· Pentium Pro 200 MHz w/MMX minimum or if you can afford one, the Pentium II (Klamath) 266MHz or 300MHz
· Make sure you ask what type of a chipset the motherboard is based upon, the slowest and cheapest is the Intel's 440FX chipset, which is obsolete now and should not be available, though maybe with some vendors trying to give you a 'good deal'.
· You must get either a VX or HX chipset motherboard, or if available, the best would be TX. As of August 1997, Intel's 440LX chipset motherboards should become available which are fastest of all and have considerable advantages over all other chipset boards.
· Minimum 512 L2 cache.
· If you can get an USB (Universal Serial Bus) motherboard it will be great. See appendix I for details on USB.
· Ask for RAM to be installed in multiples of 16Mb SIMMs and ask how much RAM the motherboard can be upgraded to. The minimum should be 128 Mb.
· Make sure it has MPEG built into it with a minimum of 2Mb VRAM or WRAM, expandable to 4Mb (8Mb will be the best).
· Minimum 32-bit SoundBlaster compatible bundled with good software for text to speech conversion and Bass, Treble & 3D-Sound control features
· Minimum 16X (must be compatible with your sound card). 25X drives are available too.
· Minimum 32 Mb EDO or SG-RAM (ask if the RAM has error correction or not)
Hard Disk Drive
· Make sure you get an EIDE HDD, minimum 2.1Gb.
· If you plan to use graphics intensive applications like 3D-Studio, CorelDraw or other DTP or animation packages, a SCSI HDD will be useful, though more expensive than the standard IDE or EIDE HDD's and requires a slot on the motherboard to fix the SCSI interface card.
· Minimum 17" with a maximum dot pitch (dp) of 0.26 and digital controls.
· Trinitron tubes are the best.
· One parallel & two serial
· Windows95' Keyboard
· Definitely Windows NT or at least Windows 95'