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Mmm...what/when to upgrade

Last response: in Systems
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July 26, 2006 4:47:32 PM

Here's my current system:

Pentium 4 2.8 GHz
Mobo MSI 648 Max
1.5GB DDR RAM
ATI 9600 PRO (AGP)
17in CRT Monitor

I've been thinking about upgrading now for a long time and I think it’s finally time as my seriously aging system is showing its age as you can see above.
I have a bit of experience in building so I want to go down that route again. I'd like some comments from you guys about the various parts of a proposed system as I've been out of the 'latest technology' loop for a bit and am trying my hardest to get up to scratch on all the latest stuff. Also, is now a good time to do this or shall I wait a few months for any price drops. Anyway, here's what I'm thinking:

Mobo - £80ish ($150ish)
I've had a look at a few things already and I think I've decided upon another Intel Mobo. I can't really afford to get the top stuff but would like to have the technology for future upgrades. I've been looking at the Foxconn P9637AA 8KS2H as this leaves me space for a Core 2 Duo when they come down in price. Does this sound sensible? Plus its sub-£100 ($185).

CPU - £100/120ish ($185/220ish)
Although I would love to have one of the latest CPU's, realistically I can't afford one. What sort of thing would sit nicely on the Foxconn board until the Core 2 Duo's come down in price? Something around £100/120 ($185/220)?

RAM - £50ish ($95ish)
This is really quite a straight forward upgrade as I think I'll just get 1GB of DDR2 RAM from Crucial or something. I won't be able to reuse my current 1.5GB will I?

Graphics - £100/120ish ($185/220ish)
I am quite a keen gamer so this quite important. Again, I can't really spend the Earth as much as I'd like to so I'm thinking 7600GT PCI-e?

Monitor - £250ish ($470ish)
I think it’s finally time I stopped being tight and actually joined the 21st Century and bought a TFT Monitor. I'm thinking 19in so maybe the ViewSonic VX924 or the LG L1970H right? Again, money is tight so any cheaper alternatives would be greatly appreciated.

PSU - £20/30ish ($35/55ish)
I think my current PSU is ok although I am considering getting a new case so might just get a case/PSU combi. I think for the system I'm considering 550W should be ok right? Any suggestions on PSU/case combi's which also provide good cooling?

Thank you anyone that reply's to this in any capacity whatsoever as all help is great. My budget is around £500 ($925)but I'm fairly flexible. I just want a system with a good upgrade potential that will last me a good few years. Also, are there any bottleneck issues I need to worry about?

More about : mmm upgrade

July 26, 2006 5:28:53 PM

Hmmmm, lower than 200 for a mobo... Might want to try this one

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

although the P5W-DH would be better, its a little out of your price range.

CPU... you might be able to get the E6300 for around 260... we'll save a little on the monitor and get you the Conroe now...

Doubtful because DDR2 has different pins than regular DDR. I'm not sure what ram for around 100 bucks, haven't done much research in that. I'd say go with OCZ or Corsair... (I would strongly recommend 2 gigs, but your on a budget) Maybe this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...

Not sure about what graphics card you should get, haven't been keeping up with the lower end models, only the high end. But I personally like Nividia more than ATI, so your call on that. 7600GT sounds good from what I hear.

Monitor... hmmmm... 470 bucks is a lot for a monitor, even a 19 inch. I think around $350 is good enough for a decent monitor.

PSU, 550W should be fine, Conroe takes less power and your not doing any SLI or crazy OC'ing hopefully. If you want future-proofing however, I would suggest a 700W at least, and that will last you for a long time... like the GameXStream. But depends on if the computer industry is going to emphasive power or performance...
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July 27, 2006 10:58:10 AM

Thanks for the advice.

Is the Foxconn P9637AA 8KS2H not good then?

Are there any other suggestions for 19in monitors?
July 27, 2006 7:24:24 PM

Quote:
Is the Foxconn P9637AA 8KS2H not good then?


I've never been fond of anything by Foxconn.
July 27, 2006 7:31:08 PM

Quote:
Is the Foxconn P9637AA 8KS2H not good then?


I've never been fond of anything by Foxconn.

They make the iPod. Its the company that was accused of run child labour in China.
July 27, 2006 8:23:03 PM

$450 is tons of money for a monitor.

Pick up a Viewsonic VX922 for about $250 on newegg. Rated best 19" gaming LCD by Tom's.

Use money saved to upgrade what you had to 2GB Ram, Antec 500 or 550W PSU, and the E6300.
July 28, 2006 8:24:00 AM

The cheapest I can find the Vx922 in the UK, delivered, is £218 ($400)! I guess that just goes to show how much cheaper the US is than the UK.
!