Solved Friend will assemble custom PC using parts I buy on my own

December 9, 2013 at 19:05:49
Specs: Windows XP, AMD Athlon @ 1.6 GHz with 1.5 GB DDR3 Ram
Hey everyone,

I'm a total noob in building computers and stuff. A friend of mine said he'll help me put one together for free (he does this kind of thing for a living) but I have to pick out all the parts myself. Heres what I have so far:

Toshiba 2 TB HDD @ 7200 RPM w/ 64 MB cache
Team Vulcan 2 x 4 GB DDR3-2400 RAM
AMD FX4300 Quad Core @ 3.8 GHz w/ 8 MB cache
ASUS M5A97 AMD 970 SATA 6 GB/S USB 3.0
ASUS GeForce GTX 660

I really don't know anything about graphics cards or motherboards, so I have no idea if they're good enough for the processor or ram. I also have no idea about power supplies so any suggestions would be nice.

P.S. I got all this stuff off of newegg.com, if you need the links I have them...
Thanks!


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✔ Best Answer
December 10, 2013 at 15:21:19
I disagree with techninja. 1st decide on a CPU, then decide on a board. And the RAM you choose will be based on the CPU.

From the list you provided, I have a few questions...

1. why the huge 2TB HDD? Ever hear of the saying "don't put all your eggs in one basket"? It will cost a bit more, but consider a small SSD for the OS (120GB) & a standard HDD (1-2TB) for programs & storage.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

2. why get DDR3-2400 when the CPU only supports DDR3-1866?

http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Bulld...

3. the CPU/board choices are OK, but you might wanna consider going with the newest FM2 or FM2+ series instead.

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/ms...

3. if you're not a gamer, why waste your money on a GTX 660 (approx $200) when a lower end card like a Radeon HD 7770 (about $75) should be more than sufficient for your needs? The money you save & can go toward the SSD. Or better yet, get a socket FM2 APU like the A10 Richland & just use the integrated HD 8670D graphics. If you find the integrated graphics isn't good enough, you can always add a card later.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

If you go with the above CPU, the RAM should be DDR3-2133, other AMD CPUs only require DDR3-1866.

EDIT: I forgot the power supply:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

message edited by riider



#1
December 10, 2013 at 08:59:14
What are you going to be using your computer for? If you're not going to be doing gaming, you might even be able to save money by downgrading some of your parts. Gaming is hands down the activity that will be pushing your system the furthest, so you'll need parts that can handle the activity if you do. But if you're just using it to check Facebook and email and write Word documents on, you don't need anything fancy inside.

The most important consideration will be compatibility. You can't just buy parts, assemble them, and assume they'll work. The very 1st thing you have to determine is the motherboard - most motherboard will usually provide some sort of compatibility list or at least a utility telling you whether the parts are compatible or not.

In my opinion (and this is just my 2 cents) that's kind of a dick move on the part of your friend. Someone who is a Noob (as you say) shouldn't be picking out parts for something they don't know about.

My brother in law built a system for me before I became an IT guy, and he handled everything about it from picking the parts based on some general guidelines I gave him to installing Windows to putting the parts together and testing them. After giving him an idea of what I wanted, all I did was pay him.

That being said, since you're new to this I would say concentrate on the motherboard to start then contact the manufacturer and find out how they determine compatibility with every other part inside. If it's not compatible with the motherboard it's not going to work, period.


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#2
December 10, 2013 at 13:08:03
I'll probably be doing a bit of gaming, nothing too hard core or anything but maybe a few MMOs and stuff.

What type of motherboard brands would you suggest? Like I said, I really don't know that much about them, so any suggestions would be nice.

Also, do you know of any websites that could help me figure out what parts are compatible with each other? Do you think that kind of info would be on the manufacturers website?


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#3
December 10, 2013 at 14:13:09
What is your budget? What, if any parts will you reuse? Monitor, mouse, keyboard, etc?

What about a copy of Windows?


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Related Solutions

#4
December 10, 2013 at 15:21:19
✔ Best Answer
I disagree with techninja. 1st decide on a CPU, then decide on a board. And the RAM you choose will be based on the CPU.

From the list you provided, I have a few questions...

1. why the huge 2TB HDD? Ever hear of the saying "don't put all your eggs in one basket"? It will cost a bit more, but consider a small SSD for the OS (120GB) & a standard HDD (1-2TB) for programs & storage.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

2. why get DDR3-2400 when the CPU only supports DDR3-1866?

http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Bulld...

3. the CPU/board choices are OK, but you might wanna consider going with the newest FM2 or FM2+ series instead.

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/ms...

3. if you're not a gamer, why waste your money on a GTX 660 (approx $200) when a lower end card like a Radeon HD 7770 (about $75) should be more than sufficient for your needs? The money you save & can go toward the SSD. Or better yet, get a socket FM2 APU like the A10 Richland & just use the integrated HD 8670D graphics. If you find the integrated graphics isn't good enough, you can always add a card later.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

If you go with the above CPU, the RAM should be DDR3-2133, other AMD CPUs only require DDR3-1866.

EDIT: I forgot the power supply:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

message edited by riider


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#5
December 10, 2013 at 19:45:24
riider's answer is probably the best for your apparent use, though if you have the funds, you can easily go somewhere in between on the graphics card ($140. - $160. range) assuming you do some gaming and might do more in the future. If the funds are tighter, go with the better/newer CPU series for now and try to see if the graphics will do until such a time as you do more gaming. The parts you do not want to change later generally is the motherboard and probably the CPU so it is better to get the best you can afford on those core components since things like graphics are easier and cheaper to upgrade if it becomes appropriate. Lastly, don't cheap out on a power supply, go with a quality name brand and large enough for anything you are likely to be upgrading to within the next two years (the one riider linked to should fit that description).

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.


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#6
December 11, 2013 at 14:33:18
I'm gonna try to keep the budget under about $700. Thanks for the tips riider, ill think about getting a smaller HDD and a separate SDD, I just went with that one because on newegg.com it was the same price as some 1TB HDDs. I was thinking about getting a medium SDD but it was a little over my price range, but i didn't think about getting two.

I already have a monitor (ill just use my TV, it has HDMI, DVI, and VGA ports) and ill use the mouse and keyboard from my old computer. I can't transfer any parts over as my last computer was made in '98 so i think it runs on AXP power or something, so the parts won't be compatible

I'll downgrade the graphics card like you said, but i'm gonna keep that ram as i'm getting an amazing deal on it and its cheaper than a lot of the DDR3-1866 or DDR3-2133 ram cards.

Thanks a bunch guys, you've been a great help!


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#7
December 11, 2013 at 14:55:43
Oh, another question, do you guys know what kind of ram this processor supports? It was another one I was looking at, it has an integrated graphics card and stuff...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...

What do you think?


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#8
December 11, 2013 at 16:27:32
"do you guys know what kind of ram this processor supports?"

I already told you, DDR3-2133. Go to the following site & scroll down to Integrated peripherals / components > Memory controller

http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Bulld...

Here's a review: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews...

EDIT: I forgot to ask, which motherboard are you considering for the above CPU? I don't know what kind of deal you can get on DDR3-2400, but be aware that it won't run at that speed unless you overclock, so keep that in mind when looking at boards.

message edited by riider


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#9
December 12, 2013 at 13:14:22
I actually decided against getting that processor as its an APU and I didn't want to have to get a motherboard with an integrated graphics card and they tend to be lower quality.

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#10
December 12, 2013 at 15:25:12
"I actually decided against getting that processor as its an APU and I didn't want to have to get a motherboard with an integrated graphics card and they tend to be lower quality"

You are very incorrect. Are you reading any of the articles I'm posting for you or am I just wasting my efforts? The APU contains the graphics chip NOT the motherboard & the boards are NOT "lower quality". Where are you getting this info? If you'd have looked at the charts contained in the articles I posted, you'd see just how good those integrated graphics chips in the APUs are, especially the one in the A10 Richland. The socket FM2+ is the very latest platform available from AMD & the socket FS1B platform will be released in early/mid 2014. I suggest you do some reading.

Is AMD’s socket AM3+ a dead end?

AM3+ socket dead?

AMD updates 2014 Roadmap, Socket Am3+ is DEAD, Socket FM2+ Now AMD High end

Report: AMD FX-9590 Last Breed of AMD FX CPU?

I'll counter the above with a more recent article:

AMD: We Are Not EOL’ing FX Line of Microprocessors

In other words, the future of the socket AM3+ & FX-series is unclear.

message edited by riider


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#11
December 13, 2013 at 09:47:13
FM 1 & FM2 motherboards do not have integrated graphics. They are, however, mATX form. That means they usually have only 2 RAM slots and limited PCI slots. For many users that is not an issue.

If you are not a hardcore gamer and have a limit budget the processor riider suggested is a viable choice for you.

As far as quality goes there are budget brands and better brands. They both make full ATX and mATX boards. Look at the specs and the warranty period. Better brands will warranty for 3 years, lesser brands 1 or 2 years.

Decide what features you want on a board and use the advanced search feature at newegg.com.

The nature of the beast is that both Intel and AMD come out with new socket types to go with new chipsets. IMO looking at the socket type based on an upgrade path is a waste. You normally do not get a large enough boost to justify upgrading the CPU. Better to add RAM or an upgrade graphics card.


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