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KSP Unofficial Official Computer Building/Buying Megathread. (All Questions Acceptable.)


Leonov
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Is it possible to remove RAM and replace it in a store bought all-in-one? Something tells me no...:P

Almost certainly. Even Dell don't invent their own memory formats. Best bet, pop the cover, find out what you've got in there. It's common for pre-built PCs not to have spare memory slots, so expect to replace rather than add to...

There's a handful of laptops, particularly ultra-compact, which solder the memory onto the motherboard to save space, but I'm not sure any of those would be suitable for KSP anyway ^^

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@Fuzzwad:

Sure that the RAM will fit unter that cooler? Those heatspreaders are unnecessary by the way. Also im very sure you wont need an i7, in 99% of the cases they are a waste of money. Also i have no idea what you want to do with that Win7 Ultimate.

I would also buy a bigger SSD, 256GB are not that much and they are realy cheap (especially compared to a 980 SLI).

Edit: Is there a special reason for the move to the General KSP subforum?

Edited by Elthy
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@Fuzzwad, considering the kind of money you're spending, have you thought about a Haswell-E build? The advantages would be six cores rather than four which will really speed up anything that can use them, more RAM capacity for future-proofing, and the option to run triple or quad SLI - might three 970s offer more performance and less microstuttering than two 980s?

The drawback would be potentially lower clock speed, depending on your luck with overclocking. Things that can't make good use of six cores could actually run slower than on a 4790K.

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Random audio related question: I'm using an Astro Mixamp Pro for mixing game audio and voice comms before feeding the audio to my headphones, but the problem with it is that I can't adjust them independently since it only has a single balance knob (adjusts balance between the two inputs, from 100/0 to 0/100) and a larger knob for master volume. It's getting quite annoying so I've been looking for a better way to do the mixing.

What I need is either a sound card that has three audio outputs (preferably at least two optical ones, one for game audio and one for music, and a 3.5mm for voice) and a normal mixer for mixing the audio, or some kinda USB mixer with three input channels through the USB cable (visible as three different output devices in windows audio output settings).

Need hardware suggestions.

E: Also, my headset (Astro A40) only has a single 3.5mm connector, and both the mic input and audio output go through that. Can I somehow split that into two separate connectors, one for the mic and one for audio, or do I need to buy an external mic?

Edited by CaptainKorhonen
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Well, I guess this is the thread to ask. Here's my gaming PC's specs that I hope to build:

http://pcpartpicker.com/p/xtcbf7

I'm probably going overboard with just about everything performance wise, but what's worth doing is worth overdoing. :cool: My plans for this PC are mainly gaming (with as max settings as you can get), with some video editing and possible virtual box things, who knows. If anybody has suggestions for it I would be glad to hear them.

Also, I would prefer not to use water cooling systems if at all possible, with my luck it wouldn't end well at all...

Since you just going overkill on just about everything you might as well get a larger HDD and SSD(faster too). Not really a fan of razer either.

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Alright guys, I bought a refurbished gaming laptop. It has an i7 Quad core (except, it shows 8 cores active when I check performance and stuff...) running at 1.6GHz (which I hope to overclock) and will have 8GB of ram soon, with a GeForce GT 720 I believe, with 1GB. Not sure if this is enough info, but my question is...just how powerful is this setup? How will it run games, specifically KSP? Thanks

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Assuming it's a recent i7 with a 4-digit model number then that's a decent laptop processor, but paired with a graphics chip that while a cut above laptop integrated graphics is still relatively slow. I expect KSP will run fairly well on it though you may want to lower some graphics settings, but more graphically-demanding games might struggle.

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Assuming it's a recent i7 with a 4-digit model number then that's a decent laptop processor, but paired with a graphics chip that while a cut above laptop integrated graphics is still relatively slow. I expect KSP will run fairly well on it though you may want to lower some graphics settings, but more graphically-demanding games might struggle.

Actually, I believe it's an i7 from 2010. How will it compare with my current desktop, which has an i5 quad core running a 3.4GHz with the intergrated grahpics?

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Where did you get an 2010 i7 with a 2013 GPU? Anyway, your PC CPU will be a lot better, but without a proper model number i cant say anything about the graphics?

Sorry, I put the wrong graphics card. My bad. :blush: The graphics card is a NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M - 1 GB VRAM

Here is a page with info on the exact laptop: http://www.cnet.com/products/sony-vaio-vpcf126fm-b/specs/

And here is the spec on the desktop I'm comparing that laptop to: http://www.officedepot.com/a/products/949691/Dell-Inspiron-3000-Desktop-Computer-With/#firstTab

However please consider the RAM upgrade on the laptop to 8GB and hopeful overclocking.

Also, why does the website say its a quad core, but when I opened up task manager and checked, it had core0 up to core7 running, which is 8 cores. I don't understand.

Edited by Endersmens
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I've only built a PC once but I've tinkered with quite a few. For my next PC I'm thinking about ordering the parts piece by piece instead of all at once. Is this a bad idea for anything other than losing the parts? I know I wouldn't because I'd be storing them in my crawlspace in packing peanuts still in their box inside those Tupperware bins used for Christmas lights. Would the parts be damaged in any way by sitting for at most 3 months? What part should I order first? I was thinking case because it's relatively cheap compared to the rest of the PC and would be nice to have to show friends what it would look like and rough size. Should I order anything last?

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I've only built a PC once but I've tinkered with quite a few. For my next PC I'm thinking about ordering the parts piece by piece instead of all at once. Is this a bad idea for anything other than losing the parts? I know I wouldn't because I'd be storing them in my crawlspace in packing peanuts still in their box inside those Tupperware bins used for Christmas lights. Would the parts be damaged in any way by sitting for at most 3 months? What part should I order first? I was thinking case because it's relatively cheap compared to the rest of the PC and would be nice to have to show friends what it would look like and rough size. Should I order anything last?

I don't think there would be problem letting them sit for a few months. However there's really no point; other then lack of fund in which case you should just wait because 3 months down the line something newer and better might come out. So, i'd advise against it.

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Actually, I believe it's an i7 from 2010. How will it compare with my current desktop, which has an i5 quad core running a 3.4GHz with the intergrated grahpics?
Again depends on the exact models, but probably about equal, or the desktop somewhat better. In the last few years integrated grahics have improved quite a bit and while not a patch on a good dedicated chip they're competent enough for gaming nowadays.
For my next PC I'm thinking about ordering the parts piece by piece instead of all at once. Is this a bad idea for anything other than losing the parts?
If any parts turn out to be faulty you will probably have more trouble getting your money back if it's a few months since you bought them.

Other than that, price shifts and product availability are of course a factor. You'd expect prices to go down over time, but sometimes they can go up, especially for memory. Things like cases, coolers, even keyboards and mice can be withdrawn from sale replaced by a new version that you actually don't like as much.

I'd say stuff you can test easily now is good to buy early, ie peripherals, and the case which you can visually inspect. But the core hardware I would want to buy close to when I would use it. RAM and hard drives *may* be worth buying if you have reason to think the price will go up.

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Again depends on the exact models, but probably about equal, or the desktop somewhat better. In the last few years integrated grahics have improved quite a bit and while not a patch on a good dedicated chip they're competent enough for gaming nowadays.

Could I upgrade the graphics card to a better GeForce? Would that help anything?

(sorry I'm asking so many questions, but the thread does say "all questions acceptable")

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Ok, so not a computer per-say but it lets me interact with it.

I'm looking at maybe getting a flight stick for games like Star citizen or warthunder or KSP. So far it looks like it's between the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro and Thrustmaster T.16000M. I trying to spend about $50.

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Could I upgrade the graphics card to a better GeForce? Would that help anything?

(sorry I'm asking so many questions, but the thread does say "all questions acceptable")

Do you mean upgrading the laptop? If that's what you mean, no. Laptops will only allow the drives and RAM to be upgraded. Anyway, I'm confused what you got this laptop for. Are you in particular need of a laptop, and that's why you bought it? The desktop you currently have will vastly outperform the laptop in CPU power, and you can only get marginal overclocking in a laptop. The graphics in the laptop are probably a bit better than the integrated one in the desktop (especially since it has dedicated RAM), but that's about it.

Basically, what are you using a computer for these days? You said you have a desktop, but you got a laptop despite the desktop being fine. If you need the mobility of a laptop, this one will run KSP alright, but as people have said if you try to run something more graphically intensive you will not get amazing performance. Plus, that laptop is pretty old already, so it will be obsolete faster. If you are fine using a desktop, I would just pick up an R9 270X, as that graphics card will run just about everything just fine and is a great value.

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Do you mean upgrading the laptop? If that's what you mean, no. Laptops will only allow the drives and RAM to be upgraded. Anyway, I'm confused what you got this laptop for. Are you in particular need of a laptop, and that's why you bought it? The desktop you currently have will vastly outperform the laptop in CPU power, and you can only get marginal overclocking in a laptop. The graphics in the laptop are probably a bit better than the integrated one in the desktop (especially since it has dedicated RAM), but that's about it.

Basically, what are you using a computer for these days? You said you have a desktop, but you got a laptop despite the desktop being fine. If you need the mobility of a laptop, this one will run KSP alright, but as people have said if you try to run something more graphically intensive you will not get amazing performance. Plus, that laptop is pretty old already, so it will be obsolete faster. If you are fine using a desktop, I would just pick up an R9 270X, as that graphics card will run just about everything just fine and is a great value.

Well, the desktop is my parents' actually. The laptop is mine. I got the laptop for gaming, and I had a low budget, and had to use birthday money plus it counted as my parents' gift to me.

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Does anybody know of a good cooler for this case that would fit with out having to remove the two side fans? I think the Hyper 212 EVO wont fit with out removing the side fans.

My case is too narrow for the 120mm coolers so I used this one, which is affordable and performs quite well on a mildly overclocked CPU. I can't seem to find specifics for that case's heatsink clearance, you might need to do a little more research to make sure it will fit.

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I bought this computer in 2012. According to SystemRequirementsLab, my computer does not even meet the minimum requirements for KSP - only because the dedicated video RAM is 256 instead of 512 MB.

Should I buy/build a new computer (I don't actually play a lot of games, though; I just want KSP to look good without having a jerky framerate, or be able to install those "visual enhancement" mods), or should I just upgrade to a better graphics card?

If I were to just upgrade my existing computer, how would I clean up all the dust that has accumulated, and how would I install things without ruining everything? (note that the case has a transparent wall so I can see what is inside)

Edited by Pipcard
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Should I buy/build a new computer (I don't actually play a lot of games, though; I just want KSP to look good without having a jerky framerate, or be able to install those "visual enhancement" mods), or should I just upgrade to a better graphics card?

As for your first question, you could simply try. Just install and run KSP and see how you like the performance. If that is okay, just play it that way. If not, you might want to upgrade. Before you do that, it would be good to verify whether your GPU actually is to blame, so you do not spend money on parts that will help you gain little performance.

Adding a GPU is simple, and if you buy something appropriate for the system (meaning: not too powerful, as the rest is not either) it should not cost you an arm and a leg either. If the CPU also turns out to be too slow, it might be a different story, however.

If I were to just upgrade my existing computer, how would I clean up all the dust that has accumulated, and how would I install things without ruining everything? (note that the case has a transparent wall so I can see what is inside)

Removing dust is not complicated. Be sure to power down your computer. Then, remove any screws closing the lid. Before opening the case, ground yourself by touching the bare metal of your case when still plugged in, a wall socket ground pin (and none other, be careful!) or other equipment you are sure is grounded. Unpainted central heating pipes are often used for this, though those are not always reliably grounded. You would preferably not wear synthetic materials and other things that build up static electricity easily. Cotton is typically a safe option. After that and removing the power cable from the PSU, it should be pretty safe to open your case, as long as you do not stab things with screwdrivers.

Cleaning is fairly straight forward. Do not use a vacuum cleaner, as those can throw vast amounts of static potential around. Just manually remove clumps of dust. You could use a cotton cloth or even a soft brush if you are careful about static build up. To get in between the fins and remove thin dust layers, you could use a can of compressed gas made for this purpose. These are available online for moderate amounts of money. Just be sure not to spray the cold liquid directly on things, as this could be potentially harmful. Never blow on things with your mouth, as tiny bits of saliva can wreak havoc on PCBs.

That is pretty much it :)

Edited by Camacha
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I bought this computer in 2012. According to SystemRequirementsLab, my computer does not even meet the minimum requirements for KSP - only because the dedicated video RAM is 256 instead of 512 MB.

Should I buy/build a new computer (I don't actually play a lot of games, though; I just want KSP to look good without having a jerky framerate, or be able to install those "visual enhancement" mods), or should I just upgrade to a better graphics card?

If I were to just upgrade my existing computer, how would I clean up all the dust that has accumulated, and how would I install things without ruining everything? (note that the case has a transparent wall so I can see what is inside)

While that graphics card is definitely something that should be replaced, that CPU is just barely the minimum (being similar to a Core 2 Duo), so I would definitely recommend a new computer. You could re-use a few parts like RAM, hard drive and the case, but you'd need a new motherboard as the CPUs on that socket are very low performance, even if you want to stick with AMD. As for getting a new computer, I would definitely recommend building it yourself, unless you are worried about doing it right (though it really isn't that hard). But, if you don't have enough money for a new PC, getting a new graphics card is a step in the right direction, and it can be used in any future computers you buy.

As for cleaning dust from a computer, turn it off, take it outside, and spray it with compressed air (from those disposable cans, or even a DataVac, which is more cost-effective in the long run). In fact, here's a video guide:

Edited by Weegee
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