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Piecemeal Purchasing

Discussion in 'Recording' started by Doublehelix, Sep 26, 2003.

  1. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Distinguished Member

    Oct 7, 2001
    OK...it is time for me to get a new DAW computer. Unfortunately, I won't be able to afford it until the spring when the tax return gets here...

    I am thinking about starting to buy some of the components now to help reduce the all-at-once sticker shock come spring.

    What components make sense to buy now, that won't be obsolete come spring? I've already got monitors, keyboard, mouse, a Matrox G550 video card.

    • <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Hard drives?
    • <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Power supply?
    • <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Case?
    • <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">RAM? (This one scares me, should I wait?)
    <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
    Anything else?

    While I've got your attention, what is the current price/performace leader in mobo/CPU combos? (Stick with Intel, please) I am a big ASUS fan!!!
  2. Robertibi1

    Robertibi1 Guest

    If you are an ASUS fan then I think the P4C800-E Deluxe will be the mobo to get. I have one with a P4 3.0Ghz 800Mhz FSB and 2-Gig of Corsair TWINX1024-4000 (2 1Gig pairs) memory. My 'last year's model' was an ASUS P4B533-E with a P4 2.4Ghz and 1-Gig Kingston memory. The difference is amazing, I am in heaven!!

    I have 2 Antex 1080AMG Performance Plus cases with 430Watt power supplies. I liked the first one so much, I bought another. The stock 80mm fans are rather quiet. For harddrives I use Western Digital 8Meg Cache, whatever size. I forget the model but they make some very quiet drives.

    FYI, I use Cubase SX with heavy VSTi's and the rig does not even breath hard.

    These are just my opinions but I hope it helps.

    good luck,
  3. Clueless

    Clueless Guest

    Anything you buy today will be obsolete by spring. It makes no sense to buy computers piecemeal.
  4. SonOfSmawg

    SonOfSmawg Well-Known Member

    Sep 10, 2000
    Whether you should purchase some things now really depends how far out on the bleeding edge you intend to go once your tax check arrives. If you plan to dump $2-3k into your tower, then you'll be best off waiting on everything, since you'll want everything as up-to-the-minute as possible. But if you just wanna build a kick-ass rig on a reasonable budget, then you can start buying some of the items now which won't change muchin six months.

    Stuff like your case, power supply, and floppy drive are pretty safe purchases. If you intend to use IDE harddrives, you're probably safe there too, but get the ones with the 8Mb cache. It makes a BIG difference.

    Don't buy any of the stuff that advances rapidly until you're ready to build, such as your mobo, CPU, RAM, and CD burner. You'll get much better value for your money if you wait the six months for this stuff. In six months, you'll either be able to buy the same thing much cheaper, or be able to buy much better stuff for the same price.

    Hope this helps.
  5. MisterBlue

    MisterBlue Guest

    Your dilemma is easily solved if you start focusing on having a solid machine to do whatever you need to do rather than owning the "latest and greatest" rig (... a title that no computer really has longer than a couple of weeks these days).

    A 40GB Boot and an 80 or 120GB Data Hard disk with 8MB buffers will (usually ;) ) not stop working once a new model comes out. They will offer you plenty of space and with a bit of archiving every now and then (to e.g. DVD+RW - which you want to buy no sooner than you really need to archive) your system will not run out of disk space anytime soon.

    CPU's and MoBo's will always lose their cutting edge quickly, so get something that has enough power for what you intend to do at a reasonable price. I personally believe in buying at the "price-performance-knee"(TM) which is right before the CPU's get a lot more expensive for very little extra power. These days that is a CPU around the 2.6 GHz mark.

    Quiet power supplies and CPU fans are also not likely to go out of fashion. I personally would use Enermax and Zalman products and you will be safe for a while as these products don't lose value quickly or get outdated.

    Finally, RAM has actually gone UP in price recently and is likely to continue to be a gamble. It's real capitalism at work - the market is entirely ruled by supply and demand. You can still get a good deal if you look around a little (often with a mail-in rebate). If you're on a budget just get 512MB now (1GB if you can afford it) and stack up later. Just make sure to leave some slots open (i.e. rather buy 1GB than 2x 512MB). Also get the fastest memory that is available to maximize your chances of being able to reuse it in future machines (admittedly another gamble, so don't pay too much extra for unneeded speed).

    Hope this helps,

  6. Doublehelix

    Doublehelix Distinguished Member

    Oct 7, 2001
    Thanks for the replies guys...

    This is kindof what I figured. I will probably start stockpiling things like the case, powersupply, floppy drive, hard drives, that kind of thing, and wait until spring to get the mobo, cpu and RAM.

    I keep seeing such good deals on the WD hard drives (8MB cache), I hate to pass them up, but I know that in 6 months, the deals will be much better...they always are!!!

    If I buy a few things now, I could easily spend about $400 on case/ps and a couple of HDs...that will make it a bit cheaper come spring.

    Thanks again!

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