Here's my salvage:
From the 2001 Dell Dimension I pulled:
- This OEM motherboard - it's huge. It's a 423 Socket 1st Gen Pentium 4 that uses RDRAM. I remember that when we had bought more memory it was a much costlier upgrade for this reason -- and they didn't have much in stock.
- 512MB RDRAM (x2 256 modules)
- Visiontek Geforce 3 (this card and the RAM upgrade was for Anarchy Online!)
- Soundblaster Live! CT4780
- Pentium 4 1.5/256/400/1.7V -- I have a heatsink for it, but no fan.
I'm also really curious as to what this slot and card are for that were on the motherboard?
I've also found a box with an MSI G4 Ti4200.
From the 2003 Alienware I pulled:
- Intel D875PBZ 478B Motherboard 875P
- Pentium 4 3.20GHZ/215/800
- Geforce FX 5900 Ultra from BFG
- 1GB DDR PC3200 (x2 512MB modules)
- Sound Blaster Audigy 2 with a connector/plate for Midi/Joystick. My cousin has an Audigy 2 ZS I can use as well, I haven't looked into the differences between the two.
I also pulled an IDE DVD and CD drive by NEC and anotherIDE CD from Lite-On. No workable hard drives and I tossed both PSUs as I knew for sure one of them was no good and I'd rather use something new. A zip disk drive (...hahah) and an ATECH USB 2.0 flash ...bay? Has SM, MS, CF/MD and SD/MMC slots.. connects to the motherboard USB header I think (5 pin).
My 2006 build which is just missing a GPU is:
- ASUS A8N32 SLI Deluxe motherboard -- I think every system I've built since has had an SLI motherboard and I've never done SLI.. maybe for one of these builds?
- Athlon 64 4000+ San Diego Core -- I remember being so confused as to how this 2.4ghz CPU was an upgrade from my 3.2ghz Pentium 4.
- SeaSonic S12-600 600W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready Active PFC Power Supply
- IDE Plextor 16X DVD/R
- OCZ Platinum 2GB (2 x 1GB) 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200)
- Western Digital Caviar Se16 WD200KS 250GB 7200RPM 1Mb Cache Sata 3.0GB/s
This system went through a 7900GT and 8800GTS that sadly both failed. I blame my LianLi 'quiet' case which, while very quiet with some foam padding on one of the panel doors, had the most awful ventilation of any case ever.
Ok! So my build goal is probably for 3 machines:
1) A system with maximum performance and compatibility with Windows XP games.
2) Another for maximum performance/compatibility with Windows 98 games.
3) One for maximum performance/compatibility with DOS to early Windows. With no interest in anything pre-386 this is going to basically be built after Phil's 4 in 1 machine.
The first one I'll be doing is
So far I've got a hold of.. […]
So far I've got a hold of..
+ AOpen59Pro motherboard that came with 2 different types of 64MB ram modules (huh? ... could you mix/match different ram kits back then?) and an AMD K6-2/300AFR 2.2V chip. I'm hoping the motherboard is good as it has some plastic missing from one of the IDE slots (pins look fine) and one of the clips on the ram slots is gone... I'll be happy if it works though since I payed very little for it and unlike the CPUs the Super Socket 7 mobos seem to be quite expensive, unfortunately.
+ NEW! AMD K6-2+/500ACR 2.0v
+ AMD K6-III+/400ATZ 1.6v
+ A-Tech 128MB SD Stick PC133
+ Voodoo 3 2000 AGP
I'm not sure if I should use the 2+ 500mhz or the III+ 400mhz. I believe the K2+ had noticably better benchmarking in Phil's K6 Comparison video but he did use the lower clocked III+ in his flex build. I'm assuming they both function exactly the same with 386/486 games when lowering multiplier and disabling cache. Though the III+ has 256 KiB L2-Cache and the 2+ has 128.
Since I'll be doing another build aimed at Win98 w/1600x1200 I was wondering if I should do maybe Win95 on this Flex-DOS machine instead of 98? I imagine there are probably Windows 95 games that prefer being on their native OS rather than 98SE?
I'm thinking I will probably do IDE to SD Card as a hard drive for the ease of being able to pop it out and add or remove games from my main PC -- that might also eliminate the need for a floppy emulator... or no? It also seems pretty cheap. If I use a separate IDE channel on the motherboard I shouldn't have issues with the optical drive? I'll need to use one of those drives for CD Audio tracks. Which leads me to sound cards..
I actually own an SC-55 and I've been using it with DOSBox... MT-32s or really CM32Ls are unobtainable price wise now - as are the cards needed to connect them -- so I will probably just continue using MUNT...but combined with SoftMPU. Is SoftMPU needed for Sound Canvas as well or just LA Synth?
I'll need an ISA card - or cards? This gets pretty confusing. I've read several threads here including this one Perfect ISA soundcard, in theory. I'll be using my Sound Canvas or MUNT for games that have Midi or LA but I'd still like something that has good compatibility for games that don't use it as well as for sound effects/speech? Since I never had a PC from this era I am probably not going to care about 100% authentic OPL vs emulated or clones. I do want the sound effects and FM Synth to be of good quality though for games that must use FM. Do I need two different ISA cards to cover 386 to early windows compatibility? From what I've read it doesn't sound like multiple ISA soundcards play well together anyway. Also a SB Pro 2 would mean having to buy an older PSU? Something I would like to avoid doing.
For PCI for Win95 games should I just use my CT4780 or should I go for something better? I don't think there was any A3D or EAX then.
As far as the PSU goes I was thinking I would just use one that came with a cheap case -- acceptable for such a machine or a mistake?
For build #2 (Windows 98)
I was originally thinking that my AMD 64 4000+ would be the perfect CPU to handle any game from that era (single core.. although […]
I was originally thinking that my AMD 64 4000+ would be the perfect CPU to handle any game from that era (single core.. although it does have HT) and also that it - or any socket 939 - would not be enough to max out the most demanding XP end like Crysis...right? Unfortunately, that ASUS SLI motherboard only has PCI-E slots, no AGP.
I'm not sure if it would be worth it to buy another socket 939 motherboard with AGP when I could just use the 478 socket board with Pentium 4 3.2ghz and still get more than enough performance for anything on Win98.
In either case, I plan to use my 5900 Ultra for that build (with nGlide for compatible games). From what I've read here this conveniently seems to be the most powerful card that still has total compatibility with Win98.
I was thinking I'd use one of the Audigy 2 cards in this build, and the other in the XP machine. I would also like A3D though I don't know what Aureal Vortex 2 card to get or if there are certain ones to stay away from. Also could an Aureal and Creative card coexist ... disabling one or the other in control panel depending on the game?
Finally Build #1 (XP)
Aside from using one of the Audigy 2s I'm not sure what to look for here. The AMD 64 4000+ was my XP machine but really don't think that socket 939 is going to stand up to something like Crysis.
As for GPUs I've seen that the GTX 285 is a solid choice for XP without compatibility issues but also I've read a few posts with up to the 560 Ti working just fine as well. Also, are there games from 2007-2008 greatly benefit from 2GB VRAM cards over 1GB?
Thanks in advance for your thoughts!