Shoutout to the reader that sent me this! Here is Linus going through another challenge to build a computer out of a very small budget. Perfect for all of us cheap builders out here looking for a good solution.
I am back with the “What does my PC setup look like?” series that garnered the most views on my blog thus far! Thank you everyone for the great support, by the way. It goes without saying that I appreciate each and everyone of you that read the stuff I publish.
Last time, we left off on my audio setup. I mentioned that I went away with the traditional audio speaker system and just got rid of that entirely, using only my gaming headset to hear. I do have a rather cheap sound system on my regular work computer, as doing work on that computer with a headset on I would imagine is not an ideal comfort level.
My keyboard is nothing fancy, considering eveyrthing else. I really only need a regular keyboard; in my opinion, gaming keyboards for your computer are a bit overrated. I can see why and how they help in terms of gaming in something like a first person shooter, but the whole ideal is not for me. Same thing goes for my mouse. I do not have a gaming mouse with all the fancy buttons, but I have a sturdy Logitech that clicks and points just fine. Oh, and my score per minute in Battlefield 4 is nothing short of best among my friends, so please do not think that not having those accessories will hinder your performance at all in videogames. 😉
My actual computer:
Here it is guys. I will be quite brief (I mean I will not go right into detail with what model is what or even where I bought the pieces; there are several places that offer this advice and I hope you know where to buy parts from) with how I describe the setup, as it does get quite complicated, especially since you guys are a bit new to the whole tech scene, or at least the desktop-building scene. For those looking for a budget computer, I would definitely suggest looking at places like Tomshardware or Mysteryblock, along with CNET.com. Those places offer a lot of advice on making a desktop purchase if you do not already know a lot of about processors and all that tech sense.
I have a 6-core processor manufactured by AMD, and it runs at a solid 3.4Ghz. I will be weird here and mention that I never overclock my hardware. The whole point of having a separate computer was so my parts do not get burnt out as easily, and I just have this little notion about me that says overclocking will burn out my parts. Feel free to argue with my in the comments or my email if you disagree.
My graphics card is a GeForce GTX 980. I wanted to get the TI edition, but it got expensive and I do not really need the liquid cooling on that. Speaking of cooling, I have 3 fans in the system, which seems like a lot, but I got cheap when I bought my liquid cooling and I just needed a third fan for insurance.
I light up the whole case with Hue. I can not say much more than that, but the case has a glass side so I can see all my hardware performing as I game. The setup looks more beautiful this way, and because the gaming computer is a different entity than my browsing desktop, I like to keep things fresh and lit up.
I have an aluminum computer tower to store my processor, hard drives, graphics cards, and whatnot to fill out the rest of the exterior design. I was going to go cheap again with the case by choosing a plastic one, but I think this piece of aluminum really suits the whole “gaming simplicity” theme I have going on. At one end, I do not have anything too fancy, but at the other, my lighting and glass case for the computer really makes everything shine. It is complex simplistic, as I would describe.
To round off the gaming station, all my accessories, from my monitor, to my desktop machine, to my keyboard, sit on top of a nice, glass desk. This one is rather thick, so I would not imagine it breaking easily. The glass adds extra pizzazz to a well-designed computer setup.
Hey all, I found a very, very interesting video this weekend. Some guy built a $150 desktop using just parts that he bought online. Watch the video and tell me nothing is possible. You really can build something out of nothing. That budget is good for just a mid-tier video card but here is a guy on the Internet building an entire PC with 150 bucks. Great stuff.
The Steam Controller launched quite a bit a ways from this point in the year, but I just received mine probably 2 or 3 weeks ago. So this is going to by my first impressions, and I am sure some of you want to hear it.
The Steam Controller
Like I said in a post from the past, there is a lab at the office full of Alienware computers. For one of them, I bought myself a Steam controller just to give it a whirl. I booted it up and felt around with the controller.
For one, it feels quite sturdy enough though the whole thing is lightweight. I did not want to drop it because I felt it might just crack, so there is that piece of information.
The design is definitely different and it borders weird almost. It took a few days for me to really get used to the design since I am used to keyboard and mouse or a console controller, and in a way this combines those two.
Those are my first impressions of the thing, but I will have to test it out more and even play some games with it. This is neither positive nor negative, as I am just putting my feet in the water with the Steam controller.
Greetings all, I have received some interest in showing my personal setup for my computing needs. I want you guys to keep in mind that I have separate computers for working and browsing, and then one for gaming specifically. I am not rich and I do not claim to be. However, I feel that having these two computers separately will make the hardware last a little bit longer, since I am not frying the hardware pieces I need for work while I game. Plus, it lets me recycle some of the processors or video cards that I end up upgrading to my regular work PC.
Today, I will be mentioning my PC setup for my gaming computer. Please note again that I also like to keep the budget uncapped for this one, since I save money on most of my other aspects of life so I can spend a bit more on just this setup.
So I do not have a separate room for gaming, unfortunately, but the first thing you may notice when you come into my office is the gaming chair that I own. That is for the gaming station only, and I refuse to use it while working or browsing, since I know it could very well hinder my productivity. But one thing I would say is, if you have the money to go and buy one and you already have all your bases covered (by that I mean that your hardware pieces are the ones you want and need, your monitor is fine, and your accessories are all complete), then go and reward yourself with a gaming chair. These things really make my back feel better, especially since I am gaming for several hours on end on some occasions. It even has a nice neck rest and while I personally have no neck issues, it could really solve some problems for those that do.
On the actual desktop, I have a dual-monitor setup. These are the exact same ASUS monitor models, running at 1080p (not going to go into 1440p or 4k gaming) with a 1ms response time. I decided against getting curved gaming monitors because of the prices of them, but I am completely satisfied with my two displays.
I currently have no audio speakers to hear my game with, and no I do not use the display’s built-in speakers. I use a separate gaming headset because that is just what I prefer when playing on the PC platform. I know for some people, they prefer a surround sound audio system because, well it is louder and it feels a little bit more real. Plus, they can do away with the headset piece being attached to their head. However, I like my setup just fine and I think it works amazingly.
This is just part one of my gaming setup. I do realize that I have yet to reveal my desktop’s specs, but I hope I did give you sort of a realization of what I am working here. I will reveal the rest of my computing system on the next part, but do stay tuned.
Also, feel free to send in comments on how my desk is. Do let me know your desk system also, as I would like to hear a little from you guys too.
Until next time!
This post is a short little warning, or suggestion at the very least, to my fellow budget buyers: if you are in the market for a new computer, be it for work or gaming (which I am sure most of you are), then you absolutely should not be considering any Alienware products, specifically Alienware Steam Machines.
Now, let me clear about one thing. This is not a hate post on Alienware. In fact, I have a laboratory at the office with mostly Alienware products when we are game-testing. We find the Alienware consistently pushes out quality pieces in the market and the margin for error using these devices are very slim compared to more variant PC machines.
But the other point I did want to make clear is that people with a budget, mainly those with a rather strict one, should try to look elsewhere. This is because all of Alienware’s products are rather pricey, and while they are definitely worth the price just from the quality of the builds and then the power that they come in, they are best suited for those that have the money to spend.
I am a budget buyer like most of you, and it is rare that we ever see Alienware computers jump down to less than $500. That is specifically why I do not suggest buying them, since the starting price is way over that budget and it is oftentimes more power than you actually need.