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is it worth building a low end custom PC?


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#1 Hello_from_ny

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Posted 23 February 2015 - 04:58 PM

My dad has an HP pavilion running windows vista. I do not know what model number persay. He asked me why it would run slow and I said prebuilts don't last as long as customs and the lack of air flow. What other reasons can I list?

Most of the problem appear to be space and I was originally just going to clone the HDD onto another one.

Instead he asked if it would be worthwhile to build a custom low end PC instead of buying another prebuilt.

While the model kit builder in me loves the idea, do you think its worthwhile? Building a custom PC with similar specs to a a low end computer?

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#2 YeahBleeping

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Posted 23 February 2015 - 05:09 PM

I 'finished building' a 'barebones' pc from magicmicro.com.  I picked out a decent build and put my own memory I had in it. No video card just on board and the smallest SSD I could get my hands on.  Windows 7 home premium with no warranty or anything for like 600.  When I got the computer I installed the memory I had and it booted up just fine, I then added the hard drive from their old computer as a second drive in the system and took ownership of all the files so my parents had all their pictures and files etc..  For me it was the easiest way to upgrade them and have a very fast pc (ssd) (new I3) than the old computer they had which was an old Dell AMD I think.  They are very happy with it and it is going strong now after 2 years and I only have to get rid of the malware when they download it.  With the intel grapics card it still plays the games they play just fine and a lot better than their old one.

 

I also forgot to welcome you to BC so .... Welcome to BC ~!!!


Edited by YeahBleeping, 23 February 2015 - 09:08 PM.


#3 OldPhil

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Posted 23 February 2015 - 06:27 PM

IMO go for it!  There are many combo CPU/board/graphics/sound combos quite cheap.

 

A few on this page.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00KYMG6K2/ref=asc_df_B00KYMG6K23552786?smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER&tag=pg-474-06-20&linkCode=df0&creative=395097&creativeASIN=B00KYMG6K2


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#4 DJBPace07

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:01 AM

Although a combo/kit from a builder can be convenient, that doesn't mean the parts would work well together or be a good, well rounded build.  Assuming this is a basic PC without the need for lots of storage and processing capability, you can get a reasonable DIY build with quality parts.  However, if you are chasing the bottom line and want a bare bones build at a bargain basement price, you may be better served purchasing a pre-built PC from a major manufacturer.

 

Here's an idea:

 

Motherboard:  GIGABYTE GA-F2A88XM-D3H FM2+ / FM2 AMD A88X - You don't need anything special for a basic home office PC.  $69

 

CPU:  AMD A8-7600 Kaveri Quad-Core 3.1GHz - Nothing too remarkable is needed here.  $98

 

RAM:  Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 8GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 - Should be enough for a while.  $59

 

Case:  Rosewill R363-M-BK - This is a micro-ATX case with a 400W power supply included.  $44

 

ODD:  ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS - You may be able to re-use an old drive, if not, there's this.  $19

 

SSD:  SAMSUNG 850 EVO-Series MZ-75E500B/AM 2.5" 500GB - This should be more than enough space for most users.  If you want something about $100 less expensive, the 250GB version is available here.  You may also need a mounting bracket here.  $239

 

OS:  Windows 8.1 64-bit - You need an operating system.  $99

 

Grand Total:  $632


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#5 Hello_from_ny

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 04:24 PM

@yeahbleeping Thanks for the welcome!!!!! :)

I like the mini PCs but are their one with a DVD drive? If not looks like custom is the way to go.

Thanks.

#6 YeahBleeping

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 04:57 PM

Well I am going to be frank here.. I don't work for magicmicro and I am only posting my experience because it went along with the question.  I am not sure why DJB would even say that " It doesn't mean the parts will work well together".  I have to say thats a pretty bold statement.  System builders .. especially those on the internet go to great lengths to make sure their parts work together.  I think your comments are totally unfounded especially when at the end of the day you put together a system for the same price I quoted. 

 

That being said magicmicro is only one and there are many buy.com and and directron etc..

 

I actually did not get them a ' minipc ' I got them one of the small ' cube ' cases. fits well on the desk.  You can put together any combination from them.  Have fun building a  pc. !



#7 OldPhil

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:08 PM

What is your Dads budget?  Lets not get to carried away!


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#8 ChiefTech

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Posted 24 February 2015 - 08:40 PM

Well I am going to be frank here.. I don't work for magicmicro and I am only posting my experience because it went along with the question.  I am not sure why DJB would even say that " It doesn't mean the parts will work well together".  I have to say thats a pretty bold statement.  System builders .. especially those on the internet go to great lengths to make sure their parts work together.  I think your comments are totally unfounded especially when at the end of the day you put together a system for the same price I quoted. 
 
That being said magicmicro is only one and there are many buy.com and and directron etc..
 
I actually did not get them a ' minipc ' I got them one of the small ' cube ' cases. fits well on the desk.  You can put together any combination from them.  Have fun building a  pc. !

I think what he meant was that more often than not when you get a pc build from places they tend to cut corners with quality. I.E. Ram that isn't that great, etc.
Which is why it's always best to check these things before you buy. OR put together a build similar to the one he's outlined above.

#9 DJBPace07

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Posted 25 February 2015 - 11:49 AM

 

Well I am going to be frank here.. I don't work for magicmicro and I am only posting my experience because it went along with the question.  I am not sure why DJB would even say that " It doesn't mean the parts will work well together".  I have to say thats a pretty bold statement.  System builders .. especially those on the internet go to great lengths to make sure their parts work together.  I think your comments are totally unfounded especially when at the end of the day you put together a system for the same price I quoted. 
 
That being said magicmicro is only one and there are many buy.com and and directron etc..
 
I actually did not get them a ' minipc ' I got them one of the small ' cube ' cases. fits well on the desk.  You can put together any combination from them.  Have fun building a  pc. !

I think what he meant was that more often than not when you get a pc build from places they tend to cut corners with quality. I.E. Ram that isn't that great, etc.
Which is why it's always best to check these things before you buy. OR put together a build similar to the one he's outlined above.

 

That's it.  Newegg has also created combos that, at first glance, work, but a closer examination shows there could be issues.  Such as a micro-ATX motherboard that cannot handle CPU's with a high power draw or a low-quality power supply can barely handle the GPU.  TigerDirect has also done the same thing.  One of the more common combos I've seen with AMD builds is using a non AMD 900 chipset with an FX CPU.  Technically, this works, but some of the FX features can only be used with AMD 900 chipsets.


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#10 YeahBleeping

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Posted 25 February 2015 - 05:15 PM

Ahh I see .. sorry for my mis conception there.. I really don't consider newegg to be a systems integrator.  I know they do have ' build it yourself kits and the like but I would never encourage a purchase of one of them.  You can usually put together a system better from a real integrator ie as in magicmicro/buy.com etc..

 

I do buy a lot of things from newegg.. I just wouldn't buy one of their ' kits ' unless it is just a mobo/memory combo

 

Again I apologize for flying down the wrong road.



#11 DJBPace07

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Posted 26 February 2015 - 07:41 AM

Ahh I see .. sorry for my mis conception there.. I really don't consider newegg to be a systems integrator.  I know they do have ' build it yourself kits and the like but I would never encourage a purchase of one of them.  You can usually put together a system better from a real integrator ie as in magicmicro/buy.com etc..

 

I do buy a lot of things from newegg.. I just wouldn't buy one of their ' kits ' unless it is just a mobo/memory combo

 

Again I apologize for flying down the wrong road.

It's all good! :thumbup2:

 

Newegg and TigerDirect do many things well, but always double check their combos.  A site like PCPartpicker can also be useful, but they should act more as an initial step.  The DIY buyer should do research on the chosen components to better understand why certain parts may have been chosen.


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#12 rtccmichael

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Posted 26 February 2015 - 10:02 AM

In my opinion if you're looking for a "low end" PC I wouldn't bother building one. You can easily get a prebuilt system for $250 or $300; it won't be the most powerful system but 4GB memory and 500GB hard drive is sufficient for many people, and at least you know there won't be compatibility issues and you'll have support/warranty from a major manufacturer. I've built MANY computers and run a Managed Services company but for a low-end PC I think you're not going to save much money by building your own, and certainly if your time is worth anything the couple of bucks you might save will be offset by hours of building and installing OS. Just my two cents.



#13 RobertHD

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Posted 27 February 2015 - 04:38 AM

its possible to build a 300 one


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#14 Rocky Bennett

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Posted 27 February 2015 - 06:36 AM

its possible to build a 300 one

 

 

You have to take into consideration that you have buy an OS, which really makes a sub-300 dollar computer almost impossible to build. Maybe if you are using some recycled parts, but with about $100 gone right away for an OS installation, that does not leave a whole lot for the all of the other parts.


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