I am Kid CLD and I am here to save Gotham City!: Buying a Gaming PC.

Kid CLD Screen shot DCUOOkay I am really Joe Serrago and I am playing DC Universe online. Yes I am a MMO gamer, the secrete is out. Now while playing this I was thinking that I would like to get some of my friends to play with me, but sadly many of them don’t have what I consider a gaming PC.  So I thought what would I tell people what to look for when buying a starter gaming PC.
Now I want you to understand this post is about BUYING a starter gaming PC. There are gamers that think that the only way to go is to build your own, and if you have the time, the money and the skills to do that go for it. However if you just want to get a decent system to get on World of Warcraft this is a pretty good starting point.

1) Go Desktop

Yes there are gaming laptops. Alienware make some incredible machines. They also make some expensive machines. Not exactly what I would recommend for a casual gamer. Also with most laptops your much more limited in what you can and can’t upgrade. Also my laptop is where my work lives, and some of us (myself included) might not get as much done if at any point we can hop into our favorite game and make several hours fly buy.

2) Go BIG.

Many PC manufactures have what is called a low profile chassis. These are designed to be compact, and not take up a lot of desk space. These are perfect for a cramped office, but not for gaming. Low Profile chassis usually have power supplies,  video cards and other components designed just for that case. So finding replacement parts for it is a challenge, finding upgrades is more like a quest (they may or may not exist).  Also full size PC towers have better air flow more space in the case means more air in the case and its easier to keep the parts cool and working well.

3) Go AMD

I know I can’t believe what I am saying myself. I have been an Intel fan for years. But most of my computer needs in the past have been business centered. AMD however has become the gaming processor of choice. Why? Overclocking.

“Overclocking is the process of making a computer or component operate faster than the clock frequency specified by the manufacturer by modifying system parameters. One of the most important techniques is running at a higher clock rate (more clock cycles per second; hence the name “overclocking”), but other parameters, such as CPU multiplier and memory timings, can also be changed and would be considered to be overclocking. Operating voltages may also be changed (increased), which can increase the speed at which operation remains stable. Most overclocking techniques increase power consumption, generating more heat, which must be dispersed if the chip is to remain operational.” (Wikipedia  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overclocking)

 

PC world did an article about it a few year go Overclocking for newbies It still holds up. Now it does say that you can overclock an Intel processor, but a lot of Intel technology is setup not to allow overclocking so its just easier to take it out of the equation. Also AMD has some software called AMD Overdrive that lets you control your overclocking, fan speed, monitor temperatures and help you tune your system for your gaming needs that from Windows. Perfect for a beginner or for someone that is a little gun shy about modifying system settings.

 

4) On board graphics wont cut it.

Okay turn your desktop around. Go ahead and look at where your monitor is plugged into. If its plugged into a port right next to all the others its probably got on board graphics, and that fine for excel sheets and Facebook but not for Call of Duty. Trying to game with on board graphics is like towing a boat with a Toyota Camry you might be able to do it but its not recommended and your car will not be better off for it. Dedicated graphics cards usually have there own processors, memory and cooling systems. They take a lot of weight off the other parts of the computer and give the kind of visual experience most want from there games. Also as games get more advanced and more graphic intensive, I would rather swap out my graphics card then my whole machine. (See tips 1 and 2)

Now no matter what you do buy, your probably going to be dropping about $500-$700 on the computer. I know a lot of money for a few games, but remember unlike a console this machine can pull double duty doing all the normal tasks a PC can do. The enhanced graphics might not help you when your running excel, but they wont hurt either.

Need any help with finding the right system or maybe updating your old one Lanterns Light is here to help feel free to contact us.

 

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