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Motherboard and Memory

$500 Gaming PC: Day 1, Component Selection

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L

We picked Gigabyte’s most basic full-ATX “Ultra Durable” P35 Express motherboard as an inexpensive path into this chipset’s legendary overclocking stability. All-solid-capacitor construction differentiates Gigabyte’s Ultra-Durable products from lesser models, assuring a longer, more trouble-free life for our system.

Gigabyte GA-P35-DS3L

Buyers won’t find many added features in sub-$100 motherboards, and the P35-DS3L is even reduced to a four-phase voltage regulator. Yet our Pentium Dual-Core requires neither large amounts of power nor super-high bus speeds to achieve good overclocks, so this basic part should be more than adequate to fill our needs.

RAM: Wintec AMPO PC2-6400

Wintec’s basic AMPO memory did well in our Budget PC2-6400 Round-Up and has retained its bargain basement price. Wintec Ampo PC26400

The price difference between good quality “ordinary” RAM and mid-latency parts has narrowed so much that we probably would have considered an upgrade, had this been a $515 build, yet the tiny application performance differences we’d expect to see make standard parts a better deal.

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