Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Custom-built Computer

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Custom-built Computer

    I'm planning on building a computer within the next few months (actually, my friend is building it for me using my money because he knows a ton more about building them than I do as he's already built one) and I wanted some opinions on pricing considering many here are very computer savvy.

    Basically I need the whole computer. Monitor, keyboard, mouse, Windows, tower and all of its accessories. What I plan to do with this computer is basically gaming but this will be a computer I'll have for my college career (basically for the next five years, junior in HS now) so I'll want to be able to do plenty of academic-related activies on it as well.

    Also I want it to be able to play current games (Half-Life 2) as well as games coming out in the future. So I suppose I want a computer that will last me for five years and is solid for gaming and academic purposes and will be fairly inexpensive to maintain and upgrade as the years go by.

    What I'm wondering if this is possible with a $1,000 budget?

    Thanks for all input.


  • #2
    I was able to build my computer for $1400 (everything included, monitor, keyboard, mouse, speaker system, etc.). My pc can run Half Life 2 on high quality with everything turned to max.

    I'd reccomend checking out www.pricewatch.com and www.newegg.com and see what the prices are for the stuff you want.

    You wont be able to build a good enough computer for under $1000 to be able to play all of the latest games (FEAR and Black and White 2 come to mind) but it should run them somewhat decent on medium-low quality.

    For a video card, I'd seriously reccomend a Radeon 9600 or higher (I have a 256MB 9600, and like I said before, runs HL2 on everything high). For processor, go for an AMD 64 3000+ or 3200+ as they are fairly cheap these days (less than $200 I believe). For motherboard, I have an nForce3 board but I'd reccomend leaving that up to your friend or waiting for someone else here to reply as they probably know more about motherboard than I do.

    Will you be buying a speaker system? If so, go for an Audigy 2 sound card (any version should be fine, unless you're an audio nut ). If not, then a cheap sound card should work fine or you can stick with an integrated sound card with your motherboard (I wouldn't reccomend that )

    Hard drive space really depends on what you'll be using it for... obviously games, but will you be doing video editing? Photoshopping? Downloading a lot of files? If so, go for something like 200GB and up, if not, stick with a 160GB, that should be fine for a year or two provided you don't download too much Many games nowadays are 2+GB so with a 160GB drive you can install all the latest games (Half Life 2, FEAR, Black and White 2, Unreal Tournament 2004) and still have room for plenty of files and programs.

    Anyways, for memory, get at least 1GB of RAM. I have 1GB of Corsair XMS RAM, not sure the exact type (I'd have to look it up... go ahead and say it, I'm a n00b ). I haven't had any problems with them so far...

    Umm... I think that's all... monitor, keyboard, and mouse is obviously up to what you prefer and your budget... PC Case is up to you as well, just be sure it isn't a specialty case and its ATX (I think thats the right name).

    Oh, and dont forget your CD/DVD drive, printer, scanner, and/or speaker set

    MGM out

    Comment


    • #3
      Firingsquad has a pretty good guide to building a $1000 PC.

      Check it out:
      http://www.firingsquad.com/guides/bu...get_gaming_pc/

      If you want to play modern games on this PC, then you really need to foucs on getting a good video card.

      I don't know if you have a prefrence when it comes to AMD & Intel...Both are good, but in the end, you will save money going with an AMD processor that will give you great performance compared to Intel. (My main systems are a Pentium 4 3.06 GHz, and an Athlon 64 3400+, and the AMD usually outperforms)

      Also, when you shop, AVOID pricewatch.com. Many sites listed there are home-made and unreliable. Stick to reputable sites like www.newegg.com and www.zipzoomfly.com. And before you buy anything from a site, check out their ratings at www.resellerratings.com
      Webmaster / Administrator
      www.MegaGames.com
      www.MGForums.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Things I would consider:
        • If you are buying parts now, I would look into an AMD system. Price to power, AMD is the leader right now. Possibly a 3200+.
        • Depending on what motherboard you go with, I would look at ASUS, Abit, DFI, and MSI. Motherboards are becoming processor picky these days considering the great differences in chipsets. You'll probably end up with an AMD machine, so look for a nForce chipset. I've had two bad experiences with VIA based boards.
        • I would suggest 1 GB of quality memory. Since your starting out with a PC, I wouldn't waste money on buying high spec memory. Something around the PC3200 range. Consider Corsair, OCz, Kingston, or Mushkin. Memory has a longer life span than most PC peripherals so investing in something decent is smart.
        • As for a video card, I would stray away from the ATi 9xxx and the NVidia 5xxx generation. Although my ATi 9800XT is a good card, it’s just now starting to slug in the most recent games. Something like an Nvidia 6600GT or a 6800 regular would make sense.
        • A lot of people might disagree, but invest in a good PSU. It's something you never replace so making sure you buy a quality power supply unit is a must. I've had to many friends with cheap PSU's fry their components. 400 watts should be fine.
        • The rest of the components are pretty easily decided. Hard drives are pretty much all the same. Look for a good warranty and something in the 7200rpm range or above.
        Be sure to shop online. Local retailers like Best Buy, CompUSA, etc are all over priced and provide no sort of advantage considering most online retailers have awesome return policies.
        Trent Gillespie Mod Theater Gillespie Photography

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Vile
          Firingsquad has a pretty good guide to building a $1000 PC.

          Check it out:
          http://www.firingsquad.com/guides/bu...get_gaming_pc/
          Good article, but that price does not include about $300 of the components he needs: monitor, operating system, keyboard, and mouse. While a decent video card is needed, the best is a poor investment. Video cards, just like CPUs, have a very short life span. I would sit back, buy something from the Nvidia 6xxx generation and then wait for ATi and Nvidia to get their acts straight once again.
          Trent Gillespie Mod Theater Gillespie Photography

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Vile
            Also, when you shop, AVOID pricewatch.com. Many sites listed there are home-made and unreliable. Stick to reputable sites like www.newegg.com and www.zipzoomfly.com. And before you buy anything from a site, check out their ratings at www.resellerratings.com
            Hmm... never heard that before... then again, I never actually used pricewatch to buy things before... I usually just stick to newegg and amazon...

            MGM out

            Comment


            • #7
              Here's a rough draft of what I'm buying (possibly still some changes depending on what is said here, and if I didn't miss anything):

              Also, anyone know how much shipping this'll be?

              Part: Processor: AMD Athlon 64 3400+ / 512KB Cache / 1600MHz FSB / Socket 754 / Processor
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...p?EdpNo=698446
              Price: $230.00

              Part: Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-K8NS nVidia Socket 754 ATX Motherboard / Audio / AGP 8x/4x / 10/100 Ethernet LAN / USB 2.0 / Serial ATA
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...194271&CatId=0
              Price: $65.00

              Part: Memory: Corsair Value Select 512MB PC3200 DDR 400MHz CL2.5
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...9468&CatId=147
              Price: $50.00

              Part: Mouse
              URL: -------
              Price: $20.00

              Part: Monitor: ThinkVision /19-Inch /1600 x 1200 0.26mm / Pure Flat Black CRT Monitor Off-Lease
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...2820&CatId=169
              Price: $90.00

              Part: Harddrive: Seagate / 80GB / 7200 / 8MB / SATA-150 / OEM / Hard Drive
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...p?EdpNo=576587
              Price: $68.00

              Part: CD Drive: Plextor PX-230A/SW-BL / 52x32x52x CD-RW / Internal / Black / CD Burner
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...212079&CatId=0
              Price: $50.00

              Part: Case w/ Power Supply: Ultra UV Wizard Black ATX Mid-Tower Case with UV Reactive Clear Side, Front USB & Firewire Ports and Ultra X-Connect 500-Watt Power Supply
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...Tab=0&NoMapp=0
              Price: $90.00

              Part: Keyboard: GrandTec Virtually Indestructible Keyboard USB Black
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...0135&CatId=533
              Price: $17.00

              Part: Graphics Card: eVGA GeForce 6800 Video Card / 128MB DDR / AGP 8X / TV Out & DVI
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...009366&CatId=0
              Price: $180.00

              Part: Floppy Drive
              URL: -------
              Price: $20.00

              Part: CPU Cooling Fan: Thermaltake / Socket 754/939 / Copper Heatpipe / for AMD Athlon 64 and 64 FX55 / Ball Bearing / CPU Cooling Fan
              URL: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...389576&CatId=0
              Price: $33.00

              Part: Half-Life 2: Valve Complete Pack
              URL: http://storefront.steampowered.com/v...=0&i=&a=92,219
              Price: $80.00

              ---------------------
              Budget: $1000.00
              Total Spent: $993.00
              Remaining: $7.00

              Comment


              • #8
                TigerDirect is not the most reliable retailer, and is notoriously unreliable for rebates. You might want to try a site like Newegg or ZipZoomFly.
                --filburt1, vBulletin.org/vBulletinTemplates.com moderator
                Web Design Forums.net: vB Board of the Month
                vBulletin Mail System (vBMS): webmail for your forum users

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you are going to buy parts, make sure they are not faked pass certified. They are cheaper, but could interfere with other electronics.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by filburt1
                    TigerDirect is not the most reliable retailer, and is notoriously unreliable for rebates. You might want to try a site like Newegg or ZipZoomFly.
                    This is definitely true.

                    TigerDirect failed to send me ~ $200 in mail in rebates, so I always avioid them. (And yes, I filled out all the paperwork, sent it with everything on time)

                    I see that the products you linked to have ~ $50 in MIR' so you will save a little going with them right now, but you'll pay for it in the long run, trust me.
                    Last edited by Vile; Thu 27 Oct '05, 8:40pm.
                    Webmaster / Administrator
                    www.MegaGames.com
                    www.MGForums.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Meh... I would also really go for 1GB of RAM if you want to play the latest games... Half Life 2 will run fine on your system, but games like Black and White 2, FEAR, The Sims 2, and other upcoming titles will have a hard time without a lot of RAM and a good video card (although yours is near high-quality so it should be fine video card-wise)

                      MGM out

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MGM
                        Meh... I would also really go for 1GB of RAM if you want to play the latest games... Half Life 2 will run fine on your system, but games like Black and White 2, FEAR, The Sims 2, and other upcoming titles will have a hard time without a lot of RAM and a good video card (although yours is near high-quality so it should be fine video card-wise)

                        MGM out
                        1 GB absolute minimum for even normal Windows usage is expected today. 2 GB of RAM is very useful for gaming now too with such complex games as FEAR.

                        I have a Geforce 6800 too, but nowadays I would consider a 7800GT or 6800 Ultra. My 6800 is going to fear running FEAR. I'm clever.
                        --filburt1, vBulletin.org/vBulletinTemplates.com moderator
                        Web Design Forums.net: vB Board of the Month
                        vBulletin Mail System (vBMS): webmail for your forum users

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          The setup looks good. You can always upgrade your memory at a later time, and 512 will skim you through, but you'll probably want 1GB sooner or later. Everything looks stellar but be warned that TigerDirect has been known to short change people on rebates. In some cases its not TigerDirect's fault, but the common consensus is that they are a very difficult retailer to deal with. Both NewEgg and ZipZoomFly might be a little more in price, but their service has been worth it, and thats from personal experience. I also wouldn't limit yourself to one retailer.

                          If I could change one thing, it would be the socket 754 board and processor. You might consider down grading your processor speed just to get a socket 939. You'll probably see a speed increase regardless of clock speed decrease.
                          Trent Gillespie Mod Theater Gillespie Photography

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by filburt1
                            1 GB absolute minimum for even normal Windows usage is expected today. 2 GB of RAM is very useful for gaming now too with such complex games as FEAR.

                            I have a Geforce 6800 too, but nowadays I would consider a 7800GT or 6800 Ultra. My 6800 is going to fear running FEAR. I'm clever.
                            1 GB is not absolute minimum. I ran 512 up until about a year ago and didnt notice one bit of difference in regular day to day activities. Only in games did I notice less paging or pauses. If your running a bunch of background services, 1GB might be minimum, but 512 will suffice just fine. I run FEAR just fine with 1GB.

                            As for the video card. If you have a PC geek friend, I would definitely consider buying the 256MB version of the 6800. The 256 version has locked pipes that can be unlocked with a bios flash resulting in a marginal performance increase. The performance increase is marginal enough to put forth the effort. Overclocking your CPU/GPU's clock speed is pretty much useless though.
                            Trent Gillespie Mod Theater Gillespie Photography

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              512 runs fine for me in Windows mode, soon as I [play games it just doesn't live up.

                              I'm running on an 8500 still (old ati, but reliable) X700's are cheap and not that bad (read several reviews recently) and they beat out the equivlant nvidia cards

                              Comment

                              widgetinstance 262 (Related Topics) skipped due to lack of content & hide_module_if_empty option.
                              Working...
                              X