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Old 04-09-2007, 12:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default very cheap PC, have case, help!

Hello all,

I am currently converting my old desktop PC (ABS AMD Athlon 3000+, 1GB RAM, FX 5200 card) into an HTPC. Basically, removing everything from the old and placing it into a new box.

This process leaves me with a perfectly good ATX case to use (like this Welcome to Apevia.com   APEVIA X-Pider Aluminum Case w/ Side Window-Black).
I also have a plain DVD player, case fans, and 2-20 GB hard drives. I would like to build a PC for my very young daughters to surf nickjr, disney.com, etc as well as play games (very low graphic content stuff). I plan to "lock it down" so they can only do those limited things I allow. Basically so they stay off my computers. I would also like it to be capable for me to use for internet stuff, simple software, pay bills, etc. in the event my laptop or HTPC goes down.

I was thinking that a very low end video card or even onboard video would be fine. Onboard sound is fine. I guess I would need a power supply, a motherboard, a processor, RAM, an OS (could I do linux for this? XP home would be fine too), and then a video card if cannot be had onboard. I want to do this extremely cheap and am looking for guidance what to get and where. Is there a place that sells chips and MB's that were up to date from say 3-4 years ago (ie: AMD 2600+ or celeron's?). That would be fine for my purpose.

I am new to this and appreciate any comments. I do know a bit about PC's, but have never built one from scratch. This PC is to replace an old corporate reject we got for free from work. It is intollerably slow even for my 4 and 6 year olds.

Thanks much,

Pat
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Old 04-09-2007, 02:47 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

motherboard doesnt matter as your not going to overclock anything buy a big brand. fortron psu. E6400 or E6420 if you wait processor wise but that would make it quite powerful so maybe a E4300 or the AMD route as they are dirt cheap now and may be better for your situation.

I would recommend for an OS ubuntu with beryl it is very easy to use and looks better then vista with very low graphical resources needed and every program and game is in the search (literally thousands of programs in one database for any possible need you have for free) which is locked by the admin password for protection. For usability windows xp may be better as then any game can be played with ease no incompatibility issues which may arise.

Ram any really as you wont be overclocking just a name brand should do fine

graphics card depends on the motherboard you choose but a 7600Gt should be more then enough for your daughters until they start playing games heavily if at all.

best advice is put together a list of parts and then we here on the forum will check them over get you the best performance/price possible or give us a budget and trust us to choose good parts.

Matt
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Old 04-09-2007, 02:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

Cheap CPU :
Newegg.com - AMD Sempron 64 3000+ Manila 1.6GHz 256KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 Processor - Retail
Decent motherboard with good intergrated video.
Newegg.com - ASUS M2A-VM Socket AM2 AMD 690G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
The chipset is based on the Radeon x1250 videocard. So its pretty good.
Your case should have a power supply but here :
cheap 300w power supply
Newegg.com - Buy Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, Digital Cameras and more!
Ram : value ram
Newegg.com - Kingston ValueRAM 512MB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 533 (PC2 4200) System Memory - Retail

should equal only around $140.00
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Old 04-09-2007, 02:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by saltynay View Post
motherboard doesnt matter as your not going to overclock anything buy a big brand. fortron psu. E6400 or E6420 if you wait processor wise but that would make it quite powerful so maybe a E4300 or the AMD route as they are dirt cheap now and may be better for your situation.

I would recommend for an OS ubuntu with beryl it is very easy to use and looks better then vista with very low graphical resources needed and every program and game is in the search (literally thousands of programs in one database for any possible need you have for free) which is locked by the admin password for protection. For usability windows xp may be better as then any game can be played with ease no incompatibility issues which may arise.

Ram any really as you wont be overclocking just a name brand should do fine

graphics card depends on the motherboard you choose but a 7600Gt should be more then enough for your daughters until they start playing games heavily if at all.

best advice is put together a list of parts and then we here on the forum will check them over get you the best performance/price possible or give us a budget and trust us to choose good parts.

Matt

What the f***? You know nothing... That's not cheap. I know what people mean when they say cheap...


If your daughter's only playing 2d animated games, get a Compaq Deskpro. Heck, some schools are GIVING them away. You can get them on eBay for about 35 bucks a pop. They've usually got a 800Mhz P3, 256MB RAM, 10GB Hard Drive and a Rivia TNT2.
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Old 04-09-2007, 03:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

i agree with WorldIndustries, but in a much less offensive way C2D and 7600Gt are you serious?

£30 will buy a moderate motherboard with sound, video and LAN everything you need really
Aonther £30 will get a CPU with more than enough power for your needs
If you use AMD 939 or older or Intel 478 or older then you can use any (182) DDR you find. AM2 or 775 and you have to get DDR2
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Old 04-09-2007, 03:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

Quote:
Originally Posted by WorldIndustries View Post
What the f***? You know nothing... That's not cheap. I know what people mean when they say cheap...


If your daughter's only playing 2d animated games, get a Compaq Deskpro. Heck, some schools are GIVING them away. You can get them on eBay for about 35 bucks a pop. They've usually got a 800Mhz P3, 256MB RAM, 10GB Hard Drive and a Rivia TNT2.
This is similar to what I have now. I think it's a 550 P3 w 20GB HD. It has Windows 2000. It's painfully slow even for them. I think I may go with the AMD suggestion above. That sounds good and is in the price range I was thinking.

For the others who have responded, I'd like to stay under $150 if possible. Would the ECS, PC chips, or biostar boards work OK or am I asking for trouble with off brands. I have a Gigabyte board on my soon to be HTPC and like it. I have heard good things about Asus as well.

Also, would it be better to get 2 sticks of 256 or 1 stick of 512 for the RAM? Is dual channel even useful with simple computing like I described?

I really appreciate the replies, keep them coming.

Thanks,

Pat
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Old 04-09-2007, 04:13 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

As crazy as it may sound...the cheapest cores are actually the newest motherboard Socket becuase they dont make the oldr motherboards anymore. I HIGHLY suggest getting something like this instead for only 20 bucks more.

Newegg.com - Rosewill RV300 ATX 300W Power Supply 115/230 V CE, cUL, CSA, CB, TUV, FCC, NEMKO, DEMKO, SEMKO, TC - Retail
Newegg.com - BIOSTAR K8M800 Micro AM2 Socket AM2 VIA K8M800 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
Newegg.com - AMD Athlon 64 X2 3600+ Brisbane 1.9GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 Processor - Retail
Newegg.com - WINTEC AMPO 512MB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 533 (PC2 4200) Desktop Memory - Retail


Now I know it is way overkill but understand how much more power is in that cpu than an old sempron. Just think more in terms of how eventually the sempron would even get slow for tasks like that in a year or two while this for only 40 more or so will last years for basic tasks.

$161.97

Like I said it would be overkill but understand for not much more you are getting something FAR FAR more future proof...This is just what I would do. The CPU is lterally probably 4 times more powerful for 20 bucks more...
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Old 04-09-2007, 05:25 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

I am 17 and a rich kid the value of money is not evident to me lol sorry for the bad suggestions my pc cost £1,450 and would still call that only average nothing special.
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Old 04-09-2007, 05:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

Im 17 and a kid who is not rich...lol I'm just very good by now at finding the best parts for your money
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Old 04-09-2007, 05:54 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: very cheap PC, have case, help!

my new build is itx so thats my expertise now and also crazy ideas and making them work I would struggle to offer a build which costs less then £500
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