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New graphics card, or new processor?

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Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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May 29, 2013 1:45:36 PM

Ok so im looking to upgrade my computer, but im on a limited budget of $400 so im only planning on getting a new graphics card or a new processor so I need to know which one should be upgraded immediately any help is appreciated. (dont hate on my pc it was a pre-built from cyber power 2 years ago)

AMD Athlon(tm) II X2 270 Processor
AMD Radeon HD 6450

if theres anything else needed let me know!
May 29, 2013 1:48:53 PM

Also i play games on it, here is a little bit of the games i play/ want to play, arma 2, arma 3, warz, AC3, crysis 2, Dark souls, saints row 3. and there's quite a few others but thats a general idea of the games i play.
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May 29, 2013 1:52:41 PM

really you need both, any new graphics card you will be cpu limited and a new cpu will be gpu limeted so a total platform upgrade of motherboard processer and graphics card is the best option
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May 29, 2013 1:55:57 PM

Well. you'll need to upgrade both to play most of those games... they're pretty CPU and GPU intensive....
Can you answer the following questions:

what resolution are you gaming on?
What is your PSU? (brand and wattage)
What is your motherboard?
Are you willing to overclock?

Fortunately, your motherboard (AM3 socket) should be able to support a direct upgrade to a pretty decent the CPU.

If i were you, I would get this CPU and start from there (since your budget doesn't allow you to actually upgrade to a newer platform with better processors)
AMD Phenom II X4 965.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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May 29, 2013 1:58:05 PM

your system is old enough that it might be better to just build a new one than trying to find a faster cpu for it.
what motherboard model do you have? how much ram do you have?
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Best solution

May 29, 2013 2:02:15 PM

The Athlon 270 uses AM3 instead of the mainstream AM3+, which might lock you out of upgrading later on. Anyway, tell us what's in there. Finally, you definitely need a new PSU. All of those prebuilt gaming PC's ship with crappy barebones ones. Try to save the HDD and the case.
PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Asus M5A97 R2.0 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($84.99 @ Newegg)
Memory: Kingston Black 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($49.98 @ PCM)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 650 Ti Boost 1GB Video Card ($139.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec Basiq 430W 80 PLUS Certified ATX12V Power Supply ($43.35 @ Amazon)
Total: $398.30
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 17:01 EDT-0400)
Try to keep the optical drive too.
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May 29, 2013 2:04:43 PM

DazePhantom said:
Ok so im looking to upgrade my computer, but im on a limited budget of $400 so im only planning on getting a new graphics card or a new processor so I need to know which one should be upgraded immediately any help is appreciated. (dont hate on my pc it was a pre-built from cyber power 2 years ago)

AMD Athlon(tm) II X2 270 Processor
AMD Radeon HD 6450

if theres anything else needed let me know!


both.

here... a combo solution for you.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 3GB Video Card ($289.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $369.98
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 17:03 EDT-0400)

I don't know what mb you're running with, but an AM3 mb should support that cpu. You might need a bios update.

Take the saved cash and if you don't have a good cpu cooler get a hyper evo 212
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May 29, 2013 2:06:55 PM

what resolution are you gaming on?:1280x1024
What is your PSU? (brand and wattage): turbolink 115/230
What is your motherboard?:I have no idea it is asus on it, you would have to tell me where to look.
Are you willing to overclock?:yes
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May 29, 2013 2:13:16 PM

Branden said:
your system is old enough that it might be better to just build a new one than trying to find a faster cpu for it.
what motherboard model do you have? how much ram do you have?


8.2 GB
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May 29, 2013 2:39:10 PM

DazePhantom said:
what resolution are you gaming on?:1280x1024
What is your PSU? (brand and wattage): turbolink 115/230
What is your motherboard?:I have no idea it is asus on it, you would have to tell me where to look.
Are you willing to overclock?:yes


your psu will handle your system... and ASUS supports their motherboards with constant bios updates, so even without knowing which one you have i know it will run the PhIIx4 965be

the PhII is an AM3 chip, you have an AM3 mb... no need to waste money you could be using to get a better gpu on a new mb.

Since you are gaming at the strange res of 1280x1024, i would suggest the following upgrade (amending my previous one)... since you don't need a gpu that strong and your psu isn't that strong (500W), i backed the gpu down to one that can game good in 1080p, and gave you a better monitor.

I think this is a better fit for your needs.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($79.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 2GB Video Card ($194.99 @ Newegg)
Monitor: Asus VS247H-P 23.6" Monitor ($134.99 @ Newegg)
Total: $409.97
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-05-29 17:37 EDT-0400)
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