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Thread: First computer build

  1. #1

    Default First computer build

    This summer I will be getting €350. So I'm going to spend it on starting to build my own computer.

    Up until this point, my hardware experience has been swapping in and out graphics cards/HDDs/RAM/Network Cards etc. Things I don't know that much about include PSUs/mobos.

    The €350 is only to get started as I plan to add more to it as and when I get more cash. However, after the €350, it has to be usable. It doesn't have to play Crysis on Very High or anything, but for web browsing and older games, it should run fine.

    Things I don't need to buy
    - OS. I'll be dual booting Kubuntu and XP (XP initially at least as my only Vista discs are Dell OEMs)
    - Monitor. My 19" HD Ready TV (1440 x 900) can double as the monitor. I already use it as a second screen for my laptop when I'm home.

    Extensibility is more important than the highest specs. I don't want to have to replace the PSU if I buy a ATI Radeon 4870 (or whatever the current highest model is) 6 months down the line unless totally neccesary.

    So basicallly what I'm asking for is advice on components, especially mobos/PSUs/CPUs.

  2. #2


    Grab a mobo with an onboard gfx and sound card. That will save you some cash and you can always install standalone cards later.

  3. #3


    Some onboard graphics have gotten pretty decent (didn't test it myself, though), so you might read up on motherboards who have them. I like AMD better than Intel/Nvidia, so I'd get something that supports Phenom2 processors and DDR2, with Intel you'd probably have to buy some socket that is already old if you don't want to spend your whole money on a CPU + MoBo + RAM.

    You might look into 3-core-Phenom2s as most games are still struggling to support 2-4 cores, so a high per-core performance is more important than having lots of cores. (Dunno if they offer 3-core Phenom 2s like that, though) I don't think there are other things you really NEED performance for but games, as you can always wait just a little longer if you do a bit of video editing or whatever.

  4. #4


    I would recommend this to you, you can choose to go by the cheapest parts or just select them by yourself - LambdaTek Computing

  5. #5


    For a PSU I would recommend a 550 watt ATX12V type power supply. For motherboards anything around $85 on up to $150 USD should do you just fine. Asus, Gigabyte, and MSI are good performing brands, Acer, Foxconn, and Biostar are good seconds. Foxconn and Biostar have been around for quite a while even though they usually arent the 'bleeding' edge, still cutting edge. If you want an AMD processor which I also recommend a motherboard that will do a socket AM2+/AM3 and that will handle 2 year old processors like my Athlon X2 on to the current Phenom2 chips. Its good practice to go for things that have been out for about a year so any bugs will have surfaced already. Pick your CPU, then your motherboard, then your ram. In the old days some ram wasn't always to industry spec and even today its a good idea to go to the RAM mfg's website and the mobo's mfg website and double check compatibility. CPU prices drop quickly within 6 months so they are easy to upgrade later. - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, Digital Cameras and more! is where I do my shopping. Also its the motherboard that decides how long a system can extend its lifespan, the more open it is to ram, connections, and new CPU's the longer the lifespan shall be. Most of my systems go for about 5 years before being replaced. Two computers per decade isn't bad.

    Edit: One more thought, the operating systems today are ALWAYS slower than your hardware, TECHNICALLY my current computer should be 4 times faster than a Pentium 4, 2 cores at 64 bit versus 1 core at 32 bit. To date I have yet to see any software that requires 64 bit processors and I have yet to see operating systems that fully and properly utilize hardware (lazy my age programmers). Used to be programs were written on paper and sent to a master terminal for compiling, 10 minutes would cost a company a cool million bucks, if a compile went out of control good luck; this is back when a corporation could only afford ONE computer that was less powerful than a PSP.

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