I'm dumb. Help me pick out a computer?

#1 Posted by Dimsey (943 posts) -

Apologies in advance because I know I'm long-winded as hell, but bear with me. Okay so it's been a while since I bought this PC and it's starting to show it's age. 
I can only run Diablo 3 on low, The Secret World & The Old Republic suffer from frame rate issues, ARMA 2? Forget it.   
So I'm looking to purchase a new gaming PC. Purchase. Not build. I don't know jack about hardware and putting stuff together, even with a handy video tutorial I don't trust myself to handle the goods. 
I'm looking to keep it under 2k, which I'm sure is doable. I paid over that for this POS and it's only lasted three years. What I get for trusting the guy trying to sell it on me. 

My first instinct was to check out Alienware.  
And whilst I know they have a reputation as being something of a rip-off, it's still under 2k and whilst I'm mostly hardware illiterate and can't no for sure - the numbers looks bigger than what I've got.  
I've linked to the deals I'm looking at and am interested in hearing from people who'd know better about what currently available games I could expect to run on those machines and about how future proof I can expect them to be. 
I'd like to not have to buy a new machine in another couple of years. Which I'm sure I could prevent if I could be arsed learning how to build one myself, but again not looking to get into that. 
 
I've also stumbled across another website called TechBuy. They seem legit?
Again I've linked what appears to my untrained eye to be an okay deal, though they do allow for a bit more customisation in regards to what is in the thing. 
I've got to figure seeing as how I'm expecting a lot of "just build your own" responses that this might be the next best thing, seeing as how I can pick what's in it at least.  
So if it doesn't look good on the outset if you'd be so kind as to look at the parts and tell me what'd be better then that'd be super.
 
And then there's this eBay seller.  
For some reason I'm a bit weary of buying  a computer off eBay. 
Doesn't help the layout of the info isn't so hot. I already don't know really what to look for, but this page seems almost designed to confuse me. 
The item linked seems a bit TOO cheap, but the dude's got good feedback. And the machine linked I can at least say has twice the RAM mine does.  
I know RAM is a good thing!   
 
I guess lastly I'll mention that I care more about performance than quality, if that makes sense? 
I mean I don't care too much whether I can run a game at the best quality, so long as I can run the game smoothly enough that it's playable. 
Just throwing that out there in case it impacts any recommendations ya'll might make. 
 
So if anyone can spare a moment to check these sites out and tell me your opinions (preferably whilst keeping the opinion that I should build my own to yourself!) well I'd appreciate it. 
Or if fellow Aussies reckon they can wrangle up better local deals throw them my way I guess!  

#2 Posted by AlisterCat (5397 posts) -

No Alienware. Flashy, but over priced.

#3 Posted by Bevinsky (176 posts) -

Definitely not Alienware, it's like the Apple of PCs. Overpriced as hell and you can get much better.

You say you don't want to build your own, but that is definitely the best way to get a good system. Prebuilts are always chock full of bloatware and they cost more than if you buy the components separately. Putting together a computer really isn't hard at all, and there are probably plenty of people on these forums who are willing to help you with it.

#4 Edited by Robot_Moses (110 posts) -

I know you said you don't want to, but I strongly, strongly recommend building one yourself. You can get a top of the line, bleeding edge machine for about $1,200. Assembling a rig is way easier than you'd think, and you'll be able to easily upgrade single components if you ever feel that you're lacking the power you need. There are dozens of guides out there that will take you through it step by step. You should also know that many local computer shops will put a machine together for you for a fee using your provides parts. If you *absolutely* cannot tolerate the idea, I recommend buying from Newegg.com, they have a nice selection of pre-assembled high-end desktops.

#5 Posted by stinky (1545 posts) -

only lasted 3 years? thats good.

#6 Posted by Codeacious (957 posts) -

@Robot_Moses said:

I know you said you don't want to, but I strongly, strongly recommend building one yourself. You can get a top of the line, bleeding edge machine for about $1,200. Assembling a rig is way easier than you'd think, and you'll be able to easily upgrade single components if you ever feel that you're lacking the power you need. There are dozens of guides out there that will take through it step by step. I know many local computer shops will put a machine together for you for a fee using your provides parts also. If you *absolutely* cannot tolerate the idea, I recommend buying from Newegg.com, they have a nice selection of pre-assembled high-end desktops.

This is pretty much what I was going to say verbatim. Newegg is the best when it comes to either prebuilt or building yourself, and I think everyone should have to build a computer at some point.

If you REALLY don't want to build it yourself, try to find someone who's willing to help you do so- you'll find having a buddy walk you through it makes it very easy and a great learning experience.

#7 Posted by CodeHero (133 posts) -

I built my computer about 6 months ago. I had never done it before, but thanks to youtube I was able to find plenty of videos to help me out. The money I was going to save was just too much to pass up due to fear. I really recommend you give it a shot. You can truly make that computer yours, you save money, and you'll feel good about yourself having done it.

#8 Posted by Subjugation (4693 posts) -

If you have an hour or two and can handle Legos, you can build a pc. Truth. I built my first without any prior experience or knowledge and just the included manuals and a youtube video. Pc came out picture perfect.

#9 Posted by connerthekewlkid (1771 posts) -

@Subjugation: but what if i always lost that ONE piece with my lego sets?

#10 Edited by Pr1mus (3512 posts) -

If you don't want to build the computer yourself you can always find a site that offer to assemble it for you. You select the components, pay an extra 50$ to have it assembled before shipping and than it's just plug and play when you receive it. I know http://ncix.com/ has that service in Canada. I don't know about its US counterpart or other similar sites.

And if you want to read on the subject and get an idea of what parts to look for these two articles are a good start:

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-cpu-review-overclock,3106.html

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gaming-graphics-card-review,3107.html

And about performance over quality there's no worries if you are willing to spend close to 2000$. You'll get plenty of both with that budget.

#11 Posted by Dimsey (943 posts) -

I appreciate what you guys are saying, I've expected these responses. But it's not up my alley. It's not a thing I trust myself to do. I'm really quite incompetent with anything DIY.  I was never great with Legos, heh.
I've looked at Newegg and whilst I'd like to use them they don't appear to ship to my country so that's ruled out.  
The TechBuy site I've linked seems almost an  equivalent  and they're local.   
Lets just say I've got more dollars than sense.  I know I'm paying a bit more but still any of the devices I've linked too are cheaper than what I paid for my current one, so I look at it as a win regardless.  
 
If someone would just please look over the links and tell me what I can expect in terms of performance I'd appreciate it. Don't mean to sound ungrateful, but I'm not looking to build my own.   
Maybe next time around, but for now I'm willing to pay a bit more for what we'll call  convenience .

#12 Posted by GS_Dan (1396 posts) -

@stinky said:

only lasted 3 years? thats good.

Only 3 years, cost over 2K and can only run Diablo 3 on low? That's terrible.

OP - I would really recommend considering building it. It sounds daunting and you might not trust yourself, but everyone starts at that point. It might not be as easy as Lego, but it's damn close. If you build it you'll be more comfortable with performing incremental upgrades and doing future builds. Not only is it a great learning experience but it really makes you feel attached to your machine. Plus it gives you bragging rights :D

#13 Posted by Pr1mus (3512 posts) -

@Dimsey: The alienware machine you linked is a big no-no. They throw in a very crappy graphics cards with and otherwise overkill CPU (at least when considering the GPU).

The Techguy computer is already more interesting, less expensive, better graphics card and overall more a balanced system.

The Ebay system is interesting. I don't see a graphics card in there but you could put a great one in there for 300-400$. GTX 670 maybe. Not sure how much they cost in Australia but you'd most likely stay under the price of the techguy computer with something better.

#14 Posted by Vestigial_Man (308 posts) -

I have similar views to the OP but have another query. What are warranties and guarantees like for building your own computer? If I screwed up building my own computer would I be able to get any sort of refund or would I be left with a grand worth of broken parts? If I bought a pre-built one I would be guaranteed a working PC and a full refund if it broke because it's not my fault in that scenario.

#15 Posted by SmilingPig (1337 posts) -
950$ and its yours. ( You sometimes need to wiggle the monitor cable to see anything pass the bios screen)
#16 Posted by GnomeonFire (643 posts) -

Check out Doghouse Systems. Although everybody is correct about building your own being the most affordable choice. But eh, do what you want.

#17 Posted by Doctorchimp (4063 posts) -

@Dimsey: Gross.

That Alienware computer doesn't even let you put in anything more than a GTX 555 in it.

Dude I've never built a computer either, but I think it's going to turn out okay. You just gotta do it man. You can build a PC right now for just a little over a grand that will definitely last you 3 years, but it'll still be maxing games probably.

#18 Edited by Cubical (637 posts) -

You are the type of person that should never play a game on PC stop now while you are still alive.

Buy an xbox play the crap dumbed down console noob shooters and stuff that looks and control horrible on it like that crap of duty crap. this is what you need.

http://www.hardocp.com/

#19 Posted by Dimsey (943 posts) -
@Cubical said:

You are the type of person that should never play a game on PC stop now while you are still alive.

Buy an xbox play the crap dumbed down console noob shooters and stuff that looks and control horrible on it like that crap of duty crap. this is what you need.

http://www.hardocp.com/

I have an Xbox already. I have a PS3 already. I have a Wii already. And they're fine. They have fine games too.   
But there are some PC exclusive games that I'd like to play and I don't think I should be excluded just because I place value on  convenience over the process of building my own rig.     
  
@Pr1mus : Thanks for at least coming back to answer my initial question, much appreciated.
#20 Posted by envane (1156 posts) -

@Dimsey: as an aussie id use pccasegear.com and auspcmarket.com.au at least to reference prices , even if they are doing you a good deal im sure 9/10 pre built pcs are usign a mark up that is months out of date ..

best bet is finding someone local who , when the parts are ordered , will build it for you for next to nothing .. or biting the bullet and learning yourself.

sure you can spend $500-1000 more on a prebuilt rig .. nobodys stopping you, just those of us who built our own cant see why you would do that , because its THAT easy .. but yeh .. at least if you get a packaged pc , get one that you can upgrade in the future when you feel up to the challenge ( plus at least being able to upgrade graphics cards/processor/ ram will increase the lifetime of your pc)

or get a laptop .. at least you have a proper excuse to buy a pre-built laptop

#21 Posted by Dimsey (943 posts) -
@envane: Thanks, I'll check them out. 
I ideally would like one I can upgrade in the future, I don't wanna spend this kinda money every time my PC becomes out of date. 
But for now it's convenience first. I get why you guys wouldn't wanna go this route, but it's not for me at this point in time. 
#22 Edited by Tsoglani (571 posts) -

Dimsey, what state are you in? CPL (Computer Parts Land) have branches in Melbourne and they are pretty helpful. They will also put together your PC (at a price though), but generally their prices are very good as they are basically a warehouse that sells direct to consumers. For anywhere between $1200-1500 they would hook you up with a PC that would destroy those Alienware ones. Check out their site - http://www.cplonline.com.au/

#23 Posted by SpydrMrphy (88 posts) -

@Dimsey: You might also like checking out http://www.giantbomb.com/pc/60-94/gaming-pcs-what-to-buy-and-how-to-build/35-420988/#256. They have some good ideas, and check out section xiv of that thread it has a list of system builders that can make some prebuilt PCs that easily upgradeable.

Still with all that said, I would still recommend, as most will, building your own PC. It's easy to do and quite a bit of fun. I always find I get more of a sense of accomplishment and attachment to my PC when I build it my self, and I can make sure that it will be capable for any upgrades I see fit for a whole lot less.

#24 Edited by Korwin (2721 posts) -
#25 Edited by myketuna (1631 posts) -

@Korwin said:

@Dimsey: http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=1411

PC Case Gear just recently started putting out their own custom pre built systems. In your case I feel this is the best option.

With you under $2k budget in mind I think this one is probably the best of the bunch unless you push for the $1999 model - http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1411&products_id=20646

The suggestions by seem like the best so far for you. That PCCG $1999 model looks really nice (aesthetically and technically) and you should consider it. Barring any crazy reason you couldn't, later on down the line you can just pop in a new graphics card to keep that system going for a while (even with your self-admitted DIY deficiency, it's fucking plug and play for the most part).

#26 Posted by Dimsey (943 posts) -

Thanks for the further suggestions guys.  
Will keep that pccasegear bookmark handy, I reckon I'll probably wind up going for one of those two machines. 
Not going to rush out and buy it right away, so plenty of time for other suggestions but seeing as how I know most of them will likely be more "build it yourself" responses I think we're probably done here. 
Thanks again though.

#27 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

I you're in Australia and don't mind paying a little more for quality I can easily recommend Scorpion Technology. They source from reliable suppliers and generally only sell premium parts. They will build a machine to order and always do a fine job when it comes to cabling. The dudes what make FRAPS use their hardware.

#28 Posted by Korwin (2721 posts) -

@SeriouslyNow said:

I you're in Australia and don't mind paying a little more for quality I can easily recommend Scorpion Technology. They source from reliable suppliers and generally only sell premium parts. They will build a machine to order and always do a fine job when it comes to cabling. The dudes what make FRAPS use their hardware.

Scorp are OK but their prices have gotten too high over the years on individual parts(probably from maintaining all the store fronts).

#29 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

@Korwin said:

@SeriouslyNow said:

I you're in Australia and don't mind paying a little more for quality I can easily recommend Scorpion Technology. They source from reliable suppliers and generally only sell premium parts. They will build a machine to order and always do a fine job when it comes to cabling. The dudes what make FRAPS use their hardware.

Scorp are OK but their prices have gotten too high over the years on individual parts(probably from maintaining all the store fronts).

Sure, but they are the only guys I know in Australia who actually can get EVGA to honour the lifetime warranty in Australia. :)

#30 Edited by Devildoll (830 posts) -

@Dimsey: okay, i wont force you to build a pc by yourself.

however, the way you structured that first post makes you look pretty not dumb actually.

If you have some spare time over, watch this video of tested building jeff's computer and then gauge if its something you can handle or not.

It's just like lego but more expensive!! ( i know you said you weren't good with lego though )

#31 Edited by MikkaQ (10224 posts) -

Those Alienware and Tech Buy computers are already behind the times, and that e-bay seller's computer doesn't come with a video card, so it's essentially useless for playing games.

I'd really try seeing if you know people who can assemble computers because for the same price as that Alienware you can get a PC that will run anything maxed out for the next long fucking while.

@Vestigial_Man said:

I have similar views to the OP but have another query. What are warranties and guarantees like for building your own computer? If I screwed up building my own computer would I be able to get any sort of refund or would I be left with a grand worth of broken parts? If I bought a pre-built one I would be guaranteed a working PC and a full refund if it broke because it's not my fault in that scenario.

I would say the warranty is even better because you bought every part, and each part has it's own warranty. So if anything individual breaks, you don't have to worry about shipping the whole computer to a repair centre, or drag it around town to a repair shop. Just yank out the part and send it to the manufacturer.

#32 Posted by stenchlord (219 posts) -

PCCG Intel GTX 670 Gaming System 1

$1569.00

Shipping Australia-wide will be around $50. You could get a higher specced build but unless you're running a multi-1440p monitor setup this should be more than enough.

#33 Posted by Ravenlight (8033 posts) -

I give it one more page before someone actually buys the OP some components and ships them to him. NOW YOU HAVE TO BUILD IT!

#34 Posted by Bourbon_Warrior (4523 posts) -

@Subjugation said:

If you have an hour or two and can handle Legos, you can build a pc. Truth. I built my first without any prior experience or knowledge and just the included manuals and a youtube video. Pc came out picture perfect.

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