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Enter here for a chance to win a free just cause 2 license As you might have seen on our front page, nvidia has graced us with 20 licenses for avalanche studio's fine sandboxstyle thirdperson shooter just cause 2 to coincide with the release of the new geforce gtx 460.We're going to give away those licenses to our readers.We typically run such giveaways from the front page, but we thought we'd try something a little different this time.So here's the deal. To enter for a chance to win one of the licenses, you must post in this thread to tell us about your very first computer build or upgrade.Since you http://www.dpmp.com.au/evening-dresses.html need a gaming pc to play just cause 2, we assume you've had a chance to get your hands dirty at least once.What did you build?What did you try upgrading?How did it go?Did you set anything on fire, or was the upgrade everything you hoped it would be?If you've never posted in the forums before, now's your chance.Keep in mind registering a forum account allows you to post in the comments for our frontpage articles, as well. Now for some ground rules.Each participant may only post one story.We'll be enforcing quality standards in the thread as we do in the rest of the tr forums.That means qualifying posts must a)Be ontopic, b)Not contain so many spelling and syntax errors as to be unreadable, and c)Be free of profanity.If you attempt to game the system by entering more than once, you will be disqualified, and your ip may be banned from the forums and the frontpage comments. (We can tell;Trust us. )Also, this thread is only for submissions.If you want to ask questions, discuss the contest, or comment on someone's submission, please head over to the contest discussion thread. The winners will be the 18 people whose upgrade stories tr editors judge to be the most fun and/or interesting.Additionally, back porch moderators emkubed and captain ned will each get a license for helping us moderate the contest and keep things going smoothly. We will be accepting submissions for the Wedding Dresses http://www.dpmp.com.au/ seven days following the creation of this thread.The winners will be announced a couple of days after the thread is closed. Update:We've now Ball Gown Wedding Dresses announced the winners. What am i the first person to post?Perhaps not.Oh well.My story isn't all that interesting, perhaps i was lucky.Or not. Back in my senior year of high school i decided to build my own computer after my olden hp ze4500 went kaput.And by kaput i mean felt my heel.Dang thing had a crackedScreenbut still worked.Eventually it gave up the ghost.I thought i'd reuse the parts in it, amd athlon xp 2500+ with a nifty unlocked multiplier, the replacement 15"Screen(Still looking for an lvds to dvi connector! )The hard drive. But it turns out the boot gotThe hard drive, and the processor found a home in a friend's PC for a mediocre 30$.So i decided to make my own one. As a matter of fact, when researching computer parts for this first build of my life an old friend of mine lead me to tr where i found all the benchmarks to make a decision final.I've been here ever since.2005 I believe, yea.I decided, as i was a poor high school kid with an allowance barely more than i'm making now, an amd sempron 2800+ was on the menu from a local shop, and an msi k8n neo3 motherboard with support for both agp and pcie.With it i bought 512mb of ddr1 and a geforce 4 and off to the races i went.An elcheapo case with a 500w power supply from godknowswhere was the enclosure of choice. Halo for the pc was my game of choice.Without bump mapping, specular, and a resolution of 1024x768 was what i was limited to.Still didn't stop me from enjoying it.Eventually i went to the same brick'n mortar place where i got the processor and purchased a radeon x300se.Suddenly i was blown away by the shiny surfaces of blood gulch and ambient lighting of the banshee's bombs.After a while i decided halo was enough for me and moved on to broader horizons.Half life 2 and lineage 2 followed suit, and once again desired a new upgrade.On newegg i found a nice deal for a radeon x700 for 100$, which after exhaustive studying on tr's own benchmarks, i found a good buy and snatched it up.Oh the glory days had come. Untill the fan started whining.Choked with dust and barely able to move, i took matters into my own hands which is an entirely bad idea. "I'll vacuum it! "The little ignorant child in me said.So i did.Slapped it back in.Nothing. Switched ram out and stillNothing. No fan, no beeps, no sweeps, no magic smoke,Nothing.Well.I had a hunch, so i bought a brand new motherboard from ecs for less than 60$ and another sempron, this time a 3200+ on 90nm with sse3 instructions.Exchanging some parts, i found that the graphics card, processor and motherboard were dead. With a 7600gt, it lasted me a good two years untill an upgrade.In which the psu belched magic smoke.But that's another story. Yep, that's that.What did i learn? Don't vacuum computer parts. Don't blame msi, it was your own ignorance, fool. Sapphire radeons Where Do You Get Formal Dresses are solid(Personal experience).That x300se still works today as a backup, even with a missing chip i unfortunately cracked off the back side(Cough). Can't wait to read other's stories. My first build was back around 2002, consisting of an athlon xp 2500, a asus a7nx8e deluxe(Soundstorm whooho! ), 512 MB DDR400 and.A glorious geforce 2 mx 400.I guess my sentiments about that video card should be omitted.Building the whole system took me some time because i was mostly reading the manuals quite a few times and checking that i wasn't forgetting anything, after all this was kinda more fragile than lego.After everything was plugged and triple checked, i hit the power button and.It beeped once! .After a few months, i was looking for some reviews of video cards and got here to tr and the rest is history by now. The internet wrote: "[The] 360 starts at the factory, moves to retail shelves, into consumer's homes, back to Microsoft.I moved up from an 8086 based ibm ps2.While i don't remember much about the pc i built, since it didn't take long to start upgrading different parts, i do remember the process of picking and ordering parts for it.I have to give the obligatory nod to computer shopper magazine from back in the day, the one that was nearly the size of a phone book and that my mailman refused to deliver.The other part of the process was using that ps2 with a 28.8 modem to use DosLynx, through a SLIP connection, through a local BBS that had internet to hit up web sites of different manufacturers for info.I specifically remember checking out the fic website and looking at different motherboards pictures, which i thought at the time was amazing.To even look at images, you had to 'click' on one and the computer would go to a full screen mode and show you that one image. Good times.Learned a lot. The very first rig i built 100% by myself was 9 or so years ago as a freshman in college.When i say"By myself,"I guess i'm not being entirely honest.A gaming pc was all i wanted for christmas, and i managed to talk my family and everyone i knew to contributing.I was coming off of a gaming hiatus.I hadn't been into consoles since the end of the super nintendo era, and my parents' pentium 200 mmx was barely enough to run halflife and they didn't upgrade till i moved out.Newegg didn't exist at the time, and i'm not sure how i managed to coordinate it all.I have to guess at the specs but i think i managed to end up with an athlon 1300 and 128 megs ram(Sdr).The board was the first gen nforce with the onboard video.I was able to upgrade that a few years later to a radeon 9500.Eventually, i also upped the ram to a quarter gig and an 1800+.This was the rig i ran halflife 2 as a slideshow at 800x600.I did keep most of it in various configurations until i eventually had to throw out the core when i got married and we moved out of the college town i lived in.It had been collecting dust waiting for a worthy project, but we didn't have the cash for things like extra power supplies and harddrives.The case is still in use.It's housing my dev server. I did homework on it, stayed up till dawn playing ut99 and civ3, a bit of.Of course.That little box got me through college.Even if i don't win, it's nice to think back on it. My first upgrade was from a dell(My first pc)Early in 2006, when i was a freshman at purdue.I wanted a graphics card to give me a boost over the intel graphics in the dell and to run games the igp refused to run.Having no past experience in building pcs i went ahead and got a 7800gt, along with a more powerful 550w psu.I was in for a surprise when i tried to install the card into a pci slot and it wouldn't fit.When i found out i needed a motherboard with a pcie slot i quickly ordered an atx nforce 4based board.Of course the dell had a mbtx form factor, so that didn't go exactly as planned either.So i ordered an atx case for it all and got everything together.I carried over the cpu, memory, and hard drive from the dell, plus an audigy 2 sound card i had gotten a little while earlier, put it together, and by grace the thing fired right up! I wish i remembered all the details but it was 1996, i was 16 years old, and cobbled together a pentium 75mhz that i overclocked to a whopping 100mhz.That was roundedout with pitiful amounts of ram and disk space, but i was moving up from a prebuilt 386sx 25mhz so it was still a hell of an upgrade.In the months leading up to it, i was jealous of a friend's computer since he had a pentium 66.But i was less jealous of the fact his cpus kept burning themselves up.I knew the original pentiums ran hot, but there was something seriously wrong with his setup and i was surprised the company he ordered from was willing to send him so many replacements.I think i christened the new computer with a game of quake against said friend(Which, surprisingly given the rate he was going through them, wasn't enough to fry his p66oftheweek). When i look back on my upgrade purchases during those years, two sayings come to mind:1.Don't throw good money after bad.2.Buy cheap buy twice.Oh well.The valuable life lesson i got out of it is that it's not all about price, it's about value.


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