The TR Hardware Survey 2014: What’s inside your main desktop PC?

If you’ve been on TR for long enough, you probably remember our hardware surveys. Our first one went up way back in 2008, and we did another one in early 2011. In both instances, the concept was simple: ask our readers a whole bunch of questions about their PCs, let the answers pile up, and then dissect and analyze the data. The results were always enlighteningโ€”and sometimes surprising.

So, we thought we’d go for another round.

We’ve had to update our questions since last time, obviously. It’s not just that new generations of products have come outโ€”we’ve also witnessed the death and birth of entire companies and product categories. Solid-state drives weren’t even a blip on the radar last time, for example, and there’s been a fair amount of consolidation in motherboards and chipsets, too. Heck, even optical storage is on its way out these days.

To participate in the survey, simply scroll down to the questions below, and fill us in on what’s inside (and, if applicable, outside) your primary desktop PC. Remember to click the “vote” button under each set of options after answering. You should see the results appear right away. Good luck, and thanks in advance for participating!

Comments closed
    • Peter.Parker
    • 5 years ago

    I see a lot of bad comments about multiple monitor setup. “They look ugly”.
    Why don’t we make a contest of pictures with our multiple monitor setups, to prove they can look great, while increasing productivity. You know the expression: “picture or it didn’t happen”. Well, now it’s time for “picture”!
    Upvote this comment if you agree!
    I would post a picture but I don’t have one handy. I’ll edit this post later to include a link.

    EDIT:
    Here is my pic:
    [url<]http://postimg.org/image/4q4xc8h43/[/url<]

    • jokinin
    • 5 years ago

    I see, my 2012 build is still rather common hardware (i5 3550, 16GB , radeon HD7870, 250GB SSD, 2TB HDD).
    Maybe this is because progress in the CPU front, has been rather slow, I’m just one generation behind the newest, and a 2 year old CPU is plenty powerful to run everything you need, including demanding games.
    I think some more years will pass before I feel the need for an upgrade.

    • jokinin
    • 5 years ago

    I see, my 2012 build is still rather common hardware (i5 3550, 16GB , radeon HD7870, 250GB SSD, 2TB HDD).
    Maybe this is because progress in the CPU front, has been rather slow, I’m just one generation behind the newest, and a 2 year old CPU is plenty powerful to run everything you need, including demanding games.
    I think some more years will pass before I feel the need for an upgrade.

    • barich
    • 5 years ago

    No 1600×1200 option for my ancient Dell 2001FP? I don’t think I’ll replace it until I can get a 4K 120Hz IPS display at a reasonable price. Any display with similarly sized pixels to this one isn’t a sufficient upgrade.

    Plus, at $750 for this, I’m only recently starting to think I got my money’s worth.

    • anotherengineer
    • 5 years ago

    No vote for dust bunnies or cobwebs?

    That internet connection is kind of ugly, I thought 20 Mbps was bottom tier, guess I was wrong with a big chunk at 10Mbps and less!!

      • BIF
      • 5 years ago

      Internet in the US is terrible because our laws prohibit monopolies.

      er…yeah.

    • JuniperLE
    • 5 years ago

    Interesting, I’m impressed by how small percentage have similar hardware to mine ,

    the resolution option, it’s a shame you guys didn’t add 1280×1024, it was the standard in 2004-2008, and it’s what I’m still using,

    • FuturePastNow
    • 5 years ago

    Edited to remove double post.

    • FuturePastNow
    • 5 years ago

    Still running the old Phenom II X4 here. I’ve made a few upgrades over the years . Decent graphics card, SSD, USB 3.0 card, Blu-ray drive, quieter HSF, more RAM. And probably more I’ve forgotten.

    • Shinare
    • 5 years ago

    Core 2 Duo (Conroe) would have been a nice choice for me. ๐Ÿ™‚ Still humming along quite competently.

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 5 years ago

    Here is the tip of the iceberg:

    [url<]http://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-speakers/1344283-logitech-z906-can-handle-other-speakers.html[/url<] If you like PC audio at all please take a trip down the rabbit hole and learn about incorporating home theater audio into your PC... it will blow your mind.

      • kamikaziechameleon
      • 5 years ago

      Amazed by the rather odd approach to audio on this site. It baffles my mind. We talk about audio and sound cards and proprietary PC stuff… Home theater tech has had allot of our issues sorted forever! Why there isn’t a stronger promotion of integrating that technology into a PC is actually pretty amazing to me.

      I think its why so few people take the audio recommendations here seriously. There is little in the way of comparative considerations to solutions for audio. It comes off more as the site promoting a brand (for kick backs) than making real considerations about user experiences.

        • Krogoth
        • 5 years ago

        The problem is audio format itself. The vast majority of gaming titles with 3D audio don’t encode it over DD or DTS so that receiver isn’t going to help you out unless you intend on the using the computer as a HTPC in a home theater.

    • mdfrncs
    • 5 years ago

    I’m surprised that (at the time of this post) only 27 people use a 3840 x 2160 resolution.

    For once I’m in the top 1%!

      • DarkMikaru
      • 5 years ago

      Not all of us are big ballers with huge monitor budgets man! lol Is that combined or just one big arse monitor you got there?

    • DarkMikaru
    • 5 years ago

    This was a great survey that gives excellent insight into our fellow readers rigs. No surprise with the Intel over AMD preference. But what did surprise me was the 200 – 249 & 300 – 399 video cards having the highest popularity. Personally, I was one of the people in the 149 range. As I am a casual PC gamer I guess that really makes sense. Just didn’t think the market was so strong for 250 – 400 dollar cards.

    Very enlightening survey guys. Stuff like this is cool to see.

      • yogibbear
      • 5 years ago

      Keep in mind that that poll can be misleading, because GPUs have tax markups in other countries making the same model cost anywhere from $50-350 more than in the US depending on country. For example, I had to pay about a $120 premium where I’m from on the sweet spot 770GTX at around the time of its release over the US price.

      • JustAnEngineer
      • 5 years ago

      My $399 Radeon R9-290 just barely fit into the second-most-popular price range when I purchased it on November 4 of last year. If you tried to buy one in January or February, the resellers jacked up the prices to gouge consumers for an additional 80% because of the coin mining fad. If you bought one since April, you probably paid 10-20% less than I did.

    • Ninjitsu
    • 5 years ago

    The lowest total on a poll is 3065 and the max number of votes is 3346.

    Are some people voting multiple times? Are some not voting on everything? Will TR have to trim the vote counts larger than 3065 to 3065 (or whatever the lowest number will be at the end)?

    Or do we assume 3205 votes +/- 4.38% (and thus an error of 4.38% on all the numbers)?

    • remosito
    • 5 years ago

    Would have been interesting to see who has a Rift already.

    • moose17145
    • 5 years ago

    Good god those internet speeds are depressing… seriously… it’s like looking into the year 2004…

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      Internet speeds were much slower back in 2004. You were lucky to have 5-6Mpbs down with a customer-tier package. The rest of the world got by 1-2Mbps downrate.

        • Jason181
        • 5 years ago

        Or still rockin ISDN. ๐Ÿ™‚

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        Yep. I got my first broadband connection (cable) in 2002, and it was 1.5Mbps/256kbit.

        Of course we’d all like to see faster speeds and/or better prices, but it’s not like they’ve made NO progress in that time.

      • egon
      • 5 years ago

      Still lust for 10Mbps – the top end of the lowest category – having been stuck at about 3Mbps down/800Kbps up for the past ten years.

      The network in my area does finally get upgraded to fibre within the next year or so, under Australia’s National Broadband Network scheme. Line speed will go from 3Mbps/800Kbps to 100/40Mbps overnight (with 1Gbps future capacity built-in).

      Even the lowest speed tier available on that new network (12/1Mbps) would put a huge smile on my face. And I can actually still have a sense of gratitude for my 3Mbps ADSL when I think about the dialup days.

      • igortavs
      • 5 years ago

      In a world where there are some ppl that cant even afford in buy a pc, the only depressing thing i can see is some guy pampered enough on his country best conditions and financial income.
      And yet the results goes from values of 10 to 100Mbps, most of them being at 20Mbps which are pretty enough to most or almost every internet user.
      Comments like yours are always quite interesting to me, getting stronger the idea that lucky ppl living in the best conditions/countries are ways out of reality of this world.

      ps.: And of course im even talking about countries with hardware and broadband internet markets.

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        Oh look it’s the “someone has it worse than you so don’t complain about anything ever” card. This is a website about computer hardware. You are going to hear about a lot of first world problems. ๐Ÿ˜›

      • travbrad
      • 5 years ago

      The upload speeds are especially depressing. No wonder a lot of people don’t want to back up to the cloud. It would take years.

    • Silverwar
    • 5 years ago

    How should we list a sshd? 8GB ssd and 2TB mechanical, or as just the mechanical portion?

    • tootercomputer
    • 5 years ago

    Biggest surprise in these findings (given the PC/tech-oriented population):

    1. 90% have only one graphic card. I’ve never had more than one, but I thought I was in the minority given this population.

    2. 54% do not overclock anything. That stuns me given the population from which these responses were drawn. Plus, it is so easy to do now. I guess the hardware has gotten that much better.

    Curious what, if any, surprises others found?

      • meerkt
      • 5 years ago

      That many people have more RAM than they ever use.

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        My guess is a lot of people bought 16GB back when it was super cheap. It’s not THAT hard to use up 8GB of memory either if you do certain things or multi-task a lot. I “only” have 8GB but I’ve managed to use all of it a few times just running ARMA 3 + web browser with 10 or so tabs + Steam.

        Admittedly ARMA 3 is the only game I’ve seen use so much memory, but I wouldn’t be surprised if more do in the future, and it doesn’t hurt to future proof your PC a little bit.

          • patrioteagle07
          • 5 years ago

          Given how many selected it I wish it had more buckets than > 16GB.
          Likewise on CPU’s … no option for dualies.

    • ermo
    • 5 years ago

    TR,

    How about adding “If you use Windows, do you use a an alternative start menu such as classic shell, start8 etc. ?” as an option for people who use Windows?

    I’m pretty curious about how many of the Windows 8/8.1 users would tick that (I use classic shell myself).

      • TwoEars
      • 5 years ago

      I have several friends who have had the look of pure ecstasy on their faces after I’ve introduced them to classic shell. “This the best things that’s happend all week!”, “Here, have a case of beer!” “Can I buy you dinner? It’s on me!”, “you’re a genius!” etc.

      Tells you something about how the average person feels about windows 8…

        • odizzido
        • 5 years ago

        I can tell you that helping average users of W8 is one huge pain in my ass. Thing like how do you turn off your computer, or exit this retarded metro app window are suddenly problems. Why MS released such a turd interface is something that boggles my mind.

          • ermo
          • 5 years ago

          One could argue that the real problem is lack of training/discoverability, at least on the desktop when using an ordinary mouse with the Win8/8.1 UI/UX.

          With touch devices, things might be different.

      • CreoleLakerFan
      • 5 years ago

      Start8 … Metro is an abomination.

    • ronch
    • 5 years ago

    [quote<]Do you have any expansion cards beside a graphics card and sound card?[/quote<] Thus far 75% answered 'no'. I wonder how they add WiFi connectivity to their desktop. Surely we can't have that many people who use a USB WiFi adapter.

      • homerdog
      • 5 years ago

      I have wired Ethernet and I’d guess most people here with desktops do as well..

        • ronch
        • 5 years ago

        Perhaps. But with everyone having gadgets that connect via WiFi I would think most folks would have a WiFi router, which would mean connecting to it using a $15 WiFi card is a lot easier than running LAN cables.

          • bhassel
          • 5 years ago

          That’s still slower, less reliable, higher latency than just running a cable to your desk.

          • Sabresiberian
          • 5 years ago

          The Wi-Fi devices most people have are mobile devices and connect through the home router. The desktop is connected through Ethernet. So, there is no requirement for Wi-Fi on the desktop, and really no point for most of us because we can connect our wireless devices to our main computers through the router.

          Why run the connection through the main desktop computer when you don’t have to? Why spend $15 on something I have no use for? I’m sure there are many people that could put Wi-Fi cards to use (and the poll reflects that opinion), but even so, this questionnaire is pretty much about your main system, not every computer in your house, so people answering are going to answer in regards to their own computer and not Mom and/or Dad’s computer located in a converted bedroom down the hall (for example). That would be the one most likely to have a Wi-Fi connection.

      • funko
      • 5 years ago

      Cat 5 lined walls

      • Waco
      • 5 years ago

      Wifi on a desktop? No thanks.

      • The Wanderer
      • 5 years ago

      Speaking for myself, I don’t. I’m not really sure why I’d need or want it, either…

        • Norphy
        • 5 years ago

        Well, speaking for myself, I live in rented accommodation. My main desktop is at one end of the flat, the router and phone line is at the other. I can’t run a cat5 cable across the flat because we’d trip over it all the time. I can’t run cat5 in the walls because it’s not my property. 802.11n is good enough, I get a strong signal over 5GHz, the connection speed I get is faster than my internet connection, latency isn’t something that I’m too concerned about because I’m not a twitch gamer and the wireless connection that I get is perfectly reliable.

        So speaking for myself, I’m not sure why I’d want or need a wired connection.

      • Sunburn74
      • 5 years ago

      Whats wrong with a USB wifi adapter?

        • Vaughn
        • 5 years ago

        Its not that there is anything wrong with the USB wifi adapter.

        Your just not looking at it like the rest of us.

        The issue is consistent performance.

        You will be dealing with interference, ping spikes, dropped connections and on a stationary desktop machine why do I want to be dealing with that?

      • patrioteagle07
      • 5 years ago

      They don’t? Wired LAN, my extra card is a Raid card for the 8.2TB R5 array. Which surprisingly isn’t that uncommon. 27% had >4TB total storage.

      • Grahambo910
      • 5 years ago

      It’s built into the Asus mobo I use. Moot point however, since I finally got around to running cat5 through the walls.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 5 years ago

      Cat 6 through the walls, now. Router used to be near the desktop previously so used a Cat 5 cable then.

      Still the easiest and most reliable way to get online.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 5 years ago

      USB wifi is so much cheaper than PCI-e. That said I’m using a PCI-e adapter from Rosewill.

      Also, for most people I’m sure it’s a wired connection to the PC and then wifi for phones, tablets, HTPC, consoles, set top boxes, etc.

      • DPete27
      • 5 years ago

      I can’t get ethernet to my main rig so I use a Powerline Network Adapter. It’s [b<]MUCH[/b<] better/faster than the WiFi connection I had before I bought the powerline.

      • Peter.Parker
      • 5 years ago

      I had a PCI wifi card that worked like crap. I returned that to the store to get a small USB wifi dongle. Worked much, MUCH better than the antenna bearing turd from before, and I also didn’t have to open up the computer for that, and I can easily install it in a laptop too, if I ever need to.
      I don’t want to look like I’m promoting this product, but I’m just telling you to try the 150Mbps Wireless N Nano USB Adapter. It worked great in Windows (with drivers on cd) but I had some problems making it work under Linux. Still worth the trouble IMHO.

      • deruberhanyok
      • 5 years ago

      It’s integrated into a lot of motherboards these days – sure, it takes up a mini PCIe slot, but I don’t think a lot of people would consider that an “expansion card”.

    • HisDivineOrder
    • 5 years ago

    Yet again TR ignores the very real possibility that people aren’t:

    1) Using a sound card
    2) Using a USB DAC or sound card
    3) Using a motherboard DAC.

    Realize this please. You can buy a receiver and output your audio through your HDMI from your video card to the receiver. With or without an HDTV.

    Seriously. It’s the best way to get audio from a PC and you completely ignore it because… ?

      • Deanjo
      • 5 years ago

      [quote<]Realize this please. You can buy a receiver and output your audio through your HDMI from your video card to the receiver. With or without an HDTV. Seriously. It's the best way to get audio from a PC and you completely ignore it because... ?[/quote<] Probably because going that route basically limits you to two channel output for anything but video playback. Very few pc games will output 6-8 channels of audio via HDMI leaving you with a two channel PCM stream that relies on your receiver to to matrix into some sort of pseudo surround sound.

        • albundy
        • 5 years ago

        or you could run the realtek crab hack to get DTS Connect/DDL encoding.

          • Deanjo
          • 5 years ago

          Sure, if you wish to further degrade audio quality by adding another layer of lossy compression.

            • kamikaziechameleon
            • 5 years ago

            Still don’t know where you got the issue with HDMI… maybe a driver level issue? My nvidia cards always work better with HDMI than my AMD cards. Still I’m currently using an AMD card for my receiver output.

        • kamikaziechameleon
        • 5 years ago

        Your very wrong, most games will run surround audio via HDMI. to that end I haven’t encountered one that wouldn’t.

        EDIT: my desktop uses his recommended setup, I was referred to it by the guys at AVSforum… I ran the numbers this way and that and it is the best value you can hope for in pc audio.

      • maxxcool
      • 5 years ago

      Yeah and I don’t see a entry for my Alpha 21364 either… sheesh..

        • kamikaziechameleon
        • 5 years ago

        No, he’s right. The cheapest way to get quality surround out of a computer does not include a sound card. Its to grab a budget onkyo or refurb mid level system for $200. I have a 7.1 manufacturer refurb of a $700 stereo system and it sounds amazing. If you think we are making it up please go to AVSforum.com and inquire around. To that point they will refer to you graphs and such on the sound engineering in your average budget/quality setup vs a premium pc surround solution. Every time you’ll see that the Stereo system wins.

        Please do some research, I’ve pleaded this site to do a bit on it. They are missing one of the highest value propositions for an audio file imaginable.

          • CreoleLakerFan
          • 5 years ago

          Hell, on a whim I once paired an old Harman Kardon AVR300 with a set of Aiwa bookshelf speakers I inherited from a previous tenant who graciously left them in the coat closet of an apartment I rented 8 years ago. Output sound to the receiver via the S/PDIF connector on my motherboard, listened to some Apple Lossless CD rips and the sound was the most fscking glorious thing I have ever heard emanating from a PC.

          **Edit** Seriously … “file system check” gets filtered here? Wow … **/Edit**

          • travbrad
          • 5 years ago

          [quote<]To that point they will refer to you graphs and such on the sound engineering in your average budget/quality setup vs a premium pc surround solution. Every time you'll see that the Stereo system wins. [/quote<] It's not all that surprising when you think about it. If you are spending the same amount of money on 2 speakers that you are spending on 8 (7.1), the 2 speakers are generally going to be of a MUCH higher quality. Most of those pre-packaged computer surround systems sell for $100-200 for 6 (5.1) or 8 (7.1) speakers. You can do the math. Of course the best of both worlds would be to have quality speakers all around. ๐Ÿ™‚

            • kamikaziechameleon
            • 5 years ago

            Stereo sound will be better as a rule of thumb.

    • glynor
    • 5 years ago

    The Sound Card question is missing an obvious option, which is a bit odd: My graphics card is my sound card, and has been for eons on multiple machines.

    Why no HDMI option?

      • jihadjoe
      • 5 years ago

      IMO that counts as an external DAC vote. Your GPU isn’t actually doing the audio, just passing it through to your receiver or TV which is what actually acts as your sound card.

      • kamikaziechameleon
      • 5 years ago

      I use a HTreciever with 7.1 setup. Anyone looking for surround on a PC will wander to AVSforum and see that the leading value is to do just that. Run the numbers this way and that… and home theater receiver is the best option I can find plus it unlocks such better speakers for upgrades down the line.

    • anotherengineer
    • 5 years ago

    Also for reference

    [url<]http://store.steampowered.com/hwsurvey/[/url<] I have a dedicated intel network pcie card. I like the steam survey monitor resolutions ~33% at 1920X1080 ~26% at1366x768 ~1% at 2560x1440 From that data, if I was reviewing graphics cards, I think my primary test resolution would be 1920x1080, and reserve 2560x1440 as a secondary test resolution for higher end cards. Edit - I put no wireless since there is none in my desktop, however the router is wireless N900 (asus rt-n66u)

      • vargis14
      • 5 years ago

      I am pushing these new 21:9 3440-1440 IPS monitors bigtime since I think they are the best gaming/productivity and multitasking single screens available. Cut it in half and you have 2 1720-1440 5/4 monitors .
      I enjoy Linus tech tips videos they are very informative and I am Quoting him 4k is dead to him. here is the video of a 34″ 3440-1440 command center monitor [url<]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnrxNfxRK_4[/url<] Not 2 ot clunky looking panels cluttering the desk and having the 4 to 6 nasty bezels. Enjoy

        • anotherengineer
        • 5 years ago

        Maybe, but from this article, screens should be made closer to 4:3 range to best suit our eyes??

        So maybe a 28″ 4000X3000 monitor is what our eyes really need?

        [url<]http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/articles/visual_acuity.htm[/url<]

        • Antias
        • 5 years ago

        I want their new curved one – replace my 3×22″ monitors ๐Ÿ™‚

    • dmjifn
    • 5 years ago

    My workstation has a Core i7-2640M, which is about an i5-2390T which has been discontinued already? So I guess I should have said i5 instead of i7.

    • SuperSpy
    • 5 years ago

    The breakdown of the memory poll says you needed to include a ’32GB and larger’ option =)

    • gbcrush
    • 5 years ago

    Nooo. Go 16:10, GO!!!! You can do it! ๐Ÿ˜€

    • killadark
    • 5 years ago

    Is it bad that my r9 290 trixx costed me $600+ ๐Ÿ˜›

    And im quite surprised that so many are at under 10mbps of speed im on an 4g connection of 100mbps gives upwards of 60mbps mostly and i pay $80 for 3 months unlimited…

      • Pettytheft
      • 5 years ago

      Yes. I got mine for $350 (New) a couple of months ago.

      • sweatshopking
      • 5 years ago

      i also got mine for less than 350$ shipping included

      • Waco
      • 5 years ago

      Hurray for competition in the broadband arena! Oh wait…

      • killadark
      • 5 years ago

      dam them inflated prices in Saudi Arabia always 2 times more ๐Ÿ™

      • LoneWolf15
      • 5 years ago

      My two factory OC-ed R9 280x cards were $350…total.

      Of course, I bought them from someone who had used them, then done a factory RMA-exchange before resale. I’m happy the decline of GPU mining has brought about some great deals. =)

    • designerfx
    • 5 years ago

    Mouse types: Why not “Both” for an option or separating out Bluetooth/RF mice?

    I have a Razer Orochi as my main mouse, which means it’s both wired and wireless. I suppose it’s a small blip in the statistics but hey.

    • Ninjitsu
    • 5 years ago

    I have 3 SSDs, so I reported total solid state capacity.

    I wonder if TR could compare this data to Steam or some other independent hardware survey?

    And to avoid confusion with Core 2, i think the question should have been:
    [quote<] If you have an Intel Core ix processor, is it a [/quote<] EDIT: And I do overclock my GPU sometimes, but since it's not permanent I went with just the CPU option.

    • shaurz
    • 5 years ago

    My main PC is a NUC… LOL. I do have a separate gaming PC, but don’t use it much these days.

    • ronch
    • 5 years ago

    I’ve always been the kind of guy who thinks PC upgrades every 2 to 3.5 years is a normal part of life, but lately I’ve been wanting to stick with my current rig based on an FX-8350 which I got in December 2012 for about 5 years or so, or perhaps I’ll run it to the ground. PC technology has, IMHO, pretty much achieved ~90% of what it can ever be particularly in terms of CPU per-core performance as engineers find less and less ways to make IPC and clock speeds higher and fab processes are increasingly showing signs of slowing down both from engineering and economic point of views. And it doesn’t help that many desktop apps are not able to take advantage of an increasing number of cores. I might, however, upgrade the graphics card, which is an HD7770, and which I find perfectly adequate for the games I play, some time in the future, perhaps a year from now.

    It’s just too bad the original motherboard that I built this system with (MSI 990FXA-GD65) quit 13 months into ownership. I’ve since replaced it with a Gigabyte 990FXA-UD3 rev. 4. Well, nobody wants their boards to quit but if it really was bound to quit I guess I could say I’m glad it did at a time when I could still go out and buy decent AM3+ boards, otherwise I’d have to ditch AMD and go buy a new Intel CPU and mobo, incurring more expenses.

    • odizzido
    • 5 years ago

    I am surprised by how many people have SSDs. I mean, the newest part in my PC is five years old now so I am behind the times but I never expected that over 80% of people had one.

      • internetsandman
      • 5 years ago

      SSD’s are by far the single most benificial upgrade you can make for any system, in any usage scenario. Tiny, low power laptop? Better reliability and battery life. Massive high performance desktop? Drastically reduced load times and seek latency. The difference you feel in day to day use is more tangible than even upgrading your GPU or RAM, because those only help in certain scenarios. SSD’s help all the time, from startup to shut down. Given the prices they’ve reached these days, it’s no wonder so many people have them. It’s actually amazing to see people still scoffing at them and sticking with rotating platters for a system drive

        • christos_thski
        • 5 years ago

        Well said. An SSD drive turned a previously unusable Vaio Core laptop with 1Gig of RAM into a fine machine for web browsing and office work. Previously the hard drive was thrashing to no end, even starting up was a chore ; now it just works.

        • odizzido
        • 5 years ago

        I wouldn’t say I am scoffing at them, I just haven’t gotten anything new for my comp for five years. I do want to get one though and next upgrade(when big maxwell/tonga comes out I think) I will be. I just need to decide at that time if I want to specifically get an m.2 one or not, which sorta depends on whether I will be OCing my i5 750 or getting a new CPU.

      • madtronik
      • 5 years ago

      I also didn’t expect it… but it doesn’t surprise me the least. I am in the minority of only mechanical storage but I had already decided some time ago that in less than six months I will be running an SSD. The percentage will keep going down fast!

      • SubSeven
      • 5 years ago

      I’m pretty sure these survey results are not accurate of the average population as you have a non standard population being tested (yes we’re all a bunch of nerds or we wouldn’t be reading this). In your normal population the average person doesn’t even know what a mechanical HD looks like let alone what an SSD is.

    • travbrad
    • 5 years ago

    The biggest surprise for me so far is how few people overclock their CPU (less than half). It’s so darn easy nowadays and most CPUs effortlessly reach 40-50% overclocks, which in multi-threaded stuff like video encoding = 40-50% performance improvement.

    Other than that it seems my PC is very average among TR readers. I fall into the top 1-2 most voted options on almost everything.

      • Peldor
      • 5 years ago

      Percentage of responders who encode video on anything like a regular basis? Probably less than the overclocking crowd.

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        It also improves gaming performance in quite a few games (especially the ones that still only use 1-2 cores). Kerbal Space Program, ARMA 3, Planetside 2, etc all show pretty much linear scaling with CPU frequency.

      • The Wanderer
      • 5 years ago

      I did overclock my CPU (990X Extreme) at one point, but I discovered that the balance between performance on the one hand and noise, system temperatures, and power consumption on the other was better for my purposes at the stock clocks.

      If my situation changes, that may well change as well, and the overclocking headroom is there.

      • Kretschmer
      • 5 years ago

      My Ivy Bridge i5 is never a bottleneck as is. I’d imagine that this is the case for most respondants.

      If it ever gets long in the tooth, I’ll trade my passive cooling for a few fans and grab the extra performance.

      • homerdog
      • 5 years ago

      I have a 3770K but at stock it’s plenty fast for everything I do. Wouldn’t make much sense to overclock it.

      If it hadn’t been free I would’ve gone with the regular 3770.

      • stdRaichu
      • 5 years ago

      I do a fair amount of video encoding, and my 2600K will run at 4.5GHz without a problem by just pushing the turbo button but I still don’t overclock as I don’t think it’s worth the extra quids on the leccy bill.

    • ronch
    • 5 years ago

    Well, that was fun. The results are interesting.

    • Laykun
    • 5 years ago

    Based on the fact that SO many people seem to use scissor switch keyboards there must be a lot of laptops out there. I actually had to look it up since I would have classified laptop keyboards as rubber dome as I was confusing scissor switch with buckling spring for some reason. I wonder if people actually know if their laptop is supposed to be scissor switch and if the keyboards metrics collected is actually valid.

      • spuppy
      • 5 years ago

      Compact/Low Profile desktop keyboards often use scissor switches

    • kureshii
    • 5 years ago

    Used to be a latest-and-greatest upgrader, but after moving to small-form-factor builds, I’m on a downward-TDP trend. Currently on a [url=http://writoscope.me/2014/02/16/hdplex-h1-s-review-premium-silence/<]passively cooled i5-4440S build[/url<], and can't wait to get TDP even lower for similar performance. Was going to put Mini-ITX for system form factor but went with "others" instead. I'm on a Thin-ITX build, which may seem similar to Mini-ITX in size, but differs in almost every way hardware-wise. Thin-ITX ditches the 24-pin mobo power connector for 19V DC-in, uses SODIMMs rather than DIMMs, and comes with at least one mSATA/mPCIe slot. Still waiting for them to come with M.2 slots and S/PDIF options. What's really great about it is just how cable-free one can go after eliminating the ATX/SFX PSU, the SATA SSD (switched to mSATA), the fans (chassis acts as a heatsink, with heatpipes from CPU cooling block), and other little things. The only internal cables I have now are the power button, USB headers, and the PSU DC-in (I am using an internal 120W AC brick rather than an external one).

      • Airmantharp
      • 5 years ago

      Many applause for your crusade, I’d love to see more high-quality passive builds be pushed to lower price-points.

      However, I don’t understand the interest in S/PDIF- what’s up with that?

        • kureshii
        • 5 years ago

        Actually it’s only because I jumped on a discounted nuforce dia DAC, which only takes S/PDIF in. At some point I will probably cave and just buy a proper USB DAC.

    • Northtag
    • 5 years ago

    Hey, no option for 5 processor cores. I picked 4 in the end, since that’s what my 960T was sold as.

    • mcnels1
    • 5 years ago

    Is “system form factor” the motherboard or the case? I have a microATX motherboard in an ATX case. I answered ATX.

    • ozzuneoj
    • 5 years ago

    Just a side note to TR.

    The “more polls” clickable area covers the entire line that that link is on, all the way to the left. I filled out the whole survey quickly (without hitting vote) and then accidentally missed the first vote button and clicked the invisible link. Upon hitting Back my check boxes were cleared.

    Small issue, but I thought I’d mention it. Large invisible clickable areas can be a bit annoying.

    This is on Firefox by the way.

      • Cyril
      • 5 years ago

      Should be fixed now.

    • UnfriendlyFire
    • 5 years ago

    -Pentium III 533EB CPU (I think, might’ve been a 600mhz model)
    -128MB of RAM
    -Unknown AGP Nividia GPU card without a heatsink (no screw holes to attach one either). Windows XP default gpu driver (not sure if Nividia still has such driver one their website)
    -32GB IDE HDD
    -Floppy drive
    -32X CD drive (no DVD compatibility)
    -Sound card with a cable connecting to the CD drive
    -Dual dial-up connection ports
    -USB 1.1 ports
    -15″ 480p CRT monitor
    -PS/2 mouse and keyboards
    -Speakers required a very large box of some sort, about 3x the size of a PSU. It connects the desktop’s audio output to the speakers’ input.

    (last time it was turned on: More than 5 years ago)

      • meerkt
      • 5 years ago

      That’s not a very inspiring computer even for the year 2000.

        • UnfriendlyFire
        • 5 years ago

        It came with Windows ME originally. BSODed a day after the set up, and that was the first error message I saw when I was a little kid.

        EDIT: And it had no audio for about a month due to the sound driver not playing nice with the OS.

        My dad upgraded to Windows XP as an early adopter. Because even vanilla Windows XP was better than ME.

          • meerkt
          • 5 years ago

          Why not Win98SE? Besides being snappier than XP in general, it’s a better match for 128MB.

            • Jason181
            • 5 years ago

            Probably because XP was a better OS than 98SE (I really, really like 98SE). I worked at a company that was using Windows 2000 with 64 MB of RAM. Took 10 seconds just to switch between windows.

      • plonk420
      • 5 years ago

      my router is slightly faster than that
      -Athlon 750
      -128(?)MB RAM
      -8GB hdd
      -17″ CRT monitor

        • willmore
        • 5 years ago

        my router is slightly faster than that
        -AMD E-350
        -4GB DDR3
        -32GB SSD
        -headless (hey, it’s a router)

    • NeelyCam
    • 5 years ago

    Only 6% use integrated graphics…?

      • f0d
      • 5 years ago

      thats actually higher than i thought it would be

      even my HTPC has a 6970 in it

        • NeelyCam
        • 5 years ago

        I have a PS3, two desktops, one NUC, two laptops, zero discrete graphics cards.

        Hmm… I’m starting to wonder if I belong here or not

          • sweatshopking
          • 5 years ago

          YOU DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

          • derFunkenstein
          • 5 years ago

          Doesn’t matter if you “belong” here.

          Honestly, outside of playing Diablo, my gaming has shifted (back) towards consoles in a big way. I have a PS3 and a PS4 and I just don’t want to be at my desktop outside of work hours all that much anymore.

    • WhatMeWorry
    • 5 years ago

    Oh great. Another thing to feel inadequate about.

      • Wirko
      • 5 years ago

      I’m close to adequate, just living in 2008. The past survey results told me so.

    • skitzo_zac
    • 5 years ago

    Where’s the option for ‘Gigabit Ethernet’ for home network?

    I DO have an 802.11n (and answered that), but all my desktops and consoles are hooked up with physical cables to Gigabit switches.

    If only my Internet was anywhere near that fast though, FTTH NBN where are you?

      • TwoEars
      • 5 years ago

      I’ve always liked physical cables as well for anything that’s stationary.

      I’m more suprised that 10Gb is taking so long to take off! The tech is here! Where’s the price drop and mass market adaption? Surely it can’t be that hard can it?

        • stdRaichu
        • 5 years ago

        I ticked the boxes for add-in cards as I use 10Gb ethernet and also use wired – never found a wireless solution that was reliable. Fine for web browsing, dodgy for watching video and downright unusable for shunting data around at more than a few MB a second.

        2015 is looking to be a good year for 10Gb ethernet – the brand new Intel Fortville adapters have drastically lowered the power requirements for 40Gb and 10Gb connections (to the extent that I expect to start seeing them onboard server and workstation mobos in the very near future), and the cards are expected to eventually sell for half of what the X540 adapters go for. Affordable switches are also starting to appear – I picked up the Mikrotik 226-24G-2S+-IN (catchy name) with two 10Gb SFP+ ports for ยฃ250.

        That said – it’s still not taking off because for most people wireless or 1Gb ethernet is still more than fast enough.

        • skitzo_zac
        • 5 years ago

        Oooh yeah. I would love to put in a 10Gb connection from my Desktop PC back to my Server/NAS/HTPC rig, or at least get a half decent switch so I can bond a couple of 1Gb links together.

          • stdRaichu
          • 5 years ago

          NIC bonding, depending on the method you use, is either awesome or more trouble than it’s worth – if you’re talking the 802.3ad bonding configuration then you’ll normally need switch support, but other methods like balance-alb don’t need any special support and will work with any dumb switch… but the downside is that they’ll still only give you 1Gb/s on any single point-to-point connection (i.e. you’ll only get ~100MB/s from your NAS to your desktop instead of ~200MB/s).

          If you want to try the etherchannel/802.3ad/LACP route then I can confirm that it works with the very-reasonably-priced HP 1810 v2 switches (8-port version costs about ยฃ50 here). But personally I’d save your pennies for another year or so when we might finally see 10Gb falling in price enough to enter the enthusiast segment – it’s simpler to set up than bonding and doesn’t have the performance pitfalls.

          • CreoleLakerFan
          • 5 years ago

          For 2-3 systems, look into Infiniband. Point-to-point is cheap, and cards are available on ebay for cheap. I have a 3-node VMware lab – 2 ESXi servers and a NAS each house a 2-port Mellanox QDR card, creating a mesh topology (I made that up, but it’s applicable). I got the cards for $70 each, cables for around $15 a pop.

          For more than 3 systems, you do need an infiniband switch, so costs can scale quickly, but it’s still cheaper than 10GbE.

            • JustAnEngineer
            • 5 years ago

            Your topology is a ring,.

        • Krogoth
        • 5 years ago

        It is because there’s no killer app or mainstream demand for 10Gbps Ethernet. It is considered to be enterprise/prosumer tier just like Gigabit Ethernet was back in the day when it came out. It took years for Gigabit Ethernet to finally become mainstream. Gigabit Ethernet still yields enough to handle the majority of non-prosumer-tier NAS solutions out there. USB 3.0/3.1 and Thunderbolt are viable and sometimes cheaper solutions for ultra-high bandwidth if you don’t need long cable lengths.

        Besides, the mainstream market is far more interested in Wireless Ethernet than Wired Ethernet.

      • Sapien
      • 5 years ago

      Exactly the same here – I would never run my stationary systems on WiFi.
      I still hear some people argue that the speed of WiFi is close to gigabit cabled networks. And I think that too many people actually have that perception. That might be one of the reasons that 10Gb switches hasn’t become mainstream yet (lack of demand).

      What they don’t realize, is that on WiFi:
      – You almost certainly will not get a full speed connection (I have never seen above 150Mb on my .11n).
      – Actual data throughput will not go above 30-35% of the connection speed.
      – Latency that is an order of magnitude higher than wired networks.

      On wired
      – Low latency.
      – Utilization of more than 80% of theoretical max throughput.

      Would be interesting to see how many are running WiFi only on their desktops…..

      • travbrad
      • 5 years ago

      Yeah. I have wireless (ac) router, but it only gets used for netflix/bluray player and smartphone stuff. My PCs are connected with GigE. Interference is a nightmare around here, even at 5ghz. That’s not so much of an issue for netflix or browsing on a smartphone, but try gaming with your ping spiking between 20 and 500ms, sometimes dropping packets completely.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 5 years ago

      Yup same here, though i guess they’re assuming that routers will support Gigabit Ethernet anyway…which isn’t a good assumption.

    • Shobai
    • 5 years ago

    I’d be interested in the breakdown of the results for “Do you have any expansion cards beside a graphics card and sound card?”

    I would guess that most of the Yes responses would be a WiFi card – at least that’s what mine is.

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      Some people have RAID cards or using SSD PCIe cards. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      I have an old tuner/capture card in there.

      • Meadows
      • 5 years ago

      I have a NIC add-on because I don’t trust the motherboard with it.

    • mnecaise
    • 5 years ago

    These days, my laptop serves as my main “desktop” PC.

    • willmore
    • 5 years ago

    2048×1152, so I picked other. Great, now I’m stuck with the short bus people who don’t know their monitors resolution.

      • StuG
      • 5 years ago

      2048×1152 represent! I’m with you on that short bus.

        • willmore
        • 5 years ago

        Not sure if I should be happy about that, but +1 to you.

    • meerkt
    • 5 years ago

    I hope I didn’t skew the results too much. ๐Ÿ™‚ My nominally “main” desktop is by far not the fastest/best desktop, in many regards, and it’s much much older than the laptop I use much more these days (but with the intention of returning to more desktop use at some point).

    • hhhoudini
    • 5 years ago

    I’m surprised you haven’t offered us the chance to tell you about our second or third computer. Seems like there might be a few of us with more than one.

    • Omniman
    • 5 years ago

    Yay for my 2/1 mbps connection woo *shoots self*

    • jessterman21
    • 5 years ago

    MAN! Only 2% with i3s? I mean, I guess technically an i3 is mostly a placeholder for any enthusiast/gamer who’s waiting to upgrade to a big-boy processor… But I am and forever will be an i3 fan.

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      I think the Pentium AE and cheap i5s made a lot of i3s irrelevant. That’s also where AMD really starts cutting into the market.

      • CeeGee
      • 5 years ago

      If only there was an i3 ‘K’ CPU.

    • christos_thski
    • 5 years ago

    One thing clear from the stats is that not even we enthusiasts care for sli/crossfire setups. In fact, MANY more people have discrete sound cards than do dual gpu rigs. That actually surprised me.

      • oldDummy
      • 5 years ago

      I put in for dual but it was a white lie: GTX 690

      • Derfer
      • 5 years ago

      Doesn’t surprise me. Dual cards work 95% of the time, but it’s the details that drive people away. I got sick of the additional software up keep and quarks, waiting for driver support and such. Then there’s the pain in the ass to cool it all.

      • cygnus1
      • 5 years ago

      I only have an SLI setup because of a shipping error that got me an extra video card.

      • TwoEars
      • 5 years ago

      I think it’s a tech report anomaly for whatever reason, lots of enthusiasts are rocking SLI/crossfire these days.

      I have to admit I a little apprehensive in trying it but I’ve been suprised with the stability/performance/support for my 670 SLi rig. Very mature technology by now! Works great!

        • Meadows
        • 5 years ago

        Cite these “lots of enthusiasts”.

        • TrailBlazerDK
        • 5 years ago

        Maybe not an anomaly, seeing most of us have read “Inside the second”.

        • oldDummy
        • 5 years ago

        Have to agree with you regarding 670 SLI setup. Powerful mostly trouble free experience; promised to a relative after I got a used GTX690.
        Drawbacks include heat, case/MB size, noise.
        The GTX 690 is, for me, best of all worlds. Should hold me over till 4K becomes mainstream and even then will likely do OK.

      • bacondreamer
      • 5 years ago

      I have two GPU in my system, a GTX680 and a GTX460 as PhysX card ๐Ÿ˜€

      • Pettytheft
      • 5 years ago

      Considering how much play and discussion they get it’s always baffled me as well. When you look at Steam stats most people just don’t care. We get entire articles on this and massive discussions by the select few who own these products. You’d think it was more like 50%.

      Next up G/Freesync. Most people just don’t notice or care but we’re going to hear about it in every monitor and video card thread.

      • lilbuddhaman
      • 5 years ago

      I previously had 6870’s crossfire’d, it was a pain in the ass. Single 770 gtx now.

    • Geonerd
    • 5 years ago

    Too late to add CRT to the monitor choices? A giant Trinitron is still a sweet display. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • meerkt
      • 5 years ago

      With those horizontal lines?! Beyond that, *trons have nice colors, but I’m not the greatest fan of the textured look of aperture grille. Shadow mask for me.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 5 years ago

        Yeah once someone pointed out the classic Trinitron wire lines I had to sell mine. Loved it right up until I couldn’t un-see that.

          • Krogoth
          • 5 years ago

          It is no different to pointing out the flaws to the types of LCD panels (*VA, TN and IPS).

            • meerkt
            • 5 years ago

            LCD flaws need pointing out?!

          • Meadows
          • 5 years ago

          I had an IBM aperture grill monitor until it broke last week. I had no issues with the looks, and the two stabilising horizontal strands were almost never visible unless I looked at bright still images. Never bothered me while gaming, for example. I’m still mourning the loss.

          I’ll probably get that G-Sync ASUS TN about which TR had written a rave review, but my wallet eerily whispers “not this monthhhhhh”.

    • f0d
    • 5 years ago

    i wish we could have put in our clock speed
    i would have liked to know how many others broke the 5ghz barrier

    [url<]http://valid.canardpc.com/pzlkgd[/url<] yeah i run it everyday at this speed except summer where it actually heats up the room - and its not summer here in aus ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      Not too many, it is difficult to break 5Ghz barrier without resorting to exotic cooling.

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        Yep and even on chips that can break 5Ghz you usually will get MUCH cooler temps and lower voltages just by reducing your OC a little bit.

        5Ghz sounds nice but if you can get 95% of the performance for 20C cooler (as is the case with my 2500K) that’s often the better choice, especially during summer or in warm climates.

    • internetsandman
    • 5 years ago

    It’s the internet connection speeds that baffle me. The fact that approximately 60% of people have 5mb or less upstream is pretty sad. I’m one of those people, and here in Canada I was under the impression that the ISP’s weren’t greedy sadists

      • yogibbear
      • 5 years ago

      Australia here. We have always been starved on upload speed. (Let alone download).

        • internetsandman
        • 5 years ago

        Oh god that didn’t even occur to me…I never hear anything good about Australian internet. Apologies for the geography of the world ๐Ÿ™

          • f0d
          • 5 years ago

          yeah its horrible and now we have a new government that stopped the previous governments plan to roll out FTTH we are even more boned

          i have a choice of crappy internet or even more crappy internet atm

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      It is because ISP want you to get their business tier plans if you want more uprate bandwidth. The chances are that if you need that much uprate bandwidth, you are probably running some kind of business or non-profit.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 5 years ago

      India:

      Down: 8 mbps till 30 GB, then 512k beyond.
      Up: 512k – 700k

      • stdRaichu
      • 5 years ago

      UK here, I’m still on a ~20Mbps down/1Mbps up connection myself at ยฃ20pcm with line rental being another ยฃ10 a month* on a rolling 1-month contract. I’m lucky enough to be in a FTTC+VDSL area so I could get 80Mbps down/20Mbps up for about ยฃ50pcm or 40/10 for ยฃ30pcm but… there’s just no need for it for me. The only thing I could conceivably use the upload bandwidth for is syncing backups to a mates house but given that the plans all have a mandated 500GB/month cap there’s just no point. All the FTTC here uses the same BT backbone and it’s still quite new so hasn’t really been taken up by alternate providers yet.

      Edit: spoke too soon, I see that Zen are now offerring “truly unlimited” (their words) fibre packages for about ยฃ40pcm. Tempting but still requires a 12month contract.

      * This is quite expensive for the UK I think since it’s a business-class line but it gets me rock-solid reliability and 24/7 phone support to an actual techie that doesn’t even have a script – they’re able to check the status of the DSLAM within a couple of minutes and reboot it rapidly if need be. Latency is also ludicrously low since unlike most of the consumer ISPs they don’t employ any traffic-shaping. I’ve had several friends with connections of 50Mb/s or over on cheap ISPs that struggled to watch youtube or iplayer during peak hours.

      • Waco
      • 5 years ago

      I’m at 6/.5 DSL…it blows.

    • crystall
    • 5 years ago

    I’ve got a Xeon E3 1270v2 so I’ve lumped it in the “Other Intel” category. Still it would be nice to have at least a generic Xeon/Opteron option to gauge how many people actually need server-ish stuff on their main desktop for things such as ECC memory.

    [edit] fixed a grammar horror

      • prb123
      • 5 years ago

      Need or want? I got a killer deal on Dual Quad Core E5410 w/ 16GB Reg ECC DDR2 all on a nice Supermicro workstation motherboard about 2 years ago ($130 Total). Need to grab a set of E5450s once they hit rock bottom.

        • ludi
        • 5 years ago

        You can get a matched pair of E5450s on eBay for about $50-60, although you might find the heat output raises your fan speeds noticeably. A pair of X5460s go for almost twice that much but the returns are diminishing. You can also pick up PC2-5300f DIMM sets for pretty cheap since the tech is pretty much obsolete. I put 32GB (4GB x 8) into a Precision 490 for about $80 last month.

          • crystall
          • 5 years ago

          It’s quite ironic isn’t it? Even though all this gear is obsolete on paper it can still make an excellent workstation/server for a fraction of the price you would pay for new stuff.

          • TechCtrl
          • 5 years ago

          Yeah I got a cheap X5650 as a replacement for my Core i7 920, Overclocked it to 4.2 and its been the best purchase I’ve ever made.

    • duke_sandman
    • 5 years ago

    Wow. Am I that behind the times? I have 2 of the 1280×1024 Dell 17″ specials. 1280×1024 is not even an option on the displays? Being driven by my Core2 Q6600 (SLACR, thank you) and GeForce 8600GT?

      • crystall
      • 5 years ago

      We’re two here. I’ve got an Eizo Flexscan S1932 which is a 1280×1024 19″ SPVA display. The panel is gorgeous, I wouldn’t replace it for anything else. Except maybe a FORIS FG2421 but that’s way too expensive for my pockets.

      • Kougar
      • 5 years ago

      Your 8600GT still works? I have one that sat around in a box most of its life, went to put it in my father’s PC to replace his bad GPU fan and found out all the “solid” caps were actually not solid caps at all. They were liquid caps in aluminum casings dressed to look like solid caps, but they had popped their guts all over the inside of the plastic clamshell.

      [url<]https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/70926812/IMG_2693.JPG[/url<] [url<]https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/70926812/IMG_2633.JPG[/url<]

      • Prototyped
      • 5 years ago

      2007 called, it wants its Kentsfield back. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • davidbowser
      • 5 years ago

      I loved my Q6600 and used it until I ran into a problem with the mobo.

      I am a screen real estate whore though, so I can’t commiserate there.

    • vvas
    • 5 years ago

    So according to the results so far:
    [list<] [*<] Most people don't have other expansion cards besides graphics and sound cards. [/*<][*<] Most people don't even have a sound card. [/*<][*<] Most people don't have more than one graphics card. [/*<] [/list<] In other words... there's a whole lot of people out there who only really need that sole 16x PCIe expansion slot that the graphics card goes in. And yet, again according to the results so far, most people have a full ATX motherboard. How does that make any sense? Personally, if I didn't have various legacy needs that eat up a few expansion slots, I would definitely go for mATX for my next build. All the major motherboard manufacturers release premium mATX boards these days, and as far as cases go, something like the Corsair Obsidian 350D or the Fractal Design Define Mini looks fantastic.

      • f0d
      • 5 years ago

      for me space isnt at a premium – i live in a big house and i have a computer “room”

      the motherboard i wanted (x79 sabertooth) had no equal in matx and in most matx cases i cant fit my custom watercooling system (i have a 500mm long reservoir) and i couldnt fit my 9 hard drives in most matx cases

      so yeah i have one card in my atx motherboard in my atx case (900d) if you consider other stuff than pcie cards its chock full

      edit: typo

        • vvas
        • 5 years ago

        9 hard drives!?! You, sir, win this thread.

          • Deanjo
          • 5 years ago

          Just 9 drives?

        • The Wanderer
        • 5 years ago

        I don’t quite go to 9, but I do have 7 (2 SSD and the rest mechanical storage), plus an optical drive which takes up an 8th SATA port. I had a hard time finding a motherboard/case combination that would even support that many properly; it’s my main bottleneck on system builds.

      • internetsandman
      • 5 years ago

      I have a Define Mini, and if I switch to an external audio solution then I would happily adopt the mITX form factor (unless I also wanna go x99)

      ATX just seems like a masive waste of space for anything other than power users

      • christos_thski
      • 5 years ago

      I am one of those people. It’s psychological more than anything else. Spend enough time fussing with badly designed cheap cases, and you end up buying XoBX-huge atx cases next, as if they’re the only ones practical to work on. And let’s not forget that on the lower end of the price spectrum that may very well be true. Additionally, premium micro-atx motherboards are a relatively new phenomenon, matx used to be all about budget products..

      • sweatshopking
      • 5 years ago

      my 290x is big. the mobo doesn’t matter since i still need a huge case.

      • Shambles
      • 5 years ago

      After building a mATX machine for my wife I’ll never do another ATX build again. My ATX case is such a waste of space and weight. I’d even be tempted to go mITX but that’s a bit too much of a sacrifice for me since I’d like to keep all 3 desktops on the same motherboard layout as my gaming rig ends up turning into my HTPC down the road which is still in an old Antec 300. Once everything in the house is mATX even that case will be swapped for one that’s smaller.

      • yogibbear
      • 5 years ago

      My big ATX case can fit my 6x HDDs & 2 x SSDs, as well as staying cool & quiet.

      • vshade
      • 5 years ago

      I’m running my i5-4670 and a GTX 760 on mini-itx case(and mother board), my case can fit 2 internal drives and an optical one(which I don’t use)

      • kureshii
      • 5 years ago

      vvas: Keep in mind that often, there is negligible price difference between mATX and ATX boards (if anything, some mATX boards seem to have a price premium for the same features). Just because someone buys an ATX board doesnโ€™t necessarily mean they intend to use those expansion slots someday, it could just be a discount or combo price that did the talking.

      Personally, Iโ€™m an ITX kind of guy, and I still have to pay the price premium for fewer PCIe slots . . . go figure.

      • Peldor
      • 5 years ago

      I went back to atx after running a SFF system for a few years. It’s just easier to work in on the off chance I need to and I don’t need to wonder if I’ve got room for whatever.

      Micro atx would do as well but doesn’t offer any notable advantage. The cases you mention are already ATX sized. 17.7 x 8.3 x 17.3 or 19.3 x 8.3 x 15.6. My ATX “mid tower” is smaller than both of those in volume.

      • ronch
      • 5 years ago

      I agree. I’m not a fan of CF or SLI and having a video card, a WiFi PCIe card, and an extra x1 slot for a sound card is all i believe I’ll ever need, so a mATX board would be sufficient.

      • Waco
      • 5 years ago

      I have a full ATX case for my watercooling gear and most mATX and ITX boards suck for overclocking.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 5 years ago

      Full ATX is easier to work with, I find.

        • DragonsMaw
        • 5 years ago

        Having space to spare is easier to work with. I use an mITX board in an mATX case.
        The only other issue I is being able to swap hard drives around so anything with drives on rails or caddies fills most practical concerns. It’s useful for playing around with a new OS build on a spare drive without having to pull off every single panel just to get at screws.

          • CreoleLakerFan
          • 5 years ago

          I have a MiniITX board in a Moneual MicroATX case for my HTPC. My first build used MicroATX, but I found I that I too prefer more space in the chassis – it was a tight fit with the MicroATX.

      • CreoleLakerFan
      • 5 years ago

      I have a dual-card setup for my “main” (gamer) rig which is housed on an ATX platform, but the last five systems (2 NAS, 2 Lab Servers, HTPC) I put together all used Mini-ITX. I have a MicroATX build in the near future (backend PVR) but only because I prefer PCIe capture cards over USB capture devices for space/power/cabling tidiness.

      Then there are NUCs and Laptops – I definitely trend toward smaller footprints.

    • south side sammy
    • 5 years ago

    I have a tough time believing nobody uses a server chip but none were on the list……….??????????

    would have been interesting to see the differences.

    • derTorbs
    • 5 years ago

    I want to know who the hell is rocking 6 displays

      • Forge
      • 5 years ago

      Yeah, as I told chuckula, that’s me. Some other poser has polluted my pristine answer, though.

      I’m actually thinking I may cut back some. Games are only on the primary 2560*1440 anyways.

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        Can you SEE the Matrix yet?

    • MadManOriginal
    • 5 years ago

    The best part about this poll is comparing the results to the perception one gets from all the various news and review comments. There are clearly some vocal minorities that make things seem a fair amount different than the poll results.

      • sweatshopking
      • 5 years ago

      40% of these bros are running the WORST OPERATING SYSTEM EVER CREATED OMG KILLING MYSELF

        • MadManOriginal
        • 5 years ago

        I wasn’t going to point out any specifics, but yeah that’s one of them. Another obvious one is how many people are running Core 4000-series CPUs despite all the ‘only 5% improvement!’ and ‘my 2000-series is still awesome’ posts.

          • sweatshopking
          • 5 years ago

          I picked up a complete system for almost nothing, and it came with a 4670k. i wouldn’t have bothered with haswell on a desktop otherwise.

          • travbrad
          • 5 years ago

          I would guess most of those people with Core 4xxx (Haswell) CPUs probably didn’t upgrade from a Core 2xxx (SB) or 3xxx (IB) CPU though. As we can see from the poll results about 1/3rd of people are STILL running hardware that predates even Sandy Bridge (Core 2, Nahelem, and Phenom II)

          Sandy and Ivy Bridge ARE still awesome CPUs, so the people who say that are right.

          It may not be worth upgrading for 5-10% gains, but there’s no reason to deny yourself those improvements if you are upgrading from something older. The motherboards/chipsets have improved since Sandy Bridge too with stuff like more native USB 3 ports.

        • TwoEars
        • 5 years ago

        Windows 8.1 is THE BEST OPERATING SYSTEM EVER…. once you’ve installed classic shell and done away with that hideous surface thing.

        Although I do admit Win7 still had the best look with Aero.

          • patrioteagle07
          • 5 years ago

          I seriously wish 8.1 wasn’t faster than 7 so I could go back to 7.

          No its not the looks you can “fix” that with 3rd party tools.
          It just hates my hardware and is by far more unstable than Vista.
          On a previous build it wouldn’t detect my Mirrored drives and I had to write a script to have my D drive labelled every boot.

          Now it just likes to destroy my BCD and I have to rebuild my MBR and BCD every so often after reboots. I have a recovery key on standby… Thought it was the SSD so I replaced that and… nope not the problem. Been over a month since it f*#@*d up last… So I am moderately content.

            • CreoleLakerFan
            • 5 years ago

            USB selective suspend in Windows 8 screws with my gaming peripherals. My gamer is Windows 7.

      • jihadjoe
      • 5 years ago

      Also interesting to compare these results with other surveys. TR readers are definitely a part of the enthusiast minority.

      • Khali
      • 5 years ago

      The thing that jumps out at me is how many are sticking with the ATX form factor and use a optical drive. Pretty much lets the air out of the small form factor camp who have been going on and on about how every one is moving to anything smaller than ATX.

    • Khali
    • 5 years ago

    Next time I would like to see just what other GPU’s are being used besides the main one that runs peoples monitors. TR might not be interested in that type of info but I think others might be. I have a 780 Ti that feeds my monitor, a 680 and a 550 Ti. They all get used for DC projects.

    • OneShotOneKill
    • 5 years ago

    More than 8 cores.. I win (or tie, grrr).

      • Flying Fox
      • 5 years ago

      Fake hyperthreaded cores or real physical?

        • OneShotOneKill
        • 5 years ago

        Real (Dual Xeon) ๐Ÿ™‚

        • f0d
        • 5 years ago

        or fake module cores

      • the
      • 5 years ago

      My dual Opteron and its 32 cores says ‘Hi’.

    • OneShotOneKill
    • 5 years ago

    Dual XEON X5677 on primary. OC’ed X5470 771 to 775 mod
    in spare. Cheap and still rock solid chips.

      • atari030
      • 5 years ago

      What’s that you say? chmod 775? ๐Ÿ™‚

    • albundy
    • 5 years ago

    Nvidia GeForce 9 series (1 votes)

    yup thats me. still running it on a phenom II 4Ghz. Its gonna be a while til my next system upgrade. The rig is still running pretty smooth since i upped the ram to 12GB and threw in a seagate SSD. hopefully gonna see what i can get on cyber monday for a video card upgrade.

      • vvas
      • 5 years ago

      First-generation Phenom here, with DDR2. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Currently waiting for DDR4 to become mainstream in order to upgrade. I’ll probably be one of the very few people in here to completely skip DDR3! (Though to be fair, a few of my laptops have it.)

        • albundy
        • 5 years ago

        hey, as long as it does what you need it to do, then it’s still good!

        • dragosmp
        • 5 years ago

        Second gen Phenom here, also with DDR2. I too am waiting for a reason to upgrade and during the DDR3 years for my budget nothing showed up, so it’ll be DDR4 whenever the time comes

    • Captain Ned
    • 5 years ago

    It would be really nice if one could click once to register all the votes.

      • chuckula
      • 5 years ago

      One click you say?
      Sorry, Amazon gotta a patent on that.

    • WillBach
    • 5 years ago

    I was looking for a poll options that said “cat hair” and “a twisted mess of cables” but it turns out this is the TR component survey ๐Ÿ˜›

    I have the dubious distinction of hitting the smallest SSD capacity option and the largest spinning disk capacity. Yay, min-maxing!

    • Mad Lion
    • 5 years ago

    I’m pretty average. 4770k at 4.0 turbo on all cores (I had it running cinebench and AIDA64 successfully at 4.3, but holy CRAP the temps, and honestly, it doesn’t matter to me much). Coolermaster 212+. I’m in the minority with my ASrock motherboard (ASRock z87 extreme 4) but it was a good deal and it’s been stable so far. 8 GB of 1866 DDR3 with Cas 9. I run digital out to my home stereo for sound. I only have a Radeon 7850 right now. I’m going to upgrade once the new Unreal Tournament drops, but for now, this old 7850 2GB is doing fine at 1080p. 24″ 1080p monitor with a 19″ monitor as a secondary (got it for free! Whoop!). Logitech wired laser mouse and crappy logitech keyboard (I tend to spill things on them, or my cat does, I can’t trust myself to own a high quality keyboard after having ruined a couple already…). DVD burner. It’s all stuffed in an inexpensive NZXT case with a ton of 120mm fans and a 550 watt Rocketfish PSU. This Rocketfish was on ebay for cheap, and I researched it on Hardware secrets, and they had a review and it pass with flying colors. It’s actually a 500 watt PSU, but it’s a legit 500 watt. They recommended it, so I jumped on it for cheap. Storate is a Sandisk Extreme series 120GB SSD (with the bios update to fix that issue it had), a 250 GB drive just for steam, and a 1TB disk for mass storage. The worst thing about my poll was my internet connection. I’m still on 6mbps DSL. I have 30mbps cable available, but I don’t want to pay that much per month at the moment.

    • Meadows
    • 5 years ago

    As of this comment, 81% of the respondents marked having purchased an intel CPU.

    About 10-15 percentage points higher than I (quite naively) expected. Looks dire from the other side of the fence, but at the end of the day it’s reasonable.

      • TwoEars
      • 5 years ago

      It is completely reasonable since intel is the only cpu manufacturer who has anything to offer the enthusiast crowd these days – like it or not!

      I used to be a Athlon fanboy, but I’ve given up on AMD these days. If anyone can challenge intel it’s ARM or Nvidia. Or maybe IBM or Google with quantum computing, but that’s kind of a long shot.

      • tipoo
      • 5 years ago

      Makes quite perfect sense, as this is about main desktops and not cheap laptops where APUs may have a stronger hold. And 19% marketshare for AMD isn’t crazy low either, actually higher than I expected from an enthusiast site.

      • GTVic
      • 5 years ago

      Wait until the page finishes loading for the other CPUs …

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      It takes longer for AMD CPU users to load the page and vote.

    • Freon
    • 5 years ago

    58% have only a single display? But most people are rocking $200+ video cards… You poor bastards, get with it!

      • thanatos355
      • 5 years ago

      I personally detest mutli-monitor setups. Bezels = blind spots = ftl.

        • w76
        • 5 years ago

        Some people use them, ya’know, for work/productivity. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I actually turn my 2nd monitor off while gaming… It’s just distracting otherwise.

          • travbrad
          • 5 years ago

          Yeah it feels really constraining using 1 monitor after using 2 for so long. I have no interest in multi-monitor gaming but it’s great for productivity, and can even be nice for gaming sometimes (can have Teamspeak, steam windows, game maps, music player etc on 2nd monitor)

        • vargis14
        • 5 years ago

        I hate multi monitor setups also..they look ugly , clutter up a desk and bezels annoy me. This is why I am so into the 34″ IPS 21:9 3440×1440 monitors that are like having 2 old school 5:4 1720-1440 monitors with no freaking bezel. A perfect 101 pixels per inch.
        They seem to be the most optimal size for gaming, productivity and multitasking. Also you are only pushing 35% more pixels then a 27″ 1440p monitor that todays graphics cards can power. where 4k needs 2 780TI’s at least to get good frame rates on a 4k monitor. Just a perspective on a 4K monitor pixel pushing power you need vs a 3440-1440 and a 27inch 2560-1440 monitor. A 4k UHD monitor you have to push 8.25 MP “thats a lota GPU horsepower” where a 34″ super widescreen command center monitor has only 60% of the pixels to push at 4.95 MP a good 40% less GPU power needed. A 27″2560-1440 monitor has 3.69 MP. Here is a Linus tech tip video on a 34″ monitor…Now I am quoting him that 4k is dead to him…no delays here is the link [url<]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KnrxNfxRK_4[/url<]

      • Kougar
      • 5 years ago

      I’d rather have one high quality display than multiple mediocre ones. Particularly given how poorly Windows continues to handle multiple monitor setups.

      Rocking 30″ of 2560×1600 goodness. Hopefully by the time this monitor bites the dust 4K displays will be standard and they will be offering 120Hz variants.

        • JustAnEngineer
        • 5 years ago

        I’ve got a 1200×1600 UltraSharp 2001FP beside my 2560×1600 UltraSharp 3007WFP. Games run on the big screen simultaneously with browsers, etc. on the side.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 5 years ago

          I must have setup wrong when I’ve tried that in the past – usually when I fire up a game, the secondary display blanks out. Can you mouse out of the game to the browser or whatever? I’d think that would be bad.

            • JustAnEngineer
            • 5 years ago

            If I set a game to run “Windowed Fullscreen”, it runs at 2560×1600 on the main monitor and moving the mouse to the side moves the pointer right over to the other (1200×1600) screen.

            If I set the game to run “Fullscreen”, it runs on the main monitor, but the mouse cannot escape. Any applications running on the other monitor stay up and running, but you have to Alt-Tab to switch to them.

          • CreoleLakerFan
          • 5 years ago

          I’ve got two 1200×1600 UltraSharp 2001FPS beside my 2560×1600 UltraSharp 3011. It’s awesome for productivity, and some games (DX9) can run across all three with the SoftTH hack. It’s also good for use as stated – games on one large monitor and browser (or other) on side panel(s).

        • Wirko
        • 5 years ago

        I have a 24″ high quality display and a 17″ mediocre one beside it. Would miss the smaller one very much if someone stole it.

        • [+Duracell-]
        • 5 years ago

        What do you mean? Windows 7 and up handles multiple monitors pretty well for me. Windows 8 actually has background and taskbar options built in that you would normally need to get an app like DisplayFusion for.

          • Kougar
          • 5 years ago

          There’s been some articles about it both here and on Ars. The only one I remember personally was vanilla Win 8 had issues with corners grabbing the mouse but they supposedly fixed that in 8.1

            • [+Duracell-]
            • 5 years ago

            In 8.1, you can disable the corner stuff, and I believe that it doesn’t catch as easily between monitors. I usually run a game or full-screen app on one monitor, so I don’t really notice it. Edges still work well.

        • Freon
        • 5 years ago

        Do you sell your old monitors when you upgrade? I mean, just for desktop use it’s really nice to have a spare off to the side. I only ever game on a single.

          • Kougar
          • 5 years ago

          Nope, my old monitor drives a different computer now!

        • travbrad
        • 5 years ago

        The only problem with the large high resolution monitor solution is you then require much beefier/more expensive hardware for gaming, unless you are going to run at non-native res (which tends to look horrible and sort of defeats the purpose).

        With 2 monitors you still get a lot of desktop real-estate, but can still game at 1080/1200p native resolution. The downside of course is the display will tend to be smaller for gaming, and you’ll have bezels for desktop work.

        Now if you’re talking about 3 monitors/eyefinity/surround, I totally agree. You are going to need some powerful hardware either way, and a single monitor has a lot less issues than 3 monitors (bezels, driver problems, super wide aspect ratio, requiring special mounts for portrait mode)

        [quote<]I'd rather have one high quality display than multiple mediocre ones. [/quote<] You can easily get 2 high quality 1080p monitors for the price of a single 30" 1600p though, so that's not really the choice you'd be making.

      • f0d
      • 5 years ago

      still takes a bit of grunt to drive a 144hz monitor

      • derFunkenstein
      • 5 years ago

      GTX 760 + 1080p IPS display here. I spent more on the card than the display, but hope to jump up to a 2560×1440 IPS display from Monoprice. Bezels make multi-display a no-go for gaming for me, and even for productivity tasks I prefer a single big desktop to multiple smaller ones.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 5 years ago

      Because, you know, a $200 card can’t always render to a 1080p monitor at 60 fps native under all circumstances.

      • lckbrend
      • 5 years ago

      I using my computer at home and Single Display 23inch LED with 3D glasses(1920x1080DPI), why will i need dual display for? Watching youtube, reading internet and playing computer games and sometimes watch a 3D movies. One display is enough.

    • ClickClick5
    • 5 years ago

    Yay! I’m about average.

    I’m lacking on the WiFi though, still using a WRT54G. But I don’t wireless often, as my desktop, server/htpc, and PS4 are all hard wired. Only my Macbook runs on the wireless.

    • geekl33tgamer
    • 5 years ago

    Quite surprised by how many have said they have AMD FX Processors. For a CPU apparently no-one liked, it’s taken a 10% slice of the vote at the time of posting. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’m also the only sole user with a 3 x Crossfire set-up. Go me!!!

    • TwoEars
    • 5 years ago

    I only have a humble 4790k air cooled @ 4.8GHz…

    … but you forgot to ask how many people are running raid-0… I’m running 4 x samsung 512 evo ssd’s in raid-0 directly through the intel motherboard raid controller…. yes… with trim support…. it’s supported….

    Load times? What load times? ๐Ÿ˜€

      • ImSpartacus
      • 5 years ago

      RAID? On SSDs? I can’t even

      If you’re pounding sequentials all day, then RAID helps, but who actually does that?

      And if you really [i<]do[/i<] have that kind of workload, then why not just stop fucking around and get a PCIe SSD?

        • Whispre
        • 5 years ago

        I run my SSDs in Raid 1, my Mechanicals (with ssd cache drive in front) are Raid 10.

        Not sure what I’d need to be doing to want to run raid 0 for SSD’s.

        • TwoEars
        • 5 years ago

        PCIe SSD?

        I’ve got 2TB of storage space operating at +2000MB/s reads & writes…

          • brucethemoose
          • 5 years ago

          But 1 drive failure could kill your whole setup, and random reads/writes won’t be much faster.

            • TwoEars
            • 5 years ago

            These are samsung ssd’s, they are not going to fail. I trust four of them in raid-0 more than I would a single mechanical drive of consumer quality.

            But of course… important data is backed up to synology NAS with enterprise class drives. I would do that even if I was running raid-1.

            • ImSpartacus
            • 5 years ago

            I think it’s obvious that you trust them. The problem is that the consensus is that you probably shouldn’t trust them.

          • ImSpartacus
          • 5 years ago

          [url=http://images.anandtech.com/doci/8104/Screen%20Shot%202014-06-02%20at%2010.39.45%20PM.png<]PCIe SSDs have that capacity and sequential.[/url<]

        • Vaughn
        • 5 years ago

        Some people raid for extra capacity just not transfer speeds.

          • oldDummy
          • 5 years ago

          +1
          2 X 128GB SSD’s Raid0 = system drive.
          Now that SSD’s are coming down in price; Pretty soon might not need HDD’s.
          Transfer speed is a *bonus*.

      • UnfriendlyFire
      • 5 years ago

      I think a PCI-E or SATA-Express SSD would’ve been a better, safer choice than RAID0.

        • TwoEars
        • 5 years ago

        Have you seen the prices of 2TB PCI-E ssd’s?

        Besides – where would I put it? I’ve got a 4790k, SLI and a ZxR Soundcard. That fills up 8x + 8x +1x PCI-E lanes…

        Don’t think I haven’t thought this through you know….

    • Meadows
    • 5 years ago

    For Pete’s sake, TR, just what kind of sense does the “no, I use an external DAC” option make to the sound card question?

    Seriously? How does that even qualify as a “no”?

      • Alexko
      • 5 years ago

      Well, technically, it’s not a “card”.

        • Meadows
        • 5 years ago

        Dearth of options. Even the question’s wrong.

      • bluebadger
      • 5 years ago

      I have USB headphones so I clicked that since I’m pretty sure they have their own DAC…

      • sweatshopking
      • 5 years ago

      YOU’RESUCHANERD

        • Wirko
        • 5 years ago

        Is that a verb?

      • TwoEars
      • 5 years ago

      And why is there no option for *I use a ZxR soundcard AND and an external +$1000 DAC*? You know… for douchebags who like showing off.

      (or people who are really into hardware and audio… but nevermind)

        • brucethemoose
        • 5 years ago

        I don’t run into many people like you… Since you’ve probably tried both, do you like SBX more than Razer Surround?

          • TwoEars
          • 5 years ago

          Sorry, haven’t tried the razer surround.

          I like the creative cards for their gaming effects, the ZxR is the best-of-the-best for that in my opinion.

          If you focus more on music and don’t use and external DAC/AMP the Asus Essence II might be your pick.

      • FireGryphon
      • 5 years ago

      It’s not a sound card in the typical sense of the term, but then again, there are external DACs made by Creative and Asus, so the answers are unclear and misleading.

      • funko
      • 5 years ago

      i use the one built into my computer speakers, so i didn’t mind the question, but i see what you’re getting at.

    • atari030
    • 5 years ago

    Ugh….was too quick on the trigger for Primary OS….I dual boot, and it should be Linux, not Windows 7. The shame….

      • derFunkenstein
      • 5 years ago

      That’s OK i thought the RAM question was about storage for some reason, so my PC has between 1-1.99GB of memory. Whoops.

        • Meadows
        • 5 years ago

        Time to upgrade then, derFunk!

    • Kougar
    • 5 years ago

    Used to use an ASUS Xonar DX. Got tired of the software problems (Not even the UNI drivers fixed ’em all) and am simply using the onboard sound now.

      • crabjokeman
      • 5 years ago

      Did you try it under Linux?

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      Go back to it and try XonarSwitch. It’s much better than the stock Asus application.

        • Kougar
        • 5 years ago

        Isn’t that what the UNi drivers use already?

          • brucethemoose
          • 5 years ago

          I don’t think it comes with the drivers by default: you have to install it separately.

          [url<]http://maxedtech.com/xonarswitch-beta-testing/[/url<]

      • Chuckaluphagus
      • 5 years ago

      I’ve got the DSX, and I have to say I’ve never had any driver problems under Linux or Windows 7. Plus, it sounds [i<]so much better[/i<] through the same headphones than the motherboard audio.

        • Kougar
        • 5 years ago

        I would frequently experience all sound just “breaking”. I could sometimes bring it back by restarting the audio driver or disabling/renabling the speakers, but it wasn’t a guarantee. Usually I’d have to reboot to get all sound back. That happened with Win 7 and Win 8 installs, as well as 2 different speakers and my headphones.

        My second issue wasn’t as serious, but it was downright maddening to have the volume mixer settings break repeatedly. Applications playing sound would not be listed, sometimes it wouldn’t even show any active programs at all. This also persisted across multiple OS’s. How hard is it to actually make this stuff work : /

        Third problem was the mic input… same mic, but if I switched it to the Xonar people couldn’t hear me well. Realtek offers a much higher mic boost option in their drivers which lets people hear me just fine.

          • brucethemoose
          • 5 years ago

          Odd, my Xonar ST has a fantastic mic input.

          Sounds like the stock Asus application was bugging out… Asus software likes to do that.

            • Kougar
            • 5 years ago

            I did hear the jack ports were much better on the ST. But no way in heck I’d waste more money gambling to find out. The only way I’d buy another sound card was if they let me test it for a full month first.

            Well it “bugged out” a lot then on Win 7 and Win 8 both, and even with the Uni drivers. I even used Drive Fusion to nuke the driver files the installer leaves behind and install some of the older ones with no improvement to the problem. It’s possible the card itself has a hardware fault given it was bought in 2007, but again I’m not spending money to find out.

      • f0d
      • 5 years ago

      what software problems?
      i have heard a couple of other people mention software problems but i havnt come across any with my Xonar DX

      people just say “software problems ” and not actually mention WHAT problem

        • Kougar
        • 5 years ago

        I posted above!

          • f0d
          • 5 years ago

          we seemed to both have typed responses at same time

    • Forge
    • 5 years ago

    Finally I am special! Number of displays on my primary PC: More than 6 (1 votes)
    0%

      • chuckula
      • 5 years ago

      PICS OR IT DIDN’T HAPPEN! [just like that one dude who claims to be running the quad-SLI rig…]

        • Forge
        • 5 years ago

        I’m in the middle of cleaning up my computer room at the moment, but as soon as I’m done, I will.

        The Mac Mini off to the left with two screens and the docking station with another monitor off to the right really bring it together.

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      I know a few people with that many displays. The main problem with working that many displays is finding enough desktop space and cable management.

        • cygnus1
        • 5 years ago

        That many monitors in a confined space also tends to put out a fair amount of heat too.

        • Jafo
        • 5 years ago

        Those are problems I would gladly endure to be able to afford that many displays.

        • CreoleLakerFan
        • 5 years ago

        I have five in my home office – a 20-30-20 PLP setup, and a dual 23″. They are on separate desks. The PLP generates so much heat that I don’t do much gaming during the summer months, it gets uncomfortably warm in here with just those three running during the day.

    • crabjokeman
    • 5 years ago

    I’m the first person to take the poll with 3 cores (Phenom II X3 720).
    I couldn’t unlock my fourth core, but if I was able to would it count as 3 or 4 cores since it was a “free” core?

      • eofpi
      • 5 years ago

      Had it unlocked, I’d say 4, since that’d be the number in use.

        • crabjokeman
        • 5 years ago

        Yeah, that was my thinking.

      • bluebadger
      • 5 years ago

      My old gaming desktop has my Phenom II X3 720 BE now but man I loved that thing.
      Kept the BIOS version to the older version that could unlock the 4th core.

      See if you can revert to an older BIOS if you want to unlock your 4th core.
      In the end, I think I’ve been leaving it as a 3 core since that was still plenty for most things.

        • crabjokeman
        • 5 years ago

        No, I got it right when the 890 chipsets came out, so it had the first revision BIOS on it when I got it.
        It may even be the ironically named mobo *Biostar TA890FXE “UnlocKING”

        But thanks for the tip ๐Ÿ™‚

    • zdw
    • 5 years ago

    So digital audio from a logic board to an external DAC fits in where? TOSLINK optical to a home audio receiver is pretty nice.

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      You should use HDMI instead ๐Ÿ˜›

      But I’d say a receiver is just a giant external DAC + some extras.

      • Freon
      • 5 years ago

      I use optical straight to my Logitech speakers (long live my Z-5500’s! too bad they discontinued them…). I guess technically that’s an external DAC, but it’s not USB, so I chose motherboard audio. =\

      • MadManOriginal
      • 5 years ago

      I counted mine under external (USB) DAC…I just don’t happen to use USB.

    • Kingcarcas
    • 5 years ago

    Never had an Asus board but they always seemed the most popular

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      I own 2, and don’t plan on buying another one from them.

        • TwoEars
        • 5 years ago

        Get the ROG ones, it’s like the AMG of Mercerdes of M-division of BMW.

        All the people who REALLY care about the product are focusing their efforts there.

        I’ve have two ROG motherboards and they are aweseome.

          • oldDummy
          • 5 years ago

          [quote<]..they are aweseome[/quote<] Hmm..they are quite good. But Quirky. Rampage lV Genie would not install an OS with more than 4GB[?] memory installed. Drove me nuts, until I read the KB. Who would a thunk it?

            • MadManOriginal
            • 5 years ago

            You just need to rub the case the make the Genie work well.

            • hieu.noob
            • 5 years ago

            I have so many issues with my Extreme Rampage V. Whenever it goes down, I have no idea where to look for issues, or if I should blame the MOBO. Usually works itself out without much intervention from me, but I need to swap out this damn board ASAP.

            • oldDummy
            • 5 years ago

            First thing to check is ram.
            As with *most* MB issues.

          • Deanjo
          • 5 years ago

          [quote<]All the people who REALLY care about the product are focusing their efforts there. [/quote<] Then they should really try harder. I wouldn't compare the ROG to anything related to Mercedes. They are more like a Ford Focus with every single tacky 3rd party add-on attached to it.

          • Krogoth
          • 5 years ago

          ROG-tier boards just overengineered versions of their mainstream counterparts with a red-black color scheme.

          It only makes a difference if you are into hardcore overclocking.

          They are more like motorsports versions of mainstream auto manufacturers (Mopar, SVT, NISMO, TRD)

        • shaurz
        • 5 years ago

        I’ve had Asus, Gigabyte, ASRock… all of them had some problem or another (usually something dodgy with the USB).

      • crabjokeman
      • 5 years ago

      The last one I had, I didn’t care for. It didn’t do SATA hotplugging well and it overvolted the CPU at stock settings.
      Asus makes some nice high-end products, but for midrange value, I’ll take Biostar(AMD) or Gigabyte(Intel). Still missing Abit and Epox… ๐Ÿ™

        • brucethemoose
        • 5 years ago

        Their midrange motherboards are always quirky, aren’t they. My M4A79XTD has a design flaw where the power/reset buttons crash the PC. My Z87 board doesn’t like a lot of PCI stuff, and has some other weird BIOS quirks.

        • rxc6
        • 5 years ago

        Abit was amazing. I had Asus and MSI after they went away. I don’t like them as much.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 5 years ago

      I’ve always been partial to Gigabyte, going back 6-7 years. They tend to be a few bucks less but just as nice as equivalently-equipped Asus boards. ASRock takes that a step further, but I haven’t had one of their boards since the Intel P35 days.

        • Kougar
        • 5 years ago

        I’ve been buying Gigabyte since the 965P-DS3 days. That and the P35-DS3 were two of the best boards I remember getting from them, and GB was diligent about BIOS updates to fix broken BIOS issues. Didn’t hurt those boards made my E6300 sing at a rock stable 3.8Ghz, those were simpler times.

        I started getting unhappy with GB with the X58 boards. I almost didn’t go with GB for my Z87 upgrade, and in hindsight I wish I hadn’t. The UD5H has 7-header fan control (which was what sold me), yet the EasyTune fan software can’t remember fan settings nor control fan speed properly, and it breaks often! It can’t even change the CPU fan speed at all, and the UEFI fan settings are abysmal. Which brings me to several UEFI features such as HD UEFI that still don’t work on my system. I take it you’ve had none of these issues??

        I got to play with an ASUS Z97 system for awhile and I was quite impressed. It had some UEFI design quirks of its own I don’t care for, but I was suitably impressed enough that my next mainboard purchase is going to be ASUS. I haven’t used a hardware fan controller setup in years and I expect any modern motherboard to be capable of handling it for a silent DIY watercooled desktop.

        • vargis14
        • 5 years ago

        I have always liked Gigabyte and 3.5 years ago when i was building my 2600k rig the Gigabyte GA- P67-UD4-B3 gave me the most Power Phases and features for the money compared to ASUS. It also had dual BIOS so I was not afraid of bricking the board. It also had the nice SLI spacing making sure it had 2 slot between each card “this was important to me at the time since I went with 2 EVGA 560TI Super Clocked cards since they performed better then a single GTX580 in most cases by a good 20%” also I liked the way they had 1 of the single PCI-E 1x slot above the 1st PCI-E 16x slot. I think every Motherboard should have a 1x PCI-e slot above the 1st 16x slot.
        I have seen too many MB’s with a sound card wedged between 2 video cards because they did not configure their boards with a 1x slot ablove the 1st 16x slot.
        Another reason was it had a Old School bios that I was used to and I did not want to be a Guinea Pig to the new/ 1st UEFI Bios.

        I am still happy with the purchase since if and when PCI-E 2.0@8x becomes a bottleneck for a video card eventually I know I can get a used i7-3770k and i know my PCIE-E 2.0 slots will turn into 3.0 slots. I would much rather pay $100 in a year or 2 for a 3770k and get 3.0 bandwidth for better video cards then building a new rig since the performance jumps between Sandy, Ivy and Haswell on the desktop have not been much at all and I don’t expect Broadwell to be more then 5-10% faster then Haswell…..I am hoping the next single core performance boost like going from Lynnfield to Sandy Bridge will come with Skylake….but at 14nm and smaller I do not know what the overclocking will be like……worse then 22nm ? It a BIGAZZ ? mark

      • GTVic
      • 5 years ago

      Switched from ASUS to GigaByte, much better experience.

        • CreoleLakerFan
        • 5 years ago

        I went the other direction – Asus to GigaByte. Had to RMA three Gigabyte boards in a six months window a few years ago. Switched to Asus, haven’t had any issues since.

      • f0d
      • 5 years ago

      asus always been rock solid for me and i like the software (mostly the fan control software)

      i have had so much troubles with brands like asrock and msi that i dont bother with anything else but asus anymore

      not a single asus return

        • MadManOriginal
        • 5 years ago

        Has it been Heart Touching as well?

      • christos_thski
      • 5 years ago

      I’m still holding it in for them for releasing a P5K BIOS update that REMOVED (!) AHCI drive support, due to a licensing disagreement with intel. Who the hell releases BIOS updates that take features OUT of their motherboards? Asus, that’s who.

      PS: And they didn’t document it either. You had no way of knowing until it was too late and you could no longer revert to the full featured BIOS.

      • Meadows
      • 5 years ago

      I didn’t want to get one either (I avoid “popular choices” by default unless they’re necessary), but after having random little issues with ASRock, Gigabyte, and MSI, I gave in and bought an ASUS. No random little issues with this one, though it might just be luck.

      • bowman
      • 5 years ago

      I only buy the TUF boards since they seem to be the only ones out there where the company actually focuses on durability.

      I’ve had too many boards of too many makes die randomly for no reason, but the TUF boards have so far survived.

      • ZGradt
      • 5 years ago

      I’ve had good luck with Asus and ASRock as far as stability and BIOS navigation. For the most part. Some of their SATA options can be a bit hard to decipher though. Asus boards always seem to have the most features. When I was looking for a FM2 socket with IOMMU support, my only choices were Asus or Gigabyte. I always hear good things about Gigabyte, except for a few complaints about board layout. I may give them a shot with my next build just to shake things up. I’ve never cared for MSI. It seems like they’re always missing features and the BIOS interface is awful. But that may be because I get them when I want a super cheap board. I don’t have any experience with their higher end stuff.

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      ASUS boards are good for the most part. They tend to carry extra little stuff like ECC support, but ASUS board carry a noticeable premium if you want the higher-end models.

      In the era of system-on-chips, motherboard vendors are mostly homogenized in terms of features and performance.

      The only noticeable difference is the quality of inductors, capacitors, MOSFET on the board if you want to do some hardcore overclocking.

      • travbrad
      • 5 years ago

      I’ve never had a problem with an Asus board so don’t fix what isn’t broken is my logic.

      Admittedly it’s been about a decade since I had a non-ASUS board, but most of them back then had major issues (failing/fried boards, Nforce 2 driver nightmares, etc)

    • jdaven
    • 5 years ago

    Almost everyone is using an SSD. Only about 11% fall in the “I’ll wait until SSDs fall under $.x/GB” category. Man, you don’t know what you are missing by not using an SSD.

      • Andrew Lauritzen
      • 5 years ago

      Yeah the question I always ask holdouts is: do you know even a single person why has upgraded to an SSD and regretted it? Still the best upgrade you can do to practically any PC for practically any use.

        • rahulahl
        • 5 years ago

        Yep.
        Even the cheapest SSD are a big upgrade.
        I got Crucial M4 128GB years ago, and never regretted it. Hell, even 64GB would be better than having a big mechanical drive for the OS.

          • brucethemoose
          • 5 years ago

          Even my bottom barrel 128GB Agility 4 feels way faster than many mechanical drive I’ve seen

        • Entroper
        • 5 years ago

        No, but I know lots of people who upgraded to an SSD and then filled it up almost immediately. I’ve been holding out for 512 GB drives to become affordable. Which they recently have, and now I’m waiting for Windows 9 so that I don’t have to install Windows twice in the same year.

      • Kingcarcas
      • 5 years ago

      I do, but i ran out of space………..

      • crabjokeman
      • 5 years ago

      I’ve been holding off for financial reasons. Now that I have steady employment, I will probably jump on the bandwagon, but I’m glad I waited until the prices were more reasonable. It’s good to know that it’s a worthwhile upgrade.

      Before I get the SSD though, I’ll probably get a new display since that’s a lot more important. My current one is a crappy 17″ 1280×1024 TN panel with analog only connection (my good display died).

        • jdaven
        • 5 years ago

        IMHO, the three greatest upgrades of my tech hobby career have been:

        Dial-up to broadband internet
        CRT to LCD
        Mechanical to solid-state drives

        So yes, get that LCD upgraded and then go get an SSD. You won’t regret it.

          • Narishma
          • 5 years ago

          CRT to LCD isn’t necessarily an upgrade. CRTs have many advantages over LCDs that may or may not matter to you, like lower latency, better color reproduction and much better handling of different resolutions.

            • MadManOriginal
            • 5 years ago

            Yeah, maybe ten years ago when good CRTs were inexpensive and LCDs still sucked. Not so much any more. And the pure sharpness at native resolution is a huge advantage for LCDs.

            • Krogoth
            • 5 years ago

            A decent CRT is faster and superior at color accuracy than the best LCD you can get your hands on. A high-end CRT is unrivaled.

            The real reason why CRTs were phased out is because of eWaste and they are very messy to manufacture (CRT use a ton of heavy metals.)

            Try getting a good CRT and compare it to a LCD. It is a night and day difference in color accuracy, image quality and speed. Granted, that CRTs are far more sensitive to EMI and flaws in RAMDAC/TMDS than LCDs.

            • Ninjitsu
            • 5 years ago

            CRTs also occupy a ton of space and put out a lot of radiation. I hate IPS response times but they’re much easier to clean and I know there’s much less radiation (only some UV, i believe?)

            • MadManOriginal
            • 5 years ago

            Don’t get all snooty with me Kroger. I had a Sony 17se1 in 1994 – they were not cheap then. I eventually followed it up with a 19″ Compaq branded Diamondtron, another aperture grille monitor. I know good CRTs, but I would not want to go back to one even with the few advantages they have. There are some advantages but disadvantages as well. The sharpness of LCD is simply unrivaled by any CRT, they do not go out of focus like CRTs. CRTs can get permanent pixel burn-in. LCDs can most certainly have accurate color.

            Also, there is no such thing as a ‘good CRT’ that you can buy new any more.

            • JustAnEngineer
            • 5 years ago

            My last two CRT monitors were aperture grill models from ViewSonic: a superb P95f+ and a slightly-older P815. Neither one is a match for a good LCD monitor produced in the past decade.

            • Krogoth
            • 5 years ago

            You must be suffering some degree of color blindness and/or were driving those CRTs behind a video card with subpar RAMDACs.

            CRTs have always been superior to LCDs in terms of color accuracy and speed. The problem is that most people don’t care enough about those perks and are willing overlook them in favor of the LCD’s primary strengths which is perfect screen geometry, consumes far less power/volume, less sensitive to EMI and can use digital inputs.

            • JustAnEngineer
            • 5 years ago

            You must be making an awful lot of incorrect assumptions about what other people are doing.

            • Krogoth
            • 5 years ago

            I have seen both quality CRTs and LCD units in action.

            LCDs are not a complete upgrade from a CRT. The lack of true blacks hurts LCDs (most apparent in lighting effects and gamma) and they are slower at switching colors than CRT units (granted it is only noticeable with fast-paced animation).

            Despite this, the strengths of LCDs outweigh the strengths of CRTs for masses.

            • Krogoth
            • 5 years ago

            CRTs are just as sharp as LCD. The problem has little to do with the display itself rather than the quality of RAMDAC/TDMS on the video card that drives it.

            TDMS are far less sensitive to EMI and don’t require as much shielding. That’s why the imagine quality for digital output is far more consistent than analog output. RAMDAC quality is a hit-or-miss with most video cards. Matrox had a reputation for paying more attention to it versus other vendors back in the day. Nvidia had a nasty bout of RAMDAC issues with their RIVA TNT to Geforce 1-2 family.

            Color accuracy is something that LCDs cannot match a CRT at. It is most notable with gamma and blacks. Lighting and shading effects in games are “off” with a LCD display. It is much more noticeable with a side by side comparison.

            You can get good used CRTs, but the problem is that there aren’t many left since the people who want that are holding onto their units.

            It is a damm shame too since SEDs/FEDs could have the true replacement for CRTs, but the tech is trapped in patent trolling hell.

            • JustAnEngineer
            • 5 years ago

            Stay away from nasty TN LCD panels, and you’ll be okay for color reproduction.

          • Krogoth
          • 5 years ago

          You must have an aging and/or poor quality CRT unit and upgrade to a high-end LCD to even consider LCD an upgrade unless you wanted to cut back on desktop volume and mass. ๐Ÿ˜‰

          • jihadjoe
          • 5 years ago

          Not there for diskettes/cassettes to mechanical hard drives?
          IMO that was a far bigger upgrade than even mechanical to SSD.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 5 years ago

      Yes, I love my SSD. Upgraded my wife to one about 6 weeks ago and she said it was like I gave her a brand new computer. If she notices the difference and isn’t very technically inclined, everyone will notice the difference. Her machine wasn’t slow before the upgrade (i5 4430, 8GB of RAM, GTX 660), but the speed of apps opening has been a joy to her.

        • Wirko
        • 5 years ago

        [quote<]SSD. Upgraded my wife[/quote<] Was she forgetful before?

          • chยตck
          • 5 years ago

          nah, probably just a little slow

          • derFunkenstein
          • 5 years ago

          LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL I meant her PC buuuuuuttt…..

      • Rakhmaninov3
      • 5 years ago

      Man my computer would lose the authentic antique feel if I added an SSD.

      • Airmantharp
      • 5 years ago

      In other news, I just upthumbed jdaven, while at the same time he has a positive score for the same post. The odds are astronomical, I know.

      • kureshii
      • 5 years ago

      Friends don’t let friends use HDDs for system disks.

      • ronch
      • 5 years ago

      Made the jump to SSD last December. SSD prices are falling all the time but I think today we’ve reached a point where SSDs are cheap enough and won’t be much cheaper unless you wait 5 more years.

      • unclesharkey
      • 5 years ago

      My wife wants and SSD drive in her computer, the only problem is that I would need to purchase a 1 gig SSD drive since she has so much stuff on her computer. I keep telling her to wait for the prices to come down ๐Ÿ˜‰

        • jdaven
        • 5 years ago

        I think you mean 1 terabyte SSD. If you look at the polls above, you will see that many buy a 128-512 GB as an OS/apps drive and then store files on a mechanical drive. You can get a 128 GB SSD for well under $100 and a 1 TB mechanical drive for around $50.

          • unclesharkey
          • 5 years ago

          Yes 1 terabyte…had a brain fart. I am pretty sure I would need a tb ssd because the hard drive is so full.

      • BIF
      • 5 years ago

      [quote<]"Almost everyone is using an SSD. Only about 11% fall in the "I'll wait until SSDs fall under $.x/GB" category. Man, you don't know what you are missing by not using an SSD."[/quote<] I agree. For desktop. For laptop, which is not the subject of the above poll, I think the math works out a bit differently. I see 1TB SSDs are now available, but even on my laptop I still need more capacity. And since my laptop is a 2011 model that already has two spinning 1TB drives inside, I'd like to keep the cost of a couple 1.5TB SSDs reasonably low. When they finally become available.

        • UnfriendlyFire
        • 5 years ago

        My laptop has a spare 2.5″ drive bay because it uses a mSATA SSD.

        I’ve also seen a handful of laptops that have M.2 ports.

          • jdaven
          • 5 years ago

          Also SD cards are pushing to higher capacities. Technically it is internal.

      • Kharnellius
      • 5 years ago

      Would like to upgrade to an SSD, but I am having a dog of a time finding what the connectivity is for my existing drive. I’m assuming mSata, but not certain. Am I over thinking this?

      Here is what I own:
      [url<]http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230648[/url<]

      • bthylafh
      • 5 years ago

      Oh, but I /do/ know what I’m missing – two laptops and my work computer have SSDs, and my wife’s desktop has a hybrid drive. I’m just too cheap to upgrade my 1.5 TB spinning disk.

    • rahulahl
    • 5 years ago

    Not quite sure if that the option of Upload speed of less than 2Mbps does justice to my 0.3 Mbps upload speed.

    Other than that, pretty interesting results.
    I didn’t expect so few people to be using stock coolers. Even though I know its a tech site.. still.
    And 28% of people have 2560x resolution.
    And nearly 50% have 16GB+ ram.

      • brucethemoose
      • 5 years ago

      0.5mbps here.

      I wonder why lots of people use aftermarket cooler, yet leave their CPUs at stock speeds.

        • The Egg
        • 5 years ago

        Noise

          • brucethemoose
          • 5 years ago

          But then why not do a minor OC or undervolt as well? Locked CPUs maybe?

    • Andrew Lauritzen
    • 5 years ago

    Wow the RAM results are a bit surprising… almost 50% with 16GB+ so far. May normalize as more results come in, but that’s the one that surprised me the most.

      • Kougar
      • 5 years ago

      I’m more surprised there wasn’t a standalone 16GB and 32GB option in the poll. 16GB of DDR3 is pretty cheap these days and seems a fairly common option on new systems.

        • Khali
        • 5 years ago

        I’m running 32GB myself. It would be nice to see who else is doing the same. My original reason for going that high was to be work related but that did not pan out so now I am utilizing it on Distributed Computing projects.

          • Kougar
          • 5 years ago

          Also running 32GB, didn’t want to find out 16GB wasn’t sufficient so I invested in a 32GB kit when I built my Haswell system. Given I keep my desktop around for roughly 5 years it only made sense anyway.

          So far I mostly use it for virtual machines. Actually received some out-of-memory warnings from HyperV not that long back!

            • Terra_Nocuus
            • 5 years ago

            I’d’ve gone w/ 32GB, but mITX maxes out at 16 ๐Ÿ™

      • Philldoe
      • 5 years ago

      I would bet the vast majority of that 16+ is actually just 16. That seems to be the norm for most people, though frankly I have 8 and I’m yet to see myself hit more than 4.5gb of ram usage unless I have more than 1 VM running.

        • Flying Fox
        • 5 years ago

        My kajillion Chrome tabs have been screaming bloody murder on my 8gig system. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

          • Prototyped
          • 5 years ago

          That’s easy: use Firefox instead. ๐Ÿ™‚ Far more memory efficient.

          • cygnus1
          • 5 years ago

          I was gonna say, my chrome tabs tend to use about 8GB all by themselves. I tend to have triple digit tabs open and keep it open for days at a time. Reboots tend to only happen for installing windows updates.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 5 years ago

      I am guessing that a lot of people got DDR3 16GB kits when they were under $100.

        • christos_thski
        • 5 years ago

        Yes. Those of us who were out of cash at the time are banging our heads for missing that opportunity- hard. Could be years before we see these kind of prices again….

          • Prototyped
          • 5 years ago

          Or who were on DDR2.

          Regarding the prices, I smell (alternately) dumping by the Korean manufacturers, followed by collusion to fix prices. Things all these memory manufacturers have been heavily fined for such activity several times in the past.

        • ludi
        • 5 years ago

        Yup. I built my i5-2500K system in October 2011. $104.99 for a Corsair 16GB kit, there was no reason to go with anything less.

      • Krogoth
      • 5 years ago

      I was expecting more of that population to be in the 4GiB-8GiB range. I was expecting 16GiB+ crowd to be fairly sizable since DDR3 was ultra-cheap a few years ago and so many power users took advantage of it and got extra DIMMs.

      • the
      • 5 years ago

      I have one with 96 GB (well it should have 128 GB but a par of DIMMs failed), a 48 GB system, a 32 GB system and another with 16 GB here.

      • Rakhmaninov3
      • 5 years ago

      Well it said “system memory capacity” and not “how much RAM is in your computer?” I was thinking it meant “how much max RAM will your system hold if maxed” so I guess my answer wasn’t “correct” cuz I only have 4GB……

    • The Egg
    • 5 years ago

    Does a factory OC on the GPU count?

      • bluebadger
      • 5 years ago

      I wanted to change my response after I remembered my GPU was factory OC…

      • slowriot
      • 5 years ago

      I wouldn’t count it. To me the nature of that question is really “Are you OCing one of these components?” which means you, the user, were involved. If it comes at the speed from manufacturer it is “stock.” As it has been quality certified and the “OC” is covered by warranty.

        • GTVic
        • 5 years ago

        Yes, OC on the packaging is more marketing than anything.

    • ApockofFork
    • 5 years ago

    If you click right below the vote button you get taken to completely different page (it is the “More Polls” page). I did this twice. I would encourage the webdevs to fix that to save future poll takers some pain.

      • crabjokeman
      • 5 years ago

      I also did it tiwce. I think it even runs into the vote button.

    • Mikael33
    • 5 years ago

    Heh, so far I’m the 3% of people still using a Phenom II, my other stats are more in line with the voting majority so far.

      • crabjokeman
      • 5 years ago

      Edit: Reply fail (sorry)

      • crabjokeman
      • 5 years ago

      Yeah, I have an X3 720. With the exception of video encoding, which I do a couple of times a month at most, I don’t find myself wishing for a faster CPU.

        • Chuckaluphagus
        • 5 years ago

        Same, with an X4 965. I figure that, if I ever do start to think it’s feeling pokey, I’ll finally try clocking it up to 4 GHz and see whether that staves off the inevitable major system overhaul another few years.

          • chuckula
          • 5 years ago

          For everyone who thinks I’m Chuckaluphagus, just remember he’s running a phenom II…. so we’re either not the same person or really really conflicted.

            • Chuckaluphagus
            • 5 years ago

            … And now I’m remembering the ending reveal to “Fight Club”, and wondering whether my life is much, much more complicated than I think it is.

          • Mikael33
          • 5 years ago

          My 965BE C3 stepping is clocked at 4 ghz most of the time, can do 4.1 but not much point. I use an overclocked 7850(1100 core, 5400 mem, makes it about equal to a 7870 according to benchmarks I’ve ran) and have a 1440P monitor so my GPU is my bottleneck for gaming. The only time I really wish I had a faster cpu is when I do audio production (I record music) and that’s one thing where you CPU can never be too fast.

      • kvndoom
      • 5 years ago

      Joining you with an X4 965. Probably going to stick with it for 2 more years.

      • Prototyped
      • 5 years ago

      Me too! But I have a weird setup with hardware generations going back to (yeah) 2007.

      Phenom II X6 1055T, the 95 W SKU, on a Gigabyte GA-M85M-US2H.

      This system originally had a Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition (the sort with unlockable cores). I used to run Linux on the desktop and was wary of AMD’s core logic at the time so I bought a board with integrated NVIDIA graphics. DDR3 wasn’t as cheap back then and NVIDIA had stopped making chipsets for both AMD and Intel so there were no new boards (equipped with DDR3 DIMM slots) with NVIDIA graphics.

      I didn’t have much room to myself (lodging with a family so I only had the one bedroom) so I opted for microATX.

      I ran it with a third core enabled but that became unstable after a couple of years. So two years ago I fleabayed the fastest widely available 95W Phenom — the X6 550. Around the same time I bought a WQHD monitor that the onboard graphics wouldn’t drive at full resolution — so I bought a used Radeon HD5770 — Asus I think.

      Then last year I replaced the ancient boot drive — a Raptor WD740GD that was a hand me down — with a 240 GB Kingston V300 SSD — a few months before Kingston’s betrayal of newer customers. And also last year I upgraded the hard drive to a 3 TB unit — though Backblaze claim to have seen high failure rates on these units.

      So I have a mishmash of parts going back to 2007 technology (though everything is at most 5 years old now). It’s served me well — about the most strenuous thing it does is run a couple VMs and the occasional ffmpeg transcode job. The only complaint I have is noise, but that’s down to the 80mm case fans in a case I now regret buying — a SilverStone SUGO SG01B.

      • Ninjitsu
      • 5 years ago

      Core 2 and Phenom II users are interestingly very close in number.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 5 years ago

        Core 2 way outsold Phenom II, so my guess is there’s two things at work:

        * AMD fans clinging to the old Phenom II because FX isn’t that great so there’s no real upgrade path that’s an actual upgrade
        * Both are still “fast enough” for non-gaming tasks for people who don’t upgrade frequently.

          • Chuckaluphagus
          • 5 years ago

          Pretty much. Although, realistically, it’s also still fast enough for gaming tasks as well. I haven’t had any trouble running anything yet. I tend to play stuff like XCOM (the newer one) or Legend of Grimrock recently, but it didn’t balk at Planetary Annihilation either.

    • DPete27
    • 5 years ago

    Oops, messed up on “Processor Series”. I voted ix-5xxx because my dyslexia told me that meant i5…. I have an i5-3570K.

    • yogibbear
    • 5 years ago

    This poll has reminded me that I haven’t upgraded Windows 8 to 8.1…. and every other day or so I keep ignoring the dialogue window that takes over my PC telling me to Update now. ๐Ÿ™

      • rahulahl
      • 5 years ago

      Im still on Win 8 because the theme I use “Base” has some issues on Win 8.1

      • meerkt
      • 5 years ago

      Just know that the update is actually a new OS install over an existing one. It’s nothing like a clean SP-like update.

    • Neutronbeam
    • 5 years ago

    Finished! Did I win?! Ooooh…it’s a SURVEY. Drat!

      • nanoflower
      • 5 years ago

      Yeah, when he said “Good luck” I was thinking ‘oh.. there’s a prize..’ and I kept looking for the prize as I answered the questions. No prize, unless you count my being able to remember what my setup consists of.

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