Author Topic: New PC  (Read 6066 times)

Offline Arquebus

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New PC
« on: Thursday 06 July 06 23:55 BST (UK) »
I need to buy a new PC.....Have you ever tried to satisfy yourself what you have chosen is correct for what you want?

It is driving me up the wall.........I ain't a ficko when it comes to PCs but it really does annoy me when the potential supplier leaves it up to me to choose all the options....they are supposed to be the specialists.....how in God's name am I supposed to know what supports what?

After all, if I went to buy a new car, would the supplier expect me to specify brass or titanium 'hydraulic valve lifters'?.....all I want is a performance car that will keep running and stay on the road.....so how should I know that a 4200 AMD dual core processor has a 0.512Mb cache but a 4400 has a 1.0Mb cache and an Intel Pentium D 960 has 4.0Mbcache (2x2Mb!)?

Plus, the specialists ask me to choose what I need to make it handle my files, even though I have explained to them what it needs to do......If they don't know, how are we all expected to know.

All I want is a fast reliable, efficient, good looking PC that doesn't overheat!....which doesn't come with all the usual rubbish on it.

You start out out with a budget in mind of say, 500 and you end up needing to spend 2000........and the best part of that is for stuff we will never need or use (well, not unless the best part of the UK population is stuck in front of their PC all day long playing 'Zoom death by carrot in a suitcase' or some daft game or another.

Having seen enough PC specifications to give Mr Dell an orgasm, I have considered building my own.......until some bright spark sows the seed in my head that two components might be compatible in one PC but not the next, so give the manufacturer the risk......but then we are back to us/me choosing the options.

I am seriously thinking I should go back to string and an abacus.

Anyone got a sensible suggestion?

Al.




ENFIELD...Colchester, DEARY & DIX...Norfolk & Oz, SLOLEY / SYMONS...Fremington Devon, BAKER...Deopham Norfolk, BANTACK...Ixworth, ALLISON...Suffolk / ALLISTON / ELLISTON/E...North East Essex, HOW /HOWE...North East Essex, SWALES..York / Middlesboro,METCALFE...York, WOODS / MOLLETT / GREEN....Norwich, BRATTY...N.Ireland (Derry and Belfast), MORGAN...Bicknor / Coleford Glos. & Middlesboro. FENN / WENDEN / ROOKARD....North East Essex. SNOW...Hampstead & Devon. BULL...Colchester.

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Offline snaggletooth

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Re: New PC
« Reply #1 on: Friday 07 July 06 00:05 BST (UK) »
It comes down to a few simple things....

The basic computer will have a modern processor and mother board. Fine. Just specify a minimum of 1GB of RAM (2 would be better) and that's the main bit.

You will need an optical drive to read and burn DVDs. You will need a reasonable sound card to let you play music/movies. And a respectable video card to drive whatever screen you want.

For storage, the smallest hard drive is about 80GB today, which is quite adequate - just be sure to specify SATA (serial ATA) so that you get a modern hard drive, not something being remaindered off.

Keyboard and mouse - go for wireless...less tangle on the desk!

What else do you need?  :-)

Paul

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Offline Arquebus

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Re: New PC
« Reply #2 on: Friday 07 July 06 00:28 BST (UK) »
Hi Paul,

Firstly I need 2G Ram (big files) to prevent the paging process from taking place.....Paging looks for all the other processes running when not enough Ram available.....unfortunately it looks first at the programs and files I am trying to run......so ultimately I can go and make a cup of tea and have a sandwich while the files are opening.

I then need a dual core processor, because I have several apps running at once.....so I know I am into the possibility of heat (but I ain't going to water cool my PC....thats like trying to lubricate a car engine with nitro-glycerine!)

Sound is immaterial....I need to concentrate on my PC when I am working so bleeps etc are as much as I need really....although I will admit to occassionally playing the odd bits and pieces.....but I don't need 3 million speakers cluttering up my workspace. (And I hate those built in monitor speakers)

I will be using at least 2x160G hard drives, but I won't mirror them ( noise and speed issues) and stripe means just one big disc, so there is is no point in having two.....I will have just C and D drives although some selective partitioning might come into it.

Wireless ain't an option.....interference from elsewhere can be a problem but also the more I find out about it you have to wonder about safety ie cordless phones and brain damage.

Mind you, one twit suggested a wireless router to hook up the two PCs....when they were about 1.0m apart!......apart from the transfer rate being at least half the speed of the Ethernet cable (or a Crossover Ethernet cable) there were more wires than a wired version!

Still I suppose it was abetter suggestion than Dell came up with to connect two computers...........A server.

But....what is 'a respectable video card'.....See? you are making me choose.

Thanks, though....Al.
ENFIELD...Colchester, DEARY & DIX...Norfolk & Oz, SLOLEY / SYMONS...Fremington Devon, BAKER...Deopham Norfolk, BANTACK...Ixworth, ALLISON...Suffolk / ALLISTON / ELLISTON/E...North East Essex, HOW /HOWE...North East Essex, SWALES..York / Middlesboro,METCALFE...York, WOODS / MOLLETT / GREEN....Norwich, BRATTY...N.Ireland (Derry and Belfast), MORGAN...Bicknor / Coleford Glos. & Middlesboro. FENN / WENDEN / ROOKARD....North East Essex. SNOW...Hampstead & Devon. BULL...Colchester.

Offline snaggletooth

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Re: New PC
« Reply #3 on: Friday 07 July 06 02:26 BST (UK) »
You seem to quite well enough equipped to figure one out  for yourself! You aren't gaming, I guess...so something straightforward would do. I like ATI Radeon, but nVidia do good things.

Be Vista ready...it is close enough to get some idea of what will be required there.

Paul

Offline Arquebus

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Re: New PC
« Reply #4 on: Friday 07 July 06 10:13 BST (UK) »
Vista is 64bit innit?......Hmmmmm...

There ain't much software around that supports 64bit yet, but I also think back to how long it took Msoft to sort out all the glitches in XP.....in  fact they are still sorting it out.....will Vista take as long....who knows?


With graphics cards, what I dont know is: do I need 256, 512, 2x cards, what does geforce 7900 have over 7600, or radeon x1600pro?

1600pro even has a fan on it.....Uh?

It is a nightmare for me, so how is Mr Average supposed to get on?

Al.
ENFIELD...Colchester, DEARY & DIX...Norfolk & Oz, SLOLEY / SYMONS...Fremington Devon, BAKER...Deopham Norfolk, BANTACK...Ixworth, ALLISON...Suffolk / ALLISTON / ELLISTON/E...North East Essex, HOW /HOWE...North East Essex, SWALES..York / Middlesboro,METCALFE...York, WOODS / MOLLETT / GREEN....Norwich, BRATTY...N.Ireland (Derry and Belfast), MORGAN...Bicknor / Coleford Glos. & Middlesboro. FENN / WENDEN / ROOKARD....North East Essex. SNOW...Hampstead & Devon. BULL...Colchester.

Offline Falkyrn

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Re: New PC
« Reply #5 on: Friday 07 July 06 10:21 BST (UK) »
The one critical question that must be asked before any of the others can be answered :-

What do you really want to use the machine for ?

Once you've answered that the rest should start to fall into place.

Quote
After all, if I went to buy a new car, would the supplier expect me to specify brass or titanium 'hydraulic valve lifters'?.....all I want is a performance car that will keep running and stay on the road.

This comes back to that first question ..... the supplier would expect you to know what you want to do with the car  ;)

Dual Core or Single Core ....... the smart money is on Dual Core being the path to take especially if you are into video editing.

Memory .... you mention big file sizes ... so 2 Gig would be better.

Video card ..... It's not only gamers who require a powerful video card ... CAD,video and various presentation utiliies all benefit from a good card although not neccessarily the latest

Noise ...... you seem to imply that this is not a problem but trust me you don't want something that sounds like a jet taking off everytime its started up.
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Offline Falkyrn

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Re: New PC
« Reply #6 on: Friday 07 July 06 10:34 BST (UK) »
I should have added that the second most important queation is
"How much do you want to spend"

Although some (including my wife) say that this is more important thsn the other question  ::)
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Offline Arquebus

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Re: New PC
« Reply #7 on: Friday 07 July 06 10:55 BST (UK) »
Up to 1500.....but obviously preferably lower.

Really big Photoshop files (I have one that reached 1.1G) Clients require high res images printed at say A1 size. (one was done at AO).

".all I want is a performance car that will keep running and stay on the road....."

Basically the same criteria, but I don't want the PC almost coming to a standstill just because Outlook does a send/receive or a virus scan/update starts up.

I have tried an AMD3000 with 1G (and 64bit) but this suffered from bad build and mismatched components....ended up with, hanging, unplanned shutdowns, peculiar shutdowns, boot sector failures etc....never got the chance to evaluate it properly because of the problems.

I tried a D..L 820 Pentium D with IG (and mirror drives)....it couldn't cope amongst other things.......I guess paging problems mainly.

Went to a D..L 960 Pentium D with 2G (with stripe drives).....overheated and smoked....dunno why.

What is so odd is that my little old Celeron 2.3 with 700Ram  ( and just C and D drives) is painfully slow, but it can just about keep running.....I am surprised it's not sitting in the corner, a quivering wreck!

Al.





ENFIELD...Colchester, DEARY & DIX...Norfolk & Oz, SLOLEY / SYMONS...Fremington Devon, BAKER...Deopham Norfolk, BANTACK...Ixworth, ALLISON...Suffolk / ALLISTON / ELLISTON/E...North East Essex, HOW /HOWE...North East Essex, SWALES..York / Middlesboro,METCALFE...York, WOODS / MOLLETT / GREEN....Norwich, BRATTY...N.Ireland (Derry and Belfast), MORGAN...Bicknor / Coleford Glos. & Middlesboro. FENN / WENDEN / ROOKARD....North East Essex. SNOW...Hampstead & Devon. BULL...Colchester.

Offline snaggletooth

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Re: New PC
« Reply #8 on: Friday 07 July 06 11:25 BST (UK) »
Vista will have a 32 bit version. You won't want to buy it before early 2008, however, when it will be more stable.

With video cards, try them. If your dealer is worthwhile, he/she will have some choices, and a swap takes no more than 2 minutes. My eyes ain't your eyes...buy what looks good, and can cope with what you do.

Paul
Australia