Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father - Techist - Tech Forum

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Old 01-29-2010, 07:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

I haven't built a PC in nearly two years now, so I'm out of the loop with what is the best bang-for-buck hardware. I did a little research before posting, and I wanted to get some opinions on this build.

My dad had a Dell machine that is at least 10 years old that finally died on him. Essentially all he uses the PC for is e-mail, web browsing, documentation, and some very light games (like some poker game he bought, animations that an on-board video card should be able to handle, but I'll get a decent low-end card for him anyhow).

He already has two monitors (I upgraded the video card a few years ago for dual monitors), speakers, and a keyboard & mouse. All we need is the actual PC. He doesn't want to spend more than $800 which is more than enough headroom for a simple PC (I think). Lastly (although he won't utilize it), I will install my Windows 7 64-bit OS on this machine.

This is what I've come up with, please give me you opinions:

Motherboard:
$89.99 - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3L
Newegg.com - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3L LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard - Intel Motherboards

Processor (stock heatsink should be fine, no OC):
$167.99 - Intel Core 2 Duo E8400
Newegg.com - Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz 6MB L2 Cache LGA 775 65W Dual-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops

RAM:
$85.99 - G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB)
Newegg.com - G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-6400CL5D-4GBPQ - Desktop Memory

Video Card:
$69.99 - EVGA GeForce 9500 GT 1GB
Newegg.com - EVGA 01G-P3-N959-TR GeForce 9500 GT 1GB 128-bit GDDR2 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards

Hard Drive:
$69.99 - Western Digital Caviar 640GB
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Blue WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Power Supply:
$79.99 - CORSAIR 550W
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W ATX12V V2.2 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Power Supplies

Case:
$69.99 - COOLER MASTER 690
Newegg.com - COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases

Total:
$633.93 + tax & shipping
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HDDs: 2x 750GB & 250GB
Optical: Sony NEC SATA DVD Burner
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Old 01-29-2010, 07:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

Seems good to me, that's **** of amount of space there though for just a basic PC. You could save a few bucks and buy a smaller HDD since your dad really won't be using it for heavy gaming or editing...and documents/light gaming won't even fill 200GB or so lol. That's just my opinion though .
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Old 01-29-2010, 08:16 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

Newegg.com - AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops
Newegg.com - GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards
Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Desktop Memory
Newegg.com - SAPPHIRE 100287VGAL Radeon HD 5670 (Redwood) 512MB 128-bit DDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-400CX 400W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Retail
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Blue WD6400AAKS 640GB 7200 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Newegg.com - COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases

without changing the case and hdd you picked, these total $546 w/ $3 shipping on the mobo.

no reason to start a new build from scratch with an old socket (lga775). if you dont mind going with amd/ati, you will get great bang/buck parts. you get a quad-core for $95, 4gigs of ddr3 for almost the same price as the ddr2 ram you listed, a newer 5xxx series gpu with dx11 support (even though it might be overkill for you said the comp would be used for). and the corsair 400w will be plenty to power this rig.

if youd like to stick with intel for around the same price, you could look into a dual-core i3 setup.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboD...t=Combo.323340
you could get that and leave everything else that ive listed the same too.


also, do you need an optical drive or will you be reusing one?

if you need one, this will do.
Newegg.com - Sony Optiarc Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD/CD Rewritable Drive - CD / DVD Burners
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:18 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

i like harddrives with more cache plus free shipping
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

power supply with free shipping

Newegg.com - Antec NEO ECO 520C 520W Continuous Power ATX12V v2.3 / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply - Power Supplies

Windows7 free shipping

Newegg.com - Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - Operating Systems
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

why would he get a 32-bit OS when he's planning on getting 4gigs of ram? it costs the same as 64-bit anyway, so theres not reason to.
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Old 01-29-2010, 11:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

Muffn's build is the better way to go if you want a quad. $168 for a CPU to go in a rig like this is way too much. If you want a dual core, grab this one:
Newegg.com - AMD Athlon II X2 250 Regor 3.0GHz 2 x 1MB L2 Cache Socket AM3 65W Dual-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops
$65 w/free shipping

No need for high-powered graphics, so no real need for DX11 either. But still better than the 9500.
Newegg.com - XFX HD-467X-ZDF2 Radeon HD 4670 1GB 128-bit DDR2 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards
$70 w/$2 shipping

I would go with the 500GB WD Black, as well. Grab the 64-bit Win7. The 400W Corsair will be plenty of juice and at a nice price point, too.
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Old 01-30-2010, 06:34 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Mid-tier/mainstream PC for my father

Thank you so much Muffin Man, baih77, and Trotter!

What I've decided to do is take Muffin Man's build (good point on building a DDR3/i7 system, no point in getting an outdated DDR2/775 system... especially when the cost is so similar), but get the 32MB cache HDD that baih77 suggested and the XFX 4670 video card that Trotter suggested. Otherwise, the build is essential the AMD build Muffin Man put together.

Newegg.com - COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKN1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Computer Cases
Newegg.com - GIGABYTE GA-MA770T-UD3P AM3 AMD 770 ATX AMD Motherboard - AMD Motherboards
Newegg.com - XFX HD-467X-ZDF2 Radeon HD 4670 1GB 128-bit DDR2 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card - Desktop Graphics / Video Cards
Newegg.com - CORSAIR CMPSU-400CX 400W ATX12V V2.2 80 PLUS Certified Compatible with Core i7 Power Supply - Power Supplies
Newegg.com - AMD Athlon II X4 620 Propus 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM3 95W Quad-Core Processor - Processors - Desktops
Newegg.com - G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-4GBRL - Desktop Memory
Newegg.com - Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
Newegg.com - Sony Optiarc Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM 2MB Cache SATA DVD/CD Rewritable Drive - CD / DVD Burners

Also, I did forget to get an optical drive, thanks for the reminder and suggestion Muffin Man!

I really appreciate the help guys.
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