What Is The Ultimate Gaming PC?
I spend a lot of time playing WoW, Call of Duty, and other PC games. My rig is almost three years old, and I'm starting to think about a new system for my gaming. I actually don't live in my parents' basement, and have money to spend. What would you say is the ultimate PC gaming machine?
High End PC Gaming Systems
When it comes to gaming PCs, it's all about the speed. Every component must be the fastest in its class. Of course, the best is not cheap; high-end gaming PCs can cost from $3000 to $5000, and up to $10,000 at the extreme.
Some gamers build their own dream machines from scratch. But most turn to boutique custom-build companies that specialize in high-performance PCs for gamers. Alienware, CyberPower PC, Velocity Micro, iBUYPOWER and Falcon Northwest, Digital Storm, Origin PC, and Maingear are some of the most respected names in the custom-built gaming PC market.
Whether you are going to build or buy, you should be aware of the ingredients of a high-performance desktop PC designed for gaming:
CPU: specifically, a multicore processor such as the Intel Core i7-2600K. The faster, the better; the Core i7 can be overclocked to a staggering 5 Ghz! The 2-core and 4-core processors are common; some CPUs come with 6 cores for blazing multi-threaded speed. Speaking of "blazing," you definitely need a good liquid cooling system to keep these babies from overheating.
RAM is often maxed out in high-end gaming PCs, with as much as 16 GB. Speed is important in RAM, too; top gaming PCs use 1333 or 1600 Mhz DDR3 RAM.
Graphics processing units are critical for fast, smooth animation and 3D effects. You will often find more than one GPU in a high-end gaming PC, each sporting at least a gigabyte of memory. The Nvidia GeForce GTX 570 and 580 GPUs are a popular choice. ATI is another preferred vendor in high-performance GPUs.
Hard Drives and Peripherals for Gaming PCs
Solid-state drives are the performance gamer's choice. They're much faster than spinning hard drives, and they're silent. However, SSD storage is very expensive per gigabyte so most high-end gaming PCs use a mixture of SSD and spinning magnetic storage.
Hard drives in high-end gaming PCs tend to be huge in order to hold lots of games. Each game can occupy 35 GB of disk space or more. Speed is critical in retrieving data from the drive, so a very fast hard drive the Western Digital Velociraptor is often chosen.
Of course, a top-flight monitor is essential for high-performance gaming. Bigger screens are always better, but 19 inches is considered a minimum for hard-core gaming. A pixel response time of 5 ms or less is essential to keep up with fast-paced game action.
Gamers use many peripheral devices including mice, joysticks, steering wheels, digital guns, etc. So a high-end gaming PC comes with lots of connectors and many types of interface: USB, HDMI, Firewire, and so on.
Gamers' penchant for flashing lights and special effects extends to the cases of their macho PCs. Many gaming PC cases are made of see-through materials that show off the high-performance components inside. Internal lighting is also considered cool. But when all is said and done, it's the speed, baby.
So you want a recommendation for the ultimate gaming PC? The Alienware Area-51 ALX Desktop is designed for total domination, with a price tag that starts at $3499. I configured one with an overclocked Intel® Core™ i7 990x Extreme Six Core Processor (4.0GHz, 12MB Cache), 12GB of Triple Channel 1600MHz DDR3 RAM, dual 4GB GDDR5 AMD Radeon™ HD 6990 video cards, a 1.2TB hard drive (SATA-II, 10,000 RPM), and the Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium sound card. Price: $7818.
Do you have something to say about gaming PCs? Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 26 Jul 2011
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- What Is The Ultimate Gaming PC? (Posted: 26 Jul 2011)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved