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GamesRadar: The 2008 PC Builder's Bible

GamesRadar writes: "Getting your hands dirty and building your own system is what separates PC gamers from their console brethren, and it just so happens to be one of the most exciting parts of our hobby. Unfortunately, it's also a pretty daunting process for anyone who hasn't assembled his own rig from scratch. Thankfully, this guide not only gives you all you need to know about every component that goes in your gaming PC, but also thoroughly walks you through the entire building process with detailed instructions and helpful photographs.

We've always written the PC Builder's Bible not only as a guide for new system builders who want more versatility from their computer, but also for hardcore enthusiasts who have to be on the cutting edge of technological innovation. And guess what, that includes us as well. Every piece of hardware you'll find recommended in this book is something we would buy for ourselves. The specs of our custom rigs are actually the same as the machines we've built for ourselves at home. That's because we're just like you; we want the most bang for our proverbial buck. And with more money saved from building a lean super-rig, you'll have more money to spend on the awesome new games to play on it!"

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Dragonopolis4072d ago

Get your PC building (speciallyinformation from a PC hardware review or tech site not some generic gaming site. They usually stay more up-to-date.

ATI 4850 X2 (dual core gpu on one card) 2gb memory is on the horizon (if not out already) will retail around
$400 (price of 2 4850 1gb memory) This card is definitely faster than a single Nvidia 280 GTX

For $50 more than their quoted board for their gaming PC you can get Foxconn Blackops X48 for around $300 (newegg $309). You want a board that has multiple PCI 2.0 (three to be exact 2x16 and 1x4/or1) for expandability (expecially in a gaming machine. You only need one 4850 X2 now but 6 months to a year from now things change quickly and its good to be able to just pop in another 4850 X2 in Crossfire mode when the price drops $100 to $150 in Six months supports CrossfireX here is a discription from Overclockers UK (source from http://www.overclockers.co....

BLACKOPS delivers the ultimate in computing power for todays' most demanding applications, and enables greater agility and control through specialist hardware and BIOS features. Based on the Intel® X48 chipset and supporting processors up to 2000MHz FSB (via overclocking), BLACKOPS is designed for high-performance computing 3* PCIe x16 Gen2.0 slots with CrossFireX™ support enable powerful graphics configurations, whilst unique enthusiast features such as the 4in1 Quantum Cooler enable air/water/LN2 cooling of NB, SB and VRM areas. The highly-configurable Quantum BIOS reveals a huge range of performance settings and tuning capabilities, and coupled with the robust 8 phase Digital PWM, enthusiasts can take their PC to new overclocking heights! The dedicated SONAR daughter card provides high-quality 7.1 channel HD audio, whilst Dual Gigabit LAN, eSATA, FireWire, USB2.0 and SATA RAID are all integrated onboard. Special accessories include the Quantum Flow GPU cooling system, for improving air-flow around graphics cards, and the Quantum Lap motherboard tray for easier access to the motherboard when on the testing bench..

- Supports Intel® Core™2 Quad, Core™2 Extreme, Core™2 Duo, Pentium® Dual-Core, Pentium® Dual-Core and 45nm processors, Socket T (LGA775)
- Chipset: Intel® X48 + ICH9R Chipset
- Front Side Bus: 2000(oc**)1600/1333/1066/800 MHz.
- Memory: Dual channel DDR3 1600/1333/1066800/667 x 4 DIMMs, Max. 8GB
- 3 x PCIe2.0 x16
- 3 x PCI
- 1 x ATA 133
- 6 x SATAII
- 2 x eSATA
- RAID 0, 1, 5, 10; Intel Matrix storage technology and Intel Rapid Recover Technology
- SONAR audio card, Realtek ALC885, 7.1 channel Audio
- Dual Gigabit LAN by BroadcomTM PCIe and PCI LAN chip
- IEEE1394: 2 x 1394a
- 12 x USB 2.0 ports

Anandtech has a great article on this board at: http://www.anandtech.com/mb...

As you can see it has decent options and Foxconn Black OPS is a really good overclocker since gameradar mention overclocking. Even comes with a sound card (decent but not the best) that supports surround sound 7.1 HD so no need to shove out money for a good sound card right away) comes with 2xesata (external SATA) connections further future proof the board its a great board that should keep you going for 3-5 years.

A decent gaming machine is still going to cost you $1500 -$1700 without the monitor but you can have a screaming machine that plays the latest PC games above 1600x1200 for heavy games and most other games plus 1080p Blu-ray if you decide on a blu-ray player I can recommend a better one:

LG Black Blu-ray/HD DVD-ROM & 16X DVD±R DVD Burner SATA Model GGC-H20L (at newegg for $149)

See I just Made up $50 of the $60 dollars more the Foxconn board cost over the current set up and the LG Blu-ray player has dececent DVD read and right speeds for a combo player. It supports Lightscribe and is a much better and faster blu-ray player than the sony one mentioned in the gameradar article. You really don't need a sound card right a way as the built in one will do for awhile until you save up later for a sound card upgrade which saves you another $130 to make up for the $100 difference in graphic cards plus save you about $30. Unfortunately, Intel processors have change much in price so your out of luck there. A dual core extreme will put you into the $2500 dollar bracket as extremes still hanging at $1000 but they are fantastic overclockers.

Anyhow, good luck on building your dream PC hope it works out for you.

Hopefully you will see how it you can modify the recommendations in these articles to increase performance at the same price level.