TechSpot

A Decent Computer for a Good Price

By Tenko
May 26, 2006
  1. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    Look pretty good, except for your second choice of video card would not work. The 7600GT uses a PCIe interface and the Mobo is AGP. If you wanted to go with a Nvidea card, this is one of the best AGP in your price range:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814141026

    You would probably want to add some speakers, but if you have some old computer speakers lying around they would work fine to begin with. I wouldn't bother with a sound card, the board has sound built in.
     
  2. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Well there I added some decent speakers and that other card.. Still a little pricey but if thats what i need i guess i could save a little more haha... but if you can find something that could be tuned down without making the computer any worse then by all means mention it =p
     
  3. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    Well, with the speakers that put you just over the $900 mark. However, it is a pretty nice system and you should be able to enjoy it for years. Don't forget that the 900+ is for everything you should need, including wireless connectivity to the internet!
     
  4. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Well, thats awesome but will the wireless connection slow down my internet speed at all? That would be very bad. Also, is everything on that list compatible with eachother cuz i dont wanna come home to several parts that dont fit/work together? =p Lastly, is there anything on there that i could tone down without losing performance because that list is a little pricey? Thanks =D
     
  5. Sharkfood

    Sharkfood TS Guru Posts: 1,198

    Hi Tenko,
    As you're building a whole new system, I'd recommend going with the latest standards rather than older, soon-to-be obsolete standards.

    You can build a new, AMD Socket AM2 system within you current budget.

    A sample system, complete with LCD 17" w/ speakers, mouse, keyboard, 450W power, DDR2-800 memory, AMD Socket AM2 XP and Windows XP etc.etc: ~$950

    Parts list:
    http://secure.newegg.com/NewVersion/wishlist/PublicWishDetail.asp?WishListNumber=3547406
     
  6. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 8,452   +227

    One small detail is if you are going to use the stock heatsink and fan that comes with the retail AMD processor (which I also do), you don't have to buy separate thermal compound. It will come already applied to the bottom of the heatsink. Just peel off the protective plastic film and assemble.

    Also, as Sharkfood has mentioned, don't forget to budget for some software, especially the OS like Windows XP (Home or Pro).

    BTW, I recommend setting up a Wish List on Newegg's website. You do have to register. With all your components listed it will tell you your total (not including shipping and taxes) and when you make changes to your component list you can see how it affects the total. Another advantage is it automatically adjusts when their prices change from day to day and you can see at a glance if any items are out of stock.

    Keep in mind that Newegg only ships to USA addresses at present.
     
  7. KingCody

    KingCody TS Guru Posts: 1,568   +7

    overall your choices are OK, I can see that you looked for the budget side of things, but that's OK. there are a few things to consider however...

    1. gigabyte makes good mobos, but you should go for one with PCI-e instead of AGP. this will obviously mean getting a PCI-e video card instead, but they are often cheaper anyways. the reason being is that you may want to upgrade your video card in another year or two. currently there is still a demand for AGP cards, so they keeop making them, but this is for older systems. since you're building new, you should use the current video interface standard.

    2. although the venice 3000+ is a great CPU, I bought mine when socket-939 was more expensive than it is now. currently you can get better processors for only $20-$30 more. also as sharkfood mentioned, you may want to go AM2 instead. CPU and mobo prices are similar, but DDR2 RAM is sometimes cheaper.

    3. do you really need a floppy drive? i didn't know those old things even existed anymore.. hahaha ;)

    4. i don't know why you refer to the power supply as "cooling"... but anyways. aspire PSUs are junk. buy a good brand like Antec, Enermax, Fortron, PCP&C to name a few. you can find models within your price range. just to let you know, you don't need 500w either. and FYI a cheap PSU like that aspire will never be able to provide 500w.

    5. if you're not going to overclock, then don't bother with the AS5 paste, the CPU will come with a cheap thermal pad/paste already on the heatsink that will work fine. if you plan to overlclock however, then you should indeed get it.

    the other components don't really matter performance wise too much.

    BTW, good job choosing a static wrist band, the $6 spent on that can save you hundreds of $$$ down the road :)

    and to answer you network question, first you need to know how fast your wired internet connection is, then decide. wirelessB is 11Mb/s, wirelessG is 54Mb/s.

    as an example... I use a Linksys wirelessG router and a Linksys WirelessG PCI card. my high speed broadband from comcast is 6Mb/s, so even wirelessB exceeds my fast internet connection. but wirelessG is cheap and widely available so just get that. keep in mind that the further away from the router (or the more obstructions there are), the slower the transfer speed.
     
  8. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Well thanks for the advice =)... I have no clue what overclocking is so i won't be doing that haha.. and the power source/cooling mistake was a typo cuz i wasnt paying attention =D and ya i put a floppy drive in there cuz i thought i had some old floppys layin around but now that i check i dont. How do i find out my internet connection speed? Also, the router would be one floor away. Would that wireless card even work with the wireless router i chose or does it have a specific one that works with it? Anyways i've taken what u guys said into consideration and here are the replacements/modifications i've made to the list...
    1. Floppy Drive Removed
    2. Thermal Paste Removed
    3. Mobo $65 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813157089
    4. Processor $94 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16819103639
    5. PSU $55 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817103935
    6. HD $80 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16822148100
    7. DDR2 RAM $72 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820145525
    8. Video Card $130 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814145132
    New Grand Total $887 (Compared to $900)
    Would it be better for 1GB RAM with 2 512MB Sticks or just 1 stick for 1GB? Because there doesnt seem to be a differance except taking up more space with 2...
    Also, why are PCI-E Video Cards so much cheaper then AGP ones? The ones im lookin at with 512MB are only like $70 compared to a 512MB AGP Card for nearly $200??? Are those cheap 512MB PCI-E cards just really bad or what?
    Oh, and are the above changes good? :D
    (Please say that is good because with those changes I have enough for the new computer right now and like $5 to spare =) but i still will have to buy Norton Antivirus and Windows XP... BTW how much is Windows XP?)
    Also are there any better or free Antivirus programs out there that i could get and which Windows Program would be best for the type of things im doing (Gaming, internet, etc.) and what is the price of it?...
     
  9. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    Your new list looks fine except for one thing. The Mobo you have selected is a MicroATX form factor and the Case is an ATX form factor case (ATX Mobo's are bigger and MicroATX). So you can do one of two things, either select a different case for around the same price or select a different Mobo. The setup you have seems pretty good so you may want to grab a different case. Here is one you may consider:

    http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1779365&Tab=2&NoMapp=0

    Don't be thrown off by the title, if you look at the case specs it does list MicroATX compatible.

    And a 120mm fan:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811999346

    After the case rebate should be cheaper than the ATX case from before.

    Instead of Norton, and I'm sure many others would say the same, you may want to consider ZoneAlarm. Norton is a resouce hog. I think AVG has a free antivirus program. Windows XP Home is about $84 at Newegg, but can probably be found cheaper on Ebay.

    Here is a link to the Zonealarm page:
    http://www.zonelabs.com/store/appli...alogHome&dc=12bms&ctry=US&lang=en&lid=nav3_ho
     
  10. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Well here are the new changes... and owch my price went way up... =(
    1. Case $45 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811154058
    (I kind of want to buy everything from one place sorry ;))
    2. Zonealarm $50 http://www.zonelabs.com/store/appli...alogHome&dc=12bms&ctry=US&lang=en&lid=nav3_ho
    3. Windows XP Home $88 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16837102059
    New (And hopefully final, if not tuned down) Grand Total ~ $1050 :'(
    Well that hurts so now im really thinking about budget cutting and tuning some things down... right now i have $890 so thats another $160 to save which would take a couple weeks but maybe its worth it... idk ><
     
  11. KingCody

    KingCody TS Guru Posts: 1,568   +7

    the case and mobo he chose earlier would work fine together. almost all ATX cases have mounting holes for microATX mobos. you can't install an ATX in a mATX case, you can almost always do the opposite.

    and BTW tenko, why did you choose a mATX? was it cheaper?

    they are generally cheaper because AGP is an old standard now. AGP cards are not native agp anymore, they are native PCI-e cards with an AGP bridge. it costs more to "convert" them to AGP interface. also since many people still have only AGP, there is a big demand for high-end AGP cards, the video card manufacturers are obviously going to take advantage of that, and charge more money as well.

    the total memory size doesn't determine the performance of the card. there are other much more important factors that determine it's performance, which is why there is not much price difference between 256MB and 512MB versions of the same card.

    also, since you have exceeded your budget, consider buying norton or zonealarm later. it is not required to build your PC, so just buy it when you get the money for it. you can probably download free trials to hold you over for a couple weeks if you're worried about viruses, etc.
     
     
  12. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    A few ideas for lowering your cost....

    You could get the Zonealarm Antivirus which is only $20 and download Spybot S&D and/or Adaware to act as your antispyware. Both are free.

    If you have a spare monitor sitting around you could use that for the time being until you have saved enough for a new monitor.

    Lastly, if you want to wait and get everything at once, you can do as Mailpup suggested and put all of these items on your 'Wish List' at Newegg. That way you can always see your items and what the current price(s) are.
     
  13. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Uh i chose an mATX because it looked pretty nice and was a little bit cheaper... but i guess i couldve used a normal one it doesnt really matter... o and since the mATX will work in the other case im gonna keep that case because i dont like this new one nearly as much... and ya i think im gonna wait to download an antivirus thing because i just want the computer for now... sooo...
    Hopefully Final Grand Total ~ $990 /pray :D
     
  14. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Ya I think i might do that Nickslick well that lowers my price if i do that to around $1010 with everything... thats quite a bit but it'll be awesome and last me for a very long time (unless i mess something up that is ;))
    o and I dont really have any spare computer stuff around except the stuff on this computer (which is my parents lol)
    Oh and can anyone confirm that all the parts work with eachother because like i said before i dont wanna come home to pieces that dont fit or work... and also how do i found out my internet speed and will that router and wireless card work together or is there a specific card for that router?
     
  15. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    Just another thought...

    For a free monitor you could check on Craigslist to see if anyone in your area is getting rid of one for free. In my area I see free to $5 monitors all the time. This would only be an option though if you live by a big city coverd by craigslist. Just another option :)

    The wireless card and router you have chosen should work fine and I don't see why the components you have chosen shouldn't work together. If for some crazy reason they don't, Newegg has a pretty good RMA policy.
     
  16. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

  17. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    122kbps download speed
    101kbps upload speed
    is that bad?
     
  18. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    I would guess by the speeds you posted that you have 128k Dsl connection. I'm not a huge gamer, so I don't know if that will be fast enough for the latest games. Someone else here can probably answer better than me on this question.
     
  19. KingCody

    KingCody TS Guru Posts: 1,568   +7

    that's pretty slow. its only double standard dial-up (which is 56k max)

    That will definately hurt when online gaming. if you live in the US, verizon offers much faster DSL for pretty cheap (depending on what area you live in). you can check it out here

    good luck convincing your parents to pay for faster internet.. hehe :D (unless of course you pay for it yourself)
     
  20. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    well... i really doubt my parents will do that ... so even if i do get that awesome computer the crappy internet is gonna make it slow? wow that is unbelievable gay...
     
  21. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Dangit Verizon doesnt offer Broadband internet here... only cell phone and long distance and normal phone offers... is there any other good internet thats pretty cheap? Omg this is making me mad... Comcast cant service us either because we are supposedly covered by another company..... Now I went to that companys site and it says they dont currently offer service in my area... WDF!
     
  22. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    One word of caution.... Do not even THINK about or entertain the thought of AOL (Absolutely Outragous Lunatics!) high speed.

    What is your Zip code and Area code? We may be able to help you find something. Can you scale up your current service?
     
  23. Tenko

    Tenko TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 177

    Well we could scale up to Highspeed+ which is 3Mbps but its $40 per month... which im sure my parents wont pay
     
  24. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 883

    How 'bout speeding up your current Dsl? Is that an option? I would guess that 768k to 1mb would be sufficient.
     
  25. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 7,286   +24

    Doesn't 128KBPS download speed mean a 1MBps connection? I thought that download speeds are usually around 10% of ur actual connection speed. That's the case here. Or does it depend on how the ISP caps it?
     
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.


Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...


Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.