Until about a month ago, I had been out of the gaming loop since about 2006. I never got an X-Box 360, Playstation 3, or Nintendo Wii. But as Deus Ex 3 was released last summer, I could not resist getting a new computer and upgrading it. For me, Deus Ex: Human Revolution was the killer app that led me down the path to purchasing a new GPU, a new power supply and a memory upgrade. After deliberating for a few weeks, I decided on the AMD Radeon HD 6850, Sapphire. Now I’m playing Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim on the highest setting no problem.
Compared to other similar cards, the Sapphire was easy to install. I had previously purchased a Diamond AMD Radeon 5870, which was nearly impossible to install; I returned it after AMD’s website recommenders calculated the optimal GPU for my purposes. The only thing that came in handy from the Diamond was a command code from their manual that directly displays the menu containing utilities to disable an onboard GPU.
The computer is now maxed out to its memory capacity, as well as how far I’m willing to take it with a new GPU. Next step after Ivy Bridge comes out is to upgrade the CPU, which is apparently easier now. I’m liking Hewlett-Packard still thankfully. The Pavilion p7-1155 is turning out to be exactly what I’ve been missing for several years now. My setup now also satisfies my gaming interests. Steam is awesome. I remember when it was more for a security check.
So I skipped from Half Life 2 to Deus Ex 3. What did I miss in those 5 years? I got Team Fortress 2, and Portal, both of which are OK. I think TF2 may be slightly overrated, but it has been a while since I’ve done online multiplayer, and I am a bit rusty, so maybe it’s just the fact that I get fragged almost instantly that annoys me.
So far, I’ve been able to turn everything up to highest graphic settings and have suffered no really noticeable lag. It’s unfortunate that in order to play video games on Pc you have to spend almost the equivalent of a new console system just to play the software the way it was meant to be played. It makes me wonder what the newer integrated graphics processors will be like in Ivy Bridge. From what I’ve heard, Intel and other chip makers are moving more towards integrated GPU’s that would effectively make these big clunkers obsolete.
Ivy Bridge integrated GPU’s are supposed to be some ridiculous percentage faster that current integrated GPU’s. The one that comes standard in the p7-1155 ran Deus Ex: Human Revolution on minimum settings fairly well, which surprised me, so I give it 2-3 more years for these separate huge GPU units.