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Upgrade Help Needed - Skyrim

Last response: in Video Games
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December 15, 2012 7:09:46 PM

Hello,

My 11 year old wants me to upgrade his PC for Xmas so that he can play Skyrim. His current PC is as follows:

G31MX motherboard
Dual core Celeron E3300 2.5ghz
1GB DDR2

Please can someone advise me whether I need to upgrade RAM to 4 GB and whether I can put a 1 GB graphics card in his PC and if we can, whether it would run Skyrim?

We have limited resources as he is one of four children and I can't afford to waste money buying things for his PC for it still not to work.

Any advice is really appreciated

Thanks
Mark

More about : upgrade needed skyrim

December 15, 2012 8:22:43 PM

Well the G31MX has a PCIe slot so depending on the power supply should take most cards. You will defenitely need more RAM no matter what, atleast 3 or 4 gig.
And you will need a graphics card, to run Skyrim on low or medium you will need one well most likely around $100.
Want suggestions or is it too much $?
December 15, 2012 8:32:49 PM

Hmm. Basically, you will need to upgrade to 4GB of RAM, and get a new video card at the minimum. You will likely need to upgrade the PSU too.

Something like this would run Skyrim.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Plus the RAM:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I'm not sure what PSU you have, but if it is less than ~400 Watts you should probably get a new one.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Something like that would work.

Related resources
December 15, 2012 8:40:50 PM

Thanks ever so much for your reply and the links. I had a budget of $250 and just didn't want to waste the money if it was a non starter due to the processor and motherboard.

Thanks again
Mark
a b U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 3:47:33 PM

How comfortable are you with working on the system ? -- that MOBO is a bit older and still has a few jumper switches etc. that need to be set when installing RAM modules unlike newer boards that are self setting so you will want to be sure you read through the manual and understand the jumper settings depending on what modules you buy ( there are 2 jumpers that need to be set depending on the CPU FSB speed and the RAM module rated speed) and setting them incorrectly may make the system unstable. So be sure you or someone you know can set it properly or find out what speed rated memory it is currently using and get new ones that are the same speed. (ie. the 1333Mhz. modules listed are probably faster than the ones installed currently and will require resetting the jumpers !)

That said the parts listed are a good choice and should work fine - though the CELERON CPU might make performance a bit on the low end so he may need to keep the game settings turned down some (you might also consider swapping the CPU with a newer Core2duo or core2quad CPU that is supported by the MOBO also if the budget allows. - though the LGA 775 CPUs are kind off harder to find since they are no longer being sold at most retailers you might try looking at a small computer store nearby and see if they have any availablle used for a good price that would be better than the Celeron)
a c 291 U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 3:54:21 PM

voiidwulf said:
Hmm. Basically, you will need to upgrade to 4GB of RAM, and get a new video card at the minimum. You will likely need to upgrade the PSU too.

Something like this would run Skyrim.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Plus the RAM:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I'm not sure what PSU you have, but if it is less than ~400 Watts you should probably get a new one.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Something like that would work.


No man, those RAM sticks will not work with that motherboard!

Mark, is the computer case standard size? If it is, I'd suggest this combo:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Memory: Corsair XMS2 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2-800 Memory ($45.90 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7770 1GB Video Card ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 450W ATX12V Power Supply ($30.95 @ NCIX US)
Total: $176.84
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-12-16 12:54 EST-0500)
a b U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 4:41:58 PM

Sunius said:
No man, those RAM sticks will not work with that motherboard!


Actually they should work fine - they just will run at the lower MHZ setting that the MOBO does support -- RAM modules can run at lower speeds than the rating (the rating is for the max that they will support but you can always run them at lower ratings) and those are a much better deal at $20 instead of lower rated modules like those you listed at $46 !! -- Didn't notice at first the original listing is for DDR3 not DDR2 Modules !
a c 291 U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 4:45:12 PM

No, DDR3 RAM will DEFINITELY NOT work in DDR2 slot. Seriously, they are physically different.

December 16, 2012 5:25:35 PM

if he just wants it to play games and money is tight.

a game console might be a better solution.

you could buy a ps3 for $249
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

or you can get an xbox 360+skyrim+forza for $250

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...



the problem is knowing kids nowadays they will complain about how the game looks when comparing it to consoles. because naturally they will compare it to there friends who most likely play it on consoles

a c 291 U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 5:29:13 PM

Consoles aren't really worth it. The upgrade path I've suggested will grant better results for less money.
December 16, 2012 7:03:03 PM

Sunius said:
No man, those RAM sticks will not work with that motherboard!

Mark, is the computer case standard size? If it is, I'd suggest this combo:

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

Memory: Corsair XMS2 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR2-800 Memory ($45.90 @ NCIX US)
Video Card: MSI Radeon HD 7770 1GB Video Card ($99.99 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 450W ATX12V Power Supply ($30.95 @ NCIX US)
Total: $176.84
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-12-16 12:54 EST-0500)


Thats the upgrade list I would provide as well ^ but if your budget is $250, then I would also maybe get a better cpu like a core 2 duo. Skyrim is fairly cpu intensive and the celeron is not exactly top of the line... or middle of the line..
a c 291 U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 7:22:04 PM

Should work fine with celeron, it's above minimum game requirements - it's not an ancient one, it's from 2009. Of course, if you're willing to spend some money for the CPU, a second hand core 2 duo or core 2 quad would do nicely.
a b U Graphics card
December 16, 2012 8:33:32 PM

Sunius said:
Should work fine with celeron, it's above minimum game requirements - it's not an ancient one, it's from 2009. Of course, if you're willing to spend some money for the CPU, a second hand core 2 duo or core 2 quad would do nicely.


This -- though for that system I might go with a 7750 instead of the 7770 (because they use no external Power connection and are only marginally lower performance -- thus could probably also skip the replacement PSU and put that money into the CPU upgrade instead !
a c 291 U Graphics card
December 17, 2012 3:40:52 AM

We have no info whatsoever about that PSU - it looks like 3 year old generic unit. I wouldn't put even HD 7750 near it. It may not end nicely. Furthermore, it's only $30 for the PSU: and HD 7770 costs the as much as HD 7750, and performs much better.
a b U Graphics card
December 17, 2012 3:56:14 AM

i would add to sunius's list by adding a second hand quad core off ebay. you can get 1 for as little as $50 even the odd new 1 shows up now and again... try to get 1 thats faster than 2.4ghz. a q6600 q8300 8400 offer the best bang for buck.
i seriously wouldnt pay new prices for a quad core 2 on sites like newegg. most of the 1s you see now on ebay are likely to be the 1s that havent been oc'd as they tend to come out of pc's whos owners have upgraded to an ivy. so they may be used but they will work. just make sure you get it off a reputable seller.
!