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Gaming PC's

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Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Sun Jul 07, 2013 9:42 pm

So, with my degree complete and my new job going well, I'd like to purchase a new desktop PC. If I do so, I want it to be gaming capable.

I know how much it costs to build these things, and I feel it is a waste (for me at this point, anyway). That being said, I feel buying one someone else has already built would work well for my needs.

There are few available here locally that I'd like to get some opinions on. I know the basics, but I don't know that much about higher-end PCs.

My main goal would that the PC be able to run a few basic games (iRacing, USAF, Trainz, etc.) and of course MS Office and music software.

I have a monitor I can use (if one is not included), a mouse and keyboard, and a decent 2.1 speaker setup. So really, all I need is a tower. (If I can find a good deal that includes a monitor, I will consider that. I may still upgrade or add multiples if I find a good enough deal.)

So, here are a few of my options (Numbered for reference, but in no particular order.):

1 - http://easttexas.craigslist.org/sys/3876174040.html

2 - http://easttexas.craigslist.org/sys/3900436187.html (SOLD)

3 - http://easttexas.craigslist.org/sys/3904804227.html

4 - http://easttexas.craigslist.org/sys/3910403409.html

5 - http://easttexas.craigslist.org/vgm/3835575383.html

6 - http://dallas.craigslist.org/sdf/ele/3920458164.html

7 - http://dallas.craigslist.org/ftw/sys/3909756798.html

8 - http://dallas.craigslist.org/dal/sys/3910657444.html


You'll notice some are cheap, some are not. If the cheaper ones are a little outdated, but still viable, I'd probably prefer them, as I could always invest a little more in more RAM, a better graphics card or something else and save some money.

Anyway, let me know if one of these stands out as a really good deal for what I'm looking for. Thanks in advance!


Last edited by Simcik on Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:27 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Shatterpoints on Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:42 am

these are the best out of the bunch. You do not want any intel that is not an icore 3,5, or 7 and you do not want any dual core cpu's those are circa 2005.



My first pick

http://easttexas.craigslist.org/sys/3876174040.html

2nd pick
http://dallas.craigslist.org/dal/sys/3910657444.html

3rd pick, this is what you are looking for if you want older used tech. It's not completely out dated but its almost there

http://easttexas.craigslist.org/vgm/3835575383.html
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:46 am

Any particular reason for not wanting a Dual Core??? Like I said, I don't need the Top of the Line or the latest and greatest.

This stuff is "outdated" every 6 months, so that doesn't bother me.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Sorta05 on Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:00 am

Tom's has a great hierarchy chart for video cards and processors that I would highly recommend referencing.  Those are probably the 2 most expensive and important parts that make up the computer.  In general I agree with shatter that you want an i series processor from intel, but amd does have some competitors and my old 775 socket Q6600 (Last gen CPU before I series) could still play BF3 and iracing with one monitor just fine on the highest settings (I had it OC'ed to 3.0GHz though).  I think I had it up for sale on here for 400 but my brother decided to buy it from me.  If your interested I might be able to talk him out of it, he already has a gaming system so he doesn't need it anyway.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:03 am

Sorta, can you post a link to that chart???
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Mon Jul 08, 2013 11:14 am

Ah ha!!!

I just found out that there is a little $20 adapter that M$ sells that will allow me to use my Xbox Wheel with any PC. (With full features.)

Awesome! One less thing to buy (wheel and pedal set) if I decide to give PC racing a try...
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  TuxTshirt on Mon Jul 08, 2013 12:21 pm

Simcik wrote:Any particular reason for not wanting a Dual Core??? Like I said, I don't need the Top of the Line or the latest and greatest.

This stuff is "outdated" every 6 months, so that doesn't bother me.

 If you run max settings on many pc video games you will see a bottleneck because of a dual core.  Consider a 3.2GHz dual vs. a 3.2GHz quad.  The dual is running two cpus at 3.2, the quad is running 4 at 3.2.  When I initially built my PC, there was an OS setting wrong and Windows was only utilizing one of my four cores.  I saw major FPS issues on a few tracks in iRacing.  After I discovered the problem, the performance difference was staggering.  We're talking from 33 FPS to over 80 FPS in the same car at that same point on the track.  Just from correcting a CPU setting.

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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Sorta05 on Mon Jul 08, 2013 4:59 pm

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-card-review,3107-7.html

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-review-overclock,3106-5.html

The Q6600 is on the 5th tier, keep in mind that's stock clocking, that CPU set the world record a few years back, I had 3.0GHz with an aftermarket heatsink/fan and I'm pretty sure that was with stock voltage.  Water cooling and more voltage might net 3.5 or better, but every CPU is different.  Your best bet though is an i series cpu from intel for longevity.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Mon Jul 08, 2013 7:53 pm

#5 comes with 3 monitors! Holy crap! I may have look at that one a little harder. What do you techy peeps think of the system?
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  TuxTshirt on Mon Jul 08, 2013 9:57 pm

Simcik wrote:#5 comes with 3 monitors! Holy crap! I may have look at that one a little harder. What do you techy peeps think of the system?

Yeah, that one looks pretty complete.  It would easily run any game that I can think of.  Shatter picked that one as his #3.  A bit dated, like my hardware, but my hardware performs very well.

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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  OLDFenderBender on Mon Jul 08, 2013 10:19 pm

In my own thinking process, it's hard for me to trust the seller if he is advertising the correct parts and such. I'd rather build my own machine and go from there.

Here are the specs of my computer (NOTE: just about everything was on sale when it was purchased):


  • Intel i7 930 @2.8GHz (boost @2.9GHz)
  • Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R Mobo
  • 12GB G.Skill DDR3 1600 RAM Tri-Channel (Gift)
  • EVGA Nvidia GTX 570 (General use and heavy gaming) & PNY Quadro 600(for the Nvidia Physics computation & 3d Modeling) (PNY was a gift)
  • OCZ PSU 1000 Watt
  • 64GB OCZ SSD (Windows boot)
  • 128GB OCZ SSD (OSX boot) (Gift)
  • 32GB OCZ SSD (Intense media & modeling programs install drive)
  • 1.5TB Seagate 5900RPM HDD (storage)
  • 1TB Seagate 7200RPM HDD (storage)
  • Windows 8 Professional x64 & Mountain Lion 1.8.4 OSX (Hackintosh)
  • ASUS VH242H 23.6" monitor (Gift)
  • Logitech MX518 mouse
  • Logitech G510 Keyboard


The CPU, Mobo, monitor, and 1.5TB HDD are the only bits that are still original to the build since the late part of spring in 2010, which cost me about $950. Factor in the upgrades and stuff tack on about $500-800 for the past 3 years. I've also gotten lucky for the fact that the Windows 7 & 8 full installs were free via MSDNAA through the MSU Engineering division. The most recent purchase was the 128GB SSD for the hackintosh install and before that was about a year ago with an upgrade from an EVGA GTS 250. As with the current setup, I'm happy as a clam with the performance in relation to the quality of the games that I play. I'm expecting this build to last me another 5 years with some parts going in and out over that period of time.

Long story short, gotta do the research for the majority of the parts to make sure that people haven't had issues with. The market as it is now, you could probably get something just as powerful if not more by building your own rig then buying it off of someone else.

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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Shatterpoints on Tue Jul 09, 2013 3:12 am

TuxTshirt wrote:
Simcik wrote:#5 comes with 3 monitors! Holy crap! I may have look at that one a little harder. What do you techy peeps think of the system?

Yeah, that one looks pretty complete.  It would easily run any game that I can think of.  Shatter picked that one as his #3.  A bit dated, like my hardware, but my hardware performs very well.

LOL I like what we have going here. I recommend something to Sim and he laughs at me. You drop in and echo my points, and he takes it seriously.


** edit**

I was going to make the point that fender did. I wouldn't buy a used gaming rig because you don't know how often they reseated the CPU cooler with new thermal paste, you don't know if the CPU, RAM, or GFX card have been overclocked and thusly abused and as a result have a shorter life span. It's akin to getting say a viper but never changing the oil for the time you have it and you drive it hard for 5k+ miles, then sell it like its ok.


BUT I understand you feel the need to try to save money, so instead of talking you out of it I picked from what you seemed to have found/liked anyway. The setups I picked for you from your group are the best of the bunch and are far more worth your time and money should you get one.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  OLDFenderBender on Tue Jul 09, 2013 8:34 am

I did take a look at the rig listing that Sim put up. My list is the same as Shatter's, but for the upgradeability for the future would be the second pick. Though my roommate has the X58 chipset for the sabertooth mobo, he had some issues with some of the capacitors burning out (was going on 5 years). Since it's a LGA 1155 socket, you can upgrade the CPU to one of the lower grade 2nd or 3rd Gen i5 or i7 when the time comes.

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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Tue Jul 09, 2013 9:30 am

Shatterpoints wrote:
TuxTshirt wrote:
Simcik wrote:#5 comes with 3 monitors! Holy crap! I may have look at that one a little harder. What do you techy peeps think of the system?

Yeah, that one looks pretty complete.  It would easily run any game that I can think of.  Shatter picked that one as his #3.  A bit dated, like my hardware, but my hardware performs very well.

LOL I like what we have going here. I recommend something to Sim and he laughs at me. You drop in and echo my points, and he takes it seriously.


** edit**

I was going to make the point that fender did. I wouldn't buy a used gaming rig because you don't know how often they reseated the CPU cooler with new thermal paste, you don't know if the CPU, RAM, or GFX card have been overclocked and thusly abused and as a result have a shorter life span. It's akin to getting say a viper but never changing the oil for the time you have it and you drive it hard for 5k+ miles, then sell it like its ok.


BUT I understand you feel the need to try to save money, so instead of talking you out of it I picked from what you seemed to have found/liked anyway. The setups I picked for you from your group are the best of the bunch and are far more worth your time and money should you get one.


Shatter, that's not the case. I was leaning more toward #2, but it's sold. I re-checked your suggestions and found that option to be a good deal.

However, you're negative about everything that isn't in its package still and isn't the latest model. I don't need the best of everything to run the programs I want, and I don't want to break my bank. Especially if I don't want to have to give up Forza and racing with you guys.

Anyway. I'm looking for more factual analysis, not anecdotal stuff. Tux EXPLAINED why I don't want a dual core processor - you just said I don't want one. You didn't justify why a $1500 system is worth 5x the amount of several of the other older systems. Is it because of $300 worth of parts? Is it something that would work for now that I could upgrade later.

It's hard to take what you say more seriously when you don't justify your choices (Until your post just now, that is.).

Tux, Smus, and Fender have all given explanations and references - you've just given opinions. That doesn't mean they're not correct, but I don't know enough to know if your opinion is correct/valuable without some more information.

Now that you have explained your position, I can understand more about the decisions you've made. I agree with you about building your own - that will always be better (Like buying new vs. used, to stick with the automotive analogies.) from an options and performance standpoint. That being said, I am on a budget, and I am not a hardcore gamer. I would like to be able to play some old games I haven't gotten to in a while and I'd like to be able to try out games like iRacing. There are a few old $300 PCs on that list - I know they're not the best or the fastest, but they have the numbers to run what I need them to, and if they last me a year and allow me to get some exposure to the games I want without spending a whole lot, then that's fine with me. I would hate to spend $1500 building an amazing system only to find out I don't like PC racing or something like that. Furthermore, I don't feel like paying more and not getting more value. If there is a $500 system that is equal to a $700 system, I'd go with the $500 system, if that makes sense. Or if a $300 system is 75% as capable as a $700 system, then it's still a better system in terms of cost/benefit.

That is part of why your third option is, at the moment, my forerunner. It comes with the most extras. So, for $720, I'm racing, with triple monitors and a wheel. That's pretty hard to beat. Are the other PC's better? Sure. But are they worth it???

Thanks for all the help. I do appreciate it - especially when you all take the time to explain why you feel the way you do. That helps me out a lot.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Sorta05 on Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:08 am

Sim,

Just do some reading on Tom's hardware.  They have some great budget build articles.  I've followed there guidelines on my last couple of builds and came out with a great system that has lasted for years.  You should be able to put together a full system for well under 500 with all new parts if you already have a monitor.  Or if you really want to do it on the cheap people practically give away CRT's and they have great picture quality.  Slickdeals has great deals on barebone systems from time to time.  I wouldn't' be surprised that if you played it right you could make a brand new system for $300.  Good luck.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:22 am

Oh, and FYI (especially Tux, since he pointed it out), the guy who had #2 used this device to run trips on his single output video card and swore by it. He said he recommends it to everyone.

http://www.matrox.com/graphics/en/products/gxm/th2go/displayport/
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  TuxTshirt on Tue Jul 09, 2013 12:07 pm

Simcik wrote:Oh, and FYI (especially Tux, since he pointed it out), the guy who had #2 used this device to run trips on his single output video card and swore by it. He said he recommends it to everyone.

http://www.matrox.com/graphics/en/products/gxm/th2go/displayport/

 2 questions: Is he selling his with that device?  How much does it cost?  I mentioned to you about the NVIDIA GPUs.  It sounds like that would work with it.  My AMD GPU only required a $16 cable to work.  If that device is cheap, then it certainly would be worth it.

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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Shatterpoints on Tue Jul 09, 2013 12:44 pm

Sim-


To follow up wit you. The reason I am being short and sweet, not negative towards used stuff necessary. Is that on your budget there is not much merit going in depth with you because you are looking for a used setup that you don't care if it lasts a year or not. It sounds like to me now that you are testing the waters. If you don't want to commit financially to pc gaming yet, which again is understandable then learning for example the difference between a gtx 660 and gtx 660ti wont help you.

In fact I thought you would appriciate short, sweet, and to the point (yes/no) type feed back simply because what you choose will not be your battlestation for years to come. If you were to make a signifigant financial investment into a gaming PC then I would absolutely get granular with you because imo thats when it would make sense to do so.


That being said I will give you some base line info to better cull the pickings.


CPU-

As tux mentioned and I mentioned you want at least a quad core cpu so that you do not create a harware bottle neck. ( ie skinny tires on a 900hp beast) Fact* most games are barely designed for more than dual core threaded operation. However that doesn't mean you don't want a quad core. The reason being is while your game is running, so is your OS and all the other periphrials and they require cpu resources too. So your game can run on 2 cores and the rest of your pc on the other 2 and you will not suffer a performance loss. Tux was referring to precessor affinity for his issue, which meant the OS utilized only a single core for its operations and as a result a decrease in performance was observed in iRacing.

RAM-

a 32bit, or x86 OS (xp,vista,win7,win8) can only utilize 3.75GB ram. This is just a limitation of 32bit processing. So if you are going to run a 32bit OS do not waste your money on more than 4GB ram. 64bit or x64 OS (xp,vista,win7,win8) can use more than you will ever need for a long time to come. So if you do run a x64 OS you can expand the RAM past 4GB. You may see people talk about RAM timings, which used to be an issue but now with faster DDR3 and DDR5 ram its not so much a thing to worry about. (RAM timings are akin to fine tuning the FD ratio on a gearbox) sure it works great but for certain applications you can get a better result if you tweak them.


GFX-

Just as important as a CPU in the case of gaming. Do not get anything that is older than a GT7800/GT7900 (which is the gfx in the xbox360) You would want the gfx card to have atleast 1GB dedicated memory so that you do not hog system resources from the PC (especially if you have a 32bit OS) Just about all GFX cards require an aftermarket power supply, make sure you find out how much power the one you pick needs and adjust your PSU accordingly


PSU-

As I said before get the single 12V rail PSU not the dual rail ( google or youtube this for a complete explanation) Make sure the one you get is 80 Plus (very power efficient) and make sure its big enough, mine for example is 750watts and I'm basically maxing it out between mobo/cpu/gfx. These are vitally important because if you cut corners here you risk ruining ALL of your hardware that is sensetive to electricity (mobo,cpu,ram, gfx, capacitors, fans). If you want to spend the money you can get a modular PSU which you plug into it only the cables you use. As apposed to a traditional PSU that comes with a larged fixed wireing harness.

Case-

I would spend the extra money here because whatever one you buy, you will keep for a long, long time making your ROI highest with the case. Look for the features it has and see if they sound like things you want or will want.
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Simcik on Tue Jul 09, 2013 2:20 pm

Tux-

Well, that one was sold already, so it's a moot point. (but no, it wasn't included) I just thought it might help someone else if they ever read this.

And no, it's not cheap. It's about $300. (Though I'm not sure how much a more capable graphics card would cost?)


Shatter-

Thanks!
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Re: Gaming PC's

Post  Shatterpoints on Tue Jul 09, 2013 2:58 pm

Simcik wrote:Tux-

Well, that one was sold already, so it's a moot point. (but no, it wasn't included) I just thought it might help someone else if they ever read this.

And no, it's not cheap. It's about $300. (Though I'm not sure how much a more capable graphics card would cost?)


Shatter-
Thanks!

This is the ballpark you want to be in for a gfx card. I would strongly recommend shopping by these specs and to not get anything lower spec'd


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=14-130-827&SortField=0&SummaryType=0&Pagesize=10&PurchaseMark=&SelectedRating=1&VideoOnlyMark=False&VendorMark=&IsFeedbackTab=true&Keywords=%28keywords%29&Page=1
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