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Building First Computer – Help

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Tweak-Hunter, Apr 27, 2008.

  1. Tweak-Hunter

    Tweak-Hunter Private E-2

    I need help building a computer, I have some assembly experience but basically no experience in picking out (good) hardware.

    My desktop computers motherboard has gone bad after an electrical storm and I’m not entirely sure but I think I don’t think I’ll be able to use the hardrive on it either because I don’t think the bios on it will support anything but XP but I don’t really know because I am a newbie. However I don’t really care about the wimpy 80 GB hardrive on that machine anyway (there’s nothing important on that machine) I’ll use it as a second hardrive in my next machine if I can.

    I’ll be aiming for about 3-4 GB of ram on this next machine I’m not sure but I think the motherboard has something to do with what kind of ram you can use.
    When I was looking around on the internet, and I pulled up the following motherboard… http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000FVNWRC/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top/105-0613024-9501227 which looks promising, but I don’t really know.

    I’ve got a Radieon 9600 XT graphics card, and I don’t know weather I need a new one or not yet, also I’d like to have a big hard drive, because I intend to duel boot different operating systems on this computer.
    I also like to play games. :D
  2. BoredOutOfMyMind

    BoredOutOfMyMind Picabo, ICU

    TigerDirect has a good howto build a system.

    Tiger is an Amazon partner.
    They have barebones kits that are deals on their site as well as components.
  3. Fred_G

    Fred_G Heat packin' geek

  4. Tweak-Hunter

    Tweak-Hunter Private E-2

    So, If I buy that particular motherboard, will I have to buy a processor for it?
    Or does it come with one already?

    I think this (from the look of it) would be the best choice for this particular motherbord...

    I have an AMD Athlon XP processor in the motherboard that was fryed so maybe I'll just put that one into the motherboard as well as my RAM and graphics card and install a better processor later. (when I have the money)

    Then when I get it I can just swap them out and overclock it to 3.4 GHz

    Sound like a good plan?
  5. Fred_G

    Fred_G Heat packin' geek

    Re: Building First Computer – Help

    Check the specs of the CPU you have so you know everything is compatable before you start buying stuff...

  6. dlb

    dlb MajorGeek

    When building a PC, the main things to think about are: budget (how much do you want to spend); and, use (what will be the main usage of the PC). Then you have to decide on a CPU: AMD or Intel? Gamers tend to go for the AMD processors for whatever reason, but Intel has lots of support also and tends to win in most benchmarks, but then again, you can probably find a benchmark to support whatever outcome you want, so I don't put much faith in benchmarks. AMD chips tend to be a bit less costly than Intel chips in the same performance bracket. You said you'd be gaming, so you'll also need to pick a good video card that fits your budget. The main choices here are nVidia and ATI. Will you want to use dual (or triple or quad) cards in an SLI or Crossfire setup? Will you want to maybe go SLI/Crossfire in the future as an upgrade? These decisions will effect your choice of motherboard as it will need to support the features you're looking for. A motherboard that is SLI compatible (like the one linked to above) will NOT support Crossfire. So that means you'd have to use nVidia video cards. SLI = nVidia. Crossfire = ATI. Using the motherboard you linked to, you'd go with an AMD processor; get the fastest one you can afford and make sure the motherboard supports that exact CPU before you buy anything. Nobody likes surprises. When building a PC, surprises are generally not a good thing. That motherboard supports up to 2gb of DDR2 memory per slot (8gb max). Since 32bit operating systems can only address 3.2gb of memory, anything over that will not be used and is basically a waste. I'd recommend using 2 x 1gb and 2 x 512mb for 3gb total. It's a dual-channel board and that's why you wouldn't just get 3 sticks at 1gb each; you want to take advantage of the dual channels. Gaming is probably the most taxing thing for a PC so if you build a PC that will rock the games, you can be assured that it will do everything else well, and it'll do it fast. So.... since you already have the motherboard picked out, you need to select a CPU, some RAM, a video card (or two), and a hard drive. SATA2 hard drives are the standard these days and the price has really dropped so a 250gb drive is VERY affordable. Personally, I'd use the old 80gb drive as an external data storage unit by building it into an enclosure. Most new motherboards have only one IDE header and most people use it for their optical drives (CD/DVD), but SATA optical drives are available too....

    So there's a bunch to think about. I could keep going and going, but I'll stop.... for now ;)
    Good luck!!! I hope something I said was helpful!

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