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Old 05-29-2004, 09:17 PM   #1
Lady Blue03
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Join Date: January 18, 2002
Age: 32
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I sent an email to my dad recently telling him I was going to get a job this summer so I could save up and buy my own (possibly an Alienware or a custom equivilent). Well, he wanted me to take a class this summer so doesn't want me getting a job...so he said he would get me a computer. Nice, I know, but he said he was only planning on spending around $800-def not enough for the computer i would save up for, which is around $1600...

So I want to know what I can get for around 800-900$...I'm a heavy gamer remember, so I require stuff that can handle a game such as Warcraft 3 (and upcoming World of Warcraft). Our current comp seems to run WC3 decently- 64mb Nvidia geforce4, 308mb SD ram, 24gig hardrive (with 2gigs remaining) and a 900mhz processor. That comp was about $400, add about 250 for the extra memory (it originally came with only 64) and the Nvidia video card.

So, can i get a decent gaming comp for $800?
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Old 05-29-2004, 09:27 PM   #2
Animal
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Join Date: March 29, 2002
Location: Canada
Age: 45
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$800 for a gaming machine? Don't waste your money.

Oh, people will tell you that you can get this component and that component and that $800 will be fine for playing games.

You wanna play games, or do you wanna PLAY games?

P4 3.0GHZ, or AMD FX
1GB RAM, at the very least
200GB HD space, preferably SATA
Radeon 9800, or GF FX5900 minimum.

Anything less is a waste of time if you want to be able to play today's games as well as tomorrows, properly.
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Old 05-29-2004, 09:29 PM   #3
Harkoliar
Jack Burton
 

Join Date: March 21, 2001
Location: Philippines, but now Harbor City Sydney
Age: 34
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for a 800 dollar comp, i say save your video card.. it will last at least one more year you can upgrade then. and scrap the rest. except for the case which you can also use

i do suggest that you wait a little longer if you can. the new type of motherboard is coming out soon for a new case. i figure it would drop the current prices. just my 2c
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Old 05-29-2004, 09:38 PM   #4
Animal
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I run the latest and greatest, an Athlon FX, 1GB RAM, Radeon 9800XT, and 2 200GB HDs in RAID 0.

I can play every and I do mean EVERY game today with all settings on max, 6X AA, 16X AF at 1600 X 1200 with very playable frame rates.

With my old 2500+, GF 4 4600ti, I couldn't get anywhere close to that.
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Old 05-29-2004, 09:51 PM   #5
Vaskez
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Join Date: April 30, 2001
Location: szép Magyarország (well not right now)
Posts: 5,089
Well I was gonna say that yes you can get a gaming machine for $800 that will run all of today's games, but that won't future proof you. And it won't let you run all games on highest detail settings.

In general I wouldn't take advice like Hark's giving because computers are ALWAYS improving. The argument to wait just one more month is valid every month since prices of one component or another are continually dropping and at that rate you'll never get your comp. Find a good deal and go for it unless you really are expecting a larger-than-standard drop in prices or increase in processing power in the next month or something.
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Old 05-29-2004, 10:07 PM   #6
Harkoliar
Jack Burton
 

Join Date: March 21, 2001
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Age: 34
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umm.. i was expecting a "larger drop than standard prices" when the new mobo type comes out. they are the new type of generation that will make current atx motherboards obsolete. thats the reason why i vouch for you to wait a little longer.

animal.. you computer would definitly cost me around 5000 dollars (im exagerating of course [img]tongue.gif[/img] ). but dang.. isnt that a way bit hardcore? how much did that computer cost you? the only thing your lacking there is a lcd 19 inch screen and all surround speakers.

[ 05-29-2004, 10:08 PM: Message edited by: Harkoliar ]
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Old 05-29-2004, 10:11 PM   #7
Harkoliar
Jack Burton
 

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well she did say its for decent gaming so i suppose her current video card will have to do. get a new HD and keep the old one as well for back up (24 gigs is still handy). your memory and processor will have to go.

that way, you can use most of your money on your mobo, ram and processor.

ps: there are also some motherboards that will still let you use existing sd ram but its up to you.
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Old 05-30-2004, 03:51 AM   #8
Timber Loftis
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Join Date: July 11, 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
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If you are okay with a desktop, I think you could get a decent system for around $800. If you are willing to tolerate a Celeron processor, you could likely find a machine that just requires you add a better video card to be able to do the video thing.

But, I encourage you to think about the point you are at in life. I expect college will be coming soon. In all truth, a laptop that *won't* run all the games (mostly because of the video cards) may be a better bet for you, really. It will be much more invaluable in college. I got my first laptop in Law School, and it changed my notetaking and performance a lot. I was willing to take it to class and take notes on it. Rather than the numerous spiral-bound notebooks at the end of the semester, I just had to open my computer and -- viola -- I was able to easily summarize and synthesize the semester in preparation for finals (which are the *only* test you take in Law School courses, and which dictate 100% of your grade).

For a laptop to play games -- forget it. My Dell is marginal for graphics heavy games. With a 2.6Meg Centrino processor, a 126Mb Nvidia Card, and a 60GB HD, it ran me well over the $2K mark -- 8 mos. ago, of course.

The alienware's look like nice machines -- but I didn't go for one. It comes very "raw" and with a Dell I was able to get Word and other needed software, as well as a 3-yr. upgraded warranty with really good tech support. Another problem with the alienware's, in my mind, is that they come with a standard P4 processor, which is not really the best thing for a laptop. Yes, it runs games best, but cooling becomes a real issue.

You could always get a job to increase the money, and add to what your pop throws in.
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Old 05-30-2004, 03:54 AM   #9
Lady Blue03
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keep in mind that the other computer I use isnt mine, so I can't go yanking things out of it [img]tongue.gif[/img]

Yes, I KNOW what I need for OPTIMUM gaming, but I don't have the resources for a 3gig ram 200gig HD and a 256mb radeon card [img]tongue.gif[/img]

You all know the wc3 style graphics, and online multiplayer this runs totally smooth for me except when i'm in a game with 7 other people all with massive armies. I have DaoC (mmorpg) and that runs fine as well, except when entering big cities it lags until it loads all the hundreds of people in it...but so does my brothers totally awesome machine when hes playing WoW with cable connection *shrug*

Like I said, I just want decent gaming (and thats what i get on our current computer)-even with the best machine out there it would never be perfect seeing as my ISP is a 56k connection. I don't NEED a 200 gb hard drive because i only us about 15gigs max, so a 40 or 60gb hd would do just fune, I don't NEED 1gig of ram, maybe around 700mb, and I certainly dont need a 3ghz processor, I'd be happy with 1.5 [img]tongue.gif[/img]
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Old 05-30-2004, 10:44 AM   #10
Bozos of Bones
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Join Date: July 29, 2003
Location: The Underdark cavern of Zagreb
Age: 31
Posts: 4,679
Firstoff, you can take only 1gb or 512 mb of RAM, because the modules are 512 or 256 mb. Dualchannel is nullified with three modules, so I'd stick to 512. Secondly, 9600XT w/ 256 MB isn't really expensive anymore, and I've even heard rumors of a Fireblade XT 256MB for just a bit more money(cca 180$). Harddrive price differences are laughably small, so a difference between a 60 and a 120 GB hard of the same manufacturer and quality is about 30-40$. Barton 2500+ is the best gaming proc out there because it's supercheap(100$ max) and with a bit more money invested(50$) it turns out to be a 3200+(300$, nice save). MBO's are cheap, and it really doesn't matter what you take. I've seen 50$ ABITs that are quite excellent. 17" monitors are a must today, not because you must have them, but because you can. The price difference between that and a 15" is negligible. So if you don't invest extra money in superquality case(100$) and cooling extras, your cool machine could be up to 870(R/W, keyboard, mouse, monitor and 2.1 sound included) and have some 3500-3900 in 3D Mark 2003.
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