New from Alaska & wanting to learn

By roso
Jul 11, 2005
  1. I'm wanting to learn how to build computers. Will be retiring as a mental health counselor in a few months and need to learn. We live in a remote area and am tired of not being able to solve my own computer problems. Would appreciate any input on where to start I would say I am an above average computer user with little knowledge of what goes on inside the case.
  2. JimShady23

    JimShady23 TS Maniac Posts: 373

    What do you want to know

    Everyone would be glad to help. Computer assembly is not as hard as one might think. It is actually easier to master than most programs.
    Basically any information you may want to know just ask thats what we are here for.
  3. JimShady23

    JimShady23 TS Maniac Posts: 373


    Familiar yourself with these 2 sites as they are the best and most informative on what computer hardware they have out there and also offers a decent bit of information on them.

    They dont have it, you dont need it, plus living in Alaska, a remote part at that, shipping is the only way your going to get parts if you need them too you.
  4. roso

    roso TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for prompt reply

    I'm still learning what questions to ask. I have used both sites you recommended. I am confused about motherboards. How do I know what I need? I have figured out that socket 478 is one type and other parts have to match it. I may want to go with 64-bit. I don't know enough about it yet. I barely understand SATA vs. ATA. I want a fast processor, am leaning towards AMD. I want at least a gig. of memory. I don't understand pci express so don't know if I need one. I do want to go with a large case so that I can reach things. Will want intake fans with filters to protect from glacier dust up here which gets sucked into the machines. I also want the machine to run quietly.
    Any thoughts to start with? Thanks.
  5. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,689   +395

    Putting together computers is a lot easier than it initially seems, the biggest thing to worry about is matching the processor with the socket. For AMD 64 you are going to want 754 or 939, 939 is newer and therefore will have more upgrades avaiable.

    My suggestions for you is to hide out in the CPUs Chipsets and Mobos forum, as well as Audio and Video. Read what you can on those. Another thing thats good to do is to find something you think you are interested in on Newegg and then google it for reviews, reviews often compare it with other hardware and you will learn more as you read those. Normally you don't have to read the reviews in great detail initially.

    Glad to have you aboard. I built my first computer shortly after joining this site back in December of 1999.
  6. JimShady23

    JimShady23 TS Maniac Posts: 373


    Well lets start with socket types....

    Basicially they are determined by the number of pins the cpu used in the motherboard has.

    AMD Sockets

    940 (64-bit Opteron (server, workstation) , Athlon 64 FX-51 )
    939 (64-bit Athlon 64, Athlon FX, X2 (dual core-2cpu's in one) most common retail 64-bit socket
    754 (Athlon 64, Sempron 32-bit)
    A (All 32-bit Athlons, Durons, Semprons)

    Intel Sockets

    LGA 775 (Newest Pentiun 4 Socket)
    604 (Xeon (workstation, server use)
    478 ( Most common P4-Celeron)
    370 ( Pentium 3 and Celeron)

    Im not a major intel fan and they have had umteen thousand CPUs for the different socket styles they have so if somone besides me wants to go into detail on all of them go ahead.

    64 bit tech in lay-man's terms is broken down like this.

    Imagine a 32 lane highway filled to the brim with cars, rush hour, jammed packed. Noone is moving.

    Now imaging a 64 lane highway, but take all the cars that are on that 32 lane hwy and put them on this 64 lane. No more tail gaiting everything is running smoother. There are enough lanes for all the cars to do the speed limit on.

    Thats basically what 64-bit gives you 2 times the amount of lanes for traffic (information) to flow down.

    Now as far as for you play many 3D intense games ? What you you primarily do with your PC ?
  7. roso

    roso TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Need recommendations for components for first build

    I don't do a lot of game playing(none 3D that I know of), but I do like the looks of some of the gaming cases with the lights. I like a quiet case with super cooling. I do a lot of word processing, digital photos, web pages, and extremely large geneology databases. I play DVD's on the computer and download large audio conference talks. I want to be able to do more desktop publishing. To sum it up, I want a system that is ready to do whatever I might want to try with minimal upgrading. I don't like to wait on a slow system. When I click, I want my stuff there. I'd like to keep the price around 2K if possible, but don't
    have a problem spending more to get what I want. Thanks for any help you can offer.
  8. JimShady23

    JimShady23 TS Maniac Posts: 373


    I'll get on it.....But does that price include a monitor ?
  9. JimShady23

    JimShady23 TS Maniac Posts: 373


    Heres what I have done for you and I think you will be pretty happy with the speed and funtuallity of this setup.....

    For the cpu i reccomend a AMD Athlon 64 3500+ 939 it has plenty of power when you need it....

    Memory- Pqi turbo pc3200 2 gigs....If speed is what you crave then this will give you the edge your looking for....the timings on it are not as tight as most gaming ram but (and guys dont be all like he needs 2 gigs of corsair XMS he is not going to need it for word pross....) But it will ensure very quick boot times and program loads....

    Hard drives....Now this is were the speed pics up.....2x 74 gb western digital raptor drives...These baby's are 10000rpm 30% faster than the best 7200rpm serial ATA drive....I put 2 of them on the list so you can set them up in a RAID 0 Array.....With that you will get the fastest file pages you could ever imagine.....Second I added a 250 gb western digital SATA drive for all your storage needs......

    Motherboard---A very nice fast and stable MSI Neo2 platium----very feature rich and rock solid....

    Video card- Now as you said your not going to be playing 3D games any or a whole lot so I really didnt know were to start. But the card I chose gives you a ton of options to tinker with in the Boring Alaska nights.....ATI All-in-wonder 9600XT this card has it all TV tuner-Remote control-imputs so you can basically hook up any AV device to you PC to record movies edit them or even hook that baby to your tv so you can surf the net in the ease of your recliner.....I dont know if that at all interests you but I put it on the list to bring to your attention....If you opt not to go that route it will knock a $100 off the end price for a regular video card...(and again guys i didnt reccomend this card because he games, so dont make it a subject.)

    Power Supply - I reccomend a Enermax 460 wich will be more than enough to power your system with room to spair....Plus enermax has a rock solid reputation for durability.

    Optical drives....Again I dont know if you have any interest in DVD burning but I added them to the list anyways.....Lite-On 16x Dual Layer DvD Burner
    Second Lite-On 52 x CD-R/RW/16xDVD-ROM....having both comes in handy when coping disks but if that isnt somthing you think you will need to do get 1 or the other for the purpose that you need....But as cheap as the suckers are now a days its better to get both than not have it if you need it...

    Well the total from comes to $1410.98 for all the above...$490 to spare on a case and a monitor and any other little items you may need like a keyboard and mouse ect...ect....

    I did not pick out a case due to the fact that Im not you and I do not know what your taiste is, you said a gamer style case but there are a lot of styles out there....My reccomendation to you is dont spend under $80 for one that reason being with computer cases you get what you pay for and that is the bottom line. Id sugest doing a newegg search for the following brands.. Lian-Li
    Antec, Thermaltake, Coolance.....Those are going to be your best best for a quality case....Also you said you wanted quiet...I dont think water cooling is a really feasable idea in your situation so try and fine a case with bigger fans.
    The smaller the fan the faster it has to spin to cool. Hense stay away from 80mm fans. 90 mm or 120mm fans are virtually silent and thats what I'd reccomend you look for. Make sure the case has atleast 2....I in the front sucking in the air and one on the back drawing it out....Pick a couple out and post the links in here and I'll give you my opinion.

    here are the links to all of the parts that I listed above.\


    With this system you will have the speed and performance that most anyone could ever want. And the best part is its under your buget :D
  10. roso

    roso TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Sound like a great system

    Thanks for all the info. I'll spend some time looking it over. Is there an advantage to covered drive bays? BTW, I'm a she.
    Thanks again for your help.
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