Question about upgrading.

By GameAddict
Nov 6, 2002
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  1. Current system
    AMD Athon XP 2000
    Windows XP Home ED
    1gig DDR Ram (PC 2100 I belive)
    60 gig Western Digital HD
    Geforce4 TI 4600 XP Vison Tek
    ASUS A7A266-E Mother Board (bought in Feb.'02)
    Nothing overclocked.

    With 30.82 drivers I score around 10,300 on 3D Mark. With the beta drivers (41.72 I think) I scrore around 11k. These scores are after a reformat about a month ago. I defrag once a week. I have the latest verson of cacheman to help with memory useage. Not alot of programs running in background.

    I have been beta testing a very graphic entinsive game called Asherons Call 2. I run AC2 in high and very high settings pretty good except in crowded areas. Real crowded areas (40+ people) it drops to crap, 10 second freezes are the worst I have seen. EVEN if I turn all settings down as low as possible. Last night I was playing Never Winter Nights in 1600x1200, all graphics maxed and occasionaly I was getting a little slow down which didn't seem right for my system but usually it did good. My brother has similar system but has a KT400 motherboard and he does seem to get pretty good preformance.

    Some times when I start a game or right after I turn my computer on my HD makes a weird sound. Kinda like a bogged down vibrating sound of a fan starting up, but I know its my HD not a fan. Wonder if my HD could have some porblems.

    Anyway, I will prolly be picking up a Geforce5 when they hit stores but since that may be Jan-Feb of next year I'm looking for advice one what else to upgrade. Do you think a new motherboard w/ 8xagp for Geforce5 when it hit's shelves or hard drive with 8mb cache would give a good increase? I have heard about the KT400's and the new MB based on Nforce2 chip set are suppose to be nice.

    Oh well, any suggestions?
  2. StormBringer

    StormBringer Newcomer, in training Posts: 2,871

    Well, I'd be doing something about the HDD, sounds like there may be a problem there. If you are having performance slowdowns and hearing funny noises coming from it, that is a good sign to check it out.

    I'm not sure what kinds of diagnostic tools WD offers, if any but you might want to find something that will run a low level scan and repair. First thing you need to do though is check the cables on the HDD, also check the ribbon cable where it connects to the mobo. You might also want to think about defragging less. Partition your HDD so that you can reduce the area that becomes fragmented. Something like this
    C: OS and Apps
    D: Pagefile
    E: Games
    F: Music/Movies
    G: Data
    Or something similar. This will keep the partitions that don't change often from becoming fragmented as often and if you set the pagefile to the size of the partition, it will never become fragged.
  3. TS | Crazyace

    TS | Crazyace Newcomer, in training Posts: 329

    The hard drive needs to be checked for errors. It doesn't sound good.

    The only recommendation I could recommend would be a new motherboard/chip.;

    There are much faster chips out there now, ie Intel P4. Your XP2000 is what, 1.7Mhz? Whatever it is, 3.0GHz is much faster, so do yourself a favor, and upgrade to a good Intel chip/motherboard.
  4. GameAddict

    GameAddict Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Thanks for the info. I was trying to go the least expensive route I could. Wouldn't going with a P4 cause me to have to change over to RDram?
  5. MrGaribaldi

    MrGaribaldi TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 2,802

    When the P4 was released, you had to use RDram, but not anymore...

    Just make sure the mobo supports DDR, and you should do fine... :)
  6. TS | Crazyace

    TS | Crazyace Newcomer, in training Posts: 329

    an i845 board will do good.. They are very solid, and very compatable. You can get them for a decent price, and they support DDR RAM. I would highly recommend the Epox 4BDA2+. I have used 5 different i845 boards, and this one seems to be the most feature loaded.

    CA
  7. young&wild

    young&wild TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,268

    Perhaps you might want add another hard disk, these days 60Gb aint enough for some gamers. CPU seems to be adequate for the mean time. You should get a board that supports 333MHZ DDR.
  8. Arris

    Arris TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 4,508   +81

    Personally I wouldn't be upgrading that system because of the performance of a Beta game. I'd at least wait a while until the full game is released and see if the issues are not resolved then. You could check you have the latest drivers for your Ali chipset on your motherboard. Have you reported these slow downs to the game developer? You system is fine as it is and should handle just about anything you can throw at it. Even with the power of the latest graphics cards (Geforce4 is now about 10months old) always playing at 1600x1200 with all graphic options maxed can be demanding depending on the game engine.
  9. Justin

    Justin Newcomer, in training Posts: 1,595

    Erm... you're suggesting he UPGRADE already?

    Wowza... The issue may be a bad HDD(I personally loathe western digital), I would recommend against going out and buying a whole new system simply because of beta game performance and what may be a dying or misconfigured HDD.

    You do know that the XP 2000 is intended to compete against the p4 2.0ghz, not the p4 1.7ghz, correct? Measuring a processors performance only by its clock speed is very sloppy, very poor, and very inaccurate.

    Also, with a CPU that fast as it is (the xp 2200), what could you possibly need a faster one for now? 3ghz intel chips are going to retail for, what, $450+ ? I'd rather pay rent ;)

    People.. upgrading for no reason.. sheesh
  10. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 Newcomer, in training Posts: 6,504

    i haven't (in this drunken state) had time to read all of this thread. However, I think I already agree with the Soul Harvester....

    Man, my machine plays CRAP with DOOMIII leaked demo and I am in no fit state to upgrade board, chip and vid card accordingly...

    Jeez... you can't run some high end demo... big deal.... my machine does not hyper-thread and does not have 2GB of RAM... you see me running to the computer shop with my next months rent month in hand???? You see me not eating for the next 3 weeks for some next CPU?

    ALWAYS WAIT till you have had TOTAL utilitity from your current board and chip before putting it in the bin... Its better for the environment if nothing else...

    You're machine is well better than mine and I am sure I am having more joy from mine than you are from yours....

    its what you can do with your machine with YOUR MIND that needs upgrading... this is true for us all.... If you have crap fps in some beta demo... who carez???? Drive your machine to the max before you upgrade, that's what I say! Drive it to its limits before you put it in the bin. Generally, I try to ensure that I can cheaply upgrade to 2x my current MHz before I bin that mobo and have to reinstall everything.... Its not a race, my man!!!

    More than anything, its about what you can do with the technology given you. I have known people to run amazing MATLAB experiments ( http://www.mathworks.com/ ) with machines that were a piece of crap. Don't fall into the trap of these people who upgrade every 3 months because the market tells them to.... :evil: /...

    If you are rich and can afford it, then that's cool... I am always one for getting HEAVY METAL but if not then make do with what you have until you are sick of it, please....
  11. StormBringer

    StormBringer Newcomer, in training Posts: 2,871

    I would just like to point out the first reply to this post which seems to have been completely ignored.
  12. Elcarion

    Elcarion TechSpot Paladin Posts: 188

  13. young&wild

    young&wild TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,268

    Soul Harvester and Phantasm have some good points..you might want to consider tweaking your pc components. Upgrading your hardware might not help, but playing around with the software configurations might be better(you'll save lots of $$$). Defrag you HD and run scandisk to check for HD errors regularly.
     
  14. Justin

    Justin Newcomer, in training Posts: 1,595

    Man, I still use a 233mhz PMMX daily.

    People are too damned spoiled.

    My server runs off dual pentium MMX (233mhz each), I do all my net things (like IRC, AIM, email, etc) and watch movies on a dual celeron (400s oc'ed to 560mhz each), my FASTEST machine currently is an overclocked pentium 3 @ 1,100mhz (I can reach 1200mhz but my AGP card flakes out as the board is a BH6 and does not support 3/4 AGP).

    I have a 1.4ghz Tbird with the AYHJA stepping (very good for oc'ing, rare stepping), but it isn't built because I don't need that fast of a machine - There is absolutely nothing I need to do that requires that kind of horsepower.

    My gateway machine is a 486! Pheerage, right?


    Bleh. People are too spoiled, I say!


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