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  1. #81
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    Places where you lost me:

    *reaches for the whiskey+coke*
    Right... the hard drives....

    Two velociraptors in a striped array would give you the ultimate speed for small file access and should speed up windows a little. Of course if you kept them seperate and installed your games on the second drive then that would reduce the load times in games dramatically (the first part of a drive is the fastest).

    Striped arrays are nice and quick because they bifocate the information and store each half on alternate drives (based on a 2 drive array). This means basically you have two cables to use for your drive access and so theoretically twice the capacity of through put... however as you well know double the technical speed and you rarely get more than a 10 or 20 percent improvement in actual speed... except with graphics cards.

    Cooling wise you should stick to air cooling (the standard) unless you either want to overclock or you're feeling adventurous. Water cooling would require buying new cooling blocks for your CPU and graphics card (you need water blocks to allow the coolant to travel to where the heat is) plus piping, a pump, a reservoir and a radiator... along with even more fans.

    As for a fan controller... if you bought an Antec 1200 then you've got a potential 9 120mm fans and a 200mm... leave them at max and you'll be sucked into your computer and spat out.. along with everything in the room, plus it'll sound like a hovercraft. Get a fan controller and you can calm the storm without impacting on your cooling that much. It makes for much more relaxed computing and also makes you more popular with people who aren't using your computer or deaf

    Non legacy means you avoid anything which runs on analogue like old hard drives and old optical drives. The newer SATA connections are much faster (potentially) and have like 1.25cm cables as opposed to the older cables which were about 5cm wide and a swine to keep out of the way of the air flow (restrict the air flow and you can blow all you like... it won't do a thing other than sound noisey!!). Also it relates to things like USB keyboards and mice. Legacy is old tech.. not adaptable but reliable. New tech is where the speed is if a little more touchy.

    The arctic silver AS5 is a good thermal grease which is the stuff you put in between the CPU and the CPU cooler. It's much better at heat transfer than the stock bit of gunk they stick on coolers. It can reduce your CPU temperature by a few more degrees (any shift toward cold is good). As for ceramique, a little tip I picked up (this applies doubly if you are thinking of overclocking or running hot) is to unmount all the cooling from the motherboard and graphics card (if you're air cooling because other wise you're already replacing the graphics cards cooler) and then clean off all the stock cooling gunk and replace it with ceramique... then reassemble the whole thing. That will protect your motherboard and should keep the temperatures down there too.

    See I went mad on cooling after finding that many of the problems I had with my computer were cooling related. I have mine watercooled now so the temps rarely go above like 40 degrees celcius... including the graphics card which, with stock cooling, will hit 90 degrees!!!!

    But anyhow, like I said.. start with the motherboard, then the graphics card and build from there. Those two components will define how much you've got to spend and what you should get. See even between memory and motherboards there are combinations that work well and other's that don't work so well. Oh and one thing I found was that it wasn't so much the speed of my memory but more the amount of it that mattered.

    Just don't exceed like 4Gb unless you're buying 64bit Windows (XP or Vista). Anything more and it can't use it. 64bit however can use up to about 128Gb of memory though when I was running 8Gb it never went above 6Gb in use and that was on a benchmark!
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  2. #82
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    I've decided to justify a lengthier spell of procrastination by waiting to see what the Radeon HD 4870 X2 can do. I'll call it "prudence". Just a couple more weeks at most, I think.
    As an owner of a 3870X2 I shall just say


    (Oh and that if you get one, I hate you :steam: )
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  3. #83
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
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    Oh wow, check it out: System Builder Marathon: Sub-$4000 PC : Setting the High Mark? - Tom's Hardware

    How cool is that? I'm getting really excited. Looks like they agree with some of your choices too, Athenian.

    And the 4870s are out (on show).

    I attempted to solicit the advice of an IT acquaintance (who tells me he's in the WoW alpha testing team, whatever that means), and got a facefull of lecture about how stupid it is to spend thousands on a high-end gaming PC when the Xbox 360/PS3 do much the same thing and cost way way less. I've been thinking a lot about that (it shook me, I must admit) and concluded that the PC is still for me. To be honest, if the Xbox360/PS3 used mouse and keyboard then I would probably go for them. Maybe it's the fact that I'm pretty incompetent with the controllers, or maybe I just haven't played either console on a really good setup (screen- and sound-wise). But I've never found the fixed-console games to offer an immersive experience. I'm always too busy trying to remember which button does what, and trying to target quickly and accurately. By the time I've mastered those things with a game I'm already sick of the game. The mouse-and-keyboard method is so natural and easy that I can forget about interacting with them entirely and just lose myself in the game. There's such a world of difference between a merely fun gaming experience and an immersive gaming experience. One experience passes the time on a rainy Sunday afternoon. The other creates addicts. It's like the difference between getting raped in the dark by awesomeness or reading some cheap, semi-erotic literature starring Awesome Kincaid - the dangerous yet intriguing smuggler of highland rebel pirates.

    Additionally, I love RTS games, and they really only work on PCs. It'd be a nightmare trying to play them on a fixed-console.[/justification]

  4. #84
    Senior Member vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    Additionally, I love RTS games, and they really only work on PCs. It'd be a nightmare trying to play them on a fixed-console.[/justification]
    Yeah that's true. I love RTS too. Can't imagine it on a console. What games do you play ? I like LOTR BFME2 a lot.

  5. #85
    The Eighth Colour Octarine's Avatar
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    Nearing the best (of current consumer PCs):

    Intel Core 2 Extreme Quad QX9650
    Gigabyte X48-DQ6 (or similar)
    2x ATI 4870X2 (when they're availabe)
    OCZ Reaper HPC 4GB DDR3 (or similar) It is rare to need more than 4GB.
    Corsair HX1000W

    2 Velociraptors in Raid, although 15krpm SAS drives have faster access times.

    2 Samsung F1 750gb in RAID for storage (these are cheap, but you don't want too much storage, or you'll spend too much time downloading shit, rather than using your computer for its true purpose: benchmarking playing games.
    Pioneer DVR-216 (coming out shortly)
    Pioneer BDR-202

    Case and cooling - I'm not sure yet, but it definitely involves modified phase change cooling (Modified to handle the huge heat load of a heavily overclocked quad core and four gpus)

  6. #86
    Senior Member millerm277's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JivinJeffJones View Post
    Additionally, I love RTS games, and they really only work on PCs. It'd be a nightmare trying to play them on a fixed-console.[/justification]
    Red Alert 3, october 2008! I've been waiting for it for 9 years now.
    I-95%, S-84%, T-89%, P-84%

  7. #87
    filling some space UnitOfPopulation's Avatar
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    I used to think nothing of screens before the first GUIs on a computer, obsessing on processor speed, memory and such. More so than any of the other parts, a good monitor (or several) will increase human productivity, as opposed to that of the machine. Now which one of them is the bottleneck? Depends on the application.

    I've outlined different high performance setups for different uses.

    A year ago I was seeking to start programming on a particular task, solving one particular mathematical problem. My best algorithm used 8-16Gb of memory, depending on compression - so my high performance setup was going to have a server side motherboard with a lot of RAM space. I didn't have time for that hobby, so I tossed my plans aside.

    Yes, that was with efficient use of memory, to the last bit.

    I wanted to start playing Supreme commander, as I read the reviews and decided that's the game of the year for me. Sadly, I didn't have money at the time. That's a game that benefits greatly from dual monitor setup, and demands at least a dual core processor to run properly.

    At a time my greatest dissatisfaction was with the program loading times. My high performance system would have been a one with solid state boot drive, speeding up the boot-up process tremendously. Perhaps it's 'cos I installed a lot of applications requiring reboots at the time. Now that I've installed most of the applications I'll need, the effect of reboot time has diminished.

    Fast boot drive, spacious storage drive is one of the cheapest, yet effective standard tricks to improve overall system performance, good for most uses of a computer.

    Oh, we were talking about some high end in here?

    Haven't bothered to buy high-end stuff in a long time. What a money sink.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  8. #88
    filling some space UnitOfPopulation's Avatar
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    Btw, my ISP is offering 100Mbps internet connection in autumn, for a yet undisclosed price. I signed myself up for the waiting list
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  9. #89
    Senior Member JivinJeffJones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vince View Post
    Yeah that's true. I love RTS too. Can't imagine it on a console. What games do you play ? I like LOTR BFME2 a lot.
    I still play Spellforce a lot, which didn't seem to make big waves at all in the English-speaking gaming community. I have no idea why. Maybe it got some bad reviews. Maybe because the voice-talent sucked. I dunno. But it's pretty close to the upper-limit of what my current geriatric pc can handle.

    Quote Originally Posted by Santtu View Post
    I've outlined different high performance setups for different uses.
    Where?

  10. #90
    The Eighth Colour Octarine's Avatar
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