Club PA 2.0 has arrived! If you'd like to access some extra PA content and help support the forums, check it out at patreon.com/ClubPA
The image size limit has been raised to 1mb! Anything larger than that should be linked to. This is a HARD limit, please do not abuse it.
Our new Indie Games subforum is now open for business in G&T. Go and check it out, you might land a code for a free game. If you're developing an indie game and want to post about it, follow these directions. If you don't, he'll break your legs! Hahaha! Seriously though.
Our rules have been updated and given their own forum. Go and look at them! They are nice, and there may be new ones that you didn't know about! Hooray for rules! Hooray for The System! Hooray for Conforming!

Anything much happened in PCs in the past six years?

RadioElectricRadioElectric Registered User regular
I'm looking to replace quite an old PC that has finally kicked the bucket (motherboard problems). Over the past six years I have actually replaced quite a few of the parts in it (it ended up with a 6800GS, 4 gigs of RAM, etc.) but it was still a very old machine underneath. It was still able to run most new games though, most importantly New Vegas.

Anyway, I want to know whether a modern "desktop" PC would be adequate as a replacement for this ancient "gaming" PC, or whether I still need to spend £500+ to get something that can run games. I'm not averse to taking some of the parts out of its corpse to rejuvenate a new machine, but I guess I'd like to avoid that if it means I'd void the warranty on a new computer.

There was a time when I had a pretty good idea of what I was doing PC-wise, but many years of contentment have left me hopelessly out of the loop. Any advice?

RadioElectric on

Posts

  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showthread.php?t=118369

    Six years is like a hundred years in the PC world. Your case might be adequate, but you'd definitely want to replace the guts. For that amount of money you should be able to get a great computer.

    Malkor on
    14271f3c-c765-4e74-92b1-49d7612675f2.jpg
  • chrishallett83chrishallett83 Hi! Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    A 6800GS? What resolution were you running New Vegas at? I know the game's well optimized, but crivens that's an old card...

    chrishallett83 on
  • RadioElectricRadioElectric Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    A 6800GS? What resolution were you running New Vegas at? I know the game's well optimized, but crivens that's an old card...

    1024x768, and I was glad for it. /Yorkshire

    I ended up buying a new low-end "gaming PC". I still don't understand the difference between a "Desktop PC" that costs £500 and a "Gaming PC" that costs as much. It's running Windows 7. Apparently, "the future" is blurry and transparent.

    New Vegas autodetected Ultra High Quality on this new machine, and it runs very smoothly. Having said that, it doesn't look markedly different from when I had my old computer and I was running it at Dogshit Quality. I think the view distance is much higher now, that might be most of it.

    RadioElectric on
  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Well then. The terms "Gaming" and "Desktop" don't mean anything when they're selling you a PC in a store. Blurry? I'm not sure what you mean by that.

    You probably would have been better off building your own computer (Its easy I swear) but that's a solution too.

    Malkor on
    14271f3c-c765-4e74-92b1-49d7612675f2.jpg
  • RadioElectricRadioElectric Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Malkor wrote: »
    Well then.

    You probably would have been better off building your own computer (Its easy I swear) but that's a solution too.

    I used to build them myself quite often (I was the drafted "IT Guy" for my Dad's business), and I designed the last one. All of my knowledge of how is hopelessly dated though, and I wanted a fast solution. Thanks for the advice.

    RadioElectric on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited December 2010
    A 6800GS? What resolution were you running New Vegas at? I know the game's well optimized, but crivens that's an old card...

    1024x768, and I was glad for it. /Yorkshire

    I ended up buying a new low-end "gaming PC". I still don't understand the difference between a "Desktop PC" that costs £500 and a "Gaming PC" that costs as much. It's running Windows 7. Apparently, "the future" is blurry and transparent.

    New Vegas autodetected Ultra High Quality on this new machine, and it runs very smoothly. Having said that, it doesn't look markedly different from when I had my old computer and I was running it at Dogshit Quality. I think the view distance is much higher now, that might be most of it.


    lul wut?

    I remember playing Oblivion on an older single core with an AGP GPU (7800GS) and it looked awful.

    Stormwatcher on
    Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
    camo_sig2.png
  • amnesiasoftamnesiasoft Thick Creamy Furry Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Malkor wrote: »
    Blurry? I'm not sure what you mean by that.
    Presumably Vista/7's glass windows.

    amnesiasoft on
    steam_sig.png
  • SmokeStacksSmokeStacks The Myth, the Legend, the Bowman, the Shambler FuckerRegistered User regular
    edited December 2010
    The biggest changes to happen to PC architecture in the past six years have been:

    Multi-core CPUs
    PCI-Express
    Liquid cooling

    Everything else is basically the same. I mean yeah, we've got new sockets and RAM sizes, but for the most part everyone's still using the fifteen year old ATX formfactor for their mobos and cases, only now they have more fans, windows, and lighting.

    If you knew what you were doing five or six years ago than it would have been really easy to build your own modern machine today, and you would have saved money versus buying a prebuilt. £500 comes out to almost $800USD, and you could have built a pretty nice system with that budget.

    But you seem to be satisfied with your new computer, and you can play the game you wanted to play, so that's all that matters.

    SmokeStacks on
    73CQcJZ.png
  • FalkenFalken Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Malkor wrote: »
    Blurry? I'm not sure what you mean by that.
    Presumably Vista/7's glass windows.

    Finally, someone else who can tell Aero looks like shit. I thought I was taking crazy pills.

    Falken on
  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Falken wrote: »
    Malkor wrote: »
    Blurry? I'm not sure what you mean by that.
    Presumably Vista/7's glass windows.

    Finally, someone else who can tell Aero looks like shit. I thought I was taking crazy pills.

    man what

    Because its transparent?

    Malkor on
    14271f3c-c765-4e74-92b1-49d7612675f2.jpg
  • VistiVisti Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Also, you can totally turn that off.

    Visti on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • TofystedethTofystedeth veni, veneri, vamoosi Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Liquid cooling isn't exactly a new thing. People have been doing that for a while.

    Tofystedeth on
    steam_sig.png
  • amnesiasoftamnesiasoft Thick Creamy Furry Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Falken wrote: »
    Malkor wrote: »
    Blurry? I'm not sure what you mean by that.
    Presumably Vista/7's glass windows.

    Finally, someone else who can tell Aero looks like shit. I thought I was taking crazy pills.
    Where did I say that? I like Aero.

    amnesiasoft on
    steam_sig.png
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited December 2010
    yeah, that tired ugly win95 look is soooo much better than aero... (not).

    Stormwatcher on
    Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
    camo_sig2.png
  • VistiVisti Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    yeah, that tired ugly win95 look is soooo much better than aero... (not).

    It's not like it's either or, though.

    Visti on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • RadioElectricRadioElectric Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Well, I like the new style in general. Looks like Microsoft have taken some of the best features from OS X, and that can only be a good thing. The blurry/transparent effect is strange though, as no material actually behaves like that when you look through it. I think they chose to make things blurry in order to make them appear less salient, but it doesn't really work.

    RadioElectric on
  • VistiVisti Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Well, I think it's supposed to look like obscured glass.

    Visti on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited December 2010
    what looks are there beyond win9x, XP and Aero? Shit like Windowblinds? HAcked-in themes? Those never work 100%

    Stormwatcher on
    Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
    camo_sig2.png
  • FalkenFalken Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    yeah, that tired ugly win95 look is soooo much better than aero... (not).

    The OS is supposted to be bland and uninteresting, so that you focus on the actual software you're using, and do some work

    hth

    Falken on
  • GaslightGaslight Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Falken wrote: »
    yeah, that tired ugly win95 look is soooo much better than aero... (not).

    The OS is supposted to be bland and uninteresting, so that you focus on the actual software you're using, and do some work

    hth

    Yeah, attractive OS interfaces just encourage people to waste time posting on webcomic forums.

    Gaslight on
    bowen wrote: »
    The bacteria in your poop exist everywhere.
  • VistiVisti Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    what looks are there beyond win9x, XP and Aero? Shit like Windowblinds? HAcked-in themes? Those never work 100%

    I don't like the obscured glass effect, it's a powerdrain and just doesn't appeal to me, so I turn the transparency off, animations off and a bunch of other stuff off. I have a colorful palette that doesn't look a thing like XP or default Aero.

    Visti on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Visti wrote: »
    what looks are there beyond win9x, XP and Aero? Shit like Windowblinds? HAcked-in themes? Those never work 100%

    I don't like the obscured glass effect, it's a powerdrain and just doesn't appeal to me, so I turn the transparency off, animations off and a bunch of other stuff off. I have a colorful palette that doesn't look a thing like XP or default Aero.

    Well there it is. That's fine.

    Malkor on
    14271f3c-c765-4e74-92b1-49d7612675f2.jpg
  • FalkenFalken Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Gaslight wrote: »
    Falken wrote: »
    yeah, that tired ugly win95 look is soooo much better than aero... (not).

    The OS is supposted to be bland and uninteresting, so that you focus on the actual software you're using, and do some work

    hth

    Yeah, attractive OS interfaces just encourage people to waste time posting on webcomic forums.

    yeah man, you're right, distractions don't exist.

    I'm going to find where you live and put a fuck ton of disco balls and klieg lights outside your front yard. The soundtrack?

    Cats fucking. autotuned.

    Falken on
  • GaslightGaslight Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Falken wrote: »
    Gaslight wrote: »
    Falken wrote: »
    yeah, that tired ugly win95 look is soooo much better than aero... (not).

    The OS is supposted to be bland and uninteresting, so that you focus on the actual software you're using, and do some work

    hth

    Yeah, attractive OS interfaces just encourage people to waste time posting on webcomic forums.

    yeah man, you're right, distractions don't exist.

    I'm going to find where you live and put a fuck ton of disco balls and klieg lights outside your front yard. The soundtrack?

    Cats fucking. autotuned.

    Gonna go to Falken's house the next time I need to get some work done.

    bare-bones-white1.jpg

    No distractions. That's some zen shit right there. Just looking at it makes me feel more producti-...

    Crap, what were we talking about? I started staring in transfixed fascination at my taskbar.

    Gaslight on
    bowen wrote: »
    The bacteria in your poop exist everywhere.
  • falsedeffalsedef Registered User
    edited January 2011
    I'm looking to replace quite an old PC that has finally kicked the bucket (motherboard problems). Over the past six years I have actually replaced quite a few of the parts in it (it ended up with a 6800GS, 4 gigs of RAM, etc.) but it was still a very old machine underneath. It was still able to run most new games though, most importantly New Vegas.

    Anyway, I want to know whether a modern "desktop" PC would be adequate as a replacement for this ancient "gaming" PC, or whether I still need to spend £500+ to get something that can run games. I'm not averse to taking some of the parts out of its corpse to rejuvenate a new machine, but I guess I'd like to avoid that if it means I'd void the warranty on a new computer.

    There was a time when I had a pretty good idea of what I was doing PC-wise, but many years of contentment have left me hopelessly out of the loop. Any advice?

    SSD hybrid

    falsedef on
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Intel have taken the lead in CPUs once again in the mid-range. Get a Core i5, and buy a $250 graphics card and you'll be able to run most things.

    Get a motherboard which supports SLI - it's a good hedge for more performance, since you can drop in another duplicate card when they come down in price down the line.

    electricitylikesme on
  • L*2*G*XL*2*G*X Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    OP's already bought a pc, but; I've got an old q6600 + HD4850. I've spent the last two years checking if any processor would give me double the rendering power in C4D for the same money as I paid for my q6600.

    Only now with Sandy Bridge is this the case. Since I can re-use my gpu all I'd need is some extra ram. However, I'm also in the market for an SSD and holding out for the next gen Intel SSD's which has been delayed... So I'm on the fence really.

    The additional question is; what are DDR3 prices going to do between here and say march?

    L*2*G*X on
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    DDR3 will probably go up. It seems at the moment there's an oversupply.

    electricitylikesme on
  • TofystedethTofystedeth veni, veneri, vamoosi Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Yeah, apparently prices are currently at a record low. Once we work through this surplus it'll go back up.

    Tofystedeth on
    steam_sig.png
  • kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I just got 8 GB of DDR 1333 mhz for $110.

    kaliyama on
    fwKS7.png?1
  • chrishallett83chrishallett83 Hi! Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Isn't there meant to be new low voltage (like, 1.2 volt) DDR3 coming out soon? Where did I hear that? Am I imagining things?

    chrishallett83 on
  • Kobi Kobi KooKobi Kobi Koo __BANNED USERS
    edited January 2011
    Anything new happening with processors lately?

    Seemed like everyone was going all multi-core and now they stopped.

    My current CPU uses 12 virtual cores, anyone pushed higher than that? 24 cores?

    God is it a boring time in the PC realm. Fuck this decade.

    Kobi Kobi Koo on
  • GaslightGaslight Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Anything new happening with processors lately?

    Seemed like everyone was going all multi-core and now they stopped.

    Um...yes, multi-cores were just a passing fad? O_o

    Gaslight on
    bowen wrote: »
    The bacteria in your poop exist everywhere.
  • chrishallett83chrishallett83 Hi! Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Anything new happening with processors lately?

    Seemed like everyone was going all multi-core and now they stopped.

    My current CPU uses 12 virtual cores, anyone pushed higher than that? 24 cores?

    God is it a boring time in the PC realm. Fuck this decade.

    Is this an entirely ironic post? Are you the hipster-iest of computer people?

    chrishallett83 on
  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Anything new happening with processors lately?

    Seemed like everyone was going all multi-core and now they stopped.

    My current CPU uses 12 virtual cores, anyone pushed higher than that? 24 cores?

    God is it a boring time in the PC realm. Fuck this decade.

    Is this an entirely ironic post? Are you the hipster-iest of computer people?

    Pentium II was too mainstream for him, so he's probably still rockin' his K6.

    Malkor on
    14271f3c-c765-4e74-92b1-49d7612675f2.jpg
  • El GuacoEl Guaco Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I can't believe I got to the 2nd page before someone mentioned SSD's. The HDD is the slowest component on a PC by a long shot, and even if you're just playing games, it's still the most bang for you buck in terms of an upgrade or a new computer.

    You can get a very fast 64GB SDD for around $100 now. You'll go from waiting for things to load to things loading instantly or almost-instantly. I plan on building a new PC this Fall. I'm probably going to go with dual SSD's in RAID 0 as my primary drive because I don't want to wait for anything.

    USB 3 is another one that people underestimate. An external HDD will appear to be nearly as fast as an internal HDD in most cases.

    Someone mentioned liquid cooling. It's not new, but the proliferation of self-contained systems that require no maintenance is a huge deal. If you're buying Dell's it won't matter to you, but if you're building from scratch and hope to overclock it's a Godsend.

    El Guaco on



  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited January 2011
    SSDs are still to expensive, but yeah, they're the shit.

    Stormwatcher on
    Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
    camo_sig2.png
  • kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    SSDs are still to expensive, but yeah, they're the shit.

    I love my Macbook Air, which came with one. But i'm holding off on a PC one until the price point is better for the storage space i'll need for steam, etc. Even if affordable SSDs exist there will be much better deals by june, the current pricing seems to be $2.2/gb. I'd guesstimate it could be $1.5/gb by mid-2011. Meanwhile newegg today is offering a 2TB WD HDD at $100, or at $0.5/gb. More usual deals still seem to be in well under $.25/gb. We're at an affordable price point for SSDs with the space needed for a regular user's drive, but not for the sort of things we get up to.

    On that note, how have people found the user experience when the OS is loaded on the SSD but game files are installed on a second regular HDD? Obviously the load time for files on the HDD is going to be the same but does it rob the user experience of the benefits of the SSD?

    kaliyama on
    fwKS7.png?1
  • DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I run like that

    It's pretty great, though it'd be nice if Windows had some less kludgy ways to automatically set up the user folders on a separate drive from the operating system.

    Anything I really want to open fast goes on the SSD, so the OS and really common stuff like media players, web browsers, and my office suite are there. The vidya games and whatnot don't really need that sort of luxury, so they get tossed on the 1TB data drive.

    Dehumanized on
  • StormwatcherStormwatcher Blegh BlughRegistered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I have more that 1.5TB of games
    An SSD would be less than optimal for that kind of thing. And I'm too lazy to move the games back and forth.

    Stormwatcher on
    Steam: Stormwatcher | PSN: Stormwatcher33 | Switch: 5961-4777-3491
    camo_sig2.png
Sign In or Register to comment.