New PC?

I’ve been agonizing about buying a new computer for the last three weeks. My current PC, a Pentium III 733 with 640Mb RAM, is almost five years old — just one month shy of it. It’s about time to buy a new one… Working with IntelliJ IDEA has become a pain. I don’t know why. Has IDEA become bigger and thus slower? Have my projects become bigger? Either way, I can’t really change any of that, I have to fight the symptoms.

The problem with buying a new PC is that I’m also saving money to buy a car. It’s hard to save for two important things at the same time. Originally, my plan was to first get the car and somehow make it with this PC until the end of the year. By now, I’m so pissed off that I think I’ll buy the PC first.

Right now, I’m thinking of getting a new case with a supposedly semi-quiet power supply, an additional quiet case fan, an Athlon 64 3500+ CPU with a quiet cooler, an Asus A8V motherboard with AGP, 2Gb RAM (4 modules), and a Western Digital 160Gb 7200 RPM SATA hard drive.

Originally, I had also thought about using a two-drive RAID 0 array, or including a 37Gb 10000 RPM SATA Raptor hard drive. I don’t think it’s really necessary, though. I even thought about cutting the 2Gb RAM to 1Gb, but I think 2Gb would be a good thing.

I did consider noise when I chose these components. For a while, I thought about using a fan-less power supply and liquid cooling, but that would have added about $250, and I’m not sure if it’s necessary. In Houston, the AC is one most of the time anyway, and that drowns out a PC completely.

So… any comments on these components? I haven’t ordered them yet, I’m still waiting for more money…


I got this PC, but I ordered 2Gb RAM (2 modules) instead.


About Mathias

Software development engineer. Principal developer of DrJava. Recent Ph.D. graduate from the Department of Computer Science at Rice University.
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