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Old 06-02-2009, 01:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default dirt cheap build

I want to build a computer for my parents who won't use it too much. I have around $150 to blow on something cheap but reliable. I need a cpu, mobo, psu, memory, hdd and an optical drive. A gfx card would be nice if possible. My parents check e-mails, listen to music and watch movie/video clips so a build that could easily do those things would be appreciated. I built something quick on newegg, but I want some other suggestions and opinions. Thanks
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:49 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

I'd consider a netbook. Tigerdirect regularily puts the Acer Aspire One on sale for $199.

Other than that, my only advice is to avoid case/psu combos as they will save you money now and really kick your *** in 6 months. If you have an old computer lying around, I'd try and reuse the case. Reuse the hard drive, too, if you can, then all you are looking to buy is mb/cpu/ram/psu to have a full system.
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

Now people are going to cry at me about this build, but I'll explain.

Newegg.com - AMD Athlon 64 X2 7750 Kuma 2.7GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache 2MB L3 Cache Socket AM2+ 95W Dual-Core black edition Processor - Processors - Desktops
Newegg.com - Foxconn A76ML-K AM2+ / AM3 Ready AMD 760G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards
Newegg.com - OCZ Value Series 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 667 (PC2 5400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory
Newegg.com - HITACHI Deskstar 7K160 HDS721680PLA380 (0A32727) 80GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - Internal Hard Drives
Newegg.com - APEVIA ATX-CW420W 420W ATX12V Power Supply - Power Supplies
Newegg.com - RAIDMAX APEX ATX-802B Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases
Newegg.com - HP Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache IDE 22X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe - CD / DVD Burners

Total comes to $260.19 with shipping, then you get 15 bucks back in MIRs.

Yes, I know, it's a Raidmax PSU. But I have had a LOT of dealings with budget PSUs, and they work plenty fine for general users. I have used this exact model plenty of times when building on a budget. Heck, I'm using a Logisys 480w in my current desktop right now, and that is a much worse brand than Raidmax. (Though I do want to upgrade soon...)

The case has free shipping, which is useful, plus a $10 MIR. I don't really like Hitachi drives, but they work fine on a budget.

Bottom line, this is about the cheapest you'll get for a full machine, case and all. If you have any parts to throw in, you're just saving that much money. There's really not a lot of wiggle room here unless you dumb down to 1gb of RAM (don't recommend it), save 5 bucks and get a slower processor (not worth it), or save a dollar or so and get a non lightscribe drive (really?).

EDIT: I meant Aspire/Apevia for the PSU. But still, we've used both about the same.
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:31 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

Quote:
Originally Posted by hikaricloud View Post
Now people are going to cry at me about this build, but I'll explain.

Newegg.com - AMD Athlon 64 X2 7750 Kuma 2.7GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache 2MB L3 Cache Socket AM2+ 95W Dual-Core black edition Processor - Processors - Desktops
Newegg.com - Foxconn A76ML-K AM2+ / AM3 Ready AMD 760G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards
Newegg.com - OCZ Value Series 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 667 (PC2 5400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory
Newegg.com - HITACHI Deskstar 7K160 HDS721680PLA380 (0A32727) 80GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - Internal Hard Drives
Newegg.com - APEVIA ATX-CW420W 420W ATX12V Power Supply - Power Supplies
Newegg.com - RAIDMAX APEX ATX-802B Black SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases
Newegg.com - HP Black 22X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 22X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache IDE 22X DVD±R DVD Burner with LightScribe - CD / DVD Burners

Total comes to $260.19 with shipping, then you get 15 bucks back in MIRs.

Yes, I know, it's a Raidmax PSU. But I have had a LOT of dealings with budget PSUs, and they work plenty fine for general users. I have used this exact model plenty of times when building on a budget. Heck, I'm using a Logisys 480w in my current desktop right now, and that is a much worse brand than Raidmax. (Though I do want to upgrade soon...)

The case has free shipping, which is useful, plus a $10 MIR. I don't really like Hitachi drives, but they work fine on a budget.

Bottom line, this is about the cheapest you'll get for a full machine, case and all. If you have any parts to throw in, you're just saving that much money. There's really not a lot of wiggle room here unless you dumb down to 1gb of RAM (don't recommend it), save 5 bucks and get a slower processor (not worth it), or save a dollar or so and get a non lightscribe drive (really?).
Absolutely do not get that PSU. It is garbage.

This is the very least I would go on a PSU: Newegg.com - Antec earthwatts EA380 380W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.0 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Power Supplies
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

this mobo is 10 bucks cheaper, though the one hikari suggests has a slightly better chipset:
Newegg.com - Foxconn A74MX-K AM2&#43;&#47;AM2 AMD 740G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards
this processor is 25 dollars cheaper:
Newegg.com - AMD Athlon X2 4050e Brisbane 2.1GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 45W Dual-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops
only 35 bucks w/ free shipping. it would be fine for the rig you are building, and it uses less energy (in other words it will run cooler). but it is OEM which means it doesnt have a cpu cooler. this cooler is 12 bucks:
Newegg.com - Rosewill RCX-Z1 Long life ball bearing for over 45,000&#47;hrs CPU Cooler - CPU Fans & Heatsinks
works fine and it is relatively quiet (i have one on my HTPC)
so in the end it is only like ~20 bucks difference, but if you are on that tight of a budget, 20 bucks is 20 bucks.
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:05 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrazeD View Post
Absolutely do not get that PSU. It is garbage.

This is the very least I would go on a PSU: Newegg.com - Antec earthwatts EA380 380W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.0 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Power Supplies
Like I was saying, I've put dozens of those 380/420w Raidmax/Apevia PSUs in machines. Failure % is very low in general use machines.

I wouldn't recommend anything that I didn't think would work for a build.

And seeing as my build is 110 bucks over his budget already, he's not going to put an extra 25 bucks into the PSU.
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:09 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

Quote:
Originally Posted by hikaricloud View Post
Like I was saying, I've put dozens of those 380/420w Raidmax PSUs in machines. Failure % is very low in general use machines.

I wouldn't recommend anything that I didn't think would work for a build.

And seeing as my build is 110 bucks over his budget already, he's not going to put an extra 25 bucks into the PSU.
I agree Raidmax does make pretty good PSU's. I had one in my old computer and it worked fine for a good 4 years until I broke it. (My first time installing a PCI card... It ended up falling out of the MoBo when the thing was on and blowing the PSU)
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:16 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

You couldn't pay me to use that psu in a build. In my opinion you would be better of going with a cheaper cpu like a Celeron Dual Core and better quality components.

These parts are $236

Newegg.com - SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD&#43;R 8X DVD&#43;RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD Burner - CD / DVD Burners

Newegg.com - Rosewill R218-P-BK Black 0.5mm SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases

Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar SE WD800AAJS 80GB 7200 RPM 8MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb&#47;s 3.5&#34; Internal Hard Drive - Internal Hard Drives

Newegg.com - SILVERSTONE ST350 350W ATX12V 2.2 Power Supply - Power Supplies

Newegg.com - WINTEC AMPO 2GB &#40;2 x 1GB&#41; 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 &#40;PC2 6400&#41; Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory - Desktop Memory

Newegg.com - Foxconn G31MV-K LGA 775 Intel G31 Micro ATX Intel Motherboard - Intel Motherboards

Newegg.com - Intel Celeron E1400 Allendale 2.0GHz 512KB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:22 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

for $250 with the upgrade potential with the am2+ motherboard I would love to see a celeron build with as much potential as Hikaricloud's build.

sure the PSU is not that great but it can be upgraded later and will be more than sufficient for the current build.
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:22 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: dirt cheap build

Okay...so I can throw in an E1400 Celeron and a cheap G31 board and we save a whopping 25 bucks.

What else do you want me to cut to try to fit into a $150 budget? I'm throwing the best pieces I can on an extremely low budget, and still way over.

Since recommending parts should generally be based on the experience you've had with said parts, I will state again: I've used plenty of those PSUs in general use machines. They work fine. I would say 1 in 50 at the VERY worst have failed. For 15 bucks, that's pretty good.

EDIT: By the way, PJ. That build total doesn't include the shipping. It's a total of $259.96 after shipping...which means you save 23 cents by going with a lesser processor, a lesser mobo, lesser case, crappy RAM brand. all just to get a more expensive PSU.

My mobo can be upgraded with an AM3 processor. I would spend the extra 23 cents.
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