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Help! Upgrading my slimline to play games.

Last response: in Video Games
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January 10, 2013 6:18:23 AM


Hellos. Recently I have been thinking of whether I should upgrade my PC to something capable of playing games from steam. My current computer I have is a HP Pavilion Slimline s5310f. Right now I'm trying to decide between buying a new case, psu, and a gpu; or just the psu and gpu. I know that I can't get a graphics card without first buying a new psu (220W power supply). Also I can't get a new psu without a larger case. As for the cpu, I don't think I can upgrade this with how much money I have($300).

hp pavilion slimline s5310f product specifications page:
http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/Docume...

First the case. I have an old Emachine w3107 and was thinking I can use the case so I won't have to buy a new one, but I don't even know if it's large enough for a decent psu. So should I stick with this or spend some extra cash(I would prefer to save some for a new game)?

some random emachines page from cnet:
http://reviews.cnet.com/desktops/emachines-w3107-sempro...

Next is the psu and graphics card. As for these two I'm not really up to date with what I can get that's more bang for my buck. So anything that is recommended I will probably choose if it's in my budget.

I hope that any one who helps out doesn't find this to be to much a hassle. Sorry and also thanks for the help.
January 10, 2013 5:52:06 PM

That doesn't look like too bad of a system. If you're trying to save some cash, you could probably get away with using the old emachine case.

If you can swing 309.98 + tax + shipping up front (with a mail in rebate), you could go with something like these:

GeForce GTX 560 Ti Video Card - 1GB
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

Coolmax CTI-700B ATX Power Supply - 700W
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite...

That's going to be a pretty big upgrade compared to what you've got now, and the 560 Ti is a pretty high-end card at a decent price. If that emachine case is a mid-tower, you should be able to just barely squeeze that card in there. If it doesn't fit, you can pick up a mid-tower from TD or newegg for like $20 that it should fit in.
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Best solution

January 10, 2013 6:09:50 PM

Totally disagree with the guy above. The graphics card he recommends is kinda outdated, its still a good card but you can get better for the price. Also the PSU is rubbish.

My suggestion would be to get a HD7750. It's a pretty weak graphics card but it doesn't require additional power cables and comes in slimline forms (if needed). Your processor is quite old so it's going to hold you back in most things, no matter how powerful a graphics card you buy.
This won't make a particularly good machine, but then I doubt spending $300 on it will either. I'd take the extra $200 and start saving for a new machine which you can select parts from scratch.
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January 10, 2013 6:46:17 PM

Best answer selected by BradleyJones.
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January 10, 2013 7:06:12 PM

That's a decent point Rammy. I would still be worried about the psu he has though. 220 watts is ridiculously low.

While the psu I recommended isn't a high-end name-brand, I've had pretty good success with those in company computers that are on 24/7. The point was to be cheap and get the job done. The output on that psu would give you plenty of power to not have to worry about it.

The HD7750 wouldn't be horrible, I guess, but I'd definitely still look into a new psu, even with that card.
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January 10, 2013 7:54:34 PM

Yeah the PSU is a potential problem, but he only has an X2 and a HD7750 in this scenario, total tdp of around 120W. It's quite feasible it'll work. 700W is total overkill, though if it was also intended for a future build then there might be sense in playing it safe, though in that scenario I'd go for a better quality brand, and a better quality certification (80+ Bronze really).

HD7750 is by no means a powerful card, but its the most powerful card you can buy that
A) requires no extra power cables, draws all its power from the PCIe slot
B) comes in low profile form

He could always shift onto his other case, and buy a new CPU, PSU and GPU. It'd give a significantly more capable machine, but it'd use all the budget.
Something like
Phenom ii X4 - $100
Corsair CX430 - $40, 20 with rebates (seriously? that's a good deal)
HD7850 1Gb - $175, 155 with rebates
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January 12, 2013 6:07:46 AM

Yay. Thanks for the help guys. I should have my new build done in about a week. The total cost ended up being 346 after taxes.
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