TechSpot

upgrade (need ur help)

By flavin
Jan 12, 2006
  1. !UPDATED! sry. okthen so i have just under 1000 (700 + payday the 18th 200+ more) dollars for a comp upgrade the things i need to upgrade are ...

    1. CPU
    2. MOBO (w/ good integrated sound that will last)
    3. RAM (can some1 explain timings to me please?)
    4. VID CARD
    5. PSU
    6. CASE

    for under 700 (will update again after payday. every other wenesday.)

    SOOO everything but a mouse, keyboard, monitor (upgrade later), hard drive, and cd drive.

    i was thinking of a
    1. amd 3500+ venice (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16819103533&ATT=Processors&CMP=OTC-pr1c3grabb3r)
    2. mobo = ???
    3. ram = ??? (originally thinking corsair xms w/ 2-3-3-6 for 120. now lookin at ocz titanium w/ 2-3-2-5 for 135)
    4. vid card = (??? dont know if i want to go 7 series yet cause ive heard new nvidia card comming out in march????)
    5/6. PSU & CASE = ???

    im sorry this is very half baked. to let u know this is for gaming. COD2 mostly. ut2007 in future. PLEASE. PLEASE HELP ME. all suggestions appreciated
     
  2. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    3500 Venice is nice. Corsair XMS are nice, good choices. Spend more on CPU should the buget allow, after other parts.

    Plan to spend about $400 on a great video card. But not sure you can get a SLI mobo for $100, that may cut your video budget down.
    For video, look into the ATI Radeon x850xt pe for not quite the very latest out card. Or the various specialty Nvidia cards for the SLI usage later on.

    Don't overlook your power supply either, if you plan on going SLI, you need a SLI-ready power supply. And even just to run this chunky hardware, you aught to have a ~500w decent power supply.

    Other than that, stick to Newegg, go for ASUS, MSI on the motherboard and video, and Corsair is good to stay with.

    happy hunting!
     
  3. iNoob

    iNoob TS Rookie Posts: 68

    I agree with Vigilante for everything except for one thing. You don't really need 2GB of ram for gaming. THG has an article on how much ram you really need.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/2005/12/13/how_much_ram_do_you_really_need/

    if you don't want to read it all, here is the conclusion:
    -=-=-
    1 GB

    Indeed, 1 GB of system memory will most likely be enough for the average user and for people.

    * It will allow you to play new games at their highest quality settings, given that you have an adequate processor and a powerful graphics solution.
    * You won't have to shut down non-critical applications when you want to play a game.
    * You can (accidentally) press the Windows button while in a game without dying from a stroke during the seconds it takes to read Windows back into system memory from the swap file.
    * If you go from 512 MB to 1 GB, you will notice the difference all the time. Starting up Photoshop while working with Word, an Internet browser, e-mail client and Acrobat Reader will go so much faster, and switching between the applications is a breeze.

    2 GB

    Still there are situations where more than 1 GB is what you want.

    * If you are a professional user, you might need more than 1 GB for really heavy applications.
    * If you intend to do heavy multitasking, especially if you have more than one CPU or CPU core. Running RAM intensive games such as World of Warcraft, downloading files via high speed FTP or encrypted protocols, Bittorrent or any P2P program; decompressing large archives and playing large size video files in a window or on second monitor all at the same time can max out your system memory pretty fast - if your CPU can handle it.
    -=-=-

    So unless you really want to get the 2GB so you don't have to get more when newer games come out, I say you get 1GB and spend the money on the other components :)
     
  4. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    The RAM question is tricky, good points. But I offer a few more nuggets of my wisdom, lol, what's left of it.

    If you have a dual channel motherboard, which most are these days, it is GOOD to configure your RAM as such. For example if you have 4 slots, you may want 2 512s in dual channel mode. But adding a 3rd 512 for 1.5g would not be a better idea, in my thinking.
    However, if you really think you need more then 1gb, then having 2 1gb sticks in dual channel is the way to go. Or 4 512mb.

    Note that on the latest games, 1gb is the recommended. Like Battlefield2 and new Half Life stuff. So it won't be long before a game can chew 1gb up. This is an obvious fact, games just keep getting larger. Even 10 years ago a game could fit in under 1mb, lol. And before that it had to run in the 40kb address space or whatever? Oh the old simplistic days of DOS gaming. How I miss thee loader larry!
     
  5. flavin

    flavin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 91

    OK so i have decided to wait 1 month to make more money (4 weeks = 2 paychecks, feb 1st bday, and passing all my classes in school i hope) and to wait for the next line of nvidia and ati cards to come out to see which one gets better performance.

    How much do u think one of the new cards will cost from either of the companys?
    Also this might sound stupid but i just want to make sure. if u want to run 2 cards in SLI or Crossfire u need a SLI board for Nvidia and a CF board for ATI right?

    thank you and goodnight techspot and vigilante
     
  6. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    The brand new video cards that just hit shelves are usually around ~$500us. If you drop back to the previous model, it's more like ~$400. If you buy two for SLI, of course just geting the two video cards would be your entire budget!

    If you really want SLI, get the motherboard with SLI dual 16x PCI-E and one video card. Buy the second one later.
    And yes, if you use SLI with nVidia, you need nVidia cards. If you want the new ATI Crossfire setup, you use their cards and mobo chipset. It's like this:

    For SLI and nVidia, get:
    ) nForce4 chipset mobo and dual 16x PCI-E
    ) Two identicle video cards
    ) Proper drivers to enable the performace boost in "some" games

    For Crossfire, get:
    ) A mobo with Radeon Xpress 200 CrossFire edition chipset
    ) A "CrossFire master card" for either the X800 or X850 series of video cards
    ) A regular X800 or X850 card to match the master card
    ) Enable Crossfire in driver control panel. You MUST have "Catalyst A.I" enabled first

    Note that for Crossfire, you do NOT buy two identicle cards. It is a master card and a regular card.

    Info taken from this site:
    http://www.hardocp.com/article.html?art=ODE1

    There are some myths and possible truths surrounding both SLI and CF. SLI has a more stringent driver setup to even GET the performance gain. Whereas CF supposedly gives you ALL gain in performace no matter what, and is compatible with all games. And SLI is not compatible with all games.
    But then, the Express 200 chipset hasn't been around as long as the tried and true, stable and fast nForce 4 chipset.
    CF may be cheaper, due to not needing two identicle video cards.
    CF is newer, and thus ATI was able to create it in such a way as to beat SLI in performance, which ATI claims it does for many games. But you can't really trust the info coming strait from them, look for 3rd part benchmarks like Tomshardware.

    It is a hard choice really. They say it is cheaper and faster to get SLI 6600gts, then a single 6800Ultra. So SLI would be better there. But the idea of CF is that, if you ALREADY have an X800 or X850 card, then all you need is the mobo and master card. Buying it all fromt scratch may or may not be any better then buying SLI from scratch.
    Though it is nice not having to buy identicle cards for CF. That doesn't matter because if you ever upgraded, you'd have to replace both cards anyway for either setup.

    If it were me, I would attempt CF, just because I happen to like ATI better. But that is personal bias. If you have $1000+ budget for video, perhaps get SLI with dual 6800Ultras or something.
    If your budget is not that high, then maybe the ATI is cheaper if you just get like a X850xt pe, which is still a fast card, but would be in the $300s rather then $400s or 5.

    That is enough from me! Let others share their thoughts on the subject now.
     
  7. flavin

    flavin TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 91

    well as of right now im completly undecided on what video card and mobo (actually i dont really now any of the peices im going to buy)

    all i now is that im gonna have 1000+ and i want it to be an AMD system, with the newest ATI or nvidia card. that come in a month. im really lookin for suggestion on high quality parts. and remember that card is gonna take a big chunk outta my budget. so i need some great parts for midrange price

    ps. i need everything but harddrive, cd drive & monitor
     
  8. LipsOfVenom

    LipsOfVenom TS Rookie Posts: 160

    midrange video is GeForce 6800GS, they can be SLi'd, Nvidia has said that they will discontinue the other 6800's except for the GT and the GS in the near future. Ati equivalent is the X800 GTO or..X850, they can be crossfired.
    All those cards are about $220 the 850 is $250. You can buy a 7800 at newegg for $300 though so it's up to you.

    Famous AMD motherboards are the Asus line of A8n SLI and the DFI lan party boards. Those run socket 939 at the high end of $190 or so.
     
  9. kaymastah

    kaymastah TS Rookie Posts: 43

    Get a good mobo and CPU, other stuff matters less. To me, it's especially video card. Suggestions?

    - a dual core Athlon 64 2.2 GHz - it rocks!
    - a good mobo for it, I got to like ASRock sometime ago (a cheaper and more tolerant version of ASUS)
    - make sure the mobo is expandable (a PCI express slot is a must)
    - Corsair ram is a good choice (pricewatch will find you best prices, newegg though is the uber-reliable seller)
    - HDD? get a seagate or western digital.

    You should be able to afford that if you cut down on video. On most games you can still get decent frame rates with mid range GeForces. I would not spend on video card more than $120, $160 max. The prices go down a lot within a few months and it's just not worth it IMHO.
     
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