Need help chosing gaming pc

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by JoshS, Jun 1, 2002.

  1. JoshS

    JoshS Stunt Coordinator

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    HI everyone,

    I'm looking to get a new computer, mostly for online gaming.
    I have a cable modem so the conn is good but I don't know much about the rest.

    Should I get a bigger processor (2.0 pentium 4 or higher) or spend the dough on a great video card?

    Best mouse for gaming.

    Will 128ram work or should I go higher?

    20 or 80 gig hard drive?

    Again this pc will be used mostly for games and surfing.

    I have a 19in Gateway monitor that i could use so I don't need another. It's about 2 yrs old, or will a new monitor have better resolution, picture, etc.......

    I have about $1200 to spend but I am flexible.

    I know, a lot of questions. Thanks,

    Josh
     
  2. GaryAR

    GaryAR Agent

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    Should I get a bigger processor (2.0 pentium 4 or higher) or spend the dough on a great video card?

    i wouldn't bother with anything more than a 1.6 or 1.8 GHz P4. anything more than that will be overkill (especially for gaming). dollar for dollar, you'll get a much bigger return spending money on a video card than on a faster cpu (for gaming anyway)

    Best mouse for gaming.

    i use the wireless cordless freedom keyboard & optical mouse from logitech. just get some rechargeable batteries, and you'll be all set. sure, it doesn't have the best resolution, but on the other hand i can play RTCW on my couch in front of my 36" tv/monitor. and that's worth a lot.

    Will 128ram work or should I go higher?

    128mb might be good if you're running linux, but with winXP that's not going to cut it. you'll need at least 256, and 384 or 512 would be even better. ram is fairly cheap though, and important so don't skimp.

    20 or 80 gig hard drive?

    depends on how much porn you'll download? hehe. i think 40 is still a good number, and unless you take tons of digital pictures or download entire movies that should suffice. 20 is definately too small if you're running winXP (although it's better to have a small drive to install the OS on, and a larger one for the programs & files).

    I have a 19in Gateway monitor that i could use so I don't need another. It's about 2 yrs old, or will a new monitor have better resolution, picture, etc.......

    better resolution? probably. it depends on what you need... for high end gaming, you might want 1600x1200 at 85Hz. chances are, your gateway won't support that resolution. personally, i'd spend the money elsewhere. upgrade it later if you find it lacking

    hope that helps some.
    -gary
     
  3. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

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    $1200 is a GREAT budget:

    Intel Pentium IV 2.2Ghz Northwood $241 - googlegear.com
    Abit BD7II-RAID - $140 - newegg.com
    512MB PC2100 RAM 2x256MB - $100($50each) - newegg.com
    Gainward nVidia GeFORCE 4 Ti4200 - $161 - googlegear.com
    Hercules Game Theater XP - $129.99 - best buy
    Seagate 80GB HD - $111 - newegg.com
    Plextor 40x12x40x CD-RW - $135
    Pioneer 16x DVD-ROM - $43
    MS IntelliMouse Explorer ver.3 - $31 - newegg.com
    Antec SX830 Case - $100 - CompUSA
    ---------------------------------------------
    Total - $1191.99 + Shipping and handling and taxes

    You could take the Processor speed down a bit, but make sure you stay in the Northwood family.

    You could dump the BD7II-RAID for just a standard BD7II and save yourself about $22.

    You could get a slower CD-RW, but I wouldn't.

    Some people are going to say go AMD, and yes I would agree with that but if you absolutely have to buy today, I wouldn't buy AMD right now until the new TBreds come out later in the month.
     
  4. JoshS

    JoshS Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the replies guys.

    Kelly:

    I do not plan on building the pc, I'll probably buy a Dell.

    I bought one for my wife and really like it, to bad I don't get to use it much.

    I guess I'll spend the money on the vid card.

    Thanks again

    Josh
     
  5. Bruce Hedtke

    Bruce Hedtke Cinematographer

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    The video card AND RAM. Get as much RAM as you can afford. You can have overkill on processor speed, but not on RAM. One of the best places to put a system together (they build it for you, you just choose the parts) is www.ibuypower.com. PCGamer ranks them at 94%, which is very good.
    Bruce
     
  6. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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  7. JoshS

    JoshS Stunt Coordinator

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    Bruce,

    Thanks for the link, I'll keep them in mind. Nice systems for little money.

    Camp,

    No thanks, I don't quite trust myself enought to build one.
    I know DIY would save me much denaro but not right now.

    Thanks guys

    Josh
     
  8. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

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    That machine that I priced out for you will be quit a bit more at Dell....by about $500+ dollars.

    Building a PC is just like legos, you can do it.
     
  9. Rob Lutter

    Rob Lutter Producer

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    If I can build a PC... anybody can! [​IMG]
    FYI... my system cost around $1250 to build (w/o monitor... already have a 19")... and I priced it out to something around the mid 2s' for a Dell machine with comparable hardware... so it is well worth it to build it yourself.
     
  10. JoshS

    JoshS Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok ok,

    Do you guys have any resourses for building pcs?

    Like the Idiots guide to building computers?

    Maybe I'll give it a whirl.

    Thanks,

    Josh
     
  11. Chris Bardon

    Chris Bardon Cinematographer

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    There's really not all that much to building a PC. The hardest thing to do is the Motherboard, and if you buy the right kind (Acer comes to mind) they have a very detailed manual. Basically, it's just a matter of plugging things into the right places.

    As for what to buy, the best bargain for CPUs right now is the P4 1.6A. I bought this chip, and promptly overclocked it to 2.13 Ghz with no problems at all. As for Ram, 128 Mb is about the bare minimum these days. Since memory is relatively cheap, I'd go with 512 Mb pc 2700. Hard drive-depends on the price difference. If you're planning on doing JUST gaming, then 20 is plenty, but 80 gives you the space to never have to uninstall anything, as well as keep lots of videos etc.

    Just don't buy a dell-Stay away from Dell. Even if you don't want to build it yourself, find a place that'll build to spec for you-there's lots around
     
  12. JasenP

    JasenP Screenwriter

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    I would recommend an AMD processor over a Pentium. More bang for the buck in my opinion. The "sweet spot" for pricing right now is the XP 1800+.
     
  13. Dennis Reno

    Dennis Reno Supporting Actor

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    If you are serious about a gaming PC there is one word to remember - upgradability. OK, so maybe its not a real word, but it is still important. That awesome gaming rig you purchase may be a screamer (no, not THAT kind of screamer) today, but in a year or two you may find it lacking. The ability to easily upgrade the CPU, video card, add more RAM or install an additional hard drive should not be overlooked.
    Too many of the big PC manufacturers use proprietary components (mobo, RAM, etc.) which limits how easily you can upgrade your system. A DIY system or true custom configured machine is your best bet. I personally don't have the time to DIY so I use custom builders. My most recent purchase (last year) was with a company called Envision Computer Solutions. Very helpful staff and reasonable prices.
    If you decide to purchase components and assemble it yourself I would recommend either Multiwave or NewEgg. I've used both and have been very satisfied.
    No matter what vendor(s) you chose head over to ResellerRatings and check out the vendor.
    BTW, I am not affiliated in any way with any of the vendors listed above. Just in case you wondered!
     
  14. Chris Bardon

    Chris Bardon Cinematographer

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    Agreed Dennis-the only problem is that in 2 years you'll likely have to buy a new MB & Ram anyhow. Since CPU designs change regularly, as does memory, there's a very good chance that all 3 core components will have to be changed at the same time.
     
  15. Rob Lutter

    Rob Lutter Producer

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    For a motherboard... I would recommend the one I have, the ECS K7S6A. It is a stable board and... NO JUMPERS TO SET! Very easy for a first-time builder. Works very nicely with my AMD AthlonXP 2000+ and a 512MB stick of PC2700 (DDR333)
    [​IMG]
     
  16. JoshS

    JoshS Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks guys,

    But is there a book or website that can show me how?

    Detailed instructions and pics.

    I've installed an ethernet card, after that I thought i was
    superman lol.

    I'll give it a try if I can find some sort of guide.

    Thanks,

    Josh
     
  17. JasenP

    JasenP Screenwriter

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    Josh
    The Screensavers website has quite a few do-it-yourself articles available in a searchable database. It's been valuable to me in the past.
     
  18. Max Leung

    Max Leung Producer

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    I agree...AMD is the best bang-for-buck. Pentium IV is good for stability (when the CPU fan dies, the P4 will still run, but the AMD will smoke). However, the AMD far cheaper. An Athlon XP 1800+ is very cheap now, and performs on par with a Pentium [email protected]
    The money left over can net you a Geforce 4 Ti4400 card or better. [​IMG]
     
  19. Chris Bardon

    Chris Bardon Cinematographer

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    I've actually had bad luck with AMD chips, and have steered clear of them for a while. I know that the Intel chips work, and I've never had an overheating problem. With the thermal management of the p4 chips, it makes them well worth the price-especially if you want to overclock.
     

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