NEW to SFF malarkey

For small-form factor PCs and the (extremely small) people who love them.

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NEW to SFF malarkey

Postposted on Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:00 am

Hi all,

never been near a SFF pc, but am very interested. My brother is turning 30 in August and I thought I'd like to buy/build him a SFF to replace his prehistoric stereo. it'd be an amazing surprise, and he'd be over the moon and it'd be a fun project.

Basically I need it to run iTunes, wireless g, with, say, a 120gb drive or so.

I've looked at the Shuttle wsite, and they are a little too expensive. I've been scoring newegg and I think I can come up with quite a reasonable machine for c. $500 (with 14"/15" LCD included). I'm sure I'd get away with integrated graphics and maybe 256 memory - he's not going to be playing games on it or anything...

Is it a good idea to build my own SFF from parts off newegg? (I've built regular PC's before). Could anyone suggest a good shopping list for the machine I've outlined? Bearing in mind I'm trying to hit a $500-$600 ceiling.

Any help would be mucho appreciated!!

Thanks!
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Postposted on Wed Jun 01, 2005 9:54 am

building an SFF is just like building a regular PC. Only differences are space is tighter and you don't have as much room to expand. (most cases this is none at all)

Otherwise they are great. I've done 4 of them. Love them, never going back. As for storage, that is in the compaq server humming away in my basement. :D
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Postposted on Wed Jun 01, 2005 10:00 am

There quite a few micro-ATX s754 boards from newegg with integrated everything. That's the route I would go.

Figure about 175-200$ for a decent 15in LCD.

And just scanning newegg for the rest:
The cheapest µATX s754 motherboard with integrated graphics and sound I see from a respectable manufacture is about $60... that's the first MSI board that shows up, meh.
I see a refurb AMD Athlon 64 2800+ for $103
There are a couple reasonably small Case and PSU combos for about $70
256 megs of ram in a box of Trix... heh. sorry. for about $30
Figure $80 for the HDD
Add a DVD player and you're at around $570.
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Postposted on Wed Jun 01, 2005 10:17 am

cheers guys - I'll have a scour!
Yes but wait until you see the full effect with the heump
I'm an NLE editor not a tech genius!!!
slixxx
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Postposted on Wed Jun 01, 2005 10:23 am

OK excellent.

One question:

If I'm essentially building a stereo / music system etc - what's the best way to hook up speakers? Do I buy a good PC set, or can you hook the system to regular stereo speakers??

Thanks!
Yes but wait until you see the full effect with the heump
I'm an NLE editor not a tech genius!!!
slixxx
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Postposted on Wed Jun 01, 2005 2:49 pm

If your intention is to drive full size speakers, connect the sound out to an auxiliary port on your stereo system.

I've done it before you just need the right cable. You will have to check the PCs sound out and input on your receiver.

for Surround I am not sure, but the above will get the sound to speakers.
"I used to think the brain was the most amazing organ in the entire body. Then I realized who was telling me this."
If ignorance were painful, half the posters here would be on morphine drips.
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Postposted on Thu Jun 02, 2005 10:14 am

Hi all,

Have to shop from Tigerdirect as newegg do not do international delivery / orders etc.

Waht about this system?

MSI K7N2GM-V 59.99
AMD Sempron 2400+ 68.99
Corsair Value Select 512MB PC3200 DDR 400MHz CL2.5 44.99
Maxtor / 80GB / 7200 / 8MB / SATA-150 69.99
Aopen / 52x32x52x CD-RW / 16x DVD-ROM / Internal Beige Combo Drive 34.99
Amptron CT-520D / 15-Inch / 1024 x 768 / 16ms / Pearl White / LCD Monitor 169.99
Powmax Black Micro ATX Case with Front USB and 230W Power Supply 34.99
Blitzz / BWI715 / 108Mbps / 802.11g / PCI / Wireless Adapter 44.99
TOTAL: 528.92
Yes but wait until you see the full effect with the heump
I'm an NLE editor not a tech genius!!!
slixxx
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Postposted on Thu Jun 02, 2005 10:26 am

For what you are planning to do, that machine looks fine. The socket A chips like that Sempron are getting a little long in the tooth, but for what you plan to do, it will be more than enough.
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Postposted on Thu Jun 02, 2005 11:57 am

Slixx - if this is in CDN$, then I don't think you want to order from the U.S. cause you will still have to take into consideration the monitary conversion and take care of customs - if the company has its own broker, you will have to pay the brokerage firm.

If you are in Canada - try Price Network to get good prices for the parts you are looking for (kinda like price grabber). You can also order from different provinces to avoid the P.S.T.
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