Friday, June 23, 2006

Cheap Gaming PC?

Brian Crecente at Kotaku just had his PC die and was asking for suggestions. He was thinking about this rig which rings up under $720.

I've actually been considering upgrading my PC, but not necessarily for gaming. For a Computer Science Major and computer enthusiast for over 2 decades, you'd think I'd have a decent computer. It's decent, but it sure as hell is not current. My monsterous Athlon 2000+, 768MB RAM, and NVidia Dualhead card are every bit short of impressive. As I've said before though, I don't like to use the PC any more than I have to. But multitasking power is important.

With this component list, I'd definitely have to make some modifications. Out with the water cooling, video card, and case...I don't need those. That puts me under $500.

Tempting, indeed.

It's important to note that their 4Ghz is achieved by over-clocking. That's just something I wont do. If a processor is spec'ed at a certain level, then that's what it was meant for (which is why the water-cooling was necessary). Still, a dual core running at 2.66Ghz each should do great.

There is a great introduction that talks about how your typical PC vendors use cheap parts to stay ahead. I never thought of it that way, but the point is valid. For me, if it has a name brand on it, then it is likely to be bloated with useless software and have proprietary hardware. Custom built machines can be maintained by the owner, which is a plus. Even though companies such as IBM, Gateway, or Dell will mail you replacement parts, you do end up over-paying for the intial investment, and sometimes upgrades must be purchased from the respective vendor.

If you need a new computer, this DIY setup is worth looking into.


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