Building a Computer for my Girlfriend

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by BeakerMan, Feb 12, 2005.

  1. BeakerMan

    BeakerMan Member Guru

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    I have no idea what to get my girlfriend for valentines. I was going to get her a necklace or something but that will be for our 2 year anniversery. She wants to go to college for graphics design but she has a POS computer so she has no experience in Photoshop and what not. She has wanted a new computer so I think im going to build her one. I don’t want to spend too much money but enough for her to easily run programs like Photoshop. What would you guys recommend for motherboard, CPU, Ram, and video card? I’m not sure how much I want to spend but if I can get her a pretty good computer (No monitor, keyboard, or anything else) for 400-500 then ill be happy. Quick replies would be great.

    -Blake
     
  2. Mark

    Mark Ancient Guru

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    athlon 2500+
    AMD 9550pro
    512 DDR 400 ram
    Maxtor diamomdmax +9 120gig

    That should do u nicely
     
  3. dominant1

    dominant1 Ancient Guru

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    give her your current pc and build your future pc.....for yourself.
     
  4. Mark

    Mark Ancient Guru

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    yeah i agree
     

  5. Atomic

    Atomic Guest

    Though you might want to change the case so she doesnt know ;)
     
  6. Jw_Leonhart

    Jw_Leonhart Ancient Guru

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    I would recommend getting something like..

    AMD Sempron 2500+ -$75
    Asus A7N8X-X Motherboard -$65
    Kingston 512MB of RAM PC-3200 - $65 (one stick would be fine for this as the motherboard doesn't support dual-channel)
    Western Digital 120GB Hard Drive w/2mb Cache -$76
    Albatron GeforceFX 5500 - $70

    That puts you at $351, just need to fill in the case/psu and a keyboard/mouse and speakers if you want them. I've only had experience with more expensive cases so perhaps someone else could fill you in on a case that would be good and has a decent PSU for a cheap price.
     
  7. BeakerMan

    BeakerMan Member Guru

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    The computer in my profile is my fathers. I could give it to her but then my dad would have to use my computer all the time and I dont want that. Ill have plenty of money to build both computers.
     
  8. Jw_Leonhart

    Jw_Leonhart Ancient Guru

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    Oh sorry you'll also need a CD-Drive. I believe a CD-Burner/DVD read combo drive is something like $35 bucks these days, Samsung makes some good ones, check them out. by the way all those prices are through NewEgg.com
     
  9. nm+

    nm+ Don Cappuccino Staff Member

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    I can't price it out atm, but I'd imagine you could get a machine similar to mine with like a 9600pro for around 500. Girls love the shuttle box.
    Oh and if its graphics design, you want a lotta memory. Photoshop sucks ram, 1GB+.
    Oh hell, I'll even price it (newegg):
    SN45GV2 (case, nforce2 ultra 400 (with soundstorm), high-quality (low watt) PSU -- can power anything, all cables) $204
    OEM Barton 2500+ (shuttle comes with HSF) $75 (If she/you want to oc, the mobile is $88)
    OEM WD 80GB 8MB Cache -- $56
    Lite-On CD-RW/DVD-ROM SOHC-5235K $36
    MSI 9600 pro 128MB - $104 (If she's only 2D, you could lower this and save some cash)
    2xMushkin 512 (2.5 CAS)-- $136 (quality memory cheaper than some generics).

    $611
    Ok, thats too much.
    You could lower to a sempron 2200+ -- $48 (save $27)
    ASUS 9550 -- $65 (save $39)
    and you got $545
    Still might be a bit pricy, but it'll be unique, esp compared to her fellow students dells and overpower thier mac minis (and rather quiet, esp if you spring for a nice $10 quiet fan).
    Either that or use a similar config, get a cheapish but nice case with a truepower 380. Save some cash.
    And 1GB of RAM is basically a requirement for serious photoshop use!
     
  10. Jw_Leonhart

    Jw_Leonhart Ancient Guru

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    I have to disagree nm+. My friend uses Photoshop, Premiere Pro and Sony Vegas 4.0 (which are Video Editing programs) and has no problem running them on 512MB of ram. Photoshop never takes up alot of ram for me either, right now with it running it is only taking up 65MB of memory.
     

  11. BeakerMan

    BeakerMan Member Guru

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    I dont think that she will need 1gig of ram but I do like nm+ idea about the shuttle barebone. She will like the compact size and it will be very portable.
     
  12. Jw_Leonhart

    Jw_Leonhart Ancient Guru

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    Don't get me wrong it's a very nice case but the price makes that a little hard. Figure that the shuttle case like he said is $204.... Compared to a standard case/mobo which would cost maybe $100-120 or so together really skyrockets the price.
     
  13. BeakerMan

    BeakerMan Member Guru

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    Ill have to talk to my girlfriend. Im not just going to build her a computer and not get input from her as to what she wants. I mentioned the idea about a month ago to her and she even said that her parents might help me pay for it because there family computer isnt very good.
     
  14. Jw_Leonhart

    Jw_Leonhart Ancient Guru

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    Well in that case I would just take the cpu/ram/hard-drive/video card into account for when you build the PC. The GeforceFX 5500 isn't a terribly fast card but it can play games most games alright and it doesn't strain the budget at all either. I don't know much about ATi cards but there might be one comparable, perhaps the one nm+ suggested.
     
  15. BeakerMan

    BeakerMan Member Guru

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    Im going to talk to her tonight and see what she wants. As for graphics design would intel or amd be better? Also how big of an importance is the graphics card when dealing with photoshop and other editing programs.
     

  16. Jw_Leonhart

    Jw_Leonhart Ancient Guru

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    In these days either is really fine. The sheer speed intel has would make a difference, but the difference would be so marginal that for the price it would be worth it... We are talking about 1 second of a difference, that is how small it is. Stick with the AMD setup, it will help to save money.

    Also, another suggestion I have is to look at the Sempron 3100+ which is for Socket 754. I just got one for my little cousin. I gotta say that sucker is pretty darn fast.
     
  17. DrFreeze

    DrFreeze Ancient Guru

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    yeah, pick up a socket A shuttle barebone for 200 or something, put a nice sempron in there (rule of thumb, take the sempron rating, lower it by 400, and you got yourself a Athlon rating, my 2400 runs the exact same clock as a XP 2000) add 512 ram, look for a nice vid card, something like mine (got mine for 100 bucks a few weeks ago) and your set, that way she can also play some games if she wants to
     
  18. BeakerMan

    BeakerMan Member Guru

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    Im almost positive thats what im going to do for her. If her or her parents pool some money together we can easily make her a real nice computer.
     
  19. Daimerous

    Daimerous Master Guru

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  20. nm+

    nm+ Don Cappuccino Staff Member

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    How much does this friend use photoshop.
    Cause a couple of huge images will take me way over 512MB.
    I guess you could just get a stick of 512 and upgrade if needed.
     

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