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Computer System Requirements To Play Casino Games

November 26th, 2013

Computer System Requirements

Computer Requirements To Play Casino Games

Since you’re reading this you’re already online and, we assume, you’re interested in getting started in online gaming. Whether you end up playing right away or downloading software to play you’ll want to stop for a moment and ask yourself “What do I need?”

When it comes to the computer hardware that a particular piece of software requires there’s an old bad habit in the software industry that you may well run up against: low-balling. Basically low-balling is telling you that you only need a Commodore 64 and a rotary phone to run a piece of software. Really? While the software in question may, technically, run on that piece of hardware it’s probably going to be the case that no human in their right mind would have any interest in doing so. It’ll run too slow, it’ll crash all day long, and you’ll never see the nice graphics and hear the dealer’s voice when the dice come out. Let’s be honest: the show is part of what makes these things fun. If you can’t get the show, you may not want to stick around for very long.

Performance and feature capability are routinely neglected when it comes to making “minimum requirements” statements. In other words, yes it will run on that machine but, no you won’t like it very much. So how do you decide what you really need? The complicated answer is “try it and find out”. The simple answer is “read on”.

Take Me To The Show

Of the hundreds of casino sites I’ve visited and dozens of software packages I’ve downloaded and installed I’d have to say that multi-media is where it’s at. Almost everybody offers sound and animation in their packages and that is no small task. In order to do those things you need a system with a reasonable amount of power and capability. So what’s the baseline, the absolute rock-bottom that’ll get you up and playing and allow you to stay up and playing?

Baseline System

IBM PC compatible computer, Pentium 100 MHz


16-bit color video card (800×600 resolution)

SVGA Monitor

Windows 98/95/NT

Microsoft compatible mouse

Sound Blaster compatible sound card

20 MB free hard drive space (varies)

CD-ROM drive (8x)

14.4 KB modem

The Baseline System can be had for less than $500 and you’ll be able to run most of the available casino software. This includes the download and no-download varieties. You’ll have some graphics, some sound, your performance will be tolerable and your online speeds will be acceptable. Also, the CD-ROM drive will allow you to order casino software on CD, which might be a good idea as your download speeds are going to be a bit pokey.

What won’t you have with the Baseline? The one big truth in the software industry is that it marches ever on. Yesterday’s “good enough” machine is today’s boat anchor and that’s just the way it works.

The newer versions of gaming software are using 24 or 32 bit color, streaming multiple voice channels, adding impressive play animations and generally making the gaming experience pretty enjoyable. Most of this fun is beyond the capability of our Baseline System. If you’ve never seen a Craps table under the evening lights in full, high resolution color, well, you’ve missed a little something. When the dice roll out, and the shadows bounce across the felt, it can look pretty good. Not to mention the dealer announcing “they’re coming out” and the sounds of the dice hitting the end of the table. These are higher end multi-media features but they are also really nice to see and hear. This brings us to our Typical System.

Typical System

IBM PC compatible computer, Pentium II 200 MHz


16-bit color video card (800×600 resolution)

SVGA Monitor

Windows 98/95/NT

Microsoft compatible mouse

Sound Blaster AWE 32 sound card

20 MB free hard drive space (varies)

CD-ROM drive (16x or better)

14.4 KB modem

The major upgrades we’ve made here are the processor, the color card and the sound card. These bump the price up around the $800 range. With this you’ve stepped into the modern age of multi-media and there isn’t much you’re going to miss with a system like this. Compromises here are limited to download speeds, online performance and game play speeds. Here you get pretty close to the Ferrari but you’re limited to Residential Zone speeds. So where can we go from here? Ever higher, ever higher.

Highend System

IBM PC compatible computer, Pentium II 400 MHz


32-bit color video card with graphics acceleration (TNT, Voodoo, or equiv.)

1000 x 800 or better monitor

Windows 98/NT

Microsoft compatible mouse

Sound Blaster PCI128 or better sound card (or compatible)

200 MB free hard drive space

CD-ROM drive (24x or better)

56 KB modem

Nothing lacking here and you’re loaded for anything the games can throw at you. Graphics and sound are up to any software’s demands: looking good and sounding great. Online and download times are as good as they need to be. There’s enough space on the hard drive to install a couple full-suite gaming systems and not have to sweat it. And that extra RAM will give your casino software a little elbow room: less swapping, better performance. The price tag is now around $1000, lower if you shop around.

Of course, we can keep climbing the scale, but the truth is you’ve met the needs of modern casino software and if you go higher it’s because there are other things you’re looking for. Let those requirements be your shopping guide and know that you’ve got your gambling needs well under control.

Sum it up

So that’s about it: the basics for less than $500, the full meal deal for around $1000.

It’s pretty likely that you’ll find these systems, especially the Typical and Highend, will satisfy your other computing needs too. The Baseline is pretty much out of date and will become an increasing liability as Internet and application demands press on. The Typical System will handle most modern software, though it’ll never be an eye-opener; the Highend is ready to take on the now-emerging generation of applications.

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