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Build Advice "Budget" PC - but with upgrade options.

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by pete*, 13 Aug 2010.

  1. pete*

    pete* Something witty here.

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    Right, I've been out of the loop for quite a while in terms of hardware for PC's. When I built my Core2Duo E8400 machine, the first i7's were JUST coming to our doorsteps.

    Now I find there is i3, i5, i7 of all kinds of sockets, powers and whatnot, along a whole host of AMD cpu's (Which apparently are now in contention, it's not all just intel intel intel).

    But anyway, a friend of mine has asked me to see how much it would cost her to have me build her a PC over buying one from PC World/Currys or whereever else.
    So i've listed below what she has told me and added what extra I think you may need to know to be able to inform me of the way to go.



    Budget: She said £1000 ABSOLUTE MAX for EVERYTHING - that is including O/S (Win7), Keyboard, Mouse, Monitor upto 22" and the base computer. But, I do believe even £1000 is pushing it, so as low as possible is best. It would keep her Mum happy, I know that much. haha.


    Main uses of intended build: Mainly heavy web browsing (my god does she browse :/), music and games. She plays The Sims 2 a LOT, I know that doesn't need a good PC in itself, but she has MASSES of custom stuff. But it should also play Sims3 very easily, Left 4 Dead 1and 2. She also plays a lot of older games like Caesar3, Pharoah etc - I don't know if they work on Windows 7, any thoughts on that?
    I suggested dual booting with Win XP, but I wouldn't know how to do that and she would need to buy XP aswell.


    Parts required: Case, Motherboard, CPU, Graphics Card, PSU, Soundcard (prefer not to use onboard), hdd (not a massive capacity, say 1tb max), DVD-RW Drive (+Blu Ray, not sure of prices etc or what it entails. Depends what is suggested), Extra fans if needed for case (prefer not to have to get extra ones, because good ones cost the earth.) - Anything else i've missed?
    Then the Monitor - I need a little guidance on this - I bought my Samsung SM2232BW, oooh, must be well over a year ago now and it was only £120 - I LOVE IT and it would be PERFECT for her - so if anyone knows where I can get one now or the GOOD equivalent of it now. Would be good to know. :)


    Previous build information (list details of parts): A laptop. :p N/A


    Monitor resolution: To be honest, whatever the graphics card can handle and what a good monitor is set at. 1680x1050 is decent enough for me, i'm sure it would be fine for her.


    Storage requirements: max 1TB, no need for more. She currently uses a 150gb Laptop.


    Will you be overclocking: NO - None at all.


    Any motherboard requirements (no. of USB, Xfire/SLI, fan headers): Ability to upgrade in the future.


    Extra information about desired system: Well, none really.
    The only ideas I have is of RAM, a minimum of 4GB (although the new intel CPU's have to be in 3's i've been told?) - I guess 3GB in DDR3 is about as good if not better than 4 in DDR2?
    The PC needs to have the ability to be upgraded later on if needed because it will be one that should last a good while. With a faster CPU, a bit more RAM, another HDD, better graphics card etc - But no need for any overclocking scope.
    Also, Intel CPU's are much prefered.

    She is looking to get it all and have it built for her BEFORE the 10th September, so there would be no waiting a month for the next big graphics card to come out etc :p

    If anyone is able to help, thanks in advance.

    Cheers! :)

    Pete
     
  2. Zinfandel

    Zinfandel Well-Known Member

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    The only kinda Intel upgrade path at the moment is socket 1366 and that's almost dead (And unless you want to spend £600 on a hex core then pointless anyway). The Sandy Bridge CPUs next year will be on different sockets so a CPU upgrade if you build a system now is a bit unrealistic because the 1366 socket is way overkill for what she needs so is a CPU upgrade something you were hoping for in the future?
     
  3. Zinfandel

    Zinfandel Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    £769.16 Leaving £230 ish for monitor and bits/bobs/Soundcard which I'm sure people will provide opinions on but if she's used to a laptop... Onboard sound isn't bad these days.

    That board is uATX though so if she wants anything on top of a GPU and soundcard you'd need to go ATX.
     
    Last edited: 13 Aug 2010
  4. rollo

    rollo Well-Known Member

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    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2010/08/09/pc-hardware-buyer-s-guide-august-2010/2

    build this

    change hard disk to the 1tb samsung mensioned above
    add a blueray disk drive in place of normal one

    total cost about £550

    its more than enough for what she wants

    moniter mouse keyboard can be had for around £ 150 ( cheap and chatty mouse and keyboard would suffice )

    Asus xonar dk soundcard is around £ 60 and is what id buy as the other options range from poor to shocking

    maybe £ 830 ( including OS ) tops ( complete system ) vs £770 (oem 64bit retails for around £74 at the minute ) so thats £844 for just the base( granted his is faster but the amd one you can upgrade to quad or hexcore for £150 quid )

    you dont get as much as you think when you factor in OS these days + moniter mouse keyboard

    id personally use onboard sound and knock £60 off

    £770 for a system she will use for 4 years and then you can pick up a cheap 2nd hand upgrade to revive it around that time.

    its the way id go
     
  5. pete*

    pete* Something witty here.

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    So nvidia is the best budget card at the moment then? :)

    I've always been partial to ATI cards, so don't understand the nvidia system at all. lol.

    I guess you can't get ATI 4870's anymore, my 512mb one is still going strong. What is the ATI equivalent of the 1GB 4870 now?
     
  6. reggie50

    reggie50 Member

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    I reckon you could comfortably drop the GTX460 of the affordable all-rounder to the ATi hd5770 and save £50. either card is good tho.
     
  7. pete*

    pete* Something witty here.

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    What would peoples opinion on this monitor be?

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/22-S...lack-Widescreen-Monitor-5-ms-1680x1050-700001

    Also, is this the right corsair PSU for the budget AMD PC rollo linked?

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/400W...ies-PSU-ATX-PS-2-80plus-Efficiency-UK-Version

    Oh, also - People are suggesting the Antec 300 - I have an antec 300 and had to buy fans for it, it only comes with, one is it? Or 2.. Does anyone have a recommendation of a cheap SILENT fan? This PC can't be a noisy one really.

    Also, I know you said to not be bothered too much with a soundcard, but just wondered if that mother board (the amd budget) can support a Xonar DX? It only has 1 PCI-E x16 slot, the other 2 are x1, the Xonar shows its interface as x16 PCI-E, i'm guessing that means it wouldn't work in the x1 ?
     
    Last edited: 13 Aug 2010
  8. lp1988

    lp1988 Well-Known Member

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    I you want the same performance the 5770 is the way to go. it is pretty much the same performance as the 4870 (1 GB), the difference being temperature and power usage.

    And for what she is going to use if for you may as well safe the money. (or give her your 4870 and by a 460 for yourself :D)
     

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