Opinions on possible purchase


New Member
Remember, I'm replacing an Athlon 64 system and on a budget....LOW!!!

Thinking I should see a major improvement over that....right?



New Member
That is a good deal for $304. X2's are pretty old these days.

I just picked up a new Rip Machine The New 6 Core AMD from Dell. 4 gigs of ddr 3 Fast GPU and 750gig drive all for

Upgraded the ram to 8 gigs from newegg for another $100.

It Smokes.


New Member
If you are on a very tight budget, then this should do it at least. It is an entry-level processor compared to most of today's newest systems, but its still going to give you a noticeable bump in performance over your previous single-core processor. The combo uses an ASUS board, at least, which is good as I prefer their brand above any others out there. Good DDR2 memory, though only 2 GB, it can be upgraded later for only $60 or so to 4 GB of memory.

One thing to consider, if you are reusing parts from your existing previous computer, is your power supply. What is the brand, and what is the power rating on it? Power supplies tend to lose their capacity to output at their max rated power over time, and if it was just enough to run your previous computer, it might not be enough now after 4 years to run your new computer build thus requiring a new PSU as well.

There are a lot of ways to go out there to save some money in situations like this. If you are looking for kits or just hardware parts instead of a complete computer, I would suggest looking into AMD systems (which you currently seem to be pursuing) or look into the slightly older generation of Intel processors, such as the Core2Quads as some places may be selling these systems pretty cheap to get them out of inventory and update their inventory to the latest i3/i5/i7 systems.

When it comes to the entry-level and budget build systems, no matter what you might be told, AMD is the way to go. Getting an entry-level Intel system means several hundreds of dollars more than almost the same performance on an AMD system. Just as an example, I recently built an i5-650 based Intel dual-core computer, and while it was pretty sweet performance for the money, I could have purchased an AMD Phenom II X4 955 quad-core system for less!


New Member
Thanks guys for all your suggestions. All systems mentioned are excellent quality and some at a very decent price. I'm definitely looking AMD specifically because of it's price/performance ratio. I can get a quality system for a decent price. I might have to consider buying a pre-built system though I always prefer to build my own. Not the most technically savvy but I've been able to get them to work.

If you are on a very tight budget, then this should do it at least.

That's what I thought. I understand it's no Phenom II x4, but for the money and what's included it could hold me up. The performance boost should be dramatic in my opinion. The power supply I'm using is a Rosewill 700watt aprox (i don't have it in front of me right now) implemented about a year ago or so.

Dice :
Here is the Deal, I'm not sure if its expired or not. No Monitor.


That's a killer deal. Right now getting what I linked to will be around $530 inlcuding shipping, I might be able to get a system like that in a couple of weeks. Money is still on the street and my backup system is just dreadfully slow. Running CS4 on a Barton Core with 3gigs and XP Pro...can you say slow? I've just never been a fan of prebuilt systems with all the bloatware and proprietary boards and all.

And shipping usually kills me. I have to get it here to Puerto Rico and shops love to overcharge or give only high priced options.

Thanks for all your comments. I will do more research and pull the trigger on my selection only if I can't stand working on my backup system anymore...

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New Member
After More Research....

So I did a bit more research on newegg and found these items to combine...what are your thoughts:

1. Motherboard


2. RAM


3. OS


Those three will be consistent...what changes follows.

I can add this Phenom CPU for a total of $531 including UPS ground to Puerto Rico

or I can add this Athlon II X3 and this HDD for $564 including UPS ground to Puerto Rico.

The Phenom gives me the most power and is closest to my original pricing but the second allows me to include an HDD. Any comments on the Mobo and Memory would be greatly appreciated.



New Member
The ASUS Evo motherboards have been quite well received, and personally I have had nothing but excellent luck with ASUS brand motherboards. That Evo board is a great selection for the mid price range and even includes integrated graphics which can get you by without a dedicated graphics card, though I wouldn't suggest it for very long.

The G.Skills memory also should work fine. I have not used the Ripsaw models myself yet, but I have used plenty of G.Skills memory in the past (DDR2 and DDR3) that I can't complain one bit about. One thing to note here, since you selected a dual-channel kit that is rated as DDR3 1600 it will default at first to the standard speed of DDR3 1333. To get it to the rated speed you will have to manually configure it in BIOS. Not too tricky, but if you don't want to hassle with it you can instead get a pair of DDR3 1333 memory sticks. I just would suggest always making sure the memory voltage is not above 1.65 volts.

As for the processor, both that you have here are quite capable. The Phenom is going to give a noticeable difference mainly because of a bigger cache system. Having that extra core might not be noticed until you're working with some really big projects in CS4.

If you are in need of a new hard drive for your computer, then obviously you know which path you must take, but if you have an existing SATA 7,200rpm hard drive with enough capacity for your needs, then I wouldn't really recommend that you have to upgrade your hard drive as well. That WD hard drive is all big news simply because it has the new SATA 6Gb/s interface. 1) NO mechanical drive comes close to utilizing the full bandwidth of the standard SATA 3Gb/s interface. 2) The ASUS Evo board does not have the SATA 6Gb/s controller so there's no point in a hard drive that supports that interface when it still doesn't even use up the full SATA 3Bb/s speed again.

Simply stated, unless you are doing some crazy RAID arrays (with SSDs instead of mechanical drives) you will not need the SATA 6Gb/s interface throughput as this hard drive will really not give you much more speed than any other mechanical 7,200rpm SATA hard drive out there.


New Member
Thanks for the thorough reply.

includes integrated graphics which can get you by without a dedicated graphics card, though I wouldn't suggest it for very long.

I'm not planning any gaming on this rig...maybe some movies but no HD yet. While a higher end VC would definitely improve things, for my purposes is it really necessary?

One thing to note here, since you selected a dual-channel kit that is rated as DDR3 1600 it will default at first to the standard speed of DDR3 1333.

I had read about this and don't have an issue with making the needed bios changes. However, what kind of improvement am I going to see between the two units properly set. Is it something noticeable or negligible?

Point taken on the HD comment. I don't have a SATA drive. What I'm planning on using is a 160Gig (aprox) PATA drive for the OS with a 500Gig hitachi deskstar for the production files. I will more than likely upgrade slowly my HDD's and create a server using the backup system I've been forced to use for production (Barton Core on an Abit board).

Thanks again for your reply...very informative.



New Member
While this kind of design work is placed heavily as a CPU intensive workload, having a more powerful GPU can affect performance in modern software. In CS4 they began using GPU acceleration technology that can use the newer nVidia graphics GPUs to greatly speed up rendering and processing tasks on larger projects. Still, you don't need a big expensive graphics card to get good advantages in performance and the real benefit is added resolutions and capability of running multiple monitors if that is desired. The ASUS motherboard you have selected, though, does actually support dual monitor setups unlike most integrated video platforms, and up to some high resolutions as well.

The performance advantage between DDR3 1333 and DDR3 1600 depends on a few things more than just that speed. There is also the timings. If the timings are identical (such as CAS 9) then the speed difference will not be noticeable at all, barely even by benchmarking tools. Lower latency memory can give increased performance, but again there is negligible difference. The only way you will really see a difference in the speed is if you are comparing something like DDR3 1333 and DDR3 2000 at the same timings.

With today's hard drive technology, I try to steer people away from IDE drives anymore as much as possible because it is much slower compared to the same drive on a SATA interface. As an example, just this week I was working with a customer's Dell Dimension 8400 tower which previously had a Seagate 80GB IDE 7,200rpm hard drive. HD Tune benchmarked the drive at an average of 27 Mb/s throughput on read and writes. I then switched out the hard drive with a Seagate 80GB SATA 7,200rpm hard drive and benchmarked an average of 88 Mb/s throughput on read and writes. This is quite a great improvement for such a seemingly little thing.

Remember, the slowest transfer rates in your computer are from and to the hard drive. The faster you can make this connection, the greater your system performance will be all around from opening and saving files to loading the operating systems and applications to working with open files in CS4.


New Member
This is the one..pulling the trigger over the weekend

There are sure a lot of smart folks on Signs101......Thanks.......

I second that motion....http://www.signs101.com/forums/images/smilies/urock.gif

So I finally decided on what to get and, while over my budget, it should hold me for quite some time given the expandability of the board. I understood every point you made, I had a general idea but you sure made it completely clear.

So what do you think. Same setup as before but changing memory and adding HDD's.






Files HDD
(Might convert the barton core/abit mobo into a fileserver/mediaserver in the long run and put this in there, what do you think?)

That's it. Total of $651 from new egg and this is including a HUGE!!! $47 shipping charge to Puerto Rico.

Thanks for all the info, was a lot of help in improving the rig for not much more based on the amount of items I'm getting.

Now on to ordering...building...and getting some wrap clients to gets some quick ROI.



New Member
Looks like a good configuration for you, I'm glad that I could be some help. I think the memory you chose will be a better bargain since it's still the standard DDR3 1333 and same timings. Again the only addition that I might suggest with it would be a Cooler Master Hyper or Cooler Master Vortex CPU cooler. They are relatively cheap additions but can make a big difference in temperatures. With an aftermarket cooler you can even look into overclocking if that is your wish.