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Psy
I'm looking at this pre-built gaming machine at overclockers: http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct....rodid=FS-086-OE

It's a bit expensive, but I'm willing to pay something around that as it's been a good few years since I properly upgraded my pc.

Are the specs on that machine worth the money? If not, what do you suggest I do to tweak it to make it better, without increasing the price.

I used to be pretty in-the-know with pc components, but I've not been following them for a year or so, so I don't have a clue what's decent anymore. I just assume the most expensive stuff is the best...

Cheers.
anomalous_result
IMO definately not. For that money you ought to be looking at i7 920 6Gig of DDR3 RAM. The 920 can OC to 4 GHz np with a nice cooler. The weak link in this Scan system is the graphics, but it mirrors bit-tech's system recommendations. If you can wait until the new year graphics cards will be better value, the 5870 just got launched, the first DirectX 11 card.

Your mileage may vary. I'm trying to hold out for nvidia to launch the gt300 cards but I may be a while.

edit: IMO the only two choices in intel processors atm are the i5 750 or the i7 920. The 750 is great and will be increasingly good value over the coming months as more motherboards/coolers are realeased. In benchmarks it appears to do very well in games, the 860 being a fair whack (some 70) more but for seemingly little gain. Particularly if you're interested in overclocking a little. But the i7 920 is just better in terms of its overall windows/apps/multithreaded ability and cheaper (by a smidge I think) than the 860. Also the i7 860 is a bit of a con as it's still the 1156 chipset (like the i5 750) rather than the i7 920's 1366. I know! AMD are nowhere atm. In-depth review here.
DonkeyTits
anomalous result is respectably correct about the i7 920/ the 1366 chipset.

A note to consider: I read that the i7 series prefers ram setups in 3. They call it triple channel memory. 3, 6, 9, 12 are supposedly optimal. Now, I do not know the specifics, but this is how people appear to be building their pc's, so look into that before you buy/build a pc.

The harddrive on that pc: Seagate is a fair brand, but not one of the best rated. I believe Western Digital is rated better in most cases. If I remember correct, Seagate offers a 3 year warranty and WD offers a 5 year.

That 295 gtx gpu is basically the best graphics card on the market (and is overkill). However, the 5870x2 is going to be released very soon. It should retail for about 600 usd, but will be so unfathomably overkill it will last for years to come. I don't know anything about the gt 300 series card(s), but it's safe to say it/they will be rapingly overkill as well.

The Windows 7 upgrade voucher they offer is a nice voucher, but not worth a ton of $$$.

I haven't used any Antec parts, but I've heard great things about their cases. Same deal with Asus.

I'm using a Corsair powersupply and 6 gigs of their ddr3, I love their stuff and would definitely recommend them.

Just search around Newegg.com for reviews as well as Youtube. Youtube has a surprising amount of people reviewing pc parts.



If you wanted to go even more extreme, you could consider getting a solid state hard disc. However, storage is limited (in comparison to standard hdds) and the price per gigabyte is VERY expensive. Their two main benefits are 1.No moving parts/shock resistant 2.Read time is MUCH faster. People will get a SSD for games, OS, and other primary applications, and use a conventional hdd for their storage needs.
anomalous_result
IMO the 295 isn't worth it. The drivers are still flaky, particularly if you play fallout 3 with 4xAA, apparently. Same goes for 4870x2, it's like the best card is entirely dependent on the games you play which makes choices tricky. I'd take the 285 if you twisted my arm wink.gif

You're partially right about the memory thing, but the new i7s borked everything. Intel in their infinite wisdom named everything wrong. The i5 750, i7 860 and 870 are codenamed Lynnfield and use dual-channel memory (ie you install your memory sticks in pairs). The i7 920 (and up) is a Bloomfield and its architecture (and one reason why it's quick) is based around triple-channel memory (ie you install your memory in threes, so 3x2Gb sticks). To confuse things further the next intel chips will be 6 cores, operating on the 1366 chipset but called i9!!! My head just ahsploded.
Psy
I appreciate the info guys, although most of that just looked like a bunch of numbers to me...

If you were going to build a PC from scratch (requiring all components apart from stuff like monitors, keyboards, mice and an operating system), what would you go for if you had a budget of around 1500?

I would prefer an Intel chip with one or more Nvidia cards, but other than that I'm open to ideas. Thanks.
DuPz0r
Definitely invest some cash in an Antec case. I just bought one recently, and my PC stays at around 30 degrees most of the time.
anomalous_result
The gt300 has been said to be released this year so if you can wait it might be worth it. Otherwise this is a ripping system that I would buy if I had the money. I just get a bit confused because the card needs 2x6 pin power supplies and the PSU comes with 2x6+2 PCI-E connectors which I'm guessing is what's required....

NB: This is the internets, I may or may not know what I'm talking about, better to treat me as if I don't. Don't get mad if the cooler doesn't fit (although I specifically chose the case to be slightly oversized for a mid-tower as the 5870 card is long and the cooler tall) or if it doesn't work/items aren't compatible with each other or you're missing bits. With that said here's my build from scan.co.uk prices as of 5th October 2009.

Link No......Description.........................................................Inc VAT

LN22515 650W Be Quiet Dark Power PRO............................101.07

LN25261 Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5........................................192.25

LN25239 Intel i7 920, D0 SLEBJ S1366... OEM......................209.50

LN26144 120GB OCZ Technology, Vertex SSD.....................275.54

LN27195 Titan Fenrir TTC-NK85TZ 120mm... Cooler..............25.86

LN27443 6GB (3x2GB) Corsair XMS3 DDR3 (1600) CAS 7..... 112.84

LN28188 Akasa AK-MX010 Dual 2.5" SSD/HDD 3.5" mount.....6.31

LN27867 Coolermaster HAF 922, Mid Tower Case..................88.77

LN28746 1TB Samsung HD103SJ Spinpoint F3.......................57.01

LN28922 1GB Sapphire HD 5870, PCI-E 2.0...........................308.41

Total inc 10.41 p+p:.............................................................1,389.64

I think that's everything you need... Can't see any glaring ommissions.

edit: missed an optical drive off... you can either use the one you've got or spend 20. Unless you want a RW Blu-ray which is like 100+. Also missed a soundcard but onboard sound is fine imo, that might be an issue or not for you.
Psy
I think I've decided on my specs after some help from a friend... I'm probably going for this, but overclocking the processor to 4 Ghz if I can.

anomalous_result
Looks great. The only thing I'd query is the HDDs. For 120 you're nudging into SSD territory, which whilst not giving you loads of space (And the more you fill it the slower it gets) are really rather quick. Also I'd stick with the samsung F3 for storage if it comes from where you're getting everything else from, it's twice as big as the seagate, cheaper and faster, here's a review where IMO it compares favourably to the velociraptor, especially when you consider it's half the price.

Also with Dragon Age: Origins just a month away I'm a leetle bit jealous =p
DonkeyTits
That build looks better. Just make sure that case has enough room to 'easily' fit the gpu. I don't know if it does/doesn't, just double check.
Pieface
QUOTE (DonkeyTits @ Oct 8 2009, 09:37 PM) *
That build looks better. Just make sure that case has enough room to 'easily' fit the gpu. I don't know if it does/doesn't, just double check.


They're huge cases anyway, should be fine I'd think.
Psy
Had to put the order on hold because they don't have any more cases in stock, but it will be big enough for the graphics card. Their website says the gfx card is available for pre-order though, so no idea when it's actually released. I thought it was already out...

Also I decided to go for 2 of the 1 TB Samsung F3's, rather than a velociraptor and 2 other 500 GB hard drives.
anomalous_result
QUOTE (Psy @ Oct 9 2009, 09:06 AM) *
Had to put the order on hold because they don't have any more cases in stock, but it will be big enough for the graphics card. Their website says the gfx card is available for pre-order though, so no idea when it's actually released. I thought it was already out...

Also I decided to go for 2 of the 1 TB Samsung F3's, rather than a velociraptor and 2 other 500 GB hard drives.

Good idea. The cards are out I'm sure, I think they're just low on stock and racking up back orders, so as soon as they get delivery they're already sold.
Psy


All ordered smile.gif
Pieface
Where did you order it from?
anomalous_result
You know you ordered 1 F3 and two Seagates right?
Sheep
A guy needs plenty of space smile.gif i jsut have 1 1TB and 1 250GB internal hdd's and they do me fine
anomalous_result
I was just checking as it's contrary to what he said just a few posts earlier.
Psy
Yeah, my mate recommended I get the seagates because the new models are supposed to be pretty fast, especially when RAIDed.

Anyway here's my specs: Psyware's Xfire Profile
Pieface
I need to update my Xfire specs. Lol my old PC was pretty poor.
Inkace
I need a little help here and since I'm new to the forums I can't post a new thread so I thought this the best thread to ask.

I have a 2.4 Ghz duel core pentium, 2 gig ram and a Nvidia geforce gts 250 gfx card.

My problem is that GTA IV runs quite laggy and seems to be draining all of my CPU. Is there a way to get more power from my CPU? I was pretty sure it could handle this game quite well.
Pieface
QUOTE (Inkace @ Dec 21 2009, 07:31 AM) *
I need a little help here and since I'm new to the forums I can't post a new thread so I thought this the best thread to ask.

I have a 2.4 Ghz duel core pentium, 2 gig ram and a Nvidia geforce gts 250 gfx card.

My problem is that GTA IV runs quite laggy and seems to be draining all of my CPU. Is there a way to get more power from my CPU? I was pretty sure it could handle this game quite well.


Your graphics card is your main problem. The 250 just isn't that great a card. There's a huge leap from the 250 to the 260. What size is your PSU as well? (Although I shouldn't see that being a problem unless it's shocking).

If you want more power from your CPU you should either Overclock it, or just buy a new one.
Inkace
It's definately the CPU. Slight overclock and I get marginal better performance but I don't really know what I'm doing. Just upping things related to voltage by slight increments in the BIOS

The GFX card is 1GB and during the game it runs at 50-60% whereas the CPU is running at 95% before being overclocked and 85% with the overclocking I've given it.
Zacko
QUOTE (Psy @ Oct 12 2009, 08:09 AM) *
Yeah, my mate recommended I get the seagates because the new models are supposed to be pretty fast, especially when RAIDed.

Anyway here's my specs: Psyware's Xfire Profile


You lucky bastard.

I get far too distracted by Steam sales to ever actually buy a new PC...
The Awesome One
Speaking of specs, how do you know what your specs are? I dont know how to find them out. My brother set my PC up, he never told me anything about it. unsure.gif
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