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Thread: M/board, CPU, graphics advice needed

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    Question M/board, CPU, graphics advice needed

    I have a dead pc (CPU and/or mainboard) and I am thinking of resurrecting it. My aim is to run Linux on it but I want to keep options to run Vista, with full Aero, if circumstances change). I don't play games.

    Clearly I need a new m/board and CPU. Also a couple of gig of RAM (might as well start with a reasonable amount). I have a reasonable sized h/d, DVD & CD,, floppy, etc. but I might be forced to buy a SATA h/d as m/boards only seem to have one IDE connector these days and I might want to have CD & DVD. I'm not sure about the PSU until I open it up again.

    I assume I will also have to get a graphics card as integrated graphics seem to be out of fashion. I think I only need a budget priced, fairly low spec one as I don’t do games?

    This is clearly not going to be a *very* low cost project but I think I can get a good spec box for £300-£350, if I can get away without a new PSU. I would also like to keep it as quiet as possible. If necessary I will go a bit higher, I want it to be reasonably future proof and I don’t want to skimp.

    I am much more clued up on software than hardware and am confused by the range of CPUs and boards available. I have looked through the archives here but there is a lot of emphasis on games, which don't interest me and I am not sure what is the right approach. Even the sort of RAM to buy seems to open up a can of worms!

    I would be grateful for any advice.

    Rgrds

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    • aidanjt's system
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    If you want a modern box without breaking the bank you'll probably be better off with an AMD rig, the motherboards and CPU is more afordable, as for GPUs, any nVidia card is your only choice for Linux since ATis linux drivers are a puddle of piss.

    The Asus M2NPV-MX might be a good choice for motherboard, it has an onboard GeForce 6 class GPU, AM2, it's only MicroATX so it's somewhat space limited. Optionally, the Asus M2N4-SLI is in the same price range (about £55ish) full lenght ATX, you could pick up a 7600GS for a tad over £60, 1GB of Corsair XMS2-6400C4 memory for about £80, a retail boxed AMD 3800+ for about £58, that leaves £100 for a case and PSU (if your old one really is old).

    More than machine enough to run Linux and Vista if you so desire in the future.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    • Marcvs's system
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    or just wait for the 8300gt's they are supposed to be dirt cheap

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    Quote Originally Posted by aidanjt View Post
    If you want a modern box without breaking the bank you'll probably be better off with an AMD rig, the motherboards and CPU is more afordable,
    Thanks for the response - I have been seduced by the idea of the dual core processors that Intel make. Presumably AMD have similar capabilities??

    Rgrds

    Peter

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    AMD's current dual cores are significantly weaker than Intels offerings. The only thing they currently have in their favour is being a little bit cheaper but the lower end of the Intel cpu's perform as well as the higher end AMD's plus you can't really overclock the 5600 -6000+ as they are pretty much as high as they will go where even the cheapest E4300 intel will clock to speeds exeeding 3Ghz (the highest clock of the AMD's)

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    • aidanjt's system
      • Motherboard:
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    Agreed, the E4300 would be the better choice if he could stretch the budget that far.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    Quote Originally Posted by aidanjt View Post
    Agreed, the E4300 would be the better choice if he could stretch the budget that far.
    Thanks for that - what sort of motherboard should I go for? I am prepared to stretch the budget as I hope to keep the system running for a good while, I don't upgrade often.

    Rgrds

    Peter

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    • aidanjt's system
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      • Memory:
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    The Asus P5B-E Plus is a good solid board from what I hear. costs about £85-90, shop around for a bargin.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    • DratUK's system
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    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=434330

    Asus P5B

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=291364

    2 Gb Corsair 667 Value Ram

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=430631

    E6300 Core 2


    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=256335

    430 Watt Seasonic PSU from the S12 Series so good solid otput. There are cheaper but no point on scrimping on the PSU

    http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Produ...oductID=428735

    Leadtek 7300 Silent Vid card. None Turbo Cache version so it wont draw on your system ram.

    Total £369.85 inc delivery.
    The P5B is the value version of the deluxe. OC quite nicely. Solid reputation.

    Just one example I am sure with the lads on here more suggestions will come your way.

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    I was under the impression AMD was a lot better for linux systems?

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    Not that I'm aware of, for Linux it's more about the architecture and both Intel and AMD are both x86. Although I'm not an expert so I could be talking out my bottom. Not had any problems with either Intel or AMD running linux systems.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DratUK View Post

    Just one example I am sure with the lads on here more suggestions will come your way.
    Thanks for that - and thanks to all.

    I've just noticed that everything I need to seems to be on todayonly at Scan , so I'd better get my finger out!

    Rgrds

    Peter

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    if you go with an nVidia 650i based mobo (e.g. P5N -E SLI) you will have 2 native IDE channels (4 devices) instead of 1 (2 devices0 via an add-on controller.

    MSI P55-GD80, i5 750
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    My HEXUS.trust abit forums

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    Quote Originally Posted by Biscuit View Post
    I was under the impression AMD was a lot better for linux systems?
    Neither CPUs are better nor worse for Linux, the chipsets though is another matter, nForce used to be horrible, now the drivers are more mature, Intel's chipsets are also very very mature, but some things like the JMicron controllers were giving people hassle, good support for them was only introduced in Linux 2.6.18 iirc.

    Mileage varies really, whatever hardware you get can make or break a Linux installation attempt, and software variations determine it. The only universal truth is ATi's Linux drivers are a puddle of piss.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agent View Post
    ...every time Creative bring out a new card range their advertising makes it sound like they have discovered a way to insert a thousand Chuck Norris super dwarfs in your ears...

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    Quote Originally Posted by BUFF View Post
    if you go with an nVidia 650i based mobo (e.g. P5N -E SLI) you will have 2 native IDE channels (4 devices) instead of 1 (2 devices0 via an add-on controller.
    After all the advice here (for which much thanks) and the current Todayonly on Scan I am thinking along the following lines:

    CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6320, Socket 775, 1.86 GHz, 1066MHz FSB, Allendale Core, 4MB Cache, Retail £109.86 (t/o)

    RAM: 2Gb (2X1Gb) Corsair Value Select, DDR2 PC5300 (667) £78.73 (t/o)

    And then ..
    Either (A):
    Asus P5B-VM iG965, S775, PCI-E (x16), DDR2 533/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, uATX, On Board VGA £70.49 (t/o)

    plus a SATA drive, say
    250 Gb Western Digital WD2500KS Caviar SE16, SATA300, 7200 rpm, 16MB Cache, 8.9 ms £43.18 (t/o)

    Or (B):
    Asus P5N-E SLI NF650i SLi, S 775, PCI-E (x16), DDR2 533/667/800, SATA II, SATA RAID, ATX with dual IDE £75.05 (normal stock)

    256Mb XFX 7600GS, PCI-E (x16), Mem 700MHz, GPU 400MHz, 12 Pipes, Dual DVI-I/HDTV £58.16 (t/o)

    I lean towards B as I have plenty of IDE storage and it might make more sense to put the extra into graphics.

    Does this make sense?

    Rgrds

    Peter

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    If your happy with B go for it.

    Realising that the 7600 will be superseded by 8600 in a couple of weeks at similar prices? Would it be worth the wait for a DX10 budget card or are you unlikely to want DX10 atm. IE do you have a copy of Vista. Sorry to throw a spanner albeit a small spanner into your plan

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