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Advice for upgrading a 5-year old PC (£4-600, United Kingdom)

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February 11, 2014 9:00:02 AM

Hi,

This is my first post here, and I am seeking input for upgrading my existing PC. I thank you in advance for reading.

I am based in the UK. I am looking to upgrade my PC. I currently have issues with performance when running next-gen games or running multiple programs. My total budget is around £400-500, inclusive of tax but pre-shipping. I would prefer only to replace relevant parts.

System usage will be for: Internet use, playing games, streaming online, watching films.
I will not be buying a new monitor, keyboard, speakers, mouse, dvd-r, fans or OS. I may require a new case as my existing one is slightly battered in one corner so the side-board no longer fits!

Current parts of note:
PSU - Corsair CX600 - this is a more recent purchase (2-3 years old, perhaps) and I would prefer not to replace this unless necessary.
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-X48-DS5
CPU: Intel Core2 Quad CPU Q9550 2.83Ghz, not OC'd.
GPU: NIVDEA GeForce 9600GT 512mb
RAM: - XMS2 DD2 (2X2GB=4GB)

New parts I want - CPU, GPU, RAM, Motherboard (if necessary, which I assume it will be with new hardware),

PSU is a more recent purchase, I would prefer not to replace this, and would like the new system to run off a 600W PSU.

Preferred websites: Ebuyer, Scan, Amazon UK

Location: Norfolk, England.

Would like to upgrade with an NVIDEA GPU with 2gb and physx.
Overclocking - maybe
SLI/Crossfire - maybe

Please let me know if you need me to provide any other information. I'm not amazingly tech-savvy and only delve into computer's innards two or three times a decade or so.

Thanks,
Jack




February 11, 2014 9:20:43 AM

Do you prefer to OC or not?
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February 11, 2014 9:24:49 AM

It may be worth it for you to build a new PC. With a new PC, you will get Gen 3 PCI Express, USB 3.0, SATA III, and full support for the newest CPUs.
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Related resources
February 11, 2014 9:33:02 AM

This upgrade is great. I assume you have a HDD and Optical Drive already, so those are excluded.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($217.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: MSI Z77 MPOWER ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($185.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($84.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB Video Card ($259.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $848.92
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-02-11 12:32 EST-0500)

£516.41
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Best solution

February 11, 2014 9:36:03 AM

http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/2Roqz If you dont want to overclock and go over budget
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February 11, 2014 9:37:48 AM

Andrew Buck said:
This upgrade is great. I assume you have a HDD and Optical Drive already, so those are excluded.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($217.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: MSI Z77 MPOWER ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($185.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($84.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB Video Card ($259.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $848.92
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-02-11 12:32 EST-0500)

£516.41


Too bad prices are not same like US, Total: £670.64 when you change in the upper right corner to UK
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February 11, 2014 9:47:12 AM

Hi Jack,

Your situation is quite similar to mine in that you have an aging system but don't want to go all out and buy something completely new, though your budget is a little higher than mine (jealous!).

I've been given some good advice in this thread: http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/answers/id-2019699/upgrad...

So you may want to take a look there.

Also, to tcb1005 - would he really need a new PC? Just replacing the mobo would get him all those things wouldn't it? Or have I missed something?

EDIT: I mean replacing the mobo then adding new CPU, GFX & RAM.

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February 11, 2014 9:51:46 AM

RAM,CPU,MOBO,GPU and case in his situation is enough.
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February 11, 2014 10:08:50 AM

StarBG said:
Andrew Buck said:
This upgrade is great. I assume you have a HDD and Optical Drive already, so those are excluded.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($217.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: MSI Z77 MPOWER ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($185.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($84.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB Video Card ($259.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $848.92
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-02-11 12:32 EST-0500)

£516.41


Too bad prices are not same like US, Total: £670.64 when you change in the upper right corner to UK


You can buy it from a US location and just convert the currency. It shouldn't cost too much.
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February 11, 2014 10:09:46 AM

lovedbyleopards said:
Hi Jack,

Your situation is quite similar to mine in that you have an aging system but don't want to go all out and buy something completely new, though your budget is a little higher than mine (jealous!).

I've been given some good advice in this thread: http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/answers/id-2019699/upgrad...

So you may want to take a look there.

Also, to tcb1005 - would he really need a new PC? Just replacing the mobo would get him all those things wouldn't it? Or have I missed something?

EDIT: I mean replacing the mobo then adding new CPU, GFX & RAM.



You are right however, he said his case is battered and he might want to replace that, and also, since his PC is 5 years old we know that his Hard Drive disc will be near the end of it's life. Since he is going to have to replace so much already, why not just build a new PC? He could of course reuse his PSU but judging by the price of upgrading all of his parts, a new PC will not cost much more.
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February 11, 2014 12:33:45 PM

Thank you for the many replies.

Just to add, I had to replace the HDD just over one year ago, so that is also a fairly new and functional part. So the PSU and HDD are both OK, as far as I'm concerned.

I think I need to discover whether I can salvage the case or not before going any further. The corner on one side panel is bent slightly, so it no longer slots in to the grooves in the main case, thus I have to keep one side uncovered. A bash with a hammer might straighten it out again, though..

I tend -not- to overclock, it's not a process I've taken the time to understand. As long as it's an understandable process by an fairly intelligence man and does not cause too many heating issues that cannot be negated with a simple CPU fan, then I'm all game for it. So let's say "Yes" and I shall await your suggestions.

BTW - as I said, I don't frequently upgrade/build PCs - what affect would the case have on other selection of hardware, in terms of dimensions etc?

Many thanks, you're all being very helpful.
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February 11, 2014 12:43:51 PM

If you are going to over clock, I recommend you get liquid cooling. Overclocking is not too difficult, you just don't want to push your CPU too far.
This video gives you a great guide on overclocking if you choose an ASUS motherboard, which I recommend. ASUS motherboards are really easy to use for overclocking. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CHs5_TdpXE Furthermore a case will only affect what size motherboard you will fit into your system thus how many GPUs, Sound cards, Network expansion slots, etc. that you can place into your PC.
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February 11, 2014 12:57:48 PM

OK... let's say "No Overclock", and work from there? Sorry. :) 

So.. Mobo, CPU, GPU, RAM, under £500 (preferably at £400). Case is not a consideration in this equation - I will consider that an extra to the stated budget if required, but I doubt I'll need a large case (one sound card, one GPU, a couple of network slots is all that is required).

Please, I'm open to suggestions on parts.. Grats.

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February 11, 2014 1:03:47 PM

Here is what I would buy if I were you. You don't really need a sound card but if you want one, I recommend ASUS Xonar. http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/2RuYa
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February 11, 2014 1:37:31 PM

Dont need z87 mainboard for non K CPUS, and RAM voltage is a bit too high and if you want a quad core CPU with HT but for the price of an i5 then this is the answer http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/parts/partlist/
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February 11, 2014 10:08:28 PM

Andrew Buck said:
StarBG said:
Andrew Buck said:
This upgrade is great. I assume you have a HDD and Optical Drive already, so those are excluded.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($217.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: MSI Z77 MPOWER ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($185.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($84.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB Video Card ($259.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $848.92
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-02-11 12:32 EST-0500)

£516.41


Too bad prices are not same like US, Total: £670.64 when you change in the upper right corner to UK


You can buy it from a US location and just convert the currency. It shouldn't cost too much.


What about the import/shipping costs?
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February 11, 2014 10:09:44 PM

sora said:
Andrew Buck said:
StarBG said:
Andrew Buck said:
This upgrade is great. I assume you have a HDD and Optical Drive already, so those are excluded.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570K 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($217.99 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.99 @ Microcenter)
Motherboard: MSI Z77 MPOWER ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($185.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1866 Memory ($84.98 @ OutletPC)
Video Card: EVGA GeForce GTX 760 2GB Video Card ($259.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Microcenter)
Total: $848.92
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-02-11 12:32 EST-0500)

£516.41


Too bad prices are not same like US, Total: £670.64 when you change in the upper right corner to UK


You can buy it from a US location and just convert the currency. It shouldn't cost too much.


What about the import/shipping costs?


It would be about the same as the higher prices in the UK pretty much if it is the same as the other build that you said that on.
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February 12, 2014 12:51:10 AM

tcb1005 said:
Here is what I would buy if I were you. You don't really need a sound card but if you want one, I recommend ASUS Xonar. http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/2RuYa


StarBG said:
Dont need z87 mainboard for non K CPUS, and RAM voltage is a bit too high and if you want a quad core CPU with HT but for the price of an i5 then this is the answer http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/parts/partlist/


StarBG, did you intend to include a list of parts? The link goes to the main site.

What is "HT"?

Is there much difference between Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550 2.83GHz and Intel Core i5-4440 3.1GHz Quad-Core Processor, in terms of performance? I take it the 'i5' is more important than the .27GHz difference..
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February 12, 2014 1:55:29 AM

HT is a technology which let you build virtual cores. Since the CPUs are totaly different you cant compare them that way. The core i5 will blow the core 2 quad away. http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/p/2Robc pretty nice performance which can run the games on ultra and should run on lower temps and less noisy.
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February 12, 2014 5:30:49 AM

The card in there can be purchased cheaper with the offer here, http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/offer-listing/B00GI2XJM0/ref...

So price will be just under £400 I believe, nice.

Alternatively, how does this setup look:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Bulldozer-FX-6300-M5A78L-M-Moth...
http://www.amazon.co.uk/GeForce-DirectCU-Graphics-Expre...

Those two there for just under £450.

AMD 6-core vs. i5? Opinions welcome! Getting quite excited now.

I've also been advised that a SSD is a good idea. Perhaps a 120GB one to stick the OS and a couple of choice "favourite games of the season"?
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February 12, 2014 5:52:03 AM

The Xeon would be the best option, it is a core i7 and amds cpus have weak cores and most times they are stated like 2-4-6-8 cores but mostly they use also HT and have lower number of cores - modules like AMD write. I would take i5 or the Xeon which is priced at core i5 price and AMD CPUs have a very high wattage use. My last AMD CPU was Athlon XP 2000+ 1666MHz 10 years back or so :D . gtx 770 from gigabyte or asus is good. 128gb samsung pro would be nice or the 120gb samsung evo which is cheaper for OS, programs and games but it is for faster loading time and does not improve fps.
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February 12, 2014 8:06:59 AM

OK, I've ordered the RAM and Mobo I linked to in my above pcpartpicker link.

The Video Card through Amazon won't be available for up to 4 weeks, (139.99), so the £152.50 MSI Radeon R9 270X 2GB one it is. Sure it'll be fine enough for my use.
Regarding the processor - Intel it is. i5 should be sufficient, I hope? Is a Xeon of equivalent price actually superior in terms of internet use, multiple files running, and gaming? Or may I just as well go ahead and get the i5?
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February 12, 2014 8:12:29 AM

Jwaspe86 said:
OK, I've ordered the RAM and Mobo I linked to in my above pcpartpicker link.

The Video Card through Amazon won't be available for up to 4 weeks, (139.99), so the £152.50 MSI Radeon R9 270X 2GB one it is. Sure it'll be fine enough for my use.
Regarding the processor - Intel it is. i5 should be sufficient, I hope? Is a Xeon of equivalent price actually superior in terms of internet use, multiple files running, and gaming? Or may I just as well go ahead and get the i5?


The Xeon is not overclockable like the i5 and i7 K CPUs are, but honestly, the Xeon looks like a good choice too. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... is good.
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February 12, 2014 8:13:47 AM

The Xeon has HT which generates 4 virtual cores and is better for programs for rendering,encoding, graphics intensive work and multitasking and better for newer games which can use more than 4 threads but they are not that many now but they start to get more for the future. It can be overclocked only to its Turbo speed.
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February 12, 2014 8:35:55 AM

Thanks, that's everything ordered except the CPU. The Graphics Card will take 2 - 4 weeks to arrive, a couple of weekly paycheques away, so I may feel less anxious about ordering a Xeon in a week or two!

Do Xeons require a certain type of Mobo? Because if so, then the i5 it is (have just ordered a mobo)

Thank you for all the advice, I've found this very helpful.
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February 12, 2014 8:40:46 AM

Jwaspe86 said:
Thanks, that's everything ordered except the CPU. The Graphics Card will take 2 - 4 weeks to arrive, a couple of weekly paycheques away, so I may feel less anxious about ordering a Xeon in a week or two!

Do Xeons require a certain type of Mobo? Because if so, then the i5 it is (have just ordered a mobo)

Thank you for all the advice, I've found this very helpful.


The Xeon is the LGA1150 socket like the i5-4670k is.
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February 13, 2014 6:56:02 AM

Yes it will be good.
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February 13, 2014 7:28:59 AM

All ordered.

Intel Core i5-4570, ASRock H87 Pro4, 8GB DDR3-1600 and an Asus AMD Radeon R9 270, all in all for £398.78 (Got shipping free for all of them and a couple of good offers on Amazon)

Thank you everybody for your help - I consider this now solved. :) 
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February 13, 2014 8:07:18 AM

Almost exactly the same setup as I've gone for! GPUs are very slightly different though.

Good luck with it!
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February 19, 2014 8:12:47 AM

The motherboard is defective, would not recognise the RAM in two slots, so I'm getting a refund.

I am going to order a different motherboard - How does this one look, with the I5 4570 CPU and G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ?

http://uk.pcpartpicker.com/part/asus-motherboard-h87pro

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February 19, 2014 8:49:50 AM

Will work if it does not come as RMA.
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!