xsistor

Posts Tagged ‘Full HD’

Buying a PC with The Coolness Factor: How would you spend £1599 (or $2628)?

In Computer Hardware, Electronics, Gaming, Overclocking & Tweaking on July 25, 2009 at 1:14 am

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The Story: How the Xsistor® CoolRig™ 1000 was Born

I know I promised to do an ultra low-cost system build with my next one, but this one’s popped up and I just have to do it, and now.

My ex-girlfriend got her  second year electrical engineering results today. She had some really brilliant grades — first class honours. Naturally she was thrilled, except her Intel ex-work buddy was in a particularly gloaty mood and was on about this awesome new system he was getting. Standing in stark contrast to her own aging Toshiba  laptop stood the The HP TouchSmart IQ820, a truly mean piece of hardware. Not something her positively miserly, aging relic of a contraption could compete with. While she was elated at her grades she lamented that she would not be getting something better until she was done with university.

HP TouchSmart IQ820 Desktop PC

HP TouchSmart IQ820 Desktop PC - Click her to view the product page

She sent me the link asking what I thought of it… Not much.

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Building a Low Cost Enthusiast Desktop PC System For Under £550

In Computer Hardware, Electronics, Gaming, Overclocking & Tweaking on July 23, 2009 at 3:57 am

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Requirements

Let’s take a look at how we’d ‘spec’ a system designed to meet the needs of enthusiasts while also keeping costs low:

1) Decent performance in processor-intensive tasks such as video editing/encoding/decoding and other hyperthreaded software

2) Gaming performance at moderate resolutions such as 1680×1050

3) Potential for overclocking

4) Upgradability

The Budget

We want this to be a mid-range system of sorts. I plan to do a really low-cost budget performance/gaming rig for something like £350-£400 soon, but for this system let’s choose more of a mid-range budget. Something in the region of £500-£600 should be fine, so let’s settle on £550, give or take. The average laptop is atleast £500-£600 and we want a system that far outstrips even a high-end laptop in performance.

Guru3D.com showing the use of AMD's Overdrive utility for easy overclocking

Guru3D.com showing the use of AMD's Overdrive utility for easy overclocking

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Building a Custom Cutting Edge PC System for Under £900 or $1250

In Computer Hardware, Electronics, Gaming, Overclocking & Tweaking on July 20, 2009 at 2:14 am

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Requirements

I’ve been asked by a few friends to lay out the specification for a high-end future-proof PC on a reasonable budget. So let’s kick this article off by broadly specifying our goals. To sum it up: We want a PC that does everything, does it well, and doesn’t cost crazy amounts of money!

These goals can only be met by a very high-end rig:

1.) Play HD movies in Blu-ray format on a HDTV or HD LCD Monitor at ‘Full HD’ (1920×1080 resolution)

2.) Handle all the latest games at high resolutions (1680×1050, 1920×1200 and 2048×1152)

3.) Handle video editing, encoding, decoding tasks efficiently

4.) 2D Graphics/Art/texturing – Adobe Photoshop CS4 and related tools should run ‘fast’

5.) Support for 3D modelling using software such as Maya, 3D studio max, and real-time rendering in games development work

6.) Science Simulation/Engineering CAD: should run Solidworks, Matlab, AutoCAD, and other engineering software efficiently

7.) Stanford Research Institute – Folding@Home. Lots of people are getting into the craze, potentially helping fight disease by ‘lending’ computer-time on their systems. The designed system should have these capabilities

8.) Future-proofing/Upgradability- There is really no such thing as future-proofing when it comes to technology. The evolution of technology is not a straight-line deal. Instead, the industry loves to keep taking right-angle turns every year or two just so they can throw customers off trail. But let’s see what we can do. NVidia’s Geforce GT300 and ATi’s Radeon HD 5000 series of 40nm and 32nm graphics cards are coming out soon. We’d like the system to be able to handle these. The system should have options for dual or triple GPU support in the form of SLI or Crossfire. Use of newer, rather than an older platform is recommended.

9.) Overclocking and tweaking – the system should provide headroom for enthusiasts

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