TechSpot

Need recommendations for gaming PC upgrade

By Beclour
Jan 2, 2006
  1. I'm building my first serious gaming computer and I'm looking for any
    recommendations on what I should upgrade next.

    Here's whats in my comp:
    HDD: Seagate 300GB HD 7200/8MB/ATA-100
    Mobo: Biostar i945PA7 Socket 775 Motherboard
    CPU: Intel Celeron 346 3.06Ghz 533FSB Socket 775
    Case/PSU: Premium Black 2535 ATX 400w 20/24 pin Mid-T
    Vid card: Connect 3D Radeon X700 256MB PCIe w/DVI/TV-OUT
    Optical: NEC ND-3550 Black 16x DVD Burner in Retail Box
    RAM: Corsair Value Select 1024MB PC4200 DDR2 533MHz
    CPU fan: Masscool Intel Socket 775 Copper Core CPU Fan

    I'm looking to be able to play the latest games and most of the
    near-future releases as well. Maybe enough to keep me going
    for at least a year.

    I know a lot of people are heavily into SLI now and my mobo does
    sort of support it. But I'm not a big fan of the nivida chipset. So
    if possible, keep vid card recommendations to ATI chipset.

    Budget of roughly $100 per item to upgrade.
     
  2. LipsOfVenom

    LipsOfVenom TS Rookie Posts: 256

    1 more gig of ram...the value select corsair...i have the same 1 haha good bang for your buck...x700 won't run all the games in the future...should get an x850 with crossfire capabilities...but thats about $250...other than RAM i don't see many other modifications since you only want to spend $100 per item...oh and the CPU could be changed since celeron isn't that fast...even a P4 2.4 GHz could beat a celeron and also the celeron won't be able to take advantage of your other components maximum speed capabilities.
     
  3. Beclour

    Beclour TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Thanks for the advice. Got a couple questions.

    Does anyone happen to have a link explaining what crossfire is? I've
    had little luck getting detail on it via google

    Also, can you explain what you mean about the celeron.
    I thought the speed being 3.06ghz and having a decent FSB meant it
    was pretty much top of the line.
    Why is the Celeron bad/slow?

    Thanks again for the help. I've been out of the hardware field for
    several years and most everything I know is outdated.
     
  4. DonNagual

    DonNagual TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 3,566

    Crossfire is ATI's answer to Nvidia's SLI setup. My personal opinion is that it is not really worth it. Stick with one good card. By the time you come around to adding a second identical card, it will be out of date anyways. That said... I am using SLI, and adding a second video card this week (not taking my own advice)...

    Here is a good article on Crossfire for you: http://www.neoseeker.com/Articles/Hardware/Previews/aticrossfiretech/

    As for celerons (or celery... as I like to call them) they are not designed for gaming at all. They have lower FSB and lower cache. Basically, a P4 (or an Athlon) can store more on the chip at a time, wereas the celery would have to continuously go back to the bus to get the next set of instructions. It just can't work as fast. Those CPUs are designed for budget level computers, and are great for BASIC needs, but not for gaming.
     
  5. AKirru

    AKirru TS Rookie Posts: 53

    This is just my opinion .. but for your price range I think the 6800 series of cards from Nvidia is a much wiser choise. They are much more future proof thanks to features like Shader Model 3.0 anyways that is just my 2 cents. :grinthumb

    The 6800 GS is amazing bang for buck! (I know you said you aren't a fan of Nvidia, neither am I really but they have the best card at that price range. x800 GTO is another option I guess .. or if you can really stretch your budget ATi's new x1800 chips so you can get ATi and the latest things like SM3).


    Andy
     
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