I am building my very first computer and would greatly appreciate everyone's help in this venture.
I primarily use my computer for web surfing and viewing dvd/multimedia on it.
I have never,ever had a top of the line computer,with cutting edge tech.....so that is kind of what I wanted this time around.
I have no plans to OverClock just yet....maybe in the future, but not just yet!!!! I also think I would like a Pentium 4 chip.
This is what I had in mind (but since I have not purchased anything yet...all suggestions will be considered:
Natural Keyboard Pro (from old computer)
Intellimouse Explorer (from old computer)
Monitor (from old computer)
Case (need something cool looking and preferrably quiet)
CPU (Pentium 4 2.0 GHz - Retail)
MOBO (This is where I need the most help. I wanted something with decent onboard audio..5.1 preferred...I don't really understand RAID, so I don't really need that. Otherwise I just need stability and upgrade features. Basically high quality, low maintanence with room for upgrades in future. So far I was thinking of something based off the SiS 645.)
RAM (Based off of MOBO, but currently thinking of 2 x 256 of PC 2700 DDR for the SiS 645 chipset)
Video Card (ATI All-In-Wonder 8500 DV)
All comments are GREATLY appreciated. Please help with especially the MOBO. Also if anyone can recommend a good place to buy this stuff, I would like that too.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE HELP. Thank you. I hope to buy the stuff this week and set it up by next week.
I can't recommend a Pentium 4 setup. I would go with the via kt266a chipset and an 1800 xp athlon with a thermaltake volcano 7 or thermalright sk6. Check out newegg for good buys and great service. If you want to save more, go to their refurbished section for mobos or video cards with 30 day warranties and free shipping on many items. For the motherboard, the shuttle ak35gtr ($115) offers the most bang for the buck, with raid, ata 133 support, 6 channel sound, and 2.3 volts cpu core voltage possible for extreme overclocking. Or, you can get the abit kr7a without raid for $140. It will clock at a higher fsb than the shuttle. I use a gainward ti 500 video card, and it works great, with overclocking already built in to the default settings. You won't need raid with just one hardrive. I've never used it.
OK, I agree with "o1die" as you can see im a fan of AMD...If your willing to spend that much on a P4 2.0 ghz, then i would go top of the line and either get the Anthlon XP 1900+ or the 2000+, Soyo Dragon Plus Motherboard... excellent onBoard Audio, Comparable to SB.LIVE has onboard NIC, and is packed with other goodies.. 512 ddr Crucial Ram....as for a Case... try here..very cool selection..and you can order your power supply and case fan and they install it with no extra charge.. www.Buycase.com Deff go with the Geforce 3 ti500 Graphic card...
check out www.googlegear.com for your other hardware, CPU and MOBO, there very cheap and great Service, i will deal with them in a second.
Once you go AMD, You never Go back!!<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Rob423 on 02/06/02 10:01 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
Intel Pentium 4 computers are slower and and about $200-400 more than an equivalent amd setup! So never get a Pentium Based system! Clock frequency isn't all that matters!
EVERCASE ECE4252 (WITHOUT POWER SUPPLY) (has a crappy reset button though) from www.newegg.com (N82E16811127001)
MSI K7N420 PRO (ms-6373) nForce Mainboard www.newegg.com
socket A Motherboard/2nd best chipset (almost equal to the leader kt266a chipset) nforce/Geforce2MX/dobly5.1 sound/ 10/100ethernet
*There is 3 slots for ram. You want to fill 2 slots to take advantage of the twin bank ram controller. The middle slot can only handle a 128 MB stick!!!!! The other 2 can have any sized stick.
So I suggest getting 2 DDR PC2100 Unbuffered Non-parity 256 MB 184-pin DIMMs and 1 DDR PC2100 Unbuffered Non-parity 128 MB 184-pin DIMM here: http://www.crucial.com/promo/index.asp?prog=qat
the 415-d nforce is coming... (the great sound of the nforce chipset without integrated mediocure graphics)
speakers.... get whatever
BEST OF THE BEST:
(You will not see more that a 2-3% increase in speed between any chipsets for socket A)
best intergrated mobo in history:
socket A Motherboard/2nd best chipset (almost equal to the leader kt266a chipset) nforce/Geforce2MX/dobly5.1 sound/ 10/100ethernet:
MSI K7N420 PRO (ms-6373) nForce Mainboard http://www.msicomputer.com/Newsrelease/nForce.htm
*There is 3 slots for ram. You want to fill 2 slots to take advantage of the twin bank ram controller. The middle slot can only handle a 128 MB stick!!!!! The other 2 can have any sized stick. So I suggest getting 2 DDR PC2100 Unbuffered Non-parity 256 MB 184-pin DIMMs and 1 DDR PC2100 Unbuffered Non-parity 128 MB 184-pin DIMM
best kt266a chipset board with raid:
best/fastest scsi hard drive:
CHEETAH X15-36LP Part# ST318452LW (will become outdated in probably 1 year.)
18.2GB about $322
best scsi controller: Adaptec scsi controllers, probably 29160n
(ultra 320 is coming soon)
best ram: pc2400 by corsair or new unreviewed pc2700 ram?
crucial is really good and cheap (make sure you always find the 15% discount link on the web out there, because the link below won't last forever): http://www.crucial.com/promo/index.asp?prog=qat
Thermal paste for amd cpu cores:
Artic Alumina or Nanotherm, depending on what you can get for cheaper.
(any other burner and you will not be able to read and write all protections.)
be sure to update your firmware with this drive
best Heatsink and fan unit:
EtherLink 10/100 3CR990-TX-97?
I really don't think it matters a whole lot.
best atapi Hard drive (depends on size):
Maxtor DiamondMax Plus D740X
(The 100GB drives are faster than all the rest.)
100GB the Western Digital Caviar WD1000BB is the second fastest atapi hard drive for about $255.
100GB Western Digital Caviar WD1000BB-SE (special edition with 8mb cache) $379 is 20% faster than the WD1000BB and is only available from their web site.
The quietest but good hard drive is the Seagate Barracuda IV which is the same price and sizes of the IBM 60gxp or DiamondMax Plus D740X .
best DVD drive:
(this drive has special undocumented abilities, like readin subchannel data from audio and data tracks, reading 90 and 99 min cds, can be changed to rcp1 with the firmware page via google, and has the fastest dvd and audio cd ripping speed) it is made by a company known for makin cheaper stuff though so it could die.
the pioneer 106s (slot) or 116 (tray) (they are the same drive with different ways to load the cd) is also good.
Name: ATA (DMA) 33/66/100/133 HDD CABLES (3 Connector)
Application: for Computer ATA (DMA) 33/66/100/133 Hard Drive
Connector: IDC 40/80 pin 3 Connector Gold Platin 15u"
Cable: 80 pin TPO "Solid" wire www.cableclub.com
best amd cpu :
an overclocked and unlocked AthlonXP CPU
cheaper but still good is the:
AYHJA Y 1.4ghz AMD Thunderbird $100
I recommend an overclocked athlonxp 1500+ or 1600+ on the 8kha+ mobo
Microsoft Intellimouse explorer 3.0
best mouse pad:
the free ones.
best CRT (non flat screen) 19" monitor?:
best 3d Card depends on what you want it for:
Best choice for most everything (price considered):
Asus V8200 GeForce3 Ti 500 or 200 Deluxe for the best high end 3d gaming and really fast 3d rendering, video in and out, 3d glasses, (no dual monitor, no tv tuner, no remote). You can overclock the thing safely with riva tuner (a free program online) to make it faster than a ti500 which is $100 more. the card can also be made into a quadro DCC (a $750 card for rendering) with riva tuner's driver patches.
about $228 for the ti200 version
ATi Radeon 8500DV for everything (except really fast rendering), great 3d gaming, dual monitors, video in out, firewire, tv tuner, remote...
about $305 (retail versions of ati cards have higher memory speeds than OEM cards, so make sure you get a retail version)
Xtasy Everything 5564 for not bad gaming, dual monitors and video editing/capture stuff, remote
Geforce 3 Ti 500 or 200 for the best high end 3d gaming and really fast 3d rendering
I recommend a ti200 with 4ns memory. you can overclock the thing with riva tuner (a free program online) to make it faster than a ti500 which is $100 more. the card can also be made into a quadro DCC (a $750 card for rendering) with riva tuner's driver patches.
about $150 for the ti200
best sound card:
Hercules Game Theater XP
Creative Sound Blaster Audigy Platinum Ex
(I don't recommend this card. It costs to much and reportably sounds worse than cards $100 cheaper, but it has some of the best specs for a card.)
Klipsch ProMedia speaker series
I agree that you should get an AthlonXP instead of P4. Depending on how much money you're willing to spend there are a great selection of motherboards. In addition to the ones mentioned above the IWILL XP333 seems to be a favorite of many of my friends, the ECS K7S5a is good and very cheap (although it has a fairly high number of RMAs due to some of the boards having emory problems), and there are many others. Also read forgethatty's list, it has been a valuable resource for me (copy it to a file on your HDD for later reference).
BTW, thanks a lot hatty, that list has saved me a lot of time and money.
Just because people are following me does not mean I'm paranoid!
Thanks for the compliments. It took me a long time to make that list since I started trying to figure all the stuff out back last june. The list it is constantly changing though. There are a few minor errors in it I thought I'd list really quick.
1. some prices are off (because I didn't update them, I think I'm just goin to take them off).
2. "100GB Western Digital Caviar WD1000BB-SE (special edition with 8mb cache) $379 is 20% faster than the WD1000BB and is only available from their web site."
You can get this hard drive at other places now.
3. Geforce4 came out!?!?!?!
4. here is the fastest 7200 rpm hard drive: WD1200JB (but it is mass money because it is 120 gig!)
umm thats all I can see for now. I guess I could mention pc2700 ram is out, but that doesn't matter a whole lot.
February 7, 2002 1:02:38 PM
wow, what a detail reply. How much time did you use to write up that list??
Don't over look the Western Digital 120G (1200bb). This one
does not have the 8MB cache, but has very high performance.
More importantly you can get this drive a lot cheaper than
their 8MB special edition counter parts.
Antec SX830 Case. I've only seen good reviews on this case
so I purchased it a few months ago. Very nice.
Also, if money is a big consideration(which it always is
with me - 4 kids), then consider getting the AMEX Blue
card before buying your components. They offer a "Best
Value" feature that ensure you will pay the lowest price.
For example. I purchased the Western Digital 120G HD for
$300 from CompUSA. WD had a $100 Rebate. I then found
the same drive sell for $199 at Best Buy. I sent the
Best Buy Ad to AMEX and they sent me a check for a little
over $100. Hence $300 - $100(Rebate) - $101(AMEX) = $99.
Just remember that AMEX does not care about Rebates, taxes
or shipping cost. Just the total price paid on the Blue