Building Computer

Hello! I am going to buy a new computer..
I would like some suggestions for parts!
This is what I've been thinking right now!

Intel Pentium 4 Northwood 2.4GHz 512Kb 533MHz Boxed (with cpu-cooler!) Socket 478

Gigabyte GA-SG667 SIS648 3DDR-DIMM 5PCI 1AGP Audio Socket478 ATX

Original 512Mb PC3200/DDR400 DDR 184pin 400MHz (AMD OK)

Hercules GameSurround Fortissimo III 7.1 Retail PCI

Chieftec DH-01W Dragon Small MidiTower White 300W ATX (AMD&P4 OK)

Arctic Silver 3 Premium Thermal Compound 3g

Western Digital Caviar XL 120.0Gb 7200rpm Special Edition UDMA100 IDE

Papst 8412NGML 80x80x25 26.5cfm 2050rpm +/- 10% 19dBA 4pin

Hercules Radeon 9700 PRO
Mind you that I don't really know much about computer stuff..

How can I make this computer better by not adding so much money? How are my choices for motherboard, cooling and the miditower? I'm uncertain if the motherboard is a good choice.. also I'm thinking of buying a new CPU cooler... How many Watts are neccesery for the PSU? will 300W be OK?
Does it matter what miditower I chose?

Please help and comment! =)
17 answers Last reply
More about building computer
  1. Gigabyte makes a great mobo. So I think that will ba a good choice. Your power supply concerns me though. With the 9700 video card and the high rpm fans. I probably would not go and lighter than a GOOD 350 to 400W PS. I know that CPU's are like underware (everybody likes something different) I do feel though taht you will get more bang for the buck with AMD. But what ever. :) I hope this helps. Good luck with your new computer. It sounds pretty stout to me.. Take care.

    Hang in there. It can only get better!
  2. Definitely get an Enermax or Antec 350 W or greater power supply. Enermax makes some neat cases that come with their 350 W power supply. The case has a window in the side, fan, a blue light, and USB ports on the front. I found them for $75.

    Don't skimp on the ps. Too many ps manufacturers don't meet their own specifications. That can cause your puter to do wierd things.
  3. Hi!

    Thanks for the advices.. I'll go for a better PSU..
    I suppose you must have ATX?
    Should I get a seperate tower and PSU or can I buy a tower with built-in PSU?
    I have found some PSU, but they're very expensive..

    Antec True Silent 430W AMD & P4 OK! 110 dollars
    Enermax 350w EG365AX-VE 80 dollars
    Q-Tec 400 Watt ATX Dual Fan Gold (P4 & AMD) 50 dollars
    Sirtech 360 watt Celeron/Duron/XP/P4 50 dollars

    There are also some towers with built-in 400W PSU for about 80 dollars..

    110 dollars's pretty much money =( and I don't live in the US
  4. Be careful about towers with power supplies unless you know something about the power supply. <A HREF="" target="_new"> MWAVE </A> has the Enermax towers with power supplies. Contact them and see what the specification are on the power supply. The powersupply should be an Enermax, but it is better to be safe than sorry.

    <A HREF="" target="_new"> This is the Enermax case. </A>
  5. Hmm, I can't seem to find those where I live.. I'll just buy a seperate PSU and case.. Does it matter what tower I'm getting?

    Enermax 350w EG365AX-VE
    Antec True Silent 380W AMD & P4 OK!

    Just pick one =) If I need more Watt there is a 430W version of the Antec for just 10 dollars more! And there's a 433W version of the Enermax also for the same price..

    <P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by GuitarKalle on 11/06/02 12:08 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
  6. If they are about the same price I would go for the Antec 380 W, because it has more power. You should be safe with either brand.

    One may run more quiet or have a variable speed fan, etc. You will have to make a decision regarding the neccesity of those options.
  7. Go with Antec 430watt so you can add more components later.

    Your cpu is fine, mobo is cool ... RAM i would go with either samung or Corsair. They are expensive but they are the best RAM u can buy. u don't want cheap RAM!

    And i'm so glad your NOT getting an AMD. I had nothing but problems with AMD motherboards mostly. THE CPU is great but the motherboards are horrible. I went through three AMD motherboards all had some problem. ranging from blue screans to not being able to use my USB ports to the board actually smoking.

    good luck though and have fun. remember to READ the manual before you do anything!!!!!!

    Life is irrelivent and irrational.

    <A HREF="" target="_new"> My Rig </A>
  8. That's a great system.

    If you are thinking about saving money then find an inexpensive case with no psu and spend your savings on a good (antec/enermax/power&cooling) psu. 350W is plenty as long as you don't buy generic. 300w is right on the edge but the 9700 pushed me over to 350w. You do not need more than 350w. If you are into overclocking and want to plan for the future, in that case 400w or even 450w is something to think about. But your system will run fine on 350w.

    Set aside plenty of time for this project. Be sure to be well informed about installing the cpu and paste and heatsinkfan and be patient with the process. You will gain a lot of expertise through this project but that won't happen if everything works right away, which it probably won't.

    I did not see a CD drive.

    Most people think they need to pay extra for video and sound, but it pays to test out this area first. Personally I have concluded that getting a top flight video card is the way to go however on board sound works great for me (I have top line speakers). You might save by going with on board sound. Be aware that while the 9700 is the best there is it costs a lot more than the Ti4200 which has a zillion happy users.

    John A
  9. I have to agree. Be careful with the case PS combo unless it is a name you know. Take care

    Hang in there. It can only get better!
  10. Hi, thanks for the replies..

    I'm going to wait about 2 months before buying anything.
    Hopefully the processor will sink in price, and also the Radeon 9700 Pro...

    I'm considering a 350W PSU and just a regular case for 50 bucks..
    also, I already have a computer and will be removing my CD drive and burner from the old to the new computer..

    About the onboard sound - I've heard that they really suck?
    I don't really care for supersound, but I've heard that my FPS in games can sink pretty much with bad soundcard?

    Also i'm thinking about the RAM question, if I should upgrade my 512 RAM from original to Celeron (or whatever the brand was).. It's 80 dollars more to pay..
  11. Quote:
    I've heard that they (on board sound) really suck

    You need to hear for yourself. The speakers are key. I picked up a $5 amp at a garage sale a few weeks ago to go with my monster kenwood passive speakers and its the best sound I've had on a computer yet, and I use a no-big-deal on board chip. No surround sound however. Amplifying over a good range with good speakers is what makes the sound.

    John A
  12. What? The P4 2.4 and the XP2400+ were within $1 of each other last I looked. And the board he's choosing is CHEAPER than most of the AMD boards people recommend in here! So who has the better value?

    Here's something else to consider with value: If you overclock, the 2.4 can go very high compared to the XP rating number of an overclocked XP2400+.

    Or the final blow-AMD is dropping their current platform, buying a Socket462 (aka SocketA) board is very near a dead end road. That REALLY scews the value toward a Socket 478 platform.

    AMD was king up until about 6 months ago. In the computer world that seems like ancient history.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  13. It looks like a nice collection of parts! Some things to consider:

    1.) I think most Gigabyte boards are using a soundchip nearly equal in quality to many soundcards? Do you really need 7.1 sound? Do you even have places to put all the speakers? If you answer no to any of the above, you could save some money.

    2.) The 2.4 is a nice processor in both flavors. The 2.4B kicks the 2.4a because it has a higher bus speed. But if you plan on's easier with the 2.4A because of that lower bus speed. But if you don't plan on overclocking far, you've made a good selection...but...

    3.) Intel is dropping prices again later this month. The 2.5A and 2.53 have an improved core revision which allow for better overclocking, and these should be relatively cheap after the price drop.

    4.) SiS 655 boards should hit the market in 1-2 weeks. This chipset is the first PC chipset to use Dual Channel DDR, which means with it you could get all the bandwidth of PC1066 RDRAM using a pair of PC2100 modules. Which should be significantly faster than PC3200, because 4200 is better than 3200. And using even faster RAM on the 655, such as PC2700, can reduce latency and allow for better quality overclocks.

    OK, that's about it. Ignore 3 and 4 if you're in a hurry.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  14. Thank you Crashman =) Hopefully this computer can be with me 2 years before it's outdated =P

    Some answers for you!
    1) Yes, OK, I'll skip the soundcard! I have pretty good speakers! And I think the sound is great on my computer which has a SB 128 PCI..

    2) I think I'll go for higher bus speed. I don't know how to overclock and will probably only do it a little..

    3) Yes, I saw that Intel is dropping their prices. I'm waiting for the pricedrop to come to Sweden. Hopefully, I will get a 2,5 or 2,66.. But is there so much difference between 2,4 and those? If it's a large pricedrop, maybe 2,8 is in sight.

    4) SiS 655 ? Sure! I won't buy my computer until the first couple of weeks in 2003! So this new motherboard will work in that way so if I buy 512 MB PC3200 RAM, it will work as PC6400 ?

    I'm thankful for replies!
    Also, I'm thinking of buying a 430 W PSU, as I'm going to reuse it for my next computer also.. and it's no large price difference!

    More Comments and Suggestions???
  15. 1) OK, I thought you might like to save money
    2) Good choice
    3) The major advantage of the 2.53 over the 2.4 is that it can be pushed further according to reports I've seen, but that's probably not an issue for you.
    4) The only 655 chipset board I've seen announced so far is from Asus, but other manufacturers should follow. And yes, as long as it works right a matched pair of PC3200 could have the potential to operate at the same bandwidth as "PC6400", but so far PC2700 is the highest officially supported speed, a pair of these operating at "PC5400" bandwidth ideally.

    <font color=blue>You're posting in a forum with class. It may be third class, but it's still class!</font color=blue>
  16. Its a plan to be proud of. I have one suggestion.

    In 60 days bump this thread back to the top so we can see how it looks then. We're changing so quickly that even a plan done 60 days in advance is at a big disadvantage due to unknowns. In 01/03 my number one request to the world of computer part trading is that it figure out how to rate power supplies. If you bought a 2.4 P4 but it only ran at 2.35 you would send it back and they would send you one that ran at 2.4. But today if a 450W psu runs at 385W very consistently we consider ourselves lucky. All explanations for this only rationalize this so let's not do that. Somebody sell me an exactly rated $60 psu so I can dial into the overage amount that I want without doing it to make up for your lame production ability.

    Put differently, it would be nice to see P&C come to the fore but also get some competition to reduce the production cost of these higher quality psu's. Until quartz came along (hey that's also what makes the 2.4 exact!) watches were all off in their timekeeping unless they cost a ton. Let's apply quartz timing and cost to the psu. I mean somebody else, not me. But I'll buy it so that make me part of the process.

    John A
  17. Sorry to jump in, but I saw a Raidmax OEM 350W powersupply going for $15 at Is that any good? I heard raidmax makes some nice PSUs but I'm not too sure about the OEM ones. But it sure is cheap.

    I'm building a computer myself, and just waiting for intel to release the GraniteBay mobos. Now somebody mentioned the SIS655. Is that any good? Can it support PC2700 DDR? I don't know how likely it is to OC the FSB to 166MHz, but it I can get it to go, then wouldn't PC2700 makes more sense?

    Oh, and also a really dumb question. Since granitebay only support PC2100 DDR, would it make sense to buy PC2700? Or would that actually hurt performance since it makes the ram operate asyncronously to the CPU? Thanks in advance.
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