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Looking for best desktop deal around $500

Posted on 2004-10-21
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Last Modified: 2010-04-25
I need to upgrade my desktop computer in order to play EverQuest2 which is going to release next month, but I really don't have much budge to spend on it.

The desktop I am looking for is (I don't need the monitor):
1. Speed (CPU)
2. CD writer (DVD combo or DVD writer is even better)

I already have 40G HD, 128MB video card, network card, 512 Ram that I can put into this new computer if needed, so those stuff is not that important to me.
But something extra is always good, if the price is good ;)

BTW, my current computer is P3 800MHZ.

Please let me know if you know any good deal that is best for my situation, even the refurbished is fine with me.

Thanks.
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Question by:twkliu
    20 Comments
     
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    by:tosh9iii
    COMPUTER 3.2GHZ DESKTOP PENTIUM 4 P4 system PC 3.2 new
    w/ DVD BURNER DVD PLAYER CD BURNER ONLY $479!!!!

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=52476&item=5131404201&rd=1
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    Expert Comment

    by:hauk1net
    I say replace your motherboard.  This one will support your old SDRAM or new DDR memory.  That's unusual and could save you significant money.  It also supports 533 mHz P4 processors, which go up to over 3 gHz.  It supports 8x AGP, which is state of the art. And the board is priced low.  CD burners are cheap.  You have the memory, drive, and video card.  You'd be able to do this pretty cheap.

    http://www.google.com/froogle?q=asrock+m266a&btnG=Search+Froogle

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    Author Comment

    by:twkliu
    I like the price of this motherboard, but how about the CPU?
    Any good deal on the CPU? I prefer P4 because I never have the chance to use others, but I heard people say AMD is good and cheap.
    And if I change my motherboard, do I have to change my computer case or any other components also?
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    LVL 69

    Expert Comment

    by:Callandor
    If you want value for gaming applications, AMD is the way to go.  Here's a very overclockable setup:

    Albatron KX400-8XV PRO V2.0 $46
    http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=13-170-009&depa=0

    Barton Retail 2800+ $147
    http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproductdesc.asp?description=19-103-377&DEPA=0

    Kingston 512MB PC3200  $79
    http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=20-141-424&depa=0
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    Expert Comment

    by:eccs19
    "I like the price of this motherboard, but how about the CPU?
    Any good deal on the CPU? I prefer P4 because I never have the chance to use others, but I heard people say AMD is good and cheap.
    And if I change my motherboard, do I have to change my computer case or any other components also?"
     
    Just a note.  I have used these AS-Rock boards, and they seem good for the money.  One thing you may want / need to look at is your power supply.  The AS-Rock boards will accept the older P3 power supplies, but if your power supply is 300W or less, you may want to invest in a good quality PSU to replace your old one.
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    Expert Comment

    by:eccs19
    This here is a nice little kit.  I have bought a simular one.  Mine was the same, minus CPU & RAM.  Has a extra AGP port to add your old card if you want.  Only supports DDR Ram, I'm not sure if your old ram is DDR or SDRAM.

    http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=904341&sku=S450-3204
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    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    by:tosh9iii
    I thought you might be interested in this:

    Mad Dog Multimedia Dominator 6-in-1 Internal DVD-R/-RW Drive  $9 after rebate

    http://www.officemax.com/max/solutions/product/prodBlock.jsp?BV_UseBVCookie=yes&expansionOID=-536892754&prodBlockOID=537257790
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    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    by:tosh9iii
    eMachines T3085 AMD Athlon XP 3000+ / 512MB DDR / 160GB HDD / DVD+/-RW / Windows XP Home / Refurbished Desktop PC   $399 after rebate

    http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?sourceid=qIqsQXleZz8eAmWZbUXS&siteid=0040212845&Sku=E400-T3085&EdpNo=934501&SRCCODE=BEFREE
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    LVL 8

    Expert Comment

    by:stockhes

    All you can use from your current machine is CASE & drives and maybe GFX

    Case only if it's generic Not Dell or COMPAQ unless you are up to severe casemodding

    Be aware Mobo and CASE size must fit :ATX ,baby ATX micro ATX and so on


    You'll need

    PSU with ATX12v(4pin) at least 18 amps on 12 volt rail
    MOBO
    CPU+heatsink+fan
    DDR ram at least 512 MB

    If you like to build yourself go ahead, but it will be easier to buy a new upgrade case/barebone
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    Author Comment

    by:twkliu
    Ok, I just got two 256MB DDR rams from my friend, so that means I can save some money on it.
    So, the only thing left is motherboard and CPU (maybe also DVD writer), so I think I might build it myself starting from new motherboard and CPU, and hopefully I don't need to change my case and PS, etc.
    This way, I can spend less than $200! :)
    0
     
    LVL 8

    Accepted Solution

    by:
    If you're looking for something cheap and are worried that your case / PS won't work, check this out.

    Tower Case
    ECS KM800-M2 Socket 478 Motherboard
    Keyboard
    Mouse
    Speakers
    Power Cable
    Serial ATA Cable
    Serial ATA Power Cable
    Nero Burning Software CD
    Motherboard Support CD
    CD-RW Quick Installation Guide
    ECS PM800-M2 User's Guide
    RJ-11 Cable
    Bag of Extra Screws

    It's a cheap system, but what do you expect for the money.  

    http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1034877&Sku=N52-3015

    Just add your hard drive, your RAM, a processor, and your basically ready to go. It has on board video, and also has a AGP slot if you want to put a GOOD card in later. Rebate ends soon though.
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    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    by:tosh9iii
    twkliu  is that 256 mb ddr ram you got from your friend the same type of ram (512 mb) you currently have?
    0
     
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    by:tosh9iii
    Go to this webpage:
    EVEREST Home Edition v1.51
    http://www.lavalys.com/products/download.php?pid=1&lang=en&pageid=3

    download>install>open>Computer>Summary>Right Click>Copy> and post it here
    0
     

    Author Comment

    by:twkliu
    --------[ Summary ]-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

        Computer:
          Operating System                                  Microsoft Windows XP Professional
          OS Service Pack                                   Service Pack 2
          Internet Explorer                                 6.0.2900.2180 (IE 6.0 SP2)
          DirectX                                           4.09.00.0904 (DirectX 9.0c)
          Computer Name                                     KRISTY-HOME (Kristy's main desktop computer)
          User Name                                         Kristy

        Motherboard:
          CPU Type                                          Intel Pentium IIIE, 800 MHz (6 x 133)
          Motherboard Name                                  Asus CUSL2-C  (6 PCI, 1 AGP, 1 CNR, 3 DIMM)
          Motherboard Chipset                               Intel Solano i815EP
          System Memory                                     512 MB  (SDRAM)
          BIOS Type                                         Award Medallion (08/03/01)
          Communication Port                                Communications Port (COM1)
          Communication Port                                Communications Port (COM2)
          Communication Port                                ECP Printer Port (LPT1)

        Display:
          Video Adapter                                     NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200  (128 MB)
          3D Accelerator                                    nVIDIA GeForce FX 5200

        Multimedia:
          Audio Adapter                                     ESS Technology Allegro-1.COMM AudioDrive

        Storage:
          IDE Controller                                    Intel(r) 82801BA Bus Master IDE Controller
          Floppy Drive                                      Floppy disk drive
          Disk Drive                                        Generic STORAGE DEVICE USB Device
          Disk Drive                                        Generic STORAGE DEVICE USB Device
          Disk Drive                                        Generic STORAGE DEVICE USB Device
          Disk Drive                                        Maxtor 6Y080L0  (80 GB, 7200 RPM, Ultra-ATA/133)
          Disk Drive                                        WDC WD400BB-00DEA0  (37 GB, IDE)
          Disk Drive                                        Generic STORAGE DEVICE USB Device
          Optical Drive                                     CD-ROM Drive/F5D
          SMART Hard Disks Status                           OK

        Partitions:
          C: (NTFS)                                         38154 MB (13361 MB free)
          D: (NTFS)                                         76245 MB (52686 MB free)

        Input:
          Keyboard                                          Standard 101/102-Key or Microsoft Natural PS/2 Keyboard
          Mouse                                             PS/2 Compatible Mouse

        Network:
          Network Adapter                                   Macronix MX98715-Based Ethernet Adapter (Generic)  (192.168.0.3)

        Peripherals:
          Printer                                           Canon Bubble-Jet BJC-2100
          Printer                                           Microsoft Office Document Image Writer
          USB1 Controller                                   Intel 82801BA(M) ICH2 - USB Controller 1 [B-1]
          USB1 Controller                                   Intel 82801BA(M) ICH2 - USB Controller 2 [B-1]
          USB Device                                        USB Mass Storage Device
    0
     
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    by:tosh9iii
    Your 512 mb is SDRAM, you do know that you can't combine that with the 2x256 mb DDR ram you got from your friend, right?
    0
     

    Author Comment

    by:twkliu
    I know, so I am just going to use that two 256mb DDR rams.
    0
     
    LVL 8

    Expert Comment

    by:eccs19
    Did you actually pick up that barebones system?  I hope it works out for you.  I have purchased from them in the past, and have been pleased.  Thanks for the points.
    0
     

    Author Comment

    by:twkliu
    I got the AMD Athlon 64 3200+ with mother board combo deal at Fry's for $240, and I am gald that I don't need to change the case and PS.
    But if I ever need to change them, then I will get that barebones system that you suggested.
    I really like that deal.
    Thanks for all the information that you have provided.
    0
     

    Expert Comment

    by:kamleshmistry
    Dell has pretty good deals...
    Dell Dimension 3000 is about 500 bucks...
    You can customize it according to your liking...
    For a limited time, free monitor upgrade to flat panel, 10 percent off, and free shipping...
    Pretty good deal, I think...


    0
     

    Expert Comment

    by:kamleshmistry
    I forot to mention the free memory upgrade as well before Wed...
    0

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