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IRL - Returning player Hardware Q&A (1 Viewer)


Jun 22, 2024
Hey guys, I'm coming back to EverQuest for the first time since 2008, and intend to box my own group (or more) and I'm in something of a quandary in regards to a choice between 2 systems I'm thinking of using. Perhaps someone has some input to help me resolve my indecision.

Setup #1:
Dual Xeon E5-2699 v3 @ 2.3GHz
AMD Radeon RX 580

Setup #2:
Beelink SER7 Max Ryzen 7 7840HS @ 3.8GHz
AMD Radeon 780M Integrated

They both come out to about the same price. Back in the day, I used to 3-box using an old ASUS SMP motherboard with dual P3-1000MHz processors and 4GB of RAM, Windows XP Pro, and some 4x AGP AMD video card whose name I don't even recall. I ran circles around other people who had more modern multi-core processors, though loading a 4th character was like trying to push through mud face first.

I know EQ is still pretty CPU-intensive and I've always been a "more cores cheap!" fanboy, but at the same time I recognize I probably won't play EQ exclusively forever, so having some kind of future proofing would be nice. The 780M and 32GB of RAM seem to be the biggest drawback to the Beelink, but it's small and supports all the latest instruction sets/technologies natively.

I love that Xeon core count, and 128GB of RAM sets my drawers ablaze. But if I can get similar performance out of the Beelink (at least at the 1-2 group level), I may just jump on that for convenience. I may not have to move a computer around very much, but I'm a 51yo combat vet and my body ain't in the best of shape anymore; lugging around an HP z840 vs something small enough to bolt to the back of the monitor might be enough to swing me.

If any of you have any experience with the 7840HS and/or especially the 780M GPU chipset, I'd appreciate your insights.
Ok, well, that wasn't a good sign. Anyway, I decided that both were going overboard, considering I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing (yet) in regards to boxing more than 3 toons at once. But that's manually, with zero assistance or automation.

Went with what a member had suggested previously: z440 with a single Xeon E5-2699 v3, 64GB Reg/ECC RAM, 1TB SSD hard drive, and an AMD RX 570 (Sapphire Nitro+ 8GB). Even got a 32" Acer 1500R curved FHD monitor to go with it. Everything refurbished and under warranty by the seller, minimum 1 year. Cost me a little under $600, and *should* be an absolute beast.

Now I wait for all the disparate components to show up on my doorstep, slap it all together, sacrifice a goat, and pray before hitting the "Power On" button. God willing and the creek don't rise, I'll be installing Everquest for the first time since 2008, and after that...I begin my multiboxing journey!

And thank God for Heroic characters and personas: I won't have to level up a tank (Shadowknight) from scratch, and my Enchanter main can make a Gnome (bleh!) Rogue persona to finally start down the road of the only 2 Tradeskills I never worked on. That Grandiose Consigned stuff should keep me going until I can gear up from missions and what-not.

Can't wait to see how I try and juggle 6+ character subscriptions. Can you really not use ANY "Prestige" items unless you have an active Gold/All Access subscription?

Had a guild member buy one of these and he said it runs a group with no problems.

Price: $300

CPU: Intel celeron N95 - 4x core @ 3.4 Ghz
GPU: Integrated
RAM: 32 GB

If you are looking for bare minimum - single group computer ...

The one I pulled the trigger on cost about the same. I did debate for a long time about to whether to use Ebay or Amazon; I prefer Amazon because of the easy return/replace/refund policy, but ultimately, I couldn't find what I needed there. And I know the company I went with on Ebay, there won't be any issues with repairs if something fails.

I also contemplated using an integrated GPU, but came down on the side of a dedicated card to make sure there was enough VRAM for textures and what-not. It comes with a pre-installed R5 340x with 2GB; depending on its performance, I may end up just sitting on the RX 570 and saving it for a 2nd machine, especially considering the proprietary power supply/case design. I don't feel like breaking out the acetylene torch to cut that sucker apart and Frankenstein it back together again. A single 6-pin GPU lead is enough for an RX 570/580, and a 525W PS (regardless of HP's usual high quality component build) just can't handle the draw for anything bigger, anyway.

I figure if I ever become adept enough at handling multi-group setups, I can always buy another setup of the same kind and be able to run a full 54-man raid from just 2 systems, although I'd probably want to add some extra (cheaper) monitors to keep an eye on the key character in each group.
IRL - Returning player Hardware Q&A

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