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Forget the console and build a gaming PC! A value comparison

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Comments

  • Cliff_ForsterCliff_Forster Baltimore, MD Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    The writer is obviously a genius of epic proportions.
  • MrTRiotMrTRiot Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    This thread has been resurrected again? Decent article but can't it die already?... :(

    a PC gaming rig now has become even cheaper AND upgrade-able. I've always felt consoles are a rip off. When they finally come down to a decent price, the next new thing comes out. When you have a half decent computer you can just upgrade it and have it competing in the upper echelons of the market...
  • kryystkryyst Ontario, Canada
    edited Jun 2011
    Where's the ripoff? You buy a console let say you are in the 24hr line-up for launch and pay the premium which is around $400. That console, no upgrades lasts you at least 5 years on average. At that end of those 5 years you buy the next generation of console. Usually they are backwards compatible unless they are changing mediums.

    Or you buy a PC for $600, then every few years you drop another $100+ into it to keep it upgraded just so you can stay up to date with the current game requirements. Because if it wasn't for games pushing requirements you'd seldom need to upgrade your PC.

    Now how is a PC the better value when it comes to gaming?
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    I guess it depends what your version of a reasonable price is, but yeah, I'm gonna go ahead and defy you to build a $200 PC that can play games at the level a console can at the same price. Judging by your "by the time they get cheap enough, the next one is coming out" line, you must be waiting until they get to the $100-$150 mark (just before the new console's released). You want to try to build a gaming PC on that?
  • fatcatfatcat Mizzou Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    a GTX 200 series (GTX 260, GTX 260 Core 216, GTX 275, GTX 280, GTX 285, GTX 295) video card still runs any game out today, and it was released in 2008.

    I can't remember the last game that made me buy a better video card.

    As far as the rest of a PC, a dual core 2.5GHz CPU and 4GB of RAM will run any game. So in reality, the only thing you ever really NEED to upgrade on a PC is the video card.
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    GTX 260 from a quick Google shows prices from $100 to $350. Not exactly saving the $200 budget there.
  • kryystkryyst Ontario, Canada
    edited Jun 2011
    One thing all these DIY computer specs seem to neglect is the OS. If you wanna gaming machine it's gotta run windows so that's $100+ right there. It's one thing if you are buying a bundle where the OS is included. But you aren't buying an off the shelf gaming rig for $600. Just not happening.
  • Cliff_ForsterCliff_Forster Baltimore, MD Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    Let me be the first to admit, some things have changed since this was written. Console prices have dropped some. On top of it, the 360 has finally become a fairly reliable piece of hardware. We are also at that magic point in the console life cycles where there are allot of really good games on the shelf for around $20, so if your content buying a console to play a few titles you missed, you can actually get a really good gaming value. Still, not sure how good the value is if your online service goes down and your credit card info is compromised, but I digress....

    Now, all this said, the PC is still much more compelling on the value side than most gamers realize. Like my prior argument, I don't think a console can really replace your PC, you still have to have one somewhere in the house. Perhaps your past using a desktop, you just use a laptop or tablet for internet access, I suppose those have gotten inexpensive enough where one could really negate the argument for desktops being the best value as an internet portal in the home. The argument has more layers than it had when this article was written.

    Today, I think I'd have a heck of a time convincing anyone that the PC is hands down the better deal. What I know I can do is show people that have not considered PC gaming because they thought it too expensive, that its not nearly as bad as they think. Factor in digital distribution, Steam sales, dropping hardware costs, no added cost to use the online UI for multi-player gaming (in most cases), plus having a piece of hardware that's customized to meet your needs outside of gaming. Lets not forget OnLive, it offers you a PC gaming experience that reduces your hardware requirement to console like prices. Of course, selection is the best argument against that. All that said, I can still make a pretty compelling argument for why people would be just as well to ditch their consoles in favor of a decent value priced gaming PC, but I will admit, the old Leo Laporte advice of "hey kid, just buy an Xbox" is more compelling now than it was at the time of writing.

    Lets just say, come the Holiday, when I can buy AAA titles for $5 a pop on Steam, I'll feel like a winner every time.

    But, to be fair, the fact that I can't play Red Dead Revolver and LA Noire is killing me inside. Console gamers win on that front.

    Having both simply is not an option for me, I have the Wii for family game time, and I have to pick an HD gaming platform for my adult game time. Today I'm still choosing PC. I may need to write an update to balance my argument for everything that has changed.
  • kryystkryyst Ontario, Canada
    edited Jun 2011
    What's it's come down to is you can get a console now for the price of a video card.
  • Cliff_ForsterCliff_Forster Baltimore, MD Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    A single Radeon 6870 will play anything you want that's currently available for under $200.
  • SnarkasmSnarkasm 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    Meanwhile, the 4GB new 360 is $200 from Best Buy, and the 250GB new 360 is $300.

    :shrug:

    6 to 5 and pick 'em, really. Depends what you like. :)
  • ErrorNullTurnipErrorNullTurnip Illinois Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    The consoles will always have the advantage of mass production and ease of use. Manufacturers can get huge breaks buying in bulk and as long as a game can run on one console, it's basically guaranteed to run on all consoles. PC's, on the other hand, have to worry about system specs and hardware conflicts. The place I see PC gaming having the edge is with customizability for power users and additional functionality such as engine mods.
  • RyanMMRyanMM Ferndale, MI Icrontian
    edited Jun 2011
    I'm a PC gamer. The last console I owned was the N64.

    That said, one would have to have their head pretty deep in the sand to not admit that consoles have a much better value proposition. They're not even close.

    I game on my PC because I can't invest in multiple platforms and I prefer the types of games that hit PC first, not because I have
    any delusions that gaming PCs are a better value.
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