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cdifoto
03-22-2006, 07:02 AM
My computer dies. I don't know if it was the motherboard that went or just the power supply. Either way, I'm selling Bigma to buy something newer and upgraded. This sucks.

I just hope my hard drive is ok and I can use an adapter to read it externally (it should be fine...it didn't crash...it just won't power back up). :(

24Peter
03-22-2006, 08:35 AM
I built a new computer last October and for about $1400 I got:
- AOpen EZ482 XC Cube bare bones (case, power supply, mother board) http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=1526422&sku=A457-6008
- Athlon X2 dual core 3800+ 64
- 2 GB of really fast RAM
- two 300GB SATA Seagate HD
- dual layer multi-format DVD drive
- ATI Radeon x700 256MB video card
- Aopen 5.1 sound card
- Win XP Pro SP2

A month later I added a Dell 24" widescreen (1920X1200) monitor for $899. (The monitor pivots so I can view my photos in portrait orientation at 1920X1200 - awesome!)

The thing I like about the EZ482 is the small form factor (my last computer was a Shuttle). It's sits on top of my desk right next to the monitor. (It's about the size of a large toaster.) Also, unlike the Shuttle, the AOpen is nearly silent. It has a variable speed fan that occassionally kicks in during intensive processing but otherwise the hum from my sound card is louder than the comptuer.

You seem pretty computer savy. Have you considered building your own? The downside is you pretty much have to do your own tech support. The upside is you get to design your own system and save some money. And for me, the feeling of satisfaction when that thing first boots up is AMAZING. This is the second computer I've built and I'll never buy one pre-manufactured again. :D

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 09:13 AM
I built a new computer last October and for about $1400 I got:
- AOpen EZ482 XC Cube bare bones (case, power supply, mother board) http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/item-Details.asp?EdpNo=1526422&sku=A457-6008
- Athlon X2 dual core 3800+ 64
- 2 GB of really fast RAM
- two 300GB SATA Seagate HD
- dual layer multi-format DVD drive
- ATI Radeon x700 256MB video card
- Aopen 5.1 sound card
- Win XP Pro SP2

A month later I added a Dell 24" widescreen (1920X1200) monitor for $899. (The monitor pivots so I can view my photos in portrait orientation at 1920X1200 - awesome!)

The thing I like about the EZ482 is the small form factor (my last computer was a Shuttle). It's sits on top of my desk right next to the monitor. (It's about the size of a large toaster.) Also, unlike the Shuttle, the AOpen is nearly silent. It has a variable speed fan that occassionally kicks in during intensive processing but otherwise the hum from my sound card is louder than the comptuer.

You seem pretty computer savy. Have you considered building your own? The downside is you pretty much have to do your own tech support. The upside is you get to design your own system and save some money. And for me, the feeling of satisfaction when that thing first boots up is AMAZING. This is the second computer I've built and I'll never buy one pre-manufactured again. :D


I could and would build my own if I knew what components were compatible with each other. :)

Looking at what you bought and put together...it seems I can get what I need for just a touch over a grand. I already have 2 optical drives and some PCI cards I could reuse, and I believe my memory would still work fine. I wouldn't need a huge hard drive since I can use this old one (if it's any good) as an external storage device with an adapter, or just install it in the computer if there's room. I'll eventually get a 500GB or so external anyway for safe keeping.

So far I'm up to $1033 plus shipping. I de-emphasized audio since this thing will be primarly for photo editing and online order processing, not music. Chose a cheaper video card for the same reason. Single 300GB drive would be more than plenty for me.

Here's my cart so far. What else would I need? Anything?

AOpen EZ482 XC Cube Socket 939 Living Art Barebone (10 lbs)

Microsoft Windows XP Pro Edition OEM Version & Service Pack 2 (1.8 lbs)

Creative Labs SoundBlaster Live 24-Bit PCI Sound Card (Retail Box) (1 lbs)

Connect3D Radeon 9550se / 128MB DDR / AGP 8X / VGA / DVI / TV Out / Video Card (1 lbs)

Maxtor / DiamondMax 10 / 300GB / 7200 / 16MB / ATA-133 / EIDE / OEM / Hard Drive (2 lbs)

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ / 1MB Cache / 2000MHz FSB / Socket 939 / Dual-Core / Processor with Fan (1 lbs)

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 09:17 AM
Hmm I forgot memory. Thought I already added it. So much for barely over a grand.

24Peter
03-22-2006, 09:38 AM
I could and would build my own if I knew what components were compatible with each other. :)
Well these days almost all the stuff you'd put in a PC is compatible. You do want to make sure the RAM you get is compatible with the motherboard but other than that (see below) you should be fine.


Looking at what you bought and put together...it seems I can get what I need for just a touch over a grand. I already have 2 optical drives and some PCI cards I could reuse, and I believe my memory would still work fine.
Note that the EZ482 (and most small form factor cases) can only fit one optical drive (two or more hard drives but only one DVD drive.) The EZ482 also has one PCI express slot (fastest 16X - for the video card) and one old PCI slot. That's all they fit in there. So if you need more, then you need a bigger case.


I wouldn't need a huge hard drive since I can use this old one (if it's any good) as an external storage device with an adapter, or just install it in the computer if there's room. I'll eventually get a 500GB or so external anyway for safe keeping.
Well my system was set up for video editing - hence all the hard drive space (I also have 500GB of external drives for a total of 1.1TB of storage) (My other passion is filmmaking which I haven't really shared with you guys but will soon since I just finished shooting another short film and will be editing it over the next couple of months)


So far I'm up to $1033 plus shipping. I de-emphasized audio since this thing will be primarly for photo editing and online order processing, not music. Chose a cheaper video card for the same reason. Single 300GB drive would be more than plenty for me.

Here's my cart so far. What else would I need? Anything?

AOpen EZ482 XC Cube Socket 939 Living Art Barebone (10 lbs)

Microsoft Windows XP Pro Edition OEM Version & Service Pack 2 (1.8 lbs)

Creative Labs SoundBlaster Live 24-Bit PCI Sound Card (Retail Box) (1 lbs)

Connect3D Radeon 9550se / 128MB DDR / AGP 8X / VGA / DVI / TV Out / Video Card (1 lbs)

Maxtor / DiamondMax 10 / 300GB / 7200 / 16MB / ATA-133 / EIDE / OEM / Hard Drive (2 lbs)

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ / 1MB Cache / 2000MHz FSB / Socket 939 / Dual-Core / Processor with Fan (1 lbs)

Note - you CAN'T use the AGP video card as mentioned above. You'll need a PCIe card (most are these days anyway). (I'd also get at least 256MB of video RAM - not much more expensive and really helps with your photo editing.) That said, you can also add the video card and sound card later since the motherboard has both built in (the built-in video shares 64MB of RAM). In fact, the only reason I added the sound card ($12.95) was the on-board HD audio on my mother board had a glitch. You may not even need one. Also - you want a Serial ATA drive (SATA). Even though you can use the regular Ultra ATA drives, they use a wide ribbon cable that can restrict airflow (and thus cooling) in a small case. The SATA cables are much smaller. Finally, DON'T try to use the fan that ships with the processor. The mother board comes with a specially designed fan for that system.

Once you assemble the hardware, you'll need to install the operating system and drivers, plus you may want to update the bios (it's like a firmware update.) All are easy to do but time consuming (Win XP can take 40 minutes and several reboots to install.) (Then you have to install all your software which - in my case at least - can take days!)

My advice would be to go on line and search for some articles on building your own PC so you're sure you're up for it. Like I said the sense of satisfaction can be great. But it can also be really harrowing your first time out! :eek:

Also - check around for prices on stuff. TigerDirect is convenient 'cause they have everything but don't always have the best prices. I'd also check newegg.com since you won't pay sales tax.

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 09:56 AM
Well since there's a video and sound card both built in (not a primary need for me), I can get by with what's in it. I deleted both of those items.

As for memory, I just added 2GB of PC4200 DDR2 533 MHz Memory. How would I know whether or not that's compatible?

I'll probably go with a bigger tower since I have 2 PCI cards and 2 Optical drives I intend to use. One gives me 4 extra USB ports eliminating the need for a hub, and the other is a TV tuner/radio card. The latter isn't essential but it's fun. heh.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 10:24 AM
I think this site does a pretty god job at documenting how to build.
http://www.pcmech.com/byopc/

to understand what goes with what head over to pcworld and do some searches. . . Your Motherboard [MOBO] specs will tell you everything you need to know about whats compatible with it. Within the specs for the MOBO you'll find stuff like, the max speed of RAM it can handle, ie PC3200, or stuff like DDR400, it will tell you what kind of processor it will handle, in this case 939 - thats AMD, it will take any AMD processor with the 939 pin layout. It will also tell you what types of PCI card slots it has . . . it tells you everything you need to know about what hardware you should or could install.

Pete - Did you know you can purchase ribbon IDE cables that are rounded? like these

http://images10.newegg.com/NeweggImage/productimage/12-104-031-02.JPG

SATA drives are usually faster and are great for raid configs. . . and as you pointed out the connection technology is much easier and nicer!

Check out the resources here at PC world - they will educate you.
http://www.pcworld.com/howto/article/0,aid,114142,00.asp#

I've purchased thousands of dollars of stuff from both Tiger direct and Newegg and I much prefer new egg! Once you know you newegg!
http://www.newegg.com/

Good luck!

Ask away if you have any other questions. . .

The thing about it is this, you aren't going to be able to build anything cheaper than Dell. . . However, you'll get to put in it everything you want and nothing you don't! I'd price check all the componets in that barebones system, sometimes when you purchase those pieces individually, you'll save some money. . .

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 10:29 AM
Am I reading this wrong, or is there truly no video integrated into this barebones system?:

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1638821&CatId=0

Looks pretty sweet if there's at least integrated video. I could live with one optical drive (by adding my Lightscribe DVD burner) and just my USB PCI slot or an external hub....

No video means that single PCI would have to be dedicate to video...and that'd kinda suck.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 10:38 AM
Am I reading this wrong, or is there truly no video integrated into this barebones system?:

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1638821&CatId=0

Looks pretty sweet if there's at least integrated video. I could live with one optical drive (by adding my Lightscribe DVD burner) and just my USB PCI slot or an external hub....

No video means that single PCI would have to be dedicate to video...and that'd kinda suck.

Is this the same thing you're looking at ?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16856101471

I'm guessing the tiger direct one comes with a CPU?

NM I see Shuttle SN95G5v3 Socket 939 XPC Barebone Kit / AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ Manchester / 1024MB DDR PC3200 / Keyboard / Mouse / Free Copy of FarCry PC Game It comes with all of that. . .ok

According to Newegg that model does not have onboard graphics! switch over to newegg buddy, drop that nasty tiger!

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 10:44 AM
I'm tempted to say screw trying to build something and just go for this:

http://www.staples.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/StaplesProductDisplay?prodCatType=1&storeId=10001&catalogId=10051&langId=-1&productId=142210

If that link doesn't work, search the www.staples.com site for "Cisnet Dual Core CA-ST901 Desktop PC" after typing in my zip code 17257.

Rhys
03-22-2006, 10:48 AM
My computer dies. I don't know if it was the motherboard that went or just the power supply. Either way, I'm selling Bigma to buy something newer and upgraded. This sucks.

I just hope my hard drive is ok and I can use an adapter to read it externally (it should be fine...it didn't crash...it just won't power back up). :(

What happens when you turn the power on? Do the fans come on? It could be something less drastic that's needed. Computers are 100% fixable.

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 10:52 AM
What happens when you turn the power on? Do the fans come on? It could be something less drastic that's needed. Computers are 100% fixable.

It doesn't power on. I get a blinking light on my power supply and that's absolutely it. I'm looking to replace it because I can't afford (not financially) to have a ghetto computer hooked up that allows me no functionality in my business, and a decent one laying on the floor that I'm tinkering with.

Replacing the computer, despite the financial outlay, will be cheaper than trying to troubleshoot and *maybe* fix it.

The computer I'm on now just will not do. It won't. I can't even hook a printer up to it. That prevents me from printing packing slips, invoices, and shipping labels of ANY kind, which are at the core of my business.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 10:52 AM
What happens when you turn the power on? Do the fans come on? It could be something less drastic that's needed. Computers are 100% fixable.

This is very true. . . it could just be the power supply, 60 bucks.

Can you try switching the PSUs [powersupplies] between the two and see if that boots up your broken one?

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 11:22 AM
I don't know if it'd be sufficient. This old one only has a 100W supply.


I just dropped the computer off at a local repair shop. He said he'd look at it for me. Power supply would cost 40 bucks plus his "labor" for diagnosing and replacing. We'll see what happens. He should have equipment to test and find out what's what...power supplies to swap out, etc. that I don't have.


Let's hope & pray that's all it is cuz I lost the bid on that eBay one. Apparently someone else wanted it more than I did.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 11:31 AM
I don't know if it'd be sufficient. This old one only has a 100W supply.


I just dropped the computer off at a local repair shop. He said he'd look at it for me. Power supply would cost 40 bucks plus his "labor" for diagnosing and replacing. We'll see what happens. He should have equipment to test and find out what's what...power supplies to swap out, etc. that I don't have.


Let's hope & pray that's all it is cuz I lost the bid on that eBay one. Apparently someone else wanted it more than I did.

Well alrighty... hope it works out for ya at minimal expense!

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 11:35 AM
Well alrighty... hope it works out for ya at minimal expense!

Me too cuz I don't really want to sell Bigma just to get a stinkin computer. I will if I have to though.

Vich
03-22-2006, 11:42 AM
By "not powering on", what does that mean exactly? You get a light on the power supply, that's a start.

Does it do the same with your old monitor? Does the keyboard light up? Can you hear the hard disk? Is it possible that its a display card (or setting)?

Also; it is not unlikely that your old memory is incompatible with a new motherboard.

Lastly; you may be able to get a used computer for peanuts - its a consideration. I went that route last time and got a "refurbished" HP for about $500 on EBAY - no sales tax. I finally discovered what was wrong with it about 8 months later - the built in photo card reader was broken (I always use my external USB attached one). So I got a $1100 computer under full warranty for half price and it works great.

Rhys
03-22-2006, 11:54 AM
I'm tempted to say screw trying to build something and just go for this:

http://www.staples.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/StaplesProductDisplay?prodCatType=1&storeId=10001&catalogId=10051&langId=-1&productId=142210

If that link doesn't work, search the www.staples.com site for "Cisnet Dual Core CA-ST901 Desktop PC" after typing in my zip code 17257.

I have all that on my Compaq V2000 laptop!

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 12:14 PM
By "not powering on", what does that mean exactly? You get a light on the power supply, that's a start.

Does it do the same with your old monitor? Does the keyboard light up? Can you hear the hard disk? Is it possible that its a display card (or setting)?

Also; it is not unlikely that your old memory is incompatible with a new motherboard.

Lastly; you may be able to get a used computer for peanuts - its a consideration. I went that route last time and got a "refurbished" HP for about $500 on EBAY - no sales tax. I finally discovered what was wrong with it about 8 months later - the built in photo card reader was broken (I always use my external USB attached one). So I got a $1100 computer under full warranty for half price and it works great.


Not to sound rude, but I know it's none of that. The same memory and components have been in this thing for over a year. Only the DVD burner has changed recently but it never booted up with it installed, and still won't boot up without it installed. It doesn't do anything at all. I get a blinking power light but absolutely NOTHING else. It doesn't even react to the power button and that power light should be solid green, not blinking.

There's no reason to check it with my old monitor since it doesn't even react to hitting the power button. It never gets that far. It ran fine until I shut it down to install the new burner, even with the new monitor. It almost has to be either power supply or motherboard. Either way I have no idea what caused it because nothing changed between working and non-working except the DVD burner install.

Like I've said already. I dropped it off at a local shop and they said they'd look at it. I'm done troubleshooting it and even if it's something completely dumb, I'll let them find it.

D70FAN
03-22-2006, 12:23 PM
I really wish that we could physically help on this one. but putting together a new, high quality, good performing, computer is relatively easy and inexpensive.

An example:

MB+CPU (ASUS K8V-MX + Semperon 2800+)~$140
1GB (Infineon) PC3200 ~$100
300GB (Seagate) HDD ~$70 (after rebate)
Plextor PX740 DL DVD burner ~$100
Antec TX 635 case w/350W Power Supply ~$88 *
ASUS Radeon 9550 TD AGP 128MB Video Card ~$53

Total = $551 (+/- 10%)

* Note: I would probably change-out the 350W power supply (keep as a back-up) for the Antec TPII 480 (480 Watt) power supply for an extra $73.

Not, super high end gaming quality, but for business and photography it will get the job done right.

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 12:27 PM
I really wish that we could physically help on this one. but putting together a new, high quality, good performing, computer is relatively easy and inexpensive.

An example:

MB+CPU (ASUS K8V-MX + Semperon 2800+)~$140
1GB (Infineon) PC3200 ~$100
300GB (Seagate) HDD ~$70 (after rebate)
Plextor PX740 DL DVD burner ~$100
Antec TX 635 case w/350W Power Supply ~$88 *
ASUS Radeon 9550 TD AGP 128MB Video Card ~$53

Total = $551 (+/- 10%)

* Note: I would probably change-out the 350W power supply (keep as a back-up) for the Antec TPII 480 (480 Watt) power supply for an extra $73.

Not, super high end gaming quality, but for business and photography it will get the job done right.


I appreciate all your efforts and desire to help me out. I agree that I could get a smash bang nice desktop for virtually nothing IF I knew what I was doing 100%. I was even putting together all kinds of configurations on tigerdirect.com. heh. I may still go that way...even if I get this Compaq fixed. I could then spend time putting together something better and learning along the way.

Getting something together in a pinch is a different story, and why I'd be more apt to go to Staples and walk away with something I can plug in and get back to work.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 02:26 PM
Oh. thats interesting, maybe you mentioned that earlier and I missed it. But after you installed a DVD burner your computer wouldn't boot up? Could you have possibily unplug the power plug from the PSU to the mobo. . . sometimes those cables get a little tangled and pulling one sometimes tugs on another and unplugs it. . . I had something similar happen to me, it didn't unplug the power to the mobo, but it did pop off my usb headers and power button header on the mobo. . . LOL :D Hopefully you get a call from the tech guys and they say something was unplugged. . . :cool:

Rhys
03-22-2006, 02:36 PM
The worst that can have happened is that the mainboard, cpu and memory have been blown and will need to be replaced. Not a major expense or a major job. I remember using the old mainboards that had jumper settings everywhere. Modern boards are pretty well plug and play.

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 03:02 PM
Oh. thats interesting, maybe you mentioned that earlier and I missed it. But after you installed a DVD burner your computer wouldn't boot up? Could you have possibily unplug the power plug from the PSU to the mobo. . . sometimes those cables get a little tangled and pulling one sometimes tugs on another and unplugs it. . . I had something similar happen to me, it didn't unplug the power to the mobo, but it did pop off my usb headers and power button header on the mobo. . . LOL :D Hopefully you get a call from the tech guys and they say something was unplugged. . . :cool:

I double and triple checked all my plugs and the only ones I could see still being unplugged were those for another hard drive that I don't have. Everything else felt solid. I hope it's something stupid though. I'd rather feel dumb than spend a lot of money...mostly because I need studio lights yet and a computer's really gonna set me back even further from getting a set.

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 03:05 PM
The worst that can have happened is that the mainboard, cpu and memory have been blown and will need to be replaced. Not a major expense or a major job. I remember using the old mainboards that had jumper settings everywhere. Modern boards are pretty well plug and play.

And for $800 I can walk out of a store with an upgraded replacement (dual-core ~3Ghz processor, more memory, fresh warranty, etc). A 3-4 year old computer isn't worth replacing all that stuff, not to mention being without a computer that's fully functional for my daily tasks. I can't seem to emphasize that enough. Being without is more costly than the minimal savings on repairs.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 03:17 PM
And for $800 I can walk out of a store with an upgraded replacement (dual-core ~3Ghz processor, more memory, fresh warranty, etc). A 3-4 year old computer isn't worth replacing all that stuff, not to mention being without a computer that's fully functional for my daily tasks. I can't seem to emphasize that enough. Being without is more costly than the minimal savings on repairs.

Thats cool Don. I think we understand. You gotta do what you need to get back up and running. If the emphasis is on minimum down time then we can't blame you for going out and buying something if it means you are back up and running within a day.

D70FAN
03-22-2006, 04:28 PM
I appreciate all your efforts and desire to help me out. I agree that I could get a smash bang nice desktop for virtually nothing IF I knew what I was doing 100%. I was even putting together all kinds of configurations on tigerdirect.com. heh. I may still go that way...even if I get this Compaq fixed. I could then spend time putting together something better and learning along the way.

Getting something together in a pinch is a different story, and why I'd be more apt to go to Staples and walk away with something I can plug in and get back to work.

Yeah. Even though I "roll-my-own" I can see why people would just as soon spend $600 on a HP/Compaq/Dell prefab from Staples. Quick, easy, OS loaded and guaranteed.

Just thought I would throw the itemized list out there, in case you felt ambitious.

Have you considered a mid range laptop? There are several around from HP/Compaq, and Dell with 15 inch WXGA screens and fairly fast AMD processors for around $800. I was looking at one last weekend and have been thinking about this route myself to replace my old 10 inch Pentium 850 Twinhead. Great little computer, but a little long in the tooth:) Since the new ones offer built-in Gbit ethernet, "g" wi-fi, and a couple of USB2.0 ports I'd be good to go.

Anyway, good hunting.

24Peter
03-22-2006, 07:14 PM
Have you considered a mid range laptop?
Yeah, that was my strategy too. A couple of years ago my main desktop computer went out and I decided a laptop would be a good idea for backup. I've had both a desktop and laptop ever since. I take the laptop when I travel plus it's great to be able to cruise around the homestead with WiFi. I got one of these from Staples last year for $999

http://www.averatec.com/notebooks/4200series.htm

And Microsoft recently released SyncToy (ironically for photographers to move photos between drives/computers) so now you can have a complete backup synchronized between the laptop and desktop. This way if one goes down I never miss a beat.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=e0fc1154-c975-4814-9649-cce41af06eb7&DisplayLang=en

D70FAN
03-22-2006, 09:04 PM
Yeah, that was my strategy too. A couple of years ago my main desktop computer went out and I decided a laptop would be a good idea for backup. I've had both a desktop and laptop ever since. I take the laptop when I travel plus it's great to be able to cruise around the homestead with WiFi. I got one of these from Staples last year for $999

http://www.averatec.com/notebooks/4200series.htm

And Microsoft recently released SyncToy (ironically for photographers to move photos between drives/computers) so now you can have a complete backup synchronized between the laptop and desktop. This way if one goes down I never miss a beat.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=e0fc1154-c975-4814-9649-cce41af06eb7&DisplayLang=en

Don't forget traveling with DivX movies. Japan is 12 hours (5 movies) away...;) China is 14 hours (for me).

Bluedog
03-22-2006, 09:24 PM
I'll have to side with Andy on quite possibly being the PSU. I've fixed a couple for friends that all of sudden wouldn't power up, of course a new PSU was needed though.

cdifoto
03-22-2006, 09:57 PM
I'll have to side with Andy on quite possibly being the PSU. I've fixed a couple for friends that all of sudden wouldn't power up, of course a new PSU was needed though.

I'm thinking (and hoping) that's what it is. It's too dead too sudden to be much else. Most other problems show warning signs.

Bluedog
03-22-2006, 10:48 PM
The PSU's that manufactures use are extremely cheap made.

I've built my last three rigs without any problems but its generally not cheaper than a store bought setup but at least you have a piece of mind knowing the parts being used are of some quality.

aparmley
03-22-2006, 11:42 PM
I've built my last three rigs without any problems but its generally not cheaper than a store bought setup but at least you have a piece of mind knowing the parts being used are of some quality.

And thats the kicker right there. Yea, The PSUs I use are around 95-115 bucks a piece. . . [Dell has a computer for $299. . . ] Sure, one could go out there and build a cheapest route possible, you'll be using the same PSUs dell/HP/Gateway uses, the little 25 dollar guys. . . No wonder they blow out after a year or two - Thats the plan! When the consumers aren't educated on the inner workings of your product, life is great, they'll buy another one! LOL . . . You should make it a point to build your own one day. . . It really is super easy and once you know all your components, you get to know whats going on fairly easy. . . The registry is another monster. . . staying abreast the newer generations of components is a challenge at times. . . but once you lay down your foundation knowledge about core components its all pretty much gravy after that. I can't wait to build my dream rig - Thats on hold until I get a few others I want. . . an apple is one of them. . . Maybe I'll never need to build my dream rig after trying apple, which will be good cause thats more glass money! =)

cdifoto
03-23-2006, 12:08 AM
Yeah ideally I would (and will eventually) build my own but this isn't exactly an ideal time.

aparmley
03-23-2006, 01:20 AM
Yeah ideally I would (and will eventually) build my own but this isn't exactly an ideal time.

Knowing that it is or isn't the time is half the battle. Some people never know what time it is! ;)

cdifoto
03-23-2006, 01:42 AM
Knowing that it is or isn't the time is half the battle. Some people never know what time it is! ;)

Yeah I'm figuring what I'll do is buy the Staples one I linked to if this one can't be fixed on the cheap (an overhaul would be pointless on a comp this old), then instead of always looking for the next lens, start to build a custom job.

I've never done it before, so doing it while I'm learning and at the same time under pressure to get something up and running as quickly as possible can only lead to frustration.

cdifoto
03-23-2006, 10:51 AM
Damn good news. It WAS my power supply. The tech is on the hunt for one (says he doesnt have one on hand) and so am I.

Any brand/model recommendations for a 350-400W jobby? Preferably under $100 please! :D

EDIT: Nevermind. Staples has 350W on sale for $40. Tech's gonna put it in for me for $15.

acpryor
03-23-2006, 02:01 PM
Damn good news. It WAS my power supply. The tech is on the hunt for one (says he doesnt have one on hand) and so am I.

Any brand/model recommendations for a 350-400W jobby? Preferably under $100 please! :D

EDIT: Nevermind. Staples has 350W on sale for $40. Tech's gonna put it in for me for $15.

Yep... CoolerMaster....

Read:
5 Power Supplies Get the Full Juice Treatment (http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/02/07/5_power_supplies_get_the_full_juice_treatment/)

Rhys
03-23-2006, 02:22 PM
There... wasn't that cheaper than a new PC.

Of course, if you're like me, you upgrade and put the old computer in the closet. When something blows, the old might be slow but it'll carry you through until you fix the new one.

aparmley
03-23-2006, 02:44 PM
Yep... CoolerMaster....

Read:
5 Power Supplies Get the Full Juice Treatment (http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/02/07/5_power_supplies_get_the_full_juice_treatment/)

CoolerMaster gets good reviews. . .
Antec's are good; - What I use, never had a problem with those. . .
Thermaltakes are good as well. . If you need something around 350 - I'd go for a 400-450 watter - better to have too much.

But thats good news. . . overnight one from newegg and get back up and running. . .

cdifoto
03-23-2006, 02:59 PM
I'm back up and running. Actually been for about 2 hours now. New burner is installed and fully operational to boot. 63 bucks and change later... sure beats a new PC or replacement tower.

Now I can start to work on a custom built jobby at my leisure. :)

Bluedog
03-23-2006, 03:09 PM
Damn good news. It WAS my power supply.

Kudos to Andy and Toney ... :D

Don I'm glad for you and for normal computing the one at Staples should be better than the OEM junk that was in there. And good job on the tech guy not trying to rip you off.

aparmley
03-23-2006, 04:14 PM
Kudos to Andy and Toney ... :D

Don I'm glad for you and for normal computing the one at Staples should be better than the OEM junk that was in there. And good job on the tech guy not trying to rip you off.

It was a team effort starting with Rhys getting us on track. . . "Probably something totally fixable."

Glad he is back up and running. . .

cdifoto
03-23-2006, 04:20 PM
I gotta thank everyone from the folks helping me not go insane on the slow computer to those who helped me figure out what I'd need/want in a custom computer to Rhys and others who reminded me that it could be totally fixable.

I'm glad I took it into the tech guy after all. Had a feeling may have been the PSU...but without another to try on it I couldn't be certain. I didn't want to blow money on one only to find out the mobo went bad.

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it! :D

24Peter
03-23-2006, 04:22 PM
Good work Don. (It was a dead power supply in my last computer that prompted me to build my new one.) Definitely better to undertake construction while you're not under duress. :)

aparmley
03-23-2006, 04:33 PM
(It was a dead power supply in my last computer that prompted me to build my new one.)

LOL - thats funny - coincidentally, When my girlfriends old Gateway computer's PSU failed one day about 2.5 years ago, thats what got me to starting building my rigs too. . . ;) it was a 100W PSU too. . . 256 RAM Windows ME -Aah! what a joke of an OS.

Rhys
03-23-2006, 05:00 PM
LOL - thats funny - coincidentally, When my girlfriends old Gateway computer's PSU failed one day about 2.5 years ago, thats what got me to starting building my rigs too. . . ;) it was a 100W PSU too. . . 256 RAM Windows ME -Aah! what a joke of an OS.

I had my first PC and rebuilt it several times over the 7 years I used it. Then I built a server (by accident) and then a decent PC. The server would have been my new PC but for the fact the case was too tall for the space (it had 11 drive bays). That had two raid sets of 40GB drives, CD reader, 1.7Ghz CPU, floppy drive, built-in sound and graphics and 256mb ram. I ran SME Linux on that. My PC had 512MB ram, 2.4GHZ CPU, XP Pro, 3.5" floppy, LS-120, CD reader-writer, DVD reader-writer, built-in sound and graphics and an LCD monitor.

Since then, I find XP to be flakey - not as bad as Win 9X but it's still flakey. My wife's XP Pro laptop is beginning to show signs of XP flakiness. My laptop is beginning to show it. My PC is showing it too.

I'd have had a Mac laptop if it wasn't for the fact that Apple is switching over at the moment.

I'm looking into using The Gimp. If I can get that working well for me then I might just dump Windows and use Linux instead. At least it has no registry to get screwed-up by a virus!

aparmley
03-23-2006, 05:07 PM
I had my first PC and rebuilt it several times over the 7 years I used it. Then I built a server (by accident) and then a decent PC. The server would have been my new PC but for the fact the case was too tall for the space (it had 11 drive bays). That had two raid sets of 40GB drives, CD reader, 1.7Ghz CPU, floppy drive, built-in sound and graphics and 256mb ram. I ran SME Linux on that. My PC had 512MB ram, 2.4GHZ CPU, XP Pro, 3.5" floppy, LS-120, CD reader-writer, DVD reader-writer, built-in sound and graphics and an LCD monitor.

Since then, I find XP to be flakey - not as bad as Win 9X but it's still flakey. My wife's XP Pro laptop is beginning to show signs of XP flakiness. My laptop is beginning to show it. My PC is showing it too.

My XP flakiness manifests itself into this: On all three of my XP machines my external harddrive and my card reader sometimes shows up when I plug them in and other times they wont. I'll have to reboot in order to fix the problem if they don't pop up. Everytime I plug either device in I get that new hardware beep - but in explorer/my computer the device or devices are not there. . . and I can't access them. Photoshop always sees them if I want to open a file via the file|open menu in photoshop. But other than that I can't see my external devices most of the time. Its a PIA.

But those are the only flakiness' I have. . . I annually reinstall my OSes though to keep the registry from being a wasteland of crap.

Looking forward to being able to get a mac someday. . .

D70FAN
03-23-2006, 05:13 PM
Good news. Glad it was just the PS.:)

cdifoto
03-23-2006, 05:28 PM
Good news. Glad it was just the PS.:)

I think my bank account and Bigma are the most thankful of all. :eek: :D

Rhys
03-23-2006, 06:11 PM
My XP flakiness manifests itself into this: On all three of my XP machines my external harddrive and my card reader sometimes shows up when I plug them in and other times they wont. I'll have to reboot in order to fix the problem if they don't pop up. Everytime I plug either device in I get that new hardware beep - but in explorer/my computer the device or devices are not there. . . and I can't access them. Photoshop always sees them if I want to open a file via the file|open menu in photoshop. But other than that I can't see my external devices most of the time. Its a PIA.

But those are the only flakiness' I have. . . I annually reinstall my OSes though to keep the registry from being a wasteland of crap.

Looking forward to being able to get a mac someday. . .

If my Compaq had come with the OS not pre-installed then I would have partitioned the hard drive and put all my data on the secondary partition. I'd also have found out how to put the desktop and my documents on the partition too.

My flakiness is toolbar icons not appearing (randomly) and not being visible when I expand the toolbar. Internet connection via wifi used to be good until I had a virus that Norton let through and then fixed after I told Norton to do a manual scan. AVG doesn't do that - AVG stops all viruses dead. Now even though the connection might be excellent, it's slow but after an hour or so, begins to speed up. I've downloaded The Gimp and its runtime environment in the hope that I can get used to it and find it worthwhile. If that's the case, I might save all my stuff to DVD and load Linux onto my system instead.

My wife's laptop has services that just hang on shutdown. Picture viewer doesn't work properly either.

I trawl through the registry with Norton WinDoctor but I fear that it causes problems as well as solving them under XP and ME. Win 98 was always better for Norton's usage.