Yep, the reason is for a game.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I’m a dedicated Mac user. From my Mac Pro at the office to the iMac at home and the MacBook Air in between, I am pretty integrated with OS X. However, I always give Windows a chance every once in a while and recently, I started thinking about building a Windows powered PC.
The idea triggered because of two things. First, our components guru Taimoor is currently testing graphics cards using a three monitor setup and I must say that the games he showed me running on three monitors looked pretty amazing. Second, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is coming up at the end of the year and sadly, it’s not being released on the Mac.
The new system will replace my aging iMac at home though I’m not sure how the wife and kids will react as they use the iMac on a daily basis as well. Hopefully the three monitor support will be distracting enough for them to accept the change. So with three monitors in the picture, it was time to decide the hardware that would power it.
Obviously I would need a heavy duty system and I figured I’d start with the new Core i7 2600K Sandy Bridge CPU as well as a P67 Motherboard, of which, we have a few sitting in the office- the MSI Big Bang Marshall is looking pretty good. But I’m not necessarily a fan of huge casings so I might go for a micro ATX motherboard and a smaller form factor. I’ll probably add 8GB of RAM to the system considering how cheap RAM is.
On the graphics side, I’m still not convinced on a dual card setup so my choices were between something based on the NVIDIA GTX590 or the AMD HD6990. However, the AMD solution is insanely noisy and being a Mac user I prefer to keep things as silent as possible so the GTX590 will probably be it.
Lastly, for storage, I will be mixing things with Windows and applications on an SSD for fast bootup and app launching, games on a 300GB Raptor for fast loading and higher storage and finally data on a mirrored drive- probably the WD Black edition with 2TB capacity. For the optical drive, I’ll get a Bluray with DVD writing.
I know that will be a resonably powerful and fast enough system to play Skyrim. I just hope its good enough to make me stay on Windows and not plug my iMac back after a month.