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Customer Discussions > PC Game forum

What is a gaming computer? Need help .

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Showing 1-25 of 66 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 30, 2012, 10:57:42 AM PST
ken says:
I have a tower that sucks ass basically the graphics card is crappy and only works on some games its not that fast and slows down very easily.I need to replace my tower with a powerful fast one with a really good graphics card that will play any pc game otherwise I am screwed.

I have asked about my tower and given all the specs which are as follows if this helps any:

Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Service pack 2.


Graphics card: ATI Radeon HD 3200

Processor: AMD Phenom (tm) 8450e Triple-Core Processor 2.10 GHz

Model # Inspiron 546S

Monitor: Dell S2409w ( Analog)
DirectX 11

Memory: 7934MB RAM

Please help me .

Posted on Dec 30, 2012, 12:17:40 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 31, 2012, 3:39:34 AM PST
How much are you looking to spend on a new computer?

Question 2: Can you plug in a lamp?

EDIT: I can see no one understands the joke. Downvote button is that way ------>

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 30, 2012, 2:45:57 PM PST
ken says:
I was asking for help not sarcasm .

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 30, 2012, 3:15:02 PM PST
And I was asking for more information, as your post above was difficult enough to decipher. Your current build is too old to be of any use after upgrades. You'd need to build an entirely new rig.

Posted on Dec 30, 2012, 5:15:23 PM PST
WeaKeN says:
that computer you got there is a big lump of poo, for gaming.

you need to be paying at least $500 for a decent gaming tower.

all you're asking for is help. what kind of help do you need. you haven't given us any information other than your computer sucks, the specs of your computer, and you need help.

like Capt said, you need a new tower. ask a more precise question.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 3:38:04 AM PST
Asking for more information gets you downvotes in the PCGF, careful! :P

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 4:14:39 AM PST
Finger says:
Don't feel too bad, I was in the same boat up until a couple of months ago. I don't know the exact details of your system, but I think the point here is that you have 2 options: You can either upgrade your components or start over with a new machine.

Upgrading may not be a wise choice, since it sounds like your computer is at least 4 years old, perhaps older? If that is the case, your money spent upgrading may not go very far. You may quickly reach the limit of what your current computer can do without upgrading a lot of components, taking your costs through the roof without much purpose.

Your second option is to start fresh by either buying a new computer, or building your own. Buying one pre-built is obviously the easiest route, you look online and buy what you want. Or you can research a bit, buy all of your components, and put it together yourself. Building your own will help ensure a system thats exactly what you want/need with high quality components at a cost far below comparable pre-built systems. It may sound daunting, but it can be done. Believe me, I just did it for the first time and couldn't be happier.

By the way, I think that's what Capt K was referring to; 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. So with a few hundred bucks you can build a system light years ahead of where you are today. Keep that in mind when you're weighing your alternatives.

If you want to just try a couple of quick upgrades, thats fine. we'll need a bit more info about your current system to help. If you want to start fresh, thats fine too. Whichever way you choose, think it over and let us know. There are lots of knowledgeable people here who can help you. I'm not one of them, but was in your same position very recently and things worked out very well for me. Good Luck!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 4:24:23 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 31, 2012, 4:25:05 AM PST
Great options. I second either buying a pre-built or building your own. The OPs current parts would create several bottlenecks that would severely limit any upgrades on the system.

I could see throwing some newer parts into an i3 build, but a 2.1ghz tri-core AMD is going to hamper any gaming even with a newer graphics card. Replacing the CPU means a motherboard overhaul, as I doubt that motherboard is AM3+ socket compatible.

@Ken, To find out if your RAM is compatible with a newer system, we'd need to know what the model number on it is. You're probably better off buying new RAM when you upgrade the motherboard and CPU. RAM is super cheap.

The biggest bottleneck in your system is your graphics card. The ATI Radeon HD 3200 is horrid for gaming.

I'll ask again, what's your budget? We can't really do anything for you and make any recommendations without knowing your budget.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 4:37:57 AM PST
Finger says:
I was thinking much the same thing. A triple-core Phenom on whatever motherboard Dell put in there... Sounds like the options would be pretty limited. Over the past couple of months I've seen some incredible deals on new AMD 4- 6- and 8- series CPU/mobo combos that would probably get him a lot of bang for the buck. I'm almost sorry I didn't go that route myself.

@Ken: Is that one of those really slim Dell towers? If so, you might not have much room to add anything like a modern video card anyway.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 4:41:05 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 31, 2012, 4:45:21 AM PST
Ouch, I forgot to look. It is a slim. The HD 3200 is an integrated card on the tri-core CPU. Honestly his only upgrade path on that unit is a pretty low end dedicated GPU, but he's still going to get extremely low quality out of today's games.

@Ken - In all honesty, those slim-line dells are pretty terrible for gaming. I'm very anti-dell though, so I have a huge bias. Once we have your budget range we can make some recommendations. I don't think there is really anything we can do with your current set-up. A new tower for the current parts would offer no benefit as your current parts have so few upgrade paths. If all you did was replace your tower, you're basically upgrading from a small toilet to a larger toilet. There's just more room for crap in it.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:14:36 AM PST
ken says:
Ty for the helpful response that I am not sure of.It looks kinda bulky maybe a little slim. Sighs I have a feeling I am gonna have to go for a completely new computer and I cant afford that right now I didnt realize how difficult this was going to be. I went to walmart best buy staples i went all over yesterday with no luck.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:15:37 AM PST
ken says:
Yes it does suck ive known this for years . See ive found some on Amazon gaming computers but from what I am reading it wont help either way being a dell .Im so confused.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:16:04 AM PST
ken says:
Nods it is indeed we bought this at walmart back in 2009 .

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:17:20 AM PST
WeaKeN says:
what kind of games are you looking to play? how much money are you willing to spend? do you want to buy a computer that is already built for you or do you want to build the computer yourself?

just because the computer is built by Dell, doesn't mean it can't play video games.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:17:44 AM PST
ken says:
Well we are definitely not rich so I am not sure in that regard I just want to find a computer that can play games on it really well.When I bought this back in 2009 I was naive because I thought well if it can play second life or something like that then maybe it can play the others.... face palm to that. Ive tried that site and almost every game I have can not be played and this processor is also too slow for many of them. Sighs.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:18:56 AM PST
ken says:
Well ty for the clarification I dont understand a lot of this and Im not afraid to admit that.Id rather admit that then screw something up thinking I can do it all .

Sighs I dont know maybe 800 if that. With the economy we are one of many struggling if you know what I mean.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:23:58 AM PST
ken says:
Okay do you need the model number for the tower or the monitor? As I said im afraid this stuff is very confusing to me. I believe the tower model # though is C0305J1.

The computer is ugh no clue.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:25:38 AM PST
WeaKeN says:
if you're willing to pay $800 you can get a decent gaming computer.

what type of games are you looking to play? do you want to play top of the line games with really good graphics?

i understand that you don't know much about gaming computers. that's fine, many people don't. if you know anyone that has experience with building computers, you could have them build you a pretty good computer for $800.

i'm building a computer for a family member within a month or two. it is going to cost him $500-$600, but it will be able to play any video game that is out right now.

usually if you buy a pre-built computer from Dell, HP, etc., they are going to be more expensive than actually building it yourself.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:26:28 AM PST
800 gives you a lot more options than you'd think these days.

If you build your own, $800 can get you an amazing computer that will run every single game on the market in HD visuals. You could (often) do the same with $600 if you're careful with what you purchase and buy during sales.

If you buy a pre-built, you're looking at a mid-range system for around $800 that will probably have to be upgraded (often just the graphics card) within a year or two.

The question about the lamp earlier is in regards to building your own PC. A PC in 2013 is a LOT easier to build than a PC in 2003. It may not be as "simple as plugging in a lamp", but it really is not as difficult as everyone thinks it is. You're just plugging in all the parts. That said, I understand if you don't want to build your own. Just know that you won't be getting something as fast as it could be for your money. Many times pre-built PC shops cut corners in some components like the power supply.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:26:59 AM PST
Don't worry about that one. I double checked everything that comes in that PC and it would be better to buy an entirely new system or build it from scratch.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:28:51 AM PST
ken says:
That sucks. :( I have not the first clue of how to build my own computer id screw it up royally im afraid lol

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:32:18 AM PST
Don't worry, there are still options available to you.

A recommendation I have when buying a prebuilt is to make sure you "future proof" the most important part when buying a PC - the processor.

If you get a good processor, decent RAM, and a good power supply, you can upgrade just the graphics card down the road and still stay current with new releases. PCs aren't being upgraded in leaps and bounds like they were years ago, so getting good core components will provide years of benefits to you with smaller upgrades down the road.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:32:26 AM PST
ken says:
do you want to play top of the line games with really good graphics?

Very much so. :) Ive never ever been able to do that ever.

One of the many pc games I have up in my closet from years ago are GTA 4 never touched Skyrim from last year Oblivion Saints Row 2 and 3 among many others they cost too much money as it is and if I cant even play any of them then that would just be a waste of money truthfully.

Nods you are correct my mom and I were online yesterday looking at Amazon and I couldnt believe all the negative reviews seemed to outweigh the positives of many many many of these gaming computers.

Alienware interested me for instance at first until I saw the prices for them I cant afford 1,000s and 1,000s of dollars especially after reading about them online and how they are nowhere near as good as they are made to look. I think thats the problem sometimes my ADD gets distracted by the oooh look new shiny looks cool aspect and thats not important to me at all.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:33:43 AM PST
ken says:
That sounds like a very good idea could you possibly tell me how to go about doing that if you dont mind? I dont mean to be a bother sorry if so ive just really wanted to be able to actually play pc games for years only ones ive been able to play are sims stuff basically.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 31, 2012, 7:34:22 AM PST
Alienware = Dell. It's the same system with the same internals, but a different case, some different software, and a big "alienware" name tag.
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Discussion in:  PC Game forum
Participants:  18
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Initial post:  Dec 30, 2012
Latest post:  Mar 12, 2013

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