My girlfriend's $500 dream box

So a few months ago my girlfriend’s latptop died because her brother left it under an air conditioner in australia during a hurricane. Had an old ibook for her to use but she can’t play magic the gathering online on it or HOMM5 etc, and she is getting sick of changing her myspace page. Money is a little tight right now so I was wondering if anyone has a suggestion of the components for or where to find a pre-built cpu (don’t need a monitor, or a sound card) for less than $500 that won’t completely chug. As a benchmark say I’d be interested in it being able to run world of warcraft at medium settings, same thing for HOMM5 it doesn’t need to be able to run Oblivion in 16x12 x4 or anything like that. Any feedback would be great.

Thanks,

Wolff

Oh… so this isn’t a plastic surgery thread.

No its not for example this box

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16883108018

Is that ok? So hard for me to guess if that will just not even run windows at all?

The CPU in that system is fine (I use something even slower for WoW), but that’s not nearly enough RAM and the video chipset is a joke. How about this, assuming you already have the monitor? It’s still integrated graphics, but it should be enough for WoW and HOMM at least, and can be upgraded later on.

(Edit: Or this if the price limit is a hard one, though it will chug a bit with its lower RAM. (Edit edit: Though you can probably throw in another 512MB of RAM and still keep it under $500.))

I was thinking the same thing. Does that fall under EE or here?

It doesn’t matter either way, we would seek out the thread and read it. $500 for a girlfriend dreambox?!? That’s a steal!

I was just thinking… got any pics of girls whose box is worth $500? And for how long? Half an hour, an hour, what?

Your video card is the most important component when it comes to game performance: I would recommend buying a 7600GT for ~$100 or a X1950Pro or 7900GS for ~$150; then spending the rest of your budget on the box itself. Pretty much any name-brand desktop will do: make sure you get at least a gig of RAM and it has a PCIe x16 slot. Check deal sites like Tech Bargains or local store ads for desktops under $400. In that price range, an Athlon 64-based desktop will be a better performer; but a Pentium 4 desktop can be upgraded to a C2D CPU later, so it’s a tradeoff.

Damn, I thought this was a Sybian thread.

I’d just like to say I’m perfectly happy with the 7600GT as a WoW video card.

Wow can get away with a pretty shitty video card, as long as it has plenty of ram. 1 gig minimum.