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Building a computer

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Blakes7, Aug 8, 2006.

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  1. Blakes7

    Blakes7 Thread Starter

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    Hi! I'm considering building a computer to replace one I built about 8 months ago and am selling this weekend. This would be a back-up for when the computer I currently use---it's over 5 years old, goes. What I'm looking at is an AMD athlon 3700+ San Diego cpu, a WD SATA 80mb drive, Lite-on shm-165h6s dvd-rw, and 1 gb memory. The memory I can get on e-bay for $65. The dvd-rw I can get cheaper than the prices they have for it on e-bay. The cpu and HD are retail. I think I've found a case---advertised as SATA 600 watts. The motherboard I found the highest ratings for this athlon chip is an ASUS a8v deluxe. I've seen a8v-e deluxe, but I don't know if that's an upgrade or what. The price seems a little high for what I want to pay for a motherboard. Also I wnat a good video card. I'm not a gamer, but I do want a good video card for about $50. I've looked at 512mb cards on e-bay, but I'm not sure if I understand all the specs. Some come with their own fans, and one mentioned needing an adaptor to plug into the power supply, and I don't know how much better pci e cards are than agp. The prices are high for xp pro, and I got ripped 2 years ago on a pirated copy that wouldn't activate. I saw that their is an xp pro for 64 bit architecture, but I don't know if there would be software compatibility problems with it, or if it would be any better for my needs. I'm trying to do this for under $550, but that depends on how much the motherboard, video card, and xp cost. I'm looking at $47 for the hd, $44 for the dvd-rw drive, $43 for the case---which seems to be a crap shoot to get a decent one that fulfills my requirements, $105 for the cpu, and, like I said, $65 for the memory. Also, I don't know what cooling fan I should use with this set-up. Any and all help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
    Victor
     
  2. Seth13

    Seth13

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    I wouldnt buy RAM on ebay, unless you're positive its brand new, and has a return policy.


    Ebay really wouldnt be the best place for anything to do with computer hardware... too risky IMHO. Dell has some cheap computers that would be cost effective, and run very smooth. What are you planning on using this computer for?
     
  3. crjdriver

    crjdriver Moderator

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    I agree. EBAY is the last place to buy computer parts. If you want the system to last, do not try and cheap out parts. Quality hardware does not reboot, freeze, etc.

    FWIW I would not buy a case and power supply unless it was an antec or enermax case. The power supplies that come with most cases are junk. Buy the case you want without a ps and install a quality pw supply.
     
  4. Rich-M

    Rich-M

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    Well I diasagree as I have built hundreds of pc's and only buy parts on eBay if possible. You simply need to do some work is all and check feedback of sellers and freight prices too.
    However the last place I would buy ram is on eBay as it is hard to find enough out about ram there as the sellers seldom understand how difficult ram is to match. Use the configurators at www.crucial.com www.kingston.com or www.corsair.com and then buy the models only that show as compatible.
    Cpu's that are new are generally too high on eBay and better prices happen at www.pricewatch.com as you are also right with dvd drives. Hard drives are cheap as can be on eBay and there are plenty of new ones to be had. I often buy used cpu's on eBay and those prices cannot be beat and I have yet to have a bad transaction, but I am careful and know how to play eBay as well.
     
  5. Blakes7

    Blakes7 Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the replies. I've put together 3 computers that I've sold using e-bay parts, including the ram. I research every part before I buy. I don't buy the ram from individuals, but from distributors who are selling large quantities of a 1gb stick. The case can be expensive retail, and over-all the appearance doesn't matter since you don't look at it after the initial use. I just want to be sure it'll work with the system I intend to build. As for Dell, they pretty much suck any more. They bought out e-machines who were their main competitor to their systems---cheap mobos, limited bays, very tough to upgrade. I do look at pricewatch---you just have to watch the ratings on the sellers. I'll pay a little more to buy from e-wiz or newegg for some parts. What I really need is advice on the mobo and the video card. Pricewatch has some xp pros at a reasonable $80 to $90, but some of them are student copies. Are they full versions? Thanks again for the replies.
    Victor
     
  6. Rich-M

    Rich-M

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    I have bought these XP Pro full version for builds and they work fine:
    http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm
    I had that motherboard on my first build with socket 939 as much as I distrust Via chipsets and other than the nightmare of XP install finding right driver (which is on Asus cd BTW, but not readable you have to make like you are installing it to another system to find it and make floppy disk), it was a good board. But frankly if I had to do it over, I would have gone straight to pvi-express video card which I was trying to avoid but I can tell you the difference in graphics is "night and day" and I would never go back to agp.
    Here is a board that I replaced tha twith that takes both agp and pci-express BTW and I highly recommend.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813138270
     
  7. TreyDawgMT

    TreyDawgMT

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  8. Blakes7

    Blakes7 Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the replies. I'm not familiar with Biostar, but that motherboard sounds like what I'm looking for. The difference in price between that and the asus, and the problems you encountered with the asus, make the Biostar my likely choice. Thanks, Rich. Now I have to figure out what video card, which xp pro to get---whether or not the x64 architecture operating system is better and worth the extra money, and what kind of cooling fan to use for the cpu. The case has room for 2 fans and has a lead 600w dual fan power supply and a sata connector. I don't know what the lead means. Thanks.
    Victor
     
  9. Rich-M

    Rich-M

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    Biostar is an old established motherboard maker more into budget boards but always good quality at a price that is moving up quality and features a bit and I have to tell you this is an outstanding motherboard.
     
  10. MysticEyes

    MysticEyes Banned

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    Emachine was bought by Gateway and according to one poll (PCWorld) Emachine was ranked first in reliability, support and customer satisfaction.
     
  11. JEBWrench

    JEBWrench

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    Who was ranked first, Mystic? eMachines or Dell?
     
  12. Blakes7

    Blakes7 Thread Starter

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    E-machines was ranked first according to their web site. I had one to setup a network to learn networking. It's a basic computer, nothing more. And you're right, Mystic. They were bought by Gateway. My bad. Thought they were bought by Dell.
    Victor
     
  13. JEBWrench

    JEBWrench

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    Having worked on numerous eMachines, I wholeheartedly disagree with their reports. They're slow and adware ridden. If you get one, format immediately. Then they're more of a basic computer, albeit with sub-par parts.

    Addition: They (eMachine computers) were also listed as one of the 25 worst technology products of all time recently by PCWorld.
     
  14. MysticEyes

    MysticEyes Banned

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    Lets see we have a poll of over 42,000 readers, who as readers of PCWorld would make them more knowledgeable than the average user vs. one man's opinion. Yea... OK.

    I guess I could throw in my personal experience. I have 2 Emachines that I have run continuously 24/7 for 7 years (that's over 61,000 hours). In that time I've only had to replace the power supplies and heat sink fans. They still run as good as the day I bought them. Here's another interesting point, I've never defragged them either.

    I apologize for drifting off the point of this post.
     
  15. JEBWrench

    JEBWrench

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    You just missed that part about being named one of the worst products in the history of mankind, but you're claiming it to be one man's opinion? ;)

    I've never seen a good review of an eMachine product. I've never seen one outperform a self-built machine of similar specs. I've seen them regularly blow components after only days of use. I've seen them literally ignore technical service calls. I've seen one take up to 5 minutes (timed) to boot up and load all their malware - before even once being online, since the modem didn't work in it to begin with.

    And, here's my reference: About the PCWorld article Should you disbelieve my claim.

    I'd be glad to take this to another thread if you'd like to take this conversation further, or I'd be equally willing to drop it.
     
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