Turning Miscellaneous parts into a new PC

By dkordella
Oct 2, 2006
  1. Hello,

    I'm in the process of what started out as a component upgrade that has escalated into a full-scale rebuild. I went out first to upgrade the RAM, then the video card, etc.

    I need a new a motherboard. I have an existed slot-378 P4 processor that I would like to be able to use, but I am not "married" to it.

    I recently bought two 256mb 184-pin cards (existing motherboard was from a DELL. Originall configuration for it was 184-pin RIMM w/ECC PC800).

    The new motherboard *must* have with a PCI-express 16 slot.

    I just got an ATX case with 500-Watt power supply.

    I would like to use my existing RAM cards, but they are for a machine that used RDRAM. Is any 184 pin card swappable to any 184 pin motherboard?

    Finally, I would love to be able to reuse my existing RAM or CPU, but do not have to (would prefer to reuse the RAM). The intent is to build a computer capable of playing games such as Oblivion. Does *not* have to be hardcore or top-of-the-line, but a decent machine for home entertainment.

  2. vegasgmc

    vegasgmc TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,377

    Your processor and especially the RDRAM are completely obselete and wont work with any PCI-E motherboard. RDRAM and SDRAM arent interchangeable. What kind of budget are you on?
  3. dkordella

    dkordella TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I was afraid of that, and kind of prepared for that. Just hopeful...Thanks for the candor ;)

    Budget wise, I don't really want to shoot the moon, but if I could do it for under/around $300-$350 for a decent system I'd be happy.

    I've already gotten an ATI-radeon 1600 card (hence the need for higher wattage and PCI-E) that I'm building the machine around. I've read that Athlon-based systems tend to work best with ATI. I've been looking at that, but have gotten a bit intimidated by the enormous choices in motherboards and have less of a clue as to how to pick those out.

    Thanks for the response!
  4. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    sell the ram on ebay for a few bucks.
  5. vegasgmc

    vegasgmc TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,377

  6. dkordella

    dkordella TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for the suggested set-up! Is it super-critical to upgrade to Vista? I have several copies of XP from various other computers I've got.

    Also, would it be worthwhile to upgrade that CPU to a dual-core? I don't mind spending a bit more money if the difference between that and another processor is noticeable.

    Thanks again!
  7. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Do you really need the slowness of Vista? Or any of its features?
    I would stay away until the first service pack :)
  8. dkordella

    dkordella TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Another question: The motherboard you listed has integrated video. Are there necessarily advantages to having integrated video on a motherboard when you are planning on installing a separate video card?

    Also, I'm working under the assumption that IDE's are swappable. I wasn't planning on upgrading that at the moment. The motherboard seems designed for ATA100 devices. Is that necessary? Will it cause a BIOS meltdown if I use my existing hard-drive?

    Again, thanks all for the feedback!

  9. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 575

    You can disable the integrated video in your bios, the card you have is much better.
    What interface speed does your current HD use 33, 66, 100, or 133?
  10. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    But its $200 cheaper than XP Professional.
  11. dkordella

    dkordella TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I don't even remember, but I think I'm going to go ahead and upgrade that as well. It looks like the only part of my old computer I'll be carrying over will be my sound card, DVD burner, and floppy.

    I'm thinking about putting this system together. What does everyone think?
  12. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 575

    Looks fine except for the HD. Get the one vegasgmc recommended, it is a much better deal and its a SATA drive, so it will be quick.
  13. dkordella

    dkordella TS Rookie Topic Starter

    The one recommended earlier is ATA-150, the motherboard I'm looking at here is ATA-100. Is this a difference in compatibility?
  14. nickslick74

    nickslick74 TS Rookie Posts: 575

    The Asus board has both PATA (ATA 100/133) and SATA (1.5GB or 3.0GB). SATA is listed one spot below the PATA on the spec chart for that mobo.
  15. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,573   +65

    That was a joke, yeah? :)

  16. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,714   +397

    Originally vegasgmc said to get the beta of vista that will work for a year (or until june I think). Its free.
    So nope, no joke. Although it might be painful to use that as your main OS. but then again no more painful than linux I guess
  17. vegasgmc

    vegasgmc TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,377

    I was assuming that since you had a Dell that you only had Restore Disks that you cant use on another computer. Thats why I suggested Vista. If you have XP, use it. Ive been beta testing Vista and its a dog so far. Very slow.
    Stick with SATA hard drives. IDE is on its way out.
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