Articles tagged with: gaming

400$ gaming computer build (2014)

The other day, a friend of mine asked me if I could help him build a gaming computer for 400$ or less. Since I loved the idea, I decided to post my final build on this website.

Note: This build does not include an operating system (over a hundred dollars for Windows, free for most Linux distributions) nor does it include a screen, mouse or keyboard. This is only the tower.

Disclaimer: If you try to build this computer and screw something up, we are not to be held responsible. If you’re inexperienced with building computers, look up some tutorials first!

Anyway, enough talking :P, here’s the build:

PartsLinkPrice
CaseNZXT Source 210 S210-001 Computer Case40$
MotherboardASRock FM2A78M-HD+ FM2+ / FM2 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX AMD Motherboard55$
Optical driveASUS 24X DVD Burner - Black SATA Model - OEM20$
Power SupplyEVGA 500W ATX12V / EPS12V 80 PLUS Certified Power Supply45$
Processor/Video CardAMD A10-6800K Richland 4.1GHz Radeon HD 8670D Quad Core APU120$
RAMG.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory 50$
StorageWestern Digital WD Blue 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - OEM60$
Subtotal390$

Keep in mind that, with taxes and shipping, the price will be slightly above 400$

Why I chose these parts:

Case:

The NZXT Source 210 S210-001 is a pretty basic case (which is what we would expect for 40$). I chose it because it was inexpensive yet offered all the basic options we could want for a 400-500$ Gaming PC. It supports both Micro ATX and ATX motherboards, has an impressive total of 8 Internal 3.5″ Drive Bays and supports 6 fans (1 included with the case) for good airflow. The case is also quite roomy and feels sturdy. It’s biggest drawback is the fact that it looks like something out of the nineties… it’s just plain ugly in my opinion. Nonetheless, for the price, it’s a great case.

Motherboard:

The motherboard is pretty much the most important part of a computer, so you want something good. The ASRock FM2A78M-HD+ is perfect for our budget. It’s inexpensive (55$), supports FM2 and FM2+ APUs (which is necessary for our processor) and has 6 SATA slots. It even supports USB 3.0! What I didn’t like about this board is the fact that there are just 2 memory slots, but for this price, we can’t ask for more.

Optical Drive:

There’s not much to say here, the ASUS 24X DVD Burner is just a standard DVD drive, which is all we’ll need for this computer. If you ever wish to turn this build into a HTPC (Home theater PC), then you can switch this drive for a BLU-ray one, but this is unnecessary for gaming.

Power Supply:

This computer is not particularly power hungry, so the 500W EVGA power supply will be more than enough. This model is reliable, inexpensive and relatively efficient with it’s 80 PLUS rating. Also, if you ever wish to upgrade this computer, then the EVGA 100-W1-500-KR should still be able to pump out enough power.

CPU/Video card:

Had we had a bigger budget, I definitely wouldn’t have chosen an AMD APU for this computer. Unfortunately though, there’s not much we can do with 400$. This being said, the A10-6800K is surprisingly powerful. It boasts an impressive 4.1GHz quad-core processor and a reasonable Radeon HD 8670D GPU. Furthermore, this unit has an unlocked multiplier, so it’s easy to overclock. This being said, If you have a higher budget, I recommend that you replace this APU with a CPU+Video card combo. You’ll get much better performance with something like a Radeon HD7770 and an Intel Core i3-4130. Keep in mind though that, if you decide to use a different processor/GPU combo, you’ll also need a different motherboard!

RAM:

You really can’t get less than 4 Gigabytes of RAM nowadays. This being said, gaming doesn’t usually require that much memory (unless you’re running a 150 slot Minecraft server ;)). These two G.SKILL Ripjaws units should be enough for most games. It’s good quality ram that runs at 1600 MHz and comes with a nice heatsink. All-in-all, it’s just about perfect for this build.

Storage:

With games getting constantly bigger, you’ll need lots of hard drive space. This Western Digital Blue drive offers a respectable 1TB of disk space at a reasonable price. It also has pretty good read/write speeds, although if you really want speed, go for an SSD. If you feel like 1TB isn’t enough, you can always buy two of these drives.

Conclusion:

This article shows that, even with a very tight budget, you can still get decent performance. This 400$ gaming computer build will be able to play most games at reasonable settings. If you think you could get better performance by using different parts, feel free to let us know in the comment section down below!

Also, keep in mind that you’re probably better off spending 500-600$ on your computer. You’ll get much better performance than this build for just a slight increase in price.

I hope you enjoyed this article and, as always, have a nice day!

-Icosebyte

How to easily remove a forest in Minecraft

 

I can’t count how often this has happened to me: I want to build an epic city in Minecraft, but I first have to clear a huge forest. The small trees aren’t so bad to cut, but the large ones are… well, you know…

So, is there an easy way to clear a forest in Minecraft? In survival, unfortunately not. BUT, if you’re willing to use third-party tools, there are two easy methods to get rid of those pesky trees.

Using a world editing plugin (WorldEdit or VoxelSniper):

This is my favourite way to quickly get rid of forests, but it only works if you host your world on a CraftBukkit server. The first thing you’ll need to do is to install WorldEdit or VoxelSniper, then, use these commands:

For WorldEdit:

Type //brush <brush type> air <brush size>

Per example: //brush sphere air 5

Then, type //mask leaves

What this does is create a spherical brush that replaces every “leaves” bloc with air.

You can now spam right-click around the area you wish to clear to remove all the leaves:

Removing leaves with WorldEdit

Now, all that’s left to do is to remove those pesky logs. Type //mask log and spam right-click once more:

Remove-logs-worldedit

 

For VoxelSniper:

Removing trees with VoxelSniper is similar to removing trees with WorldEdit, but the commands differ.

You first need to type /v air, then /b b mm.

You then need to select a brush size by typing /b <size> (per example, /b 10)

Finally, type /vr leaves

Now, put an arrow in your hand and spam right-click over the area to clear:

Remove leaves with voxelsniper

Once you’re done removing the leaves, type /vr log and right-click over the area to clear:

Remove logs with voxelsniper

 

So that’s how you remove forests with world-editing plugins. Now, this method is nice and simple, but it doesn’t work if you don’t have a Craftbukkit server. If this is the case, then you might want to consider the second method.

 

Using MCEdit:

MCEdit is a superb Minecraft world editor. It allows you to move around parts of the map, create structures and more. Here, I will show you how you can clear all the trees in an area with this program.

 

First off, load the world by clicking on “Open a level…” and then navigating to your world’s “level.dat” file.

You then need to select the region that you want to clear:

Select part of the map - MCEdit

 

Then, click on “Fill and Replace”, then on “Ok”, then on “Replace”.

Under the “Find” option, select leaves, and under the “Replace with” option, select air. Once this is done, click replace.

This should remove all the leaves in the selected area (Keep in mind that you might need to do this for all the different types of leaves in the area). You now need to remove the logs.

To remove the logs, repeat the steps above, but under the “Find” option, select Wood instead of Leaves, then click replace (Once more, keep in mind that you might need to repeat this process for all the types of wood in the area).

area-cleared-mcedit

When you’re satisfied with the result, save the map (Ctrl+S) and close MCEdit!

 

So that concludes this article, I hope you enjoyed it!

-Icosebyte

How to install custom League of Legends maps

I think we all agree that the stock League of Legends maps are pretty cool. Nonetheless, wouldn’t it be nice to have a bit more variety? Perhaps a winter version of Summoner’s Rift?

Fortunately, the LoL community has come up with a marvellous program that allows just that! In this article, I will show you the steps you need to follow in order to install these so-called “map skins”.

 

Step one – Downloading “Skin Installer Ultimate”:

First and foremost, we need this nice little program. “Skin Installer Ultimate” is the program that will allow you to easily mod your LoL installation in order to install whichever skin you like. To download the program, go to this link: https://sites.google.com/site/siuupdates/ and click on “Download Version x.xxx Now!”

This will download a *.zip file containing the program. Extract the contents of this file to a folder of your choice and open this folder:

This is a screenshot of the folder in which has been extracted the contents of the downloaded *.zip file

Now, click on “Skin Installer Ultimate.exe” to start the program, which looks like this:

This is a screenshot of the screen that appears when we start "Skin Installer Ultimate"

Great, now we need to download a new map!

 

Step two – Choosing a map skin:

Choosing a skin is the hard part ;) there are so many awesome ones out there! Those I would recommend you try are Beach Rift and Snow Rift (both from Yurixy: http://yurixyworks.com/category/game-mods/league-of-legends/summoner-rift/).

For the purpose of this tutorial, I will be installing Snow Rift, which can be downloaded at the page below: http://yurixyworks.com/2013/06/24/snow-rift/

Scroll down to “Download” and select the version you want.

Once the download is finished, go back to Skin Installer Ultimate and click on “Add Files”:

This screenshot shows how to add the newly downloaded map in SIU

Then browse to the map you’ve downloaded, and select it:

This screenshot shows how to select the downloaded map with the siu file browser

Now, wait a few seconds for the file to load, the click the “Add to DataBase” Button. Enter a meaningful name in the text box that appears, and click ok.

This screenshot shows hwo to add the newly imported skin to the SIU DataBase

Finally, go to the “==Install Existing Skin==” Tab, select the check box that corresponds to the skin we’ve just added, and click “Install”:

This screenshot shows how to install the skin once it has been imported to the database

You will be shown an “Install Preferences” windows. Check the options you want, then click save. You’ll now have another window, this time for the “Skin Character Selection Options”. Select the options you want and click “Done”.

Wait for several seconds (can even go up to a few minutes), and you should now be prompted with an “Install Complete” message!

This screenshot shows the SIU prompt that confirms that the skin has been installed correctly

That’s how you can install custom League of Legends maps! You can now start LoL and enjoy your new Summoner’s Rift!

A picture I took of my Summoner's Rift with Snow Rift installed

Thanks for reading!
-Icosebyte