Sim Racing PC dedicated Build Questions

Vince #7

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Greetings racers

I have a 700 to 900 euros budget to build a pc dedicated for mostly sim racing and some other not very heavy games. My pc hardware knwolege is basic to none and im here basically asking for help about some tips for my new pc... what should i spend more money on and what are the crucial parts for a sim racing pc ?

The titles i will be playing are basically all of the ones available on the sim category market incluiding the codemasters formula 1 games (i dont know if they are considered sims by now)
 

Jan Larsen

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Well, the graphics card (for vital, smooth fps) and the CPU for processing power, especially if you race with AI, is probably the two most important things. Remember to choose a GPU and CPU that match eachother to avoid bottlenecking. A decent amount of ram (16GB) would be a good choice too. And a decent powersupply to power the darn thing.
Also consider spending a decent amount of cash on a fast monitor if you havent already done so. 1ms response time is vital to help avoid input lag and if you can get 144fps, get a 144hz monitor. Or if you like eyecandy and can do with 60fps, there no need for 144hz, a 60hz monitor will do just fine.
 

dud

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You need to state some preferences of yours, even if you have little experience. Answer what you can.

Do you want to display at a high resolution such as 4x or triple screen? Or do you do single 1440p or 1080p? Plan on VR?

Do you want very high video quality (no the same as resolution)?

Do you expect to spend time with a lot of cars on screen (races, multiplayer, AI) or do you want pretty looking hotlapping?

Remember that highly competitive eSport people all use very low video quality and very low resolution. They just need to be told the state of the game in the most efficient manner. What do you think about this vs. making it pretty?

Does your budget include the monitor(s)?

Generally here are my money spending preferences:
  • A quality power supply is most important, next to the video card
  • Storage is least important if your budget is low. Waiting for the game to load is not gameplay. Get enough RAM so that you don't page during gameplay
  • I highly prefer cheap brand mainboards anyway (ASRock in particular), no decisions there
  • If you want to play a variety of games it is still a good idea to get a CPU that has a high single-core speed. There might be some single-threaded games and there will be games that have single threads running overtime. CPUs with many cores but limited max single core speed should only be bought if you know that the software to run is all well multi-threaded
 
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RasmusP

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Cpu: i5 9600k (sim racing needs Single thread performance, not many cores!)
Or a new ryzen 3600 when it comes out as it looks like that will have a similar single thread performance with more cores for the same price.

Gpu: if your monitor is freesync, amd gpu (might wanna wait for the new generation!). If you plan to go with gsync in the future, get a nvidia gpu. Or if you have a freesync monitor that it gsync compatible, also get a nvidia gpu.

Which gpu depends on the budget and the resolution + fps you want to game with.

Freesync and gsync makes a big difference imo. I never believed in this but now that I have a gsync monitor since last December, no way going back!
No matter the fps you can achieve with your pc, it will look fine and be smooth :)

Ram: get 16gb. 8 is just enough at the moment but you don't have any headroom...
Ram MHz.. It depends. Amd CPUs get a nice boost from higher speeds, Intel not that much.
Mostly there's a step in the pricing at some point. Like each MHz step costing 10€ more, then at some point the next step costs 50€ more.
In my opinion, 3200 MHz should be good enough and still not cost a fortune.

That's about it. Psu wise I love be quiet, 650W straight power is awesome and strong enough for all single gpu configurations and high quality, while being efficient for lower power consumption situations.
You don't need 1000w, rather buy a quality one!

Additional: hard drives. With the current ssd prices, I'd go with an ssd... Wanting a quick drive after work? Save 2 minutes until you're ready to start the game and then save time every time you go on track.
Simracers change a car, weather, track frequently and every time you'll have quicker loading times.

But that's luxury and the last to decide on :)
 
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Vince #7

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Jun 21, 2019
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Do you expect to spend time with a lot of cars on screen (races, multiplayer, AI) or do you want pretty looking hotlapping?
races so yeah lots of cars

Does your budget include the monitor(s)?
i already have a monitor , omen 25 144hz 1ms

Do you want to display at a high resolution such as 4x or triple screen? Or do you do single 1440p or 1080p? Plan on VR?
vr would be a future (long term) purshace but for now i wont to focus on my only monitor , he is quite big (1920) dont know anything about monitors to so idk if large monitors need better computers
Do you want very high video quality (no the same as resolution)?
not very high but still a decent/good
Remember that highly competitive eSport people all use very low video quality and very low resolution. They just need to be told the state of the game in the most efficient manner. What do you think about this vs. making it pretty?
my nunber one focus here is to have fun, i want a good expirience with the phisics of the games but i dont want feel i am on a 2000s computer so yeah i want some graphical quality too
 

Vince #7

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Jun 21, 2019
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Cpu: i5 9600k (sim racing needs Single thread performance, not many cores!)
Or a new ryzen 3600 when it comes out as it looks like that will have a similar single thread performance with more cores for the same price.

Gpu: if your monitor is freesync, amd gpu (might wanna wait for the new generation!). If you plan to go with gsync in the future, get a nvidia gpu. Or if you have a freesync monitor that it gsync compatible, also get a nvidia gpu.

Which gpu depends on the budget and the resolution + fps you want to game with.

Freesync and gsync makes a big difference imo. I never believed in this but now that I have a gsync monitor since last December, no way going back!
No matter the fps you can achieve with your pc, it will look fine and be smooth :)

Ram: get 16gb. 8 is just enough at the moment but you don't have any headroom...
Ram MHz.. It depends. Amd CPUs get a nice boost from higher speeds, Intel not that much.
Mostly there's a step in the pricing at some point. Like each MHz step costing 10€ more, then at some point the next step costs 50€ more.
In my opinion, 3200 MHz should be good enough and still not cost a fortune.

That's about it. Psu wise I love be quiet, 650W straight power is awesome and strong enough for all single gpu configurations and high quality, while being efficient for lower power consumption situations.
You don't need 1000w, rather buy a quality one!

Additional: hard drives. With the current ssd prices, I'd go with an ssd... Wanting a quick drive after work? Save 2 minutes until you're ready to start the game and then save time every time you go on track.
Simracers change a car, weather, track frequently and every time you'll have quicker loading times.

But that's luxury and the last to decide on :)
Thank you sir really apreciated the help. Aldo i really dont know if my monitor is freesync or gsync but i will try to find out
 

RasmusP

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Thank you sir really apreciated the help. Aldo i really dont know if my monitor is freesync or gsync but i will try to find out
It's freesync so a AMD gpu will be the safe bet.
For 1 monitor and 1920x1080 resolution, a Vega 56 would be a good match for high fps.
In July though the new generation is expected to hit the market so if you can wait, wait.
Cheaper possibility would be the amd rx 590, though a clear step weaker than the Vega 56 but only slightly cheaper...

Freesync means that the fps of the pc and the Hz of the monitor will be synced.
Low input lag, smooth game play, no tearing and the best : not fiddling with settings for hours!
You simply check the fps you can achieve with low graphics settings (cpu limit testing) and then raise the graphics settings until you're happy.
Limit the fps (amd driver software has an inbuilt limiter) at a value you can steadily achieve and be done.

Or simply go with default settings (or maximum settings and go from there.)
With freesync, anything between 55-144 fps/Hz will be enjoyable and small fps drops won't be noticeable.
You still need more or less stable fps though. A drop from 140 fps to 70 will still stutter.

For me, without freesync or gsync, every little fps drop lead to a stuttering. I always used normal vsync, as all other options were stuttering a little too.
I even tried all options with a 165 hz monitor, couldn't get happy no matter what (had it for testing).
Bought my gsync monitor, best decision in my gaming life!
Lot of people will tell you that you wouldn't need freesync or gsync though.
Either they never experienced it properly or they are not sensitive for stuttering.

Problem with my suggestions: a build on mindfactory (German store) results in 990€ :(
It would be future proof though, apart from the rx 590 graphics card.
Building a pc from scratch without a case, psu, cpu cooler etc is expensive.
But buying something better later on, apart from the graphics card, always is a major pain.
New cpu leads mostly to new motherboard. More ram might need selling the existing 8gb and buying a new 16gb set for compatibility.
Then, how much can be saved with a cheap psu, case and cpu cooler compared to the hassle you'll have to replace them... Not worth it.

So I won't advice for anything lower than what I recommend. Going cheaper will result in not as satisfying gaming and also in earlier upgrading.
All my friends regret that they went for the i5 in 2012-2014.
They all upgraded due to big fps drops in quite some games.
My 2012 I7 2600k is still enough for 60 fps in all games.

It's difficult to predict the future though! Investing for the perfect sweetspot now or go cheap first and then cheap but newer again or upgrade to better parts but lose money due to it?
Your choice.
I'd go with a ryzen 3600 (maybe x), 3200 MHz 16gb ddr4, new gen amd gpu for about 300€.
Or if you don't wanna wait until end of July /August:
I5 9600k, same ddr4, Vega 56.

Anyway...
Without gsync I always had short stutters due to my cpu not being able to be perfectly consistent.
With gsync I simply see the fps going down a tiny amount but there's no stutter :)
Taking the i7 over the i5 was only 60€ back then though.
Nowadays, taking the 9700k over the 9600k is a lot more!

I upgraded my graphics card 3 times though since then!
 
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