Recommendations on a New A64 Non-Gaming System...

heffe734

Platinum Member
Mar 8, 2001
2,304
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Hey Fellow Anandtechers,

It's been about 4 yrs since i last upgraded and the last system i built for somebody was two years ago (T-bred 2400/epox 8rda+). My epox 8k7a is officially dead (during power outtage caused by storm that passed through socal) so i'm looking to build a new rig. I've been outta the loop for a while so i'm gonna need your input! Thanks in advance anandtechers...

So what will i use it for? Well, I will not be doing any gaming and probably will not be overclocking...but then again, maybe i will play around with a little to relive the glory days of when i used to overclock (remember the "AYHJA" steppings for those t-birds anyone? haha). I might get into some basic video editting and will a little photoshop on the side...but nothing serious.




Here's what i have in mind so far:

CPU

AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Processor Socket 939 0.13 micron - Newcastle (1st choice)
or
AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Processor Socket 939 90nm 0.9 micron - Winchester


MOTHERBOARD

MSI K8N Neo2 Platinum nForce3 Ultra Athlon 64(FX) Skt939 DDR ATX Motherboard (1st choice)
OR
Asus A8V-Deluxe Via K8T800Pro


MEMORY

Corsair VS1GBKIT400 1GB Kit DDR400 PC3200 CAS2.5 Value Select Memory (1st choice)
OR
Mushkin Dual Pack 184-Pin 1GB(512MBx2) DDR PC-3200
OR
Kingston 1GB PC3200 400MHz 2-64x64 HyperX DDR Memory 184Pin


HARD DRIVE

Ultra16 250GB, 7200RPM, Internal SATA/150 HArd Drive (1st choice)
OR
IBM Hitachi Deskstar 7K250 250GB Serial ATA 7200RPM Hard Drive w/8MB Buffer


VIDEO CARD

ATI 9600 XT (1st choice - sorta on budget...)
OR
ATI 9800 Pro


Leftovers i will be reusing:

Case - i have an old Antec Performance II Series SX835II Workstation with Enermax 430W
dvd/cd/ - Pioneer 104, LiteOn 52x Burner, LiteOn 16x DVD
Additional HDs - Maxtor 160gb on external firewire, 80 Gig x 1 (ata133, 8mb)


So that's pretty much it...and once again...thanks again in advance for your input everyone! Looking forward to your responses...

EDIT: Put wrong mobo...sorry...
 

imported_brad

Member
Jan 6, 2005
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i like all your first choices except the graphics card. if you've got the cash to drop in a 9800AIW, you might as well go with an AGP nvidia gf 6600...roughly the same price, maybe less.

it seems silly to have such a kickin rig, and waste it all by dropping in a 3 generation old GPU.
 

ts3433

Platinum Member
Jun 29, 2004
2,731
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If you're not gaming, you don't need anything more than a Radeon 9200.

I'd take the gig of Corsair over Kingston.

You can't use the A8N-SLI with an AGP graphics card (it's PCIe only), and you can probably save some money going with the Epox EP-9NDA3+, EP-9NDA3J, Soltek SL-K8TPro-939, or Asus A8V Deluxe instead.

As for a CPU, I doubt you'll need more than the 3200+. The Winchester core will OC better than a Newcastle if/when you do a little for kicks.
 

ayman

Senior member
Dec 22, 2004
327
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The 3500 processor is an excellent choice. you said your on a budget, if you wanna do a little more research i say you can look at the lower end models like the 3000 or preferably the 3200+ 939 skt.

For motherboards the Asus A8N you pointed out isnt the same as the MSI neo 2 in that one uses PCIe(asus) and the other uses AGP(msi) to accelerate its GPU.

Do you know what SLI is? By the way ATI isn't SLI compatable.

If you end up taking the path of purchasing a 3200+amd then you can think about upgrading to a better video card with the money you saved.

As far as ram, you can read up here on why you can get away with using cheap ram to power your rig just as good as you would with any other ram for half the price! That right there will save you money to put towards a better graphics card. At that point you can look at nvidia's 6600GT's or if your willing to put out some more money the 6800GT which is kinda hard to find right now.

Everything else is good.

Just a side note... i prefer the 9600xt over the 9800pro. People have told me it even performs slightly better. I upgraded my 9600xt to a BFG 6800GT and i'm very happy.


EDIT: sorry if your not using this for gaming, you dont need these parts i recommended. ts3433 has the right idea for you :)
 

heffe734

Platinum Member
Mar 8, 2001
2,304
0
0
thanks for the input...i'm split the most on the motherboard i guess...i hear mixed things about both. Kinda tough choosing RAM too
 

Cerb

Elite Member
Aug 26, 2000
17,484
33
86
A 3000+ or 3200+ 90nm will do better for OCing. If you're sure you won't be OCing, then just get the faster one (3500+). The differences are pretty minimal in normal use, as well.

I would skip MSI, but that's just me. You might want to see if either chipset has PCI/AGP locks, for OCing (I haven't kept up with the recent ones). Performance won't be different enough to matter between any mobos.

Corsair Value will be good, and should even be fine for OCing.

Have you thought about a Seagate HD?
Between your choices, though, Hitachi all the way.

9600XT (<$130) or 6600GT AGP ($210-$230). Skip the 9800 Pro entirely. However, you're not gaming, so why not a FX 5200 or Radeon 9200(SE)? Get one from a good brand with a nice passive heatsink and never worry about it.

The case and PSU should serve you until you need to switch to BTX.