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Thread: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

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    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    I think I just built the best budget build ever haha.

    CPU: AMD Sempron 140 - Fleabay, £15
    Motherboard: MSI 785GM-E51 - Ebuyer, £50
    RAM: 4GB OCZ 1333MHZ CL7 1.65V - Fleabay, £40
    PSU: CoolerMaster Silent Pro M 500W - Fleabay, £25

    That totals £130. Obviously the things are worth more than though. Case and HDD is just my spare bits. Motherboard is pretty nice in how it has integrated HD4200 which seems to play all HD video with no problems. I didn't test out any games though.

    Unlocked the CPU to a dual core "AMD Athlon II X2 440/ AMD Athlon II X2 4400e" not sure which exactly is the right one on CPU-Z. As a single core it was running at 30 degrees idle.



    Can't do any testing to the unlocked CPU at all as I can't see the temperature with CPUID, speedfan, everest, CoreTemp or RealTemp. I've searched around on google and it seems other people have the same problem. 3D Mark Vantage also said system was unidentified or something and got stuck on "Scanning system specs" so I can't benchmark it with that either.

    The unlocked dual core sure owns though, I haven't tried a core voltage of more than 1.45V but the chip doesn't seem to want to boot with any combination of 4Ghz. I've not overclocked an AMD system before so I've just been messing about with the system really. I set the Core Voltage to 1.48V in BIOS (1.45V-ish in CPU-Z and surprisingly under load it was also roughly 1.45V, no Vdroop oddly enough), set the NB Voltage to 1.2V and HT voltage was linked to it and it was 1.26V or something. SB Voltage I upped to 1.3V

    The system seems stable at 3.8ghz however after a few rounds of Prime it errors out or restarts.

    I backed it down to 3.6ghz and Prime seems stable enough but I didn't do it over long periods. I dunno what the temps are though as I can't test it. Perhaps the reading in CPUID is right which is a bit hot as max temp for these are meant to be 65 degrees.

    No matter what the speed is, SuperPi seems really slow though. I recall having around 15s for my E5300 at 3.6ghz which also has 2MB L2 cache too. Weird. Guess architect really matters.



    This is all done with the stock cooler by the way. (The one WITHOUT the copper heatpipes) I did get Noctua to send me an AM2/AM3 bracket but by the time it arrives I properly won't be bothered to test the system out again haha.

    So yeah, in the end £15 for a 3.6ghz dual core processor seems pretty good



    EDIT: I've thought of a "semi"-benchmark that should work, Windows Experience Index. Gonna run it in a moment.



    Processor: 6.9
    Memory (RAM): 5.9
    Graphics: 4.2
    Gaming Graphics: 5.5
    Primary Hard Disk: 5.4

    Not sure why the memory is so bad, 1424mhz CL7 shouldn't be that bad.

    My system on the left: <-
    Processor:6.9
    Memory (RAM): 6.9
    Graphics: 7.3
    Gaming Graphics: 7.3
    Primary Hard Disk: 5.9
    Last edited by Ulti; 24-12-2009 at 11:18 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Looks a good setup for the money you paid!!


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Sounds like you got yourself a real bargain there!

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Nice bargain.
    ~'Armaments, universal debt, and planned obsolescence--those are the three pillars of Western prosperity'~ Aldous Huxley




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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    good stuff!

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Lol thats amazing. How did you unlock the CPU by chance?

  7. #7
    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Well I've heard people had VERY good unlock rates, something like 4 out of 5 will unlock. When I first setup the motherboard it had no unlock option and so I went on the MSI site and it had a new BIOS for pretty much every board to unlock cores. Downloaded the MSI live update and flashed through windows. Restarted pc and I went into BIOS and I could unlock cores

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Very impressive.

    freEbay is the way to go for some things

  9. #9
    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Hehe, sometimes I'm just browsing about and jump on these bargains. Still can't seem to find a cheap 4770 or a P45/X38 board though but oh well, can run every game I actually play fine.

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Quote Originally Posted by Ulti View Post
    Hehe, sometimes I'm just browsing about and jump on these bargains. Still can't seem to find a cheap 4770 or a P45/X38 board though but oh well, can run every game I actually play fine.
    I think it is worth looking out for a cheap 45NM X2 5000+ which runs at 2.2GHZ. Unlike the earlier 65NM 2.6GHZ X2 5000+ the 45NM version is based on a Phenom II X4 and people have unlocked it to a quad core!!

    Scan had them yesterday for well under £40 too!!


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

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    Ulti (28-12-2009)

  12. #11
    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Wow, that would be good. A quad core for under £40 is a total steal haha.

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Wow, seriously impressed! nice work.

  14. #13
    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Ah I see the AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ in Scan's today only for only £35 but I haven't got an AM2 board. Guess I won't try and get a quad core out of it then. Imagine if it unlocked though... £35 for a quad core haha.

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Overclock the NB.

  16. #15
    Poor graduate. Ulti's Avatar
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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    Doesn't overclocking the NB just make the system more unstable? I'm new when it comes to overclocking AMD systems but I remember there was little performance gain from OCing the NB yet it made the system more unstable.

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    Re: I just built an AM3 system for £130 :O

    AMD's get a huge performance gain from NB, if your board allows for voltage changes, then definatley get at least to 2.6ghz, because then you will get faster L3 performance.

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