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 Advice before I buy a new system

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Ghost
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:28 am Reply with quoteBack to top

First, I know I can build my own system and save some money. That isn't really something I am interested in doing.

Okay, so I picked out the system I want. It's an Alienware Area 51 ALX. Can anyone here think of anything else I should add.

Quote:

Chassis Color
ALX Space Black - Anodized Aluminum Chassis edit
Processors
Overclocked Intel® Core™i7 975 3.86GHz (8MB Cache) Extreme Edition Quad Core Processor edit
Alienware Area-51 ALX
Alienware Area-51 ALX + TactX™ Headset edit
Operating Systems
Genuine Windows® 7 Ultimate, 64bit, English edit
Hardware Support Services
3 Year Basic Service Plan edit
Video Cards
Dual 2GB GDDR5 ATI Radeon™ HD 5970 CrossfireX™ Enabled edit
Memory
12GB DDR3 1333MHz (3x 4GB) Tri Channel Memory edit
Monitors
21.5” Alienware AW2210 OptX™ Full HD Gaming Monitor edit
Large Displays
None edit
Hard Drives
2TB RAID 0 (2x 1TB SATA-II, 7,200 RPM, 32MB Cache HDDs) edit
2nd Hard Drive
None edit
Sound Card
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium edit
Optical Drives
6X Blu-ray Disc (BD) Burner and 24x CD/DVD Burner (DVD+/-RW) edit
Gaming Essentials
None edit
Mouse
Logitech Performance Mouse MX edit
Wireless
None edit
Keyboard
Logitech Cordless Desktop MX 5500 Revolution edit
OTHER OPTIONS
Driver
None edit
Adobe Reader Software
Adobe Acrobat Reader edit
ENTERTAINMENT
AlienFX
AlienFX Color, Quasar Blue edit
Avatar
Alienhead 3D edit
Wallpaper
Alienhead 3D edit
Gear Store
None edit
Factory Installed Software
Steam and Portal™ Factory Installed edit
Adobe Editing Software
None edit
Gaming Accessories
None edit
Gaming Software
None edit
Floppy Drive
19-in-1 Media Card Reader edit
Gaming Audio
Logitech Z-5500 Speaker System edit
TV Tuners & Remote Controls
None edit
Power Protection & Adapters
Monster Cable MDP 800 Digital PowerCenter Surge Protector edit
SOFTWARE & ACCESSORIES
Office Productivity Software (Pre-Installed)
Microsoft Office Home and Student, English edit
Security Software
None edit
Hot Deals
None edit
Networking Options
None edit
Datasafe
None edit
Automatic Updates
Automatic Updates: Enabled edit
Solution Station
None edit
Guaranteed Buy Back
None edit


Also included in this system

The following options are default selections included with your order


Alienware™ High-Performance Liquid Cooling


I have used up all the PCI slots so I can't add much else without taking something out.

I do have a question for the gamers. It says

Quote:
Includes Integrated 7.1 Surround Sound Audio.


So I can dump the sound blaster sound card. If I do the only thing that might be worth using up the PCI slot is the The Killer Xeno Pro gaming network card but I don't even know what that is.

This is what it says about it.

  • Fights lag for smoother, more responsive online gameplay
  • Automatically detects and prioritizes game traffic with Game DetectTM technology
  • Lets you do more while you game with intelligent Bandwidth Control
  • Increases network performance on your PC with dedicated Network Processing Unit (NPU)


I am leaning more on keeping the sound blaster sound card. I've never really played online anyway. As far as smoother and more responsive game play. Isn't this system hot enough as it is? Shouldn't I expect smooth game play? This sounds like something that pertains only to online playing. Am I right about that?

I haven't gamed in a couple of years so any advice is appreciated.

Also, Microsoft Office Home and Student comes with MS word correct? I know I can use open office if not but I prefer to use MS word.

One more thing, what exactly is the High-Performance Liquid Cooling (other than what the name suggests)? I mean how does it work. Is this something that requires maintenance?

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Dutch
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:57 am Reply with quoteBack to top

It strikes me you chose to add quite a lot of 'None edit's' in your configuration. You sure you need all those? Wink Laughing

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Kabuto Sama
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 10:57 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I see you want to buy a rocket and I suspect it is priced accordingly.

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Ghost
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:17 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^yes, it is kind of pricy.

Dutch wrote:
It strikes me you chose to add quite a lot of 'None edit's' in your configuration. You sure you need all those?


I just copied and pasted what I had.

The areas where I can upgrade are in the monitor size and/or an additional harddrive. I don't think I need it though.

I am mainly hoping to get the approval of the gamers.

Does anyone know if I will be able to use DVDs in the blu-ray drive or will I have to use the DVD drive. Say to watch a movie or install/play a game.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:38 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I honestly can't see what you've got against building your own system, you woosy blouse.

It's nowhere as difficult or as time consuming as you probably think it is - less than an hour for a novice. You can even get a local PC store to build the thing for you if you want - they should only charge you a couple of bucks. You just supply them with the parts and tell them to get on with it.
Take a look at what's going to be in your alienware PC and then go and buy the components online and get someone to build it for you if you don't want to. You'll probably find you'll save money and have a PC which you can upgrade whenever you want. It's not so much about saving cash in the initial outlay (although you will) but in a couple of years' time when you need a new mobo, gfx card or whatever, you can swap out part by part over a period instead of having to ditch because it won't fit into your stock box.

I too used to be a useless gimp like you. But I saw the light and now I only ever build my own.

If you do insist on remaining a tart, then Water Cooling is a good option for a gaming machine. Basically, it's a load of tubing that runs throughout the machine, with chilled water creating a much cooler effect than can be created by a few fans. It's a lot quieter and because it's cooler means that the machine will run faster. You do run the risk of flooding and drowning if you get a leak though so make sure you wear blow up arm-bands when using it.

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Kabuto Sama
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:45 am Reply with quoteBack to top

I am a gamer, and this is what I say: this system IS a rocket. It will play any games you throw in him at max details.
My advice: unless you are a big fan of Alienware (they have cool designs, though) you would be better off by building your own system. Or ask the help of a techno-savvy friend to build it for you.
Select yourself what will be into it.
I am not for bling-bling, but functionality, so I choosed a conservative ASUS chassis which I filled with the rest of my configuration. Quite old (build in '07), need an upgrade, but I do not have the ca$h yet. Laughing Maybe I have to take the offer of one of our "friends" and become millioNAIRA over night and without much effort. Just several trips to WU.

Back to business: Thermaltake makes good looking, ergonomical&fun, easy to work with cases. And very good power supplies.
For mobo&cpu, you could settle with an i5.
If you want Linux, forget about ATI. Go nVidia.
Forget about wireless kb/mice; the batteries run out of juice when you need them most.
Get Seagate/Samsung HDD; these are the best ATM.
Get a nice 24" screen. I have a 22", happy with it, but a 24 IS better. Samsung, LG, these would be my choices.
If you own a PS2, get one of those USB/Playstation gamepads, they have both connectors.
Get a gamer KB/rodent. A4Tech makes good and not too expensive peripherals. Take a look at their website.

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OL BOY NA SMALL TIN REMAIN CRAZ FOR ENTER YOUR MATTER OH , IBI LIKE SAY DEM COME ADD SMALL AFRICAN INSURANCE NAIM COME MAKE YOU SEE SMALL ROAD SHA.
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your father is a pig and your mother is a bicth.you are a bastad and you will die young.you shold ask your father where you bastad came from.South Africa is not for white.someday we will kill you all whites in africa and in south africa.up Zulu. -- the angry Zulu lad

you are a foolish Man that is why people like you dont achive good things in Life forget it if do not want to jelp this young Man
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Master of Puppets
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:26 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

The smoother gameplay that your gaming network card promises only goes for online game and is actually the same as the 'reduced lag'. They don't mean your computer starts performing better graphically...

EDIT: At least, that's how I read it...

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:06 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Not sure if the Blu-Ray will run DVDs but if you have the DVD R/W in the bay why not run it? I would pound the cheaper to replace device. Kabuto has some great advice and I too heard that Samsung had the best monitors. My year 22" started glitching last year and I had to have it replaced. They gave me some grief about the receipt. The warranty was 5 years so no 22" LCD should be out of warranty yet. They eventually replaced it with a 2 year old rebuilt that occasionally glitches. I have to turn it off and turn it back on. This week I bought another Samsung LCD. It had a stuck pixel so I immediately returned it for a refund. The new replacement works fine so far.

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Ghost
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:32 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I appreciate everyone concern for me to save some money but I prefer to do it this way. This is the way I have always done it. I strongly doubt if I did build my own system it would be as good as the one above. Certain parts won't be available and I'll have to settle for less. Not only that, but I don't think a high end gaming system is something I should try to put together myself.

Anyway, I don't want to build my own system. I want the system I picked out above. I don't really care if I can save a few hundred dollars.

Not to understand a man's purpose, does not make him confused.

Okay now that we are past that, does anyone know if I will be able to play DVDs and CD roms in my blu-ray drive?

Master of Puppets wrote:
The smoother gameplay that your gaming network card promises only goes for online game and is actually the same as the 'reduced lag'. They don't mean your computer starts performing better graphically...


That's how I read it too. I will stick with the Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium sound card.

The hard drive, 2TB should be enough or do you think an extra HD just in case. I normally replace my PC about every four years but I have never bought one as high end as this one.

I usually buy the latest and greatest but this one seems specially designed for gaming.

I also still would like to know if Microsoft Office Home and Student comes with MS word.

Also, probably a stupid question but do you think it comes with an Ethernet connection? I mentioned it has build in wireless but an Ethernet network card is usually standard, correct?


Kabuto Sama wrote:
.
Back to business: Thermaltake makes good looking, ergonomical&fun, easy to work with cases. And very good power supplies.
For mobo&cpu, you could settle with an i5.
If you want Linux, forget about ATI. Go nVidia.
Forget about wireless kb/mice; the batteries run out of juice when you need them most.
Get Seagate/Samsung HDD; these are the best ATM.
Get a nice 24" screen. I have a 22", happy with it, but a 24 IS better. Samsung, LG, these would be my choices.
If you own a PS2, get one of those USB/Playstation gamepads, they have both connectors.
Get a gamer KB/rodent. A4Tech makes good and not too expensive peripherals. Take a look at their website.


I read Blah, blah blah blah.

Quote:
For mobo&cpu, you could settle with an i5.


I don't want to settle. The one I picked out has an i7


Quote:
Get a nice 24" screen. I have a 22", happy with it, but a 24 IS better.


The monitor I chose has a 21.5" screen. I just went with what was recommended. I can go bigger but for like a grand more. I am not too sure the extra 2.5" is worth a $1000.00. What are the benefits of a larger screen by 2.5" other than it's just bigger?

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:39 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks, Connie
I am an expert, worked with many hardware platforms. For 13 years I built PC's, mine and others.
I might be guilty of hubris.
But I gained wisdom; and wisdom is no good unless you share it;
So, consider my advice. Is your money and you can do whatever you want with them.

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OL BOY NA SMALL TIN REMAIN CRAZ FOR ENTER YOUR MATTER OH , IBI LIKE SAY DEM COME ADD SMALL AFRICAN INSURANCE NAIM COME MAKE YOU SEE SMALL ROAD SHA.
ANY HOW I GO CATCH U FOR ANOTHER CORNER AGAIN MR WADADA!

your father is a pig and your mother is a bicth.you are a bastad and you will die young.you shold ask your father where you bastad came from.South Africa is not for white.someday we will kill you all whites in africa and in south africa.up Zulu. -- the angry Zulu lad

you are a foolish Man that is why people like you dont achive good things in Life forget it if do not want to jelp this young Man
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 2:45 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Question In my country the difference btw a 22 and a 24 is not $1000. More like 100-150$.

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OL BOY NA SMALL TIN REMAIN CRAZ FOR ENTER YOUR MATTER OH , IBI LIKE SAY DEM COME ADD SMALL AFRICAN INSURANCE NAIM COME MAKE YOU SEE SMALL ROAD SHA.
ANY HOW I GO CATCH U FOR ANOTHER CORNER AGAIN MR WADADA!

your father is a pig and your mother is a bicth.you are a bastad and you will die young.you shold ask your father where you bastad came from.South Africa is not for white.someday we will kill you all whites in africa and in south africa.up Zulu. -- the angry Zulu lad

you are a foolish Man that is why people like you dont achive good things in Life forget it if do not want to jelp this young Man
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:14 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ you are right. Selecting the large monitor compared to none is $1000.00. The difference between what I have picked out and the 24" is only a few hundred dollars.

Connie L. Gus wrote:
Not sure if the Blu-Ray will run DVDs but if you have the DVD R/W in the bay why not run it?


Thank you for answering my question instead of just making fun of me Laughing

I am just use to using the top bay for everything except burning.


Quote:
It's nowhere as difficult or as time consuming as you probably think it is - less than an hour for a novice.


That's not the issue. Just when a system is put together by the place you are buying it from means there won't be any compatibility issues.


Quote:
Take a look at what's going to be in your alienware PC and then go and buy the components online and get someone to build it for you if you don't want to.


That is exactly what I did. Dell is putting it together for me. This isn't a already built stock system. I customized it by choosing what I wanted to go into it.

Quote:
but in a couple of years' time when you need a new mobo, gfx card or whatever, you can swap out part by part over a period instead of having to ditch because it won't fit into your stock box.


Once again, it's not stock. Over the years I have upgraded parts to my Dell PCs without any problems. If later I need a larger video card, I will just buy one and plug it in.


Quote:
I too used to be a useless gimp like you.


Well I am going to be a useless gimp with a nice PC.

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Dutch
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 3:41 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Ghost wrote:


Dutch wrote:
It strikes me you chose to add quite a lot of 'None edit's' in your configuration. You sure you need all those?


I just copied and pasted what I had.


No kidding Wink

Ghost wrote:
Does anyone know if I will be able to use DVDs in the blu-ray drive or will I have to use the DVD drive. Say to watch a movie or install/play a game.


As I read it on the UK Dell site, it's just one drive that will burn and read everything.

Ghost wrote:
So I can dump the sound blaster sound card. If I do the only thing that might be worth using up the PCI slot is the The Killer Xeno Pro gaming network card but I don't even know what that is. .



Here's a review/ benchmark of the mentioned NIC. Conclusion:It doesn't add much. It's up to you if you prefer a better sound quality or a bit of extra net speed while online gaming.

Ghost wrote:
Also, Microsoft Office Home and Student comes with MS word correct?


Yes. (that's also what it says on the Dell website) No Outlook, though.

Ghost wrote:
The hard drive, 2TB should be enough or do you think an extra HD just in case


Normally, yes. It depends what you want to do with it, though .. By today's standards 2 TB is huge for any PC.

Ghost wrote:
Also, probably a stupid question but do you think it comes with an Ethernet connection?


I've never seen a PC without an Ethernet connection. Most of the time they're integrated on the motherboard. You might want to verify, though.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:15 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

You could also go with an external HD when the time arrives that your 2TB is full.. Which'll take some time...

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:26 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ Not safe enough MOP

I recommend an external NAS with 5 * 2TB drives in Raid 5 configuration.
Might help our mod if he wants to save a few pictures Laughing

ETA: 6 drives is better

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:30 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^I installed one of those, though with a few drives less, at work past friday.

It may be safer, but it's also slower as you'd need to send all those files through your network. Which is only cool if you're also running a wired gigabit network.

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 4:34 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
if you're also running a wired gigabit network.


I don't think our mod will settle for less Laughing

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Kabuto Sama
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 6:38 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Well, if you are dead set on this Alienware, then this is it. Tis an excellent gaming PC, plenty of RAM and HDD.
You might want some gaming kb/mouse. A 24" screen. External USB HDD.
Want gamepad/joystick/wheel? Google is your best friend.

IMHO, dual gamepads (PC/PS) are worth their money. I bought mine because I have PS1&PS2 and I thought it is good to have same gamepad on different platforms. If you want to play on PS, PS games ported on PC or PS games by emulator, these pads make your life easier.

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Ghana x3 Hong Kong Portugal United States x4 China Nigeria South Africa United Kingdom x5 Malaysia x4
OL BOY NA SMALL TIN REMAIN CRAZ FOR ENTER YOUR MATTER OH , IBI LIKE SAY DEM COME ADD SMALL AFRICAN INSURANCE NAIM COME MAKE YOU SEE SMALL ROAD SHA.
ANY HOW I GO CATCH U FOR ANOTHER CORNER AGAIN MR WADADA!

your father is a pig and your mother is a bicth.you are a bastad and you will die young.you shold ask your father where you bastad came from.South Africa is not for white.someday we will kill you all whites in africa and in south africa.up Zulu. -- the angry Zulu lad

you are a foolish Man that is why people like you dont achive good things in Life forget it if do not want to jelp this young Man
Asshole! - angry ghanaian "barrister"
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 8:31 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Kabuto Sama wrote:
Or ask the help of a techno-savvy friend to build it for you.


Someone call? Very Happy

I take quick and easy payments by WU/MG.
100% risky free Wink

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 9:08 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I am sci-tech savvy.

Wink

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The next revelation will probs be that the scanner works as well.

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Ghost
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Joined: 26 Jun 2004
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 14, 2010 11:15 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Thanks everyone. I upgrade the service plan to include accidental damage and parts for four years. Other then that, it's a done deal.

Kabuto Sama wrote:
Well, if you are dead set on this Alienware, then this is it. Tis an excellent gaming PC, plenty of RAM and HDD.
You might want some gaming kb/mouse. A 24" screen. External USB HDD.
Want gamepad/joystick/wheel? Google is your best friend.

IMHO, dual gamepads (PC/PS) are worth their money. I bought mine because I have PS1&PS2 and I thought it is good to have same gamepad on different platforms. If you want to play on PS, PS games ported on PC or PS games by emulator, these pads make your life easier.


I appreciate your advise Very Happy

I think I will stick with the cordless mouse and keyboard and just have extra batteries stocked. What I use now is cordless.

As far a games pads go, I will just go into fry's and pick one out. I'll end up there for software anyway.

This PC is damn expensive.

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HitchHiker
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:13 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

You seem to be missing the "Tin Foil Hat" optional extra.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:49 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Ghost wrote:

Just when a system is put together by the place you are buying it from means there won't be any compatibility issues.

This is why I only buy systems now. I've put together computers before the days of Windows and remember having to write the arguments into my config.sys. What a pain when something would not work because of untested compatibility issues.

I've had no issues with Microsoft and Logitech wireless keyboards and mice. I've got a flashlight fetish so I have lots of batteries around the house at all times.

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Badgerbait
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:49 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

That system is makin' me drool , a little. Did you max out the memory? I did not see that listed.

I also agree Connie on going with a DVD R/W and skipping the blue ray. Blue ray has not really made the crossover to PC gaming yet and you can always upgrade if it goes mainstream (as I am sure it will, but PC sector is always slow to advance with optical drives). I am surprised it doesn't have dual optical drive bays (or did I miss that).

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Connie L. Gus
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 2:52 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Hey wait. I never said to skip the Blue Ray. I was suggesting use the cheaper of two components to perform the same task. Laughing

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LISTEN I CAN NOT TAKE YOUR SHIT ANY LONGER WE HAVE WHROTE A PETITION AGAINST YOU TO THE FBI WITH ALL OUR EVIDENCE YOU ARE INTO PROSTITUTION,DRUG DEALING, FORGERY, CREDIT CARDS FORGRY WESTEN UNION FALSIFICATION,DRUGING MEN,COMMETING MURDER, STEALING, DRUNCARD, ALL THIS WE HAVE THE EVIDENCE TO PROOF OUR CASE AGAINST YOU.-Johnson Hill
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Safari I am stranderd. Henry A. Lagos to Accra, WIMPed for 67 days.
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