When I built my current box, I bought it off e-bay. *I was in the same position you are, and I knew what I wanted. *I paid $405.00+s&h for a 600Mhz Duron on an MSI K7t-PRO m'board. *It came W/ a case, a 10Gb. H.D., 64 megs of PC-100 RAM, a ricoh burner, a WINmodem and some other stuff. *I removed the !0 gig HD, installed my 2 Maxtor HD's, put in my 256 megs of PC-133, threw away the WINmodem and replaced it with my old faithful US Robotics 56k external, and started installing OS's. *I'm gonna replace the video card eventually (SiS 6326 w8Mhz vidRAM), but it works OK for now. *Since I did the original setup, I've added an additional 512 of RAM, and replaced my original 40x CD-ROM drive with a 52x, but other than that, I'm pretty satisfied, and the system is upgradeable. *If the aircraft industry recoverssoon, I'm gonna upgrade the processer (1.2 Athalon T-bird). *You CAN do it on a budget, but know what you've got, and what you want- be prepaired to comprimise, and you'll do just fine.