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Best Recommended Hardware Specs for Modded Minecraft?

Discussion in 'General FTB chat' started by FastTquick, Apr 7, 2017.

  1. FastTquick

    FastTquick New Member

    I've been looking into getting a new laptop computer to replace my current one that's powerful enough to run modded Minecraft. Specifically, I would love to get one that can run any of the big FTB modpacks at a satisfying performance level even if I have added a few more mods I have chosen to them. However, I've not been able to find any reliable info about what specific system specs are required for this. I've heard that a good graphics card helps, but what about the CPU and the amount of RAM I need and how much I need to allocate to Java.

    What system specs do you guys use and how well does your system run modded Minecraft FTB packs?
  2. Hambeau

    Hambeau Over-Achiever

    Don't use a laptop. It's a hell of a lot cheaper to build a desktop, as any laptop with enough ram and decent video is using specialized (i.e. Expensive) parts. There are only two laptops I'd consider, one of them water-cooled, and they both cost near $4000.00 US and weigh a ton.

    CPU-Multicore is of little consequence, since MC runs primarily on one core. For MC the two important characteristics are 64-bit (to access the ram needed. 32-bit cannot access enough ram to run an OS and 1.10.2 packs simultaneously) and clock speed. Most affordable laptops run at 2.4 GHz tops. You can get older generation CPUs for less than $200 US that run at 4GHz. Considerably less if you don't insist on the bigger brand.

    RAM-I'd use no less than 8GB, because 1.10.2 packs seem to want a little more than 4GB, the OS requires 2GB and that leaves less than 2GB (with Integrated Graphics) for texture packs if you want them
  3. Inaeo

    Inaeo New Member

    Minecraft is quite CPU intensive, so if the system is being designed to run it, I would prioritize that. Unfortunately, Minecraft is single threaded, so number of cores isn't as important as actual processing power.

    The later versions (1.10 in particular) moves some of the load to the GPU, so if you have a decent graphics card, you can use some options to increase performance.

    Most packs require a minimum of 4G of RAM, but your OS will need some juice too, so I wouldn't stock short of 8G. If you can, get more, great, but allocating more than 4-6G to MC can often be counterproductive.

    Edit: ninja'd
  4. SevenMass

    SevenMass Well-Known Member

    The later versions of MC actually do use more than one thread. (Starting with 1.7.10 and offloading even more to other threads in higher versions)
    Single threaded performance is still the biggest factor though. Getting more than 4 cores won't help much.
  5. KingTriaxx

    KingTriaxx Forum Addict

    Yes and no on multi-core. At least on AMD, you can tweak the affinity in Windows, moving many programs off of a core giving more of it's processing power to Minecraft. The other advantage is that as MC takes more power, there are more cores for OS to inhabit while leaving MC alone.

    I wouldn't go less than 8GB RAM, though I'm wondering if 8 on a single channel or two 4's on two channels makes any difference.

    Me, I get good results with a moderately powerful graphics card, but it's not demanding in the same way as say Fallout 4, or other Ultra high-end games.
  6. Drbretto

    Drbretto Popular Member

    For the CPU, definitely prioritize direct speed over number of cores and other fancy features.
    For the RAM, absolutely no less than 8 GB
    not intel integrated graphics (ie any dedicated graphics card*)

    I will echo that it's a lot cheaper to build your own desktop (my decent little beast cost me $1400 in parts, but it'd be a $3500+ laptop easily) but there are sometimes reasons why someone would prefer the portability. The good news is, just about any up to date PC that comes with 8 GB of RAM will probably be enough to play any mod just fine. The graphics card doesn't really come into play too much until you start using high-res textures and shaders, so save that kind of thing for a desktop. You don't necessarily NEED those things. The game can look amazing with 32x32 textures and the lagless internal shaders.

    With optifine, you can get it to utilize a second core for chunk updates and it makes a difference, but it's hardly a consideration when making a purchase because nearly everything out there is at least quad core these days. And that's probably what I'd recommend. Quad core will generally get you the best balance for the price.

    *Note: As an AMD owner (r9 390) I have found that NVIDIA is far more compatible with OpenGL-based applications like Minecraft is. If you are intending to use shaders and whatnot, then make sure you get something NVIDIA rather than AMD. I think the AMD cards can be great in general, but you'll see some bugs here.
    Aetherpirate and FastTquick like this.
  7. Aetherpirate

    Aetherpirate New Member

    Tell us your budget.
  8. FastTquick

    FastTquick New Member

    I'd like to thank everyone here for the advice so far, but I've got another question: Suppose that without including tax, I'm only willing to spend up to $2000 for a new laptop. What are the best specs I can get for that kind of money?
  9. Drbretto

    Drbretto Popular Member

    That's more of a question for a laptop dealer. Just go to any of the manufacturer sites and compare what they all have to offer.
  10. Aetherpirate

    Aetherpirate New Member

    I'd take Drbretto's advice too:

    For the CPU, definitely prioritize direct speed over number of cores and other fancy features.
    For the RAM, absolutely no less than 8 GB
    not intel integrated graphics (ie any dedicated graphics card*) <-----
    this is really key.

    Get one with an SSD too, if you can. Also consider that buying and adding an SSD yourself is often much cheaper than buying a laptop that already has one in it, if you have sufficient tech-fu to do that.

  11. KingTriaxx

    KingTriaxx Forum Addict

  12. Drbretto

    Drbretto Popular Member

    For comparison sake, in defense of strongly considering if a desktop could work, my 4.5 ghz i7 (native 4.0) with the R9 390 (a generation better than the geforce 960) with without some of my extra hardware I bought (like 8 gigs instead of the 16 and maybe skip the SSD as great as they are) could be built for around that same price.

    But nearly any PC you can buy today will run it just fine.
  13. ShneekeyTheLost

    ShneekeyTheLost Too Much Free Time

    The other thing I haven't seen touched on is the video card, which is actually quite relevant, especially in modded MC world or if you plan on doing anything with high-res resource packs or shaders.

    These days, I'd suggest a 1050Ti. It's a solid card that does what it does quite well and solidly. There's those who would pitch the 1070 or, Notch help us, the 1080, but this is way too much card for... well... for practically anything you want to do, other than 'latest generation AAA title on ultra-max settings on a 4k monitor'.

    You could very easily get a good 256 texture pack with a good shaders pack going with the 1050Ti. They can generally be found for 100$-150$, so actually quite inexpensive as video cards go (you'll pay around 400-500$ for the 1070, by way of comparison).
  14. KingTriaxx

    KingTriaxx Forum Addict

    I don't use shaders, but my 750Ti behaves perfectly well even with some of the higher res textures.
  15. ChemE

    ChemE New Member


    I built this for $400 by getting pieces when they were deeply on sale. This runs all the 1.10 packs at 120+fps (I keep it throttled down to 120 b/c no point wasting electricity). As others have said, you can build a very cheap desktop which owns modded MC but my experience with laptops running even 30fps is not good.
    Hambeau likes this.
  16. KingTriaxx

    KingTriaxx Forum Addict

    Blergh. Why that processor? Isn't it worth spending a bit more money for something capable of running other things?

    It's also flagging the video card being too long for the case, but that's probably solvable.
  17. ChemE

    ChemE New Member

    The video card does indeed fit but assembly has to be done very carefully. It probably takes me an extra 3 minutes to build it because the vid card is a titch too long. The processor for a few reasons:

    1) I was able to buy it for $49.99 at the MicroCenter in Cincinnati
    2) You can overclock it to 4.0GHz on the stock air cooler; as fast as the Devil's Canyon at like 1/20th the price!
    3) Modded MC is almost totally single-threaded
    4) This chip has almost the same IPC as iCore7 procs
    5) The computer I built has exactly one task: play modded MC
  18. KingTriaxx

    KingTriaxx Forum Addict

    Fair enough. I'd prefer something a bit meatier, like an AMD FX-6300 which is a bit older, but doesn't have to be overclocked. It'll automatically turbo up to 4.0 as demand requires.

    I have a motherboard that's technically too large for my case, so I know about that sort of thing. I prefer to have more clearance if possible, but fair enough. I'd just switch to it's slightly larger brother the 130, which has a longer card clearance.
  19. ChemE

    ChemE New Member

    Yeah I get that I'm odd in that I built a box that only plays modded MC. A beefier CPU doesn't have to add much cost to the rig that is for sure. Still it is nice that we don't need multi-thousand dollar machines to play modded MC. A big part of the reason for the case and part list I arrived at is I wanted to end up with the smallest lowest-powered box that could own kitchen sink packs. To this end (and as is my usual way) I pushed everything to the edge and well past what most people would do.
  20. KingTriaxx

    KingTriaxx Forum Addict

    I like the freedom to move most of the non-threaded stuff off my Minecraft core, so I love having the additional cores offered, so I can have all those little background things running on other cores and have most of the core to MC. Which I can't really do with a simple dual-core. (Can't move the windows stuff which is the biggest hog, which is sad, but most of a core is better than all on one core.)

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