Cheapest PC with X-Box 360 level graphics?

Discussion in 'Computer Hardware, Devices and Accessories' started by IBNobody, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. IBNobody
    OP

    IBNobody I try to keep myself amused.

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    I'm looking for a second PC for a family member so that we can play some multi-player games on Steam. (The games can run with settings shut off and at 1280x1024 if needed.)

    I can get a refurbished Dell with a Core 2 Duo 2.8Ghz and 4GB for ~$330, but adding a moderately-better-than-an-X-Box 360 graphics card (which would have to be new) bumps it up to $500ish. That's too much to pay for a second-hand PC.

    I'm not looking to sink too much money in this project since the spare PC will be idle or used for web browsing most of the time.

    Any suggestions?
     


  2. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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    You want better than a Radeon X1800? Easy. Get any graphics card made in the last 2 years.
     
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  3. IBNobody
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    IBNobody I try to keep myself amused.

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    That's the problem though. It's cost. Even the GTS 250, a card that's going on 4 years, costs $100.

    EDIT: What I'm looking for is an all-in-one solution that is cheap and easy to maintain. I don't want to scrounge for individual used parts.
     
  4. Arm73

    Arm73 GBAtemp Addict

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    Well you have to consider that even if you get a PC with a graphic card comparable or marginal better then the Xbox360's , it doesn't mean that you'll get similar or better graphics on the PC.
    There are many more system specs to account for, like cpu processing power and speed, memory, HDD speed and lastly,most importantly , you have to think that games are often badly ported from consoles, and often times they struggle to run smoothly at medium setting even on moderately powerful PCs !
    So really, do yourself a favor and spend a couple of hundred bucks extra, you'll get a much better performance and you'll be glad you did it !
     
  5. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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    Sub $100 graphics generally mean GT440 or the like. For new systems, I generally recommend GTX560 and above.

    With a good graphics card, it wont matter as much if the CPU is weak or the motherboard cheap.
    Edit: now that I'm sober again, I remembered that you can get an average CPU and GPU all rolled into one. AMD A6 and A8 APUs are perfect for your needs.
     
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  6. Tom Bombadildo

    Tom Bombadildo Honk!

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    Shit, I'll sell you my old GT440 for $50 if you want. I was able to play recent games with medium-high settings with it.
     
  7. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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  8. Thanatos Telos

    Thanatos Telos random stuff

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  9. Quietlyawesome94

    Quietlyawesome94 GBAtemp Maniac

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    Friend of mine built his own PC buying cheap parts at Microcenter.

    He's able to run stuff like Dirt 3 at the resolution you mentioned on high settings.... Cost him $225.47.



    System Setup:
    8GB DDR3-1333
    2GB Nvidia GeForce GT 430
    2.8GHz Phenom II x4 (830)
     
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  10. Lanlan

    Lanlan GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    APUs are the way to go. Get a cheap FM1 mobo, some RAM, and an A8 and you're looking at about $200
     
  11. IBNobody
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    IBNobody I try to keep myself amused.

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    I'll see what I can throw together in the APU department.

    I'd rather not build a spare rig, though. That leads to questions of expenditure from the wife. I've got to save that until after the next-gen consoles are released and I'm updating my main PC.

    It's easier to just buy a refurb Dell and retrofit a graphics card in it. I'm just looking for a better option on what refurb to get.
     
  12. Rydian

    Rydian Resident Furvertâ„¢

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    Hopefully this goes without saying, but get mid-tower or full-tower if possible. The smaller the machine, the more likely it's going to be a headache getting parts to fit or work at all.
     
  13. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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    Don't forget that if you try to retrofit a Dell, you often have to replace the PSU too.
     
  14. Magsor

    Magsor I am watching you

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    You are getting ripped off buying a core2duo for that price. Make a new thread saying you want to buy a computer for 400$ and we can get you going. Tell us the games you intend to play. a lot can be done with that amount but not this way.
     
  15. Celice

    Celice GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    If you watch sales (like here), you can find you can make a better computer with the same number of parts as the DELL refurbished one, without breaking the wallet too much more. You just gotta keep an eye out. Also check out the trade/bazaar section? Some people are addicted/entertained by constantly upgrading their machines, and you can get away with some legit deals if you haggle well.
     
  16. Psionic Roshambo

    Psionic Roshambo GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    500 dollars for that antique? Yikes....

    If your going to spend 500 bones don't buy used get something new.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883229362

    Something like that will blow the doors off that machine, and likely compete with the next gen too (at least a little.)

    8GB's of DDR3, 3.3 Ghz 6 core processor, Nvidia GT 610 with 1GB. 500GB Hard Drive.

    The downsides?

    Not sure about the graphics card but it is DX11 and can run games fairly well I suspect.

    Also comes with Windows 8.... that might be an upside depending on your point of view but for me, I would wipe it and install 7.
     
  17. Minox

    Minox Spytech Employee

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    That GPU is on a similar performance level as a middle-ranged GPU from 2007 such as the 8600 GT, it really is not much in terms of graphics capabilities compared to newer GPUs.
     
  18. Psionic Roshambo

    Psionic Roshambo GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    It would probably do what he wants out of it for now.

    But that's why I listed it as a down side :P lol At least its upgradeable so in a few years if he wanted more muscle he could get a new graphics card and the base machine would still be beefy enough that it wouldn't be a waste of money to do it.

    Edit: For the OP, a good tip for buying video cards these days. Buy one generation behind, just as the next gen of cards is launching they clear out the older ones and sometimes you can pick up a top of the line card (top of the line last gen) for 150-170 bucks if you catch a good deal. I picked up a Radeon 4870 for cheap. It's not the best card now since that has been a long time but I can still play any game out right now.

    The reason I say pick up one gen behind is that the newer cards are a lot faster, but it will take years for games to come out that take advantage of them... So you get the last gen card for like 1/3rd the price of the latest and greatest. One gen behind seems to be the sweet spot for keeping your money in your pocket and still being able to play any game at the highest settings.
     
  19. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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    GT 610 being the lowest of their budget range, is comparable to Intel HD 3000 and 4000.
    Intel HD 3000 scores 320 in PassMark.
    GT 610 scores 347.
    Intel HD 4000 scores 483.
     
  20. Psionic Roshambo

    Psionic Roshambo GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    lol wild my card as old as it is scores 1,380.... supposedly you can pick them up for about 60 bucks.

    http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/gpu.php?gpu=Radeon+HD+4870