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Thread: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

  1. #1
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    Jun 2010
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    Post $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    Hi, I am a disenfranchised Apple user. I became such after becoming a disenfranchised Windows user. Linux is the way of the future. With that said I'm ready to start making the switch.
    I need to start building a computer. I built computers in latter middle school early high school and used to game on a lot of them. I found my old rig I built freshman year and have already looked into finishing it but the hardware is over 5 years old! To give you an idea of my old rig, it uses DDR400, Pentium 4 478pin 800MHz FSB, AGP8x, and IDE drives, although I can install some SATA drives but they would be the first generation of such, 1.5GBs transfer rate I believe.

    All my computer building stopped after I bought a Powerbook those 5 years ago and have used it ever since, forgetting about gaming and computer building and focusing on making music and using the Mac for Garageband and the internet. Well, Apple has become a cult in my opinion, and they are currently under investigation for anti-trust laws with their new iAd business and cutting Flash out of the picture. Dissatisfaction and Disenfranchised.

    I've been out of the computer building game for a looong time obviously and have some ideas on how to start building a new rig, but not-so-much when it comes to Linux, Ubuntu obviously. I remember that back when Redhat and Fedora was popular I used them some but they didn't have a lot of the necessary drivers for the equipment I had at the time, and I didn't have the patience to search them out if they existed at all.

    What I need help on though:

    I want to build a $500 Ubuntu rig. The most intensive things to be done on it will be music creation (I'm already trying to get to know Jokosher ) and maybe gaming. But I'm an old gamer, I'm talking CS and RTCW, maybe enemy territory but even that was too new for me. I would like to do video editing also but that will be further down the road.

    I don't know the best hardware to choose to go with Ubuntu, that's why I'm posting here asking for help. i.e. I used to be an ATI fan but I've read so far Nvidia chips are more compatible - issues like that.

    so any and all help is much appreciated!

    thank you

  2. #2
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    Kubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    Stick to nvidia for graphics and get a quad core Intel as they are going cheap now and you will be fine, get minimum of 4GB of RAM.
    The finding of unity in variety is really what we call knowledge..... Vivekananda.

  3. #3
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    Jun 2010
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    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    Thank you for the quick response!

    What kind of motherboard should I look into?

    I'm seeing that the socket types are:

    LGA 775
    LGA 1156
    LGA 1366

    or is it personal preference on this one?

  4. #4
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    I wouldn't worry a lot about hardware compatibility issues stopping you up. I also would be hesitant to immediately cast out AMD/ATI as an option. I have used my onboard video before and it works great. (..it's ATI) .. I also use an Athlon II 240.. my current graphics card is an Nvidia, but the choice was based purely on cost.

    Now maybe I wouldn't be saying that if I had just tried to set up my Wacom tablet with ATI running the show, but I just know I see plenty of people happily using every possible combination of Intel/AMD - Nvidia/ATI .. you could be avant garde and get a VIA processor with S3 graphics card.. but that'd just be weird.

  5. #5
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    Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx

    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    775 has been around for a while, but it's perfectly awesome and probably the cheapest route for a good-but-cheap intel system. I built my brother's system with a Q6600 and it's been great.

    sorry for the double post.. I suppose I could've tacked this on to my last one.

  6. #6
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    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    No, it's fine!

    Thank you so much for the posts, im starting to learn again about all this stuff and damn has it all come a long way...

  7. #7
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    Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin

    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    forget about Intel.

    Get a motherboard with an AM3 socket. 4gb ddr3 ram. Phenom II X6 1055T 6 MB (AMD Processor in a Box (PIB)).

    and that should be quite nice and not to expensive. If not Phenom II X6 get an X4.

    An cheap graphic card to satisfy you ATI HD 5450.
    NOTE: for the need you have an on-board graphic card should be able to cut it. Example
    Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H
    Last edited by Drenriza; June 16th, 2010 at 04:45 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    Why would he get the latest AMD processor when he's on a budget of $500?

  9. #9
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    Jun 2010
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    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    well I guess that budget can grow, because it may take a month to get all the stuff together. Let's say:

    $500 for just the motherboard, CPU, and RAM.


    then I'll worry about video card and hard drives later...

  10. #10
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    Re: $500 Ubuntu Computer, advice:

    I would assume $500 US, and you are in the US. I would also assuem that you need a whole box (case, power supply, motherboard, CPU, RAM, video, HDD, DVD, video card, and possibly keyboard/mouse). If you dont want a monitor out of the $500, you should be able to build a nice system for that.

    AMD is generally better in the 'bang for buck' stakes. AFAIK ATI is currently a little ahead in bang for buck as well, but the whole GPU scene changes so fast it can be hard to keep up. With your stated use, you arent going to need an expensive video card anyway

    If you have a preference for AMD or Intel, its best to get that out of the way at the beginning IMO.

    Quote Originally Posted by Linuxforall View Post
    Stick to nvidia for graphics and get a quad core Intel as they are going cheap now and you will be fine, get minimum of 4GB of RAM.
    nVidia is generally better for long term support, but the newer ATI GPUs are good (but its always a good idea to check before you go buying them). By the time that ATI discontinues support for the newer GPUs, the opensource drivers should be stable and at least decent.

    As for 'quad core intel being cheap now'- what, on a $500 budget? The cheapest Intel quad I can see is a Q8300 ($150at newegg), and that is a lot more than the AMD options. Its also a socket that is already 'obsolete' (LGA 775).

    4GB of RAM might be pushing things as well, even 'obsolete' 2x2GB DDR2 800 is $85 at newegg. Better off with DDR3, its faster, cooler (temprature) and only a few $$$ more. as time goes on DDR3 will get cheaper, while DDR2 will probably rise.

    LGA 775 Core2Quad + 4GB DDR2 800 + a decent motherboard will add up to about $275-300. Doesnt leave much for HDD, DVD, case, power supply and a video card......($50 minimum for 500Gb, which is as small as I would go for the OPs uses, $20 minimum for a DVD burner). Do-able, but something is going to be junk IMO.

    *edit-

    Quote Originally Posted by Drenriza View Post
    forget about Intel.

    Get a motherboard with an AM3 socket. 4gb ddr3 ram. Phenom II X6 1055T 6 MB (AMD Processor in a Box (PIB)).

    and that should be quite nice and not to expensive. If not Phenom II X6 get an X4.

    An cheap graphic card to satisfy you ATI HD 5450.
    X6 is $200, minimum. 4GB DDR3 is near enough to $100. Sorry, bad idea on a $500 budget.
    Last edited by cascade9; June 16th, 2010 at 04:44 PM.

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