In need of a serious upgrade, is this one good? 9 replies

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The Red Barron

{TDB} Tek Jansen

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8th July 2004

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#1 12 years ago

My current computer just isn't up to snuff with the modern world, and this paired with my horrible wireless net (hate it) gives me a horrible playing experience in multiplayer (frequent disconnects, etc). Many of my older games that I used to enjoy, I have done to death, and my current 5200 FX can't handle much of anything. I can play Forgotten Hope (thank the lord) and somehow I've managed to pull of BF2 with insane graphical lag on all low settings (combined with frequent disconnects makes it very frustrating to play anything online). I know I will not be able to play FH2 with my current rig, and I really want to play HL2, Doom 3, Quake 4, Civ 4, etc, and play BF2 with better performance.

Anyhow, I was planning on spending round about $1,000 for a new rig and stumbled across the April 2006 issue of Maximum PC. They have a $1,000 dollar budget rig that they claim can handle any current game with ease, and will play the next gen ones decently enough.

Their design is as follows:

AMD Athlon 3700+ 1 GB Corsair PC3200 nVidia Geforce 7600 GT Western Digital Caviar SE 16 250GB Asus A8N-SLI Deluxe BenQ DW1655 w/Lightscribe Antec TruePower 2.0 550W Kingwin SK-523BKW for the case

Their price is 975, which seems accurate enough. I noticed that it could use a small upgrade, as I have a little more than $1,000 I could spend on it. First off, It would benefit from 2 GB of RAM instead of 1, thats cheap enough. Secondly, in the $200 price range for video cards of their August issue, they state that the X1800 GTO was slightly better than the default 7600 GT for little extra price.

A card in the $300-350 range is still affordable in my book, and they said that both the 7800 GTX and X1900 GT are well balanced. Which would you folks prefer? For the CPU, they said if they weren't designing this on a budget, they would have gone with the X2 3800 for only 70 dollars more on average than the default CPU. This seems reasonable and again, with a little extra money I could afford that.

Not knowing much about hardware, if I were to upgrade it in the ways I have listed, would I need a larger power supply, and if I did, what should I go with? Thank you for your time, any help would be greatly appreciated, I have to get rid of my current rig.




Aliblista(UK)

Wayne brady bitches!

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18th March 2005

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#2 12 years ago

all sounds good, and with those upgrades you said you could afford (2gb RAM etc) that rig should be able to handle any modern games on full graphics etc. Just make sure you have a good enough PSU and some decent cooling aswell.

Also whats the speed of the hard disk? If you can afford a faster one it would help game load times. If its a fast one already tho it doesnt matter to much.




marvinmatthew

Tech is where you'll find me..

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13th April 2005

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#3 12 years ago

Also, what are the specs on your monitor? Would it be up to the task of displaying the full graphical gloary of your new rig?




The Red Barron

{TDB} Tek Jansen

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8th July 2004

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#4 12 years ago
marvinmatthewAlso, what are the specs on your monitor? Would it be up to the task of displaying the full graphical gloary of your new rig?

Haha, no my monitor is quite old, I was thinking of getting a 19 inch LCD, though they are a little on the expensive side. If anyone could refer to a cheaper monitor it would also be appreciated.

The speed is 7,200 rpm, I'm assuming thats standard? I know some are 10,000rpm but have a much smaller capacity.




Oblivious

I tawt I taw a puddy tat...

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30th December 2002

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#5 12 years ago

I would definately go with 2gb of ram. For the processor, if your main task is gaming, you may want to stick with the 3700+ as the 3800+ will give you slightly lower performance for any game that isn't dual core optimized (which most games currently aren't). But for future proofing, I'd go with a dual core cpu. On the video card front, I'd look at the 7900gt and the x1800xt for your $300 price range. The x1800xt is a much better card than it's gto counterpart.

Some possibilities to consider:

Relatively cheap, but good 19" LCD's:

ViewSonic VA902b Black 19" 8ms LCD Monitor ($213)

ViewSonic VA1912wb Black 19" DVI 8ms Widescreen LCD Monitor ($210)

Video Card:

SAPPHIRE - ATI Radeon X1800XT 256MB ($260) If you can find it, go with the 512mb version of this card. It's only about $50 more.

eVGA - Nvidia Geforce 7900GT KO 256MB ($274)




[TtgD] Lewis

I want to be like Revenge

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1st January 2006

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#6 12 years ago

Right my system is sort of like that and 2GB is a must best upgrade ive ever done

^Viewsonic widescreen-great bit of kit only 60hz refresh and needs some setting up for a good picture

also to hard drives the 10000rpm ones are more than likely raptors and are good but at the end of the day there sligtly overkill to the over parts of your system just make sure you get a sata hard drive not ide




Homer Gonerson

...

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22nd December 2003

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#7 12 years ago
The Red BarronThe speed is 7,200 rpm, I'm assuming thats standard? I know some are 10,000rpm but have a much smaller capacity.

Yes, that is what almost all desktop hard drives run at. There are some 10,000 and even a few 15,000 rpm drives, but as you stated, much smaller capacity, for one helluva price. I'd say what you have is fine, as it will mainly only effect the loading times of maps and such, not so much in-game gameplay. I'm running a 300 gb SATA drive just fine (7,200 rpm, of course) and I play BF2, HL2, CS:S, DOD:S CoD2, all on max graphics. My specs: Athlon 64 3500+ Radeon x850XT 2 gb kingston RAM This machine you're thinking about will be awesome, and play new games great. The 2 gigs makes a world of a difference, so I'd say go for it. I don't know much about video cards though.




The Red Barron

{TDB} Tek Jansen

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8th July 2004

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#8 12 years ago
Homer GonersonYes, that is what almost all desktop hard drives run at. There are some 10,000 and even a few 15,000 rpm drives, but as you stated, much smaller capacity, for one helluva price. I'd say what you have is fine, as it will mainly only effect the loading times of maps and such, not so much in-game gameplay. I'm running a 300 gb SATA drive just fine (7,200 rpm, of course) and I play BF2, HL2, CS:S, DOD:S CoD2, all on max graphics. My specs: Athlon 64 3500+ Radeon x850XT 2 gb kingston RAM This machine you're thinking about will be awesome, and play new games great. The 2 gigs makes a world of a difference, so I'd say go for it. I don't know much about video cards though.

The 7600GT is competition for later Radeon cards than the 850, so it seems to be good enough to run the games I'd like on max settings, something i've never been able to do. I'm wondering if a sligthly more expensive one would be a good tradeoff though, it would play the current stuff fine but future games might need a better card. Hmm, decisions decisions, thank you for your help people, more is appreciated. :)




marvinmatthew

Tech is where you'll find me..

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#9 12 years ago

Well, I'm assuming that the 7600 has 256megs of video ram...

With that being said, a 7800 probably wouldn't cost your all that much more, and I'd guess that you'd see anywhere from 10-40% increase in performance (depending on what variation of the 7800 you get).

There's really no good answer in this situation. It's a case of money vs. performance. Well give you a lot of information (probably not anything you don't already know), but the bottom line is that it's all up to you.




Guest

I didn't make it!

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#10 12 years ago

i CAN BUILD YOU A KILLER TOWER , +/- $us2k aBSO TOP OF LINE AMD64DUAL BASED

tower only !!! the rest is up to u but I can birddog right direction for monitor :) (viewsonic LCD :)) we have them $249 US.