TechSpot

AMD Athlon 64 3500+ upgrade

By TomJ
Aug 9, 2009
  1. Hi guys,

    Just wanting to know if anyone can offer me some advice about an upgrade for my processor, and perhaps graphics card also.

    the processor is a 'AMD Athlon(tm) 64 Processor 3500+ [x86 Family 15 Model 7 Stepping 10]'

    From reading around, am I right in thinking I can upgrade to a dual core processor WITHOUT having to change the motherboard? Something like that would be Ideal, as i'm not wanting to spend alot on this. With that information in mind, what processors could I realistically be looking at?

    Now, the graphics card is an ATI RADEON X800 XL, with 256MB, and it says the chip type is ATI Display Adapter (0x554D). First of all would a new processor affect this card, and second of all would any of you recommend any upgrades?

    The computer is a few years old now, and it still runs fine, it's been a great machine, got 3GB of ram also, but just with some games, like flight sim etc, its getting a bit slow, so any upgrades that can be done relatively cheaply, i'd be greatly appreciative of any advice.

    Thanks for your time.

    Tom
     
  2. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    Hi Tom,
    welcome to Techspot BTW :)
    can you give us your system specs? motherboard model, Psu model. etc.
     
  3. D3CRYPTM4ST3R

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Posts: 54

    If u can get us the type of motherboard you have, we can tell you wether you can upgrade to dual core or not . It depends from the motherboard you have.

    2) About the Graphics , if you are a game-freak the graphic card does not provide you a good fps while gaming . So my recommendation is that you sell it on ebay and buy an ATI HD4650 1 GB Card, i am not recommending this type of card without reason, well at least here in Germany the card combines high performance with reasonable prices ( 45 EUR which is about 65 USD) however it can run any game you find in the market.

    3) Theoretically I dont think that the processor can affect the performance of the Graphic card (only indirectly), however it effects your gaming performance and may also contribute to reducing the fps rate in a game (that´s why it is indirectly affiliated with reducing the performance of the Graphics)

    4) well if you want any advice concerning an upgrade i would get something like the ASROCK Mainboard since it s one of the cheapest mainboards ( in average) in the market and it has a remarquable performance especially if u like overclocking processors ( I am an intel fan by the way) .
     
  4. TomJ

    TomJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks guys!
    According to info from the DirectX Diagnostic, I found this for model 'RS480_ AWRDACPI'

    When googled, says the motherboard is a MS-7093

    Is that of help to you? Any suggestions are always appreciated!

    And thanks for the advice about the graphics card!!! That price doesnt seem too bad. Any recommendations as to where to buy?? Is ebay a bit dodgy for stuff like this??

    I really appreciate the help!

    Thanks,
    Tom
     
  5. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    D3,
    there is no reason to buy the 1gb version of of the HD 4650, in a lower end card such as that, it does not make use of extra Vram, and in some cases can actually slow its performance.

    a cpu can very much effect the performance of the gpu, to little cpu will bottleneck a more capable graphics card. and most modern titles make use of 2 cores and in some cases 3.
     
  6. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

  7. TomJ

    TomJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks red,
    What you think, worth it or not?

    Tom
     
  8. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    thats a tough one, you can only go from the 3500+ to the 4000+ athlon, not worth it. you can get better performance by upgrading your video card (the hd 4650 that D3 recommended is a good option....get the 512mb version though) better would be replace the system if you can. you can get a retail machine for 4-$450 that will run rings around what you have now....just my humble opinion.
     
  9. D3CRYPTM4ST3R

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Posts: 54

    Well i don t think so dude, cause mine makes use of the Vram,
     
  10. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    only if your gaming at 1900x1200, and he wont be doing that with a athlon 3500+................dude

    and btw, how do you know its using the full 1gb?

    go find reviews of low end cards that have 1gb of ram and they all come to the same conclusion. it does not increase performance, can actually slow it some a might, and is done as a marketing gimmick when the manufactures get there hands on a really great buy of inexpensive ram.
     
  11. D3CRYPTM4ST3R

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Posts: 54

    All what i meant ,was that it can "theoritically make use of the Vram" in my PC with a 2 GB ram the ATI Catalyst states that the card "can" get an extra 746 Mb ( a total of 1746 MB) I didn´t state though that my card makes full use of the dedicated 1 GB , sorry it was a missunderstanding i thought u meant it cannot make use of the Vram at all .
     
  12. TomJ

    TomJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks guys for all your help, its been really insightful! IF I were to change the motherboard in order to get a nice new processor, and a new graphics card, will other things have to be changed also? Along with price, its the thought of knock-on effects on the rest of the machine that concerns me, as you can probably tell, I dont have much knowledge in this area and don't really want to give myself more problems by changing things here and there.

    thanks guys!

    Tom
     
  13. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    you probably not see better prices than right now. you can most likely use your cd drive, and hard drive, thats about it. as i said though, you can get a system that will way out perform what you have now for about $400-450, possibly less.
     
  14. D3CRYPTM4ST3R

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Posts: 54

    Well, if you are going to buy a new mobo , you ll need to check if it supports your HD, i mean in some motherboards you cannot connect IDE Harddrives only through appropriate adapters. you should also make sure that the mobo you re intending to buy supports the kind of processor you have in mind, for Intel based mobos i guess it is recommended you have these 24 pin connectors. Also check for the choice of RAMs if they are supported by the kind of MoBo you want to buy. This can be found on the datasheet of the MoBo found on the Producer-website. I hope i haven´t forgot anything
     
  15. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,431   +28

    On a relatively lower mid-end card like that, 256MB would be the only amount of VRAM that is most frequently used by games, since resolutions that make use of upto 512MB would make most games unplayable without turning down the IQ settings (assuming you prefer higher IQ settings compared to higher resolutions).
     
  16. Technochicken

    Technochicken TechSpot Paladin Posts: 729

    If you buy a new motherboard as opposed to an entire new system, keep in mind that you will also have to do a fresh installation of windows, so make sure to back up anything important before you make the upgrade.
     
  17. D3CRYPTM4ST3R

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Posts: 54

    That s not what the ATI Catalyst indicates
    .
     
  18. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    nowhere in CCC does it indicate how much Vram is being used
     
  19. D3CRYPTM4ST3R

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Posts: 54

    Not being used but can be used
     
  20. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,219   +157

    that doesn't even make sense, it shows you how much Vram is on the card but its has no impact on how much is being used. you can have a card with 5gb vram )if you could find one) its meaningless.
     
  21. TomJ

    TomJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for all your help guys. After all your advice, and alot of thought, I think I will go for the HD 4650 512mb, it seems very reasonable.
     
  22. TomJ

    TomJ TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Longer term though, I will be looking to replace the machine in the not too distant future. Ideally id like something good for games, multi media, etc, plus capable of all other requirements for a family pc. We've generally avoided the big brand names like compaq etc, the one we have now was a speciality one, (though now gone bust). Any adivce on what you think we should go for, under £1000 ($1500) would be much appreciated if you could spare the time.

    Thanks for all your help!
     
  23. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,431   +28

    Do you want a pre-built machine or will you be looking towards assembling one? An assembled PC will usually cost you significantly less than a pre-built one.
     
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add New Comment

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...