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Intro + Info - Technical Specs Discussion for The Sims 2 [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Technical Specs Discussion for The Sims 2

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Intro + Info [Jan. 6th, 2007|07:43 pm]
Technical Specs Discussion for The Sims 2


Hi! Welcome to sims2specs. My motivation for making this community pretty much lies in my struggle to pick out a good laptop for TS2. I wanted to really understand what was important in picking out the right specs, not just have suggestions lobbed at me. I also found that in some of the more general venues for getting advice about computers, there was perhaps a little bit of disdain for TS2 ("You don't need much to run that game," etc.) Essentially, I really wanted a place where you could get good computer advice from people who actually play and appreciate the game. I was able to make a good selection for a computer in the end (I'm typing on it now!) but it was a very frustrating experience. Hopefully some of my frustration and trial-by-experience will help some others out. :)

Here are a few rules/suggestions for the running of the community:

-Because this community's goal is to help people, at this time there will not be any restrictions on posting; however it would be nice if you tried to keep your posts down to only one a day. If you have more to add, please edit your post from before. If you wish to includes images, please only post one outsides of an LJ cut, and try to keep it no larger than 500px wide.

-At some point we may try to implement a survey for people who are looking for recommendations to fill out. For now, before you post asking for a suggestion, please check out first what the required specs are for the game and each of its EPs. You can find out the specs of each version of the PC game by going here, checking out the individual pages for each EP, and finding the link for "System Requirements" -- or by looking at the sticker that came on the box, if you still have it.

-The System Requirements for the Mac version of the game and the EPs are here: Original, Uni, NL, OFB, and Pets. There is also a list of Mac systems and their compatability with the game below.

-If you are having a problem with your computer, please post all of your specs in your post in order to help us try to determine what the problem might be.

-It might help you to read a little bit about some of the terminologies you are going to be seeing when you look at computer specs. Even if you just have a very general idea of it, the difference it makes can be huge.

CPU (Central Processing Unit) -- the processor.
Intel, one of the largest manufacturers of CPUs, and a list of Intel microprocessors -- find the one you have (or the one you're looking at!) in the contents and read about it!
AMD, Intel's main rival, and a list of AMD's microprocessors.

GPUs (Graphics Processing Units), more commonly known as graphics cards.
nVIDIA, one of the most reputable producers of graphics cards. Find your card on the list!
ATI, nVIDIA's biggest competitor.

If you are looking for a notebook, there are special cards made for them. nVIDIA currently calls them GeForce Go and ATI calls them Mobility Radeon. Their numbering systems are slightly different.

Another good resource if you are looking for a notebook is Notebook Review, it was a great help to me, both the reviews and the forums. If anyone has a similar recommendation for desktops, please put it forth.

A few requests:

-Right now the community needs at least one or maybe two other maintainers, who have some degree of knowledge of computers, and someone who knows Macs would be greatly appreciated, too.

-We also need a community icon. I mean, I could make one, but I'm lazy, so it'll take forever. And it'll probably be ugly. :)

[User Picture]From: senatorsfan
2007-01-07 01:18 am (UTC)
Hey! New member, just joined after seeing the promo. I could make an icon if you like -- I'm not the most experienced icon-maker on the face of the earth, but I'd like to try. (Btw, using an icon I made myself, just in case you wanted an example.) :)
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[User Picture]From: thickets
2007-01-07 01:19 am (UTC)
That would be great! Thank you! :)
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[User Picture]From: senatorsfan
2007-01-07 03:03 am (UTC)
How does this look?

Let me know if you'd like the text to be a different colour, or any other changes. :)
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[User Picture]From: thickets
2007-01-07 03:58 pm (UTC)
That's great! Thank you! :)
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[User Picture]From: eigengrau
2007-01-07 01:26 am (UTC)
This is such a cool comm. I needed something like this D;

You might want to add something about T&L cards, because when I was just starting out the concept confused me :x And RAM?
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[User Picture]From: thickets
2007-01-07 02:37 am (UTC)
That's a good idea. I'll add something about it into the main post tomorrow.
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[User Picture]From: birthmark
2007-01-07 02:32 am (UTC)
The Mac specs can be found at Aspyr, who are responsible for the Mac ports.

Open for Business

I've attempted to round up a summary of Macs that meet these specs. However, as always, your Mac might not exactly fall within these and it's probably not complete, but covers most recent Macs. Consider it a guideline, I didn't even attempt to consider built-to-order specs or third paty upgrades.

Also note, Aspyr states you need a DVD drive. Macs, of course, do it slightly differently to PCs and its not just called a DVD-ROM drive: a ComboDrive reads DVDs and burns CDs, a SuperDrive burns DVDs as well. So you need a ComboDrive.

I'm pretty sure all these models shipped with at least a ComboDrive, Apple have been shipping them for years, but you'll want to check. I'm also fairly confident they shipped with at least 256mb of RAM as well, but again, please check.

To find out the processor speed and amount of RAM your Mac has, go to the Apple Menu > About This Mac.

iMac G4: later models with the 1.25ghz processor
iMac G5: all of them
iMac Intel Core Duo / Core 2 Duo: all of them except for the cheap 17" with the Intel GMA950 integrated graphics
Mac mini G4: all of them
Mac mini Intel: all have the Intel GMA950 integrated graphics, doesn't meet specs
PowerMac G4: Later models with the 1.25ghz processor
PowerMac G5: all of them
Mac Pro: all of them

iBook: none of them
PowerBook: later PowerBook G4 series (the aluminum ones, not the titanium with the black keyboards).
MacBook: none (has the Intel GMA950)
MacBook Pro: all of them

About that Intel GMA950:

This is not recommended by Aspyr and doesn't meet the specs. Then again, people have been known to run Half-Life 2 on them. I don't have any experience with these and the Sims 2, but I do know you can get HL2 to run on them with no less than 2GB of RAM and it's playable. Anyone running TS2 on one of these?
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[User Picture]From: thickets
2007-01-07 02:36 am (UTC)
Ooh, somebody just asked about this thesims2, she's thinking of buying a Macbook, and was wondering about the Intel GMA950's capabilities. I will point her over here.

Thanks for all of you great info. I will edit it into the main post tomorrow! :D
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[User Picture]From: birthmark
2007-01-07 02:45 am (UTC)
Oh yeah, while I'm at it, just realized I forgot a whole line of Mac desktops *smacks forehead* They may not make them anymore, but there's a lot of them out there..

eMac: later models with 1.25 / 1.45ghz processor also meet the specs.

Later on, I can probably add some info about third party upgrades as well; you can upgrade a Mac contrary to popular belief :)
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From: fishbiscuit
2007-01-07 07:10 am (UTC)
Runs fine on my MacBook. The graphics could be better, but it's good enough for me. But then I don't have any of the expansion packs installed yet, and I'm not fanatical about details. But if I'd have known this before (and I didn't even think about it), I would have bought a pro instead.
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[User Picture]From: birthmark
2007-01-07 08:04 am (UTC)
Yeah, I figured HL2 was much more demanding than the Sims 2 (my FX5200 runs The Sims 2 fine, HL2 is kinda laggy and on low settings) so if it could run that it'd be able to handle the Sims 2. Thanks for confirming - since a lot of Sims 2 players are non-gamers, I'd say they wouldn't have given a stuff about their graphics card and would have an integrated one like the 950, good to know they can play (especially after the cost of a MacBook and it's un-upgradableness!).
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From: fishbiscuit
2007-01-07 08:08 am (UTC)
In what sense are they un-upgradable? I'm about to upgrade both my hard drive and my memory. I don't know that you can upgrade more than that on either a MacBook or a pc laptop, but I could be wrong.
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[User Picture]From: birthmark
2007-01-07 08:13 am (UTC)
Oh yeah, RAM and hard drive you can, but not the graphics. Some PC laptops you can upgrade the graphics, but it'd be messy to say the least.
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[User Picture]From: hidden_kitten
2007-01-07 03:10 am (UTC)
Thank you for this, as I wanted to ask, but didn't want to get booed out of thesims2 :D
And thank your for the lit of terms, as I am mostly techie-illiterate!
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