Here's what I need: I need a computer powerful enough to atleast play Dawn of War: Dark Crusade (3D RTS; expansion to a ) at 1280x1024 on lowest settings with good frame rates. This is so me and friend(s) can play LAN together in my house.
Using spare parts, I can build a full computer with either option and both options. Which one should I do, and when I have another $80 later, should I consider doing the other so I can have 2 extra computers?
Dawn of War runs mostly playable on integrated, lowest settings, etc.
I have 5 computers in my house that play the game. The game supports up to 8 players. I just bought 2 new video cards recently, so the weaker ones got the old cards, everyone's got a card and everyone's happy. However, 6th computer can only use PCI video cards and only has 256MB of RAM. All it needs is a 512MB stick and good video card and it'll join the crew, and then I'll have 6. I don't think it's integrated is as good as some of the other computer's. On the other hand, if I buy the motherboard, I can use left overs/spare parts from past upgrades and build a whole new computer. The GeForce 7050PV is supposedly the most powerful Nvidia integrated unit as far as I know, and I expect it to perform well enough for lowest settings medium resolution.
Basically, I've already been doing what you said, I just want to have a total of 8 playable computers one day.
I've been thinking about the PCI video card and the DDR1 RAM option since this thread. Apparently 512MB of DDR1 ram costs 2x the price of DDR2 RAM. I think I'll drop that choice. It's pretty much a dead-end while the MB is upgradable.
So yeah, the final most important question is:
Radeon Xpress 1250 or GeForce 7050PV? Which is the most powerful?