[COLOR=black]Heres my issue: I have a nearly two year old Dell that has done everything I could have ever wanted, until new games like Oblivion showed up. I can run oblivion at a reasonable 15-30 fps but in major fights, etc. my fps can drop to near 5. Here are my specs:[/COLOR] [COLOR=black]System Info[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Model : Dell Dimension XPS 400/9150 Chassis Type : Tower Service Tag : 3P63191 Operating System : Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition Professional Service Pack 2 (Build 2600) [/COLOR][COLOR=black]Processor[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Number Of Processors : 1 Hyper-Threading Enabled Type : Intel Pentium D 820 2800 MHz (2.8 Ghz) [/COLOR][COLOR=black]Processors Bus Speed :[/COLOR][COLOR=black] 800 MHz [/COLOR][COLOR=black]Motherboard[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Manufacturer : Dell Inc. Model : 0YC523 Rev. Not Available [/COLOR][COLOR=black]CPU Slot/Socket Type :[/COLOR][COLOR=black] Socket 775 LGA Chipset Vendor : Intel i945P/PL/G/GZ Rev. 00 Bios Manufacturer : Dell Inc. Bios Version : A07 [/COLOR][COLOR=black]Graphics[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Model : nVidia PCIE NVIDIA GeForce 6800 256 MB @ 325Mhz PCIE Speed : 16x Monitor : Plug and Play Monitor [/COLOR][COLOR=black]Storage[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Hard Drive 1 : Maxtor 7 L250S0 Size : 238.42 GB [/COLOR][COLOR=black]Memory[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Total RAM Installed : 2048 MB @ 667 Mhz[/COLOR] Type : DDR2 Regular UDIMM PC4300 Used RAM Slots: 4 of 4 [COLOR=black]I have several questions about how I might upgrade? [/COLOR] For starters, what is more important to upgrade CPU or GPU? [COLOR=black]If I upgrade my CPU what would i be able to upgrade to WITHOUT buying a new mobo? Would upgrading to a better Pentium D be worth it? For example: Pentium D 945 @ 3.4 Ghz or Pentium D 960 @ 3.6 Ghz and if I upgraded to one of these would I need more cooling or a bigger PSU? [/COLOR] If I upgrade my GPU I want a card that will last for awhile (ex. 8800 GTS) Is it necessary that I upgrade my GPU at this time? Will my current GPU work for a larger monitor? (see below) Also, if I upgrade my GPU will I need a better PSU? I want to get a new moniter (20" widescreen to 24" widescreen range) Do I need to upgrade specific hardware to use it for gaming? I hope that someone can help me decide what to do. I dont want to buy a new computer for awhile. If you can answer any of my questions please do.
I would say the GPU needs an upgrade most. And if you do plan on getting a new CPU. Your socket is LGA775 which is a good thing, dont upgrade to another Pentium D. Go for a Core 2 Duo. They are incredibly better. But I would definitley go for a 8800GTS first. And what is your PSU? You didnt list it. As for the bigger moniter you wont have to upgrade any components.
Hmm... I was under the impression that I could use a Core 2 Duo... but im not sure what brand my PSU is but i kno its 375 W. Would that work with my system if i got the Core 2 Duo and the 8800?
I was looking on another website and found this: "However, from wikipedia, it seems that Core 2 Duo needs the motherboard to have Voltage-Regulator-Down feature, as well as new BIOS. I wonder if Dell XPS 400 has VRD built in, or C2D compatible BIOS."
If your PSU is only 375W you'll definitley need to bump it up to atleast 500W+ for Core 2 Duo + 8800GTS
I am wondering if my mobo is Core 2 Duo compatible since i am considering an upgrade from my Pentium D 820 @ 2.8Ghz. I have a two year old Dell XPS 400. I know that my chipset is compatible (775 LGA) but I have run into some issues concerning wheter or not my BIOS is compatible and if I have VRD (voltage Regular down). How can I find out if i have VRD and a compatible BIOS?
[COLOR=black]Motherboard[/COLOR][COLOR=black]Manufacturer : Dell Inc. Model : 0YC523 Rev. Not Available [/COLOR][COLOR=black]CPU Slot/Socket Type :[/COLOR][COLOR=black] Socket 775 LGA Chipset Vendor : Intel i945P/PL/G/GZ Rev. 00 Bios Manufacturer : Dell Inc. Bios Version : A07[/COLOR]
Cheeseking25I am wondering if my mobo is Core 2 Duo compatible since i am considering an upgrade from my Pentium D 820 @ 2.8Ghz.
No, I don't believe it is. IIRC you need a 965 or better chipset for Core 2 support.
You would be best looking for a higher end Pentium D, and upgrading to something like a Geforce 8600-8800/ATI 2900. Or a ATI X1950 if you don't plan on moving to Vista anytime soon.
Personally i would worry about your CPU last, its not the fastest thing around, but its still fairly capable.