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New PC critique
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11198 posts
Hello it's that time again.

I want to spend around $1000 on a mid range PC. I don't need a beast with heaps of storage for all the latest games and pr0n. Just something I can smash noobs at StarCraft II on.

An ATi videocard is a requirement.

Here's what I'm looking at:

Thermaltake V3 case
Intel Core i5 3470 LGA1155 CPU 3.2Ghz 6Mb Cache Ivy Bridge
ASRock B75-PRO3-M B75 4xDDR3 3xSATA3 PCIex16 GBL 4xUSB3.0 HDMI D-Sub DVI-D mATX
Kingmax 8G(2x4G)PC-12800 1600MHZ DDR3
ASUS ATI HD7770 PCI-E 3.0, 1GB 128-bit GDDR5, 1000/4500MHz, DVI, HDMI, DP, DX11.1, Fan
Seagate SATA3 1TB 7200RPM 64mb Cache
LiteON SATA DVD-RW 24X Black
Microsoft Windows 7 Pro 64bit OEM

I already have:

soundcard
monitor
keyboard
mouse
headphones

Your thoughts?
12:11pm 30/09/13 Permalink
system
Internet
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12:11pm 30/09/13 Permalink
Mantorok
Brisbane, Queensland
7009 posts
Needs a SSD.
12:15pm 30/09/13 Permalink
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11199 posts
I thought someone would say that. They seem to have come down in price a lot.
12:25pm 30/09/13 Permalink
kappa
Brisbane, Queensland
2103 posts
If you can wait I think AMD are releasing new gfx cards some time next month (oct).
12:30pm 30/09/13 Permalink
E.T.
Queensland
4762 posts
Dais. I spose you can buy my rig if you want including the 3 matched LG monitors for eyefinity. I've replaced it already.
http://www.ausgamers.com/forums/general/thread.php/3254099

The box I use is the exact same as the one shown in the OP in that thread. I have an i7 and 6 gig of ram in the box with a good after market cooler on the CPU (not over clocked, I'm just picky like that) The box has my ATI 7970 in it and runs everything sweet as.

Let me know if you want more info. I can help get you setup if you need, but I doubt you'd need it.
12:49pm 30/09/13 Permalink
Tollaz0r!
Brisbane, Queensland
14385 posts
Why ATI over Nvidia? What has changed in the last year or so when Nvidia was the requirement? Just asking.
01:40pm 30/09/13 Permalink
Whoop
Brisbane, Queensland
22215 posts
good after market cooler on the CPU (not over clocked, I'm just picky like that)
My stock intel cooler had my CPU sitting on like 60 degrees at idle. I would change it too.
03:26pm 30/09/13 Permalink
E.T.
Queensland
4765 posts
Yeah, from memory Whoop, I think a review I read at the time I upgraded about the stock fan scared me enough to upgrade it.
03:30pm 30/09/13 Permalink
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11200 posts
Yeah I might look in to another HSF.

Sorry E.T., I'm not interested i a second hand system. I don't want the monitors either.

Toll the reason I want ATi is because the GPU scaling in the drivers actually works. I play a lot of old games.
03:44pm 30/09/13 Permalink
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11202 posts
The Noctua NH-L12 sounds good by all accounts. $75 tho :[

I'll probably get it anyway.
03:49pm 30/09/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4292 posts
dais, I got a little closed loop water cooler for around the same price, it looks much cleaner in the case than a whooping big HSF
07:25pm 30/09/13 Permalink
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11203 posts
That one's pretty small. Can't be bothered stuffing around with water cooling.

http://images.bit-tech.net/content_images/2012/12/noctua-nh-l12-review/nhl12-7b.jpg
07:31pm 30/09/13 Permalink
ravn0s
Brisbane, Queensland
17491 posts
Why ATI over Nvidia? What has changed in the last year or so when Nvidia was the requirement? Just asking.


new consoles.
07:41pm 30/09/13 Permalink
RuleofBooKz
Other International
48 posts
lol consoles

even the new ones will be way behind the PC

get nvidia

u will suffer less grief as a PC player
08:25pm 30/09/13 Permalink
ara
Sydney, New South Wales
3791 posts
That one's pretty small. Can't be bothered stuffing around with water cooling.


i am still going to recommend you look at the closed loop offerings from Intel and the like. Water cooling is as easy as normal air cooling these days just heaps more effective and quieter.
08:25pm 30/09/13 Permalink
Audi
Perth, Western Australia
425 posts
new consoles.


ROFL.
08:28pm 30/09/13 Permalink
BladeRunner
Queensland
1417 posts
My stock intel cooler had my CPU sitting on like 60 degrees at idle. I would change it too.


That does not sound right, was it installed on the CPU correctly?

I would not worry about getting ATi just because both consoles are going to be ATi based. There is no guarantee that having a ATi card will do any good anyway. The architecture would probably be a little different and runs on a different OS too.
03:38am 01/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4295 posts
i am still going to recommend you look at the closed loop offerings from Intel and the like. Water cooling is as easy as normal air cooling these days just heaps more effective and quieter.



ask manatrok how hard I found installing it

I did it while sitting on his armchair trying to decipher the instructions, took all of about three minutes
10:52am 01/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
118 posts
I built a 4760 (non K) for a mate recently, and it was running at about 90% on BF3.

I'm worried a 3470 won't have the grunt you need for the future.

For SC2 though, should be fine as long as you aren't a fan of custom maps such as desert strike.
09:44am 02/10/13 Permalink
Mass
Brisbane, Queensland
1453 posts
I'd get the Samsung 256Gb 840 SSD $179 at umart, will be the single biggest speed increase you can get.

I also stick with ATI cards these days my 7970 just runs.

I'd also think about upping the RAM to 16Gb, won't cost much more and then you can ditch running with a swap file all together and enjoy a small speed improvement and it won't cause too much activity on your brand new SSD.
10:21am 02/10/13 Permalink
konstie
Melbourne, Victoria
2157 posts
hijacking the thread (sorry dais you sexy man). really want to try out watercooling to see what the fuss is about; running a 5 year old rig, so going to spend some mulla this time.

CPU Intel Core i5 4670K LGA1150 CPU 3.4Ghz 6Mb Cache Haswell
MOBO ASRock Z87-EXTREME6, Socket 1150, 4x DDR 3 Slots,2x PCIE x16, 1x PCIE x4, 1x PCI-E x1, 2x PCI,
HDD1 Samsung 256GB SSD 840BW Pro SATA3 2.5
HDD2 Western Digital Green 2TB 64MB SATA 3
GFX1 Sapphire ATI HD 7970 OC EDITION V2 PCI-E 3.0, 3GB 384-bit GDDR5, 1000/5800 Mhz, D-DVI, HDMI, 2x
GFX2 N/A
RAM1 G SKill 16G(2x8G)DDR3 2400Mhz PC3-19200 F3-2400C11D-16GXM
RAM2 N/A
PSU Thermaltake EVO Blue 2.0 750W 80+ GOLD
CASE Thermaltake VN700M1W2N Overseer Full Tower w Docking/ USB3.0/NOPSU 
COOLING Thermaltake Bigwater 760pro
SOUND TBA
OS Microsoft Windows 7 Pro 64bit

thoughts???????
04:07pm 02/10/13 Permalink
TiT
Brisbane, Queensland
5859 posts
with windows 7 not supporting Directx 11.1 i would always go for windows 8.1

and i dont like your case. I have Thermaltake and its s***. mainly because the clips are made of plastic and just fails with the video card. Ofcurse they have probably fixed this now
04:10pm 02/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4302 posts
unless youre running all your media thru the PC, dont worry too much about sound card,

water cooling is a great option for keeping the temps and sound down, simple

that said, that card is going to the be loudest thing (other than case fans maybe) I personally would ditch the ATI, and grab a high end gainward phantom and that will keep not only the rig powerful, but it will barely whisper
04:17pm 02/10/13 Permalink
TiT
Brisbane, Queensland
5860 posts
just watercool ya gpu as well :)
04:20pm 02/10/13 Permalink
Spook
Brisbane, Queensland
36571 posts
i dont get why so many ppl complain about pc noise. maybe it was due to running amd k6's back in the day, but i expect my pc to make noise. i dont even hear it.

pretty sure i would feel weird if i had a pc that didnt at least acknowledge that it was turned on.
04:49pm 02/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
125 posts
The new consoles will be one of 2 things: Noisy, or Slow.
05:43pm 02/10/13 Permalink
DK
Brisbane, Queensland
908 posts
OP why no haswell?
06:19pm 02/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4303 posts
The new consoles will be one of 2 things: Noisy, or Slow.


nar, not really, they make a big effort to be a quite as they can,

now if they stay whisper, that is another question, infact pretty sure most consoles are designed (and have been designed for some time) to make as little noise as they can
06:25pm 02/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
127 posts
nar, not really, they make a big effort to be a quite as they can, now if they stay whisper, that is another question, infact pretty sure most consoles are designed (and have been designed for some time) to make as little noise as they can

I'm talking about unavoidable physics here. They want to pack 300w+ of electrical gear in a little box. It needs active cooling.

The more wattage, the more noise, as per my reference. - We are almost at the limit of power:performance with silicone wafers.
06:44pm 02/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4305 posts
they deal with the same/greater heat in laptops, heatpipes make no noise, and most of noise in laptops comes from the form only allow the use of tiny fans, a problem easily overcome in a console

300w+ isn't alot of heat to vent in the grand scheme of things, hell my pc makes less noise than my DVR, or infact my xbox 360 (which is about a year old, and pretty dust free) infact my UPS's little fan makes more noise than my pc at idle and it is all less loud than the DVD spinning up (oh and my PC would be make a metric butt ton more heat than the next gen consoles)

there are no " unavoidable physics" in this, fact is while there is alot more heat than in past consoles, there are many many design options open which aren't "just stick more fans in" there is a butt load of surface area for passive cooling, and the main heat generating parts can be placed at the rear, with some heat pipes to channel most of the heat to the back, where a low rpm fan (or two) can remove it from the case done without an increase in noise
07:02pm 02/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
128 posts
Your PC has a much larger surface area with it's heatsinks to dissipate the heat.

My PC would consume around 800 watts loaded up, but it's whisper quiet because of it's inherent size allowing it to fit 2 560 rads. 20% on the rad fans, 30% on the water pump. When I was running the system on air, it was stupidly loud due to the same heat with a smaller surface area dissipating the heat.

Most laptops use small fans yes, but they also have a direct channel of air being pulled through it. I can see a console with a laptop-type intake clogging up in a few weeks of heavy play.
07:10pm 02/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4306 posts
consoles have a much larger intake, and outlet than laptops, and heavy play or not, most people tend to dust around their joint every now and then, and pretty sure after a few months (the time I would give it till it clogs) you'd, I dont know, clean the big arse dust cloud of your console

look at your current consoles, most already have an inlet, and outlet for air, throw in some better heat management (thru heat pipes etc) and even if the fans fail, i'd bet you'd get a good bit of play out of them before they fail and need to cool down, or they might just throttle down like some PC's, give you a little warning display or something, but the fact of the matter is, there isn't some limit in heat management that they are approaching, active cooling is a fan btw, all the sony and microsoft consoles have had them, they have been common for near 15 odd years in consoles, I can't see anything more active happening, they'll be working on passive designs to manage the heat, just as they always have
07:21pm 02/10/13 Permalink
konstie
Melbourne, Victoria
2158 posts
with windows 7 not supporting Directx 11.1 i would always go for windows 8.1


i had windows 8 in originally, but was concerned about the backlash on here ;)

I have Thermaltake and its s***. mainly because the clips are made of plastic and just fails with the video card.


Yeah, my roommate has this case so i sussed it out beforehand. seems to have enough room between video card and hdd which was a concern for me. also scoping out the interwebs, the thermaltake watercooler and case seem to fit well together. not convinced though!
09:06pm 02/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4310 posts
I have a fractal XL case , which on the plus side keeps the HD's well removed from the video card if you want, (there are 6 or 8 bays under the board next to the PSU)

the only downside is the weight, it is f*****g heavy (steel, plus size, plus the fact it is thick steel, plus sound deadening, and the fact you can fit so damn much in there)

the only other downside is if your using a full sized board, some mobo designs mean you might not be able to toss a third video card in

but is does look nice and clean, all the dust filters are hidden, but easy to get to and clean
09:16pm 02/10/13 Permalink
TiT
Brisbane, Queensland
5863 posts
yeah the problem with my kandalf case is that it came with clips to clip video card to the case. ofcourse these snap off once i replaced my gtx 260 as my 670 is double the size and it would fit in correctly. i ripped it all out and started using good old screws again.

i am also looking at purchasing a computer in the next couple of months, but still dont know what case to get. i really want one with lots of dust filters as my place is pretty dusty.
10:31pm 02/10/13 Permalink
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11205 posts
I'm worried a 3470 won't have the grunt you need for the future.


It's ok, I'll just upgrade it to an i7 one day when they're super cheap. Probably put more RAM in too, as well as a better videocard. It seems fairly future proof.

Thanks for all the help guys.
10:55pm 02/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
132 posts
all the sony and microsoft consoles have had them, they have been common for near 15 odd years in consoles

Consoles weren't 300+watts 15 years ago. Ultimately though, they won't be noisy, because they will be slow. Cooling 2Ghz cores isn't a difficult feat. If it was more the case of 4-5Ghz cores (since clock speeds directly impact game performance and is on the want list for a real gaming machine) then it would be noisy.

.i am also looking at purchasing a computer in the next couple of months, but still dont know what case to get. i really want one with lots of dust filters as my place is pretty dusty.

Worst case you can buy dust filters and some 3M velcro strips to mount them.
10:16am 03/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4316 posts
Consoles weren't 300+watts 15 years ago. Ultimately though, they won't be noisy, because they will be slow. Cooling 2Ghz cores isn't a difficult feat. If it was more the case of 4-5Ghz cores (since clock speeds directly impact game performance and is on the want list for a real gaming machine) then it would be noisy.


cooling that much power isn't that hard dude, I think you're thinking about it being harder than it is
10:23am 03/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
136 posts
If that's your opinion after all the news about the xbox engineers fighting heat problems and both manufactuters working out how far they can clock the CPU before thermal issues, I guess we have nothing left to discuss.
10:36am 03/10/13 Permalink
copuis
Brisbane, Queensland
4317 posts
they were also testing to see how far they could clock it in a massive range of temps, fact is they would have been working on making the console work in 40degree heat,
10:43am 03/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
138 posts
Well that's how we test our LED arrays for streetlighting, but up at 45 degrees. It hasn't been a straight forward process like it was with earlier models of the consoles though, even with the cores being much slower to the current generation of PC.

None of this bothers me as I won't be buying one, just chiming in.
10:54am 03/10/13 Permalink
dais
Brisbane, Queensland
11238 posts
I picked up my new PC today and it goes great. I let them build it this time and went with everything in my first post, so no better cooling or SSD. I was trying to keep the cost down as much as possible.

I do still notice the load times but overall it is very nice!
08:38pm 19/10/13 Permalink
Whoop
Brisbane, Queensland
22303 posts
Man after having an SSD in my main PC, I'm deffo getting one in the laptop but I can't justify $250 for a 256gig though (mSATA).

One really odd thing though, after a new SSD and a fresh install of windows in my PC, it sits on the "loading windows" screen for ages. With my old SSD it used to be lightning fast. (you'd hardly even see that loading screen at all) What gives? I blame gremlins.
06:20am 20/10/13 Permalink
Spook
Brisbane, Queensland
36683 posts
should have gone an ssd dude.

once you've had one, you will not ever go back to a non ssd system.

buy one now and install windows on it before its too late!
08:30am 20/10/13 Permalink
Raven
Melbourne, Victoria
8176 posts
Consoles weren't 300+watts 15 years ago. Ultimately though, they won't be noisy, because they will be slow. Cooling 2Ghz cores isn't a difficult feat. If it was more the case of 4-5Ghz cores (since clock speeds directly impact game performance and is on the want list for a real gaming machine) then it would be noisy.

This is what bugs me about modern computing - in order to get higher performance, we've just pushed more power in.

Remember back when a 230W power supply powered everything including the monitor? Now, we have CPUs that chew half that on their own, and GPUs that use that themselves. This isn't advancement the way it should happen. The true chart of performance increases would show a PC restricted to 150W and the performance it can achieve.

In other words: A notebook, NUC or other small-form-factor PC. Those are the true comparisons to PCs of 1990.
10:47am 20/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
317 posts
This is what bugs me about modern computing - in order to get higher performance, we've just pushed more power in.

Remember back when a 230W power supply powered everything including the monitor? Now, we have CPUs that chew half that on their own, and GPUs that use that themselves. This isn't advancement the way it should happen. The true chart of performance increases would show a PC restricted to 150W and the performance it can achieve.

In other words: A notebook, NUC or other small-form-factor PC. Those are the true comparisons to PCs of 1990.

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/power_performance.html

Lots of the low voltage CPU's (5-20w TDP typically) are great for power/performance. Typically with the big chips the TDP is better with each die shrink, but they usually add more cores or up the frequencies at the same time, leaving TDP unchanged.
12:08pm 20/10/13 Permalink
Whoop
Brisbane, Queensland
22304 posts
Remember back when a 230W power supply powered everything including the monitor?
S*** man, I remember when my first PSU that stopped doing that came along. I was mega sad about having to use 2 power points to power my PC :(

I wonder why most modern monitors don't do that? I mean you get ones with external power bricks that run on like 12 volts, I'm sure it wouldn't be hard to supply a back plate and molex connector that you could install in the tower and have it power the monitor too.
03:05pm 20/10/13 Permalink
Raven
Melbourne, Victoria
8177 posts
Because voltage loss is greater and more susceptible to problems at low voltage and using DC. AC at high voltage is much more efficient for transmitting over long cables. While a good quality power supply might be able to provide a more solid, clean voltage, at high power over say 2 or 3 meters of cable it's going to be horrible - you'd be trying to throw up to 150W or power at 12V - so 12.5A - over a fair amount of wire. That would mean a pretty beefy wire, with some substantial loss over the longer distances.
04:12pm 20/10/13 Permalink
Whoop
Brisbane, Queensland
22309 posts
but you look at power bricks that kick out 12v to stuff. thin as s*** cables. My old samsung monitor just used an external power brick and a thin cable up to the monitor to power it. A computer would easily transmit power over that distance. It's not like you're powering the monitor in spaaaaaaaace
07:57pm 20/10/13 Permalink
ph33x
Thailand
329 posts
LED monitors usually draw less than 150W. You're probs referring to CCFL backlit screens, but then again most of those had an IEC lead with 240v straight into the back.

The PSU's back then were just looping the 240v into the monitor output most of the time anyways.
11:20pm 20/10/13 Permalink
Jboy
Other International
73 posts
ASUS ATI HD7770 PCI-E 3.0, 1GB 128-bit GDDR5, 1000/4500MHz, DVI, HDMI, DP, DX11.1, Fan

That's your weak point right up there, a 1GB video card these days isn't worth it. Get one with a minimum of 2GB. Most games will run fine on 1GB but you have to look at the long run. Most Medium-High End AMD cards come with 2GB these days.
11:40pm 20/10/13 Permalink
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