Where my bottleneck? (PC Gaming)

I use my PC mostly just for games. It's getting a little old now so I'm looking into doing some upgrades. I was wondering which singal component upgrade would lead to the most significant gains in game performance for games such as Dawn of ar II and World of Warcraft. Here are my specs:

Intel(R) Pentium(R) D CPU 2.80GHz
2gb Total Memory
GeForce 9800 GT (1GB, 1.5GHz) GPU
Mainboard : Dell Inc. 0WG864
Chipset: Dell P965/G965
FSB : 4x 200MHz (800MHz)
Storage Devices : 160GB
Microsoft Windows Vista Home 32bit
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  1. Definitely the Pentium D that is giving you the bottleneck, get a Core 2 Duo E7500 and another 2 GB of RAM. Even though Vista won't recognize all 4GB of RAM due to it being a 32-bit OS, the extra RAM will definitely help. The video card is more than enough for the games you mentioned above its just not getting enough push from your CPU.

    E7500 is $140 on newegg and is clocked at 2.93 GHz
    2GB of ram costs around $15-30 and more ram will definitely make your computer run smoother.

    Also if that computer is a prebuilt dell it could be your powersupply not being enough to fully power the video card.
  2. DoW 2 takes advantage of a quad core cpu but WoW will not.

    I have a AMD Phenom 9500 and it out performs my friends E8400 by about 25% in DoW 2 (we both have 4GB DDR2 800 and 9800GT's). But in something older that didn't have multicore in mind he will get at least 50% better performance than me (like Guild Wars or TF2).

    But with that said, the last time I played WoW it ran fine on my AMD 2500+ Barton (I stopped about 1.5 years after release). So, even a low GHZ quad core should run WoW fine.

    What resolution do you run at as well? Shouldn't really matter for those game though. I run DoW 2 at 1920x1080p on Ultra and I get ~35 FPS average, 20 min. On high settings is ~40 FPS average, 30 min.

    But like the previous poster said, you GPU is not the bottleneck your memory and CPU are.
  3. 4GB Ram
    A Newish Dual Core - E8400?
    and a 4850 if you want price/performance
    Remember though you are looking at a new mobo and probly psu as well.
  4. Consider the games he's playing to boot. Replace a 9800GT with a 4850? He will recieve a small performance increase considering the price he's going to pay. The video card is more than enough.

    The Pentium D is a LGA 775 socket chip and the Core 2 Duo/Quad are also LGA 775 socket chips so you shouldn't have to upgrade your motherboard.

    I would bet you wouldn't have to change your PSU as processor change won't draw more or enough more power to require PSU change.
  5. Everybody, a 9800GT is enough; its the Pentium D holding him back. Even though its 2 CPU's, its not efficent, and any C2D will help him a ton.

    CPU bottleneck all the way, upgrading anything else will lead to almost no increase in performance.
  6. CPu in this case. But if you want it to be speedier without changing hardware drop back to windows 2000 or XP. Check your processes in task manager is there one eating alot of memory?
  7. upgrade your cpu to c2d e4500 or pentium dual-core e2200. and make your ram to 3gb.

    i think that should do it. :sarcastic:
  8. Be very careful if thats a dell mobo on any chip upgrade. They lock their bios down so much, upgrades like CPUs become touch and go even if it is a 965 chipset. Your GPU is great. Take the part number from the PSU and do a few searches. Generally, Dell PSU are underrated and will perform better than expected. My suggestion would be find you're budget and look at a mobo, cpu, ram upgrade.
  9. As I own, am now using, a Dell E520 that came with a E6420 & 2GB DDR2-667, 160GB HHD, 305W PSU & a GF 7300LE it can be upgraded. Read the Overclockers.com forums or the DELL Support forums and you will gain a wealth of knowledge.
    I have Upgraded my CPU to E6700 C2D (with a Q6600 or Q6700 C2Q next), 375W PSU, 4 GB Corsair DDR2-800, 2x 250GB Clavier Blue WD HHD's, GF 8800GTS 512mb. Any 65nm CPU will work including any 65nm Quad Cores with the latest BIOS (See Dell.com/updates). The 45nm CPU's will NOT work in the DELL 0WG864 Mobo. I have tried to OC it using ClockGen and SetFSB without success. My son upgraded his DELL XPS 410 along the same lines and as he has a different Mobo ( OCT017 ) he is able to OC his E6700 to 3.4 Ghz 24-7 using ClockGEN. You just have to disable User Controls and add ClockGEN to your AV exception file (he uses AVAST). He has had it all the way up to 3.54 Ghz stable with the stock HSF (But taking the side cover off and adding a 6" fan temporarily).
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