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Budget build for a friend with a dinosaur

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone! This is my first post, but I've been lurking here since November to research for my sig rig. It was actually my first full build (I have done numerous upgrades) and I really enjoyed it.

Now my friends want in! One enlisted my assistance last night in his quest for a new rig, and he's on a tight budget. Here's what he currently has:

HP Pavilion a1129n
Athlon 64 3400+ (2.2GHz single-core)
2.5GB DDR PC3200
250GB HDD (also 500GB external for data storage)
Windows XP
~17" LCD Monitor (VGA only)


Like most people, his primary uses are office software and internet usage. He does not game, but he likes video editing as a casual hobby. It isn't likely that the machine will ever be upgraded, and it will probably be used for four or five years.

His budget is $500-600, and here's what I whipped up in fifteen minutes (newegg prices):

$100 Athlon II x4 640
$40 G.Skill 4GB DDR3 1333MHz
$60 ASRock M3A770DE
$65 Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB
$60 Antec EarthWatts Green 430W
$60 Antec Three Hundred
$19 ASUS DVD Burner
$100 Windows 7 64-bit Home Premium OEM

Subtotal of $504. I know that I can probably get some combo deals and save a big chunk of change, but I'd rather not base an estimate on something that may or may not be available at time of purchase. Just about everything would be worth modifying for the right deal, this is just a baseline. I also suggested that, if he can manage to stretch his budget (which will be easier with combos and sales), he should buy a video card (such as the Radeon 4650 for ~$50) and a 19"-20" monitor. After all, that's what you spend most of the time looking at.

Just wanted to get some input from the more experienced among you. Specifically, would he be better off with a dual core or three core? I'm not sure the longevity trade-off is worth the $20 savings. I also doubt an SSD can fit in here...
My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5-2500k ASUS P8P67 B3 Sapphire Radeon HD 6850 1GB GDDR5 G.Skill 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1600MHz 7-8-7-24 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 7200RPM Lite-On 24x DVD Burner Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit HP 2310m 
PowerCase
NZXT Hale 90 650W NZXT Phantom White 
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My System
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i5-2500k ASUS P8P67 B3 Sapphire Radeon HD 6850 1GB GDDR5 G.Skill 4GB (2x2GB) DDR3 1600MHz 7-8-7-24 
Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 7200RPM Lite-On 24x DVD Burner Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit HP 2310m 
PowerCase
NZXT Hale 90 650W NZXT Phantom White 
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post #2 of 27
sound bundle there mate, keep the quad core dont wack it down to a tri or dual core, least with the quad core it will keep up with what ever they want 4gb kit isnt bad but maby try getting some corsair ram and maby a better psu but antecs are pretty good so no real need to but that will do nicely
post #3 of 27
Kingston HyperX $45, $20 AR back in stock but the deal expires at midnight today! Be quick!! Much better memory deal
You may also want to opt for Phenom II x4 820, 4MB L3 cache advantage for $5 more and probably overclocks better despite C2 revision, x4 640 really doesn't overclock well at all - in fact my friend hit a wall at a lowly 3.5Ghz on it

Also, for video editing get two HDDs - even if the second one is smaller - simply for the purpose of having video files/program on one HDD, pagefile on the other. This significantly speeds things up (see purple link in sig)

Antec 300 very poor case choice for that price also, no cable management and it's a massive $60! I got it for $10 AR before but I would only ever buy one at that price. Rosewill Destroyer for $40, shipped, would be a significantly better deal. Excellent cable management, black interior, 3 fans...

For the same $60 price you can get this Rosewill 630W Green Edition. Don't be fooled by Rosewill name, their units are usually not decent but this one is according to OCN experts.
Edited by xd_1771 - 2/28/11 at 5:10pm
post #4 of 27
no , no , no and no
Mobo 90$ (good board , got HD 4290 onboard)
CPU 110$
Memory 45$
PSU 35$
HDD 40$
ODD 17$ shipped with promo code
Case 40$ shipped with promo code
Win7 100$
486$ =o
Diablo 3 24/7
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core Pentium G850 GIGABYTE Z68A-D3H-B3 Sapphire HD 6770 4x2GB KVR1333D3N9/2G 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 Samsung SH-S223B Zalman CNPS5X Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
AOC E2243FW LED 21.5'' 5ms  Razer Arctosa Black Seasonic SS-600ET Sharkoon T9 Value Black  
MouseMouse PadAudio
Razer DeathAdder Black Edition Roccat Sota Granular Razer Electra Essential 
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Diablo 3 24/7
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core Pentium G850 GIGABYTE Z68A-D3H-B3 Sapphire HD 6770 4x2GB KVR1333D3N9/2G 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Crucial M4 CT064M4SSD2 Samsung SH-S223B Zalman CNPS5X Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
AOC E2243FW LED 21.5'' 5ms  Razer Arctosa Black Seasonic SS-600ET Sharkoon T9 Value Black  
MouseMouse PadAudio
Razer DeathAdder Black Edition Roccat Sota Granular Razer Electra Essential 
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post #5 of 27
Antec NeoECO 400C is on sale for $35, much cheaper than the Antec Earthwatts EA430D and a slightly better unit.
post #6 of 27
Doesn't video editing require some sort of decent graphics card. If he's not doing a lot of editing I don't see the point of the quad core.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750@ 3.8ghz 24/7 folding EVGA P55 SLI PNY GTS 250 1GB Corsair 4GB (2X2GB) DDR3 1600 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
WD 320GB 7200RPM, 16MB Windows 7 64bit Ultimate Dell 19" Dell 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 400CX CM HAF 922 Dell 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 750@ 3.8ghz 24/7 folding EVGA P55 SLI PNY GTS 250 1GB Corsair 4GB (2X2GB) DDR3 1600 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
WD 320GB 7200RPM, 16MB Windows 7 64bit Ultimate Dell 19" Dell 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 400CX CM HAF 922 Dell 
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post #7 of 27
Looking really good. Definitely try to take advantage of specials/combos where possible. On newegg, most specials/combos expire at the end of the month, so here in a few hours the cost to build a machine will rise a good 20%, wait 3 weeks and a slew of new specials/combos will have invaded the egg. Timing purchases from the egg to be in the last 2 weeks of the month is usually best.

Build considerations:

The 770 chip-set doesn't have built in video, so you would have to pick up a GPU to use that board. Even though the system is not intended for gaming, you should try to incorporate a low power video board anyways ($50 or less). It will improve overall system performance.

The Spinpoint F3 is an excellent choice. Often they go on special for ~$55 so keep your eyes peeled. Also look at Seagate Barracuda and WD Black 1TB drives, go with whichever is available with a promo or combo discount ideally.

Windows is always available in combo specials, don't leave that money on the table. As an example, right now, windows home 7 is available in a $25 off combo special with a Phenom X6 1055T, and there is a 6% off promo code that works in conjunction with the combo special for the 1055T. It's like getting a 1055T for $145. For video editing, this would be a very good move... Of course, this will likely expire tonight.

XD_1771 will be along to tell you your ram choice makes him sick to his stomach any moment now... I'd say go with whatever you can find cheapest, but try to make it 8GB (2x4GB kit) or more instead of just 4GB for a video editing machine. Your friend will thank you in the long run. Quantity will provide more performance than speed or timings for this application. If you can spring for 1600MHZ stuff that's great, if not, it's not the end of the world.

There are very good cases often sold on special for ~$40 at the egg. Right now it's the HEC Blitz and RoseWill destroyer, both great cases for that price point and free shipping. You can save money on this part of the build.
     
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 990X EVO R2.0 Sparkle GTX460 768MB ballistix tactical 2 x 8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Toshiiba THNSNH 256GB Enterprise RE3 1TB Asus BD combo drive Artic A30 
OSMonitorMonitorMonitor
Manjaro Linux Samsung 21.5" LCD E2009WFP E2009WFP 
PowerCase
Seasonic G 550W Modular Fractal Design Core 3500 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-6300, 4.7 GHZ@1.43V GA-970A-UD3P GTX 460 768MB Mixed DIMMs. 2x4GB + 2x8GB @ 1600-8-8-8 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Toshiba THNSNH 19nm 256GB 1TB Spinpoint F3 WD RE3 1TB WD RE3 1TB 
Optical DriveCoolingOSOS
yes CM Seidon 120V SolydK OpenSuse 13.1 
OSOSMonitorMonitor
Linux Mint 9-32 bit // Linux Mint 17-64 bit  Manjaro Xfce Samsung 21.5" HannsG 21.5" sideways! 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Sticky ATNG Rosewill Green 630W NZXT Gamma Basic Microsoft corded 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
A10-6800k 4.8GHZ @ 1.375V, 1.2GHZ iGPU Gigabyte GA-F2A85XN-WIFI HD8670D Ripjaws 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Seagate ST1000DM003 Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Zalman CNPS5X Linux Mint 15 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
LG IPS224V-PN Logitec K360 FSP 400W Aurum S 80+ gold Prodigy 
Mouse
logitec M235 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 990X EVO R2.0 Sparkle GTX460 768MB ballistix tactical 2 x 8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Toshiiba THNSNH 256GB Enterprise RE3 1TB Asus BD combo drive Artic A30 
OSMonitorMonitorMonitor
Manjaro Linux Samsung 21.5" LCD E2009WFP E2009WFP 
PowerCase
Seasonic G 550W Modular Fractal Design Core 3500 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-6300, 4.7 GHZ@1.43V GA-970A-UD3P GTX 460 768MB Mixed DIMMs. 2x4GB + 2x8GB @ 1600-8-8-8 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Toshiba THNSNH 19nm 256GB 1TB Spinpoint F3 WD RE3 1TB WD RE3 1TB 
Optical DriveCoolingOSOS
yes CM Seidon 120V SolydK OpenSuse 13.1 
OSOSMonitorMonitor
Linux Mint 9-32 bit // Linux Mint 17-64 bit  Manjaro Xfce Samsung 21.5" HannsG 21.5" sideways! 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Sticky ATNG Rosewill Green 630W NZXT Gamma Basic Microsoft corded 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
A10-6800k 4.8GHZ @ 1.375V, 1.2GHZ iGPU Gigabyte GA-F2A85XN-WIFI HD8670D Ripjaws 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Seagate ST1000DM003 Asus BC-12B1ST/BLK/B/AS Zalman CNPS5X Linux Mint 15 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
LG IPS224V-PN Logitec K360 FSP 400W Aurum S 80+ gold Prodigy 
Mouse
logitec M235 
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post #8 of 27
I've already been here
The HyperX RAM I suggested (but will be out of stock @ sale price soon) can have 2 rebates sent in, instead of the usual 1/customer most rebates impose. You can get 4x2GB for $50 AR!
post #9 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by ninjaburrito View Post
Doesn't video editing require some sort of decent graphics card. If he's not doing a lot of editing I don't see the point of the quad core.
Video editing is fine with any card capable of 1080p playback.
post #10 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phaedrus2129 View Post
Video editing is fine with any card capable of 1080p playback.
This, most apps (such as Sony Vegas) are still primarily CPU accelerated. Some apps that use, say, nVidia CUDA may benefit from a better video card, i.e. MotionDSP vReveal, which is a different & unique video enhancer program that uses CUDA acceleration to help with enhancing/upscaling videos. It works really well. But once again most video editing still CPU accelerated. If you're using Adobe CS5 or something that is GPU accelerated in lots of places, invest in GPU.
Edited by xd_1771 - 2/28/11 at 6:11pm
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