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Windows 7: Piecing together from several towers


11 Jul 2011   #11

windows 7 ultimate
 
 

The reason the tower with the SE440BX-2 can run the 168 pin SDRAM is because that's not the motherboard that is actually in the tower.

I just assumed because of the sticker on the inside of tower case, but upon closer inspection, I see it has been replaced with a ASUS P4B533 motherboard with a agp slot.

And yes, you guys are right, the Dell 4500 has a agp slot, not a pci-e.

The tower with the ASUS motherboard came with a xpert 2000pro ultra 32mb agp card, which I replaced with the 256mb agp from the Dell 4500 and it seems like this tower with ASUS motherboard runs the best.

Is this the best motherboard out of the three I have?

Will I fry my motherboard if I get a graphics card that requires a bigger psu than I have?

I'm considering getting one of these from Amazon, but I only have a 300psu in my ASUS tower:

Amazon.com: GIGABYTE nVidia GeForce 6200 512MB DDR2 VGA/DVI Low Profile AGP Video Card GV-N62-512L: Electronics

Amazon.com: XFX ATI Radeon HD 4650 1 GB DDR2 Graphics Card HD465XZDF2: Electronics

or this for my Dell 2400 250psu:

Amazon.com: PNY GeForce 8400 GS 512 MB PCI Video Graphics Card VCG84512SPPB: Electronics

Also, I'm not familiar with Windows 7 readyboost, but designated a 8gb flash drive that I have to it to try it out...does this really make a difference?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 Jul 2011   #12

windows 7 ultimate 64 bit
 
 

The best card by far is the XFX 4650....and its not that great....

The best motherboard is the ASUS....

No you won't fry the motherboard with a weak PSU...however you might have a no boot, or a boot to a black screen....sudden shutdowns....ect.....A better solution since you plan on getting a card would be to get a decent lower end PSUNewegg.com - Rosewill Green Series RG530-S12 530W Continuous @40°C, 80 PLUS Certified, Single 12V Rail, Active PFC "Compatible with Core i7,i5" Power Supply Not the best psu in the world, but its doing most of the heavy lifting in my system for now....no problems, and the computer will not shutdown if the power "blips"....and it will leave you with a good backup PSU.....

However I would question spending ANY money on the system you would end up with....AGP is dead....P4 systems WILL suddenly die on you...and I speak from experience on this.....A better solution would be to put together the best that you can, with what you have, and save up for a new rig....A cheap Walmart E machine would smoke anything you could make from those systems, and have a PCIe slot...if not the PSU to back up said slot.....

If you plan on using Windows 7 don't use a OEM copy...or you will be calling up Microsoft trying to get activated on a new system.....

Ready boost would help, but those old systems most likely were USB 1.1.....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Jul 2011   #13

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Hi there
My take on this would be why not buy a nice modern MB with a decent CPU as a bundle -- for example you can get some ASUS MB's with a fast 4 Core AMD Phenom II processor thrown in for around 160 - 200 USD.

Most of the later MB's will support HDMI from the built in video -- there's 4 memory slots as well giving you a possibility of 16 GB RAM (memory is chep enough now).

Fit this into one of your towers and use the HDD / DVD drives "cannabilized" from the parts.

The case of any of these towers will be OK for the MB including the PSU. Make sure if you want game playing that the PSU is capable of 250 - 300 Watts as a minimum - especially if you want to add your own graphics / GPU later.


Now you've got a super fast cheap rig. - When moneys up to it get an SSD as well !!!

There's really no point in using some of that really old stuff unless all you want is for file / print serving

Cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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12 Jul 2011   #14

Window's 7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Kingston HyperX 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model KHX6400D2K2/4G

ASUS M4A785-M AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX AMD MotherboardAMD Athlon II X3 435 Rana 2.9GHz Socket AM3 95W Triple-Core Desktop Processor ADX435WFGMBOX

In a HP case for $216.00 without a better power supply just put this system together for a client not to long ago blew the caps on the original board used original hard drive and other stuff had to install a reset switch and rewire power plug but it is a nice upgrade and it unlocked the 4 th core i believe on this one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2011   #15

windows 7 ultimate
 
 

I understand what everyone's saying.

It seems silly to invest more money on a relic when for a couple of hundred dollars, I could build a desktop that would blow away what I currently have, but the main reason I wanted the graphic card was for the hdmi connection - the onboard sound is horrible.

I was holding off on buying the new laptop because I wanted to see if my old laptop was repairable, but I just found out that I probably need a new motherboard from my repair guy.

I'm debating whether to invest around 200 to see if my laptop can be fixed...there's no guarantee a new motherboard would fix my laptop.

Do you guys think it's worth the 200 to see if the laptop can be repaired with a new motherboard?

As for the towers, I spent a hundred dollars on all 3 towers with the intent of selling one for 50 to a friend who just picked it up today.

So for 50 dollars, I got a couple of antiques that can be used for backup...not a bad deal.

I've always wanted to build my own system, but thought the technical realm was beyond me.

Can most motherboards generally fit into any sort of tower casing?

Would it be less expensive to build your own system to a comparable store bought tower?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2011   #16

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Hi there

1) From SCRATCH your gear would be more expensive than a modest low end store bought model but it would be STREETS ahead.

2) However IF you have things like a decent case / old HDD and some memory then buying a new MB with a processor and fitting it into the old case is FAR CHEAPER and still better. Get an ASUS MB with the Phenom II 4 core processor as a bundle - these are available fairly cheaply currently.

The MB referred to in the previous post in this thread is a good one and easy to connect up.

As for laptops - if the MB is broken get a new laptop -- decent ones can be had now for very cheap money since people are for some strange reason all thinking about buying tablets. Even a modest netbook can be had for 200 - 300 USD and most of the newer ones have decent HDMI out that you can feed into a decent monitor / TV screen.

Replacing a desktop MB is fairly simple - you don't need to be a skilled engineer.

The only tricky part is ensuring the power LED and the RESET SW are connected properly to the MB from the case but these leads are marked clearly anyway.

This is the only part that might cause a problem -- this has to be correct or the MB won't boot !!!! but it's quite easy really.

Shouldn't take you more than 2 or 3 hours to dismantle and assemble the new piece of kit.

Note most ATX MB's WILL fit into a tower casing -- actually not a bad idea if you have space as cooling won't be a problem which it can be in smaller footprint cases.

Tower cases also have more space for things like adding more HDD's etc.

What you MUST ensure is that the PSU (Power unit) has the full modern set of connectors --- should be 24. You might depending on the age of your tower(s) have to change the PSU -- this is only 4 screws to undo and a new one is also fairly cheap -- 300 Watts should be more than enough and allow for expansion (more HDD's / memory / video GPU etc.

cheers
jimbo
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2011   #17

windows 7 ultimate 64 bit
 
 

NewEgg runs specials all the time on bundles...just go to their site and sign up for the Emails, and the offers will pour in.....

Since DDR3 is due to be replaced soon I would buy a motherboard that uses that instead of DDR2....I got 8gigs of DDR3 1333 for $58 that's two 4gig modules

If you shop around you can find a deal on a laptop....just avoid the Intel graphics....
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Jul 2011   #18
Microsoft MVP

Windows 8.1 Pro with Media Center 64 bit
 
 

I bough my system as a bare bones kit. I've upgraded some parts along the way from what I started with and reused some of what I had on hand. Some assembly required but at least you know what comes in the box should all be compatible. I had a usable PC with about a day worth of work. The more you spend the better the parts that come in the boxes. I've got burned once by buying parts one at a time over an extended period. By the time I got all parts needed to power it up I found out the first thing I bough was a dud and it was too late to return it. Lesson learned.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Piecing together from several towers




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