Random Thoughts on Budget Rigs and Other Things
by, 03-11-2010 at 03:49 PM (849 Views)
My first blog post. For those who don't know me, I ended up at TG through that wonderfully but frustrating game known as Battlefield 2142. Frustrating as in crashes were common at the darnest times like when I'm just racking up a 10-in-a-row killstreak.
Anyways, got involved with a IHS outfit, known as the 9th MID, and was the first member they had (back when it was Pfeil and ...oh gosh, I can't recall the other guy's name. Anyways was active for the better part of 2 years and then I basically dropped out since I couldn't afford the SM fee anymore and RL was sucking more time away.
Since then I've been mainly a lurker/poster/helper in the Hardware and Software section on the forums. Occasionally I'll host or join in a game with the boys of the TG:SGG (TG: Strategy Games Group), led by Amu.
Recently, haven't been too active since we've got a whole slew of new gurus now in the Hardware/Software section including FBMantis, Bamboo, Reaperassault, Vulcan, Venman (old 9th), and many others. Sorry can only remember a few of you off the top of my head.
Anyways, onto a different rambling...
Well, with my own upgrade parts already on their way and two used rigs coming Friday (rather I need to pick them up from a friend), I decided to say what it would take to satisfy my brother's high-ended desires for a gaming rig.
So a few months back, he wanted practically a dream for me:
4 GB of RAM
1 GB 5890
500 GB HDD
Seeing how neither of us has the money now for such a rig, I figured he wants quad-core and I'd have some leftover parts soon, might as well see what's possible.
So I came up with this initially:
Case, Mobo (both new)
Athlon II X4 930 (2.8 GHz)
4 GB of RAM
1 GB 5770 (he already has it)
HDD (reuse the 120 GB from my last rig)
LG DVD Burner (again a reuse from a failed Linux rig upstairs - unfortunately IDE cable)
Rosewill RG-430 (430W) PSU (good quality, just a rebrand of a midrange ATNG, probably a Nexus Value 430 in disguise)
OS (I already have a 64-bit copy of Vista Business)
So that comes out to roughly $325 shipped. So figuring $400 wouldn't be bad, I ended swapping out the AII X4 for a Phenom II X4 945 (95W) for just $51 more. The new total now is $375 shipped. Maybe I'll swap the IDE burner with a SATA burner in another rig, so his new rig won't have airflow issues.
Performance wise, it'll be fairly close to my upgraded rig, minus a few extras like half the RAM, smaller HDD, 1 less optical drive, no fan controller, and probably a bit noisier seeing how the case comes with 2 x 120mm sleeve bearing fans.
I think with time the Phenom's L3 cache will see better use and his rig would have some advantage over my Q9550 (no L3 cache).
And now back to my previous rambling...
I'm pretty behind on the times, I'll admit. Stuff changes so rapidly and given the number of people helping out and post now, it moves along at a lightning pace. Gone are the days when only a few crucial big parts came out in a year. Now we as enthusiasts, DIYers, and consumers are inundated with a plethora of parts in every major component. See I was stuck trying to spell "inundated" and "plethora" just there. First time I finally managed to either right in the last 3 months. Used to be great with spelling out rarely seen words off the top of my head.
Of course, with the abundance of chips out there, the gaps between performance tiers are much smaller now. To the point where jumping from one vid card or CPU to the next isn't a major performance jump (at least not usually). I miss the day the 8800 was announced and we saw this HUGE performance gap between it and the old 7800. Same for the Core 2 Duos vs. the old Pentium 4s and Pentium Ds (you could cook on either of these old chips). Still waiting for one of new big cards or CPUs to come out and blow my mind again at the possibilities
Something been nagging at me. I was too abrupt and harsh with FBMantis a few days ago posting about the Athlon II X4 chip in Skud's thread. Apologies if you ever read this. Err, if you can stand reading this post which could easily turn into a biography at any point. Muwahahaha!
Until next week (when I'll finally be done with finals), I bid you a fair week, great gaming sessions, and better weather than what I'll get here in Chicago (rain rain rain).