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Buying a computer

by ArchAngel1294
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Buying a computer

★★★★ Novice

Hello. I hope I've put this in the right section.

 

My current computer is getting on in years. I bought it because it's designed as a gaming computer. It's done well with sims 4 and all the expansions up until recently when it started lagging in game. I think it must be a combination of age of the computer and too many expansions. It's also been lagging in Photoshop. So I'm looking to buying a new computer, but I'm not sure what specs too look for. I don't remember what made this computer good for gaming when I bought it.

 

So I thought I'd ask here: what kind of specs would you look for in a computer nowadays for huge games like sims?

Message 1 of 6 (137 Views)

Re: Buying a computer

@ArchAngel1294  Yes, you're definitely in the right place.

 

The specs you'd want will depend on how much you can spend, whether you're willing to do simple upgrades yourself, and to some extent whether you want a laptop or a desktop.  Some features are nice to have but unnecessary; others don't matter to Sims 4 but will make other tasks much easier.  Without a budget or any idea what else you'd want in this computer, it's hard to say what you should look for, but here's a general idea.

 

Graphics card:  This is the single most important component in determining how well a computer will run TS4.  If you want to futureproof for the packs that haven't been released yet, and you'd like to always be able to use ultra settings, you'd want at least an Nvidia 1060 6 GB, or a 1660 (without the ti boost) in the newer series, or an AMD RX 580.  A 1050 ti or a 1650 will run all packs on ultra settings now, but that may not be the case in the future, especially if you like using a lot of custom content.

 

Processor:  There are too many to list, but any new computer that has a strong enough graphics card will also have a strong enough processor.

 

Memory:  TS4 only needs 8 GB RAM, but you may want 16 GB for multitasking purposes, especially while you play.  RAM is very easy to install though, so you can always add more yourself if you'd like.

 

Storage:  This will depend entirely on what else you want to do with this computer.  A single 256 GB drive will fit Windows and TS4, plus your saves, builds, cc, etc., but not much more.  512 GB might not be enough if you have a lot of other data, i.e. music or photo collections, you want to store.  But you could also use an external drive.

 

If you'd like help picking something out, or just a few examples of what to look for, just list your budget and country, as well as anything else you'd want to do with the computer.

 

And if you'd like to know whether there's anything you can do to help your current computer, please run a dxdiag and attach the results to a post.

 

https://help.ea.com/en-us/help/pc/how-to-gather-dxdiag-information/

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I don't work for EA. I'm just trying to help fellow players with their games.
Message 2 of 6 (106 Views)

Re: Buying a computer

★★★★ Novice

Hi!

Thank you so much for all that info! My current computer is a asus laptop with these stickers on it:

intel inside Core i7

NVIDIA Geforce GTX 670MX

Asus G75V HDMI

CPU:Intel Core i7 - 3630M, 2.4GHz,

ODD: 6X Blu-ray

Memory: 16GB

OS: WIN8

HDD: 1TB+256G(88D)

nvidea 30TV PLAY 3D

Energy Star

 

If I'm able to improve this computer, that would be the best option. Though I wonder if it can be done on a laptop? I've attached the dxdiag. Thank you so much for your help!

If I can't improve this one, my budget would be $1000-2000 for a new desktop.

Message 3 of 6 (79 Views)

Re: Buying a computer

@ArchAngel1294  Some laptop components can be upgraded or replaced, like RAM or hard drives.  But the component that's likely holding you back the most here is the graphics card.  It looks like your particular model does technically support an upgrade, but likely only to a slightly better card, i.e. a 675MX or maybe something in the 700M series.

 

If you could get your hands on a compatible card, it would probably be used, and there's no guarantee that it would be in better condition than your current one.  Plus, you'd need to actually install it, which requires pretty much completely disassembling the laptop, and you'd need to find a BIOS update that would support the upgrade.  There's no guarantee that this process would work, and you probably wouldn't get the kind of performance you're looking for.

 

There are a couple of things you can do to improve performance without upgrading your hardware though.  The first is to update your graphics card driver.  Yours is dated 2013, and Nvidia released one for your card in April.  You can download it from here:

 

https://www.nvidia.com/Download/driverResults.aspx/145873/en-us

 

It's also a good idea to clean the fans, if you haven't done so recently.  One of the reasons a game might lag is if the laptop is overheating, in which case the components would throttle to compensate.  Cleaning the fans should be as simple as removing the bottom cover and dusting.

 

Finally, you have a number of failed Windows updates.  Even if you're not interested in installing Windows 10, it's still a good idea to keep your current OS up to date.  You should be able to manually run updates through Settings, although I don't have access to an 8.1 install, so I can't tell you exactly where to click.

 

If you find you still can't get the performance you're looking for in this laptop, I could link a few desktops for you that would do quite well.  Just as an example I found for someone else, this one is currently $830 on Amazon.  Its hardware is strong enough that it should always run TS4 on the highest graphics settings, with plenty of room to spare.  Its main drawback is that it only has 8 GB memory, but a matching RAM stick might cost you $40 and would be extremely simple to install.

 

https://www.amazon.com/SkyTech-Blaze-Gaming-Computer-Desktop/dp/B07RL4K6CN

 

With your budget, you could afford significantly better hardware, of course, but this is a good place to start thinking about what you want.

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I don't work for EA. I'm just trying to help fellow players with their games.
Message 4 of 6 (60 Views)

Re: Buying a computer

★★★★ Novice

Hi!

 

I had no idea new decent computers could cost less than $1000. And I don't have the money now - I was going to save up for a year or more. So I'll definitely try these things out to improve my current computer. I'll do the dusting and download that new graphics card driver. With the windows update - would it improve my gameplay to update to windows 10? What does it cost? And will it affect what i have saved and installed on my computer? How do I go about it?

 

thank you!

Message 5 of 6 (33 Views)

Re: Buying a computer

@ArchAngel1294  I'm not sure it would help performance all that much to upgrade to Windows 10, and it might not help at all.  I was just saying that even if you're not making that leap, you should definitely still run all the updates for Windows 8.1, because that will help performance, in-game and otherwise.

 

I know that people on Windows 7 have been offered an upgrade to 10 for free, but I'm not sure that's true for 8 or 8.1, the difference being that 7 will no longer be supported after this January.  8.1 will be phased out too, but not quite so soon.  Otherwise, a (legitimate) retail key for Windows 10 can be as cheap as $110 if you just need the code and can create the install medium yourself.  It's not actually cheap, but still better than the $140 you'd pay normally.  On the other hand, it's overall probably a better idea to save the money and put it towards the new computer you're planning to get.

 

Speaking of which, the model I linked isn't even the cheapest good option for Sims 4.  You don't need a 1660 ti to run the game, or a Ryzen 2600, although you might appreciate the extra power if you're planning on playing other games.  If you waited for the right sale, you could probably get something that would run all current and future TS4 packs on ultra settings for under $700, not including the monitor.

 

Whenever you're ready to buy that new computer, you're welcome to come back and ask for help picking one out, or for an opinion on a couple of models you have in mind.  And if you'd like to keep troubleshooting on your current laptop, feel free to keep asking, although I'm not sure how much better performance is going to be given its hardware.  You should still be able to play on medium-high settings reasonably well though, as long as the components are holding up.

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I don't work for EA. I'm just trying to help fellow players with their games.
Message 6 of 6 (29 Views)
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