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Need Help Buying a new computer

by classics64 / May 7, 2007 1:50 PM PDT

Hello, I am currently looking for a new computer that I can use for high-performance gaming as well all purpose tasks. I have about $3500 to spend, and preferrably would like to have room to upgrade. I'm just having trouble narrowing my search down to a computer that would work best for me.

So far, I've been looking closely at Falcon Northwest's Mach V, and the Alienware Area 51-7500. Any help is appreciated. Thanks.

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Some insight...
by Willy / May 7, 2007 10:31 PM PDT

Alienware is now owned by Dell. Supposedly, Alienware is still a dept. of its own, but some buyers still wait a longtime before delivery and then aren't happy with what they got(some users). So take that into account. finis -----Willy Happy

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Why not build it?
by VetterZor / May 8, 2007 1:56 AM PDT

You can build an awesome pc for a fraction of your budget. Heck Ill even help you pic out your gear. Just tell me your level of computer knowledge and we can get started.

I just built a pc for my buddy with a core 2 duo for under $1000.00 and it pwns.

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Computer for my Son
by moonchild1969 / May 8, 2007 10:24 PM PDT
In reply to: Why not build it?

I can build it if I an told the proper instructions. I was reading the forum and I would like to get a new computer for my son. He is just in Jr. High School, but like to play Guild Wars and other games. We have a Draft-N wireless system in the house, and I would like to updgrade himt to something nice that will last a while or at least be able to be ungraded. I would like to keep below $1000, but not sure if that is possible.

Thanks in advance for the help

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You can do it yes you can!
by VetterZor / May 9, 2007 1:35 AM PDT
In reply to: Computer for my Son

Building a PC is a very fun thing to do.
I build them and Ive bought complete systems from Dell.
It all depends on the amount of time I have. If I need a PC quick and dont want to wait for parts, Ill settle for a prebuilt unit.

If I want to get the best bang for the buck Ill build it.

Ive built two pcs for my kids, and they play Guild Wars all the time. The systems were celerons but they played fine.

Now if you want to build an Uber Rig to play Crysis at full res, we could probably do it for about 1200.00 with no monitor.

Lets just see what I can come up with and ill tell you where to get the hardware.

Tell me exactly what games, and what programs he wants to use and ill post a shopping list.

And you can take it or leave it. I love building pc's and you will too if you try it.

If not Just get him a Dell XPS System, they play all the games very, very well! I know I have an XPS 400 and Im running all my games on High Details, with no lagg!

Hope to hear back!

Build it, and they will game!

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Build PC
by moonchild1969 / May 9, 2007 12:17 PM PDT

Thanks for getting back to me. We woulk like to use Vista and play games. Other than that there will be some light photo on correl, I menan light. Other than that he keeps music for his ipod. I hope that helps. As for price would love to get under $1000, but upto $1200. Can not wait to get started !!!!!

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It is possible
by jconner / May 9, 2007 1:35 AM PDT
In reply to: Computer for my Son

If labor (yours) and willingness to shop are not an issue.

Three levels of systems. Priced low to high.

1. Build for purpose - You do it.
2. Buy for purpose - already or custom built and tested hardware, maybe O/S
3. Standard out of box - General purpose, name brand, software, support and warranty included.

For the dedicated gamer, then the first is usually the way they go.
For the non computer type but a gamer then number two.
Then for the parent who doesn't want to waste time doing research and learning all about hardware, software and mixing and matching such the last.

For those of us who always take things apart and enjoy the challenge then number one is the only way to go whether we save money or not.

If you decide to build a gamer my priority in order of cost selection would be:

1. Best graphics card you can afford (PCI-X)
2. Case with exceptional ventillation.
3. High quality Power supply again best you can afford.
4. Motherboard that supports good FSB speed and overclocking and lots of memory. Many good choices. Overclocking requires knowledge so for the initial build you may stay at default levels.
5. SATA hard drive(s) preferably two rather than one. Better two smaller than one big one. SCSI if you can afford them.
6. SATA DVD/CDR Combo, but PATA (aka IDE) if you have to save money and the motherboard supports it.
7. As much memory as you can afford - in this case more is better than best quality. eg. 4GB medium price vs. 2Gb expensive. Especially if planning on VISTA.
8. Core Duo processor (AMD equivalent if you prefer). Best you can afford.
9. Surround sound - sound card
10. Gamers keyboard and mouse or control
11. 19" or 20" monitor(s)
12. Speakers.

Once you've priced everything out and find it exceeds your budget start at the bottom and work your way to the top cutting costs. My opinion and I'm sure many have a different one. I am not a gamer but have built lots of systems targeted at specific applications.

Some will give you their gamer specific selections. I tend to order things in terms of how much use they get or where the real performance needs are. If you get stuck with two comparable options then look at performance and reliability at places like Tom's hardware reviews.

It's fun to build a computer and rewarding when it works well and saves you money but be sure and put it in perspective in terms of your labor and learning and costs for repairs if something fails.

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