Help with video card and processor, please!


The Seabat

Howdy: It's me again. Santa was good to me this Holiday so I'm fixing
to purchase my video card and my processor in a week or so. Need some
help deciding! Then I can start the daunting task of picking a new

First off, I'm going to get an AMD 64 CPU. I know, I know, dual core
is the future, but I just can't justify going that route. I don't
multi task at all. Hell, I have enough of a problem running just one
app at a time, much less several. For the same reason I'm going with a
Socket 939 instead of the AM2. Cheaper and I'm not planning on
upgrading. If it comes to that I will just build a new system many
years from now. I've narrowed it down to three chips.

Athlon 3500+ $74

Athlon 3700+ $75

Athlon 3800+ $82

Is .2GHz a big enough increase in processor speed to warrant the extra
$8.00 cost between the 3500+ and the 3800+?? Or is the 1MB L2 cache
clinch it for the 3700+ ? Or should I blow my wad on an Orleans core
3500+ socket AM2 even though dual core doesn't trip my trigger?

Also looking at PCI Express x16 video cards. Narrowed them down to
three. I'm not a gamer, just want a nice dependable video card. I play
Serious Sam once in a great while, but not fanatic about it. I'm kinda
looking for passive cooling because my new case, the Zorro
( has a
honkin' 120mm fan that I can position right over the vid card.

XFX 7300GT $90

Gigabyte 7300GT $82

XFX 7300GS $65

Basically it's between the first two, I just threw in the third one
'cause....well, I'm cheap! And twenty bucks is twenty bucks! Any
thoughts and/or suggestions on any of this will be received with
grateful thanks.

Mike T.

You can't go wrong with any of the processors you are considering, they are
all great. For about the same price, I'd just buy the 3800+ and be done
with it. All of those video cards look good, also. But consider going ebay
route for the video card, also. There are a ton of xfx brand 7600GS 256MB
PCI-Express video cards (brand new in box) currently for sale on ebay, many
of them from sellers with 100% feedback, at a "buy it now" price (including
shipping!) about the same as you are thinking of spending (before shipping).
It is a great card, also passively cooled. One example follows. Note this
is not my auction, and I'm in no way related to this auction, I'm just
throwing it in as an example: -Dave

Oh, and don't listen to all the idiots who will warn you against buying
computer components on ebay. Just like any ebay purchase, you'll do OK if
you are very familiar with what you are buying and watch the shipping
charges and the feedback ratings (lower than 99%, move on)

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