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Upgrading gaming system

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June 24, 2009 5:49:48 PM

Hi, I'm looking to upgrade my current gaming PC, I'm currently using a Core2duo e6300, Asus P5b motherboard, Nvidia 8800GTX, 2x2gig DDR kingston ram, 300gig HD (random WD thing), 520watt cooler master real power PSU, 22" LG Flatron (1680x1050 res) and a few other bits and bobs. I got a little less then $1000 to spend (700euros)

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: A.S.A.P.

BUDGET RANGE: $1000/700euros

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Used mostly for gaming, watching some movies.

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: Don't need a keyboard, mouse, speakers, monitor(i think)

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Since I'm Dutch, I normally go to http://www.perfect-systems.nl, but since its got quite a wide selection, I dont mind getting advice from stuff on Newegg.com or anything else.

PARTS PREFERENCES: Only thing I'm quite certain of is really an Antec 900-2 gaming case.

OVERCLOCKING: No

SLI OR CROSSFIRE: Maybe

MONITOR RESOLUTION: 1680x1050

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: -

I'm just quite a noob to upgrading a PC or just getting parts in general so I would really like some advice on how to boost my system the best with the available budget. I've looked around quite alot but im having alot of difficulty deciding how to boost my performance the most. So some advice would be much appreciated :) 
June 24, 2009 9:33:29 PM

Assuming 700 euro can buy the same thing 1000 USD can buy, you can pretty much gut and replace the whole thing.

If you're just wanting to upgrade, which parts? If you replace the CPU, you have to make sure the current mobo supports it. Current mobo have sli\crossfire or just one slot?

What you have now isn't terrible. Are you open to AMD or wanting to stick with Intel?
June 24, 2009 10:42:01 PM

I don't mind stepping over to AMD at all, I'm just having a hard time figuring out what to replace everything (or just some parts) with to get the maximum performance allowed with my budget.

My current motherboard does not support SLI afaik. One of the main things I'm looking at for upgrading is my processor and get a bigger and faster hard disk, but with the budget I got I should indeed be able to crank a few more pieces up abit. It's just really hard for me to make a choice out of all the available options, even having looked through all the charts and reviews for most of my options, I'm struggling to find the most suited combination to get within my budget.
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June 25, 2009 12:45:05 AM

Personally i'd chuck a Quad Core Penryn, say a Q9550. And take a look at a GTX275 or similar, perhaps beefier if you really want too.

Also i'd wait a little longer on the hard disk, and see where the price go for SSD. If you really want a larger drive now, just grab a750gb-1tb for under $100.

You motherboard should support the penryn line of processors, but most likely with a BIOS update. Just make sure to update the sucker BEFORE plugging in the new CPU.
June 25, 2009 8:01:58 AM

Would a be worth spending a little bit more money and getting an Intel i920? And if so, what would the best motherboard/memory be for using that?

What I'm looking at getting atm is the following:

Case: Antec Nine hundred (or maybe Nine hundred-two)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129021

PSU: Corsair 650 TX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005&Tpk=corsair%20650

Graphics Card: Asus ENGTX275 896mb
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121313&Tpk=enGTX275

Hard disk: Simple WD 640gig HD
June 25, 2009 8:30:32 AM

get an i7 CPU, X58 mobo and 4GB of ram, that should be about 500-600 euro's, then with the spare cash, get a PCP&C 750w PSU and a second 8800GTX.

all of that comes to 655 euro's on OCUK but the 8800GTX is 'B grade'.
June 25, 2009 4:32:10 PM

"get an i7 CPU, X58 mobo and 4GB of ram, that should be about 500-600 euro's, then with the spare cash, get a PCP&C 750w PSU and a second 8800GTX.

all of that comes to 655 euro's on OCUK but the 8800GTX is 'B grade'. "

Just so you don't confuse him and you aren't confused yourself, he can't get 4Gb of RAM with an X58 setup. The boards are tri channel so you'd have to get either 3Gb or 6Gb.
June 25, 2009 4:48:21 PM

i still dont get why people keep saying 4GB of RAM for the i7. the tiniest amount of research will show you that its boards support trichannel
June 25, 2009 5:26:05 PM

^ sorry, was a bit sleepy at the time, I meant 6GB.
June 25, 2009 5:37:16 PM

what motherboard would you guys sugest getting with an Intel I7 920, preferably one with the possibility of getting an SLI setup in the future?
June 25, 2009 5:41:21 PM

a P6T is generally the best option, it's cheap, has CF and SLI support, and most of the time you don't need the features of the more expensive boards.
June 25, 2009 6:31:45 PM

Allright, this is what I'm most likely going to be getting for now:

Processor: Intel I7 920
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115202

Mobo: Asus P6T
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131359R

PSU: Corsair TX 650watt
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139005

Case: Antec nine hundred-two
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129058

Hard disk:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136319

Memory: OCZ Gold 2x3GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227365

I'll look at replacing the graphics card next month by getting a Geforce 275GTX or something like that.
Just a couple of questions;
How hard is it to install the components into the case? Is it doable for someone with not that much experience building up his own pc? All I ever did so far was build in a new PSU into my old computer.

And is the Corsair 650watt PSU enough to keep everything going when I put in a new video card like a 275GTX?

Final question, should I be looking at placing in another fan into the case? I was guessing that the four fans that are in the Antec Nine hundred-two should be keeping it cool enough.

Thanks for all the help.

June 25, 2009 9:07:21 PM

As far as building, there are guides all over the internet to help. To me, the hardest part was getting all the wiring for the case connected properly on the mobo, but the mobo will come with a guide.

For the PSU, I'd get the Corsair 750 instead of the 650, just to be safe for if you do SLI. Don't have any idea on the case fans in that case, but Antec usually builds nice cases.
June 25, 2009 11:38:23 PM

I personally think it's a huge waste of cash for you to buy an i7. You already have a motherboard and ram that'll support a penryn. Which happen to game very similar to the i7. Also upgrading to an i7 platform without upgrading the GPU is even worse, there will be minimal game performance increase.

You best bet is, like i stated before. Is a Quad Core Penryn, aka Q9550, a 650w solid PSU. And yes 650watts is plenty for any two card SLI system. And a new graphics card, aka GTX 275.

With my build you're only purchasing 5 items including your case and hard drive. An i7 platform will require and expensive motherboard and and RAM on top of that costing an extra of at least 350 canadian, or about 216 euro. All without notable gaming performance changes.
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