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Another one of the Millions Upgrade Questions...

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May 17, 2006 8:47:42 PM

Good Day,

I know you have to answer this question soo many times but I am humbling asking for advice, opinions and comments about my decisions. I currently own a

1.- PIV 3,2 Ghz socket 478
2.- Intel 865 Perl MB
3.- 2 Gb Ram
4.- 2 HDD Sata 250 HDD
5.- X-fi Elite Pro
6.- Nvidia 6800 GT XFX 256 MB DDR3 AGP
7.- Viewsonic 17" VP LCD Digital Monitor
8. Kandalf Thermaltake Tower

As you can see it isnt a bad system at all but its showing its age. I use it
almost 90 [%] for gaming (its my home PC) and my common preferences when playing games are all setting maxed out with a res of 1024x760. I never play with more res (please dont ask why because I dont know why). The problem is that with this configuration I am beginning to have troubles when playing games with my settings. For example Oblivion is not very well played, Call Of Duty 2 shows problems and Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter doesnt give me troubles but I am in the first level and I have the feeling it will decrease its performance more ahead.
My ideal system upgrade would be the following: a DX10 Video Card and Intel Conroe. After researching, reading, etc, I have come to two conclusions,

1.- Intel Conroe is going to be released near August. I am from Chile, so I`ll have to wait for about 3 or 4 months for them to appear here and I assume they will be really expensive. As I have read the mobo will cost a great deal. As I read in this forum from another member, it is prudent to wait for prices to stabilize and for bugs to be corrected. So, taking that in account, I will be able to buy the Conroe about past Christmas.

2.- I dont think (it is my personal guess) DX10 video cards are going to appear during this year. Nvidia isnt going to push an agressive stand and launch two video cards in one year. And they are even promoting their 7900 GTX2 which isnt a DX10 one. also I dont think (and it was also confirmed buy Microsoft) that Vista is going to be released during this year or the first months of 2007 (I read something about May-June of 2007, date that fits perfectly with the anual new video cards). So in Febraury of 2007 I think we will be seeing DX10 video cards, so, her in Chile they will be arriving in May (as happened with the 7900GTX cards)

Taking all I have said into account, muy new Conroe DX10 rig is a dream for the 2007, not this year.
Thanks God I dont have budget problems so I am thinking on upgrading now. But I am not that crazy and I know that with a new video card, let say, Nvidia 7900 GTX my problems are solved until the next year because my CPU is fine enough. But as you may notice to buy a new video card I need to buy a new mobo to support pcie and a new CPU.

I really want to buy a Conroe so my best move is to sell my actual CPU and video card and with that money cover almost the buy for a new CPU and mobo. And here are my questions,

1.- After long readings and considering prices, my choice is for an AMD X2 4200 or 4400. The first one costs 425 dollars and the last one 540 Dollars. As I said I can buy any of them so talking about price/performance, what is the best choice?

2.- What mobo is a good one for this CPU?. I dont want a premium, deluxe super titanium one. I dont care about SLI. I think it is a bad excuse to make you buy another expensive video card. I only need a normal good mobo. Which is the best chipset? Via or Nvidia?..I have models of Asus, Abit, Msi and DFI.

3.- Finally I want to buy a 7900GTX video card

All of the above cost about 1270 dollars. Are they worth that money...Is it a good move?

Please sorry for the long story but I wait for comments, opinnios and suggestions...
May 17, 2006 9:41:48 PM

A good stepping stone would be to get an Asrock 939Dual-SATA2 It will allow you to gradually upgrade instead of having to blow a big chunk of money in one go.

This is possible due to this motherboard supporting both AGP and PCI-E, this way, you can use your current GPU now and upgrade to PCI-E later.

On top of that, if you do decide to go for Socket AM2 in the future, you can simply get the AM2 Riser expension card and proceed to upgrade the CPU and memory.

Obviously, you'll also be able to migrate your current memory and the rest of your hardware, further decreasing the amount that you'll have to pay for your initial upgrade.

As far as CPUs go, I am partial to Dual Cores, I love mine and make good use of it daily (media encoding, distributed computing, 2D and 3D CAD) even though games are not quite there yet.
May 17, 2006 10:05:02 PM

Thanks for your reply,

I forgot to mention something in my long sleepy first post. My first option was to buy a MB that supports both AGP and PCI express. Of course this
was a real solution because with a new 7900GTX and my current CPU I could wait for Conroe and even DX10 cards without problems. Two points with that,

a) Here in Chile, only one dealer has a "dual AGP/PCIe" card an Asus one that I dont remember the model. The problem is that it is far from here (not in my city)
b) The above isnt really a great problem. The worse of it is that I sent emails to 7900GTX vendors and all replied me that thay have had issues with this "hybrid" mobos...So my dreams were destroyed.....and I opted for what I posted before.

I remember that I want the CPU to play games and the advantage of a X2 AMD one is that I can use my actual 2 GB Ram. What I really dont know, given performance and price which is more convenient, a 4200 or a 4400

Thanks...
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May 18, 2006 5:26:29 AM

IMO the 4200 would be a better idea. Get the 4200 and overclock it if you want the extra speed.
May 18, 2006 2:06:42 PM

Quote:
Thanks for your reply,

I forgot to mention something in my long sleepy first post. My first option was to buy a MB that supports both AGP and PCI express. Of course this
was a real solution because with a new 7900GTX and my current CPU I could wait for Conroe and even DX10 cards without problems. Two points with that,

a) Here in Chile, only one dealer has a "dual AGP/PCIe" card an Asus one that I dont remember the model. The problem is that it is far from here (not in my city)
b) The above isnt really a great problem. The worse of it is that I sent emails to 7900GTX vendors and all replied me that thay have had issues with this "hybrid" mobos...So my dreams were destroyed.....and I opted for what I posted before.

I remember that I want the CPU to play games and the advantage of a X2 AMD one is that I can use my actual 2 GB Ram. What I really dont know, given performance and price which is more convenient, a 4200 or a 4400

Thanks...


BTW, Asrock is an Asus brand and the 939Dual-SATA2 is a one of a kind AGP/PCI-E hybrid, unlike all the other hybrids, it is the only one that offers full AGP & PCI-E support.

I took a quick look at This 58 pages long 939Dual-SATA2 FAQ thread over at OCWB Forums and have'nt seen anything about problems with a 7900GTX, in fact, I've seen quite a few OCWB members with a 7900 class GPU and a 939Dual-SATA2 in their sig.

As for the CPU, consider the X2 3800+, it is cheaper and just as overclockable as the 4200+. If you really want 1MB L2 cache per core for cheap and even more overclocking headroom, go for an Opteron 165.
!