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Upgrade or Rebuild?

Last response: in Systems
September 1, 2009 12:00:50 PM

I currently have:

Gallatin P4 3.4Ghz
GA-8AENXP-D mainboard
2Ghz 266 DDR2
Geforce 8800GT

...and it runs like ass. I play World of Warcraft quite a lot, and have to run it on very low settings, and it STILL sucks. Not even bothering with Crysis, etc, at the moment.

So I was thinking that I should get some more memory, and maybe that would help. But looking on google I see that I could probably get a new board/processor/memory quite cheaply, that would run far better than my ancient Gallatin. Graphics card will be ok I think. Or would more memory suit my purposes (and a possibly idiotic question, would 800Mhz memory be usable on the board, I know it would not run at that speed if so, finding it difficult to find older sticks).

My budget is pathetic, I am a single Mum of two, and my ex build this machine - the last one I build was a Socket A board!

Thanks in advance :) 

More about : upgrade rebuild

September 1, 2009 3:19:40 PM


I also had the same question. "Should I upgrade or build?" It really depends on how much you would like to get out of the gaming experience... Personally, I would build a NEW pc.. If you haven't built a new computer before I would keep this one as a reference, save up a little money, Google a few parts, post back to Tom's Hardware, and by then you can have a good gaming rig. But, again, I would build new.
September 1, 2009 5:05:33 PM

if your rig can't run WoW (a game that does not demand that much from the rig), then it is probably time to think re-build. I think you can re-use the GOU, but that is probably it.

If your budget stinks, you may be out of luck, but the DIY build on TomsHardware is less than $600 (if I remember correctly), plus somewhere on here there was a great post (that should have been stickied, but wasn't) about builds with various budgets. The cheap one was around $500 i think. You could start there then look at downgrading the pieces you don't care as much about.

(Tomshardware forums search SUCKS - I can't find the thread about various builds.)
Related resources
a b B Homebuilt system
a b Ý World of Warcraft
a b } Memory
September 1, 2009 5:37:07 PM

Whats the budget and current monitor resolution? If you keep your current GPU you can upgrade the processor in tecmo's bargain build.

mitofi its linked to in proximons sticky so it wont get lost.
a b B Homebuilt system
a b } Memory
September 1, 2009 5:57:44 PM

Looking at the support list your motherboard can't use a faster CPU than what it already has. Depending on your budget you may want to think about going AM3 as you can get an 785G AM3 board, an Athon II X2, and some DDR3 for a decent price and such an upgrade would blow the doors off your old Pentium 4.
September 1, 2009 6:07:34 PM

Thank for your replies :)  I think it has to be a new machine, and the Athlon II X2 is definitely within my budget.

Out with the old, in with the new(ish) I say. Same goes for the ex ;)  although I think a new PC rather than a replacement will suffice!

Will look for peripherals then repost for advice on building the thing, thanks again.
September 2, 2009 9:13:33 AM

Had a look into a Core 2 etc but I think I'll go with the Athlon idea, more in my budget and will leave money spare to save for a new graphics card.


Athlon XII X2 3GHz
Asus AM3 (M4A785TD-V EVO)
Western Digital 320GB Scorpio 5400RPM SATA-300 8MB 2.5"? (might grab another smaller one too though, don't like having everything on one drive)
Crucial 4GBKIT (2GBx2) 240PIN DDR3 PC3-8500 NON ECC? (can't afford more than 4Gb at the moment it appears)
FX GeForce GTX 260 660MHz 896MB? maybe, doesn't seem that expensive, maybe another month of saving

No idea what cooling etc, will search other threads and figure it out. Will grab Windows 7 in October.

Currently have two HP LP1965 running at 1280x1024, but hoping to get a new television in the lounge in the Jan sales after which I'll be using a Samsung T220HD 22" as main screen (plus one of the HP's to write on), but for the moment will have to stick with these.

Does this sound ok?
a b B Homebuilt system
a b Ý World of Warcraft
a b } Memory
September 2, 2009 2:55:18 PM

Link to your parts if you can, if you are buying from newegg i know there used to be some combos with some of those but the end of the month screwed it up so i have to go looking again.

The amount of ram is less important than the speed and timings, try to get some with CL7.

I would suggest a standard desktop hard drive, it will be faster and probably about the same price.
a b B Homebuilt system
September 2, 2009 3:23:40 PM

your 8800gt is still an ok card you could use that for a while and ati cards tendto be cheaper then their nvidia counterparts and get a quality psu