Originally Posted by JD_May
^Thanks man. What should I be looking for as stats for ram? Like DDR3 is a good thing to know, but I have this vague idea that there is another standard attached to ram relating to quality vs cheap stuff.
Check, radeon 5770 noted. Anything else I should consider besides ATI cards or have they and Nvidia pretty much cornered the market at this point?
I am looking to spend hopefully less than 1k on the TV portion of this little venture. I'm not completely averse to breaking that if I think the value for the extra money is there. If I could do it for $800 + the desktop I'd be pretty satisfied. K, so 120hz minimum, maybe 240hz (though I'm betting that right there will cost me ~200 bucks). What is a "good" contrast ratio? Because some of these things go up to 4 million : 1 and some are in the several-hundred-thousand to one range.
Definitely need HDMI out, and probably need to make sure whatever TV I get has more than one HDMI port because I might want to hook up a couple of things. What do you mean by graphics are important to keep up the refresh rate? A good graphics card is necessary for that, you mean?
It sounds like I might want to go plasma from what I'm reading, to get a better contrast ratio and pay somewhat less for the same size screen. Any good reason to avoid it? Seems like the downside is lifespan but if I have to upgrade in a few years, I might want to do that anyway if 3d technology has come along by then.
If you're looking at a TV for less then 1k, it is going to be an 120 hz TV. There is nothing wrong with plasma, I just have never been a big fan of it. Seems too fussy to me. In my opinion, the only reason to buy plasma is at the top top end (see Pioneer Elite) where an LCD just can't match. Again, that's my opinion, there are plenty of people that swear by plasma too. It is impossible to define a "good" contrast ratio due to the fact that most of these companies make it up. My LED TV is stated to have an 8 million:1 contrast ratio, but yet the LCD in my basement is a 1000:1 contrast ratio. The LED is better... but 8000 times better? I don't think so. Samsung is the biggest infringer on this bullshit contrast ratio stuff, but yet their TVs do have high contrast ratios. It is all very convoluted... so there is really not good answer on that one. By the way, look to get a Samsung or Sony TV, in my experience they are simply at a higher level then most of the other brands. Sharp is nice too, at a bit lower pricepoint. If you do go Plasma, Panasonic makes a very nice TV as well.
I don't even know if anyone makes graphics chipsets other then ATi and nVidia. But keep in mind that in most cases they won't be the ones manufacturing the cards. They simply make the chipsets, and other companies manufacture them. PNY, and BFX are good graphics chip manufacturers that I have used before. Diamond makes some nice chips as well. I had bad luck with Galaxy before, but I do know people that swear by them so who knows. My knowledge of chip makers is slightly limited, someone else might know more.
What I mean by the refresh rate part is just that you shouldn't expect amazing gaming performance on a screen that big. It will be playable, but if you are looking for massive framerates, you probably need a PC monitor. I think it will be fine for more casual gaming though, as long as you get a good enough graphics card (5770 would be considered "good enough"). Oh and while I'm at it, don't get ripped off when you buy HDMI cables. Monster cables can run $100 to $140, don't let yourself do that. Monoprice cables are dirt cheap online (like $5), and if you have a fry's electronics near you, you can easily pick up some cheap cables there. Don't walk into a best buy and get a cable, you will be mercilessly ripped off. And don't buy into any crap that some cables are better then others, they aren't. Digital signal doesn't have quality. It is either all on or all off.
I don't know a ton about the differences in RAM quality. I usually just stick with reputable brands like Kingston and PNY, and that has always been fine for me