Author Topic: Please help me choose a new PC!  (Read 226 times)

emptyanima

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Please help me choose a new PC!
« on: May 21, 2020, 06:17:09 AM »
I finally had a quote to fix my laptop, totalling £993, but the company would only provide a 6 month warranty for the repair. I have owned my laptop for just under two years and I felt the warranty was insufficient. They are returning my laptop unfixed, and I am in the market for something new.

I am currently considering the following options;

1) I am looking at a desktop setup, including the Alienware Aurora. Thereís a few reasons for this. Desktops are much more modular and therefore easier to fix and upgrade. The Aurora looks like a great option, and because itís Alienware you can access Dellís lengthy, high-quality warranty options. The only downsides with this are it being on the pricier side initially, and lacking the portability of the laptop, which I like to take with me when I travel overseas so I can game with my boyfriend. I may pick up a less powerful laptop for this purpose later on, once I have done some saving.

2) I am aware of a setup that uses a laptop, but the graphics card is in an external eGPU mount. This allows for some portability and makes it easier to cool the card, but still uses the laptop as a base. I am also inclined to use something from Dell for the warranty options. This should be cheaper than option one; the 4-year on-site warranty is a significant investment, but given my current problems I think itís worth it!

If anyone has any thoughts on the above or has another idea, please let me know! Looking forward to gaming with you guys on a PC of some description again soon!

« Last Edit: May 21, 2020, 06:19:40 AM by emptyanima »

Destinysdesire

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2020, 06:29:25 AM »
I voted for option 1, for a few reasons,

1. Unlike Laptops, they can be updated constantly over time. Laptops are nearly impossible to physically update.

2. Desktops really have the better coolant systems

3. I have had 500x more problems with laptops, then I ever had with desktops making a desktop far more dependable.

4. While not portable, it can never hurt to have both, so getting a Desktop as prime and a lesser laptop later just for use in travel, would be a great investment.

5. Keep all important data on the Desktop so if the laptop gets stolen....you lose nothing.

emptyanima

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2020, 06:31:41 AM »
Thanks for the input! All very good points.

Destinysdesire

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2020, 06:41:25 AM »
Gladly, I hope it helps!

SardineTheAncestor

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2020, 06:42:07 AM »
Laptops are pretty impressive these days. If you can keep them from overheating, they can play some of the newest games reliably and affordably. I think they age faster on account of the heat problems though.

At this point, I can't even see the old school web surfing devil on my shoulder convincing me to get a new desktop PC except for modding Half-Life: Alyx, but that's because I'm not in a position where I need one, even though my PC is over 5 years old now, so my situation might be unique.

e: I'd go for a desktop if you have any intentions of playing Alyx, the first actual VR game. If the portability of the laptop is important, you should go with that, imo.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2020, 06:43:50 AM by SardineTheAncestor »
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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2020, 07:38:58 AM »
I went with Option 1, though I'd steer clear of Alienware due to overpriced systems.

What games do you intend to play on the desktop? Budget? Intend to do any 1440p gaming in the future?

emptyanima

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2020, 07:55:33 AM »
The main other game that I play (aside from this one) is Final Fantasy XIV. Generally speaking, I donít tend to play brand-new, incredibly intensive games, though the benefit of having higher specs now is that I shouldnít need to upgrade anything for a while.

Bearing in mind that I also need to get peripherals like a monitor and keyboard, as well as the 4-year warranty, I am willing to go as high as £2,500 for everything.

I am not sure on the last point.

Destinysdesire

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2020, 08:17:10 AM »
The main other game that I play (aside from this one) is Final Fantasy XIV. Generally speaking, I donít tend to play brand-new, incredibly intensive games, though the benefit of having higher specs now is that I shouldnít need to upgrade anything for a while.

Bearing in mind that I also need to get peripherals like a monitor and keyboard, as well as the 4-year warranty, I am willing to go as high as £2,500 for everything.

I am not sure on the last point.

Shop around for used monitors, I paid 25.00 for a 17 inch at a privately owned computer shop because it had 3 LCD lights broken...other then that its perfect. Mouse and Keyboard...depending how high tech or low tech you go...you can pay as low as 20.00. The rest you could sink into a good tower.

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2020, 08:54:06 AM »
Personally, I'd go with option 1 as desktop end up being cheaper on the long term since you can only change certain pieces to keep it up to date and able to run most recent games on high graphics.

Though, I think you should consider the usage you make of your computer before anything else, I always wanted a desktop though it took about 5 years before I finally bought one after getting into gaming PC. Like you I moved around sometime and I liked being able to bring my laptop with me.

I had two gaming laptop, the first one was an Alienware which I had for 3 years, it was great! Probably the best laptop I've ever had, no overheating.. I changed it because the battery was pretty much dead after 3 years, I was using it a lot for school too. The only downside was the price, it was rather expensive, over 2k, and that was 6 years ago, these days Alienware are even more expensive, specially if want a 17inch screen like me on your laptop.

My second laptop, which is the worse thing I ever bought in my entire life was an Asus Rog I think... keeps overheating all the time which makes playing certain game a pain with the throttling and frame drop that comes with it.

There are a lot of good gaming laptop out there, just make sure you buy one that's big enough to have a good airflow and fans, as you overheating really is annoying and it'll happens even if you play a game like neverwinter night.

If you buy a desktop, I really don't suggest Alienware, while they're not bad computer, they're extremely expensive compared to other desktop you'll find if you look around. If you have the money though, well I was very satisfied with my Alienware laptop, I'm sure the desktop version as just as good.

If you're feeling confident, you could always build your own custom desktop... which is what I did personally and its great! Though it can be a bit hard if you have never done it and there is always a risk to break a pieces while manipulating them.

Overall, if you move around a lot, I really suggest you get a gaming laptop, there are good gaming laptop out there, sure you'll have to spend a bit more money on it then you would on a desktop, but I personally never regretted buying laptops during the time I was moving around a lot for school and stuff.

All of that is based on my personal experience, its not much.. but hopefully it helps ^^
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tylernwn

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2020, 09:05:51 AM »
1. Desktop: If you have the room space, a desktop is always better. Its cheaper to make, easier to upgrade and keep current, and easy to fix when things stop working.
2. Laptop: If you need to move around a lot or don't have the space, then a laptop is better. Generally they come well made, but have a lifespan of 4-6 years maximum.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2020, 09:12:57 AM by tylernwn »
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RickDeckard

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2020, 09:07:36 AM »
Tower: https://www.scan.co.uk/3xs/configurator/3xs-gamer-2060-super-amd (Admittedly overkill for the games you want)

Monitor: Depends on size you want, do you want two monitors or stick to one?

Keyboard + Mouse: shorturl.at/efmC8 & shorturl.at/jkmy4

I mean look, NWN can run on a potato and you don't play very intensive games but this PC will last quite sometime and can play some games that are intensive if ya want.

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2020, 09:23:44 AM »
Hey EA! IT's really cool to see you're considering upgrading to a more powerful system! I highly recommend that you go for a desktop build. The price-to-performance is just too good to pass up. That said... 2500 GBP is an absolutely massive budget, and will get you a computer that is pretty beastly. Even if you do plan on playing new releases, you can get a desktop setup that can run pretty much anything you'd want it to at high settings at 1440p neatly in the realm of around 2000 dollars (~1650GBP). I recommend building a custom PC. You can specify your build to your specific needs and shop around for better deals on parts. Building the computer itself is not nearly as difficult as it looks, and can even be a bit of fun :). And if that doesn't appeal to you at all, many PC part vendors will offer to build your computer for you for a small fee.

If you are considering building your own PC but do not know where to start, this website has a bunch of neat tiers of systems that are already determined to be compatible:
https://www.logicalincrements.com/

I hope you find the computer your looking for! :D
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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2020, 09:34:20 AM »
Aside from POTM, I don't play computer games, so I can't recommend a good gaming system. In general, though, I agree with tylernwn and your own reasoning about deciding between a laptop and a desktop.

If the computer is going to be stationary, a desktop is a better choice. To reduce weight and increase portability, laptops will always have to compromise in other areas. You will get less computer for the same amount of money. And if you don't need to move a computer, it's also better to keep it in one safe, controlled space where its lifespan will likely be longer. At my work we have desktops that are more than 10 years old still working merrily along, whereas most laptops are ready for the trash after four to five years. If they still work, they typically have little annoyances that the users are dealing with.

Someone I know who does game a lot bought Alienware for his last computer and has been pretty happy with it.

At my work Dell is the computer of choice. Surprisingly, the warranty service is reported to be very good when it has been required, but we also are a huge contract so maybe they try to keep us happy :) For example, during this isolation period a friend of mine needed service on her laptop, and they were able to help her reset the hard drive by working with her remotely. She had never opened a computer before.

Perhaps you can buy a desktop for at home and persuade your work that you need a laptop for your job?

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #13 on: May 21, 2020, 09:48:19 AM »
IMO, a desktop is always going to win out over a laptop, unless you -need- portability. Laptops tend to (eventually, yet inevitably) have more issues with overheating and batteries and charging cords, etc.

If you are not comfortable actually buying the parts and putting your own together, I would suggest going with something like Newegg's Custom PC Builder. Newegg is a reputable site that I have used for over a decade to buy PC parts because they tend to have the best prices, and you're usually going to get a better deal picking and choosing what you need over grabbing something "off the shelf".

emptyanima

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2020, 10:21:58 AM »
Snip

Thanks for the input! Regarding the laptop for work suggestion, I do have one already but as I work for a local authority, they are super locked down and if I somehow managed to install unauthorised software, I would be out of a job! I donít think it could even handle NWN, it has less than 4GB of RAM...

Having said all that, I am increasingly inclined towards the desktop option. The games I play with my BF are never super new or high-tech; our usual long-distance date is a romantic romp through Dark Souls 3 (some jolly cooperation!), which is certainly not new, so I would not need to invest a great deal in a laptop to take when I visit.

Thank you to those who have sent links, I will take a look at those. You also mentioned Dellís service, which is a big reason I am looking at them currently - I felt that PCSpecialist, from whom I bought my current custom-built paperweight, disappointed me in that respect.

I am certainly not confident enough to actually build a PC myself, though I know there are benefits to this. I will review everything you guys have shared so far.

emptyanima

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Re: Please help me choose a new PC!
« Reply #15 on: May 21, 2020, 03:01:53 PM »
I have made a decision and it has been ordered!

I looked around at many places and reviewed all the links you sent me, so thank you for that. Thanks also those who messaged me on Discord or made suggestions there, too.

I ended up choosing something between what the build-it-yourself crew suggested and the prefab; I have selected the parts on a custom desktop from a company called Overclockers. Their standard warranty is three years and covers parts and labour for all three, which is miles better than what I had previously and much clearer. They also offered an option with an additional one-off insurance payment which covers virtually all loss and damage for those three years, including theft and liquid damage.

Coming on to the PC itself, I wonít give all the specs, but it has 32GB of RAM, a Geforce GTX 2070 Super graphics card, and everything inside and including the case totalled £1,604.98. There are multiple customer reviews praising the performance, cooling and cable management.

All the other peripherals, including a mouse, keyboard, headset and a 27Ē, 2560x1440, 165Hz ASUS monitor took the total spend to £2,527.46, (including VAT), so very slightly over budget. However, I am super happy with this as a decision and I am looking forward to receiving it!

Thanks again for your help  <3