This is my first post for a topic not intended for a larger audience =). I’m building a new machine. I ordered the parts from Newegg and they should be here on Monday. Although… they are here in TX already (yes, I have the tracking number stats open in my browser right now, did you think I wouldn’t?), so I might be making a roadtrip this weekend just to have something to do other than dream about hardware.
Needless to say, I’m looking forward to it. The last computer I built in 2008 was primarily for media (our RAID box), so disk read performance was paramount over any sort of gaming etc. Juliette uses it as a Sims 3 box (via PlayOnLinux), and Scarlett plays her PBS/Disney/Nickelodeon flash games on it, so it works pretty well for that and serving up media to the PS3. But it’s an unorganized mess and even Juliette playing the Sims beats the shit out of the video card (a 7300 SE / 7200 GS I picked up for $30 just to be able to attach a monitor to the machine), so I decided to pick up an identical 460 GTX for it as well. I can’t tell you how hard I wanted to keep it a secret and SLI my box, but the Sims stop cranking the box and being able to use the HDMI output to the TV might cut the PS3 transcoding step out of watching media if I can figure out sound.
Just for shits though, I decided to lookup the benchmarks. Ouch. According to videocardbenchmark.net which is run by “Passmark” who I’ve never heard of (but also have no reason to doubt their relative numbers) the card that’s in there (7300 SE / 7200 GT — according to lspci) got a 66, and is ranked 656 of all of the cards they ranked. To put that in context, the Geforce TI 4400 I bought when I was… geez… a sophomore in high school (2002) got a 216 and is ranked 349. I couldn’t believe it. I mean, I knew it was a $30 card and it wasn’t going to impress anybody by any stretch of the imagination, but *damn*, being a third as powerful as a card I bought 6 years previously. Goddam. Now, I’m not sure how this benchmark really works, nor do I really care, but the 460 GTXs got 2296 for an overall rank of 7. And that’s vanilla (mine are overclocked) and with an unspecified amount of RAM (either 768M or 1G, mine are 1G).
So, quite a hefty upgrade for the RAID box. Assuming that the benchmark scales linearly (which might be a bad assumption), that means the card I’m putting into it is 35x better than the POS I’m taking out. Hope you enjoy actually being able to play the Sims, honey =).
Anyway, the stats: 3.0Ghz Core i7-950 (Bloomfield), 4GB of Kingston DDR3 1800 RAM, an overclocked Gigabyte GTX 460 video card, a Western Digital 1TB SATA 3Gb/s drive, a USB 3.0 compatible ASUS Sabretooth motherboard, a 750W Corsair PSU and a full size heavy-as-balls Antec case. Topped off with dual ASUS 24″ 1920×1080 widescreen LCDs.