New PC search - questions... help?
#1 18-08-2019 
*sigh* OK. The time has come to buy our daughter a new PC...

There are a few ready-made models that she can get (she has a special needs scholarship program that will buy them - so our selection is limited to what they approve of) She likes playing the Sims 2, but if she can't do that any more that's OK too. She needs a PC that can grow with her 3D modeling/Blender/Sculptris and animation talents. (No. We're not going to a Mac at this time.) We don't know if she'll pursue animation in college and work in the industry or not - but, that is kinda what she's interested in. She is 15, and in 8th/9th grade now (homeschooled).

So... with that little bit of background, here are 3 machines that are on the possibilities list: (I just like the 'look' of this one!) Blush

If any of them are possible to do Sims 2 - then that would make the deal! (But, I doubt it...)

There are others on the list too... is intel i5 better than AMD Ryzen? ...or is there a different chip I should be looking for?
The list also includes a few HP/OMENs and Pavilions, Dell/Inspirons, Lenovo, and even an Alienware... I'm sooooo confuzzled!
The last computer I actually researched and bought (as opposed to inherited after a years use) was back in 2008. A lot has changed since then!
I really appreciate any insight you computer gurus can give me (Yes, I'm looking at you - BO and Kunder!)

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#2 18-08-2019 
What's your budget?

#3 19-08-2019 
Budget doesn't figure into it... we have to chose from PCs that are on the list. The scholarship fund pays for it. But, I want to be sure and get the best for what she needs.

#4 20-08-2019 
CyberPower is a pretty good budget machine. Not likely going to be able to play Sims 2 on any of them. She may want to consider going to The Sims 3. Smile

Any of these would work, however the Ryzen7 with the RTX 2070 video, at 8gb/VRAM would be my choice.

Are there any laptops on the list? For doing what she wants to be doing, an nVidia Quadro series video chipset would be better than the RTX/GTX/GeForce video card. The Quadro is designed specifically for rendering 3D/Animation, etc. Not quite as good for gaming, but it looks like gaming isn't a priority here.

I want your daughter to have the best "Bang for your Buck" here. I'm ALWAYS up for helping kids.
(This post was last modified: 20-08-2019 02:01 PM by Kunder.)

#5 20-08-2019 
Is the nVidia Quadro series video chipset only on laptops? For some reason I have it in my head that desktops are sturdier (therefore better) than laptops? Don't laptops have overheating problems? And what about peripheries for laptops - CD/DVDs, external drives, etc...

Yes, "Bang for Buck" is what we're looking for here... monies leftover in the fund can be put to college tuition. So, even though money isn't a big concern, we don't want to waste it.

I wish you could look at the catalog and help narrow down our choices, but I doubt you can get into it. Here is the link, just in case:

Here's a few more on the list:

...looks like the only one with a CD/DVD drive is the Alienware? Do most PCs not come with them built-in anymore? I'd rather if it was. (Though, right now she's using an ancient external player because her built-in one broke.)
...also, she doesn't really need bluetooth right now as we don't have anything that uses it. But, I can see her needing it in the future (But, by then, this machine will probably be obsolete...)

I need a cuppa tea...

Thank you for your suggestions Wink
(This post was last modified: 20-08-2019 08:15 PM by CatherineTCJD.)

#6 21-08-2019 

Yes, you CAN get a Quadro video card for your desktop, but they're crazy expensive. The reason why, is because they're designed for Engineers, CAD, and 3D rendering. Not gaming, and tend to be much better in quality than gaming cards. However, you can STILL play some good, quality games on them JUST as well as a gaming card. My laptop (ThinkPad, W540) has the nVidia Quadro K2100m video chipset, and I run Windows 7Pro. It's the best machine I've ever seen, for running The Sims 2. I can also play Crysis III, Final Fantasy XIII-2, and Skyrim, all on the highest settings, as smooth as glass. I also run Adobe Photoshop, 3D Desktop, and AutoCAD 2015, as smooth as glass.

IMHO, the Alienware in your post is a good computer, if you don't mind paying for it, and would suit your needs. Upgradeable, and reliable. Out of all your options, THIS is the one I'd get for my own personal use. Dell, has excellent tech support.

Stay AWAY from HP. Tech support is terrible, and I've had quite a few where the Motherboard went out.
My wife likes the budget, HP touchscreen laptops (HP15), and if I were to get any HP for some reason, that would be the ONLY one I'd consider. ONLY because I'm my own "Tech support", and the HP 15 Pavilion touchscreens have served my wife well. I have yet to do anything but a good clean up on her budget HP, to keep it running top notch. However, the older ones, had the build quality of a Yugo.


These are good options for pre-built desktop systems.

I wouldn't worry about a DVD drive. Use an external one (USB 3.0). They'll run you around $20 on Ebay, and they don't take up a drive bay.
(This post was last modified: 22-08-2019 12:33 AM by Kunder.)

#7 22-08-2019 
Thanks for the input. Heart I've always wanted to own an Alienware... to bad it's not green (heh heh heh!)

#8 23-08-2019 
You're welcome. Smile

Alienware isn't a bad machine at all, just a little pricey.


Sorry, that is a members only option