The ISA-Bus

One blog to bind them all.

A Gaming PC in 1996

In his PC game guide, which gravitates very strongly towards Windows games, Hendric Wehr gives the following recommendations for a gaming PC:

  • A Pentium 133, better 166. The 166 is still a lot more expensive, but prices are going down. The Pentium 200 is too expensive, and even the newest games can’t utilize its power.
  • 32MB RAM. RAM is cheaper than ever, 32MB cost about 300 German Mark.
  • 2GB is the ideal size for the harddrive. Most PCs at the time are sold with a 1.2GB drive. He advises against a second harddrive, since many models are incompatible.
  • The faster the CD-ROM drive, the better, but within reason: Quad-speed is the minimum, but games don’t support more than 8×, so a 12× like Toshiba’s XM3801 B is a waste of money. For about 120 German Mark you get a very robust 6× drive.
  • 14″ and 15″ monitors belong into the museum, 17″ is ideal for gaming. For about 1500 German Mark the Sony 17 sf II offers everything you expect from a monitor. There are others that sell for less, just take care that it can display your resolution of choice (the maximum ever mentioned is 1024×768) at 72Hz and that it is low on radiation.
  • The video card should have at least 2MB. Many recent games won’t install if they find only a 1MB card.
  • Most important about the soundcard is that it supports Plug & Play.

Hendric Wehr then discusses several models of speakers, joysticks and VR helmets. He never mentions 3D accelerators.

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One response to “A Gaming PC in 1996

  1. ECM December 25, 2012 at 18:43

    I got my first 3D Accelerator in 96 (Diamond Viper, I believe)–they had basically arrived in mid-96, iirc.

    (I read stuff like this and remember when a 20MB HDD was mind-blowing…then I feel old.)

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