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Gaming Computer - Seeking knowledge

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September 10, 2011 1:25:04 PM

Hello Tom's Hardware! :) 

First I would like to apologize if I've managed to post this under the wrong category/sub-category.

My name is Sebastian, and I'm looking to buy a new computer, mainly for gaming.
I've never actually been a hardcore gamer before, and I doubt I'll do a lot of online gaming with whatever new system I get. I'm used to playing games on my Xbox 360.

The most essential game my system needs to run is The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, preferably on ultra settings. I know it's impossible to tell what requirements this game holds, but some of you are great at speculating! And yes, I will play other games as well. I just want to make sure my system will manage Skyrim on ultra and with enhancement mods.

I'm not really a tech-head though, so that's why I'm seeking advice from you. (Budget is not an issue, but I would like to keep the cost as low as possible).

I've already found a computer which I was allowed to customize. If I buy it, it will be sent prebuilt. I wish that you could point out any bottlenecks, and if I should choose something else instead of what I've already chosen:

Case: Fractal Design Define XL Black Pearl

PSU: Silver Power SP-SS620M 620W PSU

DVD: Sony Optiarc DVD±RW Writer, AD-5280S

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 975 Black Edition

Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-870A-UD3, Socket-AM3+

RAMemory: Kingston DDR3 HyperX 1600MHz 16GB

HDD: Seagate Barracuda® 7200.12 1TB

SSD: Corsair SSD Force Series™ F60A, 60GB (+ OEM SSD 2.5" to 3.5" Bracket SATA)

GPU: Gainward GeForce GTX 560Ti 1GB PhysX

OS: Windows 7, 64-bit

Thank you very much!
September 10, 2011 1:49:58 PM

Elder Scrolls: Skyrim
Recommended System Requirements

* OS: Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7
* CPU: Core 2 Quad 3 GHz
* RAM: 3 GB
* HDD: 15 GB free disk space
* Graphics: 512 MB Graphics Memory
* Sound Card: DirectX 9 Compatible
* DirectX: Version 9.0c

Supported Graphics Cards:

Minimum – 8800 GT
Recommended – Geforce GTX 460/Radeon 5850

Sounds like you have it covered. (560 > 5850 > gtx 460) Suggest you post to the Skyrim forum and ask if GTX 560Ti users can max the game.
September 10, 2011 2:14:00 PM

Thank you tsnor! I will do as you suggest and ask on the Skyrim forum :) 

However, do you know if this rig will play any other games on ultra? Is the GPU and/or CPU good enough to play the latest games, etc? I'm also looking forward to BF3 and Arkham City, if you catch my drift.
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September 10, 2011 2:35:43 PM

This is a kick ass system that is nicely balanced. Should be very playable with new games for a while. Weakest link might be the CPU, look at some benchmarks compared to i5-2500 based systems if you keep pcs for 3+ years. Otherwise you should be set. (PSU seems an OK brand based on the one review I read)

One possible trouble, most people game at 1920X1200 or smaller. If you have a monster high resolution monitor you'll need more video.

Maybe someone using a 560Ti can comment.
September 10, 2011 2:38:51 PM

aside: if you go with the SSD system drive then you need to be very careful to always force game installs onto your 7200.12 drive instead of the SSD. If you forget the SSD will fill up and the part of installs that must go in c drive directories will fail and you will not be happy.
September 10, 2011 3:09:56 PM

I'll be buying a 1920X1200 monitor. 1G is sufficient, am I not wrong? I read that 2G is overkill when you play at 1920X1200.

I'm aware of the SSD/HDD issue, and I'm only going to use the SSD for bootups and the likes.

I read up on some benchmarks and it seemed that the AMD Phenom II X4 975 is terrible, compared to i5 2500, haha. I'll look some more into it :) 

Thank you tsnor, you're very helpful!
September 10, 2011 4:27:25 PM

Seppy said:
I read up on some benchmarks and it seemed that the AMD Phenom II X4 975 is terrible, compared to i5 2500, haha. I'll look some more into it :) 


Nothing to look into. Just go for the i5-2500K :D 
September 10, 2011 4:32:17 PM

AMD Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition Deneb 3.2GHz

Not sure where you are purchasing from but the 955BE will do 3.6GHz quite easily, most likely at stock volts (as will the IMC/NB at 24000MHz).

The difference in price in the US is over 30%.

As long as your minimum frames are above 50 you will be fine, and from the looks of things there have not been any big changes to the game engine from 'Oblivion' -- looks to be a DX9 remake. I suspect the PhII and a 560Ti can handle that with ease.

Another thing -- cards based on the Radeon 7000-series should be hitting the market in Q4 which, if anything, should drive video card prices down in the next month or two.



September 10, 2011 6:14:27 PM

That is great info wisecracker! Thank you :)  I will definetly go with the i5 2500k
!