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Configuration Review

Post Date: 2021-06-10

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Jimmin View Drop Down
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  Quote Jimmin Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Topic: Configuration Review
    Posted: 10 Jun 2021 at 12:25pm
I need advice on configuration.  In particular whether I am missing any components, underpowering, etc.

Rather than having a budget, I want a build that is future-proof - meaning it will still be viable 6-8 years from now.

I will be running a dual monitor setup and I will be two-thirds of the time doing graphics-intensive gaming, one-third of the time on basic productivity.

As for special needs the only one I can think of is noise.  If I had to, I would trade-off some level of performance for a quieter build.   

Thank you
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  Quote Snaike Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 10 Jun 2021 at 2:51pm
The Smart GuysĀ® will be along shortly. I think they'll need a little more to go on than just "future proofing", "intensive gaming" and "basic productivity".

First and foremost you're going to need to set a specific budget range as there are configurations of DS machines that will reach well over $20,000. Resolutions of monitors is also important. Are you running multiple 1080p monitors, 2K, 4K? There is a huge difference in capabilities without knowing these specifics.

Work with the config gurus and have them give you the best machine for your unique needs.

Good luck and happy gaming!
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  Quote Cretae Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 11 Jun 2021 at 4:32am
Future-proofing is a myth. I see so many requests for this here, and I wonder where the concept ever came from. Tech advances are constantly moving forward. Digital Storm builds on the cutting edge as much as possible, but there is no way any 6 year old computer can compete with a much less expensive set-up today.

What's true is you can stretch the performance of a DS computer a very long way. For gaming, the industry has surpassed by a significant margin the CPU power needed for good gaming performance at this point in time, so a strong CPU will perform adequately for longer these days. GPU power is another thing. It improves vastly every 1.5-2 years. This gen was supposed to provide superior results at much lower price points. Lack of supply from the globally broken supply chain wrecked that, but the performance is there.

Today's THIRD TIER RTX 3070 is spitting distance from the performance of last gen's super card, the 2080 Ti, and the 2nd tier RTX 3080 is faster by up to 20%. How "futureproof" was that $1400 card? At originally planned MSRP, the 3080 was to go $700, and the 3070, $500.

About a little more than a year and a half ago, PCIe Generation 3 gave way to PCIe Gen 4. DOUBLE the speed of Gen 3. Intel wasn't ready, and they were still selling Gen 3 procs and motherboards up to April. AMD offered Gen 4 parts well over a year ago. How futureproof were those Intel system just 3 months ago?

Having ranted, it is true that IF the parts hold up, and certainly there is no assurance of that, a 6-8 year old PC can be useable, but define "viable". Without upgrading, able to play AAA games in 6 years? Barely. Maybe. What's certain is the more you spend now, the more you waste.

IMHO, the strategy that will always work is buy what you NEED for now with the budget and flexibility to upgrade when new breakthroughs make it a really good idea. If you over-invest now for the elusive future-proofing, I guarantee you obsolescence inside three years, and you've wasted a lot of money. PCIe Gen 5 is coming. NVMe SSDs get faster and cheaper all the time. Prices will normalize within a year or so, and everything you buy today will be cheaper, and probably better.

More specifically, at these prices, it is essential to purchase what you need for your monitors, and not reach out "into the future". Cards are going for more than double, and that makes futureproofing with a new gen only a year away really ineffective.

So, monitor resolution please. Depending on that, we can give you a pretty killer machine at a medium price that will be UPGRADEABLE for several years without having to replace mobo, PSU and perhaps even CPU. A lot of PC parts can last and last, but it's a lottery. Sometimes they do, sometimes not.

Hope it helps.
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  Quote Jimmin Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 11 Jun 2021 at 12:14pm
Thank you, I appreciate it!
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  Quote Jimmin Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 11 Jun 2021 at 12:16pm
That "thank you" was to the previous poster.  I'll write more later about the more recent post
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  Quote Jimmin Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 11 Jun 2021 at 12:50pm
Cretae, thank you for your note. I think you rightfully point out an alternative to the future-proofing I had in mind.  Rather than buy considerably more than I need in the short-term (especially given what's going on the graphics card market) it's smarter to buy for what I need for the next 1-2 years and make sure the key components are upgradeable.

I want to make sure I can play AAA games now and into the future so that's a consideration for config.  Monitor resolution (and size) - great questions.  4K seems like more than I will need. I'm thinking 27" QHD, at least 120hz, and short response time.

Given what I've described, what do you think a medium-priced, upgradeable configuration would be?

Thank you!
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  Quote Cretae Quote  Post ReplyReply bullet Posted: 12 Jun 2021 at 4:16am
Sure. Try this on...

   3939480    $3038

Top gaming CPU out now will probably last you that 5-6 years, maybe more. CPUs are so fast and powerful right now that gaming is a cinch for them to handle. This proc has only been out 2 1/2 months, so it's cutting edge. No need to overclock it, it turbos to 5.3 GHz whenever called upon, and it's not so good to have it running above stock at all times just for games.

Solid mobo. 16GB of RAM could go to 32, but it's not needed for gaming at present. It's easy to expand RAM when the need arises later.

850 W PSU will allows for all kinds of add-ons in the future, including top GPUs.

500GB NVMe SSD allows for "lean and mean" super fast primary drive for Win, apps, maintenance software, and a few favorite games. If you want to go bigger, be sure to partition a larger drive when it comes. Windows has a Wizard. I'd allow about 200 GB for Win, apps and maintenance scanners so you don't have to wipe the whole drive if you have to re-install Windows. Scans perform much faster, too. The 980 PRO is a little faster, but you'd never tell the difference. The 1TB 980 PRO is actually a bit cheaper than the 1TB Firecuda, though.

The Secondary spot should go to another SSD IMHO, but the 2TB I'd like to suggest is on backorder. You could save here and just get the SATA 860 EVO. It's plenty fast enough for a games library. The larger drives are a bit pricy. It's also very easy to add more storage later. An SSD can usually mount on the back of the mobo with easy access to the pre-wiring for power and SATA hook-up. If you wanted to purchase your own M.2 NVMe SSD, it slips into a slot right on the mobo, fastens down with one screw, and has no wires to hook up.

The RTX 3070 is THE pick for 1440p. Just a few months ago, the 2080 Ti was considered extreme overkill at 1440p, and the 3070 can almost match that card. Will it max out 144fps on every game at Ultra? No, but 100fps on Ultra or High is in reach on most titles.

How much bling you want is up to you. With glass on all sides, RGB fans look nice in the Lumos. If you want to get that less costly, the Lynx case is $116 less and comes with RGB fans standard.

Choices, choices, I know. But you'll be surprised how long this base system will go.     
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