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    Advice for a New Computer redux

    Hello,

    Three years ago, I put out the following call on this same forum for suggestions with getting a new computer, but decided to keep my Dell Dimension 4600, because I had other pressing issues. Finally, I am ready to get a new computer. So, again, I ask the question what type of computer would you recommend for me to be able to MSTS at a high performance. I also raise this question again because I know the reccomendations from three years might be a tad outdated with the evolving computer technology.

    My family and I have yet to agree on a price range but I guess it would be in the moderate range such as around $600 to $750. Coupled with my question is the issue of a graphics card and a motherboard to run Direct 10 graphics. I will mainly use the new computer for running MSTS and also word processing. Generally, I have been very impressed with my Dell computer over the years.

    Thank you for your help.

    Sincerely,
    Walter Conklin
    Last edited by Guest; 03-03-2010, 03:36 PM.

    #2
    Here is a price quote someone gave me for building a new computer for me. Please note this estimate was before I told him that I would like a computer around $750. I already own a 22-Inch 226BW Samsung Monitor and will also recycle the keyboard and mouse. The person said he could give me a quote within range of what I want.
    Attached Files

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      #3
      Hi Walter,
      Here are two sample configurations that get close to your specs. You might be able to save few dollars if you only need one bay for a DVD/CD, the samples shown have both a read drive and a writable one but if you don't mind swapping out discs, you could make do with one (I would suggest two drives, it just makes life so much more simple!!). Note this would work fine for MSTS and word processing. If you run FSX, this may not be powerful enough to really exploit that program. It will not be adequate for the latest high demand gaming software, but I doubt you run that? Nothing in your price range would do that justice.
      The configurator I used was on AVA direct. If you wanted to spec each item and order from NewEgg, you could save a bit more, if you have a person to build it for you. Some suggestions, 1) Don't skimp on the power supply. It isn't only the power rating that is significant, you want a stable and clean output that protects your downstream components. There are only a few brands that I would consider in this component. Beware the cheap noname Power Supplies as well as some of the lower quality name brands. 2) I do NOT recommend MSI motherboards. You may have a different experience than I have, but I have had trouble with them more than any other brand. 3) Note I put a combo card reader in one configuration. If you don't have a digital camera to download this way, or data to swap with a laptop, you may not have use for that and a simple floppy will work fine. 4) I used XP in this configuration. Unless your word processor demands Vista or newer, you can save yourself some headaches running MSTS with XP. Windows 7 will run MSTS fine, but you have to know how to set it up and where to place the program on install, the default placement of Windows 7 64 will give you problems unless you reset the permissions correctly and do some other tweaks.
      Let me know if you have any questions.
      Attached Files
      Last edited by plainsman; 03-06-2010, 11:39 PM.
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        #4
        MSTS using the computer's CPU to do all it's graphics numbers crunching, a fast CPU is what is best to make it perform better and a Core-Duo one will do, there are many reasonably priced versions of, mainly from ATI.

        Also helping are graphics cards which support OPENGL, I think is what the MSTS DX-7 graphics API is using ?

        O t t o
        Web site: www.otto-wipfel.co.uk

        Comment


          #5
          Hi Otto,

          MSTS uses Direct3D.

          Direct X is a suite of API's that include Direct3D.


          Derek

          Comment


            #6
            Hi Derek !

            Must have got confused regarding OPENGL and MSTS, having talked about settings in graphics cards drivers back in 2005 !



            O t t o
            Web site: www.otto-wipfel.co.uk

            Comment


              #7
              When I build a computer, I figure out the BEST motherboard and Processor I can buy. Then I look at what I already have that will work. DVD, memory, mouse, keyboard, RAM, sound card, video card, case, hard drive(s) etc.

              Then I upgrade in the following order: RAM first, then Video card, then Sound card. It's easy to replace a video card a few months down the road when either you have the money or the "latest and the greatest" comes down to a better price.

              Start with 2 gigs of RAM, MB, Processor (If I had my wish right now: Intel I-7 Quad), and then figure out what you have left and if you can reuse any parts "for now."

              Think about it, and you can build a MUCH better computer on the "installment" plan.

              Robert
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                #8
                a fast CPU is what is best to make it perform better
                True, but not all "speed" is relevant as to MSTS. Extra cores or even advanced architecture such as i5/i7 won't help MSTS. An Intel E7600 with even an old Nvidia 7800 will peg MSTS at 60 fps on most routes.
                sigpic

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                  #9
                  From what I've noticed, this configuration (or something similar) should be best for MSTS:

                  • Intel Core 2 Duo E8600, Core i7 860, or Core i7 920
                  • 4-6 GB DDR3 1333 MHz memory
                  • Motherboard and hard drive that support the new SATA-3 (6.0 Gbps speed) to reduce stutter when loading new objects
                  • 300 GB VelociRaptor 10,000 RPM hard drive (or 15,000 RPM or a SSD)
                  • ATI Radeon HD 5670 (requires no additional power connector, and the HD 5000 series has better image quality than HD 4000 or nVidia 200 series)
                  • Large (120 mm or larger) quiet fans that move a lot of air to prevent even the slightest overheating
                  • A monitor able to run MSTS at 1280 x 1024 or 1600 x 1200 without stretching it across the entire widescreen. 1920 x 1200 would be an optimal widescreen display, IMO.
                  • Windows 7 64 bit Home Premium or Ultimate

                  That would just be my desired setup to run MSTS at its full DirectX 7 beauty (even though we're on DirectX 11 now...).
                  Last edited by saintjimmy14; 03-12-2010, 02:09 AM.
                  Kyle's the name, trains are the game. Core i5-12600K, 16 GB DDR4-3600, 8 TB SSD storage, RTX 3070, Windows 10 Pro.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Hi Kyle,

                    Just to dispel any misconceptions:-

                    >hard drive that support the new SATA-3 (6.0 Gbps speed) to reduce stutter when loading new objects

                    The 6.0Gbps is the interface speed ONLY, the disks are still the same speed.
                    So it will have no effect on stuttering.

                    Derek

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