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Mad Cow's Build a Killer Gaming Rig on a Budget Thread

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:blackdot: I need a gaming/multimedia desktop and am shooting for $1000 or less. So how this works is you guys link all of the items I'd need to build and that's all I need? I used to be a desktop pc support guy in the late 20th century. So it's been a while (I turned in my man card years ago).

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:blackdot:

I've built my own PC once before, but this summer, I'm thinking I need to tackle a

.

I'm going to buy the wood parts for the widebody case & back displays. I'm going to have to find a 42" LED/LCD HDTV for the main display, and two more monitors to create the back glass. For a PC, I'm going to need some decent gaming rig parts:

Motherboard

A good quad-core CPU

Plenty of RAM

500GB+ HDD, possibly solid-state, to hold the OS and all the games

2 video cards, one really good one with HDMI (or DVI) to drive the HD display at the optimum framerate & aspect ratio, and another with 2 outputs for the 2 monitors on the back glass.

An i-PAC: the game software expects a keyboard (left shift/right shift for flippers, for example), the i-PAC functions as a keyboard driver, allowing you to hook up other kinds of buttons and it'll translate them into standard keypresses.

Cooling. Lots of cooling. I'm going to have to mount the 42" HDTV inside the case inches above the PC parts and under plexiglass. So I'm going to have to vent the PC and the TV.

Windows OS. I should be able to turn off a lot of Windows bloatware features, like anti-virus and a bunch of background processes, to speed it up. This rig is for one thing only - high-speed game & video processing - and I should be able to strip out the rest.

Parts I have:

600W power supply left over from a previous PC build

Cheap-### speakers. Sound quality, for now, is pretty irrelevant. Cheap may be better as it's more "realistic" to what you'd find in a pinball machine. Blips and bloops and some pre-recorded sound bites.

Parts I don't need:

Keyboard. The i-PAC is the keyboard. If I need to configure the PC, I can temporarily plug in a USB keyboard from my PC then take it out when I'm done.

DVD-drives. I should be able to add via USB.

Networking/WiFi. If the mobo already has it, fine, but if I don't need it I can get by without it easily.

Future expansion:

LED-WIZ, which allows for software-controlled LED light displays, and, force feedback devices to make it "seem more real"

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:blackdot: I need a gaming/multimedia desktop and am shooting for $1000 or less. So how this works is you guys link all of the items I'd need to build and that's all I need? I used to be a desktop pc support guy in the late 20th century. So it's been a while (I turned in my man card years ago).

So does the $1000 include LCD and OS?

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:blackdot: I need a gaming/multimedia desktop and am shooting for $1000 or less. So how this works is you guys link all of the items I'd need to build and that's all I need? I used to be a desktop pc support guy in the late 20th century. So it's been a while (I turned in my man card years ago).

So does the $1000 include LCD and OS?
Just the OS. I've got a 21 in monitor which should be good enough for now.

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Ok, after being poor for the last few years after buying a house, I need to update my computer/entertainment options. It looks like this thread should be helpful. I have a 7 year old desktop that I mostly build that is on its way out, and my wife has a 6 year old laptop almost dead as well. Here is what I would like to get to:

HTPC to hook up to the main TV

Basic desktop for my wife (she has a work laptop for her day to day work)- this is a lower priority for now

Middle to upper middle of the road desktop for me (would like to be able to play newer games at a decent resolution, and need good processing power for some possible simulation work)

All I really have that I can salvage is a monitor for the lower end desktop, and I have a newer 1TB 7200RPM HDD which I planned on putting in the HTPC. I also have two optical DVDRW drives. Since I still have a working computer, I can take my time on the build, it can be a hobby over the next few weeks/months. I've never put together a MB/CPU, but I'm sure I can figure it out.

I know HTPC builds can be cheap but I'm not sure where to start. I'd also like to attach the PC to my DVR so I can have pretty much unlimited DVR space

Also I haven't kept up with newer advances for PC tech. I'd like a dual monitor setup for my PC as I do a lot of multitasking. Any and all advice is welcome. As for a budget, I'd like to stay in the 1200-1500 range for the HTPC and nicer desktop. The other desktop can wait if necessary. TIA

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For the HTPC, it's pretty hard for me to post anything here that would be better than Assassin's HTPC Guide. I have built two HTPCs (one of them is a "no moving parts" build, described here).

Depending on what you want/need you can spend a lot or a little. An HTPC with an overpowered CPU, that is small, or extremely quiet will be more expensive than the reverse.

On the "wife PC" front, it is really hard to beat a prebuilt box because the Lenovos of the world get parts (and especially the OS) so cheap. This Lenovo Q190 would fit the role quite well. All you need to add is a monitor. That same PC would also be a great HTPC, provided you have external or network storage. For a discussion of building a home media server and network, this thread has a fair amount of detail.

On the gaming rig front, I haven't built one in a year or so and I'm not totally up to speed on the parts. But if you have a Microcenter nearby, they have great CPU prices and $50 off a mobo with an Intel i3/i5 Ivy Bridge purchase, which makes the combo a smokin deal (the i3 for your HTPC and the i5 for your gaming rig). I highly recommend an SSD in the gaming rig (and any PC for that matter, they make interacting with it so much more pleasant).

What resolution do you plan to game at? So much of gaming rig design is dictated by that.

ETA: With copy protection these days it is incredibly hard to attach a DVR to a PC. If your DVR is from DirecTV, Comcast, or some other well-known provider, I would give up hope of that. Cablecard-based HTPCs provide some flexibility but only work with some providers and can be tricky to get working properly.

Edited by Zasada

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For the HTPC, it's pretty hard for me to post anything here that would be better than Assassin's HTPC Guide. I have built two HTPCs (one of them is a "no moving parts" build, described here).

Depending on what you want/need you can spend a lot or a little. An HTPC with an overpowered CPU, that is small, or extremely quiet will be more expensive than the reverse.

On the "wife PC" front, it is really hard to beat a prebuilt box because the Lenovos of the world get parts (and especially the OS) so cheap. This Lenovo Q190 would fit the role quite well. All you need to add is a monitor. That same PC would also be a great HTPC, provided you have external or network storage. For a discussion of building a home media server and network, this thread has a fair amount of detail.

On the gaming rig front, I haven't built one in a year or so and I'm not totally up to speed on the parts. But if you have a Microcenter nearby, they have great CPU prices and $50 off a mobo with an Intel i3/i5 Ivy Bridge purchase, which makes the combo a smokin deal (the i3 for your HTPC and the i5 for your gaming rig). I highly recommend an SSD in the gaming rig (and any PC for that matter, they make interacting with it so much more pleasant).

What resolution do you plan to game at? So much of gaming rig design is dictated by that.

ETA: With copy protection these days it is incredibly hard to attach a DVR to a PC. If your DVR is from DirecTV, Comcast, or some other well-known provider, I would give up hope of that. Cablecard-based HTPCs provide some flexibility but only work with some providers and can be tricky to get working properly.

Thanks for the response, I will check out those links. I just wanted to comment on the DVR to PC thing. I know for FIOS there is a slot for expansion with an external HDD and Verizon gives you instructions how to do it. I assumed if that was possible, I could do it with a PC.

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Wanting to update my rig, but with another baby coming soon, I doubt it happens any time soon. Anywho, I recently came across a site that I have found to be particularly useful as a builder, and thought I would share.

CPUBoss.com

Basically, it has more sorting of CPU's than you could every possibly imagine. I went through and located a tab that sorted them by best for overclocking and water cooling. Found my next CPU with a press of a button.

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For the HTPC, it's pretty hard for me to post anything here that would be better than Assassin's HTPC Guide. I have built two HTPCs (one of them is a "no moving parts" build, described here).

Depending on what you want/need you can spend a lot or a little. An HTPC with an overpowered CPU, that is small, or extremely quiet will be more expensive than the reverse.

On the "wife PC" front, it is really hard to beat a prebuilt box because the Lenovos of the world get parts (and especially the OS) so cheap. This Lenovo Q190 would fit the role quite well. All you need to add is a monitor. That same PC would also be a great HTPC, provided you have external or network storage. For a discussion of building a home media server and network, this thread has a fair amount of detail.

On the gaming rig front, I haven't built one in a year or so and I'm not totally up to speed on the parts. But if you have a Microcenter nearby, they have great CPU prices and $50 off a mobo with an Intel i3/i5 Ivy Bridge purchase, which makes the combo a smokin deal (the i3 for your HTPC and the i5 for your gaming rig). I highly recommend an SSD in the gaming rig (and any PC for that matter, they make interacting with it so much more pleasant).

What resolution do you plan to game at? So much of gaming rig design is dictated by that.

ETA: With copy protection these days it is incredibly hard to attach a DVR to a PC. If your DVR is from DirecTV, Comcast, or some other well-known provider, I would give up hope of that. Cablecard-based HTPCs provide some flexibility but only work with some providers and can be tricky to get working properly.

Thanks for the response, I will check out those links. I just wanted to comment on the DVR to PC thing. I know for FIOS there is a slot for expansion with an external HDD and Verizon gives you instructions how to do it. I assumed if that was possible, I could do it with a PC.
External HDD is fine, but a PC isn't. Basically your DVR formats the HDD to its own specs (copy protection and all). It can't do the same with a PC.

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For the HTPC, it's pretty hard for me to post anything here that would be better than Assassin's HTPC Guide. I have built two HTPCs (one of them is a "no moving parts" build, described here).

Depending on what you want/need you can spend a lot or a little. An HTPC with an overpowered CPU, that is small, or extremely quiet will be more expensive than the reverse.

On the "wife PC" front, it is really hard to beat a prebuilt box because the Lenovos of the world get parts (and especially the OS) so cheap. This Lenovo Q190 would fit the role quite well. All you need to add is a monitor. That same PC would also be a great HTPC, provided you have external or network storage. For a discussion of building a home media server and network, this thread has a fair amount of detail.

On the gaming rig front, I haven't built one in a year or so and I'm not totally up to speed on the parts. But if you have a Microcenter nearby, they have great CPU prices and $50 off a mobo with an Intel i3/i5 Ivy Bridge purchase, which makes the combo a smokin deal (the i3 for your HTPC and the i5 for your gaming rig). I highly recommend an SSD in the gaming rig (and any PC for that matter, they make interacting with it so much more pleasant).

What resolution do you plan to game at? So much of gaming rig design is dictated by that.

ETA: With copy protection these days it is incredibly hard to attach a DVR to a PC. If your DVR is from DirecTV, Comcast, or some other well-known provider, I would give up hope of that. Cablecard-based HTPCs provide some flexibility but only work with some providers and can be tricky to get working properly.

Went and looked and there is a microcenter about 45 minutes away. This looks like a great start to a HTPC. http://www.microcenter.com/product/398006/Core_i3_3225_33GHz_LGA_1155_Boxed_Processor

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If you are looking for a great HTPC cab with lots of room to get things into and mega-storage ops, I highly recommend this one:

LINK

I've built about five HTPC's, including one for myself, and this is my goto cabinet. Inexpensive and looks great with all my other audio and video equipment.

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Went and looked and there is a microcenter about 45 minutes away. This looks like a great start to a HTPC. http://www.microcenter.com/product/398006/Core_i3_3225_33GHz_LGA_1155_Boxed_Processor

Absolutely. Add the following:

$120 CPU you linked

$ 30 B75 Mobo (After the combo discount)

$ 52 8GB Corsair DDR3 1600

$ 95 128GB Samsung 840 SSD

$ 20 Thermaltake mid-tower ATX case (after rebate)

$ 35 Corsair 430W PSU (after rebate)

$ 30 Flirc (IR Receiver, can be used with any remote)

----

$382 +tax on some parts (after rebate)

A good start. You can add the 1TB drive you have now, plus a cheap keyboard and mouse. If you catch the home media bug, you'll eventually want to get a server and make this a simple streamer.

If you're wanting to build a smaller HTPC, in a nicer case, or one that is quieter -- you'll need to spend more. Also you could probably save another $20-$30 if you were willing to wait for better deals on the RAM, PSU, and SSD.

Finally, you'll need an OS. Win8 can be had for ~$80, or you can go with an OpenELEC build for free. Both have pros/cons. If you're really looking to save $, you can run OpenELEC off a USB thumbdrive and save the SSD costs.

Edited by Zasada

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Also, you should really list your needs for the HTPC to be sure we're not missing anything. Do you need an optical drive to copy DVDs to the box? Do you want to do the same with BDs? Are you connecting this to a TV or a home-theatre receiver? Do you want DD, DTS, and/or DTS-HDMA capability? How are you connecting it (e.g. HDMI?). Do you care if it looks nice sitting in your HT rack or can it be in a vanilla case like the one I linked? Does it need to be dead-silent, or is quiet good-enough?

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IMO, no HTPC is complete without a cable card tuner, but this will only work with cable companies like Comcast, Charter, etc. Also FIOS, I believe. DTV, Dish and Uverse will not work.

Then, if you want an extender in any room, you can put in one of these at each TV.

Edited by Dragons

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IMO, no HTPC is complete without a cable card tuner, but this will only work with cable companies like Comcast, Charter, etc. Also FIOS, I believe. DTV, Dish and Uverse will not work.

Then, if you want an extender in any room, you can put in one of these at each TV.

I have a Sony SMP-200 at each of the TVs in my den and bedroom that stream all my HTPC files (via Homeshare) from my livingroom, as well as most all internet streaming services (Netflix, Amazon, etc.). They ran me $75 a piece. They will stream any DLNA device. Love them. Edited by BroncoFreak_2K3

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Also, you should really list your needs for the HTPC to be sure we're not missing anything. Do you need an optical drive to copy DVDs to the box? Do you want to do the same with BDs? Are you connecting this to a TV or a home-theatre receiver? Do you want DD, DTS, and/or DTS-HDMA capability? How are you connecting it (e.g. HDMI?). Do you care if it looks nice sitting in your HT rack or can it be in a vanilla case like the one I linked? Does it need to be dead-silent, or is quiet good-enough?

Thanks for all of your help so far. To answer some of these questions, I can pop un an old optical drive from my current desktop and that will suffice for now. The HTPC will be hooked up to a TV, I was planning on using HDMI for that. I personally don't care about the case but I am going to run that by the wife. It doesn't have to be silent, there is always noise in the room it is in. I'll take a look at the tuner cards mentioned as well.

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IMO, no HTPC is complete without a cable card tuner, but this will only work with cable companies like Comcast, Charter, etc. Also FIOS, I believe. DTV, Dish and Uverse will not work.

Then, if you want an extender in any room, you can put in one of these at each TV.

I have a Sony SMP-200 at each of the TVs in my den and bedroom that stream all my HTPC files (via Homeshare) from my livingroom, as well as most all internet streaming services (Netflix, Amazon, etc.). They ran me $75 a piece. They will stream any DLNA device. Love them.
Streaming media from network storage is one (very useful) thing. But, if you want to use the HTPC as a DVR for cable TV, then Windows Media Center and a Ceton Echo or an Xbox is a great way to extend live TV and the DVR to another room.

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Also, you should really list your needs for the HTPC to be sure we're not missing anything. Do you need an optical drive to copy DVDs to the box? Do you want to do the same with BDs? Are you connecting this to a TV or a home-theatre receiver? Do you want DD, DTS, and/or DTS-HDMA capability? How are you connecting it (e.g. HDMI?). Do you care if it looks nice sitting in your HT rack or can it be in a vanilla case like the one I linked? Does it need to be dead-silent, or is quiet good-enough?

Thanks for all of your help so far. To answer some of these questions, I can pop un an old optical drive from my current desktop and that will suffice for now. The HTPC will be hooked up to a TV, I was planning on using HDMI for that. I personally don't care about the case but I am going to run that by the wife. It doesn't have to be silent, there is always noise in the room it is in. I'll take a look at the tuner cards mentioned as well.
Sounds like you're set. There are some really nice HTPC cases out there if the wife is picky about aesthetics. It's all just a matter of $.

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For those looking for a gaming rig, this deal is pretty sweet.

•Intel Core i7 3770 3.40GHz

•16GB DDR3

•256GB SSD

•2TB SATA HDD

•AMD Radeon HD 7770

•Blu-ray ROM + DVD+/-RW

•Dell Wireless 1703 802.11b/g/n

•Bluetooth v4.0+LE

•Windows 7 Premium

$875, free shipping.

I couldn't build this rig myself cheaper than Dell has. The one item that's a little lower on the performance scale (but still good enough for 1080p gaming) is the video card, but you can always eBay it or grandfather it to another rig and get a new one. Even without the vidcard, it's still about the same price as building yourself.

Edited by Zasada

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Seagate 3TB HDD for $120.

Using promotion code EMCYTZT3084.

I have two of these in my home server and they're both great. Nice to see HDD prices getting back down to pre-flood levels (on a price/TB basis).

These are great storage drives, but not great OS drives. Get an SSD for your OS.

Edited by Zasada

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Also, you should really list your needs for the HTPC to be sure we're not missing anything. Do you need an optical drive to copy DVDs to the box? Do you want to do the same with BDs? Are you connecting this to a TV or a home-theatre receiver? Do you want DD, DTS, and/or DTS-HDMA capability? How are you connecting it (e.g. HDMI?). Do you care if it looks nice sitting in your HT rack or can it be in a vanilla case like the one I linked? Does it need to be dead-silent, or is quiet good-enough?

Thanks for all of your help so far. To answer some of these questions, I can pop un an old optical drive from my current desktop and that will suffice for now. The HTPC will be hooked up to a TV, I was planning on using HDMI for that. I personally don't care about the case but I am going to run that by the wife. It doesn't have to be silent, there is always noise in the room it is in. I'll take a look at the tuner cards mentioned as well.
Sounds like you're set. There are some really nice HTPC cases out there if the wife is picky about aesthetics. It's all just a matter of $.
:thumbup: Working on finding a case today. Also bought the Lenovo deal you posted earlier, perfect for the wife's needs and you can't beat that for $250. Checking out that Dell now also to see if that will cover my needs.

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Any thoughts on this case? http://www.amazon.com/SilverStone-Aluminum-Steel-Center-ML03B/dp/B004GGUAUE/ref=sr_1_1?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1363112355&sr=1-1&keywords=htpc

I like the look and it has good reviews. I wish it had one more 3.5" slot but it should be more than fine for the short term.

Looks good. My guess is that if this becomes something you like, you'll just build a dedicated server box and move the HDDs out of this one anyway.

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Riveting video for nerds here.

Love that case and that mother board!

The "Build 2" setup is a decent value as well. You're still paying a premium to get the smaller size, but overall the deal isn't too far-off what I would recommend.

I just built a mini-ITX HTPC and used it at a recent LAN-Party. The intergrated GPU in the A10-5700 I used was perfectly functional in the games we played (Dead Island II, SC2). Mini-ITX builds are quite fun...

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Really starting to consider the virtual pinball machine I mentioned upthread. Now I just have to figure out how to start, and how to do it without breaking the bank.

I have a 600W power supply already. I'm looking for a i5 CPU. Will need a motherboard & cooling. Decent RAM. Going to start with 1 video card that can output 1080p HD video to a 42" TV and leave open expansion with a second card later to feed other monitors. And a hard drive. Not sure if I should (or need to) go SSD.

No need for a case.

It's basically a gaming rig that only needs to play one kind of game, but the key is the high-quality video output. Any suggestions or tips appreciated.

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How big of a deal is the i5 vs. i7 distinction?

Not a ton, depending on what you want to do.

I am likely going to be starting up a new system, thinking ITX again for a smaller gaming rig, such as a SteamBox.

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How big of a deal is the i5 vs. i7 distinction?

Not a ton, depending on what you want to do.

I am likely going to be starting up a new system, thinking ITX again for a smaller gaming rig, such as a SteamBox.

I guess I'm going to play some games on this thing. Don't know if the i5 will limit me in that regard.

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How big of a deal is the i5 vs. i7 distinction?

Not a ton, depending on what you want to do.

I am likely going to be starting up a new system, thinking ITX again for a smaller gaming rig, such as a SteamBox.

I guess I'm going to play some games on this thing. Don't know if the i5 will limit me in that regard.

Very doubtful.

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How big of a deal is the i5 vs. i7 distinction?

Not a ton, depending on what you want to do.

I am likely going to be starting up a new system, thinking ITX again for a smaller gaming rig, such as a SteamBox.

I guess I'm going to play some games on this thing. Don't know if the i5 will limit me in that regard.

Very doubtful.

This article pretty much sums-up the state of CPUs in gaming:

http://www.anandtech.com/show/6985/choosing-a-gaming-cpu-at-1440p-adding-in-haswell-

No need for an i7. Even AMD makes good enough CPUs for gaming. Rather than get the upgraded CPU, instead spend the cash on a better video card.

I've been thinking about a mini-ITX rig as well, but I have zero need. My LGA2011/7970 box is still cooking along just fine.

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My desktop rig is crapping out My son told it me it got the blue screen of death today and crashed his minecraft server.

I am not looking to break the bank but I need to come up with something new.

Things I have

Monitors(2)

Powersupply 750w

1 TB HD

8Gb DDR3 ram

Things I need

Mobo+processor

OS

tower not really needed

Any good deals out there even if it includes items not needed above.

edit:spelling

Edited by Herc

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My desktop rig is crapping out My son told it me it got the blue screen of death today and crashed his minecraft server.

I am not looking to break the bank but I need to come up with something new.

Things I have

Monitors(2)

Powersupply 750w

1 TB HD

8Gb DDR3 ram

Things I need

Mobo+processor

OS

tower not really needed

Any good deals out there even if it includes items not needed above.

edit:spelling

What did you have previously?

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AMD phenom II x 4 3.2ghz I believe. I am pretty sure its an 8 core AMD phenom II

I dont play any mmo's like I used to do. The heaviest lifting my pc does now is running the minecraft server while I play on it with the family.

My current PC has been great about no lag even playing while running the server.

I built a PC back in the day but haven't really built one for about 8 years. I just put pieces in a prepackaged one.

Oh yeah no requirements for a video card I need a new one, mine is getting older but doesnt need to be done right now.

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AMD phenom II x 4 3.2ghz I believe. I am pretty sure its an 8 core AMD phenom II

I dont play any mmo's like I used to do. The heaviest lifting my pc does now is running the minecraft server while I play on it with the family.

My current PC has been great about no lag even playing while running the server.

I built a PC back in the day but haven't really built one for about 8 years. I just put pieces in a prepackaged one.

Oh yeah no requirements for a video card I need a new one, mine is getting older but doesnt need to be done right now.

Have a budget? That can determine how much heavy lifting you get done.

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hehe would like to keep it cheap, but at least comparable to my old PC. It's only like a year old. Say 5-600 bucks.

Mad Cow you think I should be looking barebones or just MB+Proc combos?

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hehe would like to keep it cheap, but at least comparable to my old PC. It's only like a year old. Say 5-600 bucks.

Mad Cow you think I should be looking barebones or just MB+Proc combos?

Newegg has a decent combo about every week if you follow their daily deals. Usually fairly cheap and you get a lot of stuff. Then you would just need a GPU.

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So I just need a MB/CPU combo.

What should I stay away from? The way processors have been renamed cause me lots of grief. Back in the old days it was easy. I guess are there any crap processors other than like a pentium or celeron?

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My desktop rig is crapping out My son told it me it got the blue screen of death today and crashed his minecraft server.

I am not looking to break the bank but I need to come up with something new.

Things I have

Monitors(2)

Powersupply 750w

1 TB HD

8Gb DDR3 ram

Things I need

Mobo+processor

OS

tower not really needed

Any good deals out there even if it includes items not needed above.

edit:spelling

I would go ahead and get a new HD. They are dirt cheap and prone to failure with age.

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AMD phenom II x 4 3.2ghz I believe. I am pretty sure its an 8 core AMD phenom II

I dont play any mmo's like I used to do. The heaviest lifting my pc does now is running the minecraft server while I play on it with the family.

My current PC has been great about no lag even playing while running the server.

I built a PC back in the day but haven't really built one for about 8 years. I just put pieces in a prepackaged one.

Oh yeah no requirements for a video card I need a new one, mine is getting older but doesnt need to be done right now.

Correction to the above

AMD phenom II X6 1045T 2.7 GHZ with an Asus Motherboard.

I got home and got 3 codes out of the blue screen I am looking up in a minute.

I cant find any of those processors is phenom II X4 965 black edition comparable?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103727

Or should I jump up to the FX series like this one?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113286

They both look like they use an AM3 socket

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AMD phenom II x 4 3.2ghz I believe. I am pretty sure its an 8 core AMD phenom II

I dont play any mmo's like I used to do. The heaviest lifting my pc does now is running the minecraft server while I play on it with the family.

My current PC has been great about no lag even playing while running the server.

I built a PC back in the day but haven't really built one for about 8 years. I just put pieces in a prepackaged one.

Oh yeah no requirements for a video card I need a new one, mine is getting older but doesnt need to be done right now.

Correction to the above

AMD phenom II X6 1045T 2.7 GHZ with an Asus Motherboard.

I got home and got 3 codes out of the blue screen I am looking up in a minute.

I cant find any of those processors is phenom II X4 965 black edition comparable?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103727

Or should I jump up to the FX series like this one?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113286

They both look like they use an AM3 socket

The FX is an AM3+ socket, the other just AM3. The FX is newer and should be faster. Probably worth the extra $20 honestly. Mobos will be comparable.

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talked with the wife last night and she would like to keep this cheap since we are due for a new desktop next year and this one will get handed down to her and hers will go to the kid.

After doing some research I fell the CPU is not the issue so I was thinking of buying a MB and ram with a new OS. Thoughts?

also I found a MB I think I can live with locally at tiger direct

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=3858653&sku=G452-7800

this line is why I am considering it.

Socket AM3+; works well with AMD Athlon II and AMD AM3 Phenom II Processors

I know my processor is a phenom II does that automatically make it an AM3?

this is the ram I was thinking about. Corsair used to be pretty good not sure about now.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=2952320&sku=C13-1020

then throwing in a small SSD with a new OS installed.

Thanks for your help Mad Cow. Sorry I need things explained to me like Shuke:)

Edited by Herc

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Chances are very slim the problem would be the CPU. For that to fail would be very very far down the list. Much higher would be mobo and RAM.

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:blackdot:

I've built my own PC once before, but this summer, I'm thinking I need to tackle a virtual pinball machine.

I'm going to buy the wood parts for the widebody case & back displays. I'm going to have to find a 42" LED/LCD HDTV for the main display, and two more monitors to create the back glass. For a PC, I'm going to need some decent gaming rig parts:

Motherboard

A good quad-core CPU

Plenty of RAM

500GB+ HDD, possibly solid-state, to hold the OS and all the games

2 video cards, one really good one with HDMI (or DVI) to drive the HD display at the optimum framerate & aspect ratio, and another with 2 outputs for the 2 monitors on the back glass.

An i-PAC: the game software expects a keyboard (left shift/right shift for flippers, for example), the i-PAC functions as a keyboard driver, allowing you to hook up other kinds of buttons and it'll translate them into standard keypresses.

Cooling. Lots of cooling. I'm going to have to mount the 42" HDTV inside the case inches above the PC parts and under plexiglass. So I'm going to have to vent the PC and the TV.

Windows OS. I should be able to turn off a lot of Windows bloatware features, like anti-virus and a bunch of background processes, to speed it up. This rig is for one thing only - high-speed game & video processing - and I should be able to strip out the rest.

Parts I have:

600W power supply left over from a previous PC build

Cheap-### speakers. Sound quality, for now, is pretty irrelevant. Cheap may be better as it's more "realistic" to what you'd find in a pinball machine. Blips and bloops and some pre-recorded sound bites.

Parts I don't need:

Keyboard. The i-PAC is the keyboard. If I need to configure the PC, I can temporarily plug in a USB keyboard from my PC then take it out when I'm done.

DVD-drives. I should be able to add via USB.

Networking/WiFi. If the mobo already has it, fine, but if I don't need it I can get by without it easily.

Future expansion:

LED-WIZ, which allows for software-controlled LED light displays, and, force feedback devices to make it "seem more real"

I just read this, did you get this knocked out?

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:blackdot:

I've built my own PC once before, but this summer, I'm thinking I need to tackle a virtual pinball machine.

I just read this, did you get this knocked out?

Yeah, works great. Got an insane deal on an old widebody pinball machine from '79 ("Paragon") that had been gutted for parts on the inside. So the guy gave me the cabinet, with the legs, lockdown bar, backbox, coin door, and the glass top for next to nothing. I cannibalized my 46" TV in the living room for the playfield (gave me an excuse to upgrade to a 50") and bought two refurb monitors off Woot & Newegg.

Inside I put an old power supply, a quad-core i5, GTX660 graphics card, MSI Z77A-G45 "Gaming" motherboard, 250GB solid-state drive, and 8GB RAM. One intake fan where the pinball speaker used to be under the machine, and 3 exhaust fans in the back.

Drilled holes for the control buttons and wired up the I-PAC keyboard encoder, which connects to the motherboard via USB. I have a 8-ft USB extension cord in there as well so I can add new tables by downloading them to my main computer, then putting them on a thumbdrive. The computer lives near the back of the cabinet so the extension cord allows me to just open the coin door at the front to get to the USB connection. I did not need a CD/DVD-ROM drive, except I did have to briefly borrow an external drive just long enough to install the OS. I had an old Wireless Keyboard USB Receiver that matches the one on my main PC, so I just walk over with the same keyboard whenever I need to.

I also put in a 75ft Ethernet cable so I can remote-access the PC if need be, but I'm trying to keep it off the internet if at all possible. Just don't want any bloatware or anything getting involved. Turned off the firewall and almost all the Windows Services I could so it stays screaming fast.

It only ever really runs two programs, Visual Pinball does all the rendering of the machines and Hyperpin is the snazzy frontend to navigate between tables.

The two refurb monitors I used standard wallmounts to get them positioned as the backbox displays. One emulates the translite, the other the dot-matrix graphics. I got away with just using one video card to drive the playfield and am running the two display monitors off the mobo's VGA & HDMI outs. The dot-matrix display is a small monitor set to just 16bit color, so it doesn't take any real power to run.

I ended up just using the TV speakers for audio. I snipped the wires and extended them so they ran back into the backbox. The TV had to be taken apart to just the display screen itself, outside of the plastic case, to fit inside the cabinet.

Took about 4 weekends. Right now it's got 70 tables. The hardest part, really, is once you get it about halfway there, and are testing things out, it's just so addictive to play that you don't want to stop to finish working on the detail parts. The thing was in pieces for over a week, just the main playfield and the flipper buttons were working, but I was just having so much fun I didn't want to stop playing.

Edited by Sarnoff

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:blackdot:

I've built my own PC once before, but this summer, I'm thinking I need to tackle a virtual pinball machine.

I just read this, did you get this knocked out?

Yeah, works great. Got an insane deal on an old widebody pinball machine from '79 ("Paragon") that had been gutted for parts on the inside. So the guy gave me the cabinet, with the legs, lockdown bar, backbox, coin door, and the glass top for next to nothing. I cannibalized my 46" TV in the living room for the playfield (gave me an excuse to upgrade to a 50") and bought two refurb monitors off Woot & Newegg.

Inside I put an old power supply, a quad-core i5, GTX660 graphics card, MSI Z77A-G45 "Gaming" motherboard, 250GB solid-state drive, and 8GB RAM. One intake fan where the pinball speaker used to be under the machine, and 3 exhaust fans in the back.

Drilled holes for the control buttons and wired up the I-PAC keyboard encoder, which connects to the motherboard via USB. I have a 8-ft USB extension cord in there as well so I can add new tables by downloading them to my main computer, then putting them on a thumbdrive. The computer lives near the back of the cabinet so the extension cord allows me to just open the coin door at the front to get to the USB connection. I did not need a CD/DVD-ROM drive, except I did have to briefly borrow an external drive just long enough to install the OS. I had an old Wireless Keyboard USB Receiver that matches the one on my main PC, so I just walk over with the same keyboard whenever I need to.

I also put in a 75ft Ethernet cable so I can remote-access the PC if need be, but I'm trying to keep it off the internet if at all possible. Just don't want any bloatware or anything getting involved. Turned off the firewall and almost all the Windows Services I could so it stays screaming fast.

It only ever really runs two programs, Visual Pinball does all the rendering of the machines and Hyperpin is the snazzy frontend to navigate between tables.

The two refurb monitors I used standard wallmounts to get them positioned as the backbox displays. One emulates the translite, the other the dot-matrix graphics. I got away with just using one video card to drive the playfield and am running the two display monitors off the mobo's VGA & HDMI outs. The dot-matrix display is a small monitor set to just 16bit color, so it doesn't take any real power to run.

I ended up just using the TV speakers for audio. I snipped the wires and extended them so they ran back into the backbox. The TV had to be taken apart to just the display screen itself, outside of the plastic case, to fit inside the cabinet.

Took about 4 weekends. Right now it's got 70 tables. The hardest part, really, is once you get it about halfway there, and are testing things out, it's just so addictive to play that you don't want to stop to finish working on the detail parts. The thing was in pieces for over a week, just the main playfield and the flipper buttons were working, but I was just having so much fun I didn't want to stop playing.

Awesome! :thumbup:

How much did it cost you (including factoring in something for the re-purposed TVs)?

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