• Guest, The rules for the P & N subforum have been updated to prohibit "ad hominem" or personal attacks against other posters. See the full details in the post "Politics and News Rules & Guidelines."

Info Found an old hardware price sheet from ?? (2001 ??) You won't believe it. The CPU prices especially !

Page 2 - Seeking answers? Join the AnandTech community: where nearly half-a-million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,964
335
126
things were changing so fast back then, and so was pricing
I remember buying some really decent (with massive OC potential) hardware for cheap in 2003 specifically.
 

CP5670

Diamond Member
Jun 24, 2004
4,489
58
91
The big price inflation has been with video cards, and everything else is pretty reasonable now compared to 20 years ago. My first video card was a $150 Voodoo2 that I put into a Compaq OEM box we had in 1998 (P2-450mhz and 128MB memory) to play Descent 2 and Unreal. As others said though, desktop PCs were much more important back then and did everything that phones/laptops do today. CPUs cost more but also had a much bigger impact on performance, and you could notice the difference in web browsing, games, etc. I used numerous cheap $200-300 CPUs with 50% overclocks from 2000 up to 2014 or so. I think I still have some old Opterons and DFI Lanparty boards lying around that I never got around to putting on ebay.
 

chrisjames61

Senior member
Dec 31, 2013
655
373
136
of course remember how much you could do on your computer back then? how loading a photo was like a slow process you got to see the top of the head, then the eyes then the shoulders then the..... now days computers are less useful since you can do almost everything on your phone / tablet, sorta like a digital camera, not so useful anymore unless you pay 600+$ and like to carry around a bulky item (not exactly pocketable)

I feel like cpu's are still overpriced. Opteron 165/ barton mobile chip in a desktop where great deals.
Trying to do things like productivity apps on a phone is worse than getting your teeth pulled. I rather use a pencil and paper. Nothing beats a mouse, keyboard and a 27" monitor.
 

Panino Manino

Senior member
Jan 28, 2017
245
260
106
For what I remember PC parts were much more expensive back then, specially processors and I have the feeling that having the higher prices was actually something to be proud off. Meant you where the best.

Prices are not so high anymore (specially after Ryzen), and anyway, technology scales. Do you really need the best and most expensive chip? No, you don't, just like in the 2000's, when I bought a low-end Athlon 64 X2 that served me well for ten long years!
Yes, you could overclock to scary levels but today clock doesn't matter anymore and what makes the most difference in perceived performance are other components, like SSDs and GPUs.

What I'm trying to say is that people because spoiled very fast by Ryzen and are not thinking much about all they are actually receiving for the price being asked.
 

Ranulf

Golden Member
Jul 18, 2001
1,619
144
106
I can't remember what I paid for a Pentium2 400mhz in 1998 but I know the total system price (custom build not OEM) was around $2k. MSRP via CPU world says it was $824 in April 1998.


Three years later in 2001 I was buying an AMD 1ghz Duron for sub $100. I think the cpu, K7s5a mobo (ECS) and ram was just under $200.


 

Markfw

CPU Moderator, VC&G Moderator, Elite Member
Super Moderator
May 16, 2002
20,812
8,997
136
I can't remember what I paid for a Pentium2 400mhz in 1998 but I know the total system price (custom build not OEM) was around $2k. MSRP via CPU world says it was $824 in April 1998.


Three years later in 2001 I was buying an AMD 1ghz Duron for sub $100. I think the cpu, K7s5a mobo (ECS) and ram was just under $200.


I was buying AMD at that time for that reason. They were almost as fast as Intel, and WAY cheaper.
 

mindless1

Diamond Member
Aug 11, 2001
5,396
452
126
Some of those prices look a little high like full retail for higher end parts, while there were deeper discounts to be had back then, if you didn't insist on top shelf stuff.

For example I just dug up a receipt for a 20GB Maxtor HDD bought in 2001, it was $99, BUT I had a $30 off coupon at OfficeDepot, and a $30 rebate, so it was $40 total. Heh, my receipt is named maxtor 20gb hdd & pepsi, so presumably I had to buy the pepsi to bump the order up to $100 to use the $30 off coupon.

The next year, 2002 I got a 40GB from Staples for $80 - $15 off coupon, - $30 rebate = $35.

In 2001 I got an originally $160, 17" monitor from Staples, but used a $30 off $150 coupon, and there was a $100 rebate, so it cost me $30. Sometimes there were bonus stackable coupon codes to get things like a B&W portable TV or set of luggage free.

In 2002, I got an Athlon XP 1700 from Newegg for $63, and an XP 1600 for $60. IIRC this was intentional because it gave more o'c headroom.

Memory, sometime around 2002 you could get 256MB PC133 modules nearly or entirely free after rebate. I swung some deal at Officemax for KByte Memory and a Cendyne 48X CDRW for about $30 total after a coupon code and rebates. Soon thereafter, CDRW drives were free after rebate and not just off brands, a few I got were Sony or Lite-On.
 
Last edited:

mindless1

Diamond Member
Aug 11, 2001
5,396
452
126
of course remember how much you could do on your computer back then? how loading a photo was like a slow process you got to see the top of the head, then the eyes then the shoulders then the.....
You must be thinking of 15 years earlier loading things off a floppy. By 2001, photos loaded practically as fast as they do today, for two reasons. 1) They were lower resolution. 2) Software wasn't bloated. In 2001 I was using Paint Shop Pro 7, and the entire installation file for it was about 28MB and over 2/3rds that was extra textures & such.
 

CP5670

Diamond Member
Jun 24, 2004
4,489
58
91
You must be thinking of 15 years earlier loading things off a floppy. By 2001, photos loaded practically as fast as they do today, for two reasons. 1) They were lower resolution. 2) Software wasn't bloated. In 2001 I was using Paint Shop Pro 7, and the entire installation file for it was about 28MB and over 2/3rds that was extra textures & such.
I actually have that still installed, that specific version. I used some effects in it for a mod I created a long time ago, and keep it around to update some graphics in it when needed.
 

Martimus

Diamond Member
Apr 24, 2007
4,453
68
91
I was buying AMD at that time for that reason. They were almost as fast as Intel, and WAY cheaper.
Same here. The first computer I built myself was a K6 233MHz because it was so much cheaper than a Pentium Pro, but was far better in integer calculations. I stayed with AMD after that until Conroe. I recently came back with Zen 2, and I think I'm going to waste some money upgrading to Zen3 even though my computer does everything I want it to just fine.

(I will admit to having an Intel 8088 and Pentium 60Mhz before I got the AMD system, but those were pre-built.)
 

killster1

Diamond Member
Mar 15, 2007
5,520
289
126
Trying to do things like productivity apps on a phone is worse than getting your teeth pulled. I rather use a pencil and paper. Nothing beats a mouse, keyboard and a 27" monitor.
you are not aware you can use a 55" tv with blutooth mouse / keyboard with your phone? i have a galaxy s10 hooked up to one for fun its even got wired Ethernet. Honestly i just hooked it up for fun to try out but it works just fine. USb C hub ftw
 

mindless1

Diamond Member
Aug 11, 2001
5,396
452
126
I actually have that still installed, that specific version. I used some effects in it for a mod I created a long time ago, and keep it around to update some graphics in it when needed.
I still have it installed too, for simple things I can use it faster, though it has memory limitations and isn't multi-threaded so it bogs down on anything very large or with complex processing. I probably use it most with a Ulead Smartsaver plugin to optimize images down to a smaller size for forums that have image file size and resolution limitations.
 

VirtualLarry

Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
49,235
5,469
126
I had bounced between AMD and Intel for a while.

My first PC was a hand-me-down from my father, an 8086, w/8087 co-proc (back then, the "FPU" was a totally separate, optional, chip).

I had so much fun programming text-based image-warping software. It was kind of like an early form of texture-mapping.

Eventually, I think I MAY have had a 286 as a hand-me-down as well, later on, I'm a little fuzzy on that.

But MY FIRST (purchased) PC, was an AMD 386DX-40. Because Intel's 386DX CPU only went to 33Mhz, and AMD's went to 40Mhz. (By then, I think, early Intel 486 CPUs were out, but they were oh-so-expensive.)

I was kind of surprised, though. My software that I had written, using MS Basic, and floating-point math, was actually SLOWER on the 386DX-40 (which LACKED an FPU), than it was with the 8086+8087 combo. That taught me early-on that FPU was important.

Later on, I think that I had a 486, probably Intel, which HAD an integrated FPU.

Then I had an AMD (by then, the lawsuits were under way, and AMD had their own clean-room 486 implementation) 5x86DX-133. Over 100Mhz! That was fun. I don't remember exactly, but I think that's when VLB gave way to PCI. (Edit: Micronics motherboard, maybe?)

My first real try at overclocking. I tried to run the 5x86-133 @ 160. "According to the internet, it was 'easy'". Well, I caused the boot sector of my HDD to get zeroed out instead. Luckily, back then I was a bit more technical and low-level, and I used Norton Disk Editor to manually re-create my MBR. (Or maybe it was the PBR.) Ahh, the joys of how simple FAT32 was, where manual repair was even an option.

Then, I had a Pentium 133MMX (?) (overdrive? It had a fan/heatsink bonded to the CPGA chip.). Maybe 166Mhz. I remember MMX supposedly speeding up games. I guess it only worked with some "Red Moon Rising" game at first, that was sponsored by Intel. That was the early days of PC gaming finally starting to take shape, but I wasn't into it fully. I used my Pentium MMX CPU for RC-54, I think that it was. That was fun, early days in DC.

I overclocked that chip, successfully this time, from either 133->166, or 166->200, I forget now which.

After that, my father bought me an Abit BX6-2 board, and I procured a Pentium II (MMX) 300Mhz. But, thanks to "overclockers.com" (I hadn't yet discovered AT), I found out about the "SL2W8" S-Spec code, and how that batch was supposedly an early version of the PII-450, and that they would all, certainly mostly guaranteed, OC to 450.

Thanks to the jumper-less OC'ing capability of the BX6-2 board (Slot1!), I was successful in getting that chip to 450! I had some sort of massive Slot-1 heatsink (Alpha?), with 2x small Delta screamer fans. It was fairly loud, but oh so smooth and fast. That was the early days of AGP, I think 2X. Along with PCI, and yes, still some ISA16 slots. (Had an SB Awe64 card, Promise PCI ATA-66 disk controller card - which had a data-corruption bug under heavy usage!). Had (I think?) 3x RAM slots, don't remember if that was DDR1, or PC100/133 SDR.

Actually, I think that the Intel 845 or 865 was the first DDR RAM chipset, so it must have been PC100/133 SDR.

There was an AGP divider setting in the BIOS, but I got an ATI RagePro 2X AGP card, and that card in particular would actually handle and run @ 100Mhz AGP bus speeds, so IIRC, I had everything tweaked out, so that my SDR RAM was running @ 100Mhz, my bus speed was 100Mhz, and my AGP 2x port was running @ 100Mhz. (My video card's RAM might have also been running @ 100Mhz.)

Those were the days... :)

Edit: I was hoping to find a picture of that early 5x86-133 PCI Micronics mobo, but I found this link:
Another trip down memory lane, I guess. (Some good old Web 1.0 pages, gah!)
 
Last edited:

pmv

Diamond Member
May 30, 2008
6,650
2,048
136
I remember when a website - SharkeyExtreme maybe? - used to carry a table, updated daily, showing the changing (falling) prices of different CPUs. And remember checking that table regularly to judge if I could afford an upgrade yet.
(I've had my current CPU for 7 years now and cant' be bothered even thinking about upgrades).
 
  • Like
Reactions: Tlh97

chrisjames61

Senior member
Dec 31, 2013
655
373
136
you are not aware you can use a 55" tv with blutooth mouse / keyboard with your phone? i have a galaxy s10 hooked up to one for fun its even got wired Ethernet. Honestly i just hooked it up for fun to try out but it works just fine. USb C hub ftw
Who wants to do that? A real computer with a monitor sitting at a desk is a much better tool for any real computing task.
 

sdifox

No Lifer
Sep 30, 2005
81,296
7,599
126
of course remember how much you could do on your computer back then? how loading a photo was like a slow process you got to see the top of the head, then the eyes then the shoulders then the..... now days computers are less useful since you can do almost everything on your phone / tablet, sorta like a digital camera, not so useful anymore unless you pay 600+$ and like to carry around a bulky item (not exactly pocketable)

I feel like cpu's are still overpriced. Opteron 165/ barton mobile chip in a desktop where great deals.
IMG_20201012_105735.jpg
 
  • Like
Reactions: CP5670

CP5670

Diamond Member
Jun 24, 2004
4,489
58
91
I have one of those too. I recall it ran at 3ghz on moderate air cooling back in the day, on a DFI Lanparty board.

you are not aware you can use a 55" tv with blutooth mouse / keyboard with your phone? i have a galaxy s10 hooked up to one for fun its even got wired Ethernet. Honestly i just hooked it up for fun to try out but it works just fine. USb C hub ftw
I think this will become the norm in the future. A phone is easily powerful enough for the apps most people use these days. I already use my desktop PC with a TV in a home theater arrangement instead of a traditional desk.
 

dullard

Elite Member
May 21, 2001
22,481
810
126
Old Computer Shopper Magazines are a blast to look through. Here are CPU prices from July 2000:

People that think CPU prices are high now, just don't know what CPU prices used to be like. CPU prices now are so low that the CPU price doesn't even come into consideration a lot of the time.

1602520452731.png
 

mindless1

Diamond Member
Aug 11, 2001
5,396
452
126
I think this will become the norm in the future. A phone is easily powerful enough for the apps most people use these days. I already use my desktop PC with a TV in a home theater arrangement instead of a traditional desk.
Maybe for data you need to carry with you, but I've had a smart TV box and now smart TV that can use a mouse and kbd directly, no need to get a phone involved. I don't get much into using clouds but it wouldn't be hard to set up a cloud sync between the two devices if your TV does android built in or with a dongle, for data you do need to take with you.

I too, have a PC in a HTPC type arrangement with a 4K TV but am not as productive on it. The question of using a 55" (really any larger than roughly 42", IMO) TV is more about other ergonomics. It's too big to sit directly behind at a desk, and productivity (at least for me) tends to tank if I'm sitting on a couch with a keyboard, at a normal distance at which you'd use a 55" TV, which is a bit too far away to see minute details that I often work with.

I suppose you could build a custom cockpit sort of arrangement that makes everything be where it should for productivity but then it is not as good a setup for normal HTPC use.
 
Last edited:

Spartak

Senior member
Jul 4, 2015
330
238
116
The premise of this thread leaves me massively underwhelmed.

Pretty sure 1 euro today feels like 1 euro 20 years ago, and yes you can buy more with your income today, that's called progress (and yes I'm familiar with the concept of inflation but it doesnt work like that 1:1).

Anyhow I bought my first PC in 1996 for ~1400 euro (3000 guilder) incl monitor and keyboard/mouse so I guess the PC cost me about 1000 euro. Guess what most people's budget for their desktop rig would be today?

Fact of the matter is absolute (and subjective/instinctive) prices have remained pretty constant, not taking inflation into account.
 

SPBHM

Diamond Member
Sep 12, 2012
4,964
335
126
checking prices in early 2003 https://www.anandtech.com/show/1088/2 the XP 1700+ cost $50 and would perform 100% the same as the $300+ 2800+ with some settings being adjusted (overclock), what a beast that was, nowadays a $50 CPU is completely hopeless against a $300 CPU even with ln2 OC,
 

chrisjames61

Senior member
Dec 31, 2013
655
373
136
M

I too, have a PC in a HTPC type arrangement with a 4K TV but am not as productive on it. The question of using a 55" (really any larger than roughly 42", IMO) TV is more about other ergonomics. It's too big to sit directly behind at a desk, and productivity (at least for me) tends to tank if I'm sitting on a couch with a keyboard, at a normal distance at which you'd use a 55" TV, which is a bit too far away to see minute details that I often work with.

I suppose you could build a custom cockpit sort of arrangement that makes everything be where it should for productivity but then it is not as good a setup for normal HTPC use.
This.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY