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Building a Pentium 4
Jim Oct-31-01 10:05 AM
LAST EDITED ON Oct-31-01 AT 11:07 AM (GMT)

I would like to build a Pentium 4. I have never built a computer but have worked with them for years and installed hard drives, modems, etc. Where do I go and how do I get going with this project?

My idea is to use one of the Intel processor boards, but I don't know which one. I don't need LAN and if I use an audio card such as a Soundblaster, I don't need audio on the board. And isn't the 5 PCI slot board better than the 3 slot? What do you recommend?

I have no idea which or where to get a case. I assume I should use an ATX case? 300 watt power supply? How do I know the board will fit? If it has 7 slots and my board has 5, does that matter? Do fans come with the case? Can you add fans?

Which P-4 processor should I use? I thougha about the 1.8 or 1.9 Ghz. What about pins? Some have more than others. Will they both fit the socket?

I guess I'd get Rambus RDRAM 800 Mhg, about 256 k to start.

Then I guess I'd need a hard drive. I am using a Maxtor right now. I have gone through Western Digitals.

Then I'd need some sort of CD or DVD -- don't know which or what would be best.

Then the video card. I want a high power good video board even though I won't be playing games all the time. I want the power and performance just in case.

Then I guess a modem and software. My Win 98 is working fine now and has served my needs ok.

What about static electricity> Where can you get those wrist straps. How do you keep from frying the boards with static electricity?

Then after I get all the parts, I'll need to assemble the computer without damaging any of the parts.

Can you help me get started? Any and all suggestions will be most appreciated.

3. RE: Building a Pentium 4
lbyard Oct-31-01 06:07 PM
In response to message 0
You have a lot more money to spend on a computer than I do. I would first sit down and figure-out what my requirements are for the computer. That is, what you are going to do with it. Then I would:

Decide on what software is needed to meet those requirements.

What are the software manufacturersí hardware requirements/recommendations? Check compatibility, etc.

What are the real performance requirements?

Other requirements: Reliability, cost, etc.

If you want the fastest computer on the block, that becomes a requirement, but not necessarily a requirement for using an Intel processor and motherboard.

If you really want the latest and greatest, it has to be Intel, and you are willing to pay for it, than becomes a requirement. (But donít think you can buy a computer that will not become obsolete in three years. It will become obsolete. If you keep it five years you will wish you had sold it when it was three years old.)

I would need a good reason for that sort of requirement. Some time ago, a good reason would something like a system for a musician that absolutely had to have Intel to run the software. E.G., my Son is a musician and he has an Abit motherboard and an Intel processor that were purchased a year or two ago. That requirement appears not be the case so much anymore. Another reason is the mindset of a customer and unwillingness of the vendor, including myself at times, to sell anything but the biggest name brands, to avoid the risk of finger-pointing if something goes wrong. In other words, the most conservative approach appearance wise becomes a requirement. The most conservative approach does not mean the resulting computer will be the most trouble-free. Intel has had a lot of problems over the years.

I for one would not buy a Pentium 4, an Intel motherboard, or RDRAM memory. All three cost far too much and do not provide noticeable performance gains over non-Intel motherboards, AMD processors, and DDR memory.

Once you have decided on a processor, start reading motherboard reviews on the Internet. Take them with a grain of salt. Anyone who can write (and some who canít) can write a review. Many of the people writing reviews on computer products for Internet or periodical consumption do not have the technical education/knowledge/experience to really know what they are writing about and to properly evaluate a product. Larry

Ref: ADVICE ON BUYING A MOTHERBOARD (http://duxcw.com/digest/guides/buymb/intro.htm)

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