First off hello to everyone, been on the forums here for a little while reading but this is my first post. This might be a bit confusing (maybe it won't).
I know this has been debated and debated and I have searched for a topic that matched mine but none were exactly like mine so here goes.
I am not at my computer by the way so I dont know part names and numbers off hand so i'll do my best. I have a Dell 4600 that I have added 512mb of ram too to make it 1gig, although I do believe it came with 512mb with 333mhz clock and I bought 512mb 400mhz. So correct me if i'm wrong but am i not running all 4 on 333mhz because the ram goes to the lowest installed? I have a single core 2.6 P4, 80 gig HD 7200rpm (I believe) 2mb cache. And I just bought a x1950Pro (AGP) with 512mb from a 9800SE.
Now for the question aside from the memory question above. I play World of Warcraft, Flight Simulator X, and Half-Life 2. I dont have the money to upgrade to a duel-core and pci-e system at the present time to I elected to get the x1950pro to try and improve my graphics in games. The first game I tried to run after installation was World of Warcraft, I was hoping to max out distance and detail to high where before I had most stuff middle of the road. I was kinda upset when I saw my FPS go below 25 sometimes, and the game would stutter in high detail areas like with my 9800. But not to bash the card too much in some areas I had upwards of 77 FPS which is more than playable, but this is with my settings at a middle of the road setting.
I then said maybe its just because I am playing over the internet although I have great latency with DSL. So, I tried Half-Life 2 and maxed all the resolutions out, put everything on max graphics and set AA up all the way as well, and the game ran wonderfuly! I was saying to myself, if it runs like this in Half-Life 2 why can't it in WoW? So, I thought once again it was just because I was playing over the internet and i'd try Flight Sim X.
With my 9800 in FSX I had graphics in the medium to medium high range and would get a hickup here and their when I was flying close to the ground and it had to render alot of environment. I left the graphics the same and started it up with my new x1950pro and was hoping for stellar performance at those settings. I was wrong, It was too jerky to even play and I was a bit confused. So, I guess i'm kinda at a loss.
Is it my processor that is holding me back, is it my memory? Only thing else I can think of is maybe my power supply which is a 350w antec that powered my 9800 fine and although they said the x1950pro needed 450w minimum that was with a (fully loaded system) mine is not.
I'm sure I will need to elaborate a bit more once I get home and I can give you some specs on my power supply considering the rails and such but. What has stumped me is the fact that Half-Life 2 is running great, whereas World of Warcraft is running fine but not what I expected, and FSX is almost unplayable on the settings I used for my 9800SE.
I appologize for being long winded, hope to hear some feedback soon.
Also, my 3DMark06 Scores were in the 3700 range, where most peoples were with my setup.
Thanks for responding, my expectations might be a tad high you are right their. But, i'm not sure why I would see a huge performance increase in Half-Life 2 and none in Flight Sim X. I'm not looking for Core Duo performance but playable none the less.
Still looking for some info though about my ram and if im truly running at the slower clock speeds becuase of the different types I have in. And secondly should I buy a bigger power supply, or HD.
Also forgot to add this but yes Track, I was wondering if my CPU was bottlenecking my gaming performance. I have also wondered if my HD and Ram was doing the same.
I know that this is a dumb question cause more ram is always better but does anyone think that upgrading to 2gig of 3200 ram with a faster HD would benifit me in the long run or will I see minimal differance in performance.