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Thread: Living Room Rig for under £300

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    Living Room Rig for under £300

    Just come across this at gamespot. Could be useful for anyone looking to build a cheap PC for playing Steam games on:

    http://uk.gamespot.com/features/6393863/?page=1

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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    The PSU and graphics cards are extremely poor choices.

    The build is also closer to around £370 as you do need Windows too.

    An example of poor reasoning in the build:
    "The more modern 7750, which is also a budget card (albeit one that requires external power from your PSU), is currently selling for just a few pounds more, and in many cases outperforms the GTX 640. Whether the increased numbers of frames per second are worth the extra power and noise requirements is up to you."

    Wait second,what about all the HD7750 cards which are still bus powered?? There are a number of V2 cards which have much higher clockspeeds which require external power,but are identified by having at least a 900MHZ core clockspeed.

    The HD7750 is 40% faster:

    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Z...GT_640/28.html

    The HD7750 has better performance per watt too:

    http://www.techpowerup.com/reviews/Z...GT_640/29.html

    The GT640 he has chosen is around £75,and an HD7750 GDDR5 single slot with a low noise cooler is around £82:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/1gb-s...ink-dvi-i-hdmi

    Here is a review:

    http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/graphi...vtx3d-hd-7750/

    So the HD7750 GDDR5 costs 10% more ,is 40% faster and has better performance per watt. Even the 900MHZ version will be competitive I suspect. Extra power and noise - really??

    There is also the bus powered HD6670 GDDR5 which is 10% slower than a GT640 according to TPU:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/1gb-a...ort-dvi-i-hdmi

    It is under £60.

    Moreover,a Powercool PSU??

    Edit!!

    Look at the TH and Anandtech review of the GT640:

    http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/geforc...w-32457-3.html

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/5969/z...-640-review-/9

    The HD6670 GDDR5 is faster in more modern games.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 04-09-2012 at 02:34 PM.


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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    More quotes:

    "For a PSU we went with a 450 Watt modular box from Powercool. It's not the cheapest PSU out there, but with an 80 Plus power rating and modular cables, it'll keep the inside of the case looking tidy, and should provide ample power for the Steam Box and handle any future upgrades to the CPU or GPU. There are lots of cheaper options, but the key to PC building is to NEVER cheap out on the PSU, lest you fry your freshly purchased components. "

    Eh,what??

    "For RAM we went a single 4GB stick from Corsair's XMS3 range, which is plenty for the box, and leaves a slot free for future upgrades."

    Eh,what??


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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    the key to PC building is to NEVER cheap out on the PSU
    That's why you bought a £30 modular PSU then, Gamespot? OK, it's not ultimately el-cheapo, but I wouldn't trust a non-modular 450W PSU at £30, let alone a modular, and allegedly 80+, one...

    EDIT: I almost LOLed when I saw this snippet in the PSU description: "supports the newest Athlon 64 CPU by AMD". What about the Phenom, Phenom II, FX and A-series, though?

    EDIT2: You know, maybe we're being a bit unfair. It's priced around the same as the 500W Coolermaster Elite, the 430W Corsair CX V2, the 500W OCZ CoreXStream, and the 450W XFX Core series. I guess it might be a passable low-end PSU. Wonder if anyone's ever done a proper review of it... EDIT2b: Nope, no decent reviews of it
    Last edited by scaryjim; 04-09-2012 at 04:01 PM.

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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    If Valve did build a Steam box, it would probably be Linux based. They are putting quite a bit of effort into that now.

    That would drop the Windows license cost, but push you very heavily towards an Nvidia graphics card.

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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    If Valve did build a Steam box, it would probably be Linux based. They are putting quite a bit of effort into that now.

    That would drop the Windows license cost, but push you very heavily towards an Nvidia graphics card.
    But the build guide is using Windows though!! The GT640 is poor value for money for a gaming card if you are using Windows.

    AFAIK,from the Linux heads I know,the Nvidia proprietry driver is better than the AMD one,but AMD actually has better open source support now(!).

    However,remember the Wii U uses an AMD GPU,and both the PS4 and X Box Next are probably using one too,and two of those are not using MS operating systems.


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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    I would also change the case to something more compact that will be living room friendly. Say something like:
    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/cas...-case-review/1

    Sound issues need to be considered so just putting any fan(s) might not work out.

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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    Hmm if the steam Linux rumours/blog is true then I'm sure that's what it'd be but they'd probably try to compete with console prices. I can see it being £200 with Valve making a loss per sale and make it up on game sales.

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    root Member DanceswithUnix's Avatar
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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    Quote Originally Posted by stothy View Post
    Hmm if the steam Linux rumours/blog is true then I'm sure that's what it'd be but they'd probably try to compete with console prices. I can see it being £200 with Valve making a loss per sale and make it up on game sales.
    Valve have been working closely with Intel on driver improvements, so they could just target integrated graphics.

    We are used to comparing PC graphics, but remember the Playstation 3 is basically an Nvidia 7800, by our standards old and rubbish.

    If I was trying to compete with consoles, I would probably use a llano cpu and boot off a £20 usb3 pendrive (for cost and silent use).

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    Re: Living Room Rig for under £300

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    ... the Playstation 3 is basically an Nvidia 7800 ...
    Which is coincidentally what my step-son is using in his gaming rig - and getting on perfectly with.

    I'd agree with Llano if trinity wasn't just around the corner, but if I was a system integrator planning a steam box right now I'd be desperate to get my hands on trinity. I certainly wouldn't waste my time with a cheap-ass Intel solution and a lower-end discrete graphics card: mini-itx, high end trinity, PicoPSU. Job done

    Actually, if I was an AMD rep watching all this I'd be working with the open source community and Steam directly to optimise my open source OpenGL drivers on linux to make this happen on AMD hardware. Get a good open source VLIW4/GCN driver out for the release of trinity, and you suddenly become the star of linux gaming, right in time for Steam on Linux. Come on AMD, get with the program...

    EDIT: Hmmmm, or thinking more cynically - what better way to shift all that alleged excess inventory of Llano parts...

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