VOGONS


First post, by IAmJefferson

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Introduction
Hello guys, I am usually looking for a desktop computer compatible for DOS (usually from) and Windows 95/98 era games. When I saw listings for Windows 98 gaming computers on eBay, I am usually choosy regarding the specifications. Here's the following specifications that I am considering:

  • Processor: Intel Pentium MMX 233MHz to Pentium II or an AMD K6-II+/K6-III+ or a VIA C3 (thanks clueless1 and RJDog for the recommendations)
  • 64-128MB system RAM (more RAM would be recommended up to 256MB)
  • 32GB hard drive
  • 3Dfx Voodoo 2/3 or NVidia GeForce 256 (or any graphic card that can be used for DOS games)
  • Hardware DVD/MPEG2 decoder (useful for running Tex Murphy: Overseer)
  • PCI WiFi card
  • RPC-1 DVD drive

I also saw something on my local online classifieds, which is an HP Vectra for $20.19 [₱1000] (which is suited for DOS and Windows 98 gaming). Which this desktop has a Pentium III processor and an Intel 815 graphics chip, which might not look good, but would be good for early DirectX titles and DOS games.

838960100_1_644x461.jpg?bucket=01

Last edited by IAmJefferson on 2017-06-17, 14:50. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 1 of 5, by leileilol

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With those kind of specs you might as well forget pure DOS and just go full-on Win98SE. There's really not much point to run 6.22 or earlier with 9x along with it. Save yourself the headache of both wanting an active partition. Buoting to DOS from 98se is serviceable enough

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Reply 2 of 5, by IAmJefferson

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leileilol wrote:

With those kind of specs you might as well forget pure DOS and just go full-on Win98SE. There's really not much point to run 6.22 or earlier with 9x along with it. Save yourself the headache of both wanting an active partition. Buoting to DOS from 98se is serviceable enough

For pre-DOS4GW era games (particularly games that requires a faster 286 to a slower 386SX), I would use DOSBOX for those. Or if I am lucky enough, I would use a CPU slowdown software like CPU Killer or Mo' Slow, which are both paid.

Reply 3 of 5, by chinny22

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Comparing your picture with ones on google seems to be a Vectra VL400 DT.
Doesn't look like this comes with ISA slot although there is a ISA expansion card if you really wanted one.

It still makes a great Win 9x gamming PC, and a lot of sound cards back then still had dos support as long as you played the games from within windows.
Plus its nice and small....still enough room to still get another PC for pure DOS

Reply 4 of 5, by clueless1

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A system based on K6-III+ will give you the best time span of playable games in one system (approx. 1991-2001). If you care more about DOS than Windows games, then a P233MMX will do the trick with a timespan of about 1990-1998.

A Pentium III is not very slowdown friendly, so there will be some DOS games that will run either too fast (at full speed) or too slow (with cache disabled). AMD K6-* and to a lesser extent P233MMX have lots of slowdown options between multiplier and cache manipulation to emulate speeds from 386 and 486 eras.

In my experience, slowdown software does not feel as natural as disabling caches or reducing multipliers.

edit: with that said, I agree with leileilol's advice. you won't be able to run earlier DOS games, but you should be able to run most DOS games from 1994 and later, with better Win9x performance for newer titles.

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Let's benchmark our systems with cache disabled
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Reply 5 of 5, by RJDog

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clueless1 wrote:

In my experience, slowdown software does not feel as natural as disabling caches or reducing multipliers.

Agreed, an all-in-one type system is best when you can change multipliers and caches. Indeed, the K6-2+ and K6-III+ (emphasis on the "+") are quite versatile in this regard. They are unfortunately getting more difficult to find, so perhaps a VIA C3 might be worth looking at, as I am learning now also. They fit in a Socket 370 motherboard (or, are often times found soldered right onto a "budget" board as well), and are very versatile in setting multiplier, cache, etc., even on the fly by software. The VIA C3 processors aren't a dime-a-dozen or anything like that, but I think a bit easier to find than K6-2/III+.