lansing ACS33 is lower end. I have ACS45.3 (discont. I think) but would recommend it's replacement. Get something with plenty of bass. A mid-range speaker setup and the built in AC97 sound on most motherboards will satisfy most people listening to MP3's and other general use. the Live has problems from what I've read. If you want better go with SB Audigy or Turtle Beach Santa Cruz. Read up on the sound card section here on THG. I will try to make a price list for you but I'm sure you could spend $500 less and have a better system.
Related resources
November 20, 2001 4:09:55 AM

somebody out here correct me if I'm wrong but unless you're using a 5 speaker Dolby Digital setup a SB Live (or anything better) is a waste of money if you can use the built in sound on the M/B instead. Right?
November 20, 2001 4:31:02 AM

erm.... most onboard sound sucks...
kinda like sb 128 equivalent.
no eax

i know iwill have a decent onboard sound (eax & 5.1) but not of any others, save nforce

Why do i feel like the lone sane voice in the mental assylum?
November 20, 2001 5:47:21 AM

my point is that unless you have Dolby 5.1 sound system a good soundcard (LIVE or anything better) is a waste. Definitely with that Altec ACS33 anyway. Am I wrong or should they not even be sold together (a Dolby 5.1 soundcard & non-Dolby 5.1 speakers)?
By the way what M/B do you have?
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 20, 2001 6:26:12 AM

I'll second one of the above posters: reconsider a good 19". It doesnt take up any more space on your desk, and its a huge improvement IMHO. Also get 512 Mb if you're planning on using XP. I know its hard to believe, but 256Mb is barely enough. I've had peak memory usages of over 600 (!) Mbs, doing nothing out of the ordinary with XP.

If you' into gaming, consider a better soundcard. Personally, I love my Audigy card, and I cant wait for games to support EAX2.

All of the above suggestions are not making your system any cheaper, but if you're budget constrained, choose a slower CPU grade. Its not like an XP1700+ is slow at anything. You' not likely to notice at all. A bigger screen, better sound and more RAM is something you WILL notice every day.

DO you know what chipset is used in the motherboard ?

OTher than that.. I've no experience with Micron myself, but they have a very good reputation AFAIK. I'd be quite willing to pay a small premium price for such system.

= The views stated herein are my personal views, and not necessarily the views of my wife. =
November 20, 2001 6:39:30 AM

Also consider incombatibilty problems between the Audigy and the Via chipset.

Unless that problem has been solved...

-¤ Shut the f*ck up or go AMD ¤-
November 20, 2001 8:05:08 AM

I believe that there no longer is an issue, it was just the sblives piss poor pci design which caused the problems. I also believe that they fixxed it with the audiology, anyone can cofirm or deny?

"The Cash Left In My Pocket,The BEST Benchmark"
No Overclock+stock hsf=GOOD!
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 20, 2001 2:10:42 PM

Alright. Thanks for all the info. Though I never truely tried building a computer I couldn't imagine it being too difficult. I've installed a CD-RW drive, hard drive, graphics card (Voodoo Rush which I am still using--best damn card I've ever had), and various types of modems. I think I might for with 1700+ and the more ram idea. Is there a company that I can buy from with all the necesarry parts (To reduce shipping and handling).

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 20, 2001 2:29:43 PM

Should I go with Radeon 8500 or GeForce? Or should I hold out and see if the Radeon 8500 drivers will ever be supported correctly? (The reason to not wait and just go ahead and buy it is to wait to see if Nvidia doesn't come out with something better by that time.)

Also is it possible to buy a box with the motherboard and processor inside with nothing else? I have no idea how to go about bulding a computer =) I am indeed illiterate when it comes to the computer education.

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
November 20, 2001 3:29:59 PM

The radeon drivers are supposed to get better, if you wait a month you should be able to know for sure.

If you buy now, just get a ti 200 and call it a day.

"The Cash Left In My Pocket,The BEST Benchmark"
No Overclock+stock hsf=GOOD!
November 20, 2001 3:32:04 PM

Screw the Nazi OEMs. Build your own. Then you can get an actual motherboard, a real sound card, good hard drives...

<font color=orange>Quarter</font color=orange> <font color=blue>Pounder</font color=blue> <font color=orange>Inside</font color=orange>
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 20, 2001 4:01:44 PM

What should I look for in Ram and in Motherboards? Also case size--I want enough room for future expansion and probably digital editing equipment(do not want to buy just yet.)

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
November 20, 2001 8:26:19 PM

i have a iwill kk266r-plus.
the onboard sound is pretty good.
i debated weather i should toss my sblive...

Why do i feel like the lone sane voice in the mental assylum?
November 21, 2001 2:15:23 PM

drone, you were just like me over this summer. And until i wrote posts in Tom's Hardware i was going to waste my money on a crappy overpriced Alienware computer, with Windows ME mind you!! Oh how much i have learned from the trusted help of everyone here, thank you. The first thing you should do is figure out what price range you're in. For me i went all out since i was going to spend a hefty amount on an alienware anyway. The next thing is to go to order your parts from trusted sites, usually ordering them from one site is better to reduce shipping costs. Resellerratings.com is a good resource for trusted sites. I ordered all of my stuff from newegg and found it unbelieveable easy and cheap. Before you order everything though, make sure you have exactly what you want and that you research everything. I researched components for month before i ordered my stuff. Next, just remember that building my computer was the best desicion that i have ever made, not only do you learn a lot doing it, but it makes you feel proud and you gain a ton of knowledge. It's really not that scary either. One thing you might want to consider is getting a good heatsink. At the time I bougt my computer i opted to stay with the retail AMD heatsink on my 1.4 ghz. My temps were up near 60 consistently and that's just no good for overclocking. I know you're probably not even thinking about overclocking as i was not at the stage you're in now, but it's really very easy and gives you a 200 or 300 mhz increase without any pain, that is if you have a good heatsink. If you don't mind the noise i would go with the Swiftech MCX462, it's the absolute best air cooler on the market that you can buy today. My temps are now around 39 on a 1.4ghz overclocked to 1.55 And even if you're not overclocking having low temps will increase the life of your CPU. But trust me on the retail heatsink, it really sucks some serious ass, part of the reason i bought a new one was because the fan was failing. Well, if you have any questions feel free to email me at boeing500@aol.com and definitely post any questions you have, the people here are your greatest resource.

BTW, here's my computer configuration

Lian-Li PC-68 case - $200
Enermax 431 watt PSU - $86
AMD 1.4 ghz retail CPU - $150
Asus A7M266 - $170
Swiftech MCX462 with rheostat - $80
Leadtek Winfast Geforce3 - $340
2 IBM 60 GXP HDs - $300
Promise Fasttrak 100 card - $75
SB Live! Xgamer - $85
Pioneer 16x DVD slot - $60
Plextor 16/10/40 - $170
Lynksys Lan card - $10
US Robotics 56k modem - $50
Floppy Drive - $10
Klipsch Promedia 5.1 (these are incredible) - $400
Sony 19" monitor - $450
Microsoft Natural Keyboard - $70
MS Intellipoint mouse - $70
Shipping - $50

Total was about $2800 Now most people here would agree that is rather expensive, but find me a company that would come up with even half those components at that price. And if you did find them, it would cost over $3500 probably around $4000
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 21, 2001 8:29:33 PM

What is a PCU?

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 21, 2001 8:30:13 PM

What is a PCU? What is ATX? Do they have anything to do with power supply?

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
November 21, 2001 9:13:13 PM

PSU stands for power supply unit, ATX is a specification of the powersupply. All good ones have ATX. Go with enermax on this one, they make the absolute best powersupplies. I would invest in a good one, at least 350 watts, the more the better depending on what you're gonna use it for.
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 5:59:38 AM

What kind of moniter should I get? 19 in is size but what about dpi( think that's it)
also explain the number times a number thing on memory and how much memory I should get the won't decrease performance.
motherboard is Asus a7v266-e Raid Socket A KT266A.
What is Raid? If I have Raid should I use it on cockroaches. heh bad joke


<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 6:25:30 AM

Alright. Here are some components I have selected:
motherboard- Asus A7V266-E, Socket A, Raid, w/ Via KT266A chipset $168
CPU- AMD Athlon 1700+ $163
Graphics Card- Radeon 8500 $190
Sound Card- Soundblaster Audigy Gamer 5.1 PCI
This power supply: http://www.componentauthority.com/en452fanfmat.html

Now I do need to know how much memory my system can support and a good brand and how #x# works e.g. 32x64...
tell me if power supply is good.
I will be paying quite a bit in shipping. I plan to stick to
ground. total is $683 so far and I still need moniter, case, and memory. If you think I NEED anything else tell me please and explain why. I need to figure this stuff out.
thanks for all the help and patience.


<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
November 22, 2001 7:18:49 AM

no comp is complete without one of <A HREF="http://www.fu-fme.com/" target="_new">these</A>

well if luck is a lady, it explains why i have no luck :frown:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 9:47:49 AM

I know, I know they're british but check the prices out anyway. Just as a guide more than anything.

<A HREF="http://www.scan.co.uk" target="_new">Free Plug</A>

<font color=green><b>AMD</b></font color=green> 'cos my computers worth it!<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by TechiE2001 on 11/22/01 11:48 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 9:55:30 AM

I to have opted for the A7V266-<b>e</b> but with out the raid option. Don't need that just yet.
I'm also thinking of going with the Nvidia Geforce3 mx. Not the best one but far from the worst. At a decent price too. Soundcard I'm going for the Echo Mia. Check my post above for some guideline prices and also check
<A HREF="http://www.newegg.com" target="_new"><font color=green>Here</font color=green></A>

<font color=green><b>AMD</b></font color=green> 'cos my computers worth it!
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 11:29:16 AM

>I'm also thinking of going with the Nvidia Geforce3 mx.
>Not the best one but far from the worst. At a decent price
>too.

Did i miss anything ? or are you daydreaming ?

= The views stated herein are my personal views, and not necessarily the views of my wife. =
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 1:55:26 PM

I think I getcha. I didn't mean everyone else was getting one - I was just "thinking of purchasing one <i>aswell</i>as the rest of the system that i mentioned - I didn't mean that i was getting one as well as someone else. If ya get me.

I just said I'm thinking of getting the a7v as well as the geforce3 mx...... er hang on - oops now I do getcha I meant the Geforce <b>2</b> MX

Whoops. 25 intelligent posts - 1 completly stupid post. and counting.

<font color=green><b>AMD</b></font color=green> 'cos my computers worth it!<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by TechiE2001 on 11/22/01 03:56 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 2:41:10 PM

Is this stuff a decent deal? I want the Kingstone ram
http://order.store.yahoo.com/cgi-bin/wg-order?unique=d2...

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 2:45:26 PM

WTF?

Here try making the thread abit more readable trying this

<A HREF="http://order.store.yahoo.com/cgi-bin/wg-order?unique=d2..." target="_new">Same link just smaller</A>

<font color=green><b>AMD</b></font color=green> 'cos my computers worth it!
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 3:08:15 PM

heh sorry about that. Is that a good deal?

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 3:24:41 PM

I don't know I can't actually view any of the links posted - I am the victim of a vicous proxy server which limits the sites I can visit.

<font color=green><b>AMD</b></font color=green> 'cos my computers worth it!
November 22, 2001 3:43:54 PM

i would go with crucial RAM
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 4:08:50 PM

I think I will go with Crucial. If I buy two modules of 256 will they fit on my motherboard?

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 22, 2001 7:05:08 PM

yes they will fit on your motherboard.
I would reccomend buying memory from crucial becuase it is probably the highest quality memory you can buy. Also if you ever want to overclock this memory will be perfect. If you can afford it go for 1 module of 512 but these are hard to get an im not even shure crucial have them yet. (I have two x 256)

Good choice of motherboard this is probably the best kt266a mobo around. I would probably go for this one if i was buying. I would definitely reccomend buying the 19" monitor and a good one too if you can afford it. Trust me, once you have used a trinitron monitor you will never go back!!! Go for a good graphics card like the 8500. Buying a cheap graphics card now like the gf2mx will leave you practically non functional in a few years and also if you buy a good monitor your gonna want to use that high resolution.

A really important thing to bear in mind when choosing a graphcis card is that your monitor might not be able to utilise the graphics card properly. For example if you only buy a cheap 17 in which can go up to 1024x768 at most there is no point in buying an 8500 or gf3 because you will see no benefit over a cheaper card.

At the moment my choice of graphics card would be a nvidia one simply because of their excellent driver support.

hope this helps a bit. building a computer can be difficult... I know!!!

oh and if you want to use raid i would reccomend getting a pci raid card like an 'iwill side raid 100' (which is what i have) onboard raid controllers have a habit of being quite troublesome.
November 22, 2001 9:42:25 PM

Corsair has 512MB PC2100 DIMMs. They're registered, they're CAS2.5, and they're ECC though--it won't be the absolute best performing memory you can get. Last I checked, Corsair 512MB DIMMs are $80 on PriceWatch.

Kelledin
<A HREF="http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/" target="_new">LFS</A>: "You don't eat or sleep or mow the lawn; you just hack your distro all day long."
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 23, 2001 12:05:33 AM

I hate putting trying to find parts. i'll find one and then I will be told that there isn't any warranty of sorts or that they are not responsible blah blah

Anyone know any good sites? it would be nice to get all the products I want from the SAME company..

<font color=green>H</font color=green><font color=blue>ep</font color=blue><font color=green>T</font color=green><font color=blue>udor</font color=blue> :cool:
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 23, 2001 8:28:44 AM

are you in the us or the uk???
i don't really know any in the us but in the uk dabs.com, watford.co.uk and tekheads.co.uk are good sites that id reccomend.
I dont really reccomend insight.com to highly after having some problems getting them to change a faulty board.
For memory you can order direct from crucial at crucial.com
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
November 23, 2001 10:25:52 AM

You can also try
<A HREF="http://www.scan.co.uk" target="_new"><font color=purple>Scan</font color=purple></A>
And
<A HREF="http://www.newegg.com" target="_new"><font color=green>New Egg</font color=green></A>

<font color=green><b>AMD</b></font color=green> 'cos my computers worth it!
!