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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,


My PII 450 was best in class, when PII 450 was the fastest processor out. In any case, I'm looking to get a new motherboard, RAM, and CPU. In fact, I'd like to get a bare bones system and get Windows XP thrown in.


One of the problems is that my old system was all SCSI:


Ultra-2 SCSI Cheetah (9 gig)

Pioneer SCSI DVD

Plextor 8/20 CDR


And I think I can salvage:


Hercules 3D prophet, which isn;t the latest, but it is decent.

Zip Drive

21 inch Hitachi Superscan 814 monitor.



In any case, I guess I have to get a SCSI card. I had an ASUS P2B-S with integrated Adaptec ULTRA-2 SCSI. Now it seems that SCSI is even less of the market share than when I last looked a couple of years ago.


I was thinking of getting this so far:


ASUS P4T motherboard

256 or 512 k of ???? RAM (any ideas?)

and a 1.7 gHz P4 (just because I don't see much diff between 1.7 and 2.0 for the price).


I usually use www.aberdeeninc.com when getting a minimum type of system. For individual parts I use the usual pricewatch.


If anyone has any suggestions for a solid bare bones system, as well as a way to integrate the SCSI components cost effectively, please let me know. I'd appreciate any comments on what to do about the SCSI components I have as well. This system is just getting corrupt and slow and I need to have something worthwhile to invest re-installing my software onto.


Thanks,


Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I've decided that the best thing to do is to get a new MB, processor, RAM, and a SCSI card.


If anyone can give a suggestion on their choice of those items, please let me know your current favorie choice for:


MB = ?

Processor = ?

RAM = ?


Suggestions on where to buy and brand appreciated.
 

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PIII 450, 128MB, PCI SB w/digital out, UDMA33 8x DVD-ROM. Does the job and won't break your pocketbook. For DVD playback I don't see the point in having a super power house computer. Just get the essentials and have a dedicated HTPC vs. getting a new computer and having to share it as an HTPC and for other uses. I would say built from scratch if you have before because you can have tighter control of what your HTPC has. Such as not a real big HD, no floppy drive, no network card. Another option is to get a used name-brand PIII w/DVD-ROM drive. Maybe one of those really small mini-towers or even a desktop.
 

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Since you mention a P4T, I would go with the P4T-E motherboard instead of a P4T. Get a 1.6 Mhz socket 478 P4 now, which will be plenty of processing power for what you need. In a year or so you can upgrade the CPU to a 2.5+ Mhz northwood processor (which besides being faster will have a larger on chip cache, etc).


The P4T-E is avaliable now at googlegear and other places.


BTW, now adays IDE hard disk drives are fast, cheap, and quiet (in case noise is an issue w/the cheetah). Something to consider, since 9 gig ain't what it used to be.


Warning...I haven't put a P4 together myself yet...I'm just thinking about it for now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank-you for saving me from getting the P4-T. It would be really nice to upgrade to perhaps a 3.0 GHZ processor in a couple of years and perhaps squeeze another year or two out the computer. I got burned in a similar manner because I bought the early version of the ASUS P2B motherboard, which later P2B motherboard versions could support a PIII 800, while my P2B could could not.


I'm running into a problem finding an affordable SCSI card. I can't believe that they are $400.00 for a simple Ultra-2 SCSI card. That is crazy! I don't need the latest and greatest SCSI card... any ideas? My Plextor CDR, Cheetah, and DVD player are all SCSI. SCSI is no longer worth the price of admission it seems. I had the P2B-S motherboard which had integrated Adaptek SCSI controller on board, so I seem to be stuck!!!


Now it seems I need a CASE because P4 requires a new case. I also want to get XP. Argh. $400.00 just to make use of my SCSI HD and peripherals. Ideas? I'm stuck on getting a P4-TE with a 1.6 gHz and (256?) MB RAMBUS memory.... That part I'm sure on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How do these prices and choices sound?


GOOGLE GEAR:


ANTEC SX1240 CASE (400W) 142.99

Asus P4T-E MB 173.00

Rambus 512 MB 174.00

P4 1.5 gHz CPU 154.00

ACARD SCSI adapter 80.99


(salvage old peripherals)

Opinions?
 

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I'd go the AMD route myself.

I also have an all SCSI system and it runs great. AMD is also less expensive and a better performer then the P4.


Shuttle AK31 Revision 3.1 (VIA KT266A) -MB- $85

PC2100 DDR 512 -memory- $54

ACARD SCSI adapter 80.99

ANTEC SX1240 CASE 142.99

Athlon XP 1500 -CPU- 138.99 Retail version


Jim
 

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I'm not sure, but I THINK the P4T-E can get by with a regular ATX case, but a new (ATX 2.03) power supply is a good idea. You may also be able to get by with an older ATX 2.01 power supply if you don't stuff too much memory on it.




On AMD vrs Intel P4: No question the AMD will outperform the intel on most applications. Toms Hardware just did a good article on this. I've tended to shy away from AMD in the past because of compatability issues: Motherboards with Intel chipsets are more stable and less of a headache. Be aware, the above statements are fighting words!
 

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I second the AMD suggestion. I have both a ASUS A7V133 and the older A7V and both work flawlessly with win2k. I also have a SCSI system and have had good results with a Tekram card. Be sure to get a card with the BIOS on it or you will not be able to boot from the SCSI devices!

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Here is what I ended up ordering last night:




ORDER CONTENT:


1 x (370401) Thermaltake P4 Volcano 478 Cooling Fan for 478-pin P4 Retail @ $12.99


2 x (80455-K) Kingston RAMBUS 256MB 800MHz Memory @ $89.


1 x (240226) Asus P4T-E i850 P4 Skt 478 RDRAM ATX Motherboard Retail @ $173.


1 x (703604-PAM) Adaptec CTAD29160 29160 ULTRA 160 SCSI ADATER @ $206.


1 x (80626-478) Intel P4: 1.6GHz, 400Mhz FSB, Socket 478 (No SDRAM Memory) @ $167.


1 x (604614) Microsoft N09-00342 Windows XP Home Edition Single @ $92.


------------------------------

SUBTOTAL : $828.99

SALESTAX : $0.00

SHIPPING : $53.05

TOTAL : $882.04




INTELLIMOUSE EXPLORER 3.01.


Item Name: Lian Li Aluminum PC-60USB Mid Tower ATX Case

Item Number: PI160130

Quantity: 1

Subtotal: $149.00

Shipping: $25.00

Total: $174.00



Item Name: SH 365Watt P4 Dual-Fans Power Supply

Item Number: PI160203

Quantity: 1

Subtotal: $39.95

Shipping: $6.95

Total: $46.90



Thank-you for suggesting GOOGLEGEAR.COM... That made everything possible. Then I found a good deal on that nice aluminum case.


I'll use my older SCSI CHEETAH drive, 3D prophet, 21 inch monitor, SCSI DVD, Plextor SCS!, Floppy, Zip Drive, SBLive, Modem, etc.... from my older P.C. This worked out VERY WELL! Thank-you very much. Now I know I can upgrade the other items at my own pace and make the most out of what I have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Wow, now that I actually have a respectable computer again, would anyone mind recommending a couple computer games as well as where to buy them?


I used to buy computer games from Chips and Bits in Vermont, but that was two years or so ago. I'm sure there is a place with better discounts? (That Googlegear was sweeeeet!!! Thanks again).


The last computer game I played was Baulder's gate. So little time these days, and most spare time goes to watch a movie and go to the gym. Oh yeah, then I am supposed to study 2 hours a night after working 100 hours a week. Nontheless, I have to play a couple games! Those RPG can be real time killers. Next thing you know you've lost your girlfriend, your job, and your health ;)
 
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