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Old June 25, 2009, 04:58 PM
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Default Help?!? Undecided on what rig to get

Well, summer has started and also means that in September, I go into university. I just wanted to ask you HWC'ers what would be the best computer upgrade path and economical too. Bit of a general question but, right now, I have several options on what I can get which includes just about every single computer possibility including a netbook, mainstream laptop, gaming laptop, a m-itx desktop and/or a gaming desktop. Which combination of the above do you think would suit a person going into mechanical engineering and also likes to game quite a bit (yes, not the best idea in university but i can manage my time )

My total budget is around 1200-1500$ total.

I should also mention I can either sell my current rig, part it out or just keep it and save some money:
E6750 2.66 @ 3.2 with Ninja 2 HSF
OZ 2GB 5-5-5-15 DDR2 800
Seagate 7200.10 320GB
WD10EADS 1TB Green
8800GS with Accelero S1
Corsair 450VX
Antec 300

Right now, I'm thinking of gettin a mainstream laptop with a C2D, intel GMA 4500 for around 600 which I would only need to carry around to type notes and generally no gaming. As for the gaming side, I was thinking of selling my desktop while keeping the 1TB hard drive and using the money to get a new one. Should I get a m-itx rig with what i expect to be a intel quad and a gtx 275 or I should I go for a full size desktop i7 rig with a gtx 260/275 depending on price. I'm assuming the i7 or m-itx cost will be nearly the same ? I should also mention that I will be living in residence on campus if that will affect anything at all?(Smaller size comp for small res:P?)

Then again, my 2 other options (which are cheaper) include grabbing a gtx 275 for my current C2D rig, and get a slightly better laptop. A third option would be gettin a 10-12" netbook and choosing from the i7 or m-itx option.

What do you guys think? Splurge out all at once on getting everything new with option one or save some money for possible future upgrades by going with option 2 or 3? All opinions and feedback are welcome.
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Old June 25, 2009, 05:03 PM
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just going in to school you are probably not going to be able to purchase a new computer('s) for a while so go with option 1 ( make them last too )
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Old June 25, 2009, 05:27 PM
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Agreed, that would be the best choice. Tigerdirect.ca has some crazy good laptop deals atm ($710 off). I personally would bring a gaming laptop to university just for the convenience. My asus G1S gaming laptop would be ideal for your situation, but the desktop does offer much better gaming capabilities. Up to you really, but i would suggest holding off until the end of summer to buy anything, prices are dropping everyday :P.
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Old June 25, 2009, 05:30 PM
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Why not just spend all the cash on a decent 17 inch laptop with a gaming graphics card in it? Could game on it while still being able to use it for school ect. or spend less on the notes PC and get a netbook which will provide you with a full days battery life while still being plenty fast enough for what you need and leaving you more money for your gaming PC.

My question is why do you want a M-ITX? Why not just a decent Matx lan build if your looking for something small, or a normal full ATX C2Q gaming build? Secondly how do you propose to fit a GTX 275 into an Mitx board and then after that into an Mitx case? do you know how small either of those are? I dont know of any M-Itx case that can A) fit a GTX 275 into them and B) come with or eneable the use of a large enough PSU to run the GTX 270 or even a GTX 260. Your better off going with a M-Atx motherboard, weather you go i7 or C2Q is up to you, and setting it up in a m-Atx case that supports full length video cards and PSUs, Im pretty sure the NZXT Rogue will fit either of those video cards.
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Old June 25, 2009, 05:44 PM
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Actually, a gtx 260 can fit into a silverstone sg05b with a zotac 9300 if you cut out part of the front fan mount on the case, seen it on [H] forums and since the 275 and 260 are the same length, a bit of mod work is what I plan on doing to get it to fit if I go that route. As for the psu, $50 off newegg gets you an athena 400w (not the best but thats the best in that form factor) to run it. Personally I don't like matx cases since they don't look that good and don't like their desk 'footprint' since with a full size desktop I can put on the ground without worrying about stepping on it. Also, with an upright matx case, you might as well go for full atx since vertical space is much easier to find lol.

However, as I think about it, I like your idea of spending less on the notebook and going for a larger 10/12" netbook instead. Not only cheaper but better battery life too as you mentioned.

Oh and as for gaming notebooks,Gateway P-7805u FX, 9lbs O.o that'll be a pain to carry around. Wish they still made the hp dv5t, cheapest 15.4" laptop with a 9600m in it
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Old June 25, 2009, 05:54 PM
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Blah I made a post but it didn't og through.

Since you're going to University, why not just keep your rig and move it into residence along with all your other stuff, assuming you're moving into residence. Just upgrade to an ATI 4850 or 4830, or NVIDIA GTS 250 or GTX260. Those are good upgrades to your 8800GS. Then maybe get some more RAM and you're basically good to go. Games are more dependent on GPU than CPU. What resolution do you game at?

You could get a cheap laptop for around $600. Why spend $400 for a 10" netbook when you can spend a bit more and get a dual core, bigger screen, DVD drive, more RAM, and the potential to play some games like MapleStory, Gunbound, etc. After that, just save up the rest of your money and have fun with your friends in University.
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Old June 26, 2009, 05:23 AM
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400w psu is NOT enough to run a GTX 260/GTX 275... Im sure you COULD mod it but powering it is going to another issue, not to mention the amount of cooling those cards need in such a limited space.

As for netbooks, gf just got a MSI wind, she doesnt mind it but the LG netbook is also very nice. Just make sure you grab a 6 cell at minimum to max your battery life.

Quote:
Why spend $400 for a 10" netbook when you can spend a bit more and get a dual core, bigger screen, DVD drive, more RAM, and the potential to play some games like MapleStory, Gunbound, etc. After that, just save up the rest of your money and have fun with your friends in University.
Battery life, battery life, battery life. When you could have the choice between 3 hours max or a potential 8 hours, 12 if you get the 9cell wind, as a student what would you choose? Besides that the Netbooks are light as hell and those little atoms can still put out some decent performance. Also good to note, quite a few older games will run on the winds, including UT99 =) if your into that that is. NCIX is giving away external DVD writers with their netbooks this week, just a heads up.

DAMN that is a wicked deal on that gateway, great little lappy for under $1000. Runs 7200RPM drives and has room for a 2nd and 4gb of DDR3, 9lbs is NOTHING compared to some of the gaming laptops ive seen, the new Alienware is 11.5lbs starting... But damn it runs dual GTX 280ms *drool*
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Old June 26, 2009, 09:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Realityshift View Post
Battery life, battery life, battery life. When you could have the choice between 3 hours max or a potential 8 hours, 12 if you get the 9cell wind, as a student what would you choose? Besides that the Netbooks are light as hell and those little atoms can still put out some decent performance. Also good to note, quite a few older games will run on the winds, including UT99 =) if your into that that is. NCIX is giving away external DVD writers with their netbooks this week, just a heads up.

DAMN that is a wicked deal on that gateway, great little lappy for under $1000. Runs 7200RPM drives and has room for a 2nd and 4gb of DDR3, 9lbs is NOTHING compared to some of the gaming laptops ive seen, the new Alienware is 11.5lbs starting... But damn it runs dual GTX 280ms *drool*
High school student here. I'll choose the laptop over netbook. I don't mind bringing the charger to school. I do it all the time. I just carry my school bag, then bring my laptop with the freaken-heavy Targus bag.

Oh during my trip to NYC, I had a bunch of TVB dramas and movies loaded into my Acer Aspire 5601. I turned everything off, Wireless, Ethernet, closed as much standby application as I can, brightness turned down to lowest setting. I believe the battery lasted me a good 4 to 5 hours.
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Old June 26, 2009, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Realityshift View Post
400w psu is NOT enough to run a GTX 260/GTX 275...
I ran a 65 nm E2160 @ 1.5 volts with a 65 nm GTX 260 core 192 on a Corsair VX 450 watt no problem. According the the voltmeter thing at the plug my rig + screen were pulling about 430 watts combined under load. If he ran a 45 nm CPU with a modest OC and a 55 nm GPU he should be down around ~350. Of course that Athena PSU could be crap compared to the VX 450

That being said though, I would not go for a m-itx build. Like you said - vertical space isn't to hard to find. Use your current case and HDD to build a C2Q setup with a GTX 275 or 4890

Last edited by SneakySnake; June 26, 2009 at 09:47 AM.
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Old June 26, 2009, 10:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SneakySnake View Post
I ran a 65 nm E2160 @ 1.5 volts with a 65 nm GTX 260 core 192 on a Corsair VX 450 watt no problem. According the the voltmeter thing at the plug my rig + screen were pulling about 430 watts combined under load. If he ran a 45 nm CPU with a modest OC and a 55 nm GPU he should be down around ~350. Of course that Athena PSU could be crap compared to the VX 450
This.

But the athena power PSU's are pretty garbage from what I've read. Your max gfx for m-itx would probably be close to 9800gtx/gts250 if you bought the ULTRA X4 400w micro atx PSU. It seems like your best bet for a small rig.

My personal suggestion is just to suck it up, and bring your desktop to university, you will find room for it I promise you. Don't sell your already very respectable components because you wont get very much for them, and it would end up costing you more than you would like. But I would upgrade the graphics card to something like a 4870 512mb.

P.S. (I have one for sale Cowboy's FS thread!)

P.S.S. I hope your not going to U of T for mech eng and planning on having time for gaming :) I would know, I'm a 1st year chem and it is impossible to have any kind of life beyond your books... See you @ frosh week lol.
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