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Free Gaming rig to upgrade, need advice.

So I got a free Gaming PC from my neighbor that he built about 4-5 years ago. First I'll list what is has and what I've added, then what I need help with.
It has:
- ATX Mid tower case with a 550w PSU
- Gigabyte GA-P43-ES3G Motherboard
- Intel Core 2 Duo E8600 3.33GHz CPU
- Had 3gb of DDR2 PC2-6400 / I ordered 8gb(2x4gb)of PC2-6400
- Ordered a WD Blue 1TB 7400rpm HD
- Havent ordered an optical drive but thats not really a big deal.

What I'm looking for is the absolute cheapest(even if its a use/ebay) graphics card I can find. Up to maybe $100. I'm Super broke right now so I don't want to put much into it yet.

Once I get caught up a little I'm going to Build a complete new rig with the tower and PSU.

Any Suggestions would be awesome. Im hoping to be able to run BF4 on medium or better if possible.
16 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about free gaming rig upgrade advice
  1. The best you can do is amd 250x. This card will put on medium at least in almost any game.
    r7 250x:
    http://www.amazon.com/MSI-R7-250X-Graphics-1GD5/dp/B00JJNQ8S2/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1398658247&sr=8-3&keywords=amd+250x
  2. If you can spare an extra $15, you can get a better performance.
    Here's what I'm recommending for $115.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB Video Card ($114.28 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $114.28
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-28 00:20 EDT-0400)
  3. AgentTran said:
    If you can spare an extra $15, you can get a better performance.
    Here's what I'm recommending for $115.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB Video Card ($114.28 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $114.28
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-28 00:20 EDT-0400)


    Haven't gone out and researched yet, but the 7770 is an older card compared to the R7 250... Not too sure that its better...
  4. Christopher Gonzalez said:
    AgentTran said:
    If you can spare an extra $15, you can get a better performance.
    Here's what I'm recommending for $115.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 1GB Video Card ($114.28 @ SuperBiiz)
    Total: $114.28
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
    (Generated by PCPartPicker 2014-04-28 00:20 EDT-0400)


    Haven't gone out and researched yet, but the 7770 is an older card compared to the R7 250... Not too sure that its better...


    Its the same card. The specs and architecture are the exact same. I don't know why people think 7770 is better than 250x.
  5. Thanks Guys. Those are some that I have looked at so far. How about this for $100? - ASUS RADEON HD 7790 2GB
  6. 7790 is better than 7770/250x. So I would go for that.
  7. You could also take a look at some of the new GTX 750s. They're supposed to perform well and have very low power consumption. They're also right in there around $100.
  8. Just Bought it, I looked it up on gpu boss. They compared the 1gb 7790 to the 2gb R7 260x and it beat it in almost all catagories.
  9. On my next build I will probablt just get a Crossfire ready board and try and find a second one. You guys think that would work better than buying a $200 or so GPU?
  10. Sleepy3103 said:
    Just Bought it, I looked it up on gpu boss. They compared the 1gb 7790 to the 2gb R7 260x and it beat it in almost all catagories.


    No. 7790 and 260x are essentially the same card with two differences. The 260x comes with 2 gb of vram and a memory clock of 1625mhz. The cards are pretty equal.
  11. Best answer
    Sleepy3103 said:
    On my next build I will probablt just get a Crossfire ready board and try and find a second one. You guys think that would work better than buying a $200 or so GPU?


    Crossfiring or sling cards under 200 is a waste. Getting a single gpu that is worth that like 270x makes more sense.
  12. Cool Ill probable invest in a way better GPU setup when I start fresh. Thanks Guys.
  13. tea urchin said:
    It will be interesting to see if there are no compatibility issues between a p43 motherboard a a pci-e3 card.


    No. PCIE 3.0 cards are backwards compatible with PCIE 2.0. Meaning A gen 3 card can work on PCIE 1.0,2.0, and 3.0.
    The only differences between them is bandwidth which only becomes a problems with the best graphic cards (780ti and 290x) and won't be an issue in your case.
  14. Once I get everything and get it going Ill let you guys know how she runs. Ill get some games going and see how it runs on high settings.
  15. PCI express gen 3.0 port will support a PCI express gen 2.0 card
  16. Hey I know its been a while but I finally got everything I need for this cheapo build and got it running. So here it is.

    - Junk midtower case - old apevia that doesn't have hardly any ventalation.
    - 700w apevia psu(the 550w was toast so I picked this one up for $40
    -Gigabyte GA-P43-ES3G Motherboard - $Free
    - Intel Core 2 Duo E8600 3.33GHz CPU - $Free
    - 8 gb of DDR2-800 Ram $40
    - Asus Radeon HD 7790-OC 2gb gpu - $100
    2x250gb seagate hdds, 7200rpm with 64mb cash. $Free
    1x 2TB WD green hdd I bought from a buddy for $70.
    I have it dual booting Windows 7pro 64 bit and Ubuntu 14.04 64bit. 1 OS per 250gb hdd with the WD green for shared storage between the 2. I bought win7 pro from the same buddy as the WD hdd, brand new with wrapper still in the wrapper for $80.
    - Found a used 22" 1080p lcd monitor for $50 and has to buy a few sata cables and a 50' cat 6 cable.

    Got it going last night, after hours of updates and putting the basic programs on both I finally got to put a couple games on it.

    Dince I already bought them through steam I downloaded arma 2 and the dayz mod, and insurgency.

    Here are the results so far with no overclocking or anything yet.

    dayz mod on medium for most settings, AA on medium(4x) and anisotropic on highest setting im getting 40 to 45 FPS acording to FRAPS.

    Insurgency with eveything maxed is bouncing from 58 to 60 the whole time.

    So for what it is Id call it a win.
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