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Info on Buying a PC


So I’m buying a pc, but know very little about this kind of thing (am currently a eMac user)…

What I want is a computer that is able to run Vista, DirectX 10, is optimal for gaming (esp. for when Starcraft 2 comes out), isn’t going to become obsolete any time soon (my main problem with Macs), is going to have enough room to store all the gaming software, and a reasonably large iTunes collection (30GB). I also want to be able to copy and burn DVDs efficiantly.

Is there anything in addition to this stack I will need?

Should I bother about additional virus protection?

Is this a good priced stack? (Some friends suggested having a computer built by stores that do custom building, because apparently it’s cheap and gives good results, but the prices on these items are pretty discounted)

Anything else I should know?

This is the basic stack I’m thinking about (though I would additionally need to buy Vista, a good quality gaming mouse pad, Microsoft Word, and a wireless reciver, which is to pick up from a mac Airport):

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/eragon-gaming-pc-system-core-2-duo-2gb-400gb/

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/anyview-hawkeye-10megapixel-web-cam/

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/razer-tarantula-gaming-keyboard-award-winning-design/

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/creative-inspire-t6060-5-1ch-speaker-system/

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/razer-copperhead-laser-gaming-mouse-tempest-blue/

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/hewlett-packard-22inch-lcd-monitor-widescreen-hp-w22/

http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/lexmark-x1270-all-one-printer-scanner-copier/

For a pre-built system that isn’t bad. This isn’t a top end machine, but its not low end either. Its in between medium and high. A good price for a decent system. The only thing that would hold me back is the graphics card, but it should handle most games. You can easily upgrade the graphics card at a later date.

Damn I would have thought for a gaming specific built computer it should have a good graphics card.

I might go into the custom assembly place and get them to give me a quote and a list of parts, and then see what you guys thinks of it. I’m thinking the other stuff I plan on getting is pretty impressively cheap.

Alienware

http://www.alienware.com/product_pages/desktop_all_default.aspx

[quote]rainjack wrote:
Alienware

http://www.alienware.com/product_pages/desktop_all_default.aspx[/quote]

The problem with ordering from them would be the very high costs for delivery (as I live in Australia)

Is http://12.155.170.10/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=321123
the same video card as in http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/eragon-gaming-pc-system-core-2-duo-2gb-400gb/
Because if so then it is DirectX10 compatible, which is what i was looking for

Also, http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/eragon-gaming-pc-system-core-2-duo-2gb-400gb/ doesn’t have a dvd drive with it does it? Would I need to look at any issues with compatability when buying one? It doesn’t specify things like USB/Firewire/Ethernet/etc… connections. What does this mean??

[quote]eigieinhamr wrote:
rainjack wrote:
Alienware

http://www.alienware.com/product_pages/desktop_all_default.aspx

The problem with ordering from them would be the very high costs for delivery (as I live in Australia)[/quote]

Sorry - I didn’t see that you were from Down Under.

[quote]eigieinhamr wrote:
Is http://12.155.170.10/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=321123
the same video card as in http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/eragon-gaming-pc-system-core-2-duo-2gb-400gb/
Because if so then it is DirectX10 compatible, which is what i was looking for

Also, http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/eragon-gaming-pc-system-core-2-duo-2gb-400gb/ doesn’t have a dvd drive with it does it? Would I need to look at any issues with compatability when buying one? It doesn’t specify things like USB/Firewire/Ethernet/etc… connections. What does this mean?[/quote]

There is not enough information on the listing to say if that is the same card. They have at least 3-4 models in 8600 series with 256M. However, the one you listed is the most likely candidate because it is the cheapest one available.

It does come with a DVD drive. Its named optical drive in the listing.

As a side note, I didn’t say that the graphics card was bad. I am pretty sure it will have no problem with most games. It’s just not one of the better choices for a gaming PC. You might have to detune some the graphics options in the game to get them run smoothly. Stuff like long range visibility’s or shadowing/wind effect.

Well from what I’ve been looking at, if I bought a custom made it would probably cost me about $1800, so if I need to I’ll upgrade to a 512MB video card (they are about $150 - $200 right?) and hope I can order in time to get this deal.

Just to be sure I’m going to have a look at a store to check out the custom making there, but thinking about cost effectiveness, I’m thinking the deal might be the way to go.

Thanks for help Pemdas.

The memory rating on the card i.e. 512M doesn’t tell you a whole lot about the card itself. Don’t buy a card based on that. The 8800 family or higher is what you really need to look at for long term usage. The 8600 family will be out dated much faster.

If you are not building the system yourself then it is going to cost more for a custom system. If you don’t have experence with this I can’t recommend going down that path. Buy the deal and then upgrading the card a later date is probably your best bet at this point in time.

Alienware is overpriced. no offense to the guy who posted the link.

OP, have you ever considered trying to build your own computer? It’s cheaper, and a fun learning experience. It’s not that hard actually.

The problem with most computers these days is a high end CPU, with a lacking GPU. The 8600 GT is basically a worthless piece of shit in terms of new technology. The best card you should opt for right now is an 8800 GT, they go for around $210. The 9600 GT isn’t far behind in terms of performance, coming in at about $179.

If you want to go really far with it you can probably get a 9800 GTX for about $350 if you find a decent sale. Any one of those cards coupled with a newer (yet not more expensive) Core 2 Duo E8xxx processor, 2gb of half decent ram, and you will be set. Im not sure of many Australian sites, but i think www.tigerdirect.com and www.ncix.com will ship worldwide, and they tend to have pretty good prices.

PC

[quote]AccipiterQ wrote:
Alienware is overpriced. no offense to the guy who posted the link.

OP, have you ever considered trying to build your own computer? It’s cheaper, and a fun learning experience. It’s not that hard actually. [/quote]

I do have a friend that could help with assembly, and have found a site where you choose all the parts and they can assemble them for $55, but I don’t have the expertise to chose the parts. http://www.eyo.com.au/byos.php?

I managed to kind of work out the cpu, motherboard etc… unti lI got to hard drive. I think this site just has the hard disk casing, but no actual storage space on it?

This is the idea of what I was going to make if I got it custom made by this company

Item  	Quantity  	Price

inc GST
-EYO-build
System assembled by EYO
$55
A-ADX6000CZBOX
AMD Athlon64 X2 6000+, Dual-Core 3.0Ghz 2MB Cache2 Socket AM2
$189.4
B-M2N-SLI
Asus Socket AM2, M2N SLi, nF560-SLI, ,2xPCIEx16,SLI@8x,RAID,1394a,GbLAN,ATX
$133.62
C-AP667-2G
Apacer DDR2-667 PC2-5300 2.0GB, CL5, 128x8
$54.29
E-GEAR350
Enclosure for 3.5" IDE HDD, Aston ISO Gear350, Aluminium, USB2
$38.5
D-EN8600GT-MG5
ASUS EN8600GT Magic, 512M, HDTV, DVI, HDCP Compliant, with Fan
$120.18
G-F501C
Aopen ATX case, F501C Midi tower, No PSU,
$53.52
G-EP-450P5
450 watt ATX power supply e-Power/Topower EP-450P5-L1 better than fanless
$132
F-AudigyValue
Sound card Creative, SB Audigy Value, 24Bit 7.1 Sound, OEM
$44
L-DVR-215BK
Pioneer DVD Burner, DVR-215BK, SATA Interface, Black, 10x/20x Dual/Single OEM
$49.5
O-Vista-HP
MS O/S Windows Vista Home Premium Edition, 32Bit, DVD Version, OEM
$144.28
O-OFF2007-HS
MS Office 2007 Home & Student, OEM (MLK)
$152.62
Remove all Subtotal: $1,166.91

Assuming I have to buy hard disk space (for around 400 GB that will be like $200?) is this set up better than the Eragon?

I’ll be a jerk and say NO NO NO! You listed slow obsolete parts

Everyting from newegg…

cpu: e8400 $190

mobo: GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX All Solid Capacitor Intel Motherboard - $100

Ram: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1000 (PC2 8000) - $90

PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W ATX12V v2.2 and EPS12V 2.91 Power Supply - $130

Video Card: ECS N9600GT-512MX EDM GeForce 9600GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 - $140

DVD Burner: LITE-ON 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 40X CD-ROM IDE DVD Burner included extra White bezel - Retail - $24

HDD (you didn’t list):Western Digital Raptor WD1600ADFS 160GB 10000 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - $150

Case: OOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel , SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail - $55

Wireless Card:MSI PC60G IEEE 802.11b/g 32bit PCI2.2 Turbo G Wireless Adapter Up to 54Mbps Data Rates 64/128-bit WEP, WPA, WPA2, TKIP,AES,802.1x - Retail - $20

Vista x64: Microsoft Windows Vista Business SP1 64-bit English 1pk DSP OEI DVD - OEM - 140

MS Office: Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 Licensed for 3 PCs - Retail - $120

Thats $1060 right now. The audio is built into the mobo, no need to waste money on that crappy audio card. beefed up the CPU, GPU, RAM, MOBO. The case is a preference. Choose what you like.

Everything you priced out was overpriced. Oh yeah, a better PSU. Crappy PSU’s can ruin a computer, blow out ram etc. Why skimp and one of the most important parts?

Need more storage? AMSUNG Spinpoint F1 HD753LJ 750GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - OEM - $120

Total now is 1180, and thats 900 gigs (before partitioned). A 500 gig drive runs 90. With the 500 gig, i beat your price by 10 bucks (1050).

I don’t know if you need a monitor, keybaord, etc. You didn’t list these.

Have your friend assmble it. The parts you listed are really really slow in comparison.

I know that these prices are from newegg.com and they don’t ship to Australia. See if you can find something along these lines. The prices are in USD. I don’t know the conversion rate.

Use what I gave you as a good starting point. If you can wait a few days till I finish exams, I can look up what parts you need from an aussie site for you @ the best price / performance. Its worth learning to build, you save a ton of cash.

If you need more info, go here: http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/

These guys know so much more than anyone on this site. Insane amount of info and they will help you if you post questions and are willing to learn. Great group of guys.

I your MoBo can hold duel vedio cards you can get 2 8600 fx cards and it will run faster than a singal 8800 but they have to be the same card. Am I right? Im sure you guys know more than me.

8600gt’s will NOT run faster in sli. Sli scales @ 30% max, and thats at high resolutions (1920x1200 or more is where you’ll see any added performance). One card is always a better deal, especially since a not all games support SLI.

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
…[/quote]

Thanks for the great assistance. I’ll definatly look and see if I can find an Australian website that has those specs. I’ll post what I come up with.

This is what I managed to find after searching for those specifications at a good price from an Australian supplier.

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
cpu: e8400 $190[/quote]

Core2 Duo E8400
1333FSB,3.0GHz,6MB cache
$248

http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_cat.php?cat_id=cpus

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
mobo: GIGABYTE GA-P35-DS3L LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX All Solid Capacitor Intel Motherboard - $100[/quote]

I found 2 that I can’t distunguish (though the descriptions do seem slightly different) between from http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_cat.php?cat_id=motherboards

Gigabyte P35-DS3L
intel P35 chipset,solid capacitors.
$105
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_prod.php?class_id=motherboards&prod_id=ga-p35-ds3l

and

Gigabyte EP35-DS3L
solid capacitors,for Intel CPU
$110
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_prod.php?class_id=motherboards&prod_id=GAEP35-DS3L

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
Ram: G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1000 (PC2 8000) - $90[/quote]

G.Skill 4GB DDR2 1000 PC2-8000 RAM Memory Kit PC2 8000
$189.99
http://cgi.ebay.com.au/G-Skill-4GB-DDR2-1000-PC2-8000-RAM-Memory-Kit-PC2-8000_W0QQitemZ150242318636QQihZ005QQcategoryZ154954QQrdZ1QQssPageNameZWD3VQQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1638Q2em144

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
PSU: CORSAIR CMPSU-520HX 520W ATX12V v2.2 and EPS12V 2.91 Power Supply - $130[/quote]

520W “Corsair” HX-520 ATX Modular Power
$130.33
http://www.ozdirect.com.au/product_info.php?source=shopbot&products_id=6042

I wasn’t sure about the “EPS12V 2.91 Power Supply”. Is this part of what I have above? I tried to find it and some prices, but what I found was like $400, ie http://www.shopbot.com.au/default.asp?kw=EPS12V+2.91&position=search

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
Video Card: ECS N9600GT-512MX EDM GeForce 9600GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 - $140[/quote]

GF9600GT, 512MB, DDR3, 256bit, PCIE2.0, 2xDVI, HDTV
$173.90
http://www.rpmcomputing.com.au/store.php?specs=N9600GT-512MX-P

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
DVD Burner: LITE-ON 20X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 20X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 12X DVD-RAM 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 40X CD-ROM IDE DVD Burner included extra White bezel - Retail - $24[/quote]

Lite-On Super All Write DVD Burner, 20x DVD+/-R Burn, 16x DVD+/-R Read, 8x DVD+/-R Dual Layer, Black (DH-20A4P)
$32.00
http://www.mwave.com.au/newAU/mwaveAU/productdetail.asp?SKU=17040216

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
HDD (you didn’t list):Western Digital Raptor WD1600ADFS 160GB 10000 RPM 16MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - $150[/quote]

I couldn’t find this, but what do you think of this:

Samsung 750GB SATA2
Model:HD753LJ,7200rpm,32MB buffer
$125
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_cat.php?cat_id=disk_drives

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
Case: OOLER MASTER Centurion 5 CAC-T05-UW Black Aluminum Bezel , SECC Chassis ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - Retail - $55[/quote]

Cooler Master Centurion 5, Black with Silver Trim Midi Tower, Aluminum Bezel , SECC, USB 2.0 x 2, IEEE 1394 (FireWire) x1, Mic x1, Speaker x1,ATX, Micro ATX, 5 x 5.25" Bays, 6x 3.5" Bays, Supports 1x 80mm Front & 1x 120mm Rear Fan - NO PSU (CAC-T05-UW)
$68.40
http://www.mwave.com.au/newAU/mwaveAU/productdetail.asp?SKU=16010191

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
Wireless Card:MSI PC60G IEEE 802.11b/g 32bit PCI2.2 Turbo G Wireless Adapter Up to 54Mbps Data Rates 64/128-bit WEP, WPA, WPA2, TKIP,AES,802.1x - Retail - $20[/quote]

Also had problems finding a seller for this, but found something I think is similar:

TP-LINK TL-WN651G PCI wireless network
$35
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_prod.php?class_id=network&prod_id=TL-WN651G

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
Vista x64: Microsoft Windows Vista Business SP1 64-bit English 1pk DSP OEI DVD - OEM - 140[/quote]

Why do I need buisness? The difference in cost is like $30. Also it’s a good thing I got help on this, because I didn’t realise this set up would be 64-bit.

Windows VISTA(Home Premium)64bit OEM
$125
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_cat.php?cat_id=software

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
MS Office: Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 Licensed for 3 PCs - Retail - $120[/quote]

M.S Office2007 Home and Student (without Access & Publisher)
for up to 3 PCs.
$165
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_cat.php?cat_id=software

Without postage, that equals: 248 + 110 + 189.99 + 130.33 + 173.90 + 32 + 125 + 68.40 + 35 + 125 + 165
= 1402.62 (which I can probably do)

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
I don’t know if you need a monitor, keybaord, etc. You didn’t list these.[/quote]

What do you think of these:

Monitor:
Samsung 2253BW 22" wide LCD
2ms response time,8000:1 contrast ratio
$299
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_prod.php?class_id=monitors&prod_id=2253bw

Keyboard:
Razer Tarantula Gaming Keyboard
$115
http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/razer-tarantula-gaming-keyboard-award-winning-design/

Mouse:
Razer Copperhead Laser Gaming Mouse - Tempest Blue
$69.95
http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/razer-copperhead-laser-gaming-mouse-tempest-blue/

Webcam:
AnyView Hawkeye 10megapixel Web Cam
39.95
http://www.dealsdirect.com.au/p/anyview-hawkeye-10megapixel-web-cam/

Microphone:
$8
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_cat.php?cat_id=multimedia

Surround sound:
CJC-630 2000W 5.1 wooden subwoofer with remote control
$55
http://www.ccpu.com.au/show_prod.php?class_id=mm-audio&prod_id=cjc630

These additions would bring the total to $1989.62AUS sans postage (though the CCP stuff I would pick up from the stroe, so that saves some on postage)

[quote]Synthetickiller wrote:
If you need more info, go here: http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/

These guys know so much more than anyone on this site. Insane amount of info and they will help you if you post questions and are willing to learn. Great group of guys.[/quote]

Do you think I should post up my plan before buying to see what they think?

Again thanks for the help

eigieinhamr,

Tell these guy’s that you’re a n00b and ask if any aussies can help you out. There’s a ton of them on there and should be able to help you find the best prices on things.

You really should provide a price range for the total you want to spend. I but together the computer based on ABOUT how much you were spending. Set a price point 1000 to 1250 or 1250 to 1500 OR SOMETHING. Thats the first.

Then tell them you need everything and list what you think is good. Tell them what you plan to do with the computer and see what they think.

Building a computer IS easy. Don’t let anyone intimidate you.