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 Post subject: $750 budget "gamer"
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 1:24 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Sun Mar 20, 2005 12:53 pm
Posts: 1
Trying to put together a game computer for the kids as a home school project. Its been a few years since I built a computer and the choices are a bit over whelming these days. This version comes to $761 including shipping from Newegg. Please tell me what you think.

Rosewill Black ATX case with 400W power supply, 2 80mm fans
MSI K8T NEO-FSR 754 socket MoBo
AMD 64 3000+
Corsair value select PC-3200 2x512M
Western Digital 80G SATA WD800JD
Samsung TS-H552B/WBCH CD/DVD RW
Saffire ATI Radeon 9600 Video, 256M, 8x AGP
Trendware/Trendnet 11 Mbps, 802.11b pci, TEW-228PI
1.44M NEC floppy drive
Win XP SP2 Home OEM
Altec Lansing VS2121 2.1 Speakers

I was also looking to save a few bucks with a GeForce 5500 128M instead of the Radeon 9600?

My kids will no doubt want the latest games, Doom 3, Halo 2, etc. I know this wont run these games in the highest video resolutions, but will it be OK?

I already have older 17" View Sonic monitor, keyboard and mouse. Will upgrade these later.

Thanks


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:06 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 4:51 pm
Posts: 58
Everything looks OK for a budget system (to me, anyway) with two exceptions. As far as the graphics card if you have to stay low budget I would at least spend $30-$40 more for a 9600XT instead if the kids are gonna be able to run games like HL2 or Doom 3 at anywhere near decent resolution/framerates. You can always upgrade down the road, but for how much longer remains to be seen with the introduction of PCI Express to start replacing AGP in the future.
My main concern is with using the cheapo power supply that comes with most cases. It seems the majority have around 16 amps or less on the +12v rail. The two Rosewill cases I just looked at on Newegg both have 15 amps. With a power hungry Athlon 64 system that's just asking for trouble. I personally would not purchase anything with less than 24 amps on the +12v rail. A good power supply is probably going to cost you somewhere in the neighborhood of $100 or more, but it is also probably the most important part of a build. The expense is well worth the potential frustration. Some good brands are Antec, OCZ, and Enermax, to name a few. This one is a good example.
Also if you have to shave a few bucks off something else to make up some of the difference, I don't think you would see much of a performance hit by going with the 2800+ processor either.

Anyway, that's my 2 cents.

P.S. - Stay far, far away from the GeForce 5500. It's by far worse than the 9600.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:19 pm 
Clawhammer
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Just get at least 18amps on the 12v. I have a socket 754 2800+ and geforce 5700 and it can't run at stock speeds with the antec 300w sl since it is only 15amps.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:33 pm 
Thunderbird
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Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 10:13 am
Posts: 881
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
You know, you could probably save a few bucks and just forget the case and put all the components on a layer of anti-static sheets...

:P


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:35 pm 
Sharptooth
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Joined: Tue Jan 11, 2005 3:31 pm
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Location: wandering the abyss
sorry to break your bubble but if you want your kids to be able to play halo 2 your going to have to buy them an xbox it probably won't ever come out for pc.

it would be helpful if post how much each individual part costs then we would know if changing X to Z would save money or no without having to go check prices.

it would be worth upgrading to socket 939 because the A64 3000 for 754 actualy performs much lower than

im bored so here is a computer well worth the $65 difference

you really need to stay away from the GeForce fx line


some $50 case with psu
Athlon 64 3000+ s939 $150
ECS KN1 extreme w/integrated wireless G (is backwards compatable with wireless b) $130
MSI GeForce 6600gt PCIe $185
corsiar value select 2x 512 $99
hitachi 80gig sata II HDD $61
NEC 3520-A DVD/RW $60
windows $80

total $815

http://graphics.tomshardware.com/graphi ... index.html

this is a set of benchmerks for how well different graphics cards perform it lacks the 9600 but just look at the GeForce PCX 5750 it is about as powerful. you will notice in some benchmarks such as the doom 3 ones the 6600 gt will get almost 4x as high of a score.

PS: you should look at the massive package that comes with the MSI 6600gt


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:37 pm 
Little Foot
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Joined: Sun Feb 20, 2005 8:48 pm
Posts: 116
If you want the system to last a bit longer, I'd spend an extra $80 or so on this:
AMD Athlon 64 3000
Asus A8V Deluxe
1 GB Corsair VS Memory
Saphire Radeon 9600 XT 256 MB
80 GB Maxtor SATA HDD
Sony 52x32x52x16 Combo Drive
Antec Black Solutions Case w/ 350w PSU
Creative Inspire T3000 2.1 Speakers
Windows XP Home w/ SP2

As for the networking stuff, I'll leave that up to you, but everything I just listed comes down to about $830.

BTW, I used to have a 9600 XT, with some crappy Major Brand RAM, an Intel 3 GHz Proc. and it ran doom 3 on high at 1280x1024, so the 6600 GT would be overkill if you want to save some cash. And if you REALLY wanna save money, get a 9600 Pro and OC it to XT speeds, then get an Athlon XP/Socket A mobo of your choice.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 2:47 pm 
Team Member
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dunn2953 wrote:
sorry to break your bubble but if you want your kids to be able to play halo 2 your going to have to buy them an xbox it probably won't ever come out for pc.

it would be helpful if post how much each individual part costs then we would know if changing X to Z would save money or no without having to go check prices.

it would be worth upgrading to socket 939 because the A64 3000 for 754 actualy performs much lower than

im bored so here is a computer well worth the $65 difference

you really need to stay away from the GeForce fx line


some $50 case with psu
Athlon 64 3000+ s939 $150
ECS KN1 extreme w/integrated wireless G (is backwards compatable with wireless b) $130
MSI GeForce 6600gt PCIe $185
corsiar value select 2x 512 $99
hitachi 80gig sata II HDD $61
NEC 3520-A DVD/RW $60
windows $80

total $815

http://graphics.tomshardware.com/graphi ... index.html

this is a set of benchmerks for how well different graphics cards perform it lacks the 9600 but just look at the GeForce PCX 5750 it is about as powerful. you will notice in some benchmarks such as the doom 3 ones the 6600 gt will get almost 4x as high of a score.

PS: you should look at the massive package that comes with the MSI 6600gt


i would go with that system but if you want to save some $ go with a 6600 non gt.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 3:52 pm 
Little Foot
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Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2005 2:47 pm
Posts: 113
This is what I bought my brother for his birthday, it runs the new games fine (not as top setting but it still runs them fine). And since everyone here is trying to talk you into spending more I figure thats too easy Ill go for spending less

amd 2500+ $90
MSI Kt4vl $40
ATI 9600xt 256mb $149
WD 80gb 7200rpm/8mb buff $57
1 gb ram $99
sony dvd burner $57
sound onboard
case w/psu inwin $50
windows $80

total $622

of course if you want to spend 200 bucks more go ahead, but the prefromance wont be that much more noticable


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 4:00 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 4:51 pm
Posts: 58
As an addendum, here's a good article that explains what all the terms/numbers mean when it comes to power supplies. And I also agree that you might consider going with a 939 system instead if you can swing it just to be a little more "future proof". Man is that term ever getting worn out.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 4:07 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 4:51 pm
Posts: 58
dunn2953 wrote:
it would be worth upgrading to socket 939 because the A64 3000 for 754 actualy performs much lower than


?????
Not according to Tom's Hardware CPU charts. They're almost dead even in most instances and the Newcastle even beats it some application benchmarks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 5:29 pm 
Little Foot
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Joined: Sun Mar 13, 2005 2:47 pm
Posts: 113
mach0 is right the benchmarks are nearly the same and the eye cannot tell the difference


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2005 6:42 pm 
Contributing Writer
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Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2004 8:09 pm
Posts: 9602
Location: Land of the Lounge Lizards
seventhsign wrote:
mach0 is right the benchmarks are nearly the same and the eye cannot tell the difference


It's true the performance difference isn't anything to brag about at equal speeds, but there's a value to be had in future upgradeability. An equivalent s939 build can be had for $5 more:

Planned s754 Upgrade
K8T Neo-FSR - $73
AMD 3000+ Retail s754 - $146
TOTAL - $219

Socket 939 Upgrade
Chaintech s1689 - $71
AMD 3000+ Retail s939 - $153
TOTAL - $224

Or better yet, go with Chaintech's nF4 solution for $89 and invest in a budget PCI-E card (assuming it still fits within the budget).


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