My current desktop computer, the venerable Kaleidoscope, hails from early 2004, and is certainly showing its age. Apart from an occasional GPU crash and sticky mouse wheel, it also just isn’t holding its own in gaming anymore. Although computer games are a much smaller part of my life now than they were several years ago, I still enjoy the occasional LAN party, game of CS or TF2, and for a while I’ve wanted to experience Supreme Commander as it was meant to be.
So today, with the help of Theo and further consultation with Shai, I made the fateful leap. Aiming for instant gratification, I hit up Fry’s in Renton, where the prices were not the lowest available, but they were not far off and everything was in stock. The components I ended up purchasing (after many trips to the internet-connected computers to check newegg and pricewatch to avoid serious pricing anomalies) is as follows:
Antec Nine Hundred case
Gigabyte GA-EP35-DS3R Motherboard (Intel P35 chipset)
Intel Core 2 Duo e8400 (3.0 GHz, 1333 MHz FSB, 45nm)
XFX 8800 GTS Video Card (512MB, PCI-E 2.0)
2x Patriot 2gb DDR2 6400 800MHz DIMMs
To round it all out, I got a modular power supply, the Antec NeoHE 550W Power Supply. Too bad this last piece of hardware was completely and craptastically broken out-of-the-box.
One of the most disappointing moments in the life of a technology enthusiast is that moment when, after assembling the brand new system, he pushes the power button and… nothing… at… all… happens.
Of course the initial fears are the motherboard, but we pretty quickly determined emphatically that the power supply was to blame. It appears to be completely dead on arrival, outputting no voltage and refusing to turn on at all. Pretty anti-climatic way to end a computer-building session, but what can you do? Other than write a blog post complaining about Antec’s crappy Q.A., of course.