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Everything posted by Fenix-Dark

  1. There was also a point in time when I gave the prospect of buying a high end gaming laptop a decent consideration, until logic lead me to build a desktop. Laptops are designed for portability, so they contain scaled down desktop parts that are made for laptops. Hard drives were never designed with mobility in mind, which makes them a prime candidate for failure in laptops and mp3 players. I suppose thats a good bit of the reason why there is such a big backing of SSD technology for laptops and portable devices; although that would add $700+ to the price of the laptop while decreasing your storage capacity. Laptops aimed at high end and gaming will be large, quite large, heavy, and have poor battery life; none of those aspects are desirable when regarding a mobile device. So you get a high end gaming laptop that can play games for 35 minutes on battery, but you'll always have it plugged in so that doesn't really matter. It plays new games at high settings for a year or so, and before you know it, the $2500 toy can't even play new games at the native resolution with low settings. Electronics are bound to be outdated, its just part of what makes it so interesting. Once your $2500 laptop isn't able to be used for gaming any more, its restricted to more mundane tasks like school work, web browsing, video playback etc, nothing too intensive. They're all fine uses for a laptop, especially since you can bring your laptop with you can work where you want to, but since you bought a 10lbs behemoth it is just as mobile as an xbox 360; sure you can easily unplug it and bring it to a friend's house, its just too big and awkward and not worth the hassle, so it stays on a desk in your living room. Now that laptop is essentially a 'family' computer with slightly increased portability. Thats why I think gaming laptops as a whole are just a bad idea. They wont be portable, so when they're unable to play new games, you still wont want to use the laptop as a laptop since its too heavy, big, and has poor battery life. If you are still inclined to buy a laptop and use it for gaming, I highly suggest limiting yourself to one no larger than 15.4". That size laptop has an acceptable level of portability, wont be able to drive the fastest gfx card so it will have a useful amount of battery life (2-4 hours realistically), and when it cant play games it'll still be convenient to use for basic work on the go. I bought a laptop with the intent of using it for school work, and some games, so I ended up with a nice 15.4" laptop with an 8600GT Mobility. The graphics card doesn't make the laptop unbearably hot, or severely limit the battery life. While I could probably squeeze an hour of counter strike: source on the battery, any time I would be playing that game I would have a mouse, a chair, and a table to use, and a power outlet within reach, so gaming battery life isn't too much of an issue there. Once my laptop wont be able to play any new games, it will still have its initial amount of portability and it will be a fine laptop for browsing the web in starbucks and checking or checking my email. If your only intention is gaming, buy a desktop. If you're like the majority of us and spend most of your time staring at gaming benchmarks and various tech sites, think realistically and for the long term, that mobility 8800GTX is not going to load ms word 2007 any faster, so why endure its problems when it yields no benefits? Hope that makes your decision a bit easier --Fenix
  2. Rather than installing individual codecs, I suggest using either MPlayer or VLC for video playback and dvd playback; by default they support most if not all common video and audio formats. Good Luck! --Fenix-Dark
  3. To me it seems that this section of the forums (Recommendations and Hot Deals) is overwhelmed by advice wanted/recommendation threads. Whenever there is a hot deals thread, it seems to disappear by a flood of newer advice wanted threads. Would it be possible to split the recommendations and hot deals section into two separate entities, one for recommendations and one for hot deals? Thanks, Fenix
  4. the usb xbox 360 controller works reasonably well in windows. Only issue is that the triggers show up as the Z axis, so if you push both of them as far as they go, they'll cancel each other out and have the same value as if they weren't being pressed down at all. I also have a saitek p3000, it works well, and is wireless. Its a ripoff of the ps2 controller, and is quite comfortable. Only thing is that the windows software is pretty miserable, but it works flawlessly in linux.
  5. ok, problem solved. All i needed was a bios update.
  6. it doesnt seem to be a monitor issue. ATI tool displayed artifacts and said there were artifacts. I tried my dell monitor, and still had motherboard beeps depending on where the ram occupies the slots, and artifacting.
  7. Two days ago, only in windows xp, I noticed some green dots on the background and in SOME games (warcraft III was flawless, cs, css, dod:s, steam games didnt work along with atitool's stress test). I tried underclocking my gfx card and upgrading to the latest beta drivers, but that was of no help. Yesterday I got a temporary replacement at bestbuy, a 7950GT. But I'm still plagued with the same artifacting issues. So this unusual artifacting seems to be unrelated from the graphics card. The next thing i tried was to swap ram, and test the ddr ram from my other (working) computer, which showed me even more problems. Based upon which ram slot is being used, i get a different problem. The one closest to the cpu gives me long repeating beeps and the computer wont post. Same for the one second closest to the cpu. The 2nd farthest from the cpu gives me a ton of artifacting, in the bios/post screens in addition to windows. The farthest from the cpu only artifacts inside windows, and its much less sever than the 2nd farthest slot. I've tried with my ocz ram kit, my corsair ram kit, and my lone stick of pqi ram. All exhibit the same problems when they are in those corresponding ram slots. Now here's what confused me, I took the ocz ram kit that occupied the now broken computer, and stuck it into my spare pc that had the corsair ram. For dual channel mode they need to go in slots 1 & 2. While in there, i got motherboard beeps and the computer wouldn't post, but in slots 1 & 3 (single channel mode) it would post fine and the os would load issue free. Btw i tried the new 7950GT in the spare computer (linux), and there was no artifacting at all. It seems very odd to me that a motherboard could cause artifacting in certain spots in windows. I understand that the ram slot anomoly could be caused by a bad motherboard, but the unique artifacting threw me off. To remedy this situation, I'll rma the ocz ram, and the psu (just incase), but I can't rma the motherboard, since i replaced the broken stock cooler with the thermalright hr-05-sli, and discarded it. I doubt dfi would take back a motherboard with a non-stock heatsink. Now i'll need a new motherboard, but newegg's s939 selection is anything but spectacular. I'm open to suggestions on thing to try to fix the computer, and replacement motherboards, or where to get that dfi stock POS chipset hsf. (BTW, i tried everything with my cpu @ stock frequencies) Thanks, --Fenix
  8. If gaming isn't a primary concern you should take a look at the Apple MacBook line of laptops. they're 13.3" have c2d cpu's, are reasonably priced, and come with os x (which you can leave or ditch for xp, or have both). Apple offers a 3 year extended warranty which I've heard good things about. Only downside to that laptop I can see is the integrated graphics. I may buy one myself for college. the white macbook with a 2.0ghz c2d, 2gB of ram, 160 gig 5400rpm hdd, and extended warranty comes out to $1973 or $1763 if you choose to use the educational discount.
  9. I'm not the biggest creative fan out there, and if other cards had the same linux support I'd go for one of those, but they dont... I've used my audigy 2 zs in linux and windows xp and have had 0 problems with it, you may want to reconsider and get one of those cards.
  10. Your current power supply wont leave you with a comfortable buffer if you get any current high end psu. Your 2ghz single core cpu will also bottleneck just about anything faster than a 7950GT with a resolution of 1280x1024. To get a nice balance, you'll need to upgrade your cpu along with your gfx card, and due to higher power requirements, you're psu too. If you're going to be building a new computer in the near future it doesn't make sense to spend lots of money now, and in the near future. I wouldn't go all out for your temporary rig. A 7600GS (one with GDDR3 ram) would run nicely like this one for $125 -$20 MIR http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16814145140 In reality its a 7600GT in disguise, with the help of a #2 pencil you'll be able to get it to run just as fast, if not faster than a slightly more expensive 7600GT. I bought a used MSI passively cooled 7600GS, threw on a low rpm fan, did a quick pencil volt mod, and its core is running at 650Mhz, and the memory is a moderate 458Mhz (mine has ddr2 memory unfortunately and doesn't have the oc headroom that the GDDR3 does.) An opteron 165 would accompany a 7600GS or GT very well. its $150 on the egg http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16819103588 and has quite a bit of overclocking headroom. My main rig has on running at 2.7Ghz. With the previously mentioned components a new psu isn't all that urgent, but it certainly couldn't hurt. Note that recomended psu wattage for the nf4 ultra-d is 480Watts as a minimum. I'm a fan of corsair, they've got great products and service to match. If you're willing to buy a new psu, you should go for the corsair hx520w. Quality psu's dont come cheap, its $130 with a $10 MIR. Psu's are the one component you shouldn't cheap out on, since it can have adverse effects on the rest of your components. Note that the corsair psu is modular (meaning that the cables attach to the psu as needed, which makes wire management a bit easier) and this is one of the quietest psu's on the market. BTW, computers are never an investment in the usual sense. They only go down in value over time, like most cars. They also happen to be productivity killers, they're terribly distracting, enough that you'd be better off with a 10 year old type writer =P. Good luck, and the best advice I can give is the figure out for yourself how much your time is worth. If you're a kid who gets $10 a week as allowance, it wouldn't be wise to spend $300+ to do a quick upgrade as you'll be getting a new computer in the near future. New stuff from AMD, Intel, and Nvidia will be released in the not so distant future, only you can determine if your time without those components is worth the wait and the extra cash on a temporary fix, but don't get sucked into the trap of waiting forever for the next best thing around the corner.
  11. As I said before, Linux doesn't hide any instability problems at all, unlike windows. Unless your computer is 100% stable, you WILL encounter errors in linux. Its a good thing since it doesn't lead to wierd problems down the road when you thought your memory timings/oc was stable "enough."
  12. I have a bit of a different view on linux. It was only recently that it was decided by a few distributions that it should be easy enough to use/install for someone with an "IQ of 6." It was created as a project, not something to be mass marketed as easy to use. Computers are fundamentally complicated, I give Microsoft the credit they're due for simplifying the process. But they may have simpified it to the point where it dumbs down the users where they cant cope with something different. Just about any linux/bsd user can figure out how to use a windows computer in 15 minutes. Thats not to say that Linux users are smarter. It takes time to read and patiences to use linux, and those "skills" and habbits will carry over to whatever you use, be it MS windows XP, Vista, or OS X. What is happening now, and has been happening for the past few years is that linux is trying to be manipulated into something its not. It isn't as easy to install as os x or windows xp, but thats part of its design and your ability to manipulate every part of the software. After its installed and tweaked enough, it can be just as easy to use as OS X or Windows, if not easier, with all the productivity reducing eye-candy. To some degree its a blessing that Linux is "hard" to install. It keeps the people afraid to try something new and different from using it. The same people who have windows habbits of just clicking "next, next, next" and not reading what options are checked when installing applications or drivers. Those same people who are used to frequent Operating system problems when its clearly a poorly coded third party application or driver's fault. They would get angry and blame linux when some specific 3rd party app created by some troll high on nutmeg and oregano crashes. They'd go around spreading propoganda saying "OMG this linux . sucks, it keeps crashing and wont work." In a perfect world windows would be 100% stable, but people get money from selling exploits, and others dont care about quality of the drivers for your clearance special digicam. If you install windows xp on compatable hardware with no 3rd party drivers or applications, I have no doubts that it would be 100% stable, but how useful is that?
  13. Might wanna add a few things regarding grub. GRUB cannot boot DOS or Windows directly, so you must chain-load them (see Chain-loading). However, their boot loaders have some critical deficiencies, so it may not work to just chain-load them. To overcome the problems, GRUB provides you with two helper functions. If you have installed DOS (or Windows) on a non-first hard disk, you have to use the disk swapping technique, because that OS cannot boot from any disks but the first one. The workaround used in GRUB is the command map (see map), like this: grub> map (hd0) (hd1) grub> map (hd1) (hd0) This performs a virtual swap between your first and second hard drive. Caution: This is effective only if DOS (or Windows) uses BIOS to access the swapped disks. If that OS uses a special driver for the disks, this probably won't work. Another problem arises if you installed more than one set of DOS/Windows onto one disk, because they could be confused if there are more than one primary partitions for DOS/Windows. Certainly you should avoid doing this, but there is a solution if you do want to do so. Use the partition hiding/unhiding technique. If GRUB hides a DOS (or Windows) partition (see hide), DOS (or Windows) will ignore the partition. If GRUB unhides a DOS (or Windows) partition (see unhide), DOS (or Windows) will detect the partition. Thus, if you have installed DOS (or Windows) on the first and the second partition of the first hard disk, and you want to boot the copy on the first partition, do the following: grub> unhide (hd0,0) grub> hide (hd0,1) grub> rootnoverify (hd0,0) grub> chainloader +1 grub> makeactive grub> boot here's an example. # # Note that you do not have to rerun grub after making changes to this file # NOTICE: You do not have a /boot partition. This means that # all kernel and initrd paths are relative to /, eg. # root (hd0,0) # kernel /boot/vmlinuz-version ro root=/dev/hdc1 # initrd /boot/initrd-version.img #boot=/dev/hdc default=1 timeout=8 splashimage=(hd0,0)/boot/grub/splash.xpm.gz hiddenmenu title Fedora Core (2.6.9-1.667) root (hd0,0) kernel /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.9-1.667 ro root=LABEL=/1 rhgb quiet initrd /boot/initrd-2.6.9-1.667.img title Microsoft Windows XP Pro 32 bit root (hd1,0) map (hd1) (hd0) map (hd0) (hd1) unhide (hd0,0) hide (hd0,1) makeactive chainloader +1 title Microsoft Windows XP Pro 64 bit root (hd1,1) map (hd1) (hd0) map (hd0) (hd1) unhide (hd0,1) hide (hd0,0) makeactive chainloader +1 #Fenix-Dark r0x0rz =P
  14. I needed a second well built case a while ago, and decided to go with the gigabyte triton. this is about as close as the model I have that newegg sells http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16811233006 mine doesn't have that ugly plate in the front... what where they thinking? Regardless of that case's looks, they have a nearly toolless design, you need a screw driver for the motherboard/mounts, but the hdd/optical drives and expansions slots are all tool less. The case has dual 120mm fans, and comes with the usuall necessities. Front usb/audio ports and a front 1394 port. Its pretty spacious and everything assembles very quickly. Its a fine choice and isn't very expensive.
  15. Yea, I could do that if I only wanted to use the front audio ports, but I'd like to keep the rear ones too, and external cables going around pci cards are a mess.
  16. One of my two pc cases has 0 free 5.25" bays, so the platinum front panel (aka live drive) is out of the question. The other case is silver, and the black box wouldn't look right. On top of that I'd rather not spend much money for something I shouldn't need to and I really don't think they're all that visually pleasing. Its a black box with an assortment of connectors strewn about, not my taste. I also don't like the placement of the live drive, my headphone cables would get in the way of the dvd drives, and that wouldn't be much fun. Both cases have the front audio ports and I'd still like to use them. I just hate having crippled/disabled features, even if I won't use them (and I will be using the front audio ports).
  17. Many pc cases these day come equip with an analogue audio and microphone port on the front for convenience. They also happen to use a 9 pin 2x5 header that only seems to have its male companion on motherboards. What about those of us that have a dedicated sound card and want to use those front audio ports? If you happen to be lucky enough to have an audigy2 zs or newer Creative Labs sound card, there is a solution. http://audigy2zshowto.blogspot.com/ There is an internal 10 pin connector that can be rigged up to that front audio port header. Both of my computers have an audigy2 zs sound card and the front audio ports, so I'm going to follow that guide and make two of those cables. I am very lazy and would gladly purchase pre-made cables if they exist. Do any of you happen to know if such cables are out there? And have you guys done this or rigged them up in another fashion? The thought of being able to plug in my headset to the front audio ports on my case while not having to unplug my speakers in the back of my pc for when I'm in the mood for some cs:s makes me feel all warm 'n fuzzy. I'm open to tips and suggestions --Fenix
  18. Well, I got an offer I couldn't refuse. Thanks.
  19. "Is it also a must that it has the 5.25 I/O drive?" I really don't care for the 5.25" I/O drive. The audigy2 zs doesn't come with one, and the audigy2 zs pro or w/e its named is exactly the same card, but with an internal I/O drive. The Audigy2 zs platinum pro has an external box which I'm not interested in because it limits the number of I/O on the sound card its self. I really have no use for the external I/O box since I'll be wiring up the front case audio ports to the sound card, and honestly, the internal I/O box on the middle model is quite ugly. But I'm desperate enough that I'll buy one with the internal I/O box and just not use it. Sorry for the misunderstanding. Thanks, Fenix
  20. ..hate bumping posts, but I really want that sound card
  21. I'm still interested in buying a new or used audigy2 zs or the audigy2 zs pro (which ever one has the internal breakout box) not the platinum pro with the external box. I'll go up to $45 for a used one. It'll be used for linux, and the x-fi's have 0 linux support atm so they're out of the question now. If you're interested hit me up with a pm! Thanks, Fenix EDIT: also interested in an Audigy 4
  22. I've had this monitor since October, and its been fantastic. fast response time, sharp colors, small footprint, good cable management. This monitor isn't without faults. The remote is trash, Its flimsy, ugly, and has a short line of sight range. Also the monitor is very picky when using the DVI input. On more than one occasion, the screen wouldn't turn on until I rebooted my pc (which was plugged into the monitor via DVI), just a minor annoyance. Also when viewing tv or anything in Picture in Picture, the smaller of the two has a blue box outlining it, which is a bit distracting. It also made me realize how crappy (relatively speaking) my dell 1703FP monitor is The monitor is full of useful features, and is worth every penny.
  23. http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp;js...d=1142294266684 $169 without any rebates, add on this coupon http://emailinfo.bestbuy.com/pp/editor_NET...&A=1007&ci=6603 thats 12% off if you've got a rewardzone card, and you've the hard drive for $149.60 + tax. Best deal I've ever seen on this hard drive. I'll probably pick one up today myself.
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