Sorry for the delay in replying guys. I've been busy solidly searching computers all day (in fact all throughout the last week). So I've only just seen your very interesting replies now.
If you go the PC route, i would go for a intel cpu, and my experience is that the nvidia gfx cards of late have an egde over the amd/ati cards, atleast in the middle to high price range. That said, my AMD proved a lot of power-to-price ratio and the same goes for the amd gfxcard i had (HD7870), but in pure performance my new rig quite a bit better...
I have also been reading stuff like that too (i.e intel = better graphics in the mid to high range. Whereas AMD might perhaps be a bit better on multitasking... at least according to one post i read). However since I am looking for the best power-to-price ratio i.e. best value for money, within the lower to mid end of the market. It does seem that AMD computers are providing this much more then intel computers. At least on what I could see on Ebay. Maybe it is because as one of my earlier posts eluded to, AMD are struggling financially, which means they have had to drop their prices to increase sales...I don't know?
Anyway the amount of research into which computer to buy, was getting so excessive, it was doing my head in. So I've decided take the plunge and just buy a new system that should just about run rFactor 2 (in addition to the older sims) from Ebay. The specs are;
AMD QUAD FX4-4100 (3.6GHz) & FAN
1-0GB G640 DVi / HDMI/ VGA Gaming Graphics
Asrock N68-VS3 Motherboard
8.0g DDR3 1333mhz
500g Sata III 7200 HDD
DVDRW DL +/-
Micro ATX Case Casecom CM-431
Branded 500W PSU
All for £240 brand new. I hope it was a good deal & would be interested to hear other people's thought on this (if it is a really bad machine, I can still cancel the order...if needs be). For anyone who is interested, here's is the link to the machine & the Ebay page; http://www.ebay.co.u.....140912253513
FYI the cheapest brand new i3 intel computer I can recall seeing was around the £350 mark. As I said before, I just wanted a machine to see whether PC racing sims are for me. So committing to spending more than £250 on a PC at this stage, didn't seem a particularly good idea (i believe me I have thought about it alot...thats why my head is hurting so much). If I find PC racing sims are indeed for me (TBH that is what I am hoping...but I also am very aware of getting the best value for money from my gaming experience). Then I will look at building a top spec PC purely for sims in 2/3 years time & look forward to perhaps racing against some of you online.
Also please can anyone advise how well this machine may be able to run rFactor2? (last time I will ask this here I promise). If I can get away with above 20 FPS on low graphics, then I think that should give me a fair indication of what it would be like. Therefore whether I should get a high spec PC or a PS4 in 3 or so years time.
Based on what the original poster was asking, I did not get the impresion he was going to go down the route of spending huge amounts of cash for the most accurate PC based simulation. Instead he was curious to what sims could offer in relation to his enjoyment of GT5 and F1 2012 and would a budget PC satisfy his curiosity of titles such as Rfactor.
Thanks so much for understanding my dilemma.
Regarding if your next pc is ready or not for rFactor 2... I am slowly starting to believe that computer graphics (speed) is as difficult as fluid dynamics... Pc's (even Macs) are so idiotic complex that even pretty straight calculations (processorspeed, work-memory, RAM, ladieladielaladialadaaa) can give you big, big suprises.
It is simply ridiculous how complicated it all is. That's kind of why I just got fed up with it all in the end & just when for something. I don't even remember any project from my final year at Uni...being as complexed as having to research into which processors, clock speed, graphics cards etc provide the best value for money. Then there is the added complication that a quad core 4.0GHz machine by intel is not the same as a quad core 4.0GHz machine from AMD etc. I'm sure if things weren't quite as complicated more people would buy more PCs & perhaps people in my current situation would be more likely to get into PC sim racing & modding, thus making it even better as a result.
as for the A4 3300, this is a really basic CPU (AMD calls it APU, it has integrated graphics), it's not really suitable for gaming (even if you go with the fastest CPU from the same family the 3870K, it's a massive improvement, but still slower than a $50 graphics card)
you can play rfactor and others, but it's far from ideal, both the CPU and Video performance is really low, and the experience with a more demanding game like f1 2012 will be pretty bad...
as for recommending something, are you building a PC, or buying a built system?
I would recommend visiting some guides like this
but if you are set on going lower, the 7700 series seems good for graphics card, or if you wan't the AMD "APU" route their newer a10 5800k is a lot faster than the A4 you are looking.
Brought a built system. Please see the specs above & would be most interested in your thoughts on it. Thanks also for the links. I shall check to see how my new machine matches p & whether in fact there is a better value machine for rFactor 1 & 2 around the £250 mark currently. BTW I'm not looking to race F1 2012 or too many new games on it...it just need to test rfactor 2 sufficiently enough to decide if PC sims are for me in the future.
Yeah, of course the GTX680 is alot more expensive and should be quite a bit quicker, same with the cpu, but i just told my own experience with Rfactor2 where i just didn't get it to run smoothly with the amd cpu and amd/ati gfxcard combination i had.
I thought Rfactor2 did use more than one core though, but if that is the case, then i can see the intel being a better choice. Even a much lower spec intel would probably be faster than the amd 1100t on a single core, as the amd 1100t's redeeming point was it being a very cheap 6 core cpu and not its single core performance
Thanks for sharing your AMD CPU experience with me I do appreciate it. Are you able to comment on whether your old AMD is better or worse then the computer I have just purchased. Therefore am I likely to see more or less stuttering than you experienced. Also I did have the option of getting a GT 650 graphics card for £40 more. Do you think it would be worth it (FYI I did briefly look into it...but I was so tied of comparing computer bits by that stage, I just though I'd leave it).
Apologies for the long post. However it might take a month or two, before I get rFactor1 or 2 up & running on my new machine. So once I have experienced it...I will post my thoughts here, so that anyone in a similar position to me currently are better able to decide for themselves whether they would prefer consoles or PC racing games / sims.
Also being born & bred on consoles & shall still be keeping a very close eye on the developments of the next gen consoles & particularly the new racing games / sims for them. Of course I shall be posting my finding here also.
THanks once again to all those who have been kind enough to help me & hopefully be seeing you lot in my rear view mirror, sometime soon online.;)
Edited by Ibsey, 06 February 2013 - 20:36.