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Should I go Athlon64 or Barton?

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Old September 8th 04, 12:02 AM
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Default Should I go Athlon64 or Barton?

On Tue, 07 Sep 2004 15:41:02 +0100, Franklin

Hi guys, after several years I have run out of power on my old 700
MHz Duron system and now want something new.

I don't play games, I am not a power user, I don't do video or audio
editing. I just surf and do some small office activities.

Considering that you were getting by with the Duron 700, and
your modest needs, there isn't any good justification for
spending a lot more for the Athlon 64.

I had thought of upgrading my current system to a T'bred 2400+ but
the PSU is not big enough and the case is a bit small, so I will
build a new system instead.

True, anything you buy will use a lot more power, create a
lot more heat.

A Barton 2500+ (with maybe an Asus A78NX mobo) is more than enough
power for me but am I buying into obsolescence? Athlon64 is where
the growth will be and furture residual values will be higher than
for Barton.

Actually it's a tough call there, typically the faster CPUs
for a given platform maintain their value better than the
slower CPUs for the next-faster platform... someday somone
will be looking to upgrade their CPU and will want near the
fastest their platform can support. As for the rest of the
parts, they'll be worth far less than you paid by the time
they show up on your doorstep or when you leave the store
with them.

Are there any other advantages of Athlon64 for a user like me other
than that?

No, and you'd be buying the less mature platform,
potentially more issues to deal with.

Are there particular disadvantages ... e.g. more expensive mobos
for athlon64? more expensive memory?

Yes, more expensive motherboard and heatsink (if you get a
good/quiet heatsink), though memory prices aren't much
different unless you buy into the hype that everyone should
use high-end, premium priced memory. Any decent name-brand
value-grade memory should be fine, will be a loss of a
percent or two of performance, but the cost savings could
easily more than offset that with a faster CPU or more
memory capacity, hard drive, video card, etc.

Best bang for the buck for yor needs would be something

Athlon XP ~ $80
(add a bit for retail Athlon w/heatsink or good 3rd parth
'sink is addt'l $20 somewhere like http://www.svc.com when
on sale (like Thermalright SLK-947).

nForce2 motherboard ~ $65

Sparkle 300W PSU FSP300-60PN ~ $35

2 x 512MB PC3200 ~ $150

You would have somewhat higher performance with the Athlon
64, but for your present needs you won't benefit enough to
notice. As for "future" use, a 2 or more years from now
either will again be slow compared to newest CPUs at that
time, only buy what you need when you need it.

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