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View Full Version : My turn for a new PC


Immortal Wombat
25-08-2004, 06:45:21
Or rather I'm relinquishing control of the family PC after 5 years of parental moaning. Is it still cheaper to build one rather than go for the off-the-shelf package, or is that only true for exotic custom specs? I don't think I need anything ridiculously good (which is good, because I couldn't afford it anyway) but otherwise I'll want a fairly new computer.
Pentium IV, 512mb RAM, 80gig HD or something
DVD player, CD writer should be ok.
17"/19" flatscreen probably
Whatever modem, since I'll be using Uni broadband.

I'm not really bothered about that, unless there's a particularly good deal to catch, hardware that I must have or must avoid.

Then I need a deck of cards: Sound, Graphics, TV, Network; oh, and a printer. And some speakers. But I have no idea what's going on in the world of hardware. I want it to play music well, but I don't play any graphics-heavy games, so I can probably let the graphics card slide a bit, as long as it'll play DVDs.

Um.

Sir Penguin
25-08-2004, 07:24:38
It's still cheaper to build your own, if you're planning on spending more than around C$600.

Sound will come on-board your motherboard. On-board audio chipsets aren't bad these days, and if you get a good motherboard then you'll get a quality audio chipset. Of course, if you want to use 5.1 speakers, check that the sound card does 5.1 output. For speakers, 5.1 will cost at least C$70, ranging up to C$650. I bought a C$80 (71 watt) set on sale a few months ago, and they're incredible (at least, compared to the trashy ones that came free with my K6-2 450, and that I'd been using for 5 years). I don't see any reason to have more than that, unless you're furnishing a living room or something. A 2.1 speaker system goes at around C$30.

For graphics, the Radeon 9600 will set you back around C$150, and will handle anything less than Doom3/Far Cry/Half Life 2 just fine. The Radeon 9200 is an acceptable choice if you seriously never play anything other than Solitaire. Never get an SE card, they're crippled; never get an XT card, they're overpriced. I have no idea where nVidia's sitting. I'm using a GeForce4 Ti4200, and it displays old RPGs fine.

Get your network card from the dump. As long as it has an RJ-45 connection and works, it will connect you to the Internet.

SP

Nav@work
25-08-2004, 09:10:51
buy it as a pre-built pc. You may pay a bit extra, but the warranties etc are useful if things go wrong.

The Mad Monk
25-08-2004, 09:52:45
Nav just dosen't want another PC building thread. :p

Funkodrom
25-08-2004, 10:00:22
Get an Evesham.

Beta1
25-08-2004, 10:05:38
yeah i like evesham, i got one of their laptops 2 years back and its never given me any trouble.

Funkodrom
25-08-2004, 10:09:58
Yeah, my last two have been Eveshams, I think Nav bought one too?

Their 3 year (2 on-site) warranty (standard, no extra cost) is excellent. The components are excellent, build quality is excellent and best of all they actually build, run, and test a whole checklist of standard functions on every machine before shipping! Unheard of by some manufacturers.

Not cheap but good value (I think anyway).

Nav@work
25-08-2004, 10:30:32
my Dad has bought loads. :)

Sir Penguin
25-08-2004, 18:31:53
If you know your problem diagnosis, it's easier and cheaper to send in your components under their own warranties than it is to send in the whole computer.

SP

MDA
25-08-2004, 19:55:49
That's a big IF, but that's what I plan on using you people for.

If I ever get around to ordering bits. Who told me to wait for PCI Express? :bash:

Sir Penguin
25-08-2004, 22:46:04
Seriously, it will be great. :)

SP

Jeratain
26-08-2004, 01:22:37
You could wait until the nForce 4 is released. Sadly, Soundstorm 2 will not be included with it :( (At least, not the Dolby Digital decoding that was included with the original Soundstorm). Damn... nothing beats that onboard sound either. The Audigy 2 ZS doesn't even have anything on it.

Anyways, build your own system unless software is going to be a $$$ problem for you.

Deacon
26-08-2004, 03:48:16
I'd only get PCI Express if I were also going to buy a killer graphics card. It doesn't make much sense to install a wimpy graphics adapter after shelling out for PCI Express.

MDA
26-08-2004, 11:44:19
Athlon needs to get their thumbs out of their collective ass and get moving. I'm not shelling out for a Pentium.

The current PCI Express "killer graphics cards" don't seem to run much faster than a vanilla/AGP system. nVidia 6800 GT and ATi Radeon X800XT were the ones I saw tested...

http://www.spodesabode.com/content/article/pciexpress/1

The Mad Monk
28-08-2004, 08:51:01
Originally posted by MDA
That's a big IF, but that's what I plan on using you people for.

If I ever get around to ordering bits. Who told me to wait for PCI Express? :bash:

Well...

Originally posted by MDA
I'm going to wait a few months (hopefully) for an Athlon/PCI express board to become available. Of course, now Trip has been by to say its all hype (true, at present) and will be bugged, but I wanted maximum upgradeability. Its been tough to decide.

I did get a 21 inch Samsung LCD with my first paycheck (self-awarded graduation gift). :) Haven't noticed any ghosting in Mechwarrior mercenaries, X2, or Jedi Academy yet, so I guess its OK. Maybe my eyes are the limiting factor.

I dunno, but you were certainly warned...:p

Immortal Wombat
01-09-2004, 05:17:32
Yay. I can afford a flatscreen, but only if I don't get MS Office with it. Is that likely to be a problem I wonder.

Sir Penguin
02-09-2004, 05:02:29
That depends on if you need the Office features that are absent in OpenOffice.

SP

Immortal Wombat
02-09-2004, 08:20:11
No, probably not.

Sir Penguin
02-09-2004, 16:40:49
Features like speed, and compatability with complex Office document formatting.

SP