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What is a gaming computer? Need help .


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Posted on Mar 12, 2013 6:57:20 AM PDT
Eric DiPier says:
This thread has some interesting opinions.

I've bought my last two desktop machines from CyberPower, and I've been very happy. No problem with the power supplies at all. I love the freedom that they give you to choose each component.

Dell machines are okay for lots of stuff, but not gaming. They typically use small power supplies and that's one component that they don't let you upgrade. They also tend to use underpowered video cards, and as Susan mentioned, they're not set up for future upgrades. (Which makes sense: they want you to come back and buy a new machine from them when you decide you need to upgrade).

And finally, holy cow, you don't "need" a separate sound card to play Oblivion and Skyrim. If you *want* one, that's fine, but I've played 500+ hours of Skyrim and 300+ hours of Oblivion and I never once thought about getting a sound card.

Posted on Feb 17, 2013 7:51:31 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 17, 2013 7:52:39 PM PST
keep in mind every game sells with the minimum and suggested system requirements for that game on the box or on the site your downloading from.
that would be a good starting point, compairing your systems specs with games you want to buy, and getting familiar.
fyi your OS is a resource hog... you would be leaps ahead down grading too window Xp from vista for gaming with what hardware your using

but its really not hard to build a gaming system @ 2/3's the cost or better.
heck the motherboard its self comes with a what goes where booklet in the box, and with using your old computer for googling something that has you stumped or mystified.
you can be pro a builder in no time..

also keep this in mind the relativity of a pc has not changed in over 20 years. there parts have only gotten better (a whole lot better), but they still go in the same spots.
ive learned solely through survival, i was pretty much in the same boat you are now ken.. 5 years back. i now run flawless sytems, with out listing everything i did, my Windows Experience Index is 7.6 at the cost of 936.00
do what you can to stay away from premade computers like dell for a gaming system, you can not overclock them ...and they are not upgrade friendly

Posted on Feb 9, 2013 8:15:51 PM PST
Cos says:
If you don't want to build your own machine, you can still pick out all of the parts and have it assembled for you. Best Buy, Frys, Tiger Direct, Microcenter and many other stores will build your PC for you. Frys for example will run specials on installs for under 100.00. This way if there is a problem they guarantee their work and you get the parts you want.

Posted on Feb 9, 2013 9:53:03 AM PST
N. Hanks says:
Ken,

I don't build my own computers; however I do play Oblivion and Skyrim which you listed as games you want to play. One thing I haven't seen mentioned in the parts lists being recommended here are sound cards. You need a good sound card for Oblivion and Skyrim.

I accidentally ended up with a sound card embedded on the motherboard when I got a new computer and was not exact enough with the specs. It was fine for all my games except Oblivion. I had to add a separate SoundBlaster card (and then a different mother board because the original was conflicting with the SoundBlaster card).

If you ask in the tech section of the Oblivion or Skyrim forums at Bethesda, there are folks who are happy to let you know current sound cards, video cards, etc. which work well with these games. Compare those with what's being recommended here and ask questions if there are major differences.

If you truly don't want to build one yourself, then check around where you live for a computer shop which custom builds machines. If you take in an exact list of parts IN WRITING and keep a copy, then you shouldn't run into the trouble I did. It will obviously cost more than building it yourself but would net a better machine at a lower cost than the pre-built ones.

Good luck.

Posted on Feb 8, 2013 6:01:50 AM PST
Rockhardly says:
Just a heads-up:

I popped over to NewEgg, and noticed that they are advertising a sale on high-end components as part of a promotion to get people ready for Crysis 3.

Just poking around at the suggested items, there are some really good prices up right now. Prior to this, I was thinking of using part of my tax/bonus to build a new PC with moderate upgrades - but from the looks of the prices right now, I can go "full-nerd" (read: liquid cooling, SLI) for not much more money than I was already prepared to spend.

Worth checking out if you're in the market to build a PC now.

Most prices seem to end on 2/11/13, though - so you'll have to do your research quickly. Having said that, the prices are already pretty low - so even if you need to take your time, the suggestions alone are worth watching. Some pretty interesting prices on higher end stuff.

Posted on Feb 6, 2013 9:57:01 PM PST
Sorns says:
If you haven't bought a PC yet, then you might as well take a look at what Amazon has for <800.

This one will run games ok: CybertronPC 5150 Escape Gaming PC (Black)

You can also go to the pc category and search for PCs priced from 600 too 800.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 4, 2013 5:18:55 PM PST
Thalamus says:
Wut. First of all, his CPU would be such a bottleneck that having any of those cards would be pointless. Second, the PSU installed by Dell is pretty much guaranteed to not be able to provide the amount of wattage needed to run those cards.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 3, 2013 10:48:32 AM PST
No. That's horrible advice.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 3, 2013 1:12:25 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 3, 2013 1:45:18 AM PST
uncensored says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 1, 2013 9:03:53 AM PST
[Deleted by the author on Feb 1, 2013 9:04:55 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 29, 2013 9:40:12 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 29, 2013 9:41:22 PM PST
Dry_Bones says:
@Me
From the hours I spent reading how to choose the right PSU, one of the points I learned was to skip the included power supplies in cases, specially/mainly for a gaming or performance PC. Personally I would skip them all together, even for a office PC.
Also, that is a very old chipset or controller hub(w/e its called) for the motherboard. Go hire up to an A75 or A85x if you want usb3.0 & SATA III w/the 85. IMO, when buying a computer/putting one together, go with the latest affordable tech.

p.s. -To everyone-
Don't forget Taxes add up fast & high!
=D
mine sure did... :(

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 3:58:53 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 29, 2013 4:00:39 PM PST
Alex LeGay says:
I would recommend building one. You can make it more of a project because you don't have too buy everything at once. I spent about $1000 on mine over about 2 months. Find what you want then find the parts on pcpartpicker.com(DO NOT choose parts from pc part picker Some of the items that have high ratings may be older and becoming outdated.) It will tell you where you can get all of your parts the cheapest.
If you are worried about not being able to build it i had limited knowlege about it at first but youtube has many tutorials. Neweggs channel has a nice 3 part one.
My Pc can run the crysis 3 beta on optimal and i only spent $1000. Building your own pc will make it sooo much easier to upgrade in the future.

PS i wouldn't skimp out on your parts.

Posted on Jan 16, 2013 10:14:22 PM PST
Me says:
I pondered what I would buy if I were building my own steam box a week or so ago, I came up with a $300 mini tower that would be a fairly rocking computer. As you already have your own hard drive, it will probably be closer to $250 Companies like Dell and HP will often have some weird configuration for the motherboard and/or power supply, if this is the case with you, you might want to consider another case.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811208049 $40 case with 300W power supply.
Next comes the motherboard.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130661
Has HDMI and vga out, for your old crt monitor, or unless you decide to hook it up to a tv. Compatible with APU processor.$50
Next is the processor, combined processor and gpu will save money, can still drop another video card in later if you want.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113280
AMD A10-5800K Trinity quad 3.8GHz with onboard Radeon HD 7660D $130
And finally, ram. Ram has gotten cheap and it is nice.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148486
Crucial 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3 1600 ballistix. $42

With all of that the cart comes to $262. Some people may disagree with using the APU, but a 7660D isn't a bad chip by any means, and it has all the power I would want and keeps future upgrades easy. Also, most gaming pc builds will run $500-800, $262 might be reason enough to consider this.

Posted on Jan 16, 2013 5:43:45 PM PST
Thalamus says:
Things have progressed a lot since your last build. New motherboards/drives will use SATA rather than PATA, which doesn't utilize master and slave settings so you don't need to mess around with jumpers anymore. A lot of motherboards are also starting to utilize GUI BIOS which are much more intuitive to use than the older text based BIOS. It makes first time set-up much easier.

I doubt ken would really have to mess around with thermal paste unless he uses a third party heat sink, which he probably wouldn't need to since I doubt he'll be overclocking. I still have the OEM heat sink installed on my 2500k and I've had no problems with overheating at stock clock rates, except during the summer when the ambient temperature was ~90 degrees.

Ken: if you really want to game on PC I think building your own tower really is the way to go. You'll be able to get by with a pre-built, yes, but being able to select all of your own components, and knowing how everything goes together will be really helpful over the long run. Eventually you will have a hardware issue, or want to upgrade a component, or add more storage space or RAM, and doing it yourself really is much easier (and much less expensive) than taking it somewhere and having them do it.

If it's any consolation, a year and a half ago I didn't know anything about PCs, I had no idea how they worked or what parts were involved, but I was able to learn all of that stuff and build my own awesome gaming PC very easily, and it only took me a few hours one weekend morning! I even used those newegg videos someone linked to earlier in the thread. It really is very easy - don't let yourself be intimidated by technology :)

Posted on Jan 11, 2013 4:59:49 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 11, 2013 5:00:40 PM PST
sysgen says:
http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=493301

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2013 10:49:50 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 9, 2013 10:52:45 AM PST
Rockhardly says:
"That if you can plug in a lamp you can build your own computer. K has said the same thing to me, and he's pretty much right. I'm no tech genius, but was able to do it in one evening with a friend. And while its not QUITE as easy as plugging in a lamp, it's really not that hard."

This, plus it's fun.

I don't have a huge amount of experience, but I have had a Dell that I upgraded everything on except the motherboard, and I've build 2 systems from scratch.

The last system I built from scratch was in 2008 (my current system), and I was impressed with how much easier it was to build than the one I made prior (around 2005 or 2006 for a friend). Not only was there an abundance of instructions with each component (not that I used them - I was following on-line guides) - BUT, most cables were color-coded. On top of that, most cables in a computer CAN'T be plugged into the wrong place - they just won't fit.

The only place that might trip you up is if you're doing some funky things with the BiOS and/or working out your slave/master stuff with your hard drive(s), optical drive(s), etc. - and that only became an issue with me once I had 3 hard drives (and, by issue I mean I had to actually think about where I was plugging stuff).

I'm sure stuff has progressed since then, so it's probably easier. For instance, in 2005 when I built the one for my buddy, I was a bit weary about messing around with the BiOS, etc. - there were a lot of warnings about potentially "bricking" a motherboard if you messed up flashing the BiOS. Well, in the system I built in 2008, the motherboard had 2 BiOS's - the normal one, and the "OMG I just fried this thing" back-up BiOS.

The only part outside of that that actually gave me the willies (and still will when I build a new one, I know it) was the installation of the CPU and the heatsink. They're not hard, but in my case I was pretty exact about how much thermal paste to put on - and the particular heat sink I used REALLY attached to my board (very, very slightly bend it, in fact). In that little 5 minute part of the installation, I had about $200 in one hand I was installing into a socket on something that cost about $175-200. Messing up would have been a bit costly to me. :) Nearly 5 years later, my PC is still rockin, and all I've done to it since is upgraded to a Blu-Ray drive and swapped out the video card about every 2-3 years. I've also learned that computer components are a bit more rugged than they're given credit for. You can't use them to prop open a door, but they can take a little bend here and there.

I would check prices - for a time there, you could get a computer built by some on-line places for cheaper than you could build yourself, if you don't want to go the self-build route.

Besides the fun involved, though, I think the primary reason to build yourself is that you know EXACTLY what is in that box, and where to look first if you have a problem. In my case, for example, I know that the bottleneck is my CPU and the speeds on my motherboard - so I probably won't dump another $200 on a graphics card again to improve it. I also know that my memory was a bit skittish when I started, and I saw the blue screens that came from it, so if I have a weird thing happen - I know to test the memory first. Little things like that come from building your own and can not only save you time and money in dealing with your computer, it can make you feel more confident about knowing what to upgrade and what to tweak in the future.

Posted on Jan 8, 2013 6:42:15 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 8, 2013 6:43:14 PM PST
Daraksharnah says:
I see someone suggested the "Newegg: How to" videos on their youtube channel. I very very much recommend that. I'm a seasoned techie, and still learned a lot from those videos. I also suggest the site

http://forums.anandtech.com/

more precisely: the general hardware forum. They have 2 threads worth noting: Attention midrange system builders: http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2192841
that thread will give you a good place to start for pricing, but that build is generally 900-1000.

the other: http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=80121
copy the first post into a new thread and answer those questions. The regulars on the forums are very very helpful and the more detail you give them about what you want to do, the better they can help.

And lastly: Don't be scared of it, and stop thinking you're being "difficult" :) it can be scary, but take your time, watch videos, read forums, and just learn as much as you can at your own pace and soon enough, you'll have a kick @ss computer for much cheaper than any prebuilt.

Posted on Dec 31, 2012 5:06:29 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 1, 2013 7:17:43 AM PST
Cos says:
I went to Micro Center (They have a retail store near me and purchased several parts for my build, the rest from Newegg.com. I just build a PC for my nephew and I helped my friend build his PC
- Micro Center has the Core I5 3570k for 169.99 + when you buy a motherboard you save an additional $30.00 (Trust me when I say no one can touch this offer)
- The motherboard is very basic Z77 MSI entry level mATX, but does have enough to make it worth while and cost only $24.00 after discounts and rebates
- Motherboard is very easy to work with and as long as you can read a book, you should have no problem putting it together

Item SKU Item Description Quantity Per Item Price Total Price
999904 MSI Z77A-G41 1155 ATX 1 34.99
425470 INTEL BOX INTEL CORE I5-3570K 1 169.99
211334 CRUCIAL 8GB 4X2 D3 1600 DIMM CL9 1 36.99

Video Card: I would suggest going with an ATI 7770 minimum (around $100), GTX 560 TI ($139) or if you want to spend a little more go with a ATI 7870. I use Nvidia, but at this price range, nothing comes close. Though a GTX 660TI(get the TI version) is an excellent mid range card but will set you back about $280

Power Supply: (Minimum 550watt to drive a single high end video card) I would suggest going modular as it makes it a lot easier for first time builders

Power Supply Extension Cord
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812201020
(Extension Cord for Power Supply as most cases are now bottom mount and the 8 pin motherboard cable is up top)

Power Supply:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341017
(Cost a little more, but worth it. Modular PSU's make building PCs much quicker IMO)

Blu-Ray Drive
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827136252
(Blu-Ray Player DVD RW - Nice entry level Drive)

Computer Case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811235034
(Costs a little more, but comes with 4 fans where as less expensive cases tend to come with 1)

Video Card:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150604
(For this quote I went with the ATI 7870 which will get you through any game)

CPU/Motherboard/RAM $242 + Tax
Power Supply $ 60
Power Supply 8pin Extension Cable $ 5
Case $ 69
Blu-Ray $ 49
Hard Drive 1TB Segate $ 79
Video Card ATI 7870 $209
Windows 8 Upgrade 64 Bit Pro $ 39

Total Out the Door $750-760 range

You would have to use your existing Vista License to upgrade but its cheap

You could also substitute the 1TB Segate Drive with an SSD DRive for about 50 more, but you would only get about 120-160GB vs 1TB. If your existing HDD is SATA you might be able to do both and use the SDD as a Boot Drive. I did the quote with windows 8, which has a little learning curve. You can go with windows 7, but it would actually cost more to do so.

You can trim about $130.00 off the cost going with the ATI 7770 card and DVD-+RW drive

Please note there are people who will have a preference for ATI or Nvidia Cards and I only provided suggestions, if you do a little homework you can do what is best for you. A good resource is www.tomshardware.com

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012 11:03:30 AM PST
ken says:
I don't and ty. :( I didnt realize it was gonna be this difficult sighs.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012 11:01:03 AM PST
Finger says:
Thats not a bad computer, but K is right. That graphics card is a dud. Its also a bit expensive for what you're getting in my opinion. Don't worry, it'll work out. I know It's easy to get overwhelmed. But if you have until August, there's plenty of time to make your decisions.

If you have one nearby, Frys electronics occasionally has some great deals as well.

Posted on Dec 31, 2012 10:53:33 AM PST
ken says:
Arghh as charlie brown would say why cant this just freaking work lmfao

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012 10:50:37 AM PST
This graphics card: NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 640 1GB GDDR5 Is the equivalent of a laptop's graphics card.

Good processor, terrible waste of money on the video card.

Posted on Dec 31, 2012 10:49:38 AM PST
Newegg is my go-to computer shop when I buy PC stuff online. Great store, fast shipping, good prices, and excellent selection.

Sign up for their email subscription and you get weekly deals on games and gear as well.

It usually only takes a few weeks to order and receive a pre-built PC, so if you're planning on getting one by August you have a ton of time.

Prices on current generation gear will drop a lot by then.

Posted on Dec 31, 2012 10:47:33 AM PST
ken says:
Dell XPS X8500-4211BK Desktop (3.4 GHz Intel Core i7-3770 Processor, 12GB DDR3, 2TB HDD, Windows 8) Black

Im curious would this one would be better? A friend of mine said it would be good.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012 10:38:52 AM PST
Finger says:
No problem, happy to help. And I completely understand if you'd prefer to buy rather than build one. Just for kicks, you might want to watch those videos anyway. They're an interesting way to learn about PCs, and for me it was really helpful to actually see what they were talking about.

I just recently discovered Newegg too. I've been hearing about them for years, but hadn't bought anything there until these past few months. For future reference, they're really great. Good prices, and excellent customer service in case you ever do run into any problems. Let us know if you have any questions or ideas.
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Initial post:  Dec 30, 2012
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