Buying components for new PC, budget but future-proof

By basiel · 11 replies
Jun 14, 2009
  1. I want to buy (build) a new pc for mostly office-applications, photo editing (basic), basic video-editing (copy and pasting homevideo), streaming audio, ... no gaming. The pc I have right now (Celeron 1GHz) celebrated its 8th birthday a while ago, and is ready for retirement. I want the new pc to last at least as long. I'm reusing nothing but keyboard, mouse and monitor.
    How much is your budget? Since I'm in Europe, I'm thinking in euros ;-) A maximum of around 600-650 euro (some 840-910 USD), shipping included, sounds reasonable. seems to be quite cheap, though I have the impression online shops in the US have better prices, but shipping overseas makes it expensive - any suggestions?
    Have you already bought any parts? Nope.
    Do you have an Operating System (OS)? I'm planning dual boot Ubuntu and XP pro, both 64bit.
    Will you need any aftermarket cooling, such as a CPU\GPU cooler or a watercooling setup? Should I?

    Here we go, this is what I have in mind (adding item#)
    Case would be the Cooler Master CM 690 (RC-690-KKN1-GP, with power supply Antec EA650 ( -> important! I'm choosing a case with front firewire connector, to connect the DV camera without having to climb behind the pc...
    Mainboard Gigabyte GA-MA790XT-UD4P ( with cpu AMD Phenom II X4 940 ( and OCZ Gold 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) (OCZ3G1600LV6GK,
    GPU would be GIGABYTE GV-R465OC-1GI Radeon HD 4650 (
    HDD SAMSUNG Spinpoint F DT HD502IJ 500GB ( and some DVD+-RW Drive

    Thanks in advance for your comments, suggestions, ...
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Good luck on your build... "budget but future-proof"... There's no such thing in the World of PC's. You will see big changes in one or 2 years from now
  3. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    I'm going to just ignore that part and help you along your way, as mentioned, it is quite a lame statement.

    Probably not, only if you overclock.

    I'm sorry to say but case firewire's are unreliable, some may work, some might not, including mine T.T. Anyway, it's still worth a shot considering the tiny price difference compared to possible hospital bills.

    Instead consider the SAPPHIRE 100255HDMI Radeon HD 4670 512MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card - Retail. The 4650 isn't very good, but the 4670 has a huge performance boost.

    CORSAIR CMPSU-450VX 450W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail

    AMD Phenom II X4 945 Deneb 3.0GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor Model HDX945FBGIBOX - Retail
    If you feel like it, you can go with the AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor Model HDZ955FBGIBOX - Retail

    GIGABYTE GA-MA790X-UD4P AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 790X ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
    Or, if you wan't to "future proof" with newer DDR3 RAM and an AM3 only socket (note the gigabyte supports AM2, AM2+, and AM3) , you can go with the
    ASUS M4A78T-E AM3 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail

    I recommend 4GB instead. I don't know, will a 3x2 ram set work on an AMD motherboard? DDR2 or DDR3 will depend on which motherboard you chose.

    I suggest Western Digital hdd's and I adore pioneer CD/DVD drives for no real reason.
  4. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    "There's no such thing in the World of PC's. You will see big changes in one or 2 years from now"...

    Got your attention didn't it kitty ;)
  5. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Tricky...yes it did :)
  6. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Your recommendations are good...
  7. basiel

    basiel TS Rookie Topic Starter

    @Tmagic650 : thanks for reading (at least) the title of my post... and tickling others with your reaction.

    Maybe I'll explain what I mean with future-proof. In my first post, I specified that my old pc worked (lasted) 8 years (and it has seen some big changes in pc-land along the way too). What I want is indeed a new pc that will last over five years (maybe adding some RAM or a newer video card). I don't want to buy something that will be top-range five years from now, of course... As you've read, I'm not playing games, and I'm not planning to do so in the future, so I don't need the newest top-of-the-bill hardware every 6 months.

    An AM3-socket is, I guess, to be considered as future-proof as 'future-proof' can be in this business, and I'm convinced three years from now a better cpu will still fit in that socket. And if I buy an AM3 cpu now, chances are little that I'll ever want to upgrade to an AM2 cpu... I'll check that motherboard hellokitty[hk] mentions!
    And so is DDR3-ram, it won't be oldfashioned three years from now, and I'll be able to double my memory if needed.
    PCIe video cards too will still exist if I need to upgrade along the way.

    Can anyone answer this 3x2 ram question?

    Why the 450W corsair instead of antec?

    As for the case with front firewire, maybe I should go for a cable left connected ;-) Anyone else got good or bad experiences?

    Any suggestions on where to buy? Buying online in the USA with payable overseas shipping?
  8. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    For your budget, these are what I would recommend:
    Grand Total = € 480 approximately, not including shipping. The PC is powerful enough for your needs and thanks to the quad-core CPU, it should last as well as your Celeron-based one. All parts are fully compatible with each other.

    You should also have plenty left over for an OS. If you already have XP Pro x64, I advise not using it unless you have apps that are incompatible with other OSes. Get Vista 64 instead or wait for Windows 7 x64 to be released in October and use the Windows 7 x64 beta for now.
  9. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    Post deleted.
  10. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    You shouldn't particularly need a 64bit OS, since 32 can almost reach 4gb. Don't get XP 64.

    I like my options better, their more future proof :). Honestly though, rage's is probably more economical. I don't know if you will want to upgrade that computer eight, or even just four years later. You will probably end up building a new one anyway.
  11. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Windows 7 will be released at the end of this year. I'm running both Vista and Windows 7RC, both 64 bit right now. I assure you that Windows 7 will make XP and Vista obsolete. 64 bit Operating Systems will also be the norm very soon
  12. shossofe

    shossofe TS Enthusiast Posts: 47

    Budget computers get outdated in 3-6 months. I just realized that my PC that I built last year is already outdated and it wasn't on a high or low budget.

    But in reality, it really all depends what you are going to use the PC for. Gaming PC parts gets outdated, sadly, every 1-3 months. But since teh parts you already picked signals that you won't be doing massive gaming. I would just reccomend spending around 100-200 dollars on the parts max. (maybe add a few hundreds more to the price to gain a massive speed boost)
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