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Building on a Budget: The $300 AMD PC
by raycosm
Permalink:   (30 comments)
Description

I built this as an upgrade over my 2011 Macbook Pro as a station for doing school work, using the internet, and a little bit of light gaming. Matlab, Microsoft Office, Multisim, and general computing all seem to be pretty noticeably faster than my Macbook, and it's definitely a lot more comfortable to use a nice mechanical keyboard, wireless mouse, and 22" monitor than it is to sit at my laptop. The timing of this build also happened to coincide with the Steam sale, and the AMD A10 with integrated graphics performs pretty well at the highest settings on the cheap old <$5 games that are within my budget such as Bioshock and TF2.

My budget for this build was strictly $300 and the keyboard, monitor, mouse, and OS I already had. I would have made it too if my Comcast modem/router combo could actually be moved to a different room, but the house is too old for there to be more than one cable connection. In the end, I had to buy a PCI-E wireless card which pushed me over $300, but close enough that I'm still satisfied.

Most of the parts were purchased secondhand locally from other college students selling PC parts or used on Amazon. I didn't haggle too much on them, but the prices still beat sales on Newegg, Tigerdirect, and Amazon due to tax and shipping. The AMD A10-5800K was acquired for a very nice $85 used off Amazon and doesn't appear to have any problems. Buying used parts was surprisingly painless and ended up saving me a lot of money considering the budget.

Part List
Details
AMD A10-5800K 3.8GHz Quad-Core Processor
CPU Clock Rate3.8GHz
CPU Temperature While Idle27.0° C
CPU Temperature Under Load48.0° C
Comments
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Sorted by:
 
 
Erikus [1 Build] 16 points 13 months ago

For $300, this is impressive. I would probably get about as far as a motherboard and run over budget.

 
 
godshawk 3 points 13 months ago

This is the kind of computer I want.

 
 
Highwlaker [1 Build] 1 point 9 months ago

Same here xD

 
 
l13199l [1 Build] 5 points 13 months ago

nice, i admire you, i cant budget for the life of me

 
 
MadBadger 4 points 13 months ago

Be proud of this one. It's difficult to even mount a decent CPU at the $300 price point. Nice work.

I wish I could get this degree of savings on my build!

 
 
AlCarter2013 [1 Build] 4 points 11 months ago

I love the build. I especially liked the first part involving you switching from a Mac. :3

 
 
SEWComputers [4 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Good build for the relatively small budget. Is the stock 5800k fan loud? I'm thinking of using it for my personal rig.

 
 
raycosm [Submitter] [1 Build] 2 points 13 months ago

Well, it's definitely not quiet! I don't mind the noise though, my room is the front room of a house that faces a rather busy street and the white noise generated from the fan helps drown out the outside noise a little. That being said, you probably want a quieter one.

 
 
fsma92 [2 Builds] 1 point 13 months ago

Nop it's decently quiet. Don't know when overclocked tho..

 
 
Frostbyter 1 point 13 months ago

You shant really overclock with it anyways, so its all good! With an 8350 its barely keeping it at an acceptable temp.

 
 
jw215 [1 Build] 1 point 7 months ago

At high revs it makes this high pitched noise, most likely from the bearings.

 
 
nsyedhasan 1 point 13 months ago

Consider overclocking the RAM.

 
 
EagleRevenant 1 point 13 months ago

Nice, What games do you play on this?

 
 
bambam5211 1 point 13 months ago

Did your CPU come with a stock fan?

 
 
raycosm [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 12 months ago

Yeah. I'm not really bothered by the volume since it's just white noise, so I can't really tell you if it's loud.

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runtrat 1 point 11 months ago

nice job. i could get the same thing if not worse performance wise for $600

 
 
jadenmp 1 point 9 months ago

thanks for the help i think i might slightly tweak it then build it

 
 
ViolentBoo 1 point 9 months ago

Nice build dude! Just a little iffy about the PSU, I always go with Corsair with PSU.

 
 
dromni 1 point 7 months ago

I personally would get a mid level graphics card like Radeon HD 7850 making it a $500 budget to play games like Sleeping Dogs and BF4... But for a $300 budget, this is nothing but AWESOME!

 
 
drummerdude2010 1 point 6 months ago

DId the motherboard fit with the case you bought? the notes are telling me that the case has front panels and the mobo has back usb.. im new to all this

 
 
CNEPeddlar [1 Build] 1 point 6 months ago

is the wifi adapter good?

 
 
zainathan 1 point 20 days ago

nice budget build! +1

 
 
JasonRespawn 0 points 12 months ago

if you were to upgrade put in a GPU

 
 
raycosm [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 12 months ago

Looking to put in a 7870 or 7950 about a year from now, and maybe a jump from FM2 to AM3+ with an FX-8xxx since I think FM2 is on its way out.

 
 
dusty0 2 points 12 months ago

The next is FM2+, it will fit Trinity, Richland, and the up coming Kaveri.

 
 
PickItApart -1 points 13 months ago

Prices are great. Hard to beat this for the price. Why not 2133 RAM for light gaming? I'm assuming it's a budget issue.

 
 
raycosm [Submitter] [1 Build] 1 point 13 months ago

Yeah, I'm just too cheap to buy faster ram really. If I had a bigger budget I'd probably go with an AMD FX and a discrete GPU but I don't even really have the money to buy games outside of <$10 ones during the steam sale.