Looking to upgrade my PC for upcoming games such as Fallout 4, Just Cause 3 etc. Want advice due to inexperience.

Am thinking about upgrading my PC in order to futureproof it for upcoming PC games: Fallout 4, Just Cause 3 etc. as well as many more but these seem to be the most resource intensive.
Details below, thank you for helping!

Approximate Purchase Date: Within a month or two

Budget Range: $300-400 AUD

System Usage from Most to Least Important: gaming >> surfing internet >watching movies

Are you buying a monitor: No

Current System specs:
Operating System
Windows 10 Home 64-bit

CPU
AMD A8-5500
Trinity 32nm Technology

RAM
4.00GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz (11-11-12-28)

Motherboard
MEDION MS-7800 (P0)
(I think it has 4x PCI-E slots with characteristics: 3.3V, Shared, PME)

Graphics
MTC26T42 (1920x1080@59Hz)
512MB ATI AMD Radeon HD 7560D (MSI)

Storage
931GB Seagate ST1000DM 003-1CH162 SATA Disk Device (SATA)

Optical Drives
DTSOFT Virtual CdRom Device
HL-DT-ST BD-RE BH16NS40 SATA CdRom Device

Audio
Realtek High Definition Audio

Bought the computer from ALDI, the following is a link to a very similar PC build from MEDION:
http://aldi.medion.com/md8369/uk/
(Think specs etc. are in tabs to the left)

Parts to Upgrade:
From some research I've done the parts I think in order of most important to upgrade to least are:
RAM, Graphics, CPU, Motherboard, power supply (was thinking CX600 — 80 PLUS® Bronze Certified Power Supply)

(HOWEVER i'm completely incompetent at this and really don't know what's more necessary, please feel free to make new suggestions and reorder)

Do you need to buy OS: No

Preferred Website(s) for Parts: No idea, sorry

Location: Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Parts Preferences: by brand or type: Currently have AMD graphics and CPU which I believe might be integrated? However no real preference for brand, whatever's best :)

Overclocking: Maybe? Not sure what it is

SLI or Crossfire: Maybe, confusion ensues

Your Monitor Resolution: 1920x1080

Additional Comments: PC can be as noisy as ever, I don't mind; Games I'd like to run and in future mod include Fallout 4, Just Cause 3, I can currently run heavily modded skyrim well but not really any of the HD texture packs so i'd like to be able to do that

And Most Importantly, Why Are You Upgrading:
Looking at the minimum spec requirements for all the new games I want just makes me cry a little on the inside nowadays, 8gb ram min for a lot of games now, I can run almost all my current games fairly well with no real framerate issues, I don't mind if the framerate's below 60fps, 30fps seems fine to me. Some games like Civilization V and Skyrim cause me the most trouble in terms of framerate. Main reason for upgrading is that I want a PC that can handle better games and is moderately future proof for the new upcoming titles :)

Thanks so much for any help you can give me, it's truly appreciated!
20 answers Last reply
More about upgrade upcoming games fallout advice due inexperience
  1. You are going to probably have a hard time with Fallout 4. You are just barely over the minimum CPU requirement. You will need ram, for sure, a power supply, then graphics card. No knowing how many ram slots, you have, or are being used, I just went with a brand new 8gb kit. Mixing ram brands is not a good idea anyway. If you are running a single 4gb stick, you might be able to find a matching 4gb stick, on ebay. You would have to remove the ram, to get the model info.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.00 @ IJK)
    Video Card: Asus Radeon R9 270X 2GB DirectCU II Video Card ($229.00 @ Umart)
    Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($89.00 @ Centre Com)
    Total: $391.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-10 01:40 AEDT+1100
  2. logainofhades said:
    You are going to probably have a hard time with Fallout 4. You are just barely over the minimum CPU requirement. You will need ram, for sure, a power supply, then graphics card. No knowing how many ram slots, you have, or are being used, I just went with a brand new 8gb kit. Mixing ram brands is not a good idea anyway. If you are running a single 4gb stick, you might be able to find a matching 4gb stick, on ebay. You would have to remove the ram, to get the model info.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.00 @ IJK)
    Video Card: Asus Radeon R9 270X 2GB DirectCU II Video Card ($229.00 @ Umart)
    Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($89.00 @ Centre Com)
    Total: $391.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-10 01:40 AEDT+1100



    Thanks for the help :) I have 4 RAM slots available with 2 currently in use, the specs for both the ram sticks are:
    Type DDR3
    Size 2048 MBytes
    Manufacturer Nanya Technology
    Max Bandwidth PC3-12800 (800 MHz)
    Part Number M2X2G64CB88G7N-DG
    Serial Number 25F03403
    Week/year 11 / 13
    SPD Ext. XMP

    And overall for RAM:
    Type DDR3
    Size 4096 MBytes
    Channels # Dual
    DRAM Frequency 798.4 MHz
    CAS# Latency (CL) 11 clocks
    RAS# to CAS# Delay (tRCD) 11 clocks
    RAS# Precharge (tRP) 12 clocks
    Cycle Time (tRAS) 28 clocks
    Bank Cycle Time (tRC) 39 clocks


    Also, is 16gb RAM overkill? 8gb is definitely enough for pretty much all current games I know that but just wondering.
  3. Also wondering how the motherboard ties into this?
    How can I be sure it'll be compatible with the new parts i'm buying?
  4. As long as you have a PCI-E x16 slot, GPU will not be an issue compatibility wise. You might want to make sure your PSU is using a standard ATX connection. It should be. I think only Dell and HP do crazy proprietary stuff, like PSU motherboard connectors. I would take and try to find another 4gb kit, of that same ram, just to see if it can save you some money. If so, then you could put a bit more into the GPU, and maybe get up to about a GTX 950.
  5. logainofhades said:
    As long as you have a PCI-E x16 slot, GPU will not be an issue compatibility wise. You might want to make sure your PSU is using a standard ATX connection. It should be. I think only Dell and HP do crazy proprietary stuff, like PSU motherboard connectors. I would take and try to find another 4gb kit, of that same ram, just to see if it can save you some money. If so, then you could put a bit more into the GPU, and maybe get up to about a GTX 950.


    I have a single PCI-E x16 slot, the other 3 are x1, assuming this is fine? ; When you say get another 4gb kit, could that just be a single 4gb stick with ddr3 and at the same speed (798MHz ~ 800MHz) as my current 4gb(2x 2gb dual) RAM setup and i'd just have to plug it in and everything would be sweet?

    Thanks heaps for helping me out by the way, I really appreciate it :)
  6. You want another set of 2x2gb, like you have, for 8gb. You do not want to mix ram sizes, or speeds. Couldn't find a good price, on your particular ram chips, but this ram is the closest I could find, specs wise. As I thought, the savings is enough for a better GTX 950.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 950 2GB Video Card ($259.00 @ CPL Online)
    Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($89.00 @ Centre Com)
    Total: $396.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-10 03:56 AEDT+1100
  7. logainofhades said:
    You want another set of 2x2gb, like you have, for 8gb. You do not want to mix ram sizes, or speeds. Couldn't find a good price, on your particular ram chips, but this ram is the closest I could find, specs wise. As I thought, the savings is enough for a better GTX 950.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 950 2GB Video Card ($259.00 @ CPL Online)
    Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($89.00 @ Centre Com)
    Total: $396.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-10 03:56 AEDT+1100



    Earlier you said that my CPU was barely over minimum requirements, is it worth upgrading or is it too expensive for a less significant performance boost?
  8. logainofhades said:
    You want another set of 2x2gb, like you have, for 8gb. You do not want to mix ram sizes, or speeds. Couldn't find a good price, on your particular ram chips, but this ram is the closest I could find, specs wise. As I thought, the savings is enough for a better GTX 950.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 950 2GB Video Card ($259.00 @ CPL Online)
    Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($89.00 @ Centre Com)
    Total: $396.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-10 03:56 AEDT+1100



    Just curious because I was thinking that a weak cpu would bottleneck my pc's performance overall, might be willing to spend the money on an upgraded cpu, what's your opinion?
  9. if this is just for low settings at a low resolution(<=900p) without any anti-aliasing, barely any post-processing effects, than you should be okay with those recommendations. a lot of games require more than 2GB of VRAM already though.

    if you do want to play newer games at a good resolution with good effects than your budget just isn't going to cut it with new components. if you decide to go higher:

    about the motherboard and CPU: if sticking with AMD i would move to FX platform with a non-APU. though since you would be changing motherboard and CPU in that case it would probably be a better idea to go for Z97 and decent i5.

    RAM: i have seen many people try combining different memory sticks without good results. many will not be compatible with each other even if they are the same size, bandwidth, and same timings. may be better off getting a new decent set of 2x 4GB.

    GPU: 2GB of VRAM is going to have trouble with good settings at 1080P with any newer games. most already require 3+GB for decent settings at that resolution.

    Power Supply: find something on these pages here from Tom's = http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/id-2547993/psu-tier-list.html
  10. wertay2 said:
    logainofhades said:
    You want another set of 2x2gb, like you have, for 8gb. You do not want to mix ram sizes, or speeds. Couldn't find a good price, on your particular ram chips, but this ram is the closest I could find, specs wise. As I thought, the savings is enough for a better GTX 950.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Memory: Kingston 2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($24.00 @ Umart)
    Video Card: Asus GeForce GTX 950 2GB Video Card ($259.00 @ CPL Online)
    Power Supply: Antec Neo Eco 520W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($89.00 @ Centre Com)
    Total: $396.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-10 03:56 AEDT+1100



    Just curious because I was thinking that a weak cpu would bottleneck my pc's performance overall, might be willing to spend the money on an upgraded cpu, what's your opinion?


    There aren't any worthwhile CPU upgrades, for your particular system.
  11. GObonzo said:
    if this is just for low settings at a low resolution(<=900p) without any anti-aliasing, barely any post-processing effects, than you should be okay with those recommendations. a lot of games require more than 2GB of VRAM already though.

    if you do want to play newer games at a good resolution with good effects than your budget just isn't going to cut it with new components. if you decide to go higher:

    about the motherboard and CPU: if sticking with AMD i would move to FX platform with a non-APU. though since you would be changing motherboard and CPU in that case it would probably be a better idea to go for Z97 and decent i5.

    RAM: i have seen many people try combining different memory sticks without good results. many will not be compatible with each other even if they are the same size, bandwidth, and same timings. may be better off getting a new decent set of 2x 4GB.

    GPU: 2GB of VRAM is going to have trouble with good settings at 1080P with any newer games. most already require 3+GB for decent settings at that resolution.

    Power Supply: find something on these pages here from Tom's = http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/id-2547993/psu-tier-list.html



    Say I increased my budget to $600 max how far would that get me? Thanks! :)
  12. Not far, because you would need a copy of Windows as well. You basically need a whole new system. You could go ahead and get yourself a new PSU, ram, and best GPU you can, then reuse it in a new system later. A bottleneck won't hurt anything.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.00 @ IJK)
    Video Card: Asus Radeon R9 290 4GB DirectCU II Video Card ($395.00 @ CPL Online)
    Power Supply: EVGA 750W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($129.00 @ CPL Online)
    Total: $597.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-13 00:48 AEDT+1100
  13. logainofhades said:
    Not far, because you would need a copy of Windows as well. You basically need a whole new system. You could go ahead and get yourself a new PSU, ram, and best GPU you can, then reuse it in a new system later. A bottleneck won't hurt anything.

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    Memory: G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.00 @ IJK)
    Video Card: Asus Radeon R9 290 4GB DirectCU II Video Card ($395.00 @ CPL Online)
    Power Supply: EVGA 750W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($129.00 @ CPL Online)
    Total: $597.00
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2015-10-13 00:48 AEDT+1100


    Hmm, how come i'd need a new copy of windows? (Unless you assumed I didn't already have Windows 10? In which case i do)
    Thanks for the help though this looks like it'll shape up well haha :)
  14. logainofhades said:
    G.Skill Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($73.00 @ IJK)
    Asus Radeon R9 290 4GB DirectCU II Video Card ($395.00 @ CPL Online)
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    that's very expensive for a 4GB 290 and for 8GB of 1600 RAM. is this because it's australia?
    in the US an 8GB 390 is only ~$300. and a good 2x 4GB set of DDR3 is <=$50.

    wertay2 said:
    Hmm, how come i'd need a new copy of windows? (Unless you assumed I didn't already have Windows 10? In which case i do)
    Thanks for the help though this looks like it'll shape up well haha :)
    there's a new article here at Tom's explaining how the new Windows 10 activation works:
    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/microsoft-reveals-windows-10-activation,30188.html#xtor=EPR-8886
    haven't read through this but i'm pretty sure if you haven't bought a serial the "free" activation works based on your specific hardware specs. a new motherboard would in theory deactivate the current install. if you already have a disk of Windows 7 or 8 you should still be able to install that and upgrade again for free.
  15. Aussie prices are crazy high. You need a new copy of windows, because the OS your system came with, is an OEM license, and tied to the motherboard on that system. Even when doing the Win 10 upgrade, which upgrades your old OS key to work with 10, it is still an OEM license.
  16. logainofhades said:
    Even when doing the Win 10 upgrade, which upgrades your old OS key to work with 10, it is still an OEM license.
    but like i stated, if you(wertay2) have a preexisting Windows 7 or 8 disk and/or serial: you can install that when the new system is completed and then do the free upgrade to 10. it will not be OEM if you have a retail Windows 7 or 8 serial and use that disk or download the corresponding image from Microsoft for flash install options.
  17. Hmm ok, but from what I can see in your suggestions I'm not changing the motherboard so I should be fine right? And yeah Aussie prices are stupidly high for anything :'(
  18. ^ Ignore that, I get what you mean now; Will probably purchase the components you recommended soon, thanks heaps!
  19. Asus Radeon R9 290 4GB DirectCU II Video Card
    Can't purchase this component online in Australia from what I can see, CPL is out of stock and they're the only provider listed, any alternatives with a similar price (Doesn't have to be cheaper, just similar)
  20. wertay2 said:
    Asus Radeon R9 290 4GB DirectCU II Video Card
    Can't purchase this component online in Australia from what I can see, CPL is out of stock and they're the only provider listed, any alternatives with a similar price (Doesn't have to be cheaper, just similar)
    i usually check Amazon and Newegg.com first when searching for components. but if TigerDirect also has an Aus site maybe check that also.
    if that doesn't return any good hits maybe check AMD & Nvidia's Aus/Global sites and see if there is a "Buy" link to any other retailers that ship to Australia.
    it does not need to be that particular 290 model. any trusted retailer you find, just use their search option for AMD R9 or Nvidia 900 series cards and then narrow the search down to within your price range and performance expectations. also check any user reviews available there for any particular model you find and make sure the positives far outweigh the negatives.

    this search took me about 30secs and returned a nice array of cards available for Aus:

    http://www.newegg.com/global/au/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100054058%20600536049%20600358543%20600007787%20600531760%20600473877%20600473871%20600473876%20600537575%20600565502&IsNodeId=1&bop=And&SpeTabStoreType=1&Order=PRICE&PageSize=30

    any cards you find that you're interested in; just come back here and ask for some more advice about them.
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