Assuming all parts show up on time, JEservices and I will be building my new computer on Saturday, 10/16. For a detailed thread on how I made my component decisions, see the thread in this forum entitled Have $1,500, help me decide on hardware!
I made all my purchases from on-line e-tailers, as I found their prices to be much better than going to a retail computer parts store. And I decided to build rather than buy from Dell for 2 reasons: 1) Because I can get more for my money, and 2) There is so much great information and great people on the Internet to help me (like JEservices). If I had to do this alone, I probably would have shied away from building myself. But there's comfort in knowing I will have people who've done this before helping me every step of the way... kudos to BleepingComputer.com!
I ended up using 3 different e-tailers: Outpost.com (video card), Dell.com (surge protector), and Newegg.com (everything else). The parts I chose are as follows (see thread listed above for pictures):Case
: A-Top XBlade Black/Silver with 450W Power Supply - Retail Packaging - $63.502 Replacement Case Fans
: Antec All Clear Pro 120mm Double Ball Bearing Case Fans - Retail Packaging - $14.99 each, $29.98 for twoMotherboard
: AOpen AX4SPE Max II with Intel 865PE Chipset for Socket 478 CPU - Retail Packaging - $116.00Processor
: Intel Pentium 4, 3.2E HGz, 800 MHz FSB, 1MB L2 Cache, Hyper-Threading Technology, Socket 478 - Retail Packaging - $222.00System Memory
: 2 Sticks of A-Data 184-pin, 512MB DDR, PC-3200 Unbuffered and Non-ECC - OEM Packaging - $70.00 each, $140.00 for twoHard Drive
: Maxtor Ultra Series Kit 120GB 7,200 SATA Hard Drive - Retail Packaging - $108.00Optical Drive #1
: Lite-On 16X DVD/CD Writer, Dual Layer Support, 2MB Buffer - Retail Packaging - $84.00Optical Drive #2
: Lite-On CD Writer and DVD-ROM Drive, 2MB Buffer - Retail Packaging - $45.00Floppy Drive
: Mitsumi Internal Combo 3.5" Floppy and USB 2.0 Card Reader - OEM Packaging - $25.00Sound Card
: Creative Labs Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS, 7.1 Channel Support, 24-Bit Digital Audio - Retail Packaging - $91.99Video Card
: BFG Technologies nVIDIA GeForce FX6800 Overclocked, Lifetime Warranty & 24-Hour Support - Retail Packaging - $249.99External Hard Drive Enclosure
: Coolmax Silver Aluminum USB 2.0 Enclosure for 3.5" or 5.25" Drives, Includes Cooling Fan - Retail Packaging - $36.99Broadband Router/Print Server
: D-Link 4-Port Router Plus USB 1.1 Print Server - Retail Packaging - $58.00Surge Protector
: Belkin Surgemaster Gold, 10-Outlet with Coax Protection - Retail Packaging - $31.20
Total Cost Before Taxes and Shipping: $1,301.65
Total Taxes and Shipping: $85.61
Grand Total: $1,387.26
In case you're wondering about a monitor, keyboard, and mouse, I am going to be re-using these items from my old Dell computer. The monitor is an off-white 19" model P991 CRT, the keyboard is the standard off-white Dell Quietkey keyboard, and the mouse is a Logitech analog mouse with a scroll wheel. Re-using these three items (the monitor especially) allowed me to do better on the sound and video cards which should really make this computer one to last for quite a while. Plus it allows me to save up for a future purchase - a larger monitor!
Anyway, now you know what I'm going to have. As soon as the parts roll in, I will start taking the pictures and posting them. When the build day arrives, I will document everything as best I can (including pics) and make sure to post that as well. I really want this to be an educational tool for those on the fence about whether to build or buy pre-assembled. I also want this to be entertaining.
If you all are half as anxious as I am to see the continuation of this thread, imagine my giddiness!