I need a new system recommendation

It’s not going to be a gaming machine, just internet, office apps and dvd burning and light video editing. Right now I’m running a P3 733mhz with 448mb pc133 ram. I have 2 Liteon dvd burners (832s and 1633s) and 2 maxtor 160GB hd on a SATA/150 PCI card for storage and a 60 GB maxtor for OS and programs. I’m a little scared of the big hard drives in case of failure and didn’t want to put all my eggs in one basket.

Looking for a decent MB and processor combo and case/powersupply and ram size recommendation. Also probably gonna add at least one 160-250 GB drive for storage.


Where are you from…?

New Jersey - USA

If you’ve waited this long, do a dual core AMD system. That’s what I’m going to build when it’s finally out. I want to go dual AMD 64 bit cores, and an nVidia chipset. I dunno if I wanna go SLI or not. I’d also want some 10k rpm sata2 hard drives when they hit the shelves in raid 0. I could give a crap about PCI express, but I’m definetly going to go that route just because it’s what the standard will be. I think DDR2 is headed the way of rambus, so I don’t care about that. Besides, you can get just as good, if not better bandwidth with DDR on an AMD system. You probably won’t wanna do raid, or SLI, or need to update the hard drives, but you will want a dual core chip, whether you go intel or AMD. It will appear to the OS as two processors. I really like AMD’s integrated memory controller though. Plus the preschot chips are hard to cool, and don’t perform as well. I’m usually an Intel man, but this time I think AMD has my eye. :bigsmile:

Price (budget)?
Prefer Intel or AMD system?

@ Deer Slayer - I don’t wanna go top of the line just a system to speed up the dvd processing times with a powersupply and IDE connections to handle maybe 4-5 HDD and 2 burners

@zevia - $200-300 and no real preference to AMD or Intel


Pretty hard to buy anything with the upgradability that you want, without spending some dough… My idea of a cheap system, was when I bought my dell 8400 3.4ghz 1ghz ddr400, gt6800 video card, audigy platinum sound card, 20" ultra lcd, 2 sata hd’s (160 and 250), two 16x dual layer dvd burners, klipsch pro media 5.1 speakers for a total of $1700.00. It will do anything that I need it to do from gaming to hard core video editing. If you want to do any serious video editing, be prepared to spend at least $1000.00.

The last time I built my own PC was P-II ten years ago so I dont follow anymore, and for that price maybe others can give a hint.

This year alone I bought 6 Dell PC on deals for wife and friends, check http://deals.cdfreaks.com/ or other deals website. The price ranges from $499 -649 and includes 17" LCD, depends on specific deals.

The specs are:
Dell Dimension 4700
P4 3Ghz, 512mb RAM,
40-80GB HDD, CDRW,
8x AGP or PCI-E
Onboard video, 4 empty PCI slots
17" Dell E173FP (not good, cheap around $150-175), or
17" Dell Ultrasharp E1704FPT (very good and lots of features, MSRP $350)

Dell 4700 is the middle range for Dell PC, the upper one is 8400 series and XPS for gaming.

Here is the current dell deals (http://www1.us.dell.com/content/products/features.aspx/outrageous_desktops?c=us&cs=04&l=en&s=bsd

@zevia and harley2ride- Thanks I wasn’t looking for an entire system. I was gonna use my HDD’s, burners and monitor. I’m looking for a MOBO/processor combo with a decent case and powersupply I can put together to upgrade to so I can speed up backing up my DVD’s . No serious video editing. I took a look on pricewatch for the rough guesstimate, If I gotta spend a more bucks I will but I have no clue on a decent processor speed to get along with a decent motherboard.

If I gotta forget about the video editing, ah I was only gonna tinker with it anyway.


Get a good 400+ watt power supply (antec), and either an amd or intel processor, and at least 768mb of ram.

I’d just get a AMD Sempron CPU, anything more than that would be a waste of money for what you’re looking to do. RAM Is so cheap these days that you might as well get 1024Mb, if you’re on a tight budget then 512Mb is probably enough, just get from a decent brand like Corsair or Crucial. As for the PSU, you’ll need to work out how much power you need, I only like to use decent brands like Antec, Enermax etc. Motherboard, just get one that supports the rest of your components, if you’re not overclocking then you needn’t spend a fortune here, again I prefer to use trusted brands like Abit, ASUS, DFI, AOpen etc. If you’re looking for a decent case then I’d recommend a Silverstone Temjin, I have a TJ05 and it is excellent. Of course you could just use your old case and at the end of the day any only cheapo case will do, it’s just more hassle to install everything and it won’t look as good.

@harley2ride - got it 400W+ PSU and at least 768MB ram -THANKS (ooh I miss my '49 panhead)

@Mr. Horse Thanks - Sempron sounds good - 3000 or better I guess - gotta good suggestion for the MOBO for 6 IDE devices or maybe I’ll just use the PCI card again? Gonna use the old system with just a 30GB for general surfing in another room. I’ll pick a case (looks don’t matter it ain’t going nowhere) and PSU and follow you and harley2ride’s advice Antec…etc- I was looking at powmax stuff but wasn’t sure if they were good or not, the price looked great!!!

If that is all you’ll be using it for then why do you need a new system recommendation?
Your current system can do all that perfectly fine.

Getting a Sempron CPU is digging yourself into a hole. It’s upgrade path is virtually non-existant.
Unless you’re desperately looking for a quick one stop solution and plan to buy a new system next year, I wouldn’t recommend a Sempron.

@Lothario - it does it but I just want to speed up the encoding with shrink. I usually upgrade when what I want to do takes longer than I like - went from a 286,386,486 then a P90 to a PII-300 to what I have now PIII- 733. Surfing, office apps etc is fine but playing with shrink and the dvd’s takes a little too much time.


Well, I’d still go AMD dual core. You want to speed the encoding time up on DVD shrink, you need 4 things. First is a fast DVD ripper, a lot of the speed is the source drive. Second is a fast CPU, northwood intel chips are getting rare, prescott SUX, and AMD spanks the pants off either! So when they finally arrive, go for the bottom end AMD 64 dual core chip. It will improve multitasking IMMENSLY, and it won’t be much more $$$ than a single core chip of the same speed rating. No matter what you’re going to spend about the same $$$ on a mobo, and if you’re not going to use SLI, and some of the other stuff, you can save some $$$. The nVidia chipsets are starting to mature, and DDR ram is dirt cheap. If you go intel, you’ll either have to buy DDR2 or get a bastardized mobo based on a mixture of technologies that don’t belong together. Either way you go, if you don’t go PCI express, you’re hosing your upgradability. Third thing you need is memory bandwidth, which AMD’s integrated memory controller RULES for this. The fourth thing is a fast hard drive, you allready have sata drives. Getting them off the PCI bus will give them a LOT more throughput, so I’d say you’re set there. Honestly, A 32 bit CPU is a waste of money too, and the 64 bit intel dual core chips are EXTREMELY difficult to cool. They are overly hot power hogs, and I don’t think they’ll last long with all of the electron leakage they suffer. If you want to upgrade to something truly worth while, taht’s the way to go. My second choice would be an 875 chipset mobo and a NORTHWOOD 800 mhz bus CPU. That’s mature technology that is extremely reliable, and still very fast. It’s not going to be any cheaper than an AMD 64 system though! :iagree:

How come? They come in Socket 754 variants, there’s no reason why you can’t upgrade to a Athlon64 at a later date. Besides it wouldn’t really matter if you did go for a Socket A setup considering you can buy a new motherboard for less than 50 bucks, it hardly prevents you from upgrading your machine.

im with Deer Slayer on this…if you can afford it, go dual-core A64. if not, go lower end single core, socket 939 A64 (most mobo’s will be dual-core capable/compatible). you’ll most likely want some dual-channel memory loving for re-encoding/transcoding, so socket 939 is the way to go.

you can pair a Winchester 3200+ and good mobo for ~$300.

you could also look into a complete ABS system for a little more money (and have parts to mix and match for the future): http://www2.newegg.com/ProductSort/SubCategory.asp?SubCategory=10

Athlon 64 use Socket 939.
Semprons use Socket 754.

If you get a Sempron and decide to upgrade to an Athlon 64 processor, you have to change your motherboard as well.

Semprons use socket A cant remember the exact pin as they use different variations like 462 etc
both amd 64’s are socket 939 and 754 the newer faster of the two being the 939 as it has more pins and is faster how do i kno because i have used a few of each in the last month mainly gigabyte boards.