Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Ultimate Gaming Computer

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Perhaps this is not the "ultimate" gaming computer, but it's as close as we could get on our limited budget here at Passy World. We are extremely happy with the performance and we are certain it will provide many hours of enjoyment in the years to come.

Our goal was to build a high performance Gaming PC that would last at least 2 or 3 years, with "Santa" supplying the parts. Here are the specs of the PC we have built.

Passy World Gaming PC Specifications:
  • Motherboard – Asus Sabertooth X58 LGA1366
  • CPU - Intel Core i7 950
  • CPU Cooler – Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus
  • RAM - Kingston HyperX 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 1600
  • PSU - Antec Earth Watts 750W
  • Storage - Western Digital 1TB Caviar Black 7200RPM
  • Optical Drives – 2X Asus Lite Scribe
  • Graphics Card – Gigabyte Radeon HD5870
  • Case – Antec 902
  • Monitor - Asus VH242H 24”
  • Keyboard - Alienware TactX Keyboard
  • Mouse - Razer Deathadder
  • Speakers - Creative Inspire T6160
  • O/S - Windows 7 64bit Home
My son actually did all the research and pricing for the PC, and I am very impressed with what he came up with as the final solution.

We purchased nearly all of our components from Computer Parts Land "CPL" here in Melbourne Australia, and their service, advice, and component availability is absolutely awesome. Check out their website at:
http://www.cpl.net.au/


The Creative speakers were obtained from MSY Computers, http://www.msy.com.au/ who are also a great supplier of PC components, and located not far from CPL in suburban Melbourne.

We are particularly delighted with the Antec 902 Case which was great value at around $100. We had wanted to use a Coolermaster HAFX but it was twice the price, and we could not stretch the budget that far.

Even though the Antec 902 is only a mid tower case, it has plenty of room, (including room for big GPU's like the 5870). It is also very well constructed, with high quality parts, fans, and drive bays.

In particular, the 902 has this massive big fan on top of the case for awesomely powerful cooling.

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For Memory we were going to use "G Skill Ripjaws 8GB (4x2GB) DDR3 1600" but since it was not available we switched to Kingston, which has worked out fine.

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The CPU Cooler was the trickiest part of the build, as we had not done one of these before, and the fold out printed instructions were not any good for complete beginners.

However, You Tube to the rescue, and we found this perfect video about how to install this awesome after market cooler.



Another great set of videos we watched before building our PC was this great set by "PCWizKid". These videos are excellent, and show most of the main steps needed to build your own PC.



There are three parts in the series, and this is Part Two.



Here is the third and final part of the series. We highly recommend you watch these if you are ever thinking about building your own PC.



And one additional video, all about "Cable Management" inside your PC case.




One small problem we had during the build was getting Windows 7 to recognise that we had 6 Gig of memory, and not 4 Gig. However, this was easily solved by switching off the PC, swapping the RAM sticks around with each other "musical chairs" style, and then rebooting the machine.

A fantastic thing we must mention about ASUS Motherboards is their use of a tiny PINs circuit board to make front-of-case to motherboard connection a breeze. It was hard to get a good photo of this, but here is our best attempt.

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Basically, we just plug the case leads (which Antec had labelled brilliantly), into the appropriate miniboard plug, and then plug the minboard, into the Motherboard pin set... too easy!!

The Driver Discs that came with our Hardware were all very simple to use. They worked a treat, making the installation final steps very quick and easy.

For connecting to Wireless Internet we used a Netgear WG111V2 USB wireless adapter. We downloaded the Windows 7 drivers using our laptop, and saved them onto a USB stick. They installed okay, but as per Internet forums it is important not to install the Netgear management system, and to instead select the option to use Windows for handling the wireless network connection.

We lashed out spending a few dollars on a Razer Gaming Mouse, and we are very happy with this unit, especially its glow in the dark illumination.

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The Alienware Keyboard was worth every cent of the $130 we spent ordering it online from Malaysia. It also came with only four days remaining until Christmas, which we thought was totally awesome service by Dell.

The glow in the dark fully lit Alienware keyboard is absolutely awesome.

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A full set of different color combinations available for the keyboard is shown as part of the following Wondershare Slideshow.

This slideshow has photos from the build of our Ultimate Gaming PC which was done right here at Passy World.

(Note that it is quite a big slideshow and may take a while to load in).

Press the play button to start the Slideshow.



(If you are interested in buying Wondershare for making your own slideshows, then then click this link: http://www.wondershare.com/ and then under Products and Digital Photo Tools locate "Flash Gallery Factory Deluxe". (We have been using this particular product for quite a while here at Passy World and highly recommend it).

Finally we need to thank our good friend Laurie C, who helped us out with the final setting up and performance testing of our new PC.

Performance testing shows that our PC has nearly perfect scores in all areas except for drive access speed, (simply because we are not using a Solid State Drive.)

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Some of the best gaming fun the boys have had so far, is playing with the foam packaging that came with the Antec Case.... In fact it appears they've just invented the world's first human dual core processor..lol...

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Anyway, we're off to get into some serious COD action on the new PC.

Enjoy,
Big Passy Wasabi

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