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Old 08-13-2006, 06:50 AM   #1
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Question Upgrading my Computer

I posted a thread a couple of days ago, but I realized that I wasn't asking the right questions. So I'm going to start over with this new thread, I hope you don't mind.

I want to upgrade my slow unstable computer to a pretty good gaming computer. I already have a case, CD-Drive, Floppy Drive, 1 80GB WD HDD, 1 9GB WD HDD, Sound Card. I want to replace my: Motherboard, Processor, Ram, Video card, and PSU. My budget is under $500. My goal is to have a computer capable of playing next-gen games, and be able to play current-gen games on medium-high settings.

If you could recommend any products or a computer build that would be awesome.

Also, if you can explain the benefits of Dual-Core vs Single-core and DDR vs DDR2 in a gaming PC.
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Old 08-13-2006, 08:11 AM   #2
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

Dual core processors are cooler when they are at the same speed as single core processors and they can multitask more effectively. I might be wrong, I don't know alot about them, but thats what I have picked up.

EDIT: As for DDR2 I'm not sure but I think the benefits are that it can transfer data faster and can therefore gives a faster game speed.
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Old 08-13-2006, 08:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

in gaming dual cores don't really have an advantage yet since most games are not designed to utilize the dual core processing. But there are some games that take full advantage of it, and in the future more and more games will start to take more advantage of the dual core processing.

And ddr2 ram is much faster than normal ddr ram. The most common ddr ram used has a speed of 400mhz. There are some faster ones, but most mobos support 400mhz and slower. ddr2 ram is capable of higher clock speeds, up to 1000mhz.

$500 is quite a small budget if u want quality parts. U could get a low end s939 amd x2 dual core cpu, 1gb ddr400 (2gb if u can afford it) , 7600GT, a decent mobo and then spend the rest on a good psu.
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Old 08-13-2006, 08:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

Go with 939 since chances are you got a IDE HD. Also a 3800x2, 7600GT, 2 gig ram, PSU, and mobo should run you near 500. heres a part list.

MOBO-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813131569 79.99

GPU-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814130017 159.99

PSU-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817148001 59.99

Ram-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16820231079 87.99

CPU-http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16819103562 147.00

Secondary GPU
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814150130 its a lot cheaper.
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Old 08-13-2006, 07:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814150130
XFX PVT42EUDE3 Geforce 6800 XTreme 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card
OR
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814130020
eVGA 256-P2-N541-TX Geforce 7600GS 256MB GDDR2 PCI Express x16 Video Card

The x2, is kind of expensive considering the 64 3800+ (not x2) is 50 bucks cheaper and has a higher clock speed. Also, I'm probably going to upgrade my computer again in 3 years, so I don't think i need to get dual-core yet if current games don't use it to its full potential.
That RAM doesn't look very reliable, 4 votes and 2 reviews, which aren't even that great. Any suggestions for RAM around $80-90 for 1gb?
The PSU has some great reviews, but it's a little too flamboyant (sp?) for my taste, will http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817153023 get the job done?
Also, this isn't really that related to the topic, I've never overclocked a computer, is it as easy as pressing some buttons on a program? Or do I have to physically mod the computer. I'm really considering getting the single core 3800+ rather than the dual-core because of budget reasons.
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Old 08-13-2006, 07:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

You might want to look in the processor section for why dual core cpus are better than single cores. They're built to handle more multitasking, and better overall multimedia performance. If you're on a budget, go for a lower end AMD X2 processor like the 3800+. This ASUS mobo looks good for the price. The thing when buying ram is to look for the lowest latency speeds you can get for the price. Get two of those Patriot bad boys, to get 1 gig of ram. For a new video card, I'd recommend a nVidia 6600gt, or a ATI x850xt. A new psu would be this Thermaltake. In the end, I think you're probably going to be going over your budget of $500, but it'll be worth it in the end.

Edit - Just did the math, comes out to $484.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817153023
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813131570
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820220018
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Old 08-13-2006, 08:32 PM   #7
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

I've seen reviews of people that bought the graphics card that im planning on buying, and they all say that they can run the games that I have (HL2/CS/CS:S) high settings as well as other demanding games, and soem of them have way poorer CPUs than the 3800+ and still rave at how well they can play games. I'm very content with being able to play HL2 on high settings. I don't think i need Dual-core considering i don't really do much else while i play games. Besides games, i listen to my 15gb+ of music and surf the web, so I don't need dual core. I've finally chosen my build tell me what you guys think:
Mobo: ASUS A8N5X Socket 939 NVIDIA nForce4 ATX AMD Motherboard - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16813131569
Video Card: XFX PVT42EUDE3 Geforce 6800 XTreme 256MB GDDR3 PCI Express x16 Video Card - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814150130
PSU: Thermaltake TR2 W0070 ATX 430W Power Supply - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817153023
RAM: Patriot 1GB 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200) Unbuffered System Memory Model PEP1G3200LL - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16820220045
CPU: AMD Athlon 64 3800+ Venice 2000MHz HT Socket 939 Processor Model ADA3800BPBOX - Retail
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819103531
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Old 08-13-2006, 08:36 PM   #8
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

That's a nice build there Kickerz29. That should serve you well.
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Old 08-13-2006, 08:44 PM   #9
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

Looks excellent. I'm glad you kept some of my suggestions!

Edit - You might not need the dual core cpu now, but it'll future proof your comp down the road. As more and more programs utilize dual core technology, it would be a smart buy.
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Old 08-14-2006, 02:44 AM   #10
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Default Re: Upgrading my Computer

Great thanks for the feedback.
Total cost before tax/shipping: $460

Tax and shipping takes it up to around 510, and if the rebates go through ($45 bucks worth) then i'll be at 465.

PerfectSK, the dual-core would show poorer performance in games for right now, and i'm goign to have to upgrade my computer in a few years anyways, and the cpus in 3 years will be even better and performance. Also the dual core is out of my price range ($50 mor expensive) not to mention the DDR2 800 ram that would have to accompany it.
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