ideal barebones system

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by o_2_b_sean, Jul 12, 2002.

  1. I am planning on building a barebones P4 system in the next few weeks. Can anyone suggest some barebones systems that would accommodate these requirements:

    - P4 2.2 - 2.4 Ghz
    - 500 - 1G ram
    - no onboard audio/raid/network/video on the mobo
    - a basic video card, no 3d, no multimonitor support needed
    - support for older ports like serial/ps2 on the mobo
    ( I haven't moved to USB everything yet)
    - support for DDR SDRAM as well as the newer RDRAM

    the main reason I am asking here, is that frankly I am totally overwhelmed by the ammount of choices I have. A few years ago when I built my P3 system, it wasn't too hard. It seems like nowadays putting together a machine has taken on a new level of complexity. More than anything else, I am really looking for motherboard suggestions that fulfill the above requirements.
  2. I'm curious, why would you not want onboard video if you aren't going to use it for 3d? onboard video, sound and lan is an added bonus if you don't need specialized cards for these functions. Almost all newer chipsets have onboard sound because it's integrated into their southbridge.

    Also, I don't think there is a chipset that allows for both RD-RAM and DDR-RAM. You're going to have to choose which type of memory you want and pick a chipset from there.
  3. Good points. Maybe onboard video would be ok then. I just don't want to pay extra when I have a gazillion NICs lying around, for example.

    If I had to choose the RAM, it would be DDR SDRAM, I guess.
  4. The shuttle ss50 looks nice, but since I already have several NICs, an ATI all-in-wonder pro 128, a nice sound card, I would kind of like to use those if possible. The ss50 sure is cute though.
  5. I have the SS40G that I'm putting together. It's actually an expensive way to go and the expandability is limited. I got it because it looks nice and is small but I'd say I'm paying an extra $150 versus something with the same specs in a different format.
  6. pokey,

    I am starting to think about the Athlon XP myself. Looking at the benchmarks, the Athlon XP actually does much better than the P4 in many cases, especially the floating point calcs, number crunching, etc. Since the whole point of my new system is to crunch data faster, it seems logical to go with the Athlon XP given its performance and price. Athlon 1800+, KT333 motherboard, 512 meg pc2700 ddr ram = $300.
  7. Sean

    Your not going to find a motherboard that uses both kinds of ram because the chipsets are different. Also, it going to be hard these days to find a Intel motherboard without audio. However, if your dying for an Intel board without audio, I would suggest the Asus P4B266. One of the best boards out there and the one I would recommend is the Asus P4t533. Its a terrific board. It incluedes the Cmedia audio chip which is supposed to drain the least amount of power out of all the chips and one of the best sounding.

    I build alot of computers for friends and they prefer AMD. AMD processors create alot of heat. AMD has finally gotten around to addressing this problem in the AMD XP CPU. They've incorporated a thermal diode function into this chip which allows the motherboard to shut down the computer if the fan stops working or the motherboard starts to overheat. However, there is only two brands of AMD motherboards that have this feature. Abit and Asus. My favorite AMD motheboard is the ABIT KX7-333. I used it in my own computer, one of the best.

    For an inexpensive video card I would suggest Visiontek XTSY-5632. I believe its around 45 dollars. U could spend twice as much and still not come close to its performance

    TaKe CaRe

  8. sean,

    I currently have an Athlon System and am building a SS40G system with an Athlon XP 1800+. Now I am not particularly pro AMD or anti Intel; I wouldn't be able to tell the difference between an Athlon XP and a Pentium 4 once it's in the computer case. To be honest if the Pentium 4 and Athlon XP's were the same price I'd probably pick the Pentium 4.

    However, on a price-to-performance perspective, the Athlon XP is a much better value in my opinion. For instance the Athlon 1800+ is about half the price of Pentium 4 1.8GHz. Plus the Athlons don't have the reliability/compatibility problems that the older AMD CPU's use to have.

    With that said and as mentioned by Sterling, the Athlons tend to run hotter and as such the heatsink/fans for the Athlons tend to be loud. So you need to be careful when picking out a heatsink. My friend just purchased a heatsink for his Athlons that is suppose to be quieter than the one he currently has (which is driving him insane). We are going to be testing it this weekend and I can let you know how it works out if you'd like.

    BTW, personally I don't think the increase in performance of PC2700 DDR is worth the currently price premium over PC2100 DDR. Also I know you are planning to use parts you have laying around... are you planning to use a power supply you have laying around too?
    #10     Jul 13, 2002