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Thread: Advice for BUDGET upgrade

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    Default Advice for BUDGET upgrade

    My friend wants to gut his old 478 platform and use the shell to rebuild - I still have to assess whether the PSU will hold up under a new platform with a video card, but I need some advice on what's going to be the best budget value here.

    I was thinking I would just grab a cheap mATX Z68 board with the entry level Sandy Bridge Celeron processor (2.4Ghz, 2mb L3 cache I believe), 8 GB of RAM and an HD 6850... that should run something like ~$350 or less.

    Does that sound good or can I do better?

    What about Ivy Bridge coming out in early April... do you think they will have a Celeron offering soon after the main release and is it worth waiting?

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    Why would you go for a Z68 platform, when you can save a considerable amount of money if you pick a more suitable platform for such a system, say a P61 or an H61. Possibly even H67, but only for the native SATA3 interface, and only if there will ever be an SSD in the machine. If not, feel free to cut the costs there and invest in a new case and/or a better PSU. As for the Celeron, well, I personally think that the Pentiums have a definitive edge over them, so they're worth their difference in price. What about the HDD? There weren't that many S478 boards with SATA connectors, and HDDs are pretty expensive nowadays... If your friend has a PATA HDD, there is only one line of Sandy Bridge motherboards that I know of, that has a PATA port - ASUS P8H67 (and it's miniATX brethren, the -M variants, regular, PRO and EVO).
    Careful what you wish for... You just might get it.

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    The power supply, unless upgraded from the day may not have SATA connectors, these can be cheap or expensive.
    If you are looking for discounts there are some refurbished Asus oem boards available from geeks.com, worth a look. No cables, no I/O Shield, no Driver Disc's, Asus P8P67M-B-O-R (B3) $61, P8P67M-EVO $62 free shipping. Both have 1x ATA133 2 Devices Max.

    ATM newegg has the MSI H67A-G43 (B3) for $80 before $20 MIR
    ........................MSI H67MS-E43 (B3) for $90 before $20 MIR (probably much better)

    .......Asrock Z68M/USB3 $93
    .......Asus P8H67-M PRO/CSM (Rev3) $123 has 1xATA133 2 Device Max

    By most reports the Celeron G530 2.4 GHz ($53 or less) performs most tasks as well as the Pentium G620 2.5 GHz ($70+) for most things you would buy it for.
    Purpose and resolution would help.
    I am not a fan of the AMD A-series, but it might also be an option.

    mwave, superbiiz, ncix.us may be worth a look.

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    Honestly, he just wants to play minecraft (pretty low resolution, I'm guessing 1280x1024, but definitely not higher than 1440x900)... XD... that's probably the most strenuous activity this machine will see in the next few years. On that note, maybe even the HD 6850 is overkill for this machine, maybe a simple GT 520 will be good enough for MC...

    Thanks for the suggestions so far, I'm sure he's using a PATA drive so that P8P67M looks like it will hit the spot nicely..

    Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but P67 will allow me to bump up the multi a notch or two won't it?
    Last edited by buppus; 02-13-2012 at 01:39 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by buppus View Post
    Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but P67 will allow me to bump up the multi a notch or two won't it?
    Only for SandyB quad core CPUs.

    AMD A8-3870K + some 1866Mhz(or above) memory for minecraft.. or just wait a couple of months for IvyB or AMD Trinity.
    "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar" - Unknown (but sometimes attributed to Sigmund Freud)

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    Gotcha,

    Well, to me it appears the Intel option is actually cheaper and will get better graphics performance.. (though the A8 would definitely beat the Sandy Bridge's processing power by a good margin). It would be at least $200 just for the APU + Memory, not counting the mainboard yet.

    The intel offering I'm looking at now:
    *Celeron G530 2.4 GHz ($52) http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819116409
    *Asus P67 Mobo ($61) http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?inv...M-BO-R&cat=MBB
    *GT 520 ($25-35 after rebates)
    *8GB DDR3-1600 memory (~$45)

    Total: $183-193


    Of course, I could buy up that P67 board and wait for Ivy Bridge... do you expect a low-end Celeron offering within the first few weeks of the main release?

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    The GT520 is more a placebo than anything else, you'd be just as well off with the integrated GPU as with that joke of a GPU. Either dish out some more money for at least a HD 5670/6670, or save some money.
    Careful what you wish for... You just might get it.

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    for Minecraft?

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    This is more or less true. The GT 520 is worse than a GT430.

    You should find a Refurbished EVGA GT240 512 GDDR5 (i think) card at the EVGA STORE > PRODUCTS > B-STOCK at $40 plus shipping
    The GDDR3 GT240 is equivalent to an HD 5570.

    Superbiiz has a 15% off promotion thru 2/14/12, look at GT 5570/6570 or GT 430/440 start around $65 before $9.75 discount.

    Note: there are 64 bit and 128 versions of these cards, DDR2 and DDR3 memory.
    How much difference 64 vs 128 makes at this level I do not know.
    Roughly 512 mb DDR3 = 1 GB DDR2.

    FWIW I purchase a GT 520 and found the card disappointing even after rebate.
    Last edited by walterm; 02-13-2012 at 09:04 PM. Reason: um

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    Quote Originally Posted by buppus View Post
    Gotcha,

    Well, to me it appears the Intel option is actually cheaper and will get better graphics performance.. (though the A8 would definitely beat the Sandy Bridge's processing power by a good margin). It would be at least $200 just for the APU + Memory, not counting the mainboard yet.
    You're correct, I was under the false impression it would be considerably cheaper to go with the A8(haven't checked prices in a while).

    Quote Originally Posted by buppus View Post
    Of course, I could buy up that P67 board and wait for Ivy Bridge... do you expect a low-end Celeron offering within the first few weeks of the main release?
    I don't really expect a massive difference between the IvyB Celeron/Pentium CPUs and the current ones(on the CPU side, the IGP is a different story though), and I wouldn't bet on immediate(after launch) availability either.
    "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar" - Unknown (but sometimes attributed to Sigmund Freud)

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