Upgrading my Dell XPS 410 CPU

By icedmetal57 ยท 11 replies
Jun 1, 2010
  1. So I've had a Dell XPS 410 computer for a little over 3 years now and I have not upgraded the CPU for it yet and was wondering if the Intel Core 2 Duo E8500 Wolfdale 3.16GHz would work with it. Right now I've got an Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 at 2.13GHz so I know this increase would be worth it. Also I can't afford a whole new machine so I'm not looking into that. I'm just wondering if that upgrade would work. Also I know they share the same socket type, but I don't know what else has to be taken into consideration. I don't really know much about processors so that's why I'm asking.

    Oh also I found a combo on Newegg where they were selling the E8500 with a Heatsink/Fan for like an extra $15 or so and my current one is whatever the default was that came with the computer 3 years ago.
  2. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Officially, I don't think the 45nm CPUs are supported on the Intel P965 chipset that ships with the Dell XPS 410.

    Look around a little on the Dell forums. The highest you can probably go is a QX6800.
  3. icedmetal57

    icedmetal57 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well, I'm getting mixed results. You say that it isn't compatible, and after doing some research others are saying it doesn't as well, but then I'm also find a lot that say it does, even though it's a P965 chipset, so I really don't know. As for the X6800, that's a bit too expensive for me, I'm looking for something in the $200 range. From what I understand, the Q6700 is compatible, though I don't know if that's true, and that it's even better than the E8500.
  4. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    Yeah it is, maybe not better.

    Well it *may* just be a hassle with bios updates and other stuffs.
    Or it might not boot.
  5. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,971   +2,527

    The question of whether the C2D is better (or worse) than the quad core, is pretty much program dependent. I don't think it would be worth it to upgrade to the E8500. The E8400 will easily clock to the speed of the E8500, and that difference would probably only be noticeable in benchmark testing, not so much in real world.

    The moral of the story is, that unless you have programs that can utilize a 4 core CPU, (mostly video encoding and real time rendering), save your money, the E8400 is about as good as it gets in your board.

    Actually, an overclocked Core i3-530 will probably blow off either of those C2Ds mentioned, at about a hundred bucks. But yeah, we;re talking about a whole new machine.

    At the point ion time your machine is at, the best money you could spend would be a video card upgrade, and this assumes you're interested in heavy gaming.
  6. Ritwik7

    Ritwik7 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,672   +9

    Some manufacturers (like Gigabyte, ASUS and MSI) released BIOS updates for their P965 board in order to support the 45nm CPUs. However, I don't know if the one in your Dell will. You may ask Dell Customer Care.
  7. icedmetal57

    icedmetal57 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Yeah I found on the Dell forums some other users had mentioned that there was a BIOS update to support it and have said they used that processor, so I'm going to take their word for it. But yeah, I found on the Intel website that it is usable on a P965 chipset.
  8. slh28

    slh28 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,706   +172

    If I'm honest I don't think you should waste your money an E8500. You won't notice that much difference from your current processor and the fact is an E8500 is the same price as an i5 750 which is miles better. Of course with the i5 you need to get a new motherboard and RAM but I think it's worth saving up for in the long run.
  9. icedmetal57

    icedmetal57 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Well I'm going with a Q6700. From the benchmark tests I saw that it had significant improvement to what I currently have, also from others around the internet have made claims that it's a nice improvement.

    captaincranky - Yes I am gamer, though I'm not as hardcorde of a gamer as many others out there. Considering the first thing I upgraded was my video card, it'll be my next thing, because I've already upgraded a few other major aspects of my computer, so I have kind of reached full circle now minus the motherboard, though I'd rather just get a new machine rather than replace the motherboard, I'll hold off on getting a new machine for a while though. And since I'll be getting this new processor I'll just keep it for my next computer as a starting point.

    So for now I'll be getting a Q6700 instead of an E8500, because like most of you said, it's not compatible, though the Q6700 is and it's supposedly better according to benchmarks and about the same price too, maybe slightly more by say $10-15.
  10. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,971   +2,527

    My only question is this, "are the better benchmarks produced by the quad core CPU, in areas that will affect your machines real world performance in the work, (or play), you require it to do"?

    Synthetic benchmarking tends to be laborious and an certain areas, inconclusive. Whereas, a couple hundred bucks is something you can see, feel, touch, and heal yourself with. (OK yeah, I stole that from "Tommy", but in my own defense it's heavily paraphrased).
  11. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,448   +145

    I like the e8400 better but if you really want.
  12. jujdred

    jujdred TS Rookie

    Not sure if you managed to pull it off or not, but I just spent the last 2 days with Dell chat support trying to do the same thing and Dell does pretty much customize each boards BIOS to the parts they send you. Supposedly some of the newer systems are going to be different in that overclocking and upgrades will be doable but not the older stuff.
    I have an XPS 410 with the OLD Core 2 Duo Lonsdale E6300 1.86ghz 64nm cpu with the 965express chipset.
    Support initially told me that the cpu support could support a Q6600 but NOT an E8400. However when we tried fitting the Q6600 into the board a message appeared at POST screen clearly stating that the board does not support Quad cores. The agent pointed me to update section and gave me a BIOS revision DXP061-020503 that should make it work but up to me to find a cpu like the older E6300 it came with to boot into windows so I could flash BIOS from there. I guess Dell's flash is customized to only work that way but I'm researching that now since almost every other maker of all my boards advise the opposite, but you know Dell.
    And as far as what offers better performance between Q6600 and E8400, it depends on user options. Obviously the quad core is going to be better at extreme multi tasking just by virtue of being a quad. But for stuff like gaming where most background tasks are or should be shut down for optimal performance anyway then the dual core would likely really shine since it is able to be overclocked to faster clocks and the 45nm tech supports newer and better instruction sets as well as being stock 1333 fsb while the quad is 1066 anyway. There are also few if any games that would offer any benefit to using a quad core that I can think of. Out of all games in my collection I think the only one that even utilizes quad cores is Lost Planet. And to really break it down, quad cores are pretty useless anyway unless you are doing graphic rendering or any Photoshop projects.
    I have both E8400 and Q6600 systems and I use each for special uses.
    My e8400 is my main system since my Crucial Ballistix and MSI P45 Diamond like the 1333 fsb anyway so they work together much more smoothly.
    And my media rig is using the Q6600 and it runs perfectly when watching movies and streaming music/videos on my LAN to 3 different computers at the same time all over the house while also sharing media online with friends across the country. When I tried that with the dual core it wasn't pretty but the quad was made for that.
    And for kicks I even use an older AMD Athlon 64 4000+ single core for my network storage and it's pretty flawless.
    Hope this helps a little. Just my own personal experience.
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