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Build for a Buddy, 300$ !?!? Help

Gjohnst4

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#1
So, my friend who knows nothing about computers wants to play starcraft II.
He has asked me to build him something, and gave me the very low budget of 300$ with a little wiggle room.

Side notes:
I am giving him a nice AM2+ Heatsink (A Triton)
I am also giving him, for now at least, two 2600xt 512mb ddr3 sapphire vid cards.

The build obviously needs to support crossfire and I want to make it the most future proof as possible for him so upgrades will be easy once he has the money.

The Build:

LITE-ON Black 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 24X ...

APEX Vortex 3620 SGCC / ABS ATX Mid Tower Gaming C...

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST3500418AS 500GB 7200 R...

JetWay JHA07-ULTRA-LF AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX ...

LOGISYS Computer PS575XBK 575W ATX12V SLI Ready ...

G.SKILL 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600...

AMD Athlon II X2 240 Regor 2.8GHz 2 x 1MB L2 Cache...

Its basically a AM3 790GX, Athlon II x2 240 with 2GB DDR3 1600 and a 500gb 7200rpm HD.
Then all the peripherals (case, cd/dvd burner, psu..)

The total came to 334.15$

If you think you could build it better for the price then by all means send me the list!! or if you have any parts that would work that you will sell for less let me know.

Also, I have NO IDEA what monitor he is going to use, still working on that. :banghead:
 
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#2
Forget about the 2600 XT in crossfire, it will not play games at a reasonable level, trying to play a new game like starcraft, forget it. Maybe sell it on ebay?

Remove the motherboard, its a AM2+ board only based on the old 790 chipset. Get a new AM3 785G chipset.

That PSU is junk, it should still work though but do not count on reliability.

Do not get 2X1GBs of ram because it will stop you from upgrading all the way upto 8 GBs in the distant future. 1x2GB seems more ideal.
 

PVTCaboose1337

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#3
For PSU get something like this. A little more cash, but it will never fail.

FSP Group SAGA+ 500R 500W ATX2.2 Power Supply comp...

For ram get a 2gb stick. He can get 2 more gb later on.

The video cards you are giving him are meh, but he cannot complain about handouts. If he wants to get a new gfx card later on, he can upgrade. IMO don't start a new computer person off with 2 video cards. He will be very confused, very fast.
 
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#4
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#7
Honestly, you need to talk to him about upping his budget alittle more. $450 to 500 is what he should expect to spend for a half-way decent gaming system.
 
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#8
Yea, $300 is a bit too low for a gaming system. Very doable for just a basic box, but not after you add in a decent video card that will be worth SLIing or Crossfiring later on and the PSU to support both.
 
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#10

Gjohnst4

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#11
Thanks for the builds guys! I am well aware that the 2600xt are junk. Im trying to invest in the rest of the system and let him invest in gpu's in time as I teach him. The 2600's are just to hold him over. He doesnt have a monitor yet- I might let him borrow a 19
 
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#12
Just a reminder if you plan on going with the build you presented to us eariler. The ram and the mobo don't mesh.
 
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#13

Gjohnst4

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#14
That open box mobo has replaced my silly choice
 
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#15
That open box mobo has replaced my silly choice
I have the same one it's soild but it didn't unlock both my X2 PII or my tri-core...:cry:

Any thoughts on going tri-core?
 

Gjohnst4

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#16
Athlon II x3 rana 3.0 is now in and recommended cooler master psu
 
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#17

Gjohnst4

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#18
Switched to suggested 2 gb single stick. Thanks!
 

Gjohnst4

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#19
Question, I also have an 8800 gt lying around. Its only 256mb....assuming he ends up using a 19" lcd, will the crossfire 2600xt 512 ddr3 run starcraft 2 better? Might be a question for fraps and trial
 
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#20
I bought 4gb of that ram a year ago. Solid find...
Yeah and I love how compatible it is. Like right now I have that 2GB stick running with a different brand, different speed 1GB stick and it works fine. My motherboard automatically OC's the slower stick and downclocks the ADATA so that the frequencies match.
 
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#21
Question, I also have an 8800 gt lying around. Its only 256mb....assuming he ends up using a 19" lcd, will the crossfire 2600xt 512 ddr3 run starcraft 2 better? Might be a question for fraps and trial
If he only wants to spend $300.00 I say 2x2600xts are great for him, everyone needs to remember the $300.00 price line. I think people forget what the 2600xts could do, I own one and it is great for all my needs.
 
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#22
Question, I also have an 8800 gt lying around. Its only 256mb....assuming he ends up using a 19" lcd, will the crossfire 2600xt 512 ddr3 run starcraft 2 better? Might be a question for fraps and trial
The 8800 GT would be much faster than the CF 2600 XT it wouldnt even be funny. a single 8600 GT about on par with a 2600 XT, 8600 GT in SLI are significantly slower than a 8800 GT. Unfortunately these cards are so old that most of the good links are dead but I have a good memory and did all this research back in 2006 :p
 
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#24
I got a score of 8k with a single 2600xt OC in 06, 2 2600xt are quit fast and the 2600xts have 512mb,
the 8800gt only has 256mb that will make a big differents at this speed .
 
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#25
Thanks, wow, these graphs look ancient.

But yeah as you can see the 2600 XT CF gets owned by the 8800 GTS 320 MB. Bear in mind the 8800 GTS 320MB (G80) is slower than the 8800 GT (G92) 256MB.