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Old 03-16-2005, 09:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Building a PC - Need your opinion

Hey Geeks (and non-geek),

I'm building a new PC with my brother, otherwise known as streak_56 that is low budget and still have decent performance.

Here's the specs of what we're considering.

Processor: AMD 64 3000+ 939 socket
Motherboard: Gigabyte K8NS Ultra
Memory: 2 Kingston 256 MB PC3200 DDR CAS 3
Case: RaidMax Scorpio 868
Harddrive: 1 20 GB 7200 RPM (For OS) and 1 120 Matrox 7200 RPM
Drives: 1 Floppy, 1 16X DVD Rom, 1 52x32x52x CDRW
Video: Asus V9400-x Geforce MX4000 128 MB

Also, can anybody recommend any virus scanner and spyware remover/detector/preventative? Frankly, I'm getting sick of having to try running Adware and Spybot to get rid of this shit.

I'm pretty familiar with building pcs but one question for that area, what is really the best place to build it? Right now, I'm contempting the dinning room table as the shop is too dirty and full of static.

Thanks.
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You forgot the most important question -- what's it gonna be used for?

If it's for gaming, you'll need to upgrade the videocard and RAM. If not for gaming, then everything looks fine.

-Lasereth
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Old 03-16-2005, 10:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
... a sort of licensed troubleshooter.
 
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Agreed with lasereth (a first, I'll admit). So long as it isn't for serious gaming, it seems to be more than adequate.
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Old 03-16-2005, 11:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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why not just by a dvd writer instead of the cdrw and at least leave your "backup" options open. it dosent make sense to me to buy just a cdrw anymore...
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Old 03-17-2005, 03:49 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Just out of curiosity, why are you putting such an expensive processor with otherwise inexpensive parts? You could save a lot of money going with a cheaper processor, or by spending a few hundred more get a much better performing computer (2 512mb RAM sticks, better video card, 2 bigger hard drives in RAID)

Also, why bother with the 20gb hard drive? I didn't even realize they sold hard drives that small anymore. Just install the OS on the 120GB drive.
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Old 03-17-2005, 04:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rangsk
Also, why bother with the 20gb hard drive? I didn't even realize they sold hard drives that small anymore. Just install the OS on the 120GB drive.
Well, I want to put the OS on the smaller hard drive to avoid losing data in case the computer catches a virus.

You guys got a point, I should beef up the memory. I won't be using it for a gaming machine.
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Old 03-17-2005, 06:20 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by feelgood
Well, I want to put the OS on the smaller hard drive to avoid losing data in case the computer catches a virus.

You guys got a point, I should beef up the memory. I won't be using it for a gaming machine.
Instead of buying a small hard drive, you can partition a bigger one.
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Old 03-17-2005, 08:03 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rangsk
Just out of curiosity, why are you putting such an expensive processor with otherwise inexpensive parts? You could save a lot of money going with a cheaper processor, or by spending a few hundred more get a much better performing computer (2 512mb RAM sticks, better video card, 2 bigger hard drives in RAID)

Also, why bother with the 20gb hard drive? I didn't even realize they sold hard drives that small anymore. Just install the OS on the 120GB drive.
He's right, I just didn't feel like trying to persuade him to get a lesser processor. That processor is serious overkill if it's not for gaming. Many people do not agree with me, but my beliefs do not require that they do -- a 1.0 GHz processor with 512 MB of RAM will run Windows just as fast as a 3.0 GHz processor. Only gaming and media creation will demand a faster processor. I'd settle with an Athlon XP and cheap motherboard if it's not gonna be used for gaming. Buying an Athlon 64 for a non-gaming computer is like buying a Ferrari to get groceries.

-Lasereth
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Old 03-17-2005, 08:10 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lasereth
Buying an Athlon 64 for a non-gaming computer is like buying a Ferrari to get groceries.

-Lasereth
Um... it's for the chicks.
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Old 03-17-2005, 08:47 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Feelgood, I'm with the crusty advice above. Build to purpose, stay behind the bleeding edge (unless for gaming), and upgrade bottlenecks as necessary.

Buy your favorite case to keep it "new". Pick up an orphaned box for the guts. Upgrade to finish. Nice systems regularly go for $100 on craigslist. Combine with updates and you'll save a bundle.
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Old 03-17-2005, 11:26 AM   #11 (permalink)
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You could probably even just make it a cheaper Athlon 64 by getting a socket 754. I am just guessing though, I am too lazy to look.
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Old 03-17-2005, 11:35 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Ok, after messing around with Memory Express, I've came up with the following. I changed the memory to 2 sticks of 512mb. Basically, what this computer is going to be used for is multimedia and as a programming computer since I do quite a few programming for my school work.

AMD Athlon 64 3000+
Gigabyte GA-K8NS-939
2xKingston 512MB
RaidMax Scorpio 868
Maxtor 120GB 7200rpm
LG 52x CDROM
LiteOn 52x32x52x/16x CD-RW/DVD-ROM Combo Drive

Comments?
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Old 03-17-2005, 12:39 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Which Maxtor? Check the access times. They don't lead the pack.

Just in case, the Gigabyte K8N 939 board has serial and parallel ATA. Seagate SATA drives go for 40-50cents/GB. No point in dumping nearly equal funds on PATA drives with the rest of that system. Command queuing will help your builds.
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Old 03-17-2005, 06:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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GET A DVD WRITER....spend the extra 20 bucks and just do it. you'll want to later anyway. especially if its for multimedia.
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Old 03-17-2005, 09:48 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyrnel
Just in case, the Gigabyte K8N 939 board has serial and parallel ATA. Seagate SATA drives go for 40-50cents/GB. No point in dumping nearly equal funds on PATA drives with the rest of that system. Command queuing will help your builds.
Good catch, I was looking at the IDE, not the SATA. How does the Seagate 120 7200 RPM with 8MB cache sound to you?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cycloptor
GET A DVD WRITER....spend the extra 20 bucks and just do it. you'll want to later anyway. especially if its for multimedia.
You're right, I should get a DVD-R. Will a 16x12 DVD+/-RW Dual Layer do?

Thanks for the helps guys, I couldn't get these kind of advice out of the tech support dept at where I work
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Old 03-17-2005, 10:16 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Not building many servers these days so I'm not the word on drives. The Seagate 160's I've used were measurably faster in both access and transfer than WD and Maxtor, in that order. All were SATA 7200RPM 8MB cache on the same 754 AMD 64 board (DFI LanParty). I have a Hitachi too, but didn't when I was testing. Better feel-good from the Seagates so far. YMMV.

Absolutely, get the DVD burner. Dual layer dual format drives go for $50 or less if you watch Officemax/Officedepot/Staples. The box brands are random but inside you find Benq, Liteon, or NEC most of the time. Remember you'll likely replace it in a year with Blu-Ray or whatever 100+GB format becomes the new thing.

Edit: Don't worry too much about 12 or 16x writing speeds (vs 8x). The media for high speed single layer or any dual layer is unrealistic and may not get much better before it becomes old.

Last edited by cyrnel; 03-17-2005 at 10:21 PM..
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