Feeling the Need to Upgrade

By BLM73 ยท 8 replies
Apr 8, 2010
  1. Hi Techspot Friends,

    I'm learning more everyday about the more technical side of computers, and could use some advice on upgrading my current, and somewhat outdated, system.

    CPU Type AMD Athlon 64, 1800 MHz (9 x 200) 3000+
    Motherboard Name Unknown
    Motherboard Chipset ATI Radeon Xpress 200, AMD Hammer
    System Memory 2048 MB (DDR SDRAM)

    Video Adapter Radeon X1600/1650 Series Secondary(256 MB)
    Video Adapter Radeon X1600/X1650 Series(256 MB)
    3D Accelerator ATI RV530 Pro

    Hard Drive:
    Drive #1 - WDC WD25 00JS-00NCB1 SCSI Disk Device (232 GB) SATA

    Basically, I'm of the opinion that the current Socket 939 is limiting my ability to move into Dual Core Processors, and that upgrade would require me to buy a new MoBo. If I'm wrong about that I guess that simplifys things, but as of now I'm thinking I need a new MoBo and CPU, and as long as I'm replacing those two things I might as well upgrade the Graphics Card, and Hard drive too.

    I use this computer for jsut about everything; Work, Music Production, Graphic Design, and Gaming. Any help is greatly appreciated.
  2. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164


    can you list the specs and model of your motherboard? many 939 mb's can accept a dual core 64 x2 CPU with a bios update. also your budget for upgrading.
  3. BLM73

    BLM73 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Sorry, thought I posted enough info, looking back at it, yeah I didn't lol.

    ASUS Vintage-AH1 AMD Athlon 64 FX / Athlon 64 / Sempron AMD Socket 939 ATI XPRESS 200 ATI Radeon Xpress 300 Barebone
    Motherboard : ASUS A8R-MX-Vintage
    Chipset : ATI RADEON Xpress 200 (RS482) + ULi M1573
    BIOS Date, and Version : 10/25/05 - 0303

    Budget I'm not overly concerned with, but knowing I could build a new system for less than $700 I'd like to stay below $300. Whether that be by Upgrading what I originally was thinking, buying a Micro ATX MoBo/CPU bundle, or following a Suggestion.

    Ok, so I know I came on here asking for advice, but I'm new to Building/Upgrading computers and am kinda excited about it, so I did some research. Now I'm thinking:

    CPU : Athlon 64 X2 3800+
    Graphics : Sapphire Radeon HD 100264HDMI 4350 512MB DDR2 HDMI / DVI / VGA PCI-Express Graphics Card

    This combo allows me to keep my current MoBo, which would allow me to buy a 1TB HD surely, but I still don't know if I'm making the best decisions, so again, any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Oh yeah, and in case the Dino Monitor could be a problem with the new or recommended set-up :

    Monitor Name: ViewSonic Q9-2

    Thank you for your time and consideration.
  4. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    it appears that your MB will support the 64 X2 CPU's, however i am really not having any success
    finding it on Asus's home page for the bios update. Is this an OEM machine? or did you build it?


    a cursory look seems to have the x2 3800's at about $70.00 to purchase. you mentioned $300.00 as an upgrade budget. imo upgrading your current system is not the most cost effective route. This is a $290.00 upgrade and will run rings around what you have now.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103724 75.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813128376 75.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148206 60.00
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102824&cm_re=hd_4850-_-14-102-824-_-Product 80.00

    you could get this even lower if you get a $50.00 mb and and a lesser graphics card, however this mb has ACC and you may be able to unlock the 4th core :)
  5. BLM73

    BLM73 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your reply.

    It's a Machine I built back in '06, and I'm feeling it's getting a little behind the times. It's starting to lag in games it never used to before, it makes a weird humming sound that gets louder when you touch the outside of the Tower, freezes up now and then, and the current Graphics card doesn't support two Monitors.

    I know I just listed a bunch of different problems, and I'm certainly not expecting a couple upgrades to fix them all, but one at a time, singling out a component here and there I'd be happy with.

    It's hard to find information on that MoBo for some reason, though the one you linked is the correct one, so it's been a chore to determine what if any Dual Core Processor I can put in the thing.

    Go figure, found a webpage I'd not seen before when trying determine the Power Supply spec's of all things lol.


    maybe that will help you help me, dunno really.

    ** HTTP changed in above address b/c my Post count doesn't allow me to post Links yet** :(
  6. BLM73

    BLM73 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I can do that 4 part upgrade you linked actually, provided my current power supply can handle it, and the ATX MoBo in that build will fit in my Micro ATX Tower. At least I think I read them both correctly.
  7. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    yup, that's where I landed for the bios as well. now look up your bios revision and see if that's the version you have or if you have to flash your bios.
    I would really consider my suggestion, the reason being that 939 is dead and no longer supported. your upgrade choices will dwindle and it will be difficult for your machine to keep up with new programs,games, etc. The AM3 upgrade will afford you a long term upgrade paths, whereas once you purchase say the x2 3800, your stuck with it and the 939 socket. I build computers for a living and most everyone that I have worked with has regretted spending $$ on a platform with no upgrade future. ok, enough of my 2 cents worth. :) check your bios version and see if you already have the version that supports the 64 x2's

    ******** EDIT*******if your PSU is insufficient for the 4850, this one will operate with the 75w afforded by the PCIE slot
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102854&cm_re=hd_4670-_-14-102-854-_-Product *********
  8. BLM73

    BLM73 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks a lot Red1776, I think I will simply follow your advice and rework the system with the components you've listed.

    It looks to me like my current PSU at 300w is a little low for the new hardware, if that's the case then throw in a new Tower/PSU combo around 500w and I'm still in the ballpark of $300.

    If I'm wrong please let me know, but as it stands I'm pretty sure that's the best way to go, and I can avoid all potential ATX in a Micro ATX case problems at the same time.
  9. red1776

    red1776 Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe Posts: 5,224   +164

    Glad I could help :), I think you will be pleased with the performance you will get from that combo. the 4850 calls for 450w PSU, however what you are really looking for is a quality PSU with 26A+ on the 12v rail. This one is 35.00 after rebate and is very high quality.
    here's one of the many favorable reviews.

    I know your on budget, however,I fell I would be remiss if I didn't let you know that for about you could get into an AM3/DDR3 system for about $30 more, just FYI.
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