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First Build: comments on my components, please?

OK: this is for my Computers class project. Purpose: to build a computer from scratch that will last a home user (not a heavy gamer) for at least 6 years, hopefully more. Not cutting edge people, but not too far behind either.

The budget is $1,100. Some of that has to go to other hardware, like a vidcam, headset, DSL Modem, etc. Some has to go for software, such as Antivirus, firewall, OS, office suit, etc.
I haven't figured out how much these items will cost, so I need to leave myself a buffer in the budget.

For processor and hard drive I chose 2 options, figuring that my user doesn't need the high end version, but if they have it, their computer will last longer.
There are two configurations, using the higher and lower end versions of the components, with two drastically different subtotals:

1. Gigabyte GA-k8nf-9 ($76)
2. MSI k8n Neo4f ($70)

video card:
1. POWERCOLOR R96-D3G Radeon 9600PRO 256MB 128-bit DDR AGP 4X/8X ($79)
MSI FX5500-TD256 Geforce FX5500 256MB 128-bit DDR AGP 4X/8X Video Card ($75)
2. should I spring for the more expensive Sapphire Radeon x1300, ($95) and if so, why?

Optical drive:
1,2. Sony DVD and CD burner: Model #: DW-Q30A BK NO/SW ($38)

Sound card: skip it unless there?s lots of extra cash at the end.

1,2. Antec Sonata II, since there is no significant price break from the Sonata I and it has a better power source ($98-$99)
(May shave money off by getting a diff. case. Can anyone reccommend one with a 450 watt power source for cheaper?)

1. AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Venice ($156)
2. AMD Athlon 64 x2 38oo+ ($322)

Hard drive:
1. Western Digital Caviar SE 80 gig SATA ($55)
2. Maxtor Diamond Max 160 gig SATA ($90)

1,2. 17" LCD ($189)
May shave off here by using owner's previous monitor, be it CRT or LCD.

The total for version 1 is: $685, leaving me plenty for software and peripherals.
the total for version 2 is: $908, meaning that I may have to rely on freeware.

Or, I could combine the two, choosing the best for the more essential components.

Speakers, keyboard, and mouse I'm assuming my user has already and does not need to upgrade.

Thanks. smile.gif

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Any computer made with name brand parts

In reply to: First Build: comments on my components, please?

should last six years. Failures are basically a random luck of the draw issue beyond our control after we assembly the items without reducing their reliability.

It may be a trick question, in that the CMOS battery life is not that long and fans usually don't last that long. Also the newer burners have short lives, however it is very unlikely that there is anything that you can do about it.

Just use dual ball fans.

Hard drives have about 5 years of operating life before wearout starts, however that's 5 years at 24 hours per day.

Solid state devices wearout is in tens of years.

The other catch is a design which assures that the components all run at their design temperature. Again, the loss of a cooling fan can kill the entire system. A power supply rated about 25 to 30 % higher wattage than the components consume helps the power supply capacitors live longer. wattage

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hum- I think it was in terms of technological obsolete-ness

In reply to: Any computer made with name brand parts

the system is supposed to be able to keep up with evolving technology for around 6 years, not necessarily last that long.

Meaning, whatever upgrades the home user makes to their software, the hardware should be able to keep up.

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In reply to: First Build: comments on my components, please?

Don't forget a floppy/media card reader nor windows nor ac5 thermal compound. You're missing memory? Both gfx cards are incompatible with motherboard. Now with those changes expect setup 1 to be around $900 and setup 2 to cost your $1100 with monitor. What class project is this for...

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graphics not compatible?

In reply to: RE:

Yikes! I was afraid something like that would happen. Why not, and how can you tell? Are there any more compatability issues?

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Both motherbaords are pci-express

In reply to: graphics not compatible?

so you need a pci-e card nto agp. The x1300 pro is a pci-express card. If you really need cheap, go for a pci card.


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Fun Class Project

In reply to: First Build: comments on my components, please?

Hmmm will lets look *All Price's will be from Newegg.com*

Antec LifeStyle SONATA II Piano Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case 450Watt SmartPower 2.0 ATX 12V V2.0 for AMD & Intel systems Power Supply - Retail * Solid case with a Antec Power supply rated high a enough that future upgrades will not be a issues if they are needed* Price 118.98

ASUS A8N5X Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail *This board is a Socket 939 so its running the latest Socket from AMD and its 64bit Compatible for future expansion it also includes a PCI Expresses Video Slot which also helps for future expansion and it has SATA hookups a most have* Price 100.94

AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Venice 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Processor Model ADA3200BPBOX ? Retail * This is a good processor and the one I currently run its pretty quick and I cant see it running out of steam for some time I know people who still run K6 system and this is light years ahead of that as long as your not going to be doing super heavy gaming this will work perfect for you. And it gives you ability for future expansion to a 64bit operating system.* Price 161.99

-Video Card
MSI RX1300Pro-TD256E Radeon X1300PRO 256MB GDDR2 PCI Express x16 Video Card ? Retail * you want to go with a nice video card due video cards are the first item to become obsolete on computers this is a nice entry level card with 256mb of memory which will be a nice little boost for low end gaming for not much money and I have owned 2 MSI video cards and both have been great* Price 104.64

Rosewill 512MB (2 x 256MB) 184-Pin DDR SDRAM Dual Channel Kit System Memory ? Retail * The reason I am suggesting the 2x 256mb sticks is the fact you can run them in dual channel. This should be a little quicker then running just a stick of 512. Due to the fact the computers is going to address them at a 128bits instead of 64bits which allow the system to stay a little more competitive for a while longer also the price is the same as 1 stick of 512 memory.*
Price $43.80

-Hard Drives
x2 Maxtor DiamondMax 10 6L080M0 80GB 7200 RPM Serial ATA150 Hard Drive ? OEM *The reason for the x2 suggestion was for the fact you can take both 80gigs place them in Raid 0 to equal out to 160gigs which should be plenty of storage for any one also when there placed in Raid 0 that should give a nice performance boost to the system and keep it running quicker longer.* Price $123.98

-DVD-Rom Drive
LITE-ON Beige ATAPI/E-IDE DVD Burner Model SHM-160P6S BG ? OEM * good quality cheap DVD burner with all the latest DVD burning features also it comes with a free copy of Power DVD and Nero* Price $38.99

-A Drive
NEC Black 1.44MB 3.5" Internal Floppy Drive ? OEM * it?s cheap and it will get the job done* Price $11.99

Windows XP Home OEM * it?s cheap and must normal computers user don?t needed pro* Price $94.94

AOC D1770A Beige 17" CRT Monitor Built in Speakers ? Retail *The reason I would suggest going with a CRT is due to price this monitor is going to cost way less then a LCD not to mention it has build in speakers so u can save a little money.* $124.99

This setup will cost you 925.74 leaving you 74.76 to get a Mouse, keyboard and Digital cam. Also you can get the items way cheaper if you are willing to look around on the internet. I hope this answer any question you might have and it gives you a general idea of what direction to go in. Also keep in mind a another way to cut some cost would be to go with a Socket 754 which will save some money but your going to lose you performance edge also.

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Cheap Solid Case

In reply to: Fun Class Project

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Gaming or Home Use???????

In reply to: First Build: comments on my components, please?

If you are building this for the average home user there are some step you might want to reconsider.

1) Find a motherboard with built-in video. This should save you some $$ on buying 2 components. Since you are building this rig for home user, they do not need a pricey vid card. They can always add it on later.

2) Look for a mid-range tower, for a home user to end up with the Sonata is quite a overkill.

3) If possible, also check if the MB have onboard NIC. Since you'll going to have DSL.

Look around and find the best bargain.

Hope this help you in you build.

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Onboard NIC?

In reply to: Gaming or Home Use???????

What's that?
And I didn't see any motherboards with onboard video. It seems to be very passe. Also, the home user does watch some video and play some games, so I dont want to under do it, especiallly with the possibility of a Vista upgrade.

I actually sort of custom built the computer I"m using now, and I didn't care much abaout the case, and the thing makes a racket and I'm regretting it. If there's a cheaper case that I can count on to not be noisy, I'd snap it up quickly.

And what is NIC?

Thanks tons.

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In reply to: Onboard NIC?

NIC = Network Interface Card

It used to be that most computers had no built-in network interface capabilities, so you had to insert some type of ''card'' to add this capability.

While technically not a card, most motherboards today have networking circuitry built into the motherboard. It may be called something like ethernet, 10/100 LAN, gigabit LAN, 1000Mbps LAN, among others.

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(NT) (NT) All new mobos have nics onboard

In reply to: Gaming or Home Use???????

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Better prices

In reply to: First Build: comments on my components, please?

This is the Comptuer I am building, I Find it to be better and cheaper
1.ASRock 939Dual-SATA2 Socket 939 ULi M1695 ATX AMD Motherboard. This board has LAN. It supports both AGP and PCI cards as well, good for the price and it can support AMD dual core ( it says so on the box, i have it yet havent added the chip to it yet) (70.99$ at new egg)
2.NEC Beige IDE DVD Burner Model ND-3550A. A 38$ CD/DVD Dual layer etc etc burner. great price at newegg
3.ASPIRE X-Dreamer ATXB3KLW-BK/420W Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case ATX 420W power supply for AMD/Intel Power Supply 49.99$ at new egg, great Case pretty big and good looking.
4.AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ Manchester 1GHz FSB Socket 939 Dual Core Processor I found this one at 295$!! Not 325 and not at new egg(301$)www.geek.pricegrabber.com just type in dual core or something, then you'll find it.
5.SAPPHIRE 100141L Radeon X1300 256MB DDR PCI Express x16 Video 85$ and its S-video/HDTV/Composite out
6.Western Digital Caviar SE WD1600JB 160GB 7200 RPM IDE Ultra ATA100 Hard Drive For 79$ has pretty decent reviews and WD, what else can you ask for?

Oh and the case comes with 2 other fans 8MM besides the PSU Fan, on the sides.

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