Upgrade

Hey, I want to upgrade my computer so it can at least run Skyrim, and I was thinking an upgrade in the GPU would be the best thing to do, but I want to know what you guys think. I'm not looking to run AAA games on max graphics, but to at least hopefully be able to run far cry 3. I have a <200$ budget. My specs are as follows:

GPU: Geforce 8400 gs
CPU: AMD anthalon dual core, 2.7 gigahertz
Ram: 4 GB

What do you guys think I should invest in? A new motherboard is a bit out of my budget.
26 answers Last reply
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  1. You are probably right about graphics, but ideally you are probably going to want to upgrade CPU too.

    For that you'll need to find out the model of your motherboard. Also which CPU you have would be good to know.

    Also, what resolution are you aiming to play at?
  2. I can't have this ideal situation where i could spend a good 500 dollars and revamp my pc, I just need a quick fix for now. I'm aiming for 1920x1080 (highest res). I don't care if I have to run my games on lowest graphics, I just want to be able to play my games on full screen. I'll find out what my mother board is shortly.
  3. Yeah I'm not trying to force you towards a big spend, just being realistic. If your CPU is very old (they've used the Athlon name for years for various CPUs) then it's not going to be fantastic and upgrade prospects will be slim. If it's a bit newer and uses AM3/AM3+ then there might be good budget CPU options for you.

    If your motherboard is suitable, then something like a Phenom II X4 965 and a Radeon HD7770 comes to around $200 and will run pretty much anything as long as you are happy to turn down settings until you get a sufficient framerate.
  4. I'm not sure if this is it, but I think my mother board is a Gigabye GA- M61PME - S2P. Is there any way to check which CPUs are compatible with my mother board, or do I have to search it up online?
  5. http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3009
    It's AM2/AM2+ which is not good for upgrade purposes. You could buy a solid graphics card and see how you get on, but on a lot of games you are just going to be CPU limited.

    An alternative would be to go for a new CPU/motherboard/ram and try to squeeze it under $200.
    AMD A-10 5800K $130
    cheap FM2 board $50
    8Gb of ram (ideally 1866Mhz or faster) ~$50

    It's a bit over, and you could always scale back the CPU a little to say an AMD A-8 5600K for about $105 to get back into budget.

    I know it's not really what you had in mind, but it's a pretty decent solution, assuming you have a solid PSU etc.
  6. Rammy said:
    http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3009
    It's AM2/AM2+ which is not good for upgrade purposes. You could buy a solid graphics card and see how you get on, but on a lot of games you are just going to be CPU limited.

    An alternative would be to go for a new CPU/motherboard/ram and try to squeeze it under $200.
    AMD A-10 5800K $130
    cheap FM2 board $50
    8Gb of ram (ideally 1866Mhz or faster) ~$50

    It's a bit over, and you could always scale back the CPU a little to say an AMD A-8 5600K for about $105 to get back into budget.

    I know it's not really what you had in mind, but it's a pretty decent solution, assuming you have a solid PSU etc.

    you CAN get phenom 2s for your bord but i don't reccomend it because it is a bit old i would also go with an apu system but if ou want to keep that system you can get a phenom 965 for around 90€ and a 7770 for around 110€ but the problem is that the cpu will get a bit bottlnecked by the motherboard
  7. jaslion said:
    you CAN get phenom 2s for your bord but i don't reccomend it because it is a bit old i would also go with an apu system but if ou want to keep that system you can get a phenom 965 for around 90€ and a 7770 for around 110€ but the problem is that the cpu will get a bit bottlnecked by the motherboard

    Yeah there are some Phenom IIs on the support list, however the 965 (which I also suggested) isn't on it. I'm not sure there is going to be a sensible, cost effective CPU upgrade using that motherboard.
  8. Rammy said:
    Yeah there are some Phenom IIs on the support list, however the 965 (which I also suggested) isn't on it. I'm not sure there is going to be a sensible, cost effective CPU upgrade using that motherboard.

    the phenom quad cores are really cheap now so it is up to him what he wants to do now finding another phenom that supports his motherboard wouldn't be so hard
  9. jaslion said:
    the phenom quad cores are really cheap now so it is up to him what he wants to do now finding another phenom that supports his motherboard wouldn't be so hard


    Not really. The widely available Phenom IIs are the 965 and 955, both of which are (mainly) 125W, so they aren't supported. There is a 95W version of the 955 but I can't see any new ones for sale- http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113007
    Add to that the fact it's going to be limited by both the system bus and legacy ram, and I'm not sure it makes much sense.
  10. Is RAM universal, so I can just take the RAM from my old mother board to my new one? Also, if I get a solid graphics card, would I be able to run skyrim 60 fps? That is my main concern.
  11. Nope, DDR2 ram and DDR3 ram are different shapes.

    Just upgrading a graphics card will help you in games that are light on CPU, but in heavy CPU games like Skyrim you are going to be held back. It'll probably run, but getting a consistent 60fps at 1080P (even at low detail) seems very unlikely to me.
    Far Cry 3 is likely to be even worse.
  12. Rammy.
    How can you not see this?
    http://www.gigabyte.com/support-downloads/cpu-support-popup.aspx?pid=3009
    EVERY Phenom II CPU is supported.
    Even the highest end six cores.
    He will have no problem running a decent quad like the Phenom II X4 955.
    http://www.compuvest.com/Search.jsp?Search=HDZ955FBGMBOX&advsite=cj&dtm=20130302&sku=322006291-00&CJAID=10547627&CJPID=3938566

    And here's the best graphics card within your limited budget.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814202023&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_sp=&AID=10446076&PID=3938566&SID=
  13. Unless I'm totally missing something it only supports 95W CPUs in AM3.

    Which is-
    Phenom II X6 1065T
    Phenom II X6 1055T (95W version)
    Phenom II X6 1045T
    Phenom II X6 1035T
    Phenom II X4 975
    Phenom II X4 960T
    Phenom II X4 955 (95W version)
    Phenom II X4 945
    Phenom II X4 925
    ....etc

    And as far as I can tell they've basically all been discontinued.
  14. Kamen_BG said:
    Rammy.
    How can you not see this?
    http://www.gigabyte.com/support-downloads/cpu-support-popup.aspx?pid=3009
    EVERY Phenom II CPU is supported.
    Even the highest end six cores.
    He will have no problem running a decent quad like the Phenom II X4 955.
    http://www.compuvest.com/Search.jsp?Search=HDZ955FBGMBOX&advsite=cj&dtm=20130302&sku=322006291-00&CJAID=10547627&CJPID=3938566

    And here's the best graphics card within your limited budget.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814202023&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_sp=&AID=10446076&PID=3938566&SID=


    Can anyone verify this? Additionally, how much would a 600 W PSU cost me?
  15. your processor is basically a steaming pile of crap for games. IMO, buy a decent video card, but save up to get a quad core. the gpu will help your frame rates a lot, but that processor will hold it back. similarly, f you decide to upgrade your processor, your computer will be fast, but your games wont be running that much better due to the lack of a decent gpu.
  16. Rammy said:
    Unless I'm totally missing something it only supports 95W CPUs in AM3.

    Which is-
    Phenom II X6 1065T
    Phenom II X6 1055T (95W version)
    Phenom II X6 1045T
    Phenom II X6 1035T
    Phenom II X4 975
    Phenom II X4 960T
    Phenom II X4 955 (95W version)
    Phenom II X4 945
    Phenom II X4 925
    ....etc

    And as far as I can tell they've basically all been discontinued.

    not all you can still get soome off those
  17. eklipz330 said:
    your processor is basically a steaming pile of crap for games. IMO, buy a decent video card, but save up to get a quad core. the gpu will help your frame rates a lot, but that processor will hold it back. similarly, f you decide to upgrade your processor, your computer will be fast, but your games wont be running that much better due to the lack of a decent gpu.


    Thanks, could you reccomend an efficient processor that is compatible with my motherboard with a price <100%?
  18. eklipz330 said:
    your processor is basically a steaming pile of crap for games. IMO, buy a decent video card, but save up to get a quad core. the gpu will help your frame rates a lot, but that processor will hold it back. similarly, f you decide to upgrade your processor, your computer will be fast, but your games wont be running that much better due to the lack of a decent gpu.


    Thanks, could you reccomend a good quad core that is compatible with my motherboard and is <100$
  19. hames1980 said:
    Thanks, could you reccomend a good quad core that is compatible with my motherboard and is <100$

    Phenom II X6 1065T
    Phenom II X6 1055T (95W version)
    Phenom II X6 1045T
    Phenom II X6 1035T
    Phenom II X4 960T
    Phenom II X4 955 (95W version)
    Phenom II X4 945
    Phenom II X4 925
    one of those or any 95 watt phenom you can find (don't go with and 925 go at least with an 945)
  20. You should be able to find used versions of these CPUs^^^

    You have enough RAM right now - as long as you're on 64-bit Windows.

    Grab an HD 7770 and you'll be playing every game out there at 1080p, though you may have to lower Far Cry 3 to Medium to play.

    You should be able to get a used PII and an HD 7770 for $200.
  21. do wat jessterman21 says
    if you look around on ebay or so you can get stuff for no money at al (found an phanom x4 965 being sold for 40€) so that proves a lot.
    and it will be well in you budget now you may even be able to pick an 6core phenom
  22. I've never used Ebay before, what are the chances of me getting a destroyed/faulty cpu, or not being sent one at all?
  23. hames1980 said:
    I've never used Ebay before, what are the chances of me getting a destroyed/faulty cpu, or not being sent one at all?

    Extremely low. Not as low as buying a new one from an online retailer, but very close. And everyone has to honor their return policies or ebay will kick their butts.
  24. One last question, I've never heard of F2 or F1 slots, what are they, and are they compatible with A2+/A2 slots?
  25. hames1980 said:
    I've never used Ebay before, what are the chances of me getting a destroyed/faulty cpu, or not being sent one at all?


    i bought my whole pc from ebay (part by part) and evrything worked just fine so it is pretty safe you just need to watch how good they are and how many things they have sold already
  26. hames1980 said:
    One last question, I've never heard of F2 or F1 slots, what are they, and are they compatible with A2+/A2 slots?


    No, FM1 and FM2 are different sockets. AM2/AM2+/AM3/AM3+ have some CPUs (not all) that can be used in the type right before or right after the one designated for the chip in question. (Example: Athlon II X2 240 works in AM2+ and AM3+ motherboards.)
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