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Old 07-28-2008, 03:12 AM   #1
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Default Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

Hey everyone,

So I have a $500-650 budget and I decided to try and make my own computer with a lot of outside help.

I've got the components picked, but keep in mind that this is my first computer so suggestions would be fantastic. The computer is designed for multitasking, meant to do a lot of academic/journalism/accounting work, whenever that ends up being. I want it to last me through college, so roughly four years. I also want it for casual media/gaming, and a lot of music and video storage. Will the motherboard let me add a graphics card? Considering it.

Here's what I got, feel free to suggest anything and let me know if I left anything out. And please let me know if all of this stuff is compatible. I research my way to splitting a headache, and I'm still really unsure. Thanks!

Processor
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600+ Brisbane 2.9GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 65W Dual-Core Processor

Motherboard
GIGABYTE GA-MA78GM-S2H AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

Memory
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

Hard Drive
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM

DVD/CD
ASUS Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 14X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 20X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe

Case / Fan / Power Supply
Antec Sonata III 500 Black 0.8mm cold rolled steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case 500W Power Supply
Real unsure about the case and whether or not I need more fans, if the power supply is enough, will the motherboard, DVD/CD, and other hardware fit? Thanks again!
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:44 AM   #2
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

welcome to the forums.

everything looks great. everything should work and fit together.
but i would choose a different motherboard, and case. But thats just me.
i would choose a different motherboard is because its an microATX board, and it will be hard to work on if you have fairly big hands, and for the case, it doesnt have much good airflow, so if you want to game in like high settings, or OC, it might be hard since it will overheat easier, but the PSU that comes with it is great. Antec makes great PSUs.

I will try a different build and post some links later as suggestions, and what i would choose with a budget of $500-$650.

Oh yeah, do you already have a monitor and the accessories needed (keyboard, mouse)

EDIT -

Processor - $66.00
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Brisbane 2.6GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 65W Dual-Core Processor

Motherboard - $94.99
MSI K9A2 CF-F V2 AM2+/AM2 AMD 790X ATX AMD Motherboard

Memory - $84.99 ($5 more for CAS4)
G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

Hard Drive - $89.99
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

DVD/CD - $29.99
ASUS Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 14X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 20X DVD±R DVD Burner

Case - $44.99
COOLER MASTER Elite 330 RC-330-KKN1-GP Black SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

PSU - $59.99
Antec Basiq BP500U 500W ATX12V Version 2.01 Power Supply 100

Or the OEM - $34.99
Antec Basiq BP500UB 500W ATX12V Version 2.01 Power Supply 100

Graphics Card - $149.99
EVGA 512-P3-N801-AR GeForce 8800 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card

Total - $620.93 without shipping and without the MIR.
Its $32 to ship to my place. so i am not sure how much it will cost to ship to your place.
There's a $50 MIR

Or you can go cheaper -

Processor - $66.00
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Brisbane 2.6GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 65W Dual-Core Processor

Motherboard - $78.99
GIGABYTE GA-MA770-S3 AM2+/AM2 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard

Memory - $49.49
OCZ Platinum Revision 2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory

Hard Drive - $89.99
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive

DVD/CD - $29.99
ASUS Black 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 14X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA 20X DVD±R DVD Burner

Case - $44.99
COOLER MASTER Elite 330 RC-330-KKN1-GP Black SECC ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

PSU - $59.99
Antec Basiq BP500U 500W ATX12V Version 2.01 Power Supply 100

Or the OEM - $34.99
Antec Basiq BP500UB 500W ATX12V Version 2.01 Power Supply 100

Graphics Card - $104.99
BFG Tech BFGE96384GSOOCE GeForce 9600 GSO 384MB 192-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card

Total - $524.43 without Shipping and without the MIR
and its still $32 to ship to my place, not sure for yours.
and it has $60 MIR.

Those are my suggestions, this is like my first time helping someone build. I didnt really research those specific parts, but i know most are trusted.
You could use yours, mines, others if they post some links. Or you can mix and match.
Hope that helps.
BTW, the PSU i added to the price was the Retail and not the OEM. I dont know if all those will last for years, it should, but it will be outdated in about a year or 2.
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Old 07-28-2008, 08:42 AM   #3
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

I also want it for casual media/gaming, and a lot of music and video storage.

taking your budget into consideration, the 4850 is the best option right now for excellence in quality media and casual gaming, you may be a casual gamer, but you'll be able to play just about any game out now or in the near future with decent framerates, also, you can pick up a cheap SoundBlaster Audigy SE for about $30, it'll make your sound a lot better, onboard audio is not enough if you're gonna be playing music on your computer...
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Old 07-28-2008, 09:20 AM   #4
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

i think onboard audio is enough.
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Old 07-28-2008, 02:15 PM   #5
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Teny View Post
i think onboard audio is enough.
Definitely. Unless you are an audiophile.
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:33 PM   #6
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

since he specified there will be lots of music and videos in his original post, he's gonna want something better than onboard audio, I wouldn't classify myself as an audiophile, but even I can tell the difference with just a cheap Audigy SE compared to onboard audio...
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ME ■ I am bald and my head is lumpy...fear me ■
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Old 07-28-2008, 03:54 PM   #7
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

i listen to a lot of music and watch a lot of games, and play games a lot.
i know friends that use sound cards, one expensive one, and one cheap one, and they all sound the same to me.
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Old 07-28-2008, 08:37 PM   #8
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

I'm totally a girl

I think I'll skimp on the sound card and invest in speakers outside my monitor for now. I'll have a lot of music, but just stored I have a nice system to play it on.

I checked out that graphics card at Fry's today wol-va-rine and it definitely is nice and budget friendly, since I'm getting a graphics card I decide to spring for a different motherboard as well. I don't mind micro, I have small hands, but more upgradeability options would be nice.

I'm also thinking about springing for an Intel processor, the Intel Core 2 Duo E7200 or 8400 Wolfdale. What would you suggest? Stick with AMD? Anyone know of any motherboards that are highly upgradeable and would go well with those? Probably going to buy a custom fan and heatsink.

Definitely going to go with the cooler master case, it's the same one my boyfriend has and I love it.

My project is getting expensive :X but thank you guys for all the help!

Here's the budget mobo I'm looking at for the 8500

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813128337

GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retai

Thoughts?
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Old 07-28-2008, 09:23 PM   #9
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Libera View Post
I'm totally a girl

I think I'll skimp on the sound card and invest in speakers outside my monitor for now. I'll have a lot of music, but just stored I have a nice system to play it on.

I checked out that graphics card at Fry's today wol-va-rine and it definitely is nice and budget friendly, since I'm getting a graphics card I decide to spring for a different motherboard as well. I don't mind micro, I have small hands, but more upgradeability options would be nice.

I'm also thinking about springing for an Intel processor, the Intel Core 2 Duo E7200 or 8400 Wolfdale. What would you suggest? Stick with AMD? Anyone know of any motherboards that are highly upgradeable and would go well with those? Probably going to buy a custom fan and heatsink.

Definitely going to go with the cooler master case, it's the same one my boyfriend has and I love it.

My project is getting expensive :X but thank you guys for all the help!

Here's the budget mobo I'm looking at for the 8500



GIGABYTE GA-EP35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX Intel Motherboard - Retai

Thoughts?
oops, my bad...

Gigabyte makes very good motherboards, since you're not a heavy gamer and probably won't get two 4850s and xfire them, it's a good choice, and get the E8400, you can't "stick with AMD" with that motherboard...

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MY INTARDNET BEAST ■ Antec 300 ■ Q6600 B3, 2.8GHz @ 1.325v ■ MSI X48C Platinum ■ Kingwin XT-1264 ■ Visiontek HD 4870 512MB ■ 4x1GB Transcend aXeRam DDR3-1800 @ 1400MHz ■ WD Raptor (160GB) ■ Western Digital (250GB) ■ Samsung (640GB) ■ Seagate (500GB) ■ WD Caviar Green (1TB) ■ OCZ ProXStream 1kw ■ Sound Blaster X-Fi Platinum ■ JVC HA RX900 ■

ME ■ I am bald and my head is lumpy...fear me ■
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Old 07-28-2008, 09:35 PM   #10
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Default Re: Building my first computer, have the specs, need your opinion!

No problem, easy mistake Most college girls I know care more about their wardrobe than their electronics.

I think I'm going to upgrade even further to an 8500, only $10 more. Looks like it's Intel over AMD after all!

Gonna update first post with updated specs.
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