CHALLENGE: How BEAST (not 666) of a PC could you build for $200-300?


Called from Darkness Web Developer
You guys had some excellent recommendations for my own PC last year.

My girlfriend hasn't replaced her laptop since 2003!!!! DADGUMMITT!!!!

She mostly uses it for work, and if she did ever venture into gaming it would most likely be something like Guild Wars 2, Esther, puzzle games, but atm gaming is low priority for her.

I realize $200-300 wouldn't include monitors, and YES she would need a case. I know $200 is likely not doable, but lowest price/value is WIN. I think I still have a 400w power supply that should be sufficient. She needs everything else.

What can she do?

No one's reply is required, but any suggestions are MOST welcome. I do a lot of building of my own PC's, but I lack the deeper knowledge that some of you have with compatibility and current technology (mostly due to the year sin between PC builds I am out of the pun intended).
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New Member
Your biggest problem will be the os because if you are looking to spend around 200 most of that will be your os unless you go linux.


New Member
I was looking at the mother board specs and looks like you will need a video card also. All in all you should be able to stay close to your $300 dollar limit.


Active Member
PC in 2006

Xion ATX Custom Case
ASRock 939DUAL-SATA2 Mobo
AMD Athlon 64 3800+ 2.4GHz
4GB OCZ EL Platinum PC3200 Ram
320GB Seagate HD
Samsung DVD-RW Rom
ATI X800XT PE AGP Video Card
450 Watt PSU non-brand
3 case fans; 1x120mm, 2x80mm.
Windows XP Pro x64 OS

The hard drive is unfortunately dead and the video card is obviously discontinued.
Though, the video card came with 3 free games, that I never played.

Btw, I spent $450 on that card alone back then because it was special. ;)
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Called from Darkness Web Developer are AWESOME! Some excellent suggestions here! She is really in need of this in a BAD way, so this will be such a boost in power and performance for her at a low rate. I have always appreciated the collective pool of knowledge in this community and how it can help others.



New Member
Check out
Sometime you can stumble across a $300 laptop that isn't horrible. Won't be good for gaming, but should at least be an upgrade.

Another suggestion might be check daily. Sometime their deal of the day is a cheap but decent laptop (have seen decent desktops as well, but only the tower).

Besides that you are going to be relying on used and donated parts.
My video card alone cost more than that...

Anyway, good luck! Wish I had pieces to offer! : )


Staff member
Thread revival!!!'d

Thanks to this thread, particularly Nought's posts/links to TigerDirect, I've been /really/ wanting to put together a new machine for the last month. My computer was already quite outdated, but it's gone off the deep end and committed seppuku. I'm now on an even older machine (rockin' that P4, yo) that acts like it wants to follow suit.

Anyway, I've now got this bundle in my shopping cart and a very strong itch to finish the purchase. True, it's a few bucks more than the other system and is quad-core compared to six-core, but, since I'd need to buy SATA drives, it ends up being a substantially lower buy-in cost... and still allows for upgrading the CPU if I feel so inclined down the road.

I've got the money... it's just hard to justify dropping $300 (after tax/shipping and before rebate) in one swoop while still a newbie part-timer at work.

But it'd be nice, and, for better or worse, I pretty much need a decent computer.

Will edit post later when my decision is final. haha