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  1. #1
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    Doing a budget PC build. Pros please weigh in

    Got a bunch of Amazon credit from trading in textbooks, so I want to re-build my desktop on a budget. I just want it to be faster and quieter than my current circa 2006 comp. I really only surf the internet, watch Netflix, and use microsoft office stuff. I already have a new power supply and will re-use my old case if possible. Might even build a new one, who knows. Probably will go with Windows 7.

    If anyone has the time, can you tell me if this stuff will suit my needs and fit together? And if I'm missing anything? I really appreciate it!

    Western Digital 1TB SATA drive
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0088PUEPK/...=IBO1Z3BGLA5R4

    Kingston 2x4GB DDR3 memory
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0057Q4ADU/...I3G9L9W6W3N0R2

    Asus GeForce 1gb silent video card
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004I5UDO6/...=IGQR23VQO7MDO

    And I'm looking at either this Biostar Motherboard with AMD CPU combo or the comparable Asus with Intel. AMD vs Intel I have no knowledge about. The MB's are the same specs I believe. 16gb max memory.
    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009SQQHJ0/...I2S47XS78CR9B6

  2. #2
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    Just get a Mac Mini. Perfect, no hassle solution for what you want.
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  3. #3
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    A good suggestion, but it's a little more than I'd like to spend, and I'm really not a fan of apple products.

  4. #4
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    this is the first time my dad didnt have me build his pc i told him it will be way cheaper just to buy this http://www.amazon.com/Gateway-SX2865.../dp/B00CP18XDI he got it for 299.hect it cost me 90 just for the os.then ya have the mobo cpu vid card rasm harddrive etc etc. ps id never ever ever build a pc witha old spining drive ssd is the only way to go

  5. #5
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    I'm going to wait on the ssd until they get a bit cheaper, but I will think about that gateway. My last gateway lasted forever... Of course it was like 2 grand in 1998.

  6. #6
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    make sure ya get it at frys cheaper then amazon http://www.frys.com/product/7717398?...%20date:121613 .ps ssd is the biggest improvement you can make to a pc for the money

  7. #7
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    My last Gateway was the last of 5 replaced all under warranty. Gateway sucks.

    I'd go look at house brand from Microcenter.

  8. #8
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    the cool thing is dad giveing me the last pc i built for him and it has a cool thermal take case the cpu is only a first get i3

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve B. View Post
    I'd go look at house brand from Microcenter.
    That's what I have now, as was my last one... Probably wouldn't buy again.

  10. #10
    Senior Member mikeybikes's Avatar
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    In my opinion, it is difficult to beat the price of budget PCs when building your own, especially if you factor in the cost of a Windows license.

    Having said that... I would get the Asus w/ Intel. My last Biostar motherboard left me unimpressed.

    You could probably also save money by buying a CPU and motherboard with integrated graphics.

    As for the Gateway, just remember Gateway's consumer PC division was acquired by Acer. I'm not sure if that is good or bad.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member tizeye's Avatar
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    +1 on the motherboard/CPU combo with integrated graphics. All the budget PC's come that way. What you save vs building and purchasing the OS, can then get a better video card than the NVidia 200 series when current generation is 700 series. I thought my 460SE was old!

    Three years ago I built a Core i7 machine on an MSI motherboard (Asus, Gigabyte, and MSI are my favorites) and last year further upgraded adding the SSD. Based on it's specs, was going to attempt to add another dedicated harddrive and create a Hackintosh. Abandoned that when I learned that there were issues with the New OSX Mavericks, and would have to start with Mountain Lion. But it was an idea.

    Looked at building a Core i5 to upgrade my wife's older AMD based PC, but I could buy a similar spec PC cheaper, but no dedicated video.
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  12. #12
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenzFanatic View Post
    A good suggestion, but it's a little more than I'd like to spend
    I just looked - they are a little more expensive than they used to be. Didn't know they went up. They used to be like $399.
    Oh well.

    I used to build PCs back in college (early 2000's) and ordered so much stuff from Newegg, and Pricewatch (I don't even know if that's still around anymore lol).
    I was always impressed with the MSI motherboards I ordered with AMD chips. Not sure if MSI still even makes mobos or not?
    You probbaly don't have to worry about most stuff going together since everything is basically a standard ATX size and you just need to figure out how many PCIe slots you have and what kind of RAM goes with the MB - which you can find on the website or its manual most likely.
    I always bought my RAM from Crucial, never thought of Amazon - of course this was before Amazon was a 'buy everything' website.
    Heck, the last time I built up a computer from scratch was just about when PCIe was starting to show up on MBs. and I still had ones that had AGP slots.
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  13. #13
    The Rock Cycle eofelis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenzFanatic View Post
    We replaced hard drives in both of our desktop PCs recently. The first one had a hard drive failure and we replaced it with a Western Digital 1TB hard drive. The first HD we got (from Office Depot) was defective, wouldn't format or load Windows at all, and we had to exchange it (OD was good about it). I suppose that could happen to any hard drive you buy.

    The other PC had a noisy hard drive so we decided to swap it out before it failed. We got a 1TB Seagate hard drive. Seagate has good support on their website and a DiskWizard that worked great for cloning the new hard drive from the old one. It took less than an hour to completely copy the OS, files, settings, etc from the old unit to the new unit. We would get a Seagate again next time.
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  14. #14
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    Thanks all. All good feedback

  15. #15
    Trek 500 Kid Zinger's Avatar
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    No PC pro here but: Yeah Newegg is still there. I bought mine through work though and got a better deal.

    I'd consider one of the better Dells loaded with Windows 7 already. I've heard bad things about their bottom of the line PCs. Only problem is some of my favorite video software either doesn't work with the new 64 bit systems or crashes now and then. I might have gone with 32 bit if I'd only known. But I'm sure I'll come across some newer bootleg Premiere or something eventually. I can manage with my old MGI but I do have issues with it on a 64 bit system.....And the timeline sucks to work with.

    And that's the problem with Macs.....not enough freeware or bootleg software around for those.
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  16. #16
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zinger View Post

    And that's the problem with Macs.....not enough freeware or bootleg software around for those.
    as an Apple convert since 2003, I can safely say you don't need it. They just made their latest version of OSX (Mavericks) available for FREE. Windows would never do that. And there is plenty of bootleg stuff out there, same as for Windows, especially these days since Macs are much much more prolific. And plenty of freeware too. Trust me, I'm a cheapskate.

    (also they're beautiful, and the all-in-one iMacs are such a space saver. I'm so glad I don't have a separate tower/monitor with all the cables hanging everywhere)
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  17. #17
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    and hopefully that's as far as the apple debate will go in this thread.

  18. #18
    Trek 500 Kid Zinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the sci guy View Post
    as an Apple convert since 2003, I can safely say you don't need it. They just made their latest version of OSX (Mavericks) available for FREE. Windows would never do that. And there is plenty of bootleg stuff out there, same as for Windows, especially these days since Macs are much much more prolific. And plenty of freeware too. Trust me, I'm a cheapskate.

    (also they're beautiful, and the all-in-one iMacs are such a space saver. I'm so glad I don't have a separate tower/monitor with all the cables hanging everywhere)
    Well you're no doubt right. I acquired most of my old software around 2000 or so and it was a little different then. Plus I rely on the geeks I work with for stuff like that and only one coworker is a Mac head.

    Anymore you get the OS with the windows platform PC as well. And you just make the backup disk and the OS boot disk off your PC first thing when you get it.

    One of the geeks that I get my advice from in these matters thinks highly of Asus but it's been years since I owned one of their motherboards. I used to put my own PCs together since the 286 days. Especially when I started doing video with a Pentium 1 and used SCSI drives. Anymore the transfer rates are so high SCSI really isn't necessary so I just buy a new machine for cheaper than I could ever put one together.

    If you're putting your own PC together do not cut costs with memory. Some of the cut rate memory out there will give you problems. You should order the stuff you know is good.
    Last edited by Zinger; 12-20-13 at 02:56 AM.
    "I never lost a race because my bike was too heavy".......George Mount

  19. #19
    Fax Transport Specialist black_box's Avatar
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    SSDs are fantastic. But yes, on a small budget it is tough to beat the off-the-shelf deals.

  20. #20
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    My buddy was saying about SSD's that his games load too quickly, so now he can't do anything else whilst playing games.

    And yea, I won't buy any off-brand memory.

  21. #21
    Senior Member catonec's Avatar
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    Asus mother boards are your best option.

    I had always used amd but my current build is an i7. quite impressed.

    kingston ram is great stuff. use the highest speed your board can handle. give it at least half of its max capacity.

    1tb is a ridiculous amount of storage no need for it.

    onboard video is ok but Ive always used a real video card. Ive always used nvidia but this current build I have a radeon 7900 3gb holy kick ass.
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  22. #22
    bill nyecycles the sci guy's Avatar
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    on board video is only worthwhile if you never plan on watching HD movies, or playing video games.

    1 TB isn't as ridiculous as you might think these days. You can never have too much storage space. Games these days take up gigs upon gigs. Not to mention your media, backups, etc etc.

    I got a 2TB external from Amazon for around $100.

    I always used Western Digital HDDs in my builds. They were always solid and trustworthy. Never had good results with Maxtor.
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  23. #23
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    Yea a TB really isn't that much anymore. IMO there's no sense in buying half the storage for like 2/3+ the price. Plus, my current drives are like 10 years old, and I'm a big fan of preventative maintenance.

    and oh yea, I never linked to the asus MB. It's the version without HDMI, but that I don't need, and easy enough to upgrade. I don't think it says, is this integrated graphics or do I need to buy a card? http://www.amazon.com/Asus-Celeron-M...us+c8hm70+hdmi

  24. #24
    Senior Member catonec's Avatar
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    yes it is an asus but very low end. Its apparent that cost is your main concern. I would not use this mb or processor but then again Im a gamer.

    it does have a pci-e 16 slot, it also says that it has a vga slot. most likely no on board video.

    mini itx, is that the proper form factor for your case??
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  25. #25
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    Yea cost is the main factor for this build, but I've never needed a particularly good computer. Just functional. Hoping to keep it in the $300 range. Going to test my woodworking skills and try to build a wood case for its sound/vibration dampening qualities. For the motherboard/cpu combo I'm willing to spend up to maybe $150...But part of me wants to see how cheaply I can get away with it, lol. I'll at least upgrade to the intel i5 at some point if I buy that asus.

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