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Build Your Own PC

Discussion in 'Techno-Magic' started by Harbourboy, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Try pasting the URL into your browser rather than clicking the link.
     
  2. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    So, the Intel Pentium EE 840 is a complete dog and the Intel Core 2 Due E6600 is a complete legend? Am I reading that graph correctly?
     
  3. Taza

    Taza Weird Modmaker Veteran

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    Pretty much.

    I don't really know where Ziad is getting his info from, because all the benchmarks I've seen place the Core 2 Duo far beyond other processors of the same price. And compared to other processors of the same power from AMD, it uses significantly less energy.

    Of course, you can find a processor using less power and a processor that is cheaper from AMD, but the price/performance ratio of the Core 2 Duo E6600 beats any AMD processor on the market at the moment.
     
  4. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    It's pretty simple... on the lower end of the performance scale (slower CPUs), AMD has the better price/performance ratio. Once you go into the middle to higher range, Intels are a better choice at the moment.

    With Intel Core 2 Duo CPUs, you have to take into account that you'll also have to buy significantly more expensive RAM than if you'd gone with a lower end AMD CPU, as well as a more expensive motherboard (boards supporting Intel CPUs are usually more expensive by default). So, significantly more expensive CPU + more expensive RAM + more expensive motherboard = significantly higher price total.

    It all depends on how much you're willing to spend on the CPU right now. When I was buying a new computer recently, I've rather bought a lower end AMD CPU (3500+), which can still handle all the current new games just fine, but it's very cheap. I've intentionally stuck to this one because I know that in a year or two I'll be able to upgrade the CPU for a new AMD for very little money for a significant boost in performance.

    So this is another option worth considering.
     
  5. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    So are you saying that there is a risk that I might load up on Core 2 Duo gear and find that if I want to upgrade in a few years that it won't be easy? If I got a Core 2 Due E6400 now, could that play NWN2? And could I get a 6800 in a couple of years (when the price has come down) and just plug it in?

    Wow, look at me using all this jargon..... can't believe I know the code words for silicon chips.
     
  6. khaavern Gems: 14/31
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    If it helps, I would also vote for the Core 2 duo.
    And I would not plan on getting a weaker processor now, with the intention to upgrade. IMHO, upgrading the processor is a tricky business. First of all, you have to make sure that the motherboard you get now will support the new processor; then, if the MB bus is too slow, there is no point in buying a faster processor anyhow.

    At the moment, either the E6400 and E6600 Intels are very good value for the money. Of course, if you can afford the extra 100 bucks, go with the faster one.
     
  7. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    OK, so what practical difference would I notice in my day to day computing between an E6400 and an E6600? Is it as simple as "stuff happens a bit faster"? What are the specific things I would likely notice the most?
     
  8. khaavern Gems: 14/31
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    It doesn't really makes much of a difference, unless you are running some computationally intensive applications (like computer games, video editing, SETI at Home, or stuff like this :) ). Web browsing, email and word processing will work as fast with either processor.
     
  9. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    OK - how about this video card? Geforce 7900GS 256MB PCI-E DVI. Is this going to be able to handle NWN2 easily?
     
  10. Chandos the Red

    Chandos the Red This Wheel's on Fire

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    I'd go with the Core 2 processors, as they are a better value than the current AMD lot. Take a look here:

    http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=2802

    The 7900GS is a fairly fast card. Nevertheless, consider the 7900GTO: it is much faster and it is 512MB instead of the 256. Also, it is quieter and the advanced cooling system keeps it very cool, even under the load of NW2, which I've been running on it on all night (all settings maxed out) and it runs smooth as silk on my E6600 Core 2 system.

    The downside: It is 50.00 more than the GS and it takes up two slots instead of one because of the huge cooling fan and sinks. It also requires at least a 450 watt power supply. Again take a look at the numbers:

    http://www.firingsquad.com/hardware/evga_e-geforce_7900_gto/
     
  11. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    khaavern, a brand new motherboard for AM2 CPUs will support quite a few down the line - certainly anything that will come down to an acceptable price over the next year and a half. With Intel it's more of an issue, since new motherboards there are usually required even more often than with AMD.

    But if you're not looking for the biggest bang for the least buck, Intel is the way to go anyway, so this discussion is meaningless. However, in Harbourboy's case, I don't think that it's warranted that he spend significantly more money than necessary, since he's basically buying a new system to run NWN2 and nothing else. I know that given how little time I have to play (and that I hardly play anything else than D&D PC games), buying a high end Core 2 Duo system now would be a waste of money.

    As with cars, some people always like to shell out a large sum of money to have the latest and greatest, regardless of whether it actually makes sense based on their usage of it or not. There's nothing wrong with that - if you have enough money, all the power to you.

    But based on what I've understood, Harbourboy isn't exactly rolling in money (and won't require the new system for much more than NWN2), so from my perspective, telling him to buy an expensive graphics card, CPU, RAM, PSU and motherboard isn't very sensible.

    NWN2 is a real hog with the high system requirements, so I'm not sure it's a very good model to base the new system on. To match the requirements, sure - but not to go overly beyond them yet. If it turns out to be necessary, you can upgrade your computer in a couple of years by replacing the graphics and the CPU for faster ones, or by adding more RAM. Doing it then, when you actually need it, will be significantly cheaper than overbuying now.
     
  12. Ziad

    Ziad I speak in rebuses Veteran

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    Thanks Tal, that's precisely the point I was trying to make.

    Keep in mind that the price difference between AMD and Intel will vary between countries. What I'm talking about applies to the lowest CPU prices you can get in Scotland. Naturally, if you go to a more expensive shop, you might find that Intel is slightly cheaper than AMD (and both much more expensive than the cheapest shop). And of course things will vary in the US and New Zealand.
     
  13. Barmy Army

    Barmy Army Simple mind, simple pleasures... Adored Veteran

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    Bloody hell, if Gaz wasn't confused BEFORE trying this out, he certainly must be now!
     
  14. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Not sure what that means. Why is that bad?

    Thanks again for all the comments. Following on from Tal's comments, is it safe to say that NWN2 is going to be far and away the most hardware intensive thing I would use this PC for? Just as reference point, what would be an example of something that would require even MORE power than playing NWN2?
     
  15. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    It means that the card wastes one empty slot on the motherboard where another card could otherwise be. But these days when in most new systems the only card filling the slots is the graphics one, this is a non-issue.

    I'd say until Dragon Age, NWN3 or BG3 came out, most likely.

    If you stick to D&D/BioWare CRPGs, see above. Otherwise, I don't know of any other game on the market at the moment with system requirements higher than NWN2. And I don't expect any to come along anytime soon.
     
  16. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Are there any non-gaming activties that might require NWN2-like processing power?
     
  17. Taza

    Taza Weird Modmaker Veteran

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    Editing video. Building a Stage 1 Gentoo install. Physics calculation. Operating a real artificial intelligence.

    (Aka - not much yet. Generally everything goes faster, but if you care to wait a second more at every turn, you're going to not notice the difference. Of course, if you're running two heavy applications at once, dual core is easy to recognize.)

    Then again, a computer with a Core 2 Duo E6600 and 2gb of memory will likely have enough power for a long time. Personally I wouldn't go further than the 7800GT graphics card wise, though.

    (You'll do fine with 1gb of RAM for now though.)
     
  18. Taluntain

    Taluntain Resident Alpha and Omega Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) BoM XenForo Migration Contributor [2015] (for helping support the migration to new forum software!)

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    Unless you already know that you need more power somewhere (e.g. editing large video files or 3D modelling), games are the most demanding applications you'll be running on your computer.
     
  19. Harbourboy

    Harbourboy Take thy form from off my door! Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    So, based on everything that has been said so far, would this build do the trick then?

    Motherboard: Asus P5B Intel P965 ATX FSB1066
    Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 2.4GHz
    Memory: 2GB DDR667 Ram Dual Channel
    Network: 10/100/1000 LAN
    Sound: Support 7.1 Channel HD Audio
    Hard Drive: Seagate 160GB SATA2 7200.9 HDD
    Video Card: Geforce 7900GS 256MB PCI-E DVI
    Optical Drive: 16X Dual Layer DVD Writer
    CASE: 500W Tower ATX Case (Front 2xUSB2.0)
    Monitor: 19inch 8ms LCD Monitor Speaker: Logitech X230 2.1 Speaker
    Mouse: Logitech Optical Mouse
    Keyboard: Logitech Multimedia Keyboard
     
  20. khaavern Gems: 14/31
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    Looks fine to me, HB. If it's not too expensive for your budget, go for it :)
     
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