As was foretold, we've added advertisements to the forums! If you have questions, or if you encounter any bugs, please visit this thread: https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/240191/forum-advertisement-faq-and-reports-thread/
Options

Saving up for a new high end comp.

XyresXyres Registered User regular
edited April 2009 in Games and Technology
I have been looking for what to build, but i have no real clue who to get, so i came down to this.

1. I could just buy an alienware, but i seem to be buying a brand. Is this true?

2. Let my local computer shop do it, and just tell them what i want.

3. Buy the parts from places like newegg and just build it myself.

Also, i want liquid cooling and all that, but i have no clue what cases are the best brand, and what i should be looking for. And for this instance, lets just say my base cost (No taxes) is 8000. Basing off a top end alienware.

xyresjpgmv6.jpg
GT: Xyres
PSN: Xyres92
Xyres on

Posts

  • Options
    xzzyxzzy Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    xzzy on
  • Options
    KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    At $8000 you're running into hella diminishing returns.

    Don't buy Alienware

    Build it yourself.

    Liquid cooling is more trouble than it's worth, for the most part.


    I mean... how insane do you need this computer to be? As a reference, I'm running an 8800GT, which can still handle pretty much all modern games on High settings, a 2.66Ghz clocked to 2.8GhZ Quad-core processor, 2 monitors, 1.5 TB internal HDD space, DVD burner, Open-window case that cools nicely, aftermarket CPU cooler, Wireless card, TV in card... I think that's pretty much it, which ran me about $1,500 with everything and my replacement PSU.

    Now, if you really want to spend $8,000 on one computer, there are a lot of luxury things you can get... In the order that I'd get them if I had stupid money:

    SSD to act as a boot drive
    Lots of giant monitors
    More/Bigger Hard Drives
    Blu-ray drive
    Second GPU
    Lighting
    Liquid Cooling.

    If you don't know what you're looking for and just want all the things that Alienware brags about to jack up their prices to 4 times what they should be, then I wouldn't just toss $8,000 into a computer. The Moe's thread is probably a good place to go though.

    Khavall on
  • Options
    delphinusdelphinus Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Khavall wrote: »
    At $8000 you're running into hella diminishing returns.

    Don't buy Alienware

    Build it yourself.

    Liquid cooling is more trouble than it's worth, for the most part.


    I mean... how insane do you need this computer to be? As a reference, I'm running an 8800GT, which can still handle pretty much all modern games on High settings, a 2.66Ghz clocked to 2.8GhZ Quad-core processor, 2 monitors, 1.5 TB internal HDD space, DVD burner, Open-window case that cools nicely, aftermarket CPU cooler, Wireless card, TV in card... I think that's pretty much it, which ran me about $1,500 with everything and my replacement PSU.

    Now, if you really want to spend $8,000 on one computer, there are a lot of luxury things you can get... In the order that I'd get them if I had stupid money:

    SSD to act as a boot drive
    Lots of giant monitors
    More/Bigger Hard Drives
    Blu-ray drive
    Second GPU
    Lighting
    Liquid Cooling.

    If you don't know what you're looking for and just want all the things that Alienware brags about to jack up their prices to 4 times what they should be, then I wouldn't just toss $8,000 into a computer. The Moe's thread is probably a good place to go though.

    Don't listen to him.

    show up at your local star bucks with this.

    goldmacbookpro11.jpg

    bring a crowbar to pry the women off your junk.

    delphinus on
  • Options
    KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    That is the most horrendous thing I have ever seen in my life.

    Khavall on
  • Options
    XyresXyres Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Khavall wrote: »
    At $8000 you're running into hella diminishing returns.

    Don't buy Alienware

    Build it yourself.

    Liquid cooling is more trouble than it's worth, for the most part.


    I mean... how insane do you need this computer to be? As a reference, I'm running an 8800GT, which can still handle pretty much all modern games on High settings, a 2.66Ghz clocked to 2.8GhZ Quad-core processor, 2 monitors, 1.5 TB internal HDD space, DVD burner, Open-window case that cools nicely, aftermarket CPU cooler, Wireless card, TV in card... I think that's pretty much it, which ran me about $1,500 with everything and my replacement PSU.

    Now, if you really want to spend $8,000 on one computer, there are a lot of luxury things you can get... In the order that I'd get them if I had stupid money:

    SSD to act as a boot drive
    Lots of giant monitors
    More/Bigger Hard Drives
    Blu-ray drive
    Second GPU
    Lighting
    Liquid Cooling.

    If you don't know what you're looking for and just want all the things that Alienware brags about to jack up their prices to 4 times what they should be, then I wouldn't just toss $8,000 into a computer. The Moe's thread is probably a good place to go though.

    Well, you sound pretty computer knowledgeable. :P

    Out of all of those i only really want lighting, liquid cooling and a bigger harddrive.

    So at around what price will i be looking at to run future games like SC2 and stuff on high if i get a few luxury things like the ones i listed, and high end graphics and all that?

    Xyres on
    xyresjpgmv6.jpg
    GT: Xyres
    PSN: Xyres92
  • Options
    delphinusdelphinus Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Xyres wrote: »
    Khavall wrote: »
    8800GT, which can still handle pretty much all modern games on High settings, a 2.66Ghz clocked to 2.8GhZ Quad-core processor, 2 monitors, 1.5 TB internal HDD space, DVD burner, Open-window case that cools nicely, aftermarket CPU cooler, Wireless card, TV in card... I think that's pretty much it, which ran me about $1,500 with everything and my replacement PSU.

    Well, you sound pretty computer knowledgeable. :P

    Out of all of those i only really want lighting, liquid cooling and a bigger harddrive.

    So at around what price will i be looking at to run future games like SC2 and stuff on high if i get a few luxury things like the ones i listed, and high end graphics and all that?


    This will run starcraft 2 with minimal slowdown at high settings.

    8800GT is a year and a half old video card.
    unless you're overclocking your computer, you really dont need liquid coolant.
    i have just a teency bit better computer than the one described and all i need are 3 fans that keep everything well below 40 degrees, and thats including while im rendering video and 3d animation. Getting and making sure the cooling works is a pain in the ass, for the layman's gamer you might as well stick a fishtank in your tower.

    delphinus on
  • Options
    mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    8k is crazy high for even a bleeding edge gaming desktop. I mean a basic blade server system is 10k, and youre not exactly running a multinational :P Honestly the days when you needed to spend your mothers savings for a decent comp are way behind.

    Id really say 2k would be the absolute maximum you will need for a comp that will be futureproof for a good 3 or 4 years.

    mere_immortal on
    Steam: mere_immortal - PSN: mere_immortal - XBL: lego pencil - Wii U: mimmortal - 3DS: 1521-7234-1642 - Bordgamegeek: mere_immortal
  • Options
    XyresXyres Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Ok, i will admit im not very computer savy when it comes to what the latest graphics card is, or the nessesity of liquid cooling, so thank you. :)

    Xyres on
    xyresjpgmv6.jpg
    GT: Xyres
    PSN: Xyres92
  • Options
    XyresXyres Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Right! I almost forgot, im still looking for a good case, any recommendations on brands?

    Xyres on
    xyresjpgmv6.jpg
    GT: Xyres
    PSN: Xyres92
  • Options
    ShadowfireShadowfire Vermont, in the middle of nowhereRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    8k is crazy high for even a bleeding edge gaming desktop. I mean a basic blade server system is 10k, and youre not exactly running a multinational :P Honestly the days when you needed to spend your mothers savings for a decent comp are way behind.

    Id really say 2k would be the absolute maximum you will need for a comp that will be futureproof for a good 3 or 4 years.

    8k is enough to buy you and three friends a high end computer.

    Did I mention how much I value our friendship?


    My wife and I just built a new computer for her that is very similar to the one Khavall wrote up. I think altogether it also cost us around $1350, though with only one 22" monitor. It is running the Windows 7 64-bit beta, has not crashed, runs everything we've thrown at it extremely smoothly... it really is a pretty killer rig. At the same time though, the main game she plays is WoW. Don't get me wrong, the difference between her old system and this one is absolutely night and day (there is literally no loading time when hearthing, for instance), but she won't get the most of her system until she picks up Dragon Age later this year.

    Edit: The wife bought this one. She likes it because its blue.

    If I had my choice, this one is sexy as hell.

    The case is sort of unimportant. You don't want to buy one with shitty ventilation, but most of them do fine. I look at the reviews more for "this one cut the fuck out of my hands!" than for "this has blah blah blah special features."

    Shadowfire on
    WiiU: Windrunner ; Guild Wars 2: Shadowfire.3940 ; PSN: Bradcopter
  • Options
    FingerSlutFingerSlut __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2009
    For a few k you could get this, which is pretty cool.
    http://www.hardcorecomputer.com/ProductCategoryDetail_catDesktop_productReactor1.aspx

    However, Id take 6k and invest it right now, then use 2k and build a midrange pc that can handle everything. Then you can use the money you make off your stocks to pay for the rest of your computers.

    :winky:

    FingerSlut on
  • Options
    delphinusdelphinus Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    It's okay, everyone's gotta learn somewhere.

    if youre not very tech savvy, might i suggest an NVIDIA graphics card over Radeon.

    Theyre nearly similar in power, but NVIDIA card options are much more streamlined and organized for the simple gamer.
    Radeon cards usually have much more bloated drivers providing options to control the card in ways that you will more than likely will never use. Truly for the gamer that must control all that he surveys.

    delphinus on
  • Options
    SorensonSorenson Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Methinks he probably meant eight hundred. I don't think I've ever even seen a serious computer for sale at or near that price.

    Anyway, 800 is a little low for a serious PC, but like has been said you can get a pretty good setup for around $1500-1750, and considering your stated goal is SC2 on high you shouldn't really have to worry too much about being able to build a beast.

    On the other hand, if you're actually serious about spending eight grand on it...well, fuck, I don't know what you could get for eight grand, except a super-PC and a hard drive cage to capture an entire internet's worth of porn on.

    As for assembly, I highly reccomend that you study up and build it yourself - you'll gain a good deal of vital knowledge that'll help you out if something breaks later on, you'll be able to control exactly what's in and on your machine, and there's honestly nothing like the feeling you get when you boot up for the first time without a hitch.
    Shadowfire wrote: »
    Edit: The wife bought this one. She likes it because its blue.
    Ah, that is a fine choice - I had that case for my first real PC a few years back, and it handled quite well for its tour of duty - fan adjustment was great for doing long-term activities overnight during the winter, and the asthetics were just pleasant - the only thing is that the connections for the upper set of lights gave out after a while, but eh.

    EDIT: You're serious about eight grand? ... well, your money, I suppose.

    And since you're interested in cases, I used ]this] for my current setup, and she is sweet as can be.

    EDIT: Sorry about that, though I'm sure I'm not the only one who defaults to italics from time to time.

    Sorenson on
  • Options
    FingerSlutFingerSlut __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2009
    If the budget is $800, i'd look at slick deals for bargain oem (dell etc) computers then slap a decent video card in it.

    FingerSlut on
  • Options
    mwoodymwoody Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Ewww, Alienware? Why? It's all the cost of having a nice computer with none of the awesome.

    If you have the cash to spend, go FALCON NORTHWEST. No one else comes close. They'll help you design it if you contact them via e-mail before you buy (which I highly recommend). And no, that doesn't just mean recommending the most expensive stuff - often, they'll tell you that some things are entirely unnecessary or even worse than a cheaper alternative. At that price range, you can get a fuck-awesome custom case to go with it. One caveat: water cooling + SLI = needs a forklift to move the damn thing.

    That, btw, is if you really meant $8k and not $800. Falcon might have a low-end alternative for $800, I don't know, but if money is an issue, the peace of mind probably isn't worth the markup. Me, I've worked in IT and built countless machines myself, and the idea that if something goes wrong with this one it's somebody else's problem is worth every penny.

    mwoody on
    Steam: mwoody450
  • Options
    XyresXyres Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I told you guys, i am basing out of an 8000$ alienware computer.

    Xyres on
    xyresjpgmv6.jpg
    GT: Xyres
    PSN: Xyres92
  • Options
    mere_immortalmere_immortal So tasty!Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I honestly wouldn't go for any of the "premium" pre built brands. Theyre chanrging a ridiculous premium for the name alone.

    If you really want it prebuilt, it might help to ask around your local area for independent PC shops or people who build and service PC's for a living. They tend to give you a much better deal, and they are much easier to contact if anything happens to your computer.

    mere_immortal on
    Steam: mere_immortal - PSN: mere_immortal - XBL: lego pencil - Wii U: mimmortal - 3DS: 1521-7234-1642 - Bordgamegeek: mere_immortal
  • Options
    alivatnaalivatna Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    For $8,000 you can build a goddamn NASA space shuttle. Spend like 2 G's on a top of the line and save the rest for something else.

    alivatna on
  • Options
    FingerSlutFingerSlut __BANNED USERS regular
    edited April 2009
    I wouldnt spend much on the computer but on the screens and everything else. The computer will be obsolete before it even arrives to you...Best to make the experience it gives A+.

    FingerSlut on
  • Options
    zilozilo Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    If you spend more than two grand, you're doing it wrong.

    zilo on
  • Options
    MblackwellMblackwell Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    For 700 you could build a pretty current machine with new non-OEM parts. 800 with a case, 1100-1200 with a monitor.

    Mblackwell on
    Music: The Rejected Applications | Nintendo Network ID: Mblackwell

  • Options
    ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Mblackwell wrote: »
    For 700 you could build a pretty current machine with new non-OEM parts. 800 with a case, 1100-1200 with a monitor.

    I'm not sure how current we're talking here, but the PC I built is roughly medium-high-end and cost me a bit over $1,000 without a monitor.

    Zombiemambo on
    JKKaAGp.png
  • Options
    SpindriftSpindrift Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    http://techreport.com/articles.x/16438

    This guide is a little out of date, but it's a good starting point. Personally, I'd go with "The Utility Player".

    I believe it's best to avoid trying to "futureproof" your computer. Buy something that performs as well as you want for the games you want to play that are out right now or will be released in the immediate future. Upgrade your CPU and video card as necessary to maintain the same standard. Using this strategy, I've spent a total of about $1500 (original parts and upgrades) on my almost-three-year-old computer, and it still feels cutting edge.

    Spindrift on
  • Options
    ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    The only "futureproofing" I'd do is getting a motherboard that's compatible with PCIe 16x and the new processors. This PC right here should be okay for a few more years just replacing parts here and there.

    Zombiemambo on
    JKKaAGp.png
  • Options
    SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    The only reason to spend 8k on a computer is if you want to do Triple widescreen with 30in monitors, and even then, 75% of the money will be the monitors

    Spoit on
    steam_sig.png
  • Options
    SithDrummerSithDrummer Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    delphinus wrote: »
    Khavall wrote: »
    At $8000 you're running into hella diminishing returns.

    Don't buy Alienware

    Build it yourself.

    Liquid cooling is more trouble than it's worth, for the most part.


    I mean... how insane do you need this computer to be? As a reference, I'm running an 8800GT, which can still handle pretty much all modern games on High settings, a 2.66Ghz clocked to 2.8GhZ Quad-core processor, 2 monitors, 1.5 TB internal HDD space, DVD burner, Open-window case that cools nicely, aftermarket CPU cooler, Wireless card, TV in card... I think that's pretty much it, which ran me about $1,500 with everything and my replacement PSU.

    Now, if you really want to spend $8,000 on one computer, there are a lot of luxury things you can get... In the order that I'd get them if I had stupid money:

    SSD to act as a boot drive
    Lots of giant monitors
    More/Bigger Hard Drives
    Blu-ray drive
    Second GPU
    Lighting
    Liquid Cooling.

    If you don't know what you're looking for and just want all the things that Alienware brags about to jack up their prices to 4 times what they should be, then I wouldn't just toss $8,000 into a computer. The Moe's thread is probably a good place to go though.

    Don't listen to him.

    show up at your local star bucks with this.

    goldmacbookpro11.jpg

    bring a crowbar to pry the women off your junk.
    If I were to see someone with that, I would undoubtedly walk up and put a single huge, well-defined thumbprint somewhere on the top of it.

    SithDrummer on
  • Options
    SatsumomoSatsumomo Rated PG! Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Water cooling requires regular maintenance, and offers no advantage over air cooling if you're not into overclocking, and even then the difference is still minimal.

    Satsumomo on
  • Options
    captainkcaptaink TexasRegistered User regular
    edited April 2009
    With $8000 and a self-build, you could get some ridiculously nice stuff.

    Get a huge full-tower case with plenty of fans.
    Nice i7 quad-core processor
    2x nvidia 285s or the ATI equivalent
    6 gigs of ram
    go for a solid-state drive

    Then start accessorizing:
    A huge monitor or two
    7.1 speaker system
    One of the nice $100+ keyboard and mouse

    captaink on
  • Options
    mwoodymwoody Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Satsumomo wrote: »
    Water cooling requires regular maintenance, and offers no advantage over air cooling if you're not into overclocking, and even then the difference is still minimal.

    What regular maintenance? Never had to do anything to mine; runs like gangbusters.

    mwoody on
    Steam: mwoody450
  • Options
    SatsumomoSatsumomo Rated PG! Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    mwoody wrote: »
    Satsumomo wrote: »
    Water cooling requires regular maintenance, and offers no advantage over air cooling if you're not into overclocking, and even then the difference is still minimal.

    What regular maintenance? Never had to do anything to mine; runs like gangbusters.

    Until one day it shuts off and never comes on again, because the water bored a whole right through the CPU heatsink because you never changed the water. Electrolysis will cause rust, and this rust will bore down your heatsinks/blocks.

    Or hose wear/leaks.

    Some people find this kind of maintenance easy to keep, but someone who doesn't know much about computers and wants to spend $8,000 is probably someone who wants to buy a computer and never have to worry about it.

    Satsumomo on
  • Options
    ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    delphinus wrote: »
    Khavall wrote: »
    At $8000 you're running into hella diminishing returns.

    Don't buy Alienware

    Build it yourself.

    Liquid cooling is more trouble than it's worth, for the most part.


    I mean... how insane do you need this computer to be? As a reference, I'm running an 8800GT, which can still handle pretty much all modern games on High settings, a 2.66Ghz clocked to 2.8GhZ Quad-core processor, 2 monitors, 1.5 TB internal HDD space, DVD burner, Open-window case that cools nicely, aftermarket CPU cooler, Wireless card, TV in card... I think that's pretty much it, which ran me about $1,500 with everything and my replacement PSU.

    Now, if you really want to spend $8,000 on one computer, there are a lot of luxury things you can get... In the order that I'd get them if I had stupid money:

    SSD to act as a boot drive
    Lots of giant monitors
    More/Bigger Hard Drives
    Blu-ray drive
    Second GPU
    Lighting
    Liquid Cooling.

    If you don't know what you're looking for and just want all the things that Alienware brags about to jack up their prices to 4 times what they should be, then I wouldn't just toss $8,000 into a computer. The Moe's thread is probably a good place to go though.

    Don't listen to him.

    show up at your local star bucks with this.

    [IMG]http://blog.enveeapparel.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/gol dmacbookpro11.jpg[/IMG]

    bring a crowbar to pry the women off your junk.
    If I were to see someone with that, I would undoubtedly walk up and put a single huge, well-defined thumbprint somewhere on the top of it.

    I wasn't expecting it to be a thumbprint

    Zombiemambo on
    JKKaAGp.png
  • Options
    SonarSonar Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    Yeah Falcon Northwest. I have heard nothing but god from those guys. If you want to not build it yourself then these are the people to talk to.

    Sonar on
    I'm building a real pirate ship. Really. Wanna help? Click here!
    steam_sig.png
    caffron said: "and cat pee is not a laughing matter"
  • Options
    SatsumomoSatsumomo Rated PG! Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I 2nd Falcon Northwest.

    I'm all for building myself, but if you've got the money, hey, go ahead.

    Satsumomo on
  • Options
    AKSU 308AKSU 308 Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    What's video card would be a good balance between price and performance right now? I'm considering replacing my Leadtek 7800GTX (top of the range back in 2005). Still runs great, never skipped a beat, but I wouldn't mind trying out some of these newer games.

    What would you recommend to run Crysis & World In Conflict?

    AKSU 308 on
  • Options
    SatsumomoSatsumomo Rated PG! Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    What processor do you have? You need a fast processor to be able to keep up with your videocard. A good balance between price/performance would actually depend on your budget. I find the Radeon HD4850 for $150 great, I run everything with high settings. Even GTAIV.

    Satsumomo on
  • Options
    kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    You can't futureproof. Architectures will change in non-linear scaling ways, so, for instnace buying the most powerful graphics card now (say, with more video RAM), will not get you better performance in a year and a half from now when one comes out with a better GPU or more pipelines and is cheaper.

    Don't spend more than $1500 on hardware. Then just save the rest and buy another new computer in 2-3 years. You'll be happier.

    kaliyama on
    fwKS7.png?1
  • Options
    AKSU 308AKSU 308 Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    I've got an AMD64 6400 3.2Ghz Dual Core processor and 4Gb DDR2 RAM. I had a rebuild in June 2008 so it's fairly recent.

    I'm willing to pay around AUD$250-$400 for a decent video card, which is roughly USD$175-$280.

    AKSU 308 on
  • Options
    SatsumomoSatsumomo Rated PG! Registered User regular
    edited April 2009
    AKSU 308 wrote: »
    I've got an AMD64 6400 3.2Ghz Dual Core processor and 4Gb DDR2 RAM. I had a rebuild in June 2008 so it's fairly recent.

    I'm willing to pay around AUD$250-$400 for a decent video card, which is roughly USD$175-$280.

    Good enough, well I would recommend either an ATI HD4870 or an Nvidia GTX260 Core 216 (They retail around the $200 mark)

    Satsumomo on
Sign In or Register to comment.