CPU Prices

RAM Prices

Compare Prices

Sharky Extreme : Monthly Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide October 2, 2008

Be a Marketplace Partner

 Advertising Info

About the Double-Underlined Links

 - Most Active Threads
 - Technical Support
 - CPUs & Overclocking

Latest News

- AMD Rolls Out the ATI Radeon HD 4350 and HD 4550 Graphics Cards
- Acer Releases New High-Performance Aspire Notebooks
- OCZ Launches the HydroFlow HF-MK1 CPU Waterblock
- Dell Launches its Studio Desktop and Studio Slim Desktop Series
- Lenovo Delivers Two New ThinkPad X Notebooks
News Archives


- SharkyExtreme.com: Interview with Microsoft's Dan Odell
- SharkyExtreme.com: Interview with ATI's Terry Makedon
- SharkyExtreme.com: Interview with Seagate's Joni Clark
- Half-Life 2 Review
- DOOM 3 Review

Buyer's Guides

- September Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide
- July High-end Gaming PC Buyer's Guide
- May Value Gaming PC Buyer's Guide


  • CPUs

  • Motherboards

    - AMD 790GX Chipset Review
    - Gigabyte GA-MA790FX-DS5 Motherboard Review
    - AMD 780G Chipset Review

  • Video Cards

    Be a Commerce Partner

    Internet News
    Small Business
    Personal Technology

    Search internet.com
    Corporate Info
    Tech Jobs
    E-mail Offers


    July Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide
    By Thomas Soderstrom :  July 31, 2007

    Networking: Integrated Dual Gigabit

    Current Cost: $0
    Consecutive Guides: 11
    Price Change: N/A

    Both of our recommended motherboards include excellent Dual Gigabit Networking support, making discrete controllers a waste of money and space for most buyers. But those who need more ports might consider an Intel PRO/1000 PT Server Adapter. Intel's long and glorious history in network controllers has all but displaced competitors at this market level, and the PRO/1000 PT is available in single, dual, and quad port designs.

    The single port card uses a PCI-Express x1 slot for better flexibility in placement, while multiport cards use an x4 slot. The newer slot standard was chosen because legacy 32-bit PCI can only support gigabit transfers in one direction at a time, while each PCI-Express lane is both twice as fast in each direction and bi-directional. Anyone who can't spare a PCI-Express slot can substitute a 64-bit PCI PRO/1000 MT in 32-bit mode, since these are cross-compatible, but with an obvious loss in performance.

    Operating System: Windows XP Professional SP2 OEM

    Current Cost: $139
    Consecutive Guides: 18
    Price Change: $0

    It's hard to believe that all these months have passed and Windows Vista still suffers from several unresolved driver issues and program conflicts. Windows XP has completely matured and is supported by nearly everything, plus it offers better performance in many games, doesn't suffer the SLI performance oddities of Vista, and requires less system memory to run properly.

    Microsoft is facing a tremendous struggle to get buyers to adopt Vista, as market resistance has worked its way to several major OEM builders. Large manufacturers like Dell and HP even display "available with XP" logos on many of their PCs and laptops. It's still a tough call, as Vista is the future, but especially for a SLI gaming system, the future is not quite here yet. The good news for XP users is that current CD's have several additional updates wrapped in.

    UPS: OPTI-UPS Enhanced Series ES1000C

    Current Cost: $110
    Consecutive Guides: 2
    Price Change: $0

    A UPS can be cheap insurance against both power surges (spikes) and brownouts (droops), and even prevent data loss in the event of a complete power failure. The value of this security should never be underestimated for any system, but increases with the cost of internal hardware.

    Rated at 1000VA with an exceptional 700W load capacity, the OPTI-UPS Enhanced Series 1000C was previously chosen to support upgrades to SLI graphics and quad core processing, and for this guide we've gotten as far as the two graphics cards. Its moderate price is unchanged and sets it apart from other 700W-rated units, while enough user feedback exists to assure us of the quality in our selection.

    OPTI-UPS goes a step beyond similarly priced competitors in both wattage and disclosure. A "typical runtime load" of 45-55 minutes sounds similar to what competing products site, but OPTI also provides the actual runtime capabilities most others won't mention. Specifically, this unit is rated at 3 minutes full load capacity (700W) and ten minutes half-load capacity. The load time numbers may look small compared to the estimated run time, but one must wonder what competitors are tying to hide by not publishing their load times.

    Our configurations are expected to "pull" around 500W of actual power during full bore gaming, so users powering both the system and the LCD display should have at least three minutes to save their game and power down if ever their local power grid does go offline. Running less strenuous tasks whenever the grid goes down could bring your "typical runtime" in line with the company's estimates.

    Page 1 Introduction and Case
    Page 2 Processors and Cooling
    Page 3 Motherboards and Memory
    Page 4 Hard Drives and DVD-R/RW
    Page 5 Video Card, LCD Display and Audio
    Page 6 Mouse, Keyboard & Controller
  • Page 7 Communications, Operating System, etc.
    Page 8 Price Roundup and Closing Remarks

    Copyright(c) 2008 Jupitermedia Corporation. All Rights Reserved. Legal Notices | Licensing , Reprints , & Permissions | Privacy Policy




    Jupitermedia Corporation has two divisions: Jupiterimages and JupiterOnlineMedia

    Jupitermedia Corporate Info

    Legal Notices, Licensing, Reprints, & Permissions, Privacy Policy.

    Advertise | Newsletters | Tech Jobs | Shopping | E-mail Offers

    Whitepapers and eBooks
    IBM Whitepaper: Innovative Collaboration to Advance Your Business
    Internet.com eBook: Real Life Rails
    Avaya Article: Call Control XML - Powerful, Standards-Based Call Control
    Internet.com eBook: The Pros and Cons of Outsourcing
    Go Parallel Article: Scalable Parallelism with Intel(R) Threading Building Blocks
    Internet.com eBook: Best Practices for Developing a Web Site
    IBM CXO Whitepaper: The 2008 Global CEO Study "The Enterprise of the Future"
    Avaya Article: Call Control XML in Action - A CCXML Auto Attendant
    Go Parallel Article: James Reinders on the Intel Parallel Studio Beta Program
    IBM CXO Whitepaper: Unlocking the DNA of the Adaptable Workforce--The Global Human Capital Study 2008
    Adobe Acrobat Connect Pro: Web Conferencing and eLearning Whitepapers
    Go Parallel Article: Getting Started with TBB on Windows
    HP eBook: Storage Networking , Part 1
    Go Parallel Video: Intel(R) Threading Building Blocks: A New Method for Threading in C++
    HP Video: Is Your Data Center Ready for a Real World Disaster?
    Microsoft Partner Portal Video: Microsoft Gold Certified Partners Build Successful Practices
    HP On Demand Webcast: Virtualization in Action
    Go Parallel Video: Performance and Threading Tools for Game Developers
    Rackspace Hosting Center: Customer Videos
    Intel vPro Developer Virtual Bootcamp
    HP Disaster-Proof Solutions eSeminar
    HP On Demand Webcast: Discover the Benefits of Virtualization
    Downloads and eKits
    Microsoft Download: Silverlight 2 Software Development Kit Beta 2
    30-Day Trial: SPAMfighter Exchange Module
    Red Gate Download: SQL Toolbelt
    Iron Speed Designer Application Generator
    Microsoft Download: Silverlight 2 Beta 2 Runtime
    Tutorials and Demos
    IBM IT Innovation Article: Green Servers Provide a Competitive Advantage
    Microsoft Article: Expression Web 2 for PHP Developers--Simplify Your PHP Applications
    Featured Algorithm: Intel Threading Building Blocks - parallel_reduce