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11/22/2017 10:05:29 PM
Posted: 9/14/2004 2:41:09 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 2:41:46 PM EST by THellURider]
So my Dell of 4 years is crapping out on me. It gave me 4 years with 2 of those in the dorms. I've decided to build my next one. My brother has built 3 so far. As far as I can tell its not that difficult. The hardest part being picking out the correct components. Please take a look and tell me what you think. I'm trying to buy the best of everything within reason. The computer has no specific purpose, it needs to be the SUV of computers.

From what I've gathered I need to find RAM that has the same clock speed as the FSB on the PCU. I want at least a gig of RAM. Suggestions?

Motherboard, I'm waiting on my brother to get back to me, what are some good ones?

Intel Pentium 4 3.2 ghz w. 800 Mhz FSB $233
http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproductdesc.asp?description=19-116-172&DEPA=0

Motherboard ?


Video Card ATI Radeon 9800 Pro $217.00
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=14-102-286&depa=0

Sound Card Creative Labs Soundblaster $113 ($30.00 mail in rebate) not included)
http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproductdesc.asp?description=29-102-171&DEPA=0

Back up External Harddrive Maxtor One Touch 80 Gb $132
http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproductdesc.asp?description=22-144-406&DEPA=0

Praetorian Silver Case $98
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=11-119-029&depa=1

Power Supply CoolMax 400W Silent Power Supply $38
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=17-159-023&depa=0

CD-ROM $19
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=27-134-007&depa=0

CD Burner ~$38

RAM ?

Harddrive Maxtor 120 GB $109
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=22-144-351&depa=0



Thanks. Wish me luck. Any build tips?

Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:44:03 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:44:49 PM EST
<COUGH> weak <COUGH>

as I sit here with a 1.8 ghz laptop
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:45:19 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:47:16 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 2:55:39 PM EST by Misery]
Maxtor

Get something a little better like Seagate Not the Barricuda
I'd get an Abit motherboard with Intel chipset.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:51:19 PM EST
I like Abit for the most part, but lately their BIOSs have been iffy and at least on the 875 boards, the Northbridge is prone to crap out, which can fry the board.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:52:58 PM EST
Get a DVD burner!

And only 3.2 ghz? What are you, some kind of girly man?
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 2:56:51 PM EST
Might want to research the types of games you play and then pick out a vid card before laying down two bills. Most are optimized for Radeon OR nVidia. UT2005, BF1942, BF:V and some others were nVidia card games. If you play Sims alot you may like the 9800.

A gig memory is minimum IMO.

If you've got the dough a RAID setup with SATA dual WD Raptor 36 GB drives is pretty sweet. My buddy has it and it is lightning fast for $250.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:00:55 PM EST
Dont buy the soundblaster for 100+...thats a ripoff...you can get a soundblaster 5.1 gaming card for 30.00 OEM at pricewatch.com...save you some money
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:15:43 PM EST
you're wasting your money on the overpriced intel crap. Get an amd. They've been kicking intel's butt on price / performace for some time now.

Spend the money you save on upgrading to one of the new x800 video cards from ati.

The sound card is nearly $10 cheaper at mwave. Alot of other things probably are, too.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:24:38 PM EST

Originally Posted By CAMPYBOB:
Any build tips?

brush up on your hot linking abilities first.



Its a direct paste from my email I sent my brother. I wasn't going to bother hotlinking them. Cranky as usual I see.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:26:21 PM EST
+1 on the AMD!!
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:31:14 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 3:37:26 PM EST by Sturmwehr]

I want at least a gig of RAM. Suggestions?

RAM ?


You don't need a gig of RAM unless you're running a server, really. I would suggest 512 MB of PC-3200 or 768 MB of PC-2700. DDR-400 is the way to go, dude.

Any build tips?

Fans are like ammo - you can never have too much/too many. I suggest having 3 or more 12mm fans on your case.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:31:20 PM EST

Originally Posted By MisterFloppy:
Get a DVD burner!

And only 3.2 ghz? What are you, some kind of girly man?



Don't really need a DVD burner.

3.2 Ghz, everything else is exponantially more expensive.

Bastiat - As far as Intel vs AMD at the CPU's I was looking at the price difference was minimal. I know Intel works. AMD might be bang for the buck better but not hugely.

P38 - You a G5 man or something?

JoeWang - I don't do a lot of gaming at all. Every so often when I'm bored. I'm a college student so procrastination is my job. I agreee a gig is minimum but it out to do me fine. I can always add more. Any suggestions?

Wanna translate "If you've got the dough a RAID setup with SATA dual WD Raptor 36 GB drives is pretty sweet. My buddy has it and it is lightning fast for $250." ?
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:31:31 PM EST
+1 AMd
Get Raid and a couple of 120gigs striped
check pricewatch.com
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:32:45 PM EST
tiger direct has 200 gig hard drives western digital for 89. (129 with a 40 rebate)
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:33:04 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 3:36:16 PM EST by Sturmwehr]

Originally Posted By THellURider:
Don't really need a DVD burner.



Few people do - but you DO need a DVD-Rom drive. I didn't see one listed, but I assume you will be getting one. If you aren't planning on doing so, SCSI and get both CD-RW and DVD-ROM - you'll be glad in the long run.

Wanna translate "If you've got the dough a RAID setup with SATA dual WD Raptor 36 GB drives is pretty sweet. My buddy has it and it is lightning fast for $250."

You'll be running two 36 GB Raptor hard-drives. RAID config means using multiple HDs. Although this is good for some people, I don't care for dual-HDs... Too much of a hassle. If you have the money, feel free to do it, but I'd rather buy a 180-gig HD and partitition it.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:35:22 PM EST

Originally Posted By THellURider:


Bastiat - As far as Intel vs AMD at the CPU's I was looking at the price difference was minimal. I know Intel works. AMD might be bang for the buck better but not hugely.




So there's not a big price difference between $233 for the intel 3.2 and $126.50 for a AMD XP 3200+????

It's more than $100 difference! And AMD does it better!
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:35:28 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 3:39:00 PM EST by Janus]
Motherboard:

Asus P4C800-E on the Intel side
Asus SK8V - on the AMD side

Soundcard:
Onbaord sound is nearly as good as an addon card. Unless there is a specific feature you want a SB is not worth $100 to upgrade over on-board sound.

Hard Drive:
Go SATA. Stay away from Hitachi and Seagate. Western Digital is the best you can get.

Power Supply:
Don't go cheap. Seasonic is the best in the business, but not well known. Others not quite as good, but Better than the rest: Vantec, Zalman, Antec.

CD/DVD:
Pioneer, Plextor or Sony DVD+-RW

RAM:
Buffalo Tech is good quality inexpensive RAM.

Fans:
Everyone over does fans. A couple of 80mm is more than enough. My system is overclocked and full of drives. I have 1 120mm @ 7v in the front, the PSU fan, and 1 80mm @ 5v in the back.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:37:52 PM EST

Originally Posted By bastiat:

Originally Posted By THellURider:


Bastiat - As far as Intel vs AMD at the CPU's I was looking at the price difference was minimal. I know Intel works. AMD might be bang for the buck better but not hugely.




So there's not a big price difference between $233 for the intel 3.2 and $126.50 for a AMD XP 3200+????

It's more than $100 difference! And AMD does it better!



To add:

You can even get a 64 bit 3200+ athlon64 cpu for $210!!!!!
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:40:05 PM EST
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 3:53:41 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 4:02:49 PM EST by THellURider]

Originally Posted By Paul:

You mentioned you weren't doing much gaming, what do you do then?



Everything, image editting/photography, word processing, business, internet, gaming. Basically I just want a nice computer that can handle most things. And I do prefer a Windows machine, bugs and all.

Sounds like RAID is not something I need. Probably not a good idea for a 1st time builder either.

As far as fans and Power supply, I would like this computer to be as quiet as possible. That's why I picked the powersupply I did.

The Intel chip has Hyper Threading which from my understanding helps you run multiple programs simoltaneously which I tend to do quite a bit. It also has a 800 Mhz FSB.

Guys I'm new to this. So school me, don't criticize yah? I'm trying to learn.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 4:07:01 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 4:07:40 PM EST by Janus]

Originally Posted By THellURider:
As far as fans and Power supply, I would like this computer to be as quiet as possible. That's why I picked the powersupply I did.



Seasonic makes the quietest most efficient supply out there.



The Intel chip has Hyper Threading which from my understanding helps you run multiple programs simoltaneously which I tend to do quite a bit. It also has a 800 Mhz FSB.



Hyperthreading is nice and with little difference in $/performance it tips the scale in Intel's favor.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 4:25:29 PM EST
Thanks for the post I just told the wife I was going to start building a new machine next month.

I have never built one from scratch so this stuff helped.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 4:26:04 PM EST
Ok great, Thanks for all the help so far!



As far as RAM. What is important to look for? Is it better to have one chip of 1 gig or 2 chips of 512 Mb? I'm assuming 2 channel is better than 1. And I was told I need the clock speed of the RAM to match my FSB speed, in this case 800 Mhz. But I can't seem to find any RAM chips that say that? Where do I find out the clock speed of the RAM chips?
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 4:28:44 PM EST

Originally Posted By u-baddog:
Thanks for the post I just told the wife I was going to start building a new machine next month.

I have never built one from scratch so this stuff helped.



You and me both bud.
Link Posted: 9/14/2004 8:46:42 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/14/2004 8:56:21 PM EST by Mak]
I've built 5 computers with Intel processors and 1 with an AMD. AMD is a cheaper and a more efficient processor. Two processors side by side with the same clock speed. Say the Intel completes a computation in 20 steps, the AMD completes the computation in a possible 14 steps (just an example I've seen, I also own stock in AMD though in the last few years it hasn't done very well). But even clock speed really doesn't mean all that much if other components do not match up. I will run digital processing programs or distributed computing projects and I can see that some of the computers I have built with say a 2.66 pentium 4 will out perform my 3.06 Ghz pentium 4 with hyperthreading enabled with both systems running 1 GB DDR 2700 RAM. Recent builds have used 1GB dual channel DDR 3200 400mhz RAM. 2.66Ghz P4 still seems to run some functions faster though task manager shows the CPU running at 100% while on the computers with the 3+ Ghz processors the CPU will at very low %.

Most of my computers have been built on SOYO motherboard, mostly just because I am familiar with them. Have used Intel and XFX motherboards also. Don't care to much for the Intel motherboard.

A dvd rom can be gotten for $10.00 more than your CD rom and a DVD burner you don't think you need came be bought at newegg for $60-$80 depending on what day you check the site. You may not think you need it but with free software from afterdawn.com you can be copying DVD's easily.

If you are just going to be surfing the web and not making movies or running video intense games then there is little reason to put alot of money into building yourself a high end computer. Go buy another Dell. It will be cheaper than any you can build and it will fill your needs with a warranty to boot. The Dell Dimension 3000 even customized with the higher end components will run you under $800.00.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 10:03:45 AM EST
My suggestion would be a for an ASUS mainboard. Reliable, moderately priced, and true work horses. Of the many computers I've built, the ASUS boards have worked best/problem free from day one.

As for the soundcard. Get a cheaper Turtle Beach soundcard. In the long run you'll be happier (and won't have to deal with the lack of support from creative).

If you want an overkill/make your friends jealous, go with a SCSI 320 system. I currently have a SCSI 160 on an AMD 1800 and can keep up with the big boys. Also have a gig of ram (but I do bunches of Prime number testing!)
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 3:09:29 PM EST

Originally Posted By Mak:
I've built 5 computers with Intel processors and 1 with an AMD. AMD is a cheaper and a more efficient processor. Two processors side by side with the same clock speed.



Yeah... except that Athlons and Durons are both underclocked due to heat issues.

My 1.8 Athlon XP runs at the same speed as a 1.5 P4.
Link Posted: 9/15/2004 4:11:17 PM EST

Originally Posted By Sturmwehr:

Originally Posted By Mak:
I've built 5 computers with Intel processors and 1 with an AMD. AMD is a cheaper and a more efficient processor. Two processors side by side with the same clock speed.



Yeah... except that Athlons and Durons are both underclocked due to heat issues.

My 1.8 Athlon XP runs at the same speed as a 1.5 P4.



They are not underclocked...they are running at the frequencies meant for the processor.

The AMD chips are rated that way because they perform more work per cycle...they run at a lower clock speed but can accomplish more work than an intel chip at the same speed.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 2:24:29 PM EST

Originally Posted By bastiat:

The AMD chips are rated that way because they perform more work per cycle...they run at a lower clock speed but can accomplish more work than an intel chip at the same speed.



...That's cache.

And, this statement is false:

Very nice jaggies: single-channel systems loose in both cases, Pentium 4 wins and Athlon XP + VIA KT600 loses. As we still pretend we don't know the next results to make things more interesting, this chipset unpleasantly surprises us. Where's the adequate competition with NVIDIA? On the other hand, the traditional difference between the performance of the same 3.2 GHz Pentium 4 on i845PE and i875P is impressive. Here we see that rare case when faster memory subsystem provides actual boost. In its best variant (with nForce2 Ultra 400) Athlon XP loses Pentium 4 + i875P about 7%. Not that fatal, but still considerable. We'll just say that a 6-9% lag won't turn away an Athlon XP fan, might slightly turn a neutral to Pentium 4, and will surely laughed over in the Intel camp. Where you belong is up to you to decide...

Previously we had used Cachemem to estimate the "pure" memory performance, but the necessity of running from DOS along with the age of this app was making us search for an alternative. And it seems we have finally found it in the person of CacheBurst32 (a domestic product, by the way). So, the read speed (don't be startled, it's true): using SSE (to maximize read speed) Pentium 4 outruns Athlon XP on nForce2 by almost three times! But we guess it's not only about the memory subsystem performance, but also about the FSB. As for VIA KT600, we'd like not to mention it... The write speed enables AMD platform to catch up with the leader. And this makes us wonder why Pentium 4 with its "super fast" bus gives way so suddenly?


http://www.digit-life.com/articles2/roundupmobo/p4-3.2ghz-vs-axp3200+.html


Sorry to burst your bubble, but the P4 is still faster - even in FSB and cache results. And, don't bother calling me an Intel fanboi either, I'm running a 1.8 Athlon XP system.
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 7:39:20 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/18/2004 9:15:29 PM EST by dizza]
Ram: 1 gig of ram is great. Allows for lots of multitasking. You could get away with 512 if you wanted to.

Storage: Get a Western Digital drive. I have 6 of them right now, and have never had one go bad on me. As far as the RAID setups that some people are suggesting... SCREW THAT. You DO NOT need it. RAID is great for servers.. not for home PC's.

Sound: Stick with the onboard sound unless you plan on playing lots of games or using this pc as a media center pc. (playing mp3's and movies to your stereo and tv)

Processor: I'd stick with Intel. Great performance, and its a solid choice.

Optical Drive: I noticed you said you want to do video editing... you'll want to put those newly edited videos on a DVD at some point. Save yourself the trouble and buy a 4x or 8x burner. The Plextor 708 is a great burner. I own two fo them. Works like a champ. I've seen them for as little at $150 (I bought mine when they were $300+)

Power Supply: I would invest in a more powerful power supply. Perferably 450 or higher. When you start adding on drives, you'll need the extra juice.

Build Tips: Go slow, check your connections atleast a couple of times. Building these computers is pretty freaking easy now a days. I've built atleast 150 PC's in my life. I worked at a national retailer doing repairs and building pc's.

So if you get stuck, PM me and I'll send you my email or IM name. I'll be glad to help out.

-db
Link Posted: 9/16/2004 8:51:09 PM EST
SWeet, thanks Dizza. I'll probably take you up on that.
Link Posted: 9/18/2004 8:43:50 PM EST
[Last Edit: 9/18/2004 8:49:29 PM EST by bob332]
from a person who has built atleat 50+ machines both intel and amd here are my recommendations:

this is based on the fact that you do not game and are not using your computer for anything like video editing.

amd xp 2800-3000 (intels have a history of being better for certain types of encoding, but you really won't notice the difference unless you do a ton of encoding using certain types of software)

nforce 2 ultra 400 based m/b

1GB pc3200 ram (for what you are doing you really don't need 1GB but if you want it, you want, and for the person making the statement about a server needing 1GB of ram, what type of server are you talking about? also the comment about either 512 of pc3200 vs 768 of pc2700 doesn't make any sense. if you get a amd chip with the fsb of 333 then you need pc2700, if you get the amd chip with a 400 fsp then you need pc3200. as far as intel, the 800 fsp translates into pc3200) for brand you could get away with stuff like kingston value ram since you will probably not be o/c

whatever size hdd you need. get 7200rpm / 8mb cache pata or sata. the current sata drives, with the exception of the raptors are basically just pata drives with a different connector on them. don't worry about brand too much because anymore they are all pretty equal. i have had maxtor, quantum, seagate, wd, hitachi,i bm and they all work well with the exception of some of the older ibm drives. there was a time when they had a certain family of drives fail all the time. this has been rectifided. people will argue with me but i have had most of the major brands fail at one time or another. basically all hdds will fail, just have a good backup plan so when they do fail, you will not be sh!t out of luck. backup, backup, backup. i would stay away from striping raid because although it is a little faster, it is not really necessary unless you plan on moving large files often, maybe go mirroring raid if you really want raid. you could always get 2 and leave one off, when you want to do a backup plug it in and use a program like ghost so you have a clone.

get a dvd-r/w since they are so cheap. i have had good luck with plextor(expensive)/pioneer/nec and liteon.

scsi is not worth the expense for your uses.

like others have stated get a decent p/s. wattage is not everthing, make sure it is a good brand.

for your uses hyperthreading really woudn't make a difference.

for a video card, the 9800 pros are going for ~$200 currently. since you are not a hardcore gamer i would definately not spend the $$$ on the new x800 cards or the newer video cards. a 9800pro kicks ass. you could definately go less but if you game somewhat go with atleast a 9800pro. games aren't really designed for one card or another too much. i play bf1942/dc/dcx with a 9800pro and play at 1280x960 with all the high details and never have a hiccup.

for the ram, get 2x512 sticks. you may as well get pc3200 even if you get a 333fsb athlon, for upgrading purposes. the reason to get 2 is that this will allow you to run in a dual channel configuration though you won't notice much in the amd line, if you ever switch to intel they love they dual channel bandwith of single channel.

as far as building one, they are not too hard. remember to be cautious of static. i usually build mine on a wood table on a tile floor using a static strap. i have never had a problem with static because i am anal about it. dont grab components where there is bare metal if you can help it, with the exception of the back mounting tab, grap it by parts of the pcboard that are empty. set aside atleast a couple of hours and read the m/b documentation before hand. pay careful attention to jumpers on hdds and optical drives.

also, don't get sucked into these benchmark test because they are usually so close it doesn't matter int the real world. both the p4 and xp and a64 chips are fast, bar none.

like another postes stated, you might just want to do another dell because unless you are into gaming or a couple of other areas that require you to really tweak on the machine you won't really benefit, other than knowledge. those $500-$800 dell packages are pretty sweet for basic stuff.
Link Posted: 9/18/2004 10:28:45 PM EST

Originally Posted By bob332:
like another postes stated, you might just want to do another dell because unless you are into gaming or a couple of other areas that require you to really tweak on the machine you won't really benefit, other than knowledge. those $500-$800 dell packages are pretty sweet for basic stuff.



Talking at my univeristy computer help desk, it seems like Dell quality has gone down hill since I got mine., I can not get one, nearly as high performance, from Dell with in the same price range.

I'm building one retgardless, thanks for all the tips.

Whats a static strap?
Link Posted: 9/18/2004 11:42:15 PM EST
A little strap that grounds you to the computer you are working on. I never used one... and I never had a problem.

-db
Link Posted: 9/19/2004 1:17:18 AM EST

Originally Posted By THellURider:

Originally Posted By bob332:
like another postes stated, you might just want to do another dell because unless you are into gaming or a couple of other areas that require you to really tweak on the machine you won't really benefit, other than knowledge. those $500-$800 dell packages are pretty sweet for basic stuff.



Talking at my univeristy computer help desk, it seems like Dell quality has gone down hill since I got mine., I can not get one, nearly as high performance, from Dell with in the same price range.

I'm building one retgardless, thanks for all the tips.

Whats a static strap?



it you are going to build your own, good deal :) it is fun, but can be frustrating. what games would you be playing?
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