|04-13-08, 05:28 PM||#1|
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
I am having computing geek out love right now.
I have been living with a laptop and an old school P4 for the last three years. I had been playing Crysis at 960x540 all settings LOW, most the Valve games not much better. But really, I've been happy.
Well that all changed this tax season. I finally got some decent coin back this year and decided to upgrade the HTPC/Server. (the one I play games on)
I had $1200 to play with. I already had a 8800GT card (most recent upgrade so that I could even have a chance at playing new games), XFi, and I also had a DVD Burner.
So I needed...
I walked in to my local Fry's after building up a rather sexy New Egg shopping cart just to see if they were close. This way warranty or defectives could be more easily and quickly replaced.
To my surprise Fry's had virtually every component I wanted CHEAPER. So I grabbed a shopping cart and off I went.
Core 2 Quad (9300) -OEM
Kingston HyperX DDR2-1066mhz (4gb)
Vista Home Prem 64
Cooler Master Case and 550w PSU
Gigabyte mboard (P33 express chipset, single PCIe 2.0 slot
Two Maxtor 500GB SATAIIs (for RAID0)
Zalman Silent cpu cooler.
Now since I know I only upgrade every 2 or 3 years I went with products that were on sale and marked down. Hence some of my choices. I NEVER do SLI so that was not an option. From all the benchmarks SLI is really no benefit at the resolution I play. (1280x768 on my DLP projector)
Also, I went with the 500gb Maxtors as I was going to RAID0 them anyway for more speed and larger size. I also went with Vista 64 for my biznass app needs and DX10. (and I already run it on my laptop and am a fan)
I put it all together and again to my surprise the system posted and booted the first time. I have to say the Coolermaster case was a TREMENDOUS joy to work with. (model CM 690) It made the install simple. I never had to go back in to the case after the initial install.
First off...the HD speeds...HOLY PINK JEBUS!!! I am spooling along at 120mb/s average! I came from around 25mb/s as ref. Yes, I pooped in my pants. I had three external SATAs being sucked in to the new computer's RAID all spinning as fast as they could and all three maintaining around 30mb/s to 42mb/s!!! It's like my machine is some coke fiend on an all night bender.
Next...fired up Crysis...it auto detected VERY HIGH for eveything. I chuckled in disbelief. I set the resolution to my native, 1280x768. For the other related bits, 16x Ansio filtering, 2x FSAA and left everything at VERY HIGH except for Game Effects. Which I set to MEDIUM so that I could be sure motion-blur would stay off.
I then started a new game.....about 25 seconds in to the intro I was in need of medical attention. I COULD NOT BELIEVE HOW EFF'N AMAZING THIS GAME LOOKS!!! Smooth running, beautifil textures and details, and the SOUND! My god, most action films wish they had sound this dynamic and intense!!!
Yes, I was quite happy.
This scenerio repeated itself throughout the night as I tried game after game. All I can say is, "damn." I have been missing out for quite some time.
Side notes...the Gigabyte mboard has this auto adaptive over-clocking for dummies I turned on. Seems to have not affected stability at all and it boosts the 2.5ghz 9300 to 3ghz when playing games or jamming the cpu in other apps. Nice.
Back Seat Racing
Coolermaster 690 case, i7-920, 6GB DDR3-1600, 2xEVGA GTX260-216 SC in SLI, EVGA X58 SLI, Tagan 700w PSU, 2TB RAID0 Seagate SATAIIs, Win7 Ult. 64bit.
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