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I know that if I want to get more socketed items, I should have as few +magic find % as possible, but what do I have to do to get socketed class-specific items with better base bonuses?

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(Everything written here applies to both regular and class-specific items.)

There is no surefireway to find socketed items via drops. The drops are completely random, but I've included some tips below.

It is possible to create socketed items from non-socketed items. More on this below. Note that you cannot add additional sockets to an item that already has sockets.

To the best of my knowledge, there is no specific area/monster(s) that drop more class-specific items instead of regular items.

Note that if you want to make runeword items, you can only use runewords on non-magical (white) items (no unique, rare, set, crafted, or magic items).

Finding socketed items:

If you want to find high quality items with open sockets (or without sockets if you are planning to add them later), the best thing to do is kill high level (Hell difficulty) monsters and hope for a good drop. If you want lower quality items, look in lower level areas.

As you mentioned, having a low Magic Find will increase the number of Non-Magical (white) items that you find which is important if you want to use runewords on them.

Hell difficulty (or lower if you want lower quality items) Cow Level is good for finding socketed items because you can kill many monsters quickly (with a good character, build, and gear), and they tend to drop lots of high quality Non-Magical (white) items.

To help determine where you are more likely to find appropriate quality items, refer to this chart (a higher alvl typically means better quality loot, including higher base bonuses to class-specific items):

The higher the number designated in the chart, the higher the quality of items that will drop from those areas.

Adding sockets to an item:

Adding sockets to an item which does not already have sockets can be achieved two ways:

  1. In Act V (Lord of Destruction expansion), if you complete the quest Siege on Harrogath for Larzuk, he will reward you by adding socket(s) to an item of your choosing. This is a one time (per difficulty, so a total of three times) reward which does not have to be used immediately and can be saved for later. Depending on the item you use with this quest reward, it will have the following effect:
    • Non-Magical Items (white) receive the maximum amount of sockets that they can hold. (the maximum sockets an item can hold is based on its ilvl and the item type)
    • Magic Items (blue) receive 1 or 2 sockets with a 50% chance for either.
    • Set Items (green), Rare Items (bright yellow), Unique Items (pale/faded yellow), and Crafted Items (orange) will all receive 1 socket.
  2. There are Horadric Cube recipes which will add sockets to a Non-Magical (white) item. These recipes randomly pick a number from 1-6 and give the item a number of sockets equal to the number picked, or as many sockets as it can hold (whichever is lowest). The recipes are as follows:
    • Tal + Thul + Perfect Topaz + Non-Magical Body Armor
    • Ral + Amn + Perfect Amethyst + Non-Magical Weapon
    • Ral + Thul + Perfect Saphire + Non-Magical Helm
    • Tal + Amn + Perfect Ruby + Non-Magical Shield

Note that using the second method on an item that can only hold 3 sockets will have a 1/6 chance of getting 1 socket, 1/6 chance of getting 2 sockets, and 4/6 chance of getting 3 sockets. (if the system chooses 3-6, they will each give the item 3 sockets, the maximum it can hold)

Trading for socketed items:

The only other way to get the items you desire (whatever they may be) is to trade!

This game is all about bartering with other players. Join a game or make a game and start asking around for the item you want. There are also plenty of communities and forums that still actively play Diablo 2 and help people trade in it. :) (d2jsp for instance is still very active in Diablo 2 as of 2013.)

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