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Upgrading my PC for better gaming

By Darkeerantis
Dec 8, 2014
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  1. Hello

    I'm really new to the tech/computer world, and know next to nothing about graphics cards. I was wondering if someone could help me figure out what graphics card I can upgrade my computer to. I have purchased the new Alien: Isolation game and would actually like to play it, I'm also ready to actually play a game smoothly without it freezing or lagging all the time.

    Here's what computer I have so far as I know

    HP-Pavilion

    System Model: VD010AA-ABU p6126uk
    Operating System: Windows Vista Home Premium (6.0, Build 6002)
    Processor: AMD Phenom 9650 Quad-Core Processor (4 CPUs), ~2.3GHz
    Memory: 4094 MB Ram
    Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 4300/4500 Series
    Chip Type: ATI display adaptor (0x954F)

    now I know NOTHING about computers so apologies if the is any irrelevant info here or maybe even some missing please let me know

    Thanks
     
  2. Filip B

    Filip B TS Enthusiast Posts: 46   +9

    Hey Darkeerantis what is your PSU (name and type or at least wattage). What is your MB (again name and type). How much free room you have in your case. What is your budget and desired performance.

    Btw. your CPU isn't very powerful and the whole setup seems dated you might consider upgrading the whole rig.
     
  3. ETF Soldier

    ETF Soldier TS Guru Posts: 377   +81

    The most important things you need to upgrade here are the graphics card and CPU, to avoid costs you could probably get an old Nvidia Geforce 550/ 550 Ti/ 630/ basically anything more capable than that should be playable, if you want smooth 1080p ultra setting you'll need nothing less than a 760. In terms of the processor, so you don't have to upgrade the MOBO, stick to AMD and a processor that uses the same socket which is difficult as it's AM2+. Some AM3 CPUs have been known to work with these sockets, but if I were you I'd get a new AM3+ MOBO and get an older Phenom X6 CPU, they're cheap and they do the job fine.
    I do completely agree with Filip B though, you should definitely upgrade your entire rig soon.

    Upgrade Vista to 7/ 8.1, some people hate 8, but on later rigs DirectX11.2 is beneficial.
    That processor is VERY OLD, go for a FX4xxx/ intel i5-2xxx or later.
    4GB RAM isn't in itself that bad, but 8 would be better. The 4GB you have at the moment is DDR2 but is very slow compared to newer models, so I'd say chuck the 4GB and get a newer DDR3 stick.
    The Graphics card you have is very old too, I'd say don't go bellow Radeon 65xx or GTX 550.

    Warning: Look up the graphics card numbering systems, as a GTX 620 is not the same as a 550, nor is a Radeon 7770 better than a 6870.
     
  4. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,393   +108

    All you have to do with that system is add the additional DDR2 RAM to bring it up to 8 GB. Disable the on-board Video which at the time was really fast but it won't be able handle DirectX11. So you need to get PCI-e Card with more than 512MB that is embeded on your system now. That RAM can be switched in the BIOS from 64MB, 128MB and 512MB.

    I have 3x towers using ACER/GATEWAY DX Series which would be today FX Series since they changed the DX to FX. They had came with PH64-bit 1.9GHz but now they're all Black Edition 2.5GHz. Got a on good deal off ebay they're brand new for the BE-CPU Quads.

    ATI Radeon HD 4300/4500 Series is older you would need at least HD 6000 / HD 7000 series actually HD 7000 series is far better than the HD 6000. Get 1GB or higher in VRAM DDR3.

    CPU 2.3 GHz Quad core on a South-bridge you have is considered Black Edition type which is the 2.5GHz/2.8GHz version. Compare to my APU is slightly slower by not much though.

    Today finding replacement CPU for this model will be tough. Ebay at most. Your need silver for the with the CPU/FAN should it come with it. This option.

    • 3600MHz Hyper Transports
    • 65nm Agena 95W
    • 2MB L3 Cache
    • 4 x 512KB L2 Cache
     

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