For the first build of the challenge we decided to build a machine for the non-technical person as part of the Cheapest Gaming PC Challenge, so we picked an off-the-shelf PC and added some minor upgrades to see if it would play the most demanding of recent PC game releases.
These are the components we used for the first build of the challenge:
|Zoostorm 7270-8037 PC (AMD A10 5700 Quad Core 3.4GHz, 4 GB RAM, 1 TB SATA HDD, Windows 8.1 with Bing)[comes with keyboard and mouse]||£234.99|
|EVGA Nvidia GeForce GT 740 Superclocked Graphics Card (2GB, GDDR5, PCI Express 3.0)||£73.54|
|Edimax EW-7811UN 150Mbps Wireless Nano USB Adapter||£7.49|
Here’s the PC Specifications:
|Item Weight||8 Kg|
|Product Dimensions||47.5 x 41.2 x 24.6 cm|
|Item model number||7270-8037|
|Processor Speed||3.4 GHz|
|RAM Size||4 GB|
|Computer Memory Type||DDR3 SDRAM|
|Hard Drive Size||1000 MB|
|Graphics Chipset Brand||AMD|
|Graphics Card Description||AMD HD 7000 Graphics|
|Operating System||Windows 8.1|
Did it go as planned?
The graphics card was purchased at a later date as we quickly realised that the machine’s integrated graphics card couldn’t handle the more demanding games. We were advised by a competing colleague that the GDDR5 was better than the GDDR3 because the GDDR5 carries double the bandwidth of GDDR3 at the same clock frequency – in short GDDR5 is better for transferring larger amounts of data (which the more demanding games may require).
Will it run the games?
We reckon that this machine should be able to cope with most games with the settings ramped down – e.g. medium to low detail, lower resolutions. But the more graphically demanding games are likely to push this machine to its limit.
But is it the cheapest?
In terms of being the cheapest, although our machine had respectable specifications and already had input devices and OS pre-installed, it is likely that the more technically-minded teams will be able to source more powerful and cheaper components than our off-the-shelf tower.
How did it perform?
To be revealed – in the competition results!
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