Well, first off, I never buy a prepackaged computer - I go to one of the
million little local dealers, one I've been using for most of the last decade, and
tell them what I want, and they put it together for me. I generally specify
a few things that are important to me, and they fill in the rest with appropriate
hardware. I find that buying a pre-packaged box, you either get something
mediocre, or pay a lot and get lots of whizzbangs you don't need.
Anyway, I'm not at all confident your graphics card will be adequate.
Regarding the graphics, look here:http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/gam ... 107-7.html
(This is constantly updated, and easy to find - Tom's Hardware site,
"Best Graphics Card for the Money" article, current version, under
articles>graphics, last page "Graphics Card Hierarchy Chart" )
This chart is only about power, it doesn't consider bang-for-buck, nor even
availability. It is to help get a sense of the ranking of any card from the last
decade or so.
For running a flight sim, you want a card that is relatively near the top of the page.
I like to go for somewhere around the third or fourth band down. For a budget, I'd
consider dropping down as far as sixth or seventh. (Expect it, once purchased, to
slide down the chart about one band every three to six months). A page search for the
ATI 4200 shows it up on the 25th band, as an integrated card. This is lower down the
page than top-of-the-line cards from 2006, which could probably be picked up from a
used computer junk dealer for free.
Basically, you don't ever want a lower performance or mid-range graphics card for
simming. Far better to go for something at or next to top of the line, but two or three
generations back. You will pay about the same and get much better results.
Anyway, to get some idea of how to interpret this stuff, let's look at the first page
of the article, best cards under $100. These cards are probably a wee bit weak
for current simming, but will do in a pinch. You can also cross check from the
chart against the position of the cards on page one, and note the names of other
cards there or above. Some of these cards are quite old now. For example, the
6670 ddr3 named on page one of the current article is on band 14, where we also find
nVidia 8800 series and 240 series, which were being sold (as top of the line) around 2008.
(the other card named, the 440 ddr5 isn't shown on the chart for some reason, but obviously
should be on the same band (don't confuse it with the 440 ddr3, which is down a couple of
bands)). You could probably find an 8800 card used for cheap, and be at least as well off as
with the named cards.
Well, it all depends on how severe your budget is, but I wouldn't want to try to manage
BoB2 with a card lower down the page than those, and ideally, would want something
at least a few bands above them. 1 GB vidRAM if you can manage it.
I'm not up to speed on cpu's these days, so I can't comment much there, other than to
say that BoB2 leans on the cpu at least as hard as the video, and benefits greatly
from multi-cores, as it is multi-threaded. 4 or 8 cores if possible.