Motherboard Muddle

Published Date
01 - May - 2006
| Last Updated
01 - May - 2006
Motherboard Muddle
I have decided to opt for an AMD64 3000 processor, 512 MB of memory, a 120 GB hard drive, and good onboard graphics. However, I am not able to pin down a particular motherboard. I would like to have a PCIe slot for a later upgrade, FireWire, Gigabit Ethernet, 8-Channel audio and SATA 2 support.
S Dheeraj

As far as motherboards for the AMD64 processors go, you can opt for the ASUS A8N-VM CSM or MSI K8NGM2 series. They have all the features you're looking for. Both these motherboards also have onboard graphics that can be allocated 128 MB of your main memory. The onboard graphics is good enough for casual gaming, but don't expect it to run high-end games. The ASUS A8N-VM CSM is available for around Rs 7,500.

What Would Agent 001 Do?
Q. I have an nGage and a Nokia 6600, and I want to move up. My budget is Rs 15K to 16K. I don't like the Sony Ericsson K750i. I was thinking about the Nokia 6270 or the Sony Ericsson W800i. Which one do you think is better, and what would you buy? How much does the W810i cost?
Venkat Deep Rajan

I would recommend the Sony Ericsson K750i, simply because at Rs 14,000, it provides the best bang for your buck. A direct comparison between the Nokia 6270 and the W800i would be wrong: though they have similar specs, the target market is different. The Nokia 6270 is targeted towards executives and such who want a feature-rich phone. It still has the old Series 40 UI, and I don't recommend it because new applications are developed for Series 60 phones, not the older Series
40 ones.

The W800i, on the other hand, is targeted towards the young, as is amply clear from the "Walkman" branding. So, simply put, if you need a music-oriented phone, the W800i is your best bet. The W810i is the new version of the W800i-it incorporates some minor changes and has new looks, and costs around Rs 22,000 (street price).

A Cell Phone On A Budget
Q. I am looking for a cell phone with a 1.2 megapixel camera, Bluetooth, MP3 player, extendable memory, good colour display and good battery life. It should also have video and voice recording, GPRS and Java support. My budget is below Rs 10,000.
Lakhya Nath

The low budget you have allocated restricts your choices. If you can extend it by about Rs 2,000, you can opt for the Nokia 6630. It has most of the features you've mentioned, and also the fastest processor on a Nokia phone.

In Search Of An App Cruncher
Q. I have an old computer that I would like to upgrade to a better-performing one. Apart from games, I will be working on 3D Max, VectorWorks, Flash 8, and some movie editing. I need a computer that can crunch its way through all these. My budget is around Rs 20,000; I can stretch it to a maximum of about 25,000. I would like to know what processor and motherboard are best suited to my kind of applications. I need at least 512 MB of RAM, an 80 GB HDD, a DVD-Writer, TV-Tuner, and optical mouse.
Shantanu Adhicary

For the kind of applications you are looking to run, I would suggest you first upgrade the necessary components before adding any peripherals. First, get a good motherboard-processor combo, ideally an AMD Athlon64 3200 or above and an NVIDIA 6150 chipset-based motherboard, such as the ASUS A8N-VM CSM. This motherboard has onboard video, but don't expect to play games at high resolutions on it. This combo will set you back by somewhere around Rs 17,000; 512 MB of memory will cost about Rs 2,000.

These new boards require a 24-pin connector, so a new power supply is called for-I recommend an Antec, which will cost at least Rs 3,500. All these together will cost about Rs 25,000, but are required for the kind of stuff you plan to run. You can add components such as the TV-Tuner and DVD-Writer later. 

All's In Place-Except The Graphics
Q. My PC has an Intel 3 GHz Processor, ASRock 775 Dual-915GL motherboard with PCIe slot, 512 MB of DDR 400 RAM, and a 17-inch SyncMaster 793s CRT monitor. I would like to know the best graphics card I can get for Rs 10 to 15,000 for my system.
Ashish Vulimiri
If you want an NVIDIA card, you should be able to afford one based on the 7600 GT chipset with 256 MB of RAM (around Rs 15,000). For the same price, you could also opt for an ATI X1600 chipset-based card.

Here's a table that lists hard disk prices-there isn't much variation from one manufacturer to another. These are MRPs in Rupees-note that in the case of most dealers, you'll get the disks for a good 10 to 15 per cent less than the MRP.

Hard Disk Prices
Size/type Seagate Maxtor Western Digital Hitachi Samsung 
200 GB IDE 4,750 4,750 4,750 4,750 4,750 
200 GB SATA 5,000 5,000 5,000 5,000 5,000 
300 GB IDE 6,500 6,500 6,250 6,500 6,500 
300 GB Sata 7,000 7,250 7,000 7,250 7,000 

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