Buy or Build?

  • MartySH
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I am looking at new computers for copying and editing video and DVDs. I think emachines has one with 512K, 160gb and athlon 3200 for about $599....along with many slots and USB 2 etc. 16XDVD dual layer combo drive.

Would I be able to build one myself with those capabilities for the same or less?

What would it take to build one?

Thanks,
Marty
  • think.correctly
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Post 3+ Months Ago

u in america or canada?
  • GSlinger
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Post 3+ Months Ago

dude i would say buy. up untill the last batch of new PC's i would have said build, but its cheaper to buy. u get a warrenty if u buy too. the prices just keep dropping and dropping. u might be able to find it cheaper though.

http://www.bensbargains.net/
this is a good place to find deals. maybe they will have your dream PC for cheap!!
  • ilyawizard
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I'd build it myself. The best way to find out is to find out...the prices of parts u gonna have in ur emachine. So go research a little. I'd suggest ebay but if u don't auctions http://www.newegg.com is good onine shop (mostly with cheap or even free shipping, very fast).
  • ATNO/TW
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If you buy retail, you are limited to what is offered in the system package along with the OS that is offered. If you build, you can probably come out the same or similar price but get what you want.
  • TomK
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Building a lot of the time is cheaper. As well, you get quality parts instead of the generic parts manufacturer's are known to stuff into cheap computers.
  • GSlinger
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Post 3+ Months Ago

building nowadays most likely is not cheaper. unless u want to use pirated software. i know we shouldnt talk about that here, but Windows is like $200+. u can use Linux or unix though. that would make it cheaper.

just my opinion.
if u want to build, i dont mean to discourage you man. this is a good site:
http://www.tigerdirect.com/
cheap good stuff.
i priced a build and it was cheaper to buy for me. maybe u can build for cheaper. its all about what u want the PC for.
  • Jazzy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

The fact is that when you build you know what is inside your PC and as said before your are not realted to some parts that the manufacturer of that pc uses and so when you have to change a piece you can just take whatever pleases you and not what works with the PC you bought.

GSlinger wrote:
building nowadays most likely is not cheaper. unless u want to use pirated software.


omg LOL

Sorry but this is prejudice big market talking. i really don't know where you got this quote from must be some spot by the RIAA or something.

Besides what is the difference then from a manufacturer who build a PC and me that i build it meself ? can't i just have fun while building it, because i don't trust when other people put stuff in the PC you buy ?

And another point about the fact of it is cheap or not, when you buy a pre-build PC you HAVE to buy the OS ( M$, how weird ) while when you build it yourself you can just put unix on it on another OS
  • GSlinger
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Quote:
And another point about the fact of it is cheap or not, when you buy a pre-build PC you HAVE to buy the OS ( M$, how weird ) while when you build it yourself you can just put unix on it on another OS

umm no u dont. at dell u can build your own.... with or without a OS. and u can select the parts you want. or none. i can scrap around and build a PC, but when u buy them u get a warrenty. and if i can buy exactly what i want, get a warrenty, and its the same cost or less, i will buy. MY OPINION!!!!

and i said that this was my opinion. u just stated yours. there was no reason to flame me big guy. dont appreciate that. notice i didnt use the term "LOL" when referring to anyone else's opinion.
  • dqualter
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Post 3+ Months Ago

BUILD ! BUILD ! BUILD ! its worth the hassel and you get a good deal . most of the time the component you buy are going to be new than the ones on a brought computer :D good luck !
  • TomK
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Post 3+ Months Ago

It can't be cheaper to buy a computer assembled instead of building your own. It takes labour to build a computer and labour costs money. Unless there's some spectacular deal on, it's cheaper to build. Also, Dell's stuff crappy motherboards into a lot of their machines and also have a lot of Dell-branded chips which I'm not a big fan of. I've also heard of people having trouble upgrading Dell's because they're designed to only be used wit h the components put in them when they're first built.
  • MartySH
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Post 3+ Months Ago

So can anyone tell me how to build a computer similar to one that I can buy from emachines for less than $549?

Here is what it has (emachines 3256)

amd athlon 3200+ (which I am told is fast)
512K
160gb drive
8X DVD/CD burner
all kinds of ports for USB2 etc.
XP
no monitor

Everytime I try to build one from scratch and price it out, it comes out much more expenseive like between $800 and $1200 depending on which components I select.

Thanks
MartySH
  • TomK
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Post 3+ Months Ago

MartySH wrote:
So can anyone tell me how to build a computer similar to one that I can buy from emachines for less than $549?

Here is what it has (emachines 3256)

amd athlon 3200+ (which I am told is fast)
512K
160gb drive
8X DVD/CD burner
all kinds of ports for USB2 etc.
XP
no monitor

Everytime I try to build one from scratch and price it out, it comes out much more expenseive like between $800 and $1200 depending on which components I select.

Thanks
MartySH


Emachines are bargain basement. Notice they don't list a lot of components like RAM, motherboard, etc. That's because they use very cheap components. I'll try to cook something up for you.
  • think.correctly
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Post 3+ Months Ago

canadian prices

B452-1018 :: Just 4 PC - Beige Mid-Tower Case with AMD Approved and Intel Pentium 4 Ready 425 Watt Power Supply |47.99|

TC1-6000 :: 1.44 MB Floppy Drive |29.99|

MBM-K8V64-3200 C :: Asus K8V Socket 754 ATX Motherboard and AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Processor |411.99|

TSD-160H2 :: Hitachi / 160GB / 7200 / 8MB / SATA-150 / Hard Drive |139.99|

K24-4906 :: Kingston 512MB Non-ECC, CL3 PC3200 DDR 400MHz Memory |119.97|

P450-7253 :: XFX GeForce MX 4000 / 128MB DDR / AGP 8X / VGA / TV Out / Video Card |80.99|

T925-2029 :: Thermaltake TR2 M6 / Socket 754/940 / AMD Athlon 64/Opteron / Ball Bearing / Copper Core / CPU Cooling Fan |18.99|

M17-5631 :: Microsoft Windows XP Home Service Pack 2 |252.99|


total: 1097.90






american

Rosewill Black ATX Mid Tower Case with 400W Power Supply, Model "R114A Black" -RETAIL |49.99|

Western Digital 250GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive, Model WD2500JD, OEM Drive Only |139.99|

V-DATA 184 Pin 512M DDR PC-2700 - OEM|74.00|

ASUS "K8N" NVIDIA nForce3 Chipset Motherboard For AMD Socket 754 CPU -RETAIL |89.99|


AMD Athlon 64 3200+, 512k L2 Cache, The Only 64-bit Windows Compatible Processor - Retail |204.00|

AOpen nVIDIA GeForce FX5700LE Video Card, 256MB DDR, DVI/TV-Out, 8X AGP, Model "FX5700LE-DV256" -RETAIL |95.99|


be happy, better than my computer will probably ever be, CANT WAIT TO MOVE TO AMERICA
  • TomK
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Processor:
AMD Athlon 64 2800+, 512KB L2 Cache, 64-bit Processor - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 452&depa=1
$141.00

Motherboard:
GIGABYTE "GA-K8VT800M" K8T800 Chipset Motherboard for AMD Socket 754 CPU -RETAIL
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 203&depa=1
$67.00

Memory:
Corsair Value Select 184 Pin 512MB DDR PC-3200 - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 026&depa=1
$75.27

Hard Drive:
Western Digital 160GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive, Model WD1600JD, OEM Drive Only
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 152&depa=1
$97

DVD/CD Burner:
Lite-On 8X Double Layer DVD+/-RW Drive, Model SOHW-832S WHT, Retail
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 953&depa=1
$63.00

Case and Power Supply:
ANTEC Beige Performance II Mini Tower Case with 300W Power Supply, Model "SX630II" -RETAIL
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDe ... 118&depa=1
$60.00

Operating System:
Microsoft Windows XP HOME Edition With Service Pack 2 -OEM
http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproductde ... 151&DEPA=6
$94.00

TOTAL: $597.27

This system will DESTROY the Emachine PC you're looking at in ANYTHING. I couldn't include a video card, so if you're looking to play any newer games you'll have to buy a video card (which you'd have to do with the Emachine also).

If you have any questions, feel free to ask.
  • ScienceOfSpock
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I have to throw my 2 cents into this. I have been building my own computers since 95. Last X-Mas, i decided to go the easy route, and I bought an eMachine for my Nephews, for $399. It had an Athlon XP 2200+, 512MB ram, 80GB HD, more than I thought they would need.

Now the computer sits in the garage, and I have since built them a new P4 2.6Ghz machine. The problem was that although the processor was salvagable, as was the HD, the rest was proprietary. The video and memory was built into the motherboard. This means that neither was upgradable.
The machine was obsolete before I bought it for them, partially due to my haste and not realizing the machine didn't have a 3D vid card in the first place, and they wanted to play games. I figured, "Ok, I'll just get them a GeForce FX and all will be well", only to open the machine and see that it didn't even have an AGP slot.

In short, my advice is this: Build it yourself. If you can't, find a friend who can and buy him a 12 pack of beer. You may pay more up front, but in the end, it will cost you less because you can upgrade when YOU see fit, not when a manufacturer has designed their system to be obsolete (and they DO do this)
  • Jazzy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
umm no u dont. at dell u can build your own.... with or without a OS. and u can select the parts you want. or none. i can scrap around and build a PC, but when u buy them u get a warrenty. and if i can buy exactly what i want, get a warrenty, and its the same cost or less, i will buy. MY OPINION!!!!

and i said that this was my opinion. u just stated yours. there was no reason to flame me big guy. dont appreciate that. notice i didnt use the term "LOL" when referring to anyone else's opinion.


Well about the first point it has already been answered, it's cheaper because of cheap components, and you mostly have to use theyr parts to upgrade, you can't go and buy what you want

About the flaming, i din't mean to, but you can understand i hope, that when saying that building a pc is for using pirated sofware your treating me and all the ppl who have fun in building a pc, likje hackers or something who use all pirated software.

I find that a misplaced prejudice and i don't like that, that's all
  • TomK
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Post 3+ Months Ago

ScienceOfSpock wrote:
I have to throw my 2 cents into this. I have been building my own computers since 95. Last X-Mas, i decided to go the easy route, and I bought an eMachine for my Nephews, for $399. It had an Athlon XP 2200+, 512MB ram, 80GB HD, more than I thought they would need.

Now the computer sits in the garage, and I have since built them a new P4 2.6Ghz machine. The problem was that although the processor was salvagable, as was the HD, the rest was proprietary. The video and memory was built into the motherboard. This means that neither was upgradable.
The machine was obsolete before I bought it for them, partially due to my haste and not realizing the machine didn't have a 3D vid card in the first place, and they wanted to play games. I figured, "Ok, I'll just get them a GeForce FX and all will be well", only to open the machine and see that it didn't even have an AGP slot.

In short, my advice is this: Build it yourself. If you can't, find a friend who can and buy him a 12 pack of beer. You may pay more up front, but in the end, it will cost you less because you can upgrade when YOU see fit, not when a manufacturer has designed their system to be obsolete (and they DO do this)


This is why I hate prebuilt systems. They are a system designed to run well together now, not later.
  • MartySH
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Post 3+ Months Ago

OK, you guys are awsome. TomK, so if I go and buy all the parts you listed, (which by the way, I appreciate your effort in finding and writing all the info for me,) how hard is it to put it all together?

Would I still need a network card, fax modem, USB2 ports, firewire port, etc, that I sort of take for granted in a prebuilt system?




Do I need special tools or is as easy as just screwing in all the parts one by one?

Is there some type of instruction manual? I am pretty handy but not sure if I am getting in over my head.

Everyone has been very helpful so far.

MartySH
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MartySH wrote:
OK, you guys are awsome. TomK, so if I go and buy all the parts you listed, (which by the way, I appreciate your effort in finding and writing all the info for me,) how hard is it to put it all together?


It's quite simple to put together. It mostly involves inserting Part A into Part B. If you can do that, you're well on your way. Just read as much as you can before you build and you will be fine.

MartySH wrote:
Would I still need a network card, fax modem, USB2 ports, firewire port, etc, that I sort of take for granted in a prebuilt system?


The motherboard includes a built in Ethernet card (network card) and 8 USB 2.0 Ports. It doesn't come with a modem, so if you are going to be connecting via a dial-up service (which I don't recommend) you will need to purchase one. Also, it doesn't come with FireWire, but if you need this (it's mainly used to video editing, but USB 2.0 is also an option if your camera supports it) I can find you a different motherboard.

MartySH wrote:
Do I need special tools or is as easy as just screwing in all the parts one by one?


You might need a screwdriver but that's pretty much it. I would highly recommend you getting an anti-static wrist strap so you don't ruin any of your components (small chance, but it happens. Better safe then sorry). Most parts are simply slid into place except for the case, in which there's usually thumb screws.

MartySH wrote:
Is there some type of instruction manual? I am pretty handy but not sure if I am getting in over my head.


The instructions to setup your system will be in your motherboard. It should list exactly how to install every component. If you have any questions about building it, feel free to ask.

Again, if you have any other questions I would be glad to answer them.
  • SSH-Raj
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Post 3+ Months Ago

you can build it your self but if you want to spend less money and still get a good system i suggest looking on ebay.
I've saw one a really good one a few days ago. it was a buy it now for $400 + $30 ship and it had an athlon 64 2800+, 512 ram, GB hd, dvd burner, and a cheap 3d card. the system was completely custom built.
  • ScienceOfSpock
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TomK wrote:
This is why I hate prebuilt systems. They are a system designed to run well together now, not later.


I think a more appropriate term is "Planned obsolescence" They build these systems so they won't be usable in a year or so, and you have to buy a new one. Build your own, it's not much harder than putting together a snap-tite model kit, except there are some screws.... and stuff :)
  • TomK
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Post 3+ Months Ago

ScienceOfSpock wrote:
[ Build your own, it's not much harder than putting together a snap-tite model kit, except there are some screws.... and stuff :)


Even easier than that. You snap part A into Part B and then put the panels on your case using thumbscrews. :P
  • MartySH
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Post 3+ Months Ago

So, a 64 bit athlon 2800 is faster than an athlon 3200+? Are there programs out there that take advantage of the 64 bit processing?

I may not know what I am talking about but this is what I think I have heard.
  • grimshit
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Post 3+ Months Ago

the athlon 64 2800+ is a socket 754 which is restricted to single channel ram, the 754 socket is'nt going to be used for many more athlon 64's. If you dont want to upgrade later then this will be fine but if you do then i sugest getting the new athlon 63 3000+ winchester core, this is a socket 939 chip and can make use of dual channel ram....also new athlon 64-FX's will come in this socket so you can buy on the cheap now and upgrade when you have enough money. As for the athlon and the athlon 64's the althon 64's will generally be faster and will excell when the new 64 bit Xp comes out.
  • TomK
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MartySH wrote:
So, a 64 bit athlon 2800 is faster than an athlon 3200+? Are there programs out there that take advantage of the 64 bit processing?


Yes, an AMD 64-Bit 2800+ is faster than an AMD Athlon 3200+. Programs that use 64 bit processing are still being developed but once they come out you should get a big boost compared to 32 bit processors. The AMD 64-Bit 2800+ beats the AMD Athlon 3200+ in 32 bit applications as well. It's the better processor in every category.

It's true that Socket 939 is the superior socket and it is more futureproof. I would recommend going Socket 939 if you could afford it, but I couldn't fit it into your budget. Also, Socket 754 will be continued for quite a while so you should be fine.
  • grimshit
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hmmm, you should be able too, the new winchester socket 939's are cheap , the 3000+ is £110 i think on http://www.overclockers.co.uk and a abit av8 3rd eye is just over £80. Get some good ram, a geforce fx 5200 and a case/powersupply should be about £400, but this will probably be over your $600 dollar budget but will be far supirior.
  • MartySH
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Just curious, TomK, why you specified a micro ATX motherboard? Seem to be a lot of them to chose from. Any others you might recommend?

I guess I am getting close to making up my mind to build instead of buy since most say that I can get a better computer for not much more.
  • TomK
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MartySH wrote:
Just curious, TomK, why you specified a micro ATX motherboard? Seem to be a lot of them to chose from. Any others you might recommend?


Micro ATX is basically a standard. It is used mostly in LAN party cases. I didn't realize this when selecting that motherboard for you, but it will still work. You might be better off to choose one of the motherboards I suggest below.

There's a lot of good motherboards out there, and just as many bad ones. A good rule of thumb is you get what you pay for. Here's some other good motherboards:

Abit:
http://www.newegg.com/app/viewProductDe ... 178&depa=1
Chaintech: http://www.newegg.com/app/viewProductDe ... 043&depa=0
Gigabyte: http://www.newegg.com/app/viewProductDe ... 259&depa=0

I'm a big fan of Abit, but I've also heard good things about Chaintech. All of those boards should serve you well.
  • Stalin_q8
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I think build, i like building, its better and cheaper

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