Ultimate Computer

Introduction

The purpose of this guide is to help you pick the components for a new computer in Q1 of 2008, and will be updated when time permits. This ultimate computer however will definately be able to cope with game and applications through to 2010.

I have assembled various guides here from several websites, from which I have extracted only the essential information. In effect, I will be reviewing reviews, combining charts and prices and pointing out merits and downfalls of each component I consider. The reader is encouraged to read the original articles for more in depth understanding. (I will be assuming that the reader has essential knowledge of computer hardware to the extent that given all the parts, he/she could put them together and install Windows on it.)

I am actually building a new computer myself, so the notes and hardware revies reflect my personal choices. Every computer is different and is a reflection of the purpose of the machine and the level of expertise of the owner. Below, I list what I want out of my new computer:

  1. Gaming: Very Good/Excellent gaming capabilities
  2. Tweaking: Overclockable and optimizable
  3. Cost Efficiency/Resistant to Time: No upgrades needed for 2 years

Turmoil, Confusion, Despair

Where to begin. There are so many choices to make when building your own computer these days. I started my quest simply hunting for deals at TigerDirect or NewEgg, frantically “Adding to Cart” what I thought was the best deal I could find, only to finally realize that I have built a completely inoperable machine. I went back and read some guides, compared prices and built another computer. I bounced around from selecting a cpu, to mobo to video card and trying to reorganize the setup from different starting places. Then I came across an overclocking guide that changed everything I thought I knew.

Deep breathing, sleep, coffee and some more reading ensued. I decided to make a flowchart to guide me through the decision making progress. This quickly becomes complicated in itself, but also reveals the important steps and choices that need to be made. Lets make a start:

Everyone has their Price

This really is the biggest issue. If money wasnt a problem we would just buy the newest, insanely priced equipment we could find or get one of those custom gaming rigs from Alienware. Would be nice. I myself am not a rich man. Not yet anyway 🙂 The price I am aiming for is $1000 (excluding monitor).

In fact I am thinking that by the time I end this document, I should be able to suggest a high and low end/price machine. I will be suggesting specific models for every component as I go along. Hopefully by the end of this, the decision will be made obvious if not at least easier to make.

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