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jytte
January 31st, 2008, 02:37 PM
Hi everyone I am a new member, getting my 2006 software today. I am planning to buy a PC solely to run trainz 2006 (I need this one for work), and have been looking at Dell's Inspiron 530, with 1.8Ghz, 1GB ram, ATI Radeon HD 2400 pro, on win XP. (Budget is an issue here) Does anyone run a similar system? And will I be able to run 2006 without problems on this machine?? I have been reading threads on this issue, but everyone seem to discuss bigger PCs. Any help and suggestions will be much appreciated. thx

Mike10
January 31st, 2008, 03:04 PM
Whatever you spend on a PC, the best 'bang for your buck' is RAM where Trainz is concerned. Given the low cost of memory these days doubling that 1GB RAM to 2GB will be money well spent.

I would advise against buying Dell though (but that's just my opinion)

Mike.

barn700
January 31st, 2008, 03:31 PM
Agree with Mike, RAM is the way, and a good graphics card too.

Your machine is a bit low on the CPU speed, but will be OK. Remember computers should only be for 3 years, after that they become much faster and cheaper.

johnwhelan
January 31st, 2008, 03:44 PM
Hi everyone I am a new member, getting my 2006 software today. I am planning to buy a PC solely to run trainz 2006 (I need this one for work), and have been looking at Dell's Inspiron 530, with 1.8Ghz, 1GB ram, ATI Radeon HD 2400 pro, on win XP. (Budget is an issue here) Does anyone run a similar system? And will I be able to run 2006 without problems on this machine?? I have been reading threads on this issue, but everyone seem to discuss bigger PCs. Any help and suggestions will be much appreciated. thx

Are you looking at new or refurbished? What sort of budget?

I might be more tempted by AMD cpu based on cost or get some one to build you something.

Cheerio John

jytte
February 1st, 2008, 04:04 PM
Thank you all for your input, in the meantime I've installed and run TRS2006 on 2 of the computers I have, and here's the result for anyone interested:

PC1:
Dell 310, Pent.4, 2.8Ghz/800fsb, 512 Ram, 128MB integrated vga, on winXP
Result: takes a while to load, get quite a bit of studdering when running heavy graphic world.

PC2:
Dell 520, Dual core, 2.13Ghz/1066fsb, 2GB Ram, 256MB nvidia 7300LE, on winXP
Result: loads 3-4 times faster, runs smoothly everywhere.

So, I guess I have to find myself a happy medium.
I have 3 Dells in the house, and I've been very happy with them so far.
I must say I'm impressed how relatively well TRS2006 runs on the integrated video on the smaller 310, but still want a better graphics card. Not sure though, where the main improvement in the larger PC lays.
On the smaller machines, like the 530 I was looking at, Dell only offers Radeon HD 2xxx series cards, and I'm not too keen on ATI.

Any thoughts on videocards anyone?

jytte
February 1st, 2008, 04:07 PM
PS PS

I should note, that the smaller 310 is heavily loaded and running all kinds of software from internet access, networking, virusprotection etc etc in the background (which is why I'm getting another for the TRS), and that would naturally affect the performance.

jytte
February 1st, 2008, 04:15 PM
How did you do that??

Hi John and Paul, thanks again for answering, next question:
How and where did you add those nice trains in front of your user names????

Jytte

jytte
February 1st, 2008, 04:19 PM
never mind, as you can see I figured it out, he he

Mike10
February 1st, 2008, 06:01 PM
1. 512 Ram, winXP
2. 2GB Ram, winXP

The RAM is the difference. In PC1 XP has taken most of the available RAM leaving very little for Trainz, I suspect it is making use of the page file and instead of getting speedy memory usage you are having to wait for everything to be paged back and forth from the hard drive. The second has enough RAM that trainz can spread out and do it's thing more effectively without waiting for information all the time.

I've just checked the memory usage on my machine and with only Windows, Outlook and this forum running in Firefox (plus background services) it is currently using 524MB. If I only had 512MB that wouldn't leave much to run Trainz.

Check for yourself by Clicking 'Start' - > Run and typing taskmgr in the box. Look for the Physical Memory(K) and the figure for 'Available'. Subtracting that from the 'Total' will give you the current usage. The figure for 'Total Commit Charge' will also give another indication.

Mike.

jytte
February 1st, 2008, 06:10 PM
Thanks Mike

You're right. I figured the 4x Ram on the bigger machine was the major reason for running smoothly. In the meantime I dug into diagnostic on both machines, and found out that alhtough I bought and paid for a 256 MB nvidia card on the bigger machine, I actually have a 512 MB card in there, go figure! Well, that's of course good news, except that leaves me wondering how much performance I would get out of a 128MB or 256MB card?
do you know the "new" radeon HD 2xxx series card?

johnwhelan
February 1st, 2008, 07:11 PM
Thanks Mike

You're right. I figured the 4x Ram on the bigger machine was the major reason for running smoothly. In the meantime I dug into diagnostic on both machines, and found out that alhtough I bought and paid for a 256 MB nvidia card on the bigger machine, I actually have a 512 MB card in there, go figure! Well, that's of course good news, except that leaves me wondering how much performance I would get out of a 128MB or 256MB card?
do you know the "new" radeon HD 2xxx series card?

Basically what you want is 2 gigs of memory, Trainz can use up to a gig of video card memory quite happily and something that runs fairly cool.

At the moment ATI's new 3850 and 3870 cards are the cooler running cards per performance.

http://www.tomshardware.com/2007/12/03/best_graphics_card/page3.html

SAPPHIRE 100237L Radeon HD 3650 512MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFire Supported Video Card - Retail (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102725) $104 newegg.com


These video cards really need 450 watt power supply so the Dell 720 would be the only Dell that even begins to meet this. When a Dell matches the requirements they are often a very good solution just at the moment they don't have an optimal solution. As the ATI 3850 and 3870 video cards become more freely available so I would expect Dell to make them available.

The cpu doesn't really matter but Intel Penryn 45 nm range is about to be released and they promise to be faster cheaper cooler. Search tomshardware for more details.

Cheerio John

nicky9499
February 1st, 2008, 08:41 PM
My built-from-scratch computer has been around for some six years, receiving humble upgrades from time to time. As it stands, my current specs run Trainz fine, apart from the slideshows in the yards and huge station complexes.

Intel Pentium 4 Northwood 2.75Ghz (overclocked)
1.5 GB RAM
Nvidia 6600GTX
19" Dell monitor
Creative Soundblaster sound card

Then again, for added boost you can always turn off background programs and terminate explorer.exe so that Trainz has more resources to run on.

Hope this helps.

lornyk5
February 1st, 2008, 10:29 PM
I have been thru a dell and others, plus built my own 2 towers. If you want to run trainz you need a balance between ram, cpu, and gpu. With that said I recommend at least a duo core 2 intel, 1gb of ram and a 7600gt or better gx card.

Lorin:wave:

ex-railwayman
February 2nd, 2008, 08:57 PM
Sorry to sort of hijack this thread a little, but I know that you need to be connected to the internet when you play Trainz ( I currently use TRS2006 ), but I read that you should disable certain stuff in the background to allow the PC to offer more "bite" when playing the game. However, what exactly is one to turn off, as when I'm connected to the web I need to get alerts telling me that something is attempting to gain access to my PC, I don't want to turn off my anti-virus or other protection or anything that may affect the PC, but if they use up a lot of energy, what else can I choose please???

Thankz.

Ex-railwayman.

johnwhelan
February 3rd, 2008, 08:10 AM
Sorry to sort of hijack this thread a little, but I know that you need to be connected to the internet when you play Trainz ( I currently use TRS2006 ), but I read that you should disable certain stuff in the background to allow the PC to offer more "bite" when playing the game. However, what exactly is one to turn off, as when I'm connected to the web I need to get alerts telling me that something is attempting to gain access to my PC, I don't want to turn off my anti-virus or other protection or anything that may affect the PC, but if they use up a lot of energy, what else can I choose please???

Thankz.

Ex-railwayman.

You do not need to be connected to the Internet when you play Trainz. You can use an external firewall, D-link for example have quite effective ones but the hard wired ones are safer.

Anti-virus software works by scanning the file as you load it into memory. When you are running Trainz nothing else needs to be loaded so turn off your anti-virus software at that point. Turn it back on afterwards.

Cheerio John

ex-railwayman
February 3rd, 2008, 12:17 PM
That's great to know John, thank you very much, I have 4 firewalls on my PC, a little over the top I admit, but some were free installations, and one can never be too careful. I'll just have to remember to turn them all back on again when I've finished playing Trainz for the day......:hehe:

Thankz again.

Ex.

deeelare
February 3rd, 2008, 01:34 PM
Ex,

FWIW:
I would never start CMP without being attached to the internet, unless I was working on content already on my PC (and then I hit the escape key), but as far as simply running Trainz06, I have never had to dissconnect my Firewall, anti virus or be connected ????
But I also do not access Trainz using the CMP program .
Maybe I missed something in the two posts ?

---DLR (and I apologize for off-topic)

johnwhelan
February 3rd, 2008, 03:05 PM
Ex,

FWIW:
I would never start CMP without being attached to the internet, unless I was working on content already on my PC (and then I hit the escape key), but as far as simply running Trainz06, I have never had to dissconnect my Firewall, anti virus or be connected ????
But I also do not access Trainz using the CMP program .
Maybe I missed something in the two posts ?

---DLR (and I apologize for off-topic)

If your machine is marginal then turning off the firewall and antivirus software can help performance. If you are running dual or multicore don't bother.

Cheerio John

deeelare
February 4th, 2008, 02:21 PM
John,

Now I understand your post !
Thanks for the clarification !

---DLR

nicky9499
February 5th, 2008, 08:48 AM
ZoneAlarm firewall has a useful "lock all connections" option which I turn on before playing the game. I can then turn off my anti virus. Download helpers, torrent clients and programs which run in the background. For that extra boost, you can terminate the process "Explorer" from the task manager. Use the "run" command from Task Manager to start Trainz. Remember to close the task manager as well, as it is very resource-hogging.

If you're still worried about security breaches, disconnect from the wireless network or, in my case, just remove the LAN cable.

ex-railwayman
February 5th, 2008, 02:03 PM
Hello nicky9499, I also have ZoneAlarm installed and use the "game mode" now to stop any interference from incoming internet responses, however, I have got used to being connected to the net as I keep popping back to the CMP every so often and I can tell when the internet is up or down for downloading new contents. I have gotten into this habit since I had TRS2006 over 2 years ago, but as I have a brand new PC, maybe it is a habit I ought to stop doing. I was thinking only today that there are occassions when the internet goes down my Trainz system crashes, maybe that is pure coincidence, but yet again it might not.....

Cheerz. ex-railwayman.