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Upgrade or Completely new Rig?

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June 4, 2006 3:03:01 AM

Should I upgrade or get a new rig entirely? I figure its about $350 VS $1400. I am open to suggestions for both the upgrade and new rig. If I get a new rig, I will not salvage anything from the old one as it will be given to a family member.

Current Rig
AMD Athlon64 3200+ Socket 754
MSI K8N Neo Platinum Motherboard
2x512 (1 GB) GEIL 184-pin DDR RAM
Radeon 9800 Pro
Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2ZS
1x80 GB Western Digital IDE HDD
1x250 GB Western Digital IDE HDD
NEC CD/DVD Burner
Antec TruePower 400W PSU

Upgrade
Geforce 7800GS AGP
1 more GB of RAM

OR

New Rig

A nice dual core AMD proc socket AM2
MSI or Asus mobo (whichever supports SATA RAID, better and has more features)
Any PCI-E Video Card that is > 9800 PRO
2 GB of RAM
2x200 or 250 GB 7200 RPM HDDs, SATA, to be run in RAID 0
Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi
Another NEC burner, unless I can find a nice SATA optical drive
Antec or some quality brand PSU 500W
Cannot settle on case yet


I will be making this rig over the summer, if I choose to do so. I just really need help choosing whether to upgrade or get a new rig entirely. Thanks in advance.

More about : upgrade completely rig

June 4, 2006 3:16:19 AM

Get new, but if you want high speeds and quality RIGHT now, don't go AM2. I'd wait till new boards out by DFI for AM2. I know that the Asus 590 Sli board is awesome, but it also has lots of problems. So yeah, wait for AM2. I'd go 939, with a DFI Lanparty Ultra-D, and a Opty 165 or 170. OC to 2.6. Vid card is your choice, 7900 GT/X or 1900XTX. Really your choice completely their. Also, if your going to do RAID, don't do it half assed and do RAID 0, do RAID 5. Much better and faster. Otherwise, everything looks ship shape.

DDay
June 4, 2006 5:36:07 AM

Alright, I think if it ends up being a new rig, I'm probably going to dump 1900 or so at most on it... Doubt I want liquid cooling. If it runs me 1600-1800 or so with monitor included in the price, thats OK.

Anyway, on top of the above, I'm going to continue running a dual monitor system, but I'll run a vx922 (which I already have) and the other viewsonic 20.1" widescreen LCD they have that looks about the same as the vx922. Yes, monitor looks matter, I want 2 that match in style.

If I run at RAID 5 system, I'll need at least 3 drives or 4, even. So, if I get, lets say, 4 drives, then why not just go RAID 0+1 rather than RAID 5. And I've read many times that the new Raptors aren't worth it, so I'll skimp there. I would like to make the jump to SATA at least, even if I don't end up running a RAID array. Phooey on IDE. I just wish more SATA optical drives were released.

So you see, if I get a new rig, I'm going all out, no skimping.

So it is literally $330 to delay getting a new rig by 1 year, or paying for PCI-E, SATA, DDR2, and socket AM2 now for upgradeability I don't have because I was nearsighted and didn't shell out the extra 50 bucks for a socket 939 system.
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June 4, 2006 5:52:20 AM

Sorry to post back to back, but I must specify:

Acoustics matter as I must live in the same room as this rig (I'm in college).

Right now, I have 2x80mm fans and 1x120mm fan with fans on my PSU. The loudest being my Gigabyte Orb cooler with adjustable fan level. It and the 80s are still loud, though. Also, if it can be helped, I don't want any lights. I've noticed the last couple of years, the lights are annoying at night, because I leave it on. Going for powaaaa and not lights or shiny things.

I do everything on it, CD rips, watch DVDs, watch video files, convert media files, play games (RTS, FPS, etc), internet everything, multitask out the ying yang because I use dual-monitors (once you go dual monitors, you never go back). I also run my Klipsch Promedia 5.1s quite well with that 2ZS, thus needing the x-fi in the next rig.
June 4, 2006 6:18:08 AM

Quote:
Another NEC burner, unless I can find a nice SATA optical drive


I don't see the advantage of SATA on an optical. Have the specs improved recently?
June 4, 2006 9:42:39 AM

if you upgrade to a 7800gs it will play most of the games today....
June 4, 2006 11:27:11 AM

Hmm, interesting choice here. Lemme give you my spin on things...

Upgrading your current rig would certainly be the cheaper option, but how long would you keep it that way without wanting to upgrade again? In this case, I would say its a far better option to build a new rig frm scratch, and take it from there.

AM2... I dunno yet, I'm still not 100% convinced of its need for now. Personally, I would go for 939 parts, sure they're last gen, but they've had almost all the kinks worked out, andofer great performance to boot. Stick an X2 in there, an SLI setup, and 2GB RAM, and you've got yourself a tasty rig that'll last you for a while to come. Also, with regards to noise, get an Arctic Freezer 64 Pro cooler. Cool, quiet, and not expensive.

Its up to you which platform you go for in the end. Whatever you choose, have fun building it :) 
June 4, 2006 12:04:29 PM

For $1900 you're not going to want to have to buy a new board, processor and RAM if you want to upgrade. I'd go with AM2, regardless of any minor bugs (of which I'm not aware anyway). Otherwise it'll have to be a totally new system if you want to upgrade.
June 4, 2006 12:52:34 PM

Fair point, but the way I see it, if you get a top quality 939 system now it should easily last you a good few years. After that, you can take a look and see who makes the best AM2 boards, and what else AMD has to offer in its roadmaps.

AM2 might be where everything is going now, but it would still be daft to pass up on 939. Its not going anywhere just yet, and the prices will slowly fall over time, making it ideal for those of us who want to upgrade but not to bleeding edge levels.

Again, its up to Tyr86 on this one. Bleeding egde (mostly bleeding from the wallet) or established and mature technologies. Your call.
June 4, 2006 4:33:42 PM

Well the reason I ask now is because I need to know much money I need to allocate for this. I won't be making this rig tomorrow, I'll be making it in late July. Will there be a better generation of socket AM2 boards by then?

I just don't want to repeat what I did with my current rig by limiting myself with socket 754.

Like I said, if I upgrade, it'll just delay getting a new rig by 1 or 1 1/2 years.
June 4, 2006 5:04:49 PM

I'd upgrade and stash the rest of the cash away for a new rig in a year / 18 months. You could well be able to re-use the RAM and hopefulyl a high-level AGP graphics card like that will have a reasonable re-sale value.
June 5, 2006 1:22:14 AM

Will Nvidia or ATI release something on the 7800's performance plane that will have dual DVI ports?
June 5, 2006 8:22:27 PM

Any advice/help, please? :cry: 
June 5, 2006 8:51:41 PM

well, AGP is not dead, just a dead end. I wouldn't upgrade nor get a new rig NOW. Wait a few months, maybe lateish summer and then we'll see maybe some more CPU's, etc., and especially some better AM2 motherboards.

On your last question, you are referring to AGP, correct? Because most PCI-e x16 card usually have two DVI ports.

~Ibrahim~
June 5, 2006 9:01:07 PM

Well I'll be making my purchases at the end of July or early August. I'm asking now because I need to allocate funds for whatever path I choose.

Yes, sorry, I am talking about AGP. I plan on running 2 LCD monitors (preferably both in DVI, but one can be run in VGA) and I run a DVI cable from my second PCI video card to my LCD TV so I can watch movies on put video on there when I want to.
June 5, 2006 9:17:38 PM

All right, save maybe to $1200 total....

Not that many AGP cards will have dual-dvi, newer AGP ones will, though.

~Ibrahim~
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