Building a computer

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 27, 2010 8:25 PM GMT
    So my crappy laptop has reached the point where it can no longer play the latest video games, and therefore is of no use to me outside of work.

    I would like to build a new computer that is capable of playing new games like SC2 and WH40K2. How much would I expect to pay for a computer like that?

    Note; I am not looking to build the best computer in the world, however a decent one would be great.
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    Jul 27, 2010 8:33 PM GMT
    It all starts with an Intel Core i7 and ends with two ATI or NVIDIAs running on Cross Fire or SLI respectively. Some of the new boards from ASUS even feauture 3 PCI Express for ur Graphics Card. Watch out when u purchase ur Power supply make sure is somewhere around 700W. Total price for all of these components plus the case, 8GB DDR3 and a decent Hard Drive should be around $2000.
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    Jul 27, 2010 9:29 PM GMT
    I agree, although you don't necessarily NEED 2/3 gpus, but it wouldn't hurt. I have 6 gb ram, and my computer feels fine, you can cut some corners to mark the price down. As you spend mroe and more money it seems like you get less performance, but don't cut too many corners icon_razz.gif But yeah, you can build yourself a ncie computer for 1,500-2,000. Do your research though, I spent a long time reading up on motherboards, etc, comparing prices (some sites have good/bad shipping, discounts, rebates, etc), reading several guides on how to build so I didn't mess up (mess up the cpu, and you're down a lot of money). but yeah, there are magazines and guides on-line that were about building your own computer and they'd have a recession article, a medium range article, and a really expensive one. As I said, just do your research and you'll figure out what you want.

    And I built a desktop...I'm not familiar with laptops, if that's what you are planning to do...although I tried looking for a gpu for my laptop and had issues, so maybe building laptops isn't very common.

    *edit*

    i bought a lot of my stuff off newegg, but when I got my defective 40lb case...they could replace it, but gues who has to pay shipping? 40lbs is expensive. try to find places that will give you a full/partial shipping refund. a lot of computer parts reviews turn up less than perfect because people get defective parts (i read a lot of defective reviews on RAM). I got lucky with everything else other than the case ;)
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    Jul 27, 2010 9:31 PM GMT
    It's been years since I built a gaming PC, but my in previous experience, the ballpark of $2000 will pretty much get you the basics to run most graphics-intense games with good frame rate (60+ fps). That does NOT include the monitor.

    Edit: My current PC is an Asus which I paid $850 for on sale (not including the Blu-ray burner I installed later). It runs games very smoothly on a medium graphics setting. I run Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator and Microsoft Flight Sim X...both extremely graphics-intense.
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    Jul 27, 2010 10:49 PM GMT
    paulflexes saidIt's been years since I built a gaming PC, but my in previous experience, the ballpark of $2000 will pretty much get you the basics to run most graphics-intense games with good frame rate (60+ fps). That does NOT include the monitor.


    Yeah, that sounds about right. I recommend buying a PC building book, it really helps.
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    Jul 28, 2010 1:31 AM GMT
    Chainers saidSo my crappy laptop has reached the point where it can no longer play the latest video games, and therefore is of no use to me outside of work.

    I would like to build a new computer that is capable of playing new games like SC2 and WH40K2. How much would I expect to pay for a computer like that?

    Note; I am not looking to build the best computer in the world, however a decent one would be great.

    Most of your money will go towards a video card. But I think you can do it for around $1000, if you want to stay on the low end. Here are some rough numbers..

    Core i3 CPU + motherboard.. $300
    8GB DDR3 RAM.. $230
    1TB Western Digital Caviar Black hard drive.. $100
    computer case.. buy the cheapest one, $50 ~ $100
    power supply.. don't get anything less than 500W, more Watts are better, $80 - $130
    video card.. $200 - $400

    If you want to save a few bucks, then buy last year's top of the line video card. I don't know why people spend big bucks on the latest and greatest video card, especially when the price drops to almost half if you wait a few months.
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    Jul 28, 2010 1:50 AM GMT
    2k is way too much. I'd recommend saving your mouse/keyboard, monitor and maybe your case. Just replace the mobo, processor, ram and video card. I think you can do it for around 400-600.

    Check the Tom's hardware building guides. They're amazing. They do a good job getting you the most bang for your buck.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/cpu-gpu-overclock,2659.html
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    Jul 28, 2010 5:31 AM GMT
    It is way cheaper to buy a computer then build one these days so why would you want to. The new imac introduced today is 3.ghtz for $1100. PCs
    are of course even cheaper .
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    Jul 28, 2010 5:39 AM GMT
    it would be less hassle to just buy a gaming comp. Depending on which side of the fence you sit, Mac / Dell provide great gaming computers, though (solely mt opinion) macs are just expensive for no reason at all; Dells are cinder blocks when it comes to gaming / processor & RAM intensive activities and i love Dell for that.
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    Jul 28, 2010 1:04 PM GMT
    The type of hardware you buy, and the quality of said hardware are probably the most important factors here. Building a $2000 or even a $4000 computer with the wrong parts will leave you with nothing but stability problems and crappy performance out of the box.

    I would recommend that you do it right the first time, even if you need to wait and save some money. For a processor I would recommend at least the Core i7 930. If it were me I would probably go for the 970 and just look for a smoking deal.

    As for Motherboards I would stay away from Asus. I know that there are many people that have had good luck with them, but there are many people (myself included) that have had nightmare experiences with them. EVGA and Gigabyte are both awesome brands.

    I echo what Charlitos said about having at least a dual graphics card setup. The graphics cards nowadays do alot more than just push pixels in a game and thus they are essential to having the fast-running PC you're looking for. A lot of motherboards now support both nVidia's SLi or ATI's Crossfire X. If it were me I would probably opt for nVidia due to their edge over ATI in continued driver support for non-current models.

    When it comes to memory this is hit or miss. There are several brands like Corsair, G Skill, PNY, Patriot, and OCZ that are consistently great products but they to have their share of bad out-of-the-box parts. I tried Mushkin's enhanced memory on my last build which is now several years old and it has been the best memory which I have owned.

    Hard drives are the biggest bottleneck in a PC today. This is the single point in the system which will yield the greatest increases in speed an overall performance. If you want to go with a fast traditional hard drive I would recommend the Western Digital Raptor. It is 10K RPM, 2.5 inches, and most have a single or double platter which yield very good speeds for booting the OS and loading programs. For the best speed without getting ridiculously expensive you can try a Solid-State hard drive. You really do pay for what you get here and they need special attention paid to them when doing things like defragmenting or even installing the OS. I think that 2 raptors running in a RAID 0 are usually the best in terms of all-around performance.

    If you listen to a lot of music, I would recommend a sound card. Onboard sound processors are great to get the job done, but they can distort and introduce interference into the sound due to their close proximity to other electronic circuits which produce a high amount of noise.

    After selecting you hardware, there is a whole other set of guidelines for installing the OS and then tweaking it to take full advantage of your hardware and not be bogged down by needless programs and processes.

    I hope this helped, message me if you have a question or need help.

    -Cheers
  • nhnelson

    Posts: 113

    Jul 28, 2010 1:21 PM GMT
    Alpha13 saidIt is way cheaper to buy a computer then build one these days so why would you want to. The new imac introduced today is 3.ghtz for $1100. PCs
    are of course even cheaper .


    This is the most untrue statement of all time. Buying a computer with the kind of power that's being disscussed on this thread would cost you leaps and bounds more to buy pre-assembled. And even then, you're probably just paying somebody to put the parts together for you. Believe it or not, processor speed is not the only factor that determines a computer's value-- it all depends on what one is using it for. Lastly, a mac is perhaps the worst choice one could make if one is looking to play serious games.
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    Jul 28, 2010 2:08 PM GMT
    I'd just add to go with a minimum of an i5 (not an i3) CPU.
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    Jul 30, 2010 3:48 PM GMT
    xrichx said
    Chainers saidSo my crappy laptop has reached the point where it can no longer play the latest video games, and therefore is of no use to me outside of work.

    I would like to build a new computer that is capable of playing new games like SC2 and WH40K2. How much would I expect to pay for a computer like that?

    Note; I am not looking to build the best computer in the world, however a decent one would be great.

    Most of your money will go towards a video card. But I think you can do it for around $1000, if you want to stay on the low end. Here are some rough numbers..

    Core i3 CPU + motherboard.. $300
    8GB DDR3 RAM.. $230
    1TB Western Digital Caviar Black hard drive.. $100
    computer case.. buy the cheapest one, $50 ~ $100
    power supply.. don't get anything less than 500W, more Watts are better, $80 - $130
    video card.. $200 - $400

    If you want to save a few bucks, then buy last year's top of the line video card. I don't know why people spend big bucks on the latest and greatest video card, especially when the price drops to almost half if you wait a few months.


    I bought another PC recently, of course by choosing individual parts rather than going for a bundle(bundles are manufactured by choosing the cheapest components out there, they are just crap and definitely more expensive). I wanned something semi decent nothing crazy. This is what my bill says:

    MAIN BOARD - ASUS P7P55D, CROSS FIRE AND SLI SUPPORT - $164.99

    POWER SUPPLY - THERMALTAKE TR2 600W - $69.99

    PROCESSOR - INTEL CORE I7 860 - $284.99

    CASE - COOLER MASTER ELITE 330 - $42.99

    AFTERMARKET - COOLER MASTER HYPER - $14.99

    RAM - CORSAIR XMS3 4GB DDR3 - $124.99

    GRAPHICS CARD - NVIDIA GFORCE GTX 460 - $219.99

    HARD DRIVE - SEAGATE BARRACUDA 500GB - $39.99

    there you go $800 plus taxes(Montreal - 13%) and warranty near $1000
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    Jul 30, 2010 4:09 PM GMT
    As much as I love iMacs, they are definitely not the way to go. (Alpha13)
    An iMac is just like a macbook without the added portability and a larger screen, so it is far from a good gaming system... unless you pay for the most expensive one, which would still be sub-par.
    If you're going to use it for gaming I would recommend that you stay away from notebooks/iMacs because you cannot upgrade any components of real importance, making it so that you must buy a new one every few years... (not many..) they are also more likely to overheat because of the lack of a proper cooling system.

    To the OP:
    If you are looking to play a specific graphic intensive game I would suggest that you use google. icon_razz.gif Type in the name of the game and then custom rig (something along those lines) or join a gaming forum and ask them there for the best possible results/suggestions. icon_wink.gif


    I envy you guys that are able to spend that much on gaming computers.
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    Jul 31, 2010 1:32 AM GMT
    how about an AMD phenom ll x6 , or maybe even an x4 955 and overclock it ?

    i'm also looking into parts to build myself a new comp.
    i am considering the above cpu and an XFX radeon 5850 .

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    Jul 31, 2010 1:11 PM GMT
    Chainers saidI would like to build a new computer that is capable of playing new games like SC2 and WH40K2. How much would I expect to pay for a computer like that?


    I would start by looking at the recommended (not the minimum) system requirements for both games to start off with.