Author Topic: New Computer for FS2  (Read 2036 times)

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Offline Nehemiah

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So, I've had this laptop for over 5 years now, and I've really enjoyed it.  I've done everything I could to get all the life I could get from it.  I upgraded the RAM from 512 MB to 2 GB and I've kept current with the graphics driver upgrades for my ATI Radeon Xpress 200 integrated graphics card (I couldn't replace it without replacing the computer). 

That brings me to my point.  Freespace 2 is the greatest game ever invented.  With all of you outstanding modders out there, it has held my attention far longer than any game other game ever has.  However, with the recent advent of the 3.6.12 Media VPs, as well as mods that have gratuitous amounts of projectiles flying through the air (e.g. BPII: WiH), my computer can no longer keep up.  Even using the 3.6.12 Media VPs on the main FS2 Campaign causes the textures to glitch and become static boxes on any detail level other than the lowest.  This says a lot for all that you've done to make this game one that should continue being played well into the next decade, but my computer cannot handle your brilliance.

I'm in the market for a laptop under $600 that can handle this game on maximum detail level without bogging down.  Is this doable?  I'd like your input on what specs my new comp would need to run FSO smoothly in all its glory.  It's the only PC game I play.
The Babylon Project was our last, best hope for peace.  It failed...

No no!  I love the mod!  That's just what Commander Ivanova says at the beginning of B5 season 3.

 

Offline Angelus

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i suggest a desktop for $600, chances are, it'll be much faster then a Notebook for the same money.
Unless you need a Notebook.
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Offline General Battuta

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Agreed. Go desktop if at all possible. I went laptop and went back and it was a tremendous boon to both sanity and performance.

 

Offline headdie

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Its always been the case that laptops/netbooks etc are best for if you need to be mobile but if you are after gaming performance a desktop will be better and until power usage/storage and heat management are sorted that will be the case
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Offline Herra Tohtori

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Unless you need a Notebook.


...In which case you can just, you know, keep using your old laptop for that purpose, and do the gaming and other heavier stuff on the desktop.

I third the recommendation to get a desktop. They offer more bang for buck, are more upgradeable, stay cooler and have enough room for fans big enough that they don't have to sound like power tools for moving any significant volumes of air. Oh and they're easier to fix if something goes wrong, unlike laptops whose life time is basically how long the power chord connector and the display survive intact.
There are three things that last forever: Abort, Retry, Fail - and the greatest of these is Fail.

 

Offline Nehemiah

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The thing is, when my wife and I move to our new apartment, we were not going to get any internet service, so we were going to use the internet at a hotspot in order to save money, and just check our e-mails that way.  Can't lug around a desktop like that. :(

It's amazing this thing still runs after 5 years...

So far, based on your recommendation, of the desktops I'm looking at, I'm finding less computing power for the same price.  AND...they don't come with a monitor.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2010, 05:07:10 pm by Nehemiah »
The Babylon Project was our last, best hope for peace.  It failed...

No no!  I love the mod!  That's just what Commander Ivanova says at the beginning of B5 season 3.

 

Offline General Battuta

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You'll always get more bang for your buck with a desktop, especially if you build it yourself. But if you don't want to haul it around, desktop is the way to go. Check out Tom's Hardware for reviews?

 

Offline Klaustrophobia

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i custom-built mine for $600 about 2.5 years ago, although this includes tower only.  it can certainly be done for cheaper for the majority of FSO, but WIH is JUUUUUUSSST hitting the edge of my system.  like Herra said, you can get a desktop for gaming/workstation, and keep your current laptop for the internet runs.
I like to stare at the sun.

 

Offline General Battuta

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WiH is hitting the edge of your system because its models are badly optimized. Terrible benchmark!

newayana moving along though

 

Offline Scotty

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What about a Newruna?

 

Offline Mongoose

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Before you run out and buy new hardware immediately, you're not trying to run with MV_Advanced, are you?  If you are, try removing that and seeing if the corruption issues go away.  It worked for me on my old crappy card, and it might be a good stopgap.

 

Offline Klaustrophobia

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WiH is hitting the edge of your system because its models are badly optimized. Terrible benchmark!

newayana moving along though

i'm aware of that, but he would have the same problem until that situation is remedied.  i should have mentioned that mine plays crysis quite well on high settings, so it has plenty of power, but FSO seems to be the concern here and he specifically mentioned WIH.

in any event, the stuff available now for the same price points should be considerably stronger.  if you'd like help in setting up a desktop, let me know.
I like to stare at the sun.

 

Offline JGZinv

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I would suggest looking into the Asus line of gaming laptops that Best Buy has carried.
Either current or previous models, going back as far as the G50vt-X5.

I'm not a big fan of Best Buy, but they have a deal in place with Asus, so they offer the
lowest prices on new units. That being said, with that price range, you're probably looking for
a good used unit.  Check out notebookreview.com's Asus forums for opinions, reviews, and help on them.
There's also a buy/sell/trade section that often has a Asus unit (folks tend to buy the latest thing like clockwork
around there.)

My G50vt-X5 has been able to do maxed out at about 30/34fps with FS2 ran in a window at a lower resolution,
but it's also pushing 3-4 years old hardware too. There's more hearty spec'd units out there and they should
be in the $600 range now.


A new Asus gaming unit, is going to run you $1100 basically after sales tax. But in general they are really
good systems for the cost. To get more raw power, you're looking at going up to a Sager/Clevo and the barebones
systems don't go for less than $1000... and can go into the $8000+ range.
True power comes not from strength, but from the soul and imagination.
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Offline newman

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Laptops always (and I found no exception to this rule) offer less performance per $ ratio than a desktop. Even if it seems otherwise to you on paper, those mobile CPUs and graphic cards will often run slower than supposedly older and inferior desktop models. I just don't see how you can get a gaming grade laptop for 600$ - that's pretty much the lower end of the price spectrum and will get you one intended for text processing and email.
I second the suggestions others gave you here to build a desktop and keep the laptop for internet stuff. In case you're lucky enough and your flat is in range of a hotspot, you can always get a wi-fi adapter for a desktop system..
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Offline Mongoose

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It won't exactly be "gaming grade," but you could probably get a laptop that can handle most modern-ish games decently for somewhere around $600.  Entry-level systems today have far more comparative power than they did a few years ago.

 

Offline newman

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It won't exactly be "gaming grade," but you could probably get a laptop that can handle most modern-ish games decently for somewhere around $600.  Entry-level systems today have far more comparative power than they did a few years ago.

In that price range I tend to find only laptops that have an integrated graphics chip on the motherboard. Those really aren't suitable for gaming.
You know what the chain of command is? It's the chain I go get and beat you with 'til ya understand who's in ruttin' command here! - Jayne Cobb

 

Offline JGZinv

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Please read my post above before telling people that's all they can get.
Granted it was used, but I got a excellent condition G50VT-X5 for a bit over $400.
That was a year ago.
True power comes not from strength, but from the soul and imagination.
Max to PCS2 to FS2 SCP Guide
The FringeSpace Conversion Mod

 

Offline Mongoose

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It won't exactly be "gaming grade," but you could probably get a laptop that can handle most modern-ish games decently for somewhere around $600.  Entry-level systems today have far more comparative power than they did a few years ago.

In that price range I tend to find only laptops that have an integrated graphics chip on the motherboard. Those really aren't suitable for gaming.
Really?  The Dell laptop I put together for my brother for college this year did have an integrated chip (he's not really a gamer), but it also had 4 GB of RAM and a Core 2 Duo processor, and the whole thing came to around $400.  The option to add in a legitimate video card definitely wouldn't have put it over $600.

  

Offline newman

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Maybe it's a local thing, but yes it would have definitely put it over 600$ over here. As you know, you can't just plug in a vid card in a laptop, you need to buy a pre-assembled model that already has a decent card. And over here, those all cost way more than 600$.
And JGZinv, used systems are, of course, an entirely different story. I can't recommend getting a used one to someone who's not very knowledgeable in laptops in the first place, in which case that person wouldn't need my recommendations anyway. Laptops tend to have shorter lifespans (in general) than desktops, and you have no idea what the person you're buying it from put it through. Sure it may be a great deal, and then again it may not. In addition, anyone who's not very tech savvy can benefit greatly from having the thing under warranty, and having tech support he can fall back on.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2010, 01:29:25 pm by newman »
You know what the chain of command is? It's the chain I go get and beat you with 'til ya understand who's in ruttin' command here! - Jayne Cobb