View Full Version : Built "Entry Level" System for a female friend... Did I make ok choices?

09-13-03, 09:03 PM
My friend Darla got a pc like 2 yrs ago, a Compaq Presario Celly 566 with 64mb SDRAM, a 10gb HD, a CDROM and integrated gfx... She enjoyed it as much as she could, but being the cool girl that she is, she pined for a system that could at least do SOME gaming...

So she tossed me $200 for parts and labor, and asked for a cooler setup...

Now, mind you, she's keeping her 15" moinitor, so she's satisfied with 8x6 and 10x7 for games... and she wnted to keep her 10gb HD (she's gettin a bigger one later)...

Here's what I built:

ECS K7VZA mobo (kt133a, not OC'able)
XP1600+ Palomino CPU
Decent HSF
256mb PC133 RAM
Geforce2 ti with better than stock HSF, clocked @ 262/450
10gb 5400rpm ATA-66 HD
Integrated sound
56k v92modem
Netgear 10/100 NIC
BenQ 52x24x52 CDRW
Sony floppy drive
XCase 400W PSU
White Windowed Case with front USB from www.amamax.com
4 color LED 80mm window fan
A couple regular 80mm fans


I loaded XP on it for her, and have put a few demos on there that would run good on that setup, like:

XIII (runs suprisingly GREAT on this setup!!)
Will Rock

And, to boot, I tossed StarOffice 6.1 Beta on here so she could have some productivity apps as well...

For now, she's gonna archive (burn) most of her music so she doesn't take up too much HD space, as thet right now is the weakest point of the whole setup...

She already has a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and decent JBL audio speakers...

So... do y'all think this is a decent "entry level" setup, a decent step up from a Celly 566, an OK entry into more serious gaming?

I was *ALMOST* able to swing a DDR mobo and RAM, but the mobo I had turned out to be broke... poop... oh well.

Gimme some input. I think she'll be happy, and IMO this is a great DX7 setup... heck, I even think UT2K3 will run ok on this...

and btw, if anyone knows how to get this mobo to OC, lemme know... better bandwidth would be nice...


09-13-03, 09:10 PM
Most excellent with the budget you had and what you started with! My only criticism would be to add another 256MB of RAM if you can since you're running XP. (Yeah, I'm still old skool 98se for the most part....I just like it better and it tends to run better on lower-end stuff. ;) )

The Baron
09-13-03, 09:40 PM
Yeah, ditto on what Dig said. 512 megs on XP feels a lot nicer than 256. Plus, 10 gigs? That's what, three games?

09-13-03, 10:05 PM
I'm makin sure she sticks with demos until she shells out for a bigger HD...

She's gotta do school stuff on it as well, but she stressed gaming ability...

I'll post some pics in the next couple days...

09-13-03, 10:12 PM
Originally posted by The Baron
Yeah, ditto on what Dig said. 512 megs on XP feels a lot nicer than 256. Plus, 10 gigs? That's what, three games?
I got a lousy 3.2Gb pokey-as-f-word old Seagate in Blue right now 'til I can talk the wife into a replacement.... (I've been losing too many harddrives lately! :rolleyes: )

09-15-03, 12:20 AM
Thats a good Value system, 200 is not much to work with imho.

You did a good job of finding those values though!

however, last time i checked winxp was 200$ *cough cough*

09-15-03, 06:51 AM
That's a nice little setup for the price :)

Is she hot?

09-15-03, 07:08 AM
I removed the Will Rock demo due to it's shaky mouse control, and replaced it with the Chaser Demo, which runs a lot smoother (10x7, no AA/AF)...

I narrowed the selection to 3 demos, and now it's Chaser, SOF2, and XIII... I might just replace SOF2 with UT2k3 demo...

I got the dig., camera last nite, so I'll post some pics later today...

09-15-03, 05:30 PM
here's a grainy pic...


Yeh, the case was only $24 plus shipping, and it's not of that bad of construction... I had to paint the drive faces, and it turned out okay... It looks nice and clean... (well, not among all my crap :p )

All I have left to do is hook the front usb audio jacks up and put a couple more fans in it...

... I'm sad to see my backup GF2ti go though... meh... oh well, that just means my GF3 will be my backup (once it's repaired... voltage regulator pin broke... I sampled 5 new V. Reg's in from a Binghamton NY distributor though...)