An amateur PC 'old head' diving headfirst into a modern crazy setup...help?

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I recently decided to look into gaming PCs to see what all the "PC Master Race" hype is that I've been hearing about for years. I am 32 and used to know just enough about computers to keep myself out of trouble. I've never opened one up before if that gives you an idea. Two weeks ago I was still stuck in the Windows 8.0 days on an ancient i3 laptop (one that was pretty high end when it was purchased and is now completely outdated, but is still pretty snappy and runs like a champ minus the battery). I am COMPLETELY out of the loop and got one heck of a crash course. I also was completely out of the loop regarding the current graphics card/mining situation. I've never even used Windows 10 before! Long story short, being the SlickDeals aficionado that I am, I managed to snag a fairly decent pre-built rig for about $905 out-the-door...a smoking deal IMO. Due to Walmart's unprecedented and shocking incompetence, I managed to purchase a second one even cheaper than the first (about $794 out-the-door). I also picked up a decent peripheral setup for $85 plus tax. I don't know if I can ever use a normal mouse or keyboard ever again. So now I have two identical rigs. I plan to use these as his and hers gaming PCs that will be mining 24/7 in their idle time (98%+). These should see absolutely NO other use, and I intend to keep it that way.

Skip this paragraph unless you're interested in crypto:
Yes, I'm now aware of the LHR cards. They still get right at 25MH/s each and bring in $2-3 per day each after electricity. They'll pay for themselves in barely over a year worst case scenario, assuming the slowest hash/pay rate and assuming there isn't a future workaround for LHR. I'm happy with that. I also have spent quite a bit of time already trying to fine tune various mining programs and found NH QM on medium to be the best overall package. It beat multiple configurations using the regular NH miner, NB Miner plugin, etc., and it runs much cooler than all of the others (58C stable and no babysitting on NH QM versus 70+C NH Miner w/NB Miner 39.7 plugin manually installed). Yes, seeing 35 MH/s was nice, but seeing 76C at one point and seeing lots of LHR locks even when reduced to 70% from 74% wasn't. Not sure why the fans were locked at 42% though even when at 76C. Maybe that was part of the problem, but I didn't know how to change it). Back on track...


Here's the problem: I also recently upgraded said i3 laptop to a new cheap pre-built desktop bundle because I picked it up for $139 plus tax brand new (I justified the monitor alone for that price). This tower handles my everyday browsing, work stuff, and will basically be my 'daily driver.' I know it would make more sense to make one of the Asus PCs my DD and eliminate the HP, but I have my reasons for this decision. I also picked up two of these bundles at that price, and one of the towers is permanently being used in another location. So I plan to use the extra HP monitor for the second Asus rig eventually. But for now, until I buy another desk and figure out exactly how and where I want to accommodate these new machines, I have 3 desktop PCs on one desk! Confused yet? I thought so.

TL;DR/The puzzle pieces: I have 3 desktop PCs on the same desk, and absolutely do NOT want to have more than one keyboard, mouse, and monitor on the already crowded desk. How do I get the same keyboard, mouse, and monitor to control all 3 PCs independently without constantly unplugging and plugging in each device? The best solution I have found so far is a KVM switch, but the issue is that most of these only control 2 PCs. I need to control 3. For the record, all of the peripherals are wired USB, and my monitor has two ports - one HDMI and one VGA. Also, if at all possible, I don't want to worsen the video/input quality/latency on at least one, preferably both, of the Asus rigs by introducing adapters/switches/etc. Not sure if that's even something to worry about, but I've never used anything this demanding before.

Any advice or input on any of the above topics would be highly appreciated.
 
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The monitor you’re using isn’t anything special… just a generic IPS with an average response time (5ms) running at 1080p60, so you’ll be frame rate limited in any game to 60FPS (unless screen tearing doesn’t bother you). But depending on what games you play, it might not matter.

I’d say try one of the 4 port HDMI KVM switches off Amazon.

EDIT - this seems like a better KVM.

 
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TL;DR/The puzzle pieces: I have 3 desktop PCs on the same desk, and absolutely do NOT want to have more than one keyboard, mouse, and monitor on the already crowded desk. How do I get the same keyboard, mouse, and monitor to control all 3 PCs independently without constantly unplugging and plugging in each device? The best solution I have found so far is a KVM switch, but the issue is that most of these only control 2 PCs. I need to control 3. For the record, all of the peripherals are wired USB, and my monitor has two ports - one HDMI and one VGA. Also, if at all possible, I don't want to worsen the video/input quality/latency on at least one, preferably both, of the Asus rigs by introducing adapters/switches/etc. Not sure if that's even something to worry about, but I've never used anything this demanding before.

Any advice or input on any of the above topics would be highly appreciated.
We use 4 head KVM at work all the time, and if you really want to pay they make 8 and maybe 16 as well (those cost a lot). Maybe you can find a used one on eBay?
 

OilMagnate

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So 2 votes KVM and no other input. I guess I was on the right track. I was hoping for some miracle option I'd never heard of. Haha.

The monitor you’re using isn’t anything special… just a generic IPS with an average response time (5ms) running at 1080p60, so you’ll be frame rate limited in any game to 60FPS (unless screen tearing doesn’t bother you). But depending on what games you play, it might not matter.
Yes, I agree it's not anything great. But for $139 plus tax along with a pre-built, mouse, and keyboard I think it was a phenomenal buy. I am perfectly content with 1080/60. With my Asus, the monitor will be the weakest link until I decide to upgrade it. Basically I'm set for a while. Hopefully when the time comes, GPUs won't be 3x their worth like they are now.
 
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So 2 votes KVM and no other input. I guess I was on the right track. I was hoping for some miracle option I'd never heard of. Haha.


Yes, I agree it's not anything great. But for $139 plus tax along with a pre-built, mouse, and keyboard I think it was a phenomenal buy. I am perfectly content with 1080/60. With my Asus, the monitor will be the weakest link until I decide to upgrade it. Basically I'm set for a while. Hopefully when the time comes, GPUs won't be 3x their worth like they are now.
I was thinking from a PC master race perspective, I’m quite content with even 30fps as long as it’s stable and looks decent lol
 
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Are those specs correct in that the new system(s) use an AMD 5700G APU, with a separate graphics card? Why?

I upgraded all my graphics cards in 2018 before the mining craze, very thankful I did. My main desktop got an AMD Vega 64 8gb for just under $400. My mediacenter (that the kids play games in 1080P on) has a Radeon RX480 8gb, that one cost less than $200.

I'll quit gaming before I spend $500+ on a mediocre/crap video card, or $1k+ on a decent one. I hope the ones I have last awhile! For me anything above about 30fps has been perfectly playable. I hear all this talk about people need 144hz+ for games, I must be missing something...? Personally I'd rather have the graphics quality cranked up to the max than a super high frame rate.
 
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Are those specs correct in that the new system(s) use an AMD 5700G APU, with a separate graphics card? Why?

I upgraded all my graphics cards in 2018 before the mining craze, very thankful I did. My main desktop got an AMD Vega 64 8gb for just under $400. My mediacenter (that the kids play games in 1080P on) has a Radeon RX480 8gb, that one cost less than $200.

I'll quit gaming before I spend $500+ on a mediocre/crap video card, or $1k+ on a decent one. I hope the ones I have last awhile! For me anything above about 30fps has been perfectly playable. I hear all this talk about people need 144hz+ for games, I must be missing something...? Personally I'd rather have the graphics quality cranked up to the max than a super high frame rate.
Depends on the games you play…twitch shooters like counter strike and rainbow six benefit greatly from super high refresh and frame rates. Something like say an RPG or story game benefit more from higher quality. It is nice having a higher refresh rate though… 75hz on my laptop is noticeably a little smoother than 60.

As for why a 5700G+dedicated GPU… the dedicated GPU annihilates the integrated graphics, Asus just probably got a good deal on that particular CPU from AMD.
 
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Depends on the games you play…twitch shooters like counter strike and rainbow six benefit greatly from super high refresh and frame rates.
How so? Can a human react in that additional 1/60 of a second and benefit from the extra frames? I sure can't, probably why I'm not into competitive gaming. To each their own.
 
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How so? Can a human react in that additional 1/60 of a second and benefit from the extra frames? I sure can't, probably why I'm not into competitive gaming. To each their own.
There are videos, like from Linus Tech Tips where they get all scientific with it, that shows it can make a difference however it’s also very highly based on the person playing and what you’re playing.

I’m with you though, I’m happy with a stable 30-60FPS but the graphics settings cranked up. Cyberpunk 2077 or Metro Exodus for instance is gorgeous. I like to just enjoy a game and take in the scenery.
75E0E676-ED5B-4A8B-9BE9-69B85CFAAC63.jpg
 

OilMagnate

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So a lot has changed since I started this thread. Reading it again, all I can say is...yikes!

I never got a KVM switch. I just decided to be lazy and utilize an old trick: Teamviewer FTW!

The Asus PCs are history. They were returned last week (thank you Walmart holiday return policy!). They were great, but I have learned a lot in 3 months and decided to dig in much deeper. I now have two identical HP Omen 30L desktops, each with 3090s and liquid-cooled 11700Ks that I scored for $5500 to the penny after tax combined. The way I saw it, the GPUs alone were worth that. I also now have 8 Dell miners, two with 3060TIs (NON-LHR), and six with 1660 Supers. $12K worth of hardware later (and a very interesting self-taught crash course on computers and networking), I'm gaming at the pinnacle of performance and mining at 505MH/s. Not bad for a noob!

And for those curious, yes, I'm HODLing like my life depends on it. Those in the know...know. Wen moon?!?
 
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So a lot has changed since I started this thread. Reading it again, all I can say is...yikes!

I never got a KVM switch. I just decided to be lazy and utilize an old trick: Teamviewer FTW!

The Asus PCs are history. They were returned last week (thank you Walmart holiday return policy!). They were great, but I have learned a lot in 3 months and decided to dig in much deeper. I now have two identical HP Omen 30L desktops, each with 3090s and liquid-cooled 11700Ks that I scored for $5500 to the penny after tax combined. The way I saw it, the GPUs alone were worth that. I also now have 8 Dell miners, two with 3060TIs (NON-LHR), and six with 1660 Supers. $12K worth of hardware later (and a very interesting self-taught crash course on computers and networking), I'm gaming at the pinnacle of performance and mining at 505MH/s. Not bad for a noob!

And for those curious, yes, I'm HODLing like my life depends on it. Those in the know...know. Wen moon?!?
Quickly looked on eBay and yep… 3090’s are selling for $2500-$2600! Maybe now it’s time to convert a little bit of crypto into cash and spoil yourself with a glorious monitor for those glorious GPU’s… the Samsung Oddyssey G9 is very impressive 😉
 

OilMagnate

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Maybe now it’s time to convert a little bit of crypto into cash
Absolutely not. Everything is in the toilet right now. HODLing... or holding until the price goes back up before selling.

Maybe now it’s time to spoil yourself with a glorious monitor for those glorious GPU’s… the Samsung Oddyssey G9 is very impressive 😉
I can't justify spending 4K prices, and I am not a big fan of ultrawide screens. I'm not even sold on the curved screen idea yet. Too old school for my own good. Plus I have to recuperate a ton of cash before I go investing more. So I landed on a very respectably priced Asus VG27AQ 1440p 165Hz (but really 144Hz) monitor for $239.99 plus tax. I'm still trying to get used to the IPS panel, it kinda strains my eyes. I tried a VA panel since (LG 32GN63T-B) but the overall quality was pretty terrible and I couldn't get the color settings even close to what they should be. It seemed washed out with white and still too dark at the same time. Plus I like the built in-speakers with the Asus. It seemed like less eye strain with the VA, but I didn't keep it long enough to really tell. So for now, I'll keep the monitor as my weakest link, and enjoy 1440p in all of it's glory. It is my first screen above 1080p after all...


And a word of advice for the crypto folks... the 3090s are NOT the greatest for mining. They really need to figure out the VRAM temp issues that plague them. I've spent the last month trying every trick in the the book to mod it for better cooling. Not much helps. Best results were laying two case fans on the top blowing air upward to extract some heat. Heatsinks didn't help at all, and re-padding did very little. Phenomenal for gaming, a headache to keep cool for mining. Save them for the gamers.
 
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Absolutely not. Everything is in the toilet right now. HODLing... or holding until the price goes back up before selling.


I can't justify spending 4K prices, and I am not a big fan of ultrawide screens. I'm not even sold on the curved screen idea yet. Too old school for my own good. Plus I have to recuperate a ton of cash before I go investing more. So I landed on a very respectably priced Asus VG27AQ 1440p 165Hz (but really 144Hz) monitor for $239.99 plus tax. I'm still trying to get used to the IPS panel, it kinda strains my eyes. I tried a VA panel since (LG 32GN63T-B) but the overall quality was pretty terrible and I couldn't get the color settings even close to what they should be. It seemed washed out with white and still too dark at the same time. Plus I like the built in-speakers with the Asus. It seemed like less eye strain with the VA, but I didn't keep it long enough to really tell. So for now, I'll keep the monitor as my weakest link, and enjoy 1440p in all of it's glory. It is my first screen above 1080p after all...


And a word of advice for the crypto folks... the 3090s are NOT the greatest for mining. They really need to figure out the VRAM temp issues that plague them. I've spent the last month trying every trick in the the book to mod it for better cooling. Not much helps. Best results were laying two case fans on the top blowing air upward to extract some heat. Heatsinks didn't help at all, and re-padding did very little. Phenomenal for gaming, a headache to keep cool for mining. Save them for the gamers.
I’m still holding my $20 (at the time) worth of Doge lol.

For some reason I thought you were on a 1080p 60hz monitor. 144 is buttery smooth! I love the ultrawides since most everything is 16:9 otherwise… just something about a 16:10 screen I love more. As for the temps, IIRC there is VRAM on the back of the card as well and they’re relying on the backplate for cooling those… I saw a post awhile ago of a guy who mounted little copper heat sinks to the memory chips and put a fan on it which helped a ton.
 
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Are those specs correct in that the new system(s) use an AMD 5700G APU, with a separate graphics card? Why?

I upgraded all my graphics cards in 2018 before the mining craze, very thankful I did. My main desktop got an AMD Vega 64 8gb for just under $400. My mediacenter (that the kids play games in 1080P on) has a Radeon RX480 8gb, that one cost less than $200.

I'll quit gaming before I spend $500+ on a mediocre/crap video card, or $1k+ on a decent one. I hope the ones I have last awhile! For me anything above about 30fps has been perfectly playable. I hear all this talk about people need 144hz+ for games, I must be missing something...? Personally I'd rather have the graphics quality cranked up to the max than a super high frame rate.
Bro the gtx 1050ti i had was like 145 dollars, now its like 400 something!!! crazy, should've bought like 7 and make massive profit.
 
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