budget build

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budget build

Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 4:25 am

Hello-I'm building a budget system for my mom.This pc will be used for general use.I would like to build this for $500 dollars.She was going to buy a Dell,but I will not let that happen.Her old pc is a 200 MHz p4.Lol,now thats old.I would like to find a dependable board with sound and video intergrated on the motherboard.Unfortunately her monitor is 15 inches,so that has to go.She has Windows me.Do you think I should upgrade to xp?The only thing on her pc that is worth saving is the keyboard,speakers,and printer.So I will be starting from scratch.A 40 to 80 gig hard drive,cdr,and floppy will suit her needs.

Here is what I have for the build so far

1.Corsair Value select 2 x 512mb $90
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 5:19 am

Is that old system a P200 or a 2000 P4? I would get a 754 Radeon XPress Motherboard with a Sempron Processor, would run about $150. 80 gig hard drive plus cdr for about $80. Corsair Mem $85, winxp oem $95. That puts you at $410. $90 to find a decent optical mouse and case with a 24pin powersupply. If you need to buy a monitor with that $500 also, I would suggest checking out the bargain basement here and hardforums.com to find used parts to make a used athlon xp system.

If you go new, I highly suggest newegg.com
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 5:20 am

Well I'm not in the states but using Zip Zoom Fly (Newegg is down), the best I coul manage was $553 with WinXP, and thats 512MB of RAM with bottom of the range components (MK8M800 chipset, 2600 Sempron, crap, dogdy case). You do get a 15" LCD and 80GB hdd for that though, there little money to be saved by going with a 40GB IDE drive (~$5) and you dont really want a CRT.

Count on another $120 to get a decent case, the RAM you want, an upgradable motherboard with semi decent IGP and abetter chipset and CPU that isnt so crippled and with 64 bit for the future.

Maybe ZipZoomFly is more expensive, I'm not certain on prices over there. Newegg was looking similar.

Edit: What I'd suggest for around that budget

Sempron 2800 64-bit $76
MSI ATI RS480 mATX motherboard $77
Sony 52x32x52 CD-RW drive $20.99
Hitachi 80GB SATAII hard drive $52
Antec case with 350W PSU and 120mm fan $65 or
Rosewill case with 350W $19.99
PQI 2x256MB RAM 46.03
WinXP Home $91.95

That comes to $383.96 with the cheap case, leaving only $120 for a moniter. A 17" CRT can easily be had for that so if that enough, but a 15" LCD will run you about $170. I'd suggest if you go this way to stick with the 15" CRT for a bit longer until you can get a decent LCD, or spend more upfront. Im not sure about the case/memory either.

Other than that, going with a Dell will probably be cheaper, beacuse they basically throw in a free moniter and XP license. Never as much fun though :P
Last edited by amphibem on Thu Aug 18, 2005 5:54 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 5:36 am

There's nothing wrong with Dell, if it's for email/word/internet :P If it breaks it's their problem...
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 6:35 am

Coran Fixx wrote:Is that old system a P200 or a 2000 P4?


Intel Pentium mmx 200MHz 64 mb of ram.

*edit* Case should be reusable.
She has a full size tower case.I believe the case brand is called,"legend."Hmm,thats appropriate.It matches the parts inside.I never built a pc before,so this will be my first build.I would like to use her exsisting case.It looks like you can add 2 fans to the back of the case.A 92mm and a 120mm.The 92mm fan is the the only fan that is hooked up for exhaust.The grill is also restricted on the 92 mm fan,so exhaust air is even more limited.No big deal.I can unrestrict it real quick.Thats not alot of cooling for the original set-up.The only other fan is a 80mm over the chip.The case itself is solid.No air leaks,that I can tell.I was thinking of cutting out the restrictions for the 120 on the back,and use that for the main exhaust.Would that be enough to keep the pc cool other than a new heatsink fan for the chip?

Other than that, going with a Dell will probably be cheaper, beacuse they basically throw in a free moniter and XP license. Never as much fun though


Your correct.I am itching to build a pc.I heard a rumor that Dell uses refubished parts on there low end systems.I'm not saying this is true,but how in the world can you sell a pc for 300 dollars.On a side note,does any one know if the xp edition purchased from Dell is a stand alone cd.I was wondering if it is a all in one recovery disk with windows,drivers,and all there bloated software.

Thanks for the references on parts.I will start to crunch some numbers.She can go over $500,but I would like to stick around that figure.

I am building a new amd system after this build,so I will be back for advice.I'm planning a budget of 2m for that build.I bought a hp about 4 years ago.I replaced the hard drive and cdr of few times because of heavy use.Well,now it's time to build new instead of buy new.I can hardly wait to put in the parts I want instead of all those generic parts that come with store bought pc's.
Last edited by rollingbones on Thu Aug 18, 2005 7:43 am, edited 7 times in total.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 7:10 am

rollingbones wrote:I heard a rumor that Dell uses refubished parts on there low end systems.I'm not saying this is true,but how in the world can you sell a pc for 300 dollars.


While im no fan of Dell..i really dont think they use refurb parts in their machines. They make money buy selling a lot of computers...as in thousands of them. I suspect their lower end models are loss leaders just to get people to buy and that they make the bulk of their money on higher end boxes.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 7:59 am

If it is for general use, those Dell Celeron-D's look pretty good. :)

Is the old 15" CRT still working fine? May be you can hold on to it a bit longer to cut cost as well?

You can also try building a Celeron-D setup. Those are really cheap. I spec'ed one for my mom a year ago and at that time it was cheaper than AMD's equivalent. Of course now is a different story.

Regarding your case, I would double check if that P200 case is an ATX case. Those were the times when the Great Crossover (TM) from AT to ATX happened. Almost all boards these days are ATX/mATX so it may not work with that case. Not to mention the PSU inside cannot be reused also.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 8:03 am

Here's a really good buy on an Antec BQE case. For what your planning on building the included PSU should suffice.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp ... 7627381742
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 8:10 am

Flying Fox wrote:If it is for general use, those Dell Celeron-D's look pretty good. :)

Is the old 15" CRT still working fine? May be you can hold on to it a bit longer to cut cost as well?

You can also try building a Celeron-D setup. Those are really cheap. I spec'ed one for my mom a year ago and at that time it was cheaper than AMD's equivalent. Of course now is a different story.

Regarding your case, I would double check if that P200 case is an ATX case. Those were the times when the Great Crossover (TM) from AT to ATX happened. Almost all boards these days are ATX/mATX so it may not work with that case. Not to mention the PSU inside cannot be reused also.


Good point.This may sound stupid,but How do I check the case?Is there something inside the case itself that will give me that information.I will also check into the Celeron -D set-up.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 8:14 am

Id go with the new Sempr0n's from AMD before getting a celery...just as cheap and upgradeable with a decent board.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 8:46 am

For the low-end, it is hard to beat Dell's performance.
For $550, my syster got a p4 2.8 w/ 512mb RAM 60GB HDD, cd-rw/dvd-rom, pci-express upgradeability
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 8:57 am

Well, you could head down to the local Wallyworld and pick up one of the cheap boxes there - they have a Compaq with a socket 754 Sempron 3000+, 256 RAM, 80 gig HD, DVD-ROM/CDRW, and 17" CRT for $450 or so. Throw in a bit more RAM, and you would have a decent machine for not too much money.

Or if you want to build it yourself

$77 MSI RS480M-IL motherboard, with integrated xpress200 graphics
$65 Sempron 64 2600+
$55 for 80 GB hard drive
$24 Rosewill Combo drive
$49 for Corsair Value Select PC3200 512MB RAM
$50 for Powersupply + case
$90 Windows XP Home OEM

Total cost: $410.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:21 am

I guess I will put in my two cents.

I say go with Dell or whoever - unless you truly feel like fixing it everytime something happens. If that's the case then:

Antec Minuet II $64
Mobo $49
Sempron64 2600 $65
512meg $47
80 gig drive $51.50
DVD-Rom $20
XP-Home $86.95

for a grand total of $383.45

The rest is up to you. The leftover can be put towards a 17" LCD. You just saved her money and space. You're such a good son.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 6:26 pm

I wouldn't reuse the case even if by some miracle it was compatible.
That link for the best buy antec case is a good one if there is one in stock in your area.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:04 pm

Thanks for all the building ideas.I hate to admit it,but the Dell deal is hard to beat for the money.Earier this evening,my mom tells me that the company she works for buys alot of Dell's. Then she says she could get even a better deal on a Dell going through her company.I wish she would have told me that 2 days ago,but maybe with increased savings she could upgrade from the 2400.

I checked out that Antec case.I would definitely by a new case if I build.I will do some serious thinking about which direction to take.

Hey! I need another budget build for $250.00

Naw,just joshin ya,but I wouldn't be surprised if someone had figures for that extreme budget build.
Last edited by rollingbones on Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:30 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Postposted on Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:09 pm

rollingbones wrote:Hey! I need another budget build for $250.00


Your best bet for a $250 build is to have a look at ebay for a 2nd hand AXP system.
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Postposted on Fri Aug 19, 2005 5:47 pm

The best $250 build is to buy a $25.00 computer and wait until you have more money.
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