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murdock

Upgrading system need recommendations

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murdock    164
I currently have a system with the following specs and am looking to upgrade with a budget of about $300. AMD Sempron 3100+ 1.25 GB Ram 800 GB of HDD space(300 + 500) Win XP Pro Nvidia GeForce 6600 500w PSU HP LightScribe DVD Burner MSI KT800 MOBO Dynex generic Soundcard(Similar to SB Live Value) I was looking at a ASUS board that had a built in Geforce 8300 and then upgrading the video card later. Looking for suggestions as to what to put in the upgraded system. I'll probably salvage everything but the Ram, Mobo, cpu, and video card(it's dying anyway).

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BeanDog    1065
What do you want your computer to do better? If your computer slows to a crawl when you have 10 web browsers open, you should just upgrade to 3GB of RAM (it's really cheap, you should probably just do that anyway). If it takes forever to boot up or start applications, you should get an Intel X25-M SSD as your system drive--I did this recently, and I could not believe the difference it made. If you want to play FEAR 2, you should upgrade to a newer graphics card; this $80 card is one I'm considering because it doesn't require external power, runs quiet, and will run Left 4 Dead at 1920x1200 at 40fps--you'll never see that performance from an 8300.

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Joshuad    100
With a $300 budget, I would recommend upgrading your memory to 2-3 GB, and spend the rest on upgrading your video card, the rest should do you fine for the software of today. It really all depends on what you are doing, however. If you are doing audio processing, obviously upgrading the sound card would be more important. If you are doing 3D programming or modeling, the video card and processor would be more beneficial. If you are going that route, however, I wouldn't recommend upgrading to a motherboard based on its build in video, when you are using built in video, you have to remember it is sharing far more throughput than if you were to get a PCIE video card.

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murdock    164
The problem lies in the fact that in order to upgrade my video card I have to go with a new Mobo as the mobo I have doesn't support anything besides AGP.

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Drathis    141
That system looks a little outdated. Might be tricky to upgrade it with just 300$. Unless there is something really specific that you want upgraded, I'd recommend a bigger budget.

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murdock    164
I was hoping to upgrade the CPU/Mobo/Ram then a few weeks later add on a video card. Hence why I was looking at a board with a built in 8300 to last till I can get the cash for a stand alone video card

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owiley    257
if the the system is am2 you can use that old cpu and 300 is enough to start out with i brought mines piece by piece it not a monster but its all right

if i was you grab thing you plan to use and just rebuild get it from newegg they have great deals

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Drew_Benton    1861
$300 is more than enough to get a new cpu, mobo, ram, and video card.

Here's an AMD/Nvidia combination for ~255 w/ shipping:

1. BFG Tech BFGE96512GTOCBE GeForce 9600 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail - $80

2. G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model F2-6400CL5D-4GBNT - Retail - $43

3. AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600 Brisbane 2.9GHz Socket AM2 65W Dual-Core Processor Model ADO5600DOBOX - Retail | BIOSTAR A760G M2+ AM2+/AM2 AMD 760G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail - $118

Now, you could shave off $18 and go with a weaker more energy efficient, but weaker CPU, but I decided not to skimp on that. The combo for that is located here though if you are interested.

Since there is about $45 to spare, that means you could push to the 300 limit and get a 9800 GT card as well if you wanted. NewEgg doesn't sell 8800GTs anymore so you are pretty much stuck with the 9X00 series.

XFX PVT98GYDLH GeForce 9800 GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card - Retail - $128 (and comes with a $30 MIR)

So, with shipping, you can get a 2.9 GHz AMD Dual Core CPU + new motherboard + 4gb ram + 9800GT 512mb video card for right at $302. You also room to downgrade to a cheaper 9800 GT brand (I only purchase XFX, but you can save some going cheaper) or even to a 9600 GT series to save even more but sacrifice gaming performance (9600 is certainly a nice upgrade from what you have right now though, so no worries there). Most of the additional cost of a computer lies in the things you already have, case, hd, psu, optical drive, those things all add up!

All you have to do is make sure this stuff will actually fit in your current case and you should be good to go. Of course, I can't guarantee all the products suggested will work together, so it will be up to you to determine if they will and spend your money accordingly. I did however, only post parts I would buy with my own money if I were in your situation. The only difference is, I'd had paid a little more for a Gigabyte motherboard as that's the brand I use and have never had problems with.

One last very important thing, your current PSU might not be reusable, so if that's the case, you will need to pluck down another $40 or so to get one compatible with this newer AMD board. In that event, you will want to go with the cheaper 9600 GT so you can fit in a decent PSU to power your parts. I only buy Rosewill, so here's one that should work and won't break the bank. Given my original configuration above and this PSU, your total comes just under $300 with shipping reaching your $300 target.

So, this post is just to show you $300 is plenty nowadays to get a good set of main components for a system. Depending on your computer needs, you can either scale up or down on the video card or cpu, but you will need to check your current PSU with the new motherboard to see if it is compatible or not. Given how old an Sempreon is, I'd advise a new PSU and not risk using the older one on newer parts.

Good luck!

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murdock    164
I was looking at a combo with a Quad core Phenom; however, would the Quad core be worth it?

The uses for this comp will be game dev 2d and 3d and gaming for the most part maybe some light video editing.

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nuvem    326
Quote:
Original post by BeanDog
What do you want your computer to do better? If your computer slows to a crawl when you have 10 web browsers open, you should just upgrade to 3GB of RAM (it's really cheap, you should probably just do that anyway). If it takes forever to boot up or start applications, you should get an Intel X25-M SSD as your system drive--I did this recently, and I could not believe the difference it made. If you want to play FEAR 2, you should upgrade to a newer graphics card; this $80 card is one I'm considering because it doesn't require external power, runs quiet, and will run Left 4 Dead at 1920x1200 at 40fps--you'll never see that performance from an 8300.


The 4670 is nice, but the 4770 for $20 more has a lot more bang for the buck, and better power efficiency thanks to the 40nm process.

For the OP, if you're intending on gaming, it's really worth getting a board that supports PCI-E.

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murdock    164
my thoughts exactly. I need to upgrade the board so I can get a video card that can run modern games at the least.

So I guess the question now is to go Quad core or dual core?

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nuvem    326
Quote:
Original post by murdock
my thoughts exactly. I need to upgrade the board so I can get a video card that can run modern games at the least.

So I guess the question now is to go Quad core or dual core?


Budget for everything else first, and then see what you can afford. Between the dual at home and the quad at work I don't really notice much of a difference most of the time.

Video card wise Drew mentioned the 9600 GT, which is probably your best bet if you can't spend more than $80, but if you can hit $100 (some have $10 MIR as well) the 4770 offers performance on par or above the 9800 GT.

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