First post, by Uroshnor
Hi all! I’m thinking about building a retro gaming PC, but there are a few things I’m unclear on, and I’m hoping you can help.
My primary focus with this rig would be compatibility with as many Win95/98/XP games as possible - ideally, I’d like to be able to play any Windows game released between 1995 and 2006.
Some degree of DOS compatibility would be nice as well, but that’s very much a secondary concern (I’m fine with using DOSBox when necessary).
I’d prefer to go with a microATX motherboard (or smaller) if possible, since I live in a fairly small apartment and space is at a premium.
From what I’ve been able to gather, it looks like my best bet might be to go with a socket 775 Pentium 4, and a motherboard with an 865G chipset. Specific motherboards I’ve been looking at include the Asus P5PE-VM, Asus P5P800-VM, Gigabyte GA-8I865GME-775-RH, and AsRock 775i65g.
So, here are my questions:
1. Are there any potential compatibility issues I’d be facing by using a socket 775 CPU rather than socket 478, assuming that the chipset is the same? From what I can tell, it seems like the chipset is the important part for compatibility, rather than the socket, but I’d like to get confirmation on that before I buy anything.
2. If I can get my hands on an 865G chipset motherboard that’s compatible with Core 2 CPUs, is there any reason not to use a Core 2 instead of a Pentium 4? Could that break compatibility with any older games?
3. I’ve been looking at GeForce 6800-series GPUs (preferably Ultra or GT), since I’m told those are the most powerful GPUs with Win98 driver support. Any reason I might want to consider another GPU instead?
4. Would a Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS be the ideal sound card for this rig? I see both that and the Aureal Vortex 2 recommended pretty often for non-ISA builds. My understanding, though, is that the Vortex 2 has better DOS compatibility but worse WinXP compatibility. Is that accurate? And are there any other sound cards I should be looking at?
5. I’ve been planning on building this in a modern microATX case. Is there any reason I might need to use a vintage one instead?
Any advice you can give would be most appreciated. Thanks!