Motherboard/CPU combo advice needed

I’ve been looking on Tigerdirect, Geeks, and Newegg for a couple house; I can’t figure out which Motherboard/CPU combo is the best for under $150. Can someone please help me find a really good combo with preferably a duo AMD Athlon 64x2 because my graphics card is an ATI (there was a combo on Tigerdirect with a 3.4 ghz single processor and mobo for $85.99).


Quite honestly barring some weird production flaw, most name brand chipsets, ATi, nVidia, etc are nearly stable, unless you’re talking OC’ing…

I figured that much.

Question: Do most motherboards come with the BIOS already loaded? So when I plug everything in and boot my comp will know what the heck its doing? I plan on using my current hard drive so it’ll already have an OS. Also can I just use my old computer case or do I have to buy one of those custom ones?

Are these:
There is also an MSI version of that one too.

any good?

I’m not looking to get anything special; just want to upgrade from my shitty

AMD Athlon XP, 2.0 GHz 2800+

Asus is good, but avoid that first company like the plague. Motherboards already come with a bios, but it’s usually a good idea to update to the latest one. You should be able to use your old pc case (assuming your old motherboard was the same size as the new one - atx), and I recommend re-installing windows when changing a motherboard. Also, once your motherboard is installed don’t forget to download the latest chipset drivers.

edit: I’d recommend this:
Same cpu as in your link, but the motherboard uses the nforce 4 ultra chipset which is much better than that asus board.

Is it worth it to spend 60 extra dollars to go from a Intel Celeron D 360 3.46GHz to a AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+ 2.0GHz? Does higher GHz necessarily mean better? I recall that graphics cards with larger amounts of RAM aren’t always better. I have an ATI Radeon 9600XT 256MB video card and 1 gig of RAM already to go with it. I’m looking to keep my choices inside the page I linked below; I don’t mind if they aren’t terribly good as long as it’s better than what I have.|c:14|lp:50:hp:99.99|&Sort=4

But if someones thinks there is something worth spending another 30 dollars at most over the others follow this link.

Please help me. ;-;

I have this right now:

I would definitely go with this:
(good motherboard and cpu, plus it’s under your $150 limit)

Higher mhz doesn’t always mean faster, athlon 64’s and celerons have different architecture. That dual-core 3800+ will be faster than the celeron.