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FORUMS General Gear Talk Computers 
Thread started 01 Jun 2014 (Sunday) 11:26
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Best bang for the buck desktop?

 
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1Tanker
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Jun 02, 2014 17:08 |  #31

CameraMan wrote in post #16947256 (external link)
Well, I don't have an engineering degree. As a matter of fact I don't have ANY kind of computer degree but I can build them with my eyes closed. There are plenty of tutorials out there on how to put a computer together from scratch.

All it takes is the desire to build one and some basic assembly skills. Take one apart and look inside. Basically, these are the parts needed to build a computer. If you feel that you can replicate that with newer hardware then maybe you can build a computer.

If you're intimidated by what's inside then maybe you shouldn't attempt it.

Assembling the machine (hardware) is only 1/2 the job of building a good stable machine. Knowing your way around Windows and other apps (software), tricks and (registry)hacks, can turn a so-so machine, into a solid rig.

Of course, we all started somewhere, and things are easier now. ;)

* Overclocking with DIP-switches, wire wrapping pins,pencil mods,etc... was a PITA.. though rewarding. :D


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Jun 02, 2014 17:35 |  #32

I'm not trying to argue the relative difficulty of learning to or building your own computer. My only point was that some people don't have the time or interest and I hate to see every thread pushing people to roll their own. Heck, it might not be any cheaper once you factor in the value of the 10+ hours or so involved with choosing and ordering parts, construction, hardware tests, OS install + updates, driver download and install, tweaks and troubleshooting, etc.


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tim
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Jun 02, 2014 17:59 |  #33

CameraMan wrote in post #16947256 (external link)
Well, I don't have an engineering degree. As a matter of fact I don't have ANY kind of computer degree but I can build them with my eyes closed. There are plenty of tutorials out there on how to put a computer together from scratch.

All it takes is the desire to build one and some basic assembly skills. Take one apart and look inside. Basically, these are the parts needed to build a computer. If you feel that you can replicate that with newer hardware then maybe you can build a computer.

If you're intimidated by what's inside then maybe you shouldn't attempt it.

There are details that are fiddly though. Mounting heatsinks is a pita. If you have to redo thermal paste that's annoying. Cable routing I'm still rubbish at. None of it is particularly difficult though.


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Jun 02, 2014 18:04 as a reply to  @ tim's post |  #34

And for the uninitiated.....the BIOS/UEFI can be downright scary! :lol:


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Jun 02, 2014 18:07 |  #35

it's kinda hard finding these type of desktops, and your options are really limited. I ordered a dell for a worker, but it was really hard finding one with SSD. Might consider making your own.

500gb SSD
+ 2TB drive 1
+ 2TB drive 2

would be a good setup.

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tim
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Jun 03, 2014 00:46 |  #36

500GB SSD is overkill for most people, especially if you can put stuff on other drives. 120GB is fine, I like the Samsung 840 pro (external link).

I have 80GB free on my 120GB SSD, Windows 7 pro. I don't have caches on that SSD though, they could take up to 60GB, and a lightroom catalog could take a bit as well.


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Jun 03, 2014 00:58 |  #37

tim wrote in post #16948076 (external link)
500GB SSD is overkill for most people, especially if you can put stuff on other drives. 120GB is fine, I like the Samsung 840 pro (external link).

I have 80GB free on my 120GB SSD, Windows 7 pro. I don't have caches on that SSD though, they could take up to 60GB, and a lightroom catalog could take a bit as well.

SSDs have gotten so cheap, I'd go for 250 GB. My C drive is 250 GB and I'm currently using 157 GB. I too keep as many caches on another drive but some stuff just REALLY wants to be on the Windows drive. Also, a more lightly loaded SSD will have more latitude to swap out bad sectors. I have two 840 EVO's and an 830. (Second EVO is for Virtual Box) All have done a great job.




  
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Jun 03, 2014 01:15 |  #38

True, 250GB is nice, but 120GB is possible for someone on a budget or with lesser needs. I could've gotten 250GB, 500GB, wasn't the cost that meant I got the 120GB, that was all I needed. 60GB would be a bit of a squeeze with caches and swap file.


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Jun 03, 2014 18:50 |  #39

Nice site. I put together a nice top of the line system for a little over $2000. But that included top notch i7 3.7ghz cpu, asus motherboard, 240gb ssd drive, 2tb eide drive, windows 8.1 (cheaper than Windows 7), and some extra odds and ends (case, mouse, keyword, etc). Not a badlittle site.

I used to use pricewatch but I bought all my stuff for my last system from newegg.


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Jun 06, 2014 13:51 |  #40

tim wrote in post #16947356 (external link)
There are details that are fiddly though. Mounting heatsinks is a pita. If you have to redo thermal paste that's annoying. Cable routing I'm still rubbish at. None of it is particularly difficult though.

Thermal paste isn't an absolute must unless you overclock the system. I've removed/reinstalled heatsinks on my own computers to dust it off. I don't reapply thermal paste. Never got overheating problem.

1Tanker wrote in post #16947365 (external link)
And for the uninitiated.....the BIOS/UEFI can be downright scary! :lol:

It's plug n play these days. BIOS used to be worse back in 286/386/486 days where users must know the correct settings for the hard disk (Cyln, Head, WPCom, LZone, Sect). No auto detect.




  
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Jun 06, 2014 15:55 |  #41

morph2_7 wrote in post #16955904 (external link)
Thermal paste isn't an absolute must unless you overclock the system. I've removed/reinstalled heatsinks on my own computers to dust it off. I don't reapply thermal paste. Never got overheating problem.

It's plug n play these days. BIOS used to be worse back in 286/386/486 days where users must know the correct settings for the hard disk (Cyln, Head, WPCom, LZone, Sect). No auto detect.

Have you "dug into" a Haswell mobo's UEFI? The defaults leave a lot of the low-power state settings (among other parameters) disabled. As well, i stated in an earlier post, that the difference from just "plugging and playing" a machine, and fine-tuning can be huge. I can set up a several-hundred dollar cheaper rig, to perform as well as the more expensive one (overclocking excluded), just through tweaking the BIOS/UEFI and OS tweaks. An OEM machine has very limited BIOS/UEFI settings available to "tweak".. crippling a lot of the HW's potential. Add in bloatware, and general assembly-line-type performance, and it's a pity what these machines start out like.

Not re/re TIM is a bad idea, whether OC'ing or not.

Yes, i remember the old BIOS'..my 1st machine was a 386SX/16, 2MB RAM :lol:, 42MB HDD(doubled to 84MB using Stacker), 5-1/4" floppy..14" SVGA monitor. DOS and then Windows 3.1.


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Jun 06, 2014 17:07 |  #42

morph2_7 wrote in post #16955904 (external link)
Thermal paste isn't an absolute must unless you overclock the system. I've removed/reinstalled heatsinks on my own computers to dust it off. I don't reapply thermal paste. Never got overheating problem.

I wouldn't recommend that approach. The heatsink must be securely attached to the CPU otherwise it will fry or shut off your system even doing routine tasks. I think you've been lucky so far, leftover paste and such doing the job.


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Jun 06, 2014 17:59 |  #43

I guess so. About 14 years ago, I ran CPU intensive software that pegged the CPU usage at 100% constantly for many hours. Didn't have any problem back then. That was a Pentium III CPU. I know newer CPUs generate a lot more heat than the old ones.

I'm currently using a Q6600 quad core at home. Never had any system lock-up or hardware failure due to overheating. I don't run any CPU intensive processes for hours anymore. Perhaps when I upgrade to i7, I will consider reapplying thermal paste after removing/reinstalling heat sink.




  
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Jun 06, 2014 21:40 |  #44

Why do you feel the need to pull the CPU heatsink to dust it off? That's what canned air is for.




  
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tkbslc
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Jun 06, 2014 22:33 |  #45

Ironically, I bet a dusty heatsink works better than one with no paste! :)

morph2_7 wrote in post #16955904 (external link)
Thermal paste isn't an absolute must unless you overclock the system. I've removed/reinstalled heatsinks on my own computers to dust it off. I don't reapply thermal paste. Never got overheating problem.
.

Without paste, the CPU will run about twice as hot. Whether that's important or not I guess is up to the individual, but it definitely is to me.

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