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  • Build My Own Computer

    I'm building from the ground up so where do I start?

    Should I start with the motherboards or pick a processer first?

    Looking to be a gaming system so maybe the graphics card is a beginning? It's going to be a several month build so no hurry on parts but I don't want to buy into something that's outdated next year.

    Any advice would be helpful and places to look on the internet for good prices

    This Pentium II is starting to make crunching noises...is that bad?

    Cases?
    Power supplys?
    Fan systems?
    Hard drives?
    Memory? what type is best?

    I used to keep up with this stuff but there is so much on the market I got lost in all the jargon

  • #2
    Re: Build My Own Computer

    Try the CDW catalog. Or maybe http://www.cdw.com

    One of the guys I used to work with was a real computer nut. He had the CDW catalog and PCGamer mags all the time.

    I looked at some of them. What was interesting in the PCGamer reviews they would always be testing the top of the line systems-manufactured and built. They would consider something like 5 second faster load times just spectacular and go crazy for slightly faster frames per second.

    Seems like alienware was a top performer then. Probably get some comparable specs from them and then build from the CDW catalog.

    J.C.

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    • #3
      Re: Build My Own Computer

      http://www.alienware.com

      Good luck.

      J.C.

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      • #4
        Re: Build My Own Computer

        www.TigerDirect.com



        Figured I'd spam this thread up too!
        Northern Kentucky Plumbers Twitter Feed | Plumbing Videos

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        • #5
          Re: Build My Own Computer

          PC,

          I would look for components on either Newegg or TigerDirect; that is where I got the bits and pieces for the computer I just put together. It is the first one I've done in 8 years or so, and my first NewEgg transactions; but I've used TD before that.

          How I did it, is I knew I wanted AMD (because I have a bit of brand loyalty), then just picked a reasonably priced CPU and Motherboard that matched. For Graphics, I like NVidia.

          What are you looking for out of the system, that might help in what you get for cases etc. If you aren't too concerned about noise, then just pick a case that will fit in your space. Bigger is better in general. I've got no good advice on a power supply. Right now for a hard drive, SATA seems to be what you want. I got a 500GB. If you aren't using it for videos; I don't see the need to go bigger. My laptop only has 100GB, and that isn't constraining. Memory basically boils down to more is better; and faster bus speeds can matter. Size will matter more than bus speeds. I built my system with 2GB, I wouldn't go any less; and more may not help. More than 4GB probably won't help.

          Charles

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          • #6
            Re: Build My Own Computer

            Here's another tip when shopping the sites mentioned. livesearch is running promotions all the time to try to take some of googles and yahoos business as search engines so they are giving cash back for purchases a lot of the time. If you set up an account with them and search through them you can get anywhere from 5% to 40% off purchases at different times. Ebay and the hp site too. On black friday it was 40% off anything on the hp site for about 12 hours. the site was super bogged down but lots of people got huge bargains that day. I didn't.

            I DID get 30% off my new hp laptop on ebay through them though, and newegg and tiger are both on there a lot too. Check it out, it is real money back--not a scam.

            I love my new laptop but I upsold myself to a model that has WAY more than I'll ever use. I wanted blu-ray and a 17" screen and got it for $875 delivered though....and now that my tool habit is on ice I needed something to....need.

            I also saved a bundle on my present shopping. I'm sure it will work for a lot of tool sites as well


            Eli
            A good carpenter makes few mistakes, a great carpenter can fix his own.

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            • #7
              Re: Build My Own Computer

              Even the new computer doesn't do nothing for my run on sentence problem though.
              A good carpenter makes few mistakes, a great carpenter can fix his own.

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              • #8
                Re: Build My Own Computer

                More power to you my friend. That should be quite the task your gonna take on. Maybe, some woodworker around here can build you a case made out of Tiger Wood or something. Me personally, I'd just rather buy the machine made to my specs, this way I'm good for a year incase it breaks down. By the way, how are your warranty?????

                Good luck with your build.....
                Great Link for a Construction Owner/Tradesmen, and just say Garager sent you....

                http://www.contractorspub.com

                A good climbing rope will last you 3 to 5 years, a bad climbing rope will last you a life time !!!

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                • #9
                  Re: Build My Own Computer

                  With a laptop I would always purchase a service plan. You can't build them, and you can't fix them. However, with a desktop if you can build it you can probably fix it; and the individual components aren't too expensive.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Build My Own Computer

                    Originally posted by cpw View Post
                    With a laptop I would always purchase a service plan. You can't build them, and you can't fix them. However, with a desktop if you can build it you can probably fix it; and the individual components aren't too expensive.
                    I was wondering about this. I have a one year warranty from hp. Is that not enough/ I had an opportunity to get one through square-trade...i think I still do. Would you recommend it? I kind of always thought it was a bad gamble...

                    Eli
                    A good carpenter makes few mistakes, a great carpenter can fix his own.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Build My Own Computer

                      It depends on how long you want it to last, and if it is big enough money to you. The last laptop I bought in 2000 was $3000. I got a 3 year service contract on that one, it paid off big time because that machine when through 4 keyboards, 3 mother boards, and an LCD. If I bought a laptop for $1000, depending on the cost of the contract I might do the same. For $500, I would just take a chance.

                      To me, it is no different than a range or dryer. I have no chance of fixing one of those either. My range was $1700, so the $150 for a 4 year service contract made sense. My dryer was $280, so the $150 made no sense; because if it breaks I can go to Lowes; spend $280 and get a brand new one without any undue hardship.

                      I generally expect to lose the money I put up, but for essential things in the $700 plus range, which I can't just go replace on a whim I am willing to make sure that I get at least several years of value out of them.

                      BTW: The reason laptops are so expensive to fix is that they have custom parts for everything. Your tower can usually be fixed with a part from most any vendor. Because of the lock-in, things like a laptop motherboard can be $1000. The one I bought for a desktop was around $75.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Build My Own Computer

                        If you're building your own system www.newegg.com should be you're first buying resource. Great place with awesome service and prices. If you're building a gaming system you should stick to Intel for now. Usually AMD and Intel trade the performance crown back and forth but AMD has been lagging for the last round for some time now.

                        For a good motherboard brand I recommend Asus. They are a bit more expensive but top notch. There's also a lot of other good makers though. Don't skimp out on power supplies. Buy a top brand like Antec or BFG. Cheapo power supplies will eventually burn out and they usually take other components with them. It is the one part that has the capability of damaging other components in the system if it fails.

                        Check out www.anandtech.com and www.hardocp.com . They will have all the latest benchmarks and performance tests on just about everything out on the market as well as just about all the technical info you may need.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Build My Own Computer

                          Originally posted by cpw View Post
                          It depends on how long you want it to last, and if it is big enough money to you. The last laptop I bought in 2000 was $3000. I got a 3 year service contract on that one, it paid off big time because that machine when through 4 keyboards, 3 mother boards, and an LCD. If I bought a laptop for $1000, depending on the cost of the contract I might do the same. For $500, I would just take a chance.

                          To me, it is no different than a range or dryer. I have no chance of fixing one of those either. My range was $1700, so the $150 for a 4 year service contract made sense. My dryer was $280, so the $150 made no sense; because if it breaks I can go to Lowes; spend $280 and get a brand new one without any undue hardship.

                          I generally expect to lose the money I put up, but for essential things in the $700 plus range, which I can't just go replace on a whim I am willing to make sure that I get at least several years of value out of them.

                          BTW: The reason laptops are so expensive to fix is that they have custom parts for everything. Your tower can usually be fixed with a part from most any vendor. Because of the lock-in, things like a laptop motherboard can be $1000. The one I bought for a desktop was around $75.
                          It's possible to fix laptops but it certainly is a lot more difficult. Lots of micro screws and delicate plastic trim. I usually buy IBM/Lenovo thinkpads and don't bother with the extended service plans. These models are so popular that just about any proprietary part that goes wrong can be had on ebay for much cheaper than any service plan. I've gone though keyboards which cost $25 to replace, a screen for $65 and a motherboard for about $90 (not on the same one though!). The service plans are at least like $300 for 3 years and most of the parts died after that. All of the generic stuff like like hard drives, ram, cpu's are not worth paying more for extended service since by the time you might need the service there are newer ones out in the market for much cheaper.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Build My Own Computer

                            If your building...buy 1 year old technology... so much cheaper for close to the same performance.

                            I have always built my own systems from the ground up. fun stuff but takes probably a day to build and install and tweak to get to the point where you have everything running the way you like it.

                            I have a lot of friends that want to build their own and I usually tell them its cheaper and easier to buy a low end Dell.

                            If you already have your monitor this machine should last you another 7 years. Better than the box I built for 800 less than a year ago.

                            http://www.techbargains.com/news_displayItem.cfm/146515

                            BTW... building your own takes longer too with a lot more to pay attention to... components from different stores... Shipping time, rebates, configuration...

                            If you are dead set on building your own you will need

                            Motherboard (I like ASUS)
                            Case with power supply (500w+)
                            Memory (4gigs)
                            Hard Drive (500 gig+)
                            DVD Burner
                            Video Card (if not built in to motherboard)
                            Sound Card ("")
                            CPU (I'd recommend a quad core pentium... they overclock nice)
                            SOFTWARE (Windows, office, etc.)
                            Peripherals (mouse, keyboard, etc.)

                            Just buy the Dell

                            Josh

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                            • #15
                              Re: Build My Own Computer

                              Originally posted by Josh View Post
                              CPU (I'd recommend a quad core pentium... they overclock nice)
                              SOFTWARE (Windows, office, etc.)
                              Peripherals (mouse, keyboard, etc.)
                              You may be able to scavenge your software from the old machine; same with the mouse, keyboard, etc.

                              I'll disagree with Josh about quad core; most software doesn't take advantage of multi-core well. Also, I'll assume you don't want to overclock. But either way, you need to make sure to get a good fan/heatsink. My CPU fan costs as much as my CPU (it is 2lbs of copper).

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