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  1. #1

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    Default Decent Gaming PC?

    Hi all. I just recently ordered a Compaq computer. The basic specs are:

    Athlon 3200+ 2.2ghz processor speed
    512 mb of ram
    160 gb harddrive

    I'm planning on buying either a Radeon 9600, or a 9800 Pro video card.

    Would this be ok for my gaming needs? Or should I have gone with another brand? One of the reasons I went with this one was for the price. I'm not a hardcore gamer by any means, and figured that this would be adaquate enough. Let me know. Thanks.

    Thomas

  2. #2

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    The specs sound alright, esp if you're buying a new video card. I'd be worried about the brand Compaq... they're not exactly known for quality components. Things I'd be slightly worried about would be your motherboard, and definitely power supply (cheap comp mfgs usually skimp on power supplies - they don't expect you to change much of anything and don't leave much leeway if you decide to). Ditto with the hard drive - don't be surprised if it craps out on you after two years.

    This isn't to make you worry - I know lots of people with compaqs / similar name brands that have had no problems with their computers for 5 years. I'm just a parts snob with computers and don't expect anything that is cheap to last :)
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

  3. #3

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    Get the 9800 pro and you should be fine. I recommend the MSI 9800 pro 8X AGP for around $200 at newegg.com. With the XP SP2 drivers, it automatically upgrades it to a 9800 XT. I have it and it works great. Great card at that price point.

  4. #4

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    Default

    Thanks for the suggestions. One question, though. I've heard that with the Windows XP SP 2, there were some problems concerning certain games, like Knights of the Old Republic. They would crash, or they wouldn't start up at all. Do you know if this has been fixed?

  5. #5

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    No idea, I haven't had any problems with my games. You can install the drivers yourself, but I have just found it to be really cool that SP2 installs the drivers itself when I do a reformat. It takes one of the longer steps out of the process. Thats all.

    Otherwise you should have a really good gaming PC. When you get around to it I would upgrade to a gig of RAM, but thats getting picky.

    Make sure you get a good optical or laser mouse. I like my Logitech MX500. The MX510 can be had for the same price and is supposedly even more responsive.

  6. #6

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    Thanks. The optical mouse is a must for me. I talked my mother in law into getting one 2 yrs ago, and she didn't think there would be any difference. She thought wrong. Every other mouse she had, it would start acting up every 2 months or so, and she has had no problems at all with the optical. But anyways, I appreciate all of the suggestions. Keep em coming.

  7. #7

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    What sound card does it come with? You gonna upgrade it?

  8. #8

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    Stay away from Compaq. If you must purchase a pre-built computer go with Dell. But since you plan on installing a new video card why not build it from scratch.

    Also, 512 RAM is standard now, try to get over a gig. RAM is also very cheap now.

    And lastly, if you buy a pre-built comp, sometimes you are not able to upgrade.

    Good Luck!
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  9. #9

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    i love my Dell XPS, my roommate just got an Alienware Area 51
    nice computer, but its not that much better than mine, bigger case with 1 more fan, slightly better processor (p4 3.2 vs p4 3.4) and a bigger video card (128 vs 256). except mine was cheaper AND came with a 19" monitor and fax/copy/scanner printer
    but his customer service isnt in india though
    with what you have you should be ok for most games, i foresee no problems:)
    -Cody
    Music is like candy, you have to get rid of the rappers to enjoy it

  10. #10

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    Well, I finally have it. I'm only using a Radeon 9000 right now, but everything seems to be going great. My games play fine with most of the settings set to high and the resolution at 800x600. I'll probably be getting the MSI 9800 pro that Shizelbs recommended. I haven't picked out a sound card yet, heck, I don't even know if I'll upgrade to one anytime soon. The onboard sound seems to be just fine, at least for my needs. So far, I'm really happy with this computer. Only crappy thing right now is that I have to wait 2 months before I can upgrade the video card....

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