I built my system almost a year and a half ago. I have a Dell 3007FPW so I play most games at 2560 x 1600 and I'm looking to get some better performance but I'm not ready to upgrade the whole system. Currently I'm running the following.
MOBO: Asus P5N-E 650i
CASE: Antec P180
GPU: BFG 8800GTX
PSU: PC Power and Cooling 750 Quad Silencer
RAM: 2 Gigs Corsair XMS2
Will upgrading the GPU or the CPU benefit me more? What should I upgade to? Will upgrading to 4 gigs of ram make a big difference?
Until next month the 8800 GTX is still the fastest at your resolution in most games.
You can use RivaTuner to get some more performance out of it if you would like.
You would benefit most from overclocking your E6400. As long as Dell has not locked overclocking in your BIOS, you should be able to break 3GHz easily to match any currently available CPU for performance. As it is a Dell Mb, it will be a little iffy as far as CPU upgrades go. You will probably want to contact Dell support for a list of supported CPU's.
Upgrading to 4Gb ram will give you a boost but not a major one. With the cost of RAM so low, it wouldn't hurt to upgrade it.
I went from 2 8800GT's in SLI and a E6300 to 1 8800GT and a E8400 and my 3DMark scores went up (I also changed my motherboard from a 680i to a X48). Your system looks good but your weak link is your CPU and I would suggest upgrading that. Your motherboard supports the 45nm dual cores so I would suggest either the E8400 or E8500.
For everyone recommending CPU upgrades, oveclocking etc. let it be said that on your Dell, you won't be able to overclock anything and CPU upgrades can be very iffy. Best contact Dell to find if you can upgrade the CPU before you buy one that will not work on your motherboard. Just because the chipset supports a newer processor does not mean Dell has written support for it into the BIOS. Dell doesn't want you upgrading, they want you buying new systems.
I guess the Dell monitor must have caused some confusion. My monitor is Dell. My system is completely built by me. Nothing in it is Dell. I had a feeling it might have been my CPU. I will take a look at the E8400 or E8500 and see if I can budget that. Thanks for the input.
Depending on your budget, you should get a new processor. If you have a decent amount of money you should definitely go for the E8400 or E8500, they are great performers even when they aren't overclocked. If you are limited to say, 130$, the E7200 is also a wonderful processor as well. Both of those processors can be overclocked very easily, and it would improve performance substantially.
there is only 1 answer. sli and oc. oc will keep u from bottlenecking sli performance. at ur resolution a ned cpu w/o a graphics card upgrade wont give u more frames, unless the game is cpu bound at 2560*1600. preposterous!
1. Upgrade your ram to 4GB, regardless of OS. If you are running a 64 bit OS, you could take it up to 8GB, however, the extra 4GB will give diminshing returns compared to the first upgrade.
2. Video upgrade, I would consider waiting another month or so with new board releases coming from both ATI and nVidia.