Author Topic: The Skyrim upgrade  (Read 18739 times)

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Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #15 on: August 08, 2013, 08:52:06 AM »
Reggie! Time for more computer advice!

So I've been working off of a hand-me-down desktop for years, haven't bought one since 2005... The hand-me-down has always been vaguely low-end and crippled.

I upgraded for Skyrim...works fine. Medium settings. Happy with that. Total War Rome II is around the corner (http://wiki.totalwar.com/w/Rome_II_Recommended_Specs), though, and, overall, this hand-me-down is showing its age and choking more often than not. It's also running Vista which, I realize now, has slowly driven me insane... And the hard drive is just 70 gigs, which is starting to feel like something ancient and evil. (Rome II needs 35 gigs!)

So! I want to upgrade. I have a slush fund of around a grand. I want a computer that can handle somewhat high-end games (my needs are few -- I consider Skyrim and the Total War games high end, and spend 90% of any rare gaming time I have on stuff like Crusader Kings 2 and Europa Universalis -- http://www.paradoxplaza.com/games/europa-universalis-iv -- not too demanding). So I probably don't need, like, the uber-geek gaming system. Honestly, most of my time is spent working in Word or staring blankly at Doctor Who repeats because I've just read 1600 pages of terrible novels and can't think anymore.

So a reliable system, with plenty of space, speedy RAM, and a decent graphics card so I can build houses in Skyrim and never actually fight anyone. Or, alternatively, become a Roman emperor and fight everyone. I plan to keep my old monitor and speakers, so I just need the computer.

I went to Dell, HP, etc...and the way they sell computers now has changed quite a bit since 2005! You kind of get what they want you to get instead of letting you build up the good stuff. And, when you do get a chance to upgrade the insides, you end up in expensive (and somewhat overkill) Alienware land... It seems like the thinking of those webpages is "The customer is either (a) Nacho's grandfather or (b) fans of The Big Bang Theory."

Reggie, I trust your computer advice. And whoever else has two cents -- always welcome. I'll also nip an argument in the bud: No Macs. Period. I don't care if they fellate me while I calmly paint my Skyrim house blue. I'd like to upgrade before the end of the month so I can ride dragons before labor day without framerate issues. If you know what I mean...and I think you do.

Offline monkey!

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2013, 09:26:00 AM »
Best thing to spunk out your money on is a big processor, something like a quad-core 3rd gen. Intel Core i5 or i7 will keep your baby running competitively for quite a few years, and should keep your going fine. RAM/graphics card are obviously important but those are easy to upgrade over the years when top cards become cheaper.
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Offline RottingCorpse

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2013, 05:40:06 PM »
A la carte is pretty much the standard way to buy computers these days, which is ironic because I know less about RAM, processing speeds, video cards, etc than I did when I was younger.

Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2013, 09:13:36 PM »
A la carte is pretty much the standard way to buy computers these days, which is ironic because I know less about RAM, processing speeds, video cards, etc than I did when I was younger.

Wait... What? Because NO site -- Dell, Samsung, HP, Acer, Pcworld, the retailers, etc... -- gives me any choice to customize the guts of the computer. I want it to be a la carte!  It always used to be a la carte but, these days, isn't -- AT ALL. 

Thus the reason for my post in this thread...

If you know of any sites that give you free customization of the specs, PLEASE link them...that's the answer I need.

Offline Sirharles

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2013, 09:53:12 AM »
No big name people will do a la cart.  Strictly from a manufacturing standpoint it makes no sense for them to do it.  You'll have to go local.  Here is the guy we used to buy computers from way way waaaay back in the day.  I have no idea the cost of doing a la cart but it's worth a phone call or a trip to Rocketville.

http://www.gtpc.com/services/personal_new_systems.asp

Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2013, 10:08:10 AM »
it's worth a phone call or a trip to Rocketville.

I haven't gone into a computer store and physically bought a computer since 1990! I'm surprised it's still possible... Does that guy also run a Blockbuster?

Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #21 on: August 09, 2013, 10:31:16 AM »
Okay...the Dell XPS lets you do a la carte! The only one of their lines...

How's this look?

8GB Dual Channel DDR3 1600MHz - 2 DIMMs
AMD Radeon™ HD 7570 1GB GDDR5
16X CD/DVD burner (DVD+/-RW), write to CD/DVD
1TB 7200 RPM SATA Hard Drive 6.0 Gb/s

Total is $750. I figure, at some point down the line, I'll just upgrade the video card on my own... And I can cannibalize RAM from the old computer...

Offline RottingCorpse

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #22 on: August 09, 2013, 11:57:19 AM »
That's what I get for skimming.

Both the last PC I bought (an HP two years ago) and my MacBook were a la carte.  Actually that's not true. My MacBook was a choice out of four different configurations.

Ignore me. I'm in crippling back pain.

Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #23 on: August 09, 2013, 12:28:01 PM »
That's what I get for skimming.

Both the last PC I bought (an HP two years ago) and my MacBook were a la carte.  Actually that's not true. My MacBook was a choice out of four different configurations.

Ignore me. I'm in crippling back pain.

One thing's for sure...computers have changed dramatically since I last went shopping for one. Not just the systems themselves, but the whole approach to selling them. This fucking all-in-one desktop bullshit with touch screens and all that! First time seeing that. I'm both horrified and mystified.

Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #24 on: August 09, 2013, 01:09:33 PM »
I'm going with the config above...will update the soundcard later (and probably won't need to) and grab RAM from the old system. Plus...it's paid for by the contest AND a write-off. Amen.

Offline Reginald McGraw

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #25 on: August 09, 2013, 11:10:24 PM »
Get more RAM.

I do custom builds online via Newegg and/or system max. Tiger direct might.

Offline monkey!

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #26 on: August 10, 2013, 10:36:48 AM »
If you can get 128GB of RAM, Nacho, you'll be fine until the next Doom game comes out.
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Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #27 on: August 10, 2013, 01:13:15 PM »
Yeah. If this trend continues, my next computer (in 2020, right?) will have to be a custom build. Thought about it this time...but then considered my needs and just shut up and went for it.

I have 4 gigs of ram in the old computer, so I'll rip that out.

Offline monkey!

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #28 on: August 11, 2013, 10:22:13 AM »
Will the RAM be compatible with the new motherboard/processor, or is that just a laptop problem?
There will come a day for every man when he will relish the prospect of eating his own shit. That day has yet to come for me.

Offline nacho

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Re: The Skyrim upgrade
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2013, 10:49:00 AM »
Will the RAM be compatible with the new motherboard/processor, or is that just a laptop problem?

Don't know! But cheap enough to upgrade...