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Noob Help

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December 2, 2009 8:16:36 PM

Hey guys, I have a Gateway that I love, it does what I want from playing World of Warcraft to playing music, etc etc. I would like to start upgrading it so that I can do bigger things like play COD: MW2 and WoW at extreme settings. Honestly, just looking to extend its usefulness for a bit longer and then I'm going to build my own PC from the ground up. Couple of questions:

Can I upgrade the power supply?

Keeping the existing motherboard, does anyone have a recommendation for a new processor? Or should I just forget about that part? I basically want to go from the POS thats in it to a little bit beefier model.

I think that about covers the questions I really had, thanks in advance for any help you can provide!

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December 2, 2009 8:19:42 PM

Computer specs and if possible model number. This will help us figure out if cpu upgrades are possible or not.

As for the PSU, yes you can upgrade it.
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December 2, 2009 8:26:23 PM

Fortunately, unlike the days of old where computer manufacturers liked to use proprietary components wherever possible, any computer from the last few years should have a normal ATX power supply you can easily exchange for a new one, without any connection or installation issues.

We would need to know the model number to give you more information about potential processor upgrades. Be advised you will either need to buy a retail boxed CPU, or also invest in a CPU Heatsink&Fan assembly, as I wouldn't trust the OEM cooling solution with a new processor.
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December 2, 2009 8:42:33 PM



Wow, sorry, I got ahead of myself and didn't put that up, lol.



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December 2, 2009 9:25:33 PM

adamvickers said:


Wow, sorry, I got ahead of myself and didn't put that up, lol.


This unfortunately leaves us with as many questions as answers. You have an AM2+ board, which will theoretically take any Phenom/Phenom II/Athlon II processor, with a couple bit caveats.

How much power can the motherboard handle? The Gateway motherboard likely won't be able to handle new 125W and 140W processors.

Will the BIOS support new processor? The Bios for the motherboard may simply not have support for Athlon II/Phenom II processors. This still leaves the option open for fast original Phenom processors, assuming the power isn't an issue.

Upgrading more than the RAM on a system like this often ends up being more trouble than its worth.
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December 3, 2009 7:31:46 PM

I'm always wary of upgrading CPU's on OEM boards. I'd say your best bet would be to pick up a GPU if you have a PCI-E slot on that motherboard first.

If you want to game on the cheap I'd suggest getting a used 8800GT. Probably won't even need to upgrade your PSU. I ran one for awhile on a worse system and it played most games fine at 1280 Resolution.

If your buying new I'd look at the radeon 5770 and GTX250. Again... you might get away without buying a new PSU.

If you do buy a new PSU make sure you get one that you can use again in your next system.

Any other upgrades I would defer and save your money until you can do a completely new build.
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December 3, 2009 7:34:47 PM

^+1
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!