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I was wondering what all of you're opinions were on what the best low-budget computer would be. I would prefer to do it myself (its cheaper that way isn't it?), but I want it to be not low-low end parts. I do not prefer AMD to Intel (or visa-versa), and am just looking for the bare essentials (RAM, PSU, CPU, Motherboard and Case should do it). I was looking at doing one of the AMD quad-cores for my CPU and one of the lower end motherboards (I don't need that many features for my mobo), and it priced out to about $400-$500. My price range is very, very low (I am a high school student with no job, so yeah...) so I would prefer anything under $600 would be acceptable. I know this isn't much room to work with, but I want to see if you guys can get a better system for lower than I could, or even a comparable system for lower.

Thanks in advance,


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Oh, and what would you guys recommend for a PSU in a computer, because I seriously have no idea what I would need. Should I look at all of the parts and figure out what they need power wise and then add it up, or is there a certain wattage where I would pretty much be safe?

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hmm.. This is an interesting thread.. Let me ask you first. What do you want/think you want to do with it...

If it's just simple browsing/video/maybe a little hacking or something, go get THIS:


4 Gig's of ram, a dual core processor, even a flippin' sweetass looking case and a 19" widescreen.

I'm proud.. *tear* Actually you could go alot cheaper on that memory though... Also you take of things and it get's WAY cheaper... Got a monitor already? -$74, got a keyboard and mouse? -$16 And some OCZ memory that's cheaper, and it get's down to $410.07 + shipping!

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Looks ok, however I don't like Samsung products and (as stated in other posts) I love Western Digital, so I'd swap the hard drive over. I don't know much about MSI boards as I tend to only use ASUS. I have a real hard on for Corsair PSU's at the moment - for no real reason other than they are modular and they where the first makers I saw do this plus the packaging they come in is really OTT. You’ll pay quite a premium for owning one though, I’d say at least x3 the price of your current PSU. I had system problems previously and Corsair’s support was very good so I’d also recommend Corsair memory. Perhaps other users have equally good experience with the component manufactures you have selected.

I used to build systems with really cheap parts with the attitude of “its cheap and it will do the job and last 2 years” but when my customers constantly had problems and my family’s stuff fell over it got annoying.

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if you want a good system with decent parts the this will be good


it also stays under your price range.

the CPU is really good for the price, it can overclock to 3.7GHz at 1.45V

the memory overclocks to ddr2 1100 or higher if you increase the voltage to it

the onboard video is ok for small easy to run games but if you want to do higher end games such as crysis, then add this videocard to your order


it will bring you to $54 over your max price when you add in shipping but it will allow you to run any game currently on the market maxed out.

I have built a similar system for a friend and I was able to hold around 30-40FPS on crysis maxed out at 1440x900

PS even though the motherboard says AM2+ it supports AM3 as listed on the manufactures website

just be sure to disable the onboard video if you ever do add a videocard as hybrid SLI = sucks as it is pretty much designed just for power saving (which doesn't do anything for a desktop PC )

PS I went with a dual core instead of a quad core in the price range because of the higher clock speed (the dual core CPU benchmarks higher when it comes to gaming than the quad core (especially since most programs are still single threaded ) but if you feel that quad core is a must for you then for $10 more you can go to quad core, you will have a lower clock speed per core and it wont overclock as high but for a multithreaded app, you will get more performance) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16819103706

(PS the quad core listed does not overclock to 3.9 GHz , it is only stable to around 3.5 the problem with the CPU is that you can push it much higher and give it much more voltage as long as the temperature is fine and at like 3.7-3.8GHz it will run your benchmarks but randomly ranging from a few minutes to a few hours to a day or so you will notice problems like the PC will 100% freeze with like a medium pitch sound coming from the speakers if you were listen to music, the system is just not reliable for long periods of use at such high clock speeds)

if you don't plan on doing much gaming then the quad core may benefit you more though

PS if you go with the dual core CPU or the quad core and also get the GTS 250, you should be able to run the latest PC games maxed out with no problem (you will have a pretty decent gaming PC)

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