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$300 to spend, upgrade or new set up?

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September 28, 2009 4:14:25 PM

I have 300 to spend. I want just a Motherboard/processsor, Ram, and Video card. Can this be done? I play counter strike a lot. I thought maybe I should just upgrade my current system. What do you guys think. I'm at a crossroad because I don't know if it's worth to build a new system when I am just trying to play games like Counter strike source and doom 3 at like 60 fps.

Here is my set up from 04

Amd Xp 2500+
AN35N ultra Motherboard
512 Crosair ram. Don't konw speed
Ati Radeon 9600

The machine plays Source but just drags in high action sequences. Should I just keep it cheap and upgrade my ram to 2 or 3 gigs? That would cost me under 100. Or maybe get the fastest processor my rig will take? A burton 3200? Maybe a better GPU? Any advice would be a great help because I'm going to frys today and once im there I just want to but something.

thanks.

More about : 300 spend upgrade set

September 28, 2009 5:55:41 PM

Interesting choices. Thanks for your help. I know nothing of this motherboard. Dual core...do games like css use both cpu's. What kind of ram does it use and would it be better than trying to upgrade my unit?


obsidian86 said:
feeling ambitious?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

for $200

then you can save up for a psu and case/graphics card but the igp on the 785 should play c.s.s. easily

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a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2009 6:15:34 PM

it uses the ram i linked ddr2 ram.and if a game is dual core optimised it will use both cores but if its an older game it usually balances out the load on a both cores,your current setup is quite old and some newer games like nothing less then a nice dual core,and as older hardware is discontinued in production they become scarce and expensive
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2009 9:48:56 PM

Gulli said:
Get a $70 HD 4670 graphics card with that setup, you won't need a new power supply.

If he already has a 9600, is it really worth buying a 4670? I'm thinkiing there wont be enough difference to eb worth the money.

Many games dont use multiple cores. The advantage of a dual core is one core is totally dedicated to your game and the other can handle all the OS functions. Its an improvement over a single core of the same speed no matter what.
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2009 10:06:37 PM

dndhatcher said:
If he already has a 9600, is it really worth buying a 4670? I'm thinkiing there wont be enough difference to eb worth the money.


You're thinking of the Geforce 9600. The OP has the ATI Radeon 9600 which is MUCH older, not to mention it's AGP and not PCI-E.

+1 for the HD4670

-Wolf sends
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September 28, 2009 10:09:00 PM

dndhatcher said:
If he already has a 9600, is it really worth buying a 4670? I'm thinkiing there wont be enough difference to eb worth the money.

Many games dont use multiple cores. The advantage of a dual core is one core is totally dedicated to your game and the other can handle all the OS functions. Its an improvement over a single core of the same speed no matter what.


It's a Radeon 9600 (from 2003!), not a Geforce 9600GT, so of course a HD 4670 is worth it.

BTW, get more RAM as well.
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 28, 2009 10:15:35 PM

Gulli said:
It's a Radeon 9600 (from 2003!), not a Geforce 9600GT, so of course a HD 4670 is worth it.

BTW, get more RAM as well.
My bad. :pt1cable: 
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September 29, 2009 12:12:47 AM

Or you could get a Quad core an even save money.

Athlon II X4 620 + cheap mobo - $119
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

4 GB PNY RAM - $43
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That will cost you $162 for a faster setup. You loose some ability to upgrade because it uses socket AM2+ and DDR2 memory, but judjing by your current setup, you don't seem to upgrade much anyway.

If you want to spend more for a better ECS mobo, these combos are $15-20 more:

$139
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

$135
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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September 29, 2009 8:40:52 AM

paranoidmage said:
Or you could get a Quad core an even save money.

Athlon II X4 620 + cheap mobo - $119
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

4 GB PNY RAM - $43
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That will cost you $162 for a faster setup. You loose some ability to upgrade because it uses socket AM2+ and DDR2 memory, but judjing by your current setup, you don't seem to upgrade much anyway.

If you want to spend more for a better ECS mobo, these combos are $15-20 more:

$139
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

$135
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...



And then he'd still be stuck with a 2003 Radeon 9600, yeah, great thinking there... I'm sure a quadcore plus a Radeon 9600 will make an awesome gaming machine (I'm being sarcastic here, if you didn't figure that out already.)
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September 29, 2009 1:43:33 PM

Well he would have $138 left over for the GPU. It beats the $100 he would have left over if he got a Athlon II X2 240 + mobo + RAM for $200.

You can get this MSI 4850 512MB for $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's $242 for your entire upgrade, and you'll get a very powerful system.
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2009 3:17:10 PM

i wouldn he need a new power supply to run a 4850?
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September 29, 2009 4:33:37 PM

paranoidmage said:
Well he would have $138 left over for the GPU. It beats the $100 he would have left over if he got a Athlon II X2 240 + mobo + RAM for $200.

You can get this MSI 4850 512MB for $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's $242 for your entire upgrade, and you'll get a very powerful system.


Then he could get an OCZ Stealthxstream 400W power supply to power the rig and stay under $300...
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a b B Homebuilt system
September 29, 2009 4:57:46 PM

obsidian86 said:
i wouldn he need a new power supply to run a 4850?


More than likely, yes, you would need a new power supply for the HD4850.

-Wolf sends
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September 30, 2009 11:40:34 PM

Gulli said:
Why the extra hassle with a PCI-E connector and still slightly less performance than with the 4670?


Agreed. Get a 4670 and you won't need to spend any money on a better PSU. The extra performance with a better card isn't worth it when you have to add $50 or more for a PSU.

Edit: Or you could get this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

But we still don't know what power supply to have and whether or not it can handle a better card.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2009 3:52:54 AM

I was under the impression 4670=9600gso for performance roughly. The reason I linked that is b/c if you count the rebate, it shaves 20 bucks from final cost. If the PSU can handle it.
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October 1, 2009 1:08:21 PM

If the $300 budget still stands I recommend to either go cheap by buying only a HD 4670 for $70, or go the expensive route (still sub $300 though) to crush your current setup:

RAM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $63

CPU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $66 (can easily be overclocked to 3.2ghz)

PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $40

Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $45

Graphics Card: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $85

Total: $299
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2009 1:48:58 PM

I can actually agree with Gulli's setup. If gaming, consider spending 10 bucks more and get a 4850.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2009 1:53:28 PM

^ You can't get much cheaper than that!. haha. way to get a dollar under budget.... well you still need shipping.

To OP... Are you at all flexible on the $300 mark? My opinion is this.... if you aren't flexible on the $300 mark and NEED something NOW, then Gulli has a great list that will maximize your budget. However, for $500 or $600 you could get a MUCH better system than what your could get with $300.

What items DO you have in your current system that you can reuse? What kind of case, drives (HD and optical), PSU, etc? Specs are great, links are better. Whatever you do, do not put anymore money into your current board, it is a waste.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 1, 2009 1:55:21 PM

Btw, the 4830 should be a great card tho. Props to Gulli on the pricing.
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October 4, 2009 2:15:47 PM

jay2tall said:
^ You can't get much cheaper than that!. haha. way to get a dollar under budget.... well you still need shipping.

To OP... Are you at all flexible on the $300 mark? My opinion is this.... if you aren't flexible on the $300 mark and NEED something NOW, then Gulli has a great list that will maximize your budget. However, for $500 or $600 you could get a MUCH better system than what your could get with $300.

What items DO you have in your current system that you can reuse? What kind of case, drives (HD and optical), PSU, etc? Specs are great, links are better. Whatever you do, do not put anymore money into your current board, it is a waste.


osc82 said:
I have 300 to spend...I am just trying to play games like Counter strike source and doom 3 at like 60 fps.


He doesn't need an amazing system, which is why I think a 620 + mobo + ram + 4670 is a good deal that keeps him under budget and gets the job done. an Athlon II X2 420 isn't bad either. It saves about $10, but wouldn't play newer games as well if you want to get into them
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October 4, 2009 2:24:10 PM

paranoidmage said:
He doesn't need an amazing system, which is why I think a 620 + mobo + ram + 4670 is a good deal that keeps him under budget and gets the job done. an Athlon II X2 420 isn't bad either. It saves about $10, but wouldn't play newer games as well if you want to get into them


No way you can get that (and a PSU) for under $300.
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October 4, 2009 3:28:03 PM

You wouldn't need an extra PSU with the 4670

and the 620 + mobo combo for $120 is no longer available.

CPU:
Athlon II X4 620 + mobo - $140
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductCombos.aspx?Item=N...
OR
Athlon II X2 240 + mobo - $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

GPU:
MSI 4850 512MB+ 400 W PSU + free Wheelman game - $125
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR
Asus 4670 1GB + free Alone in the Dark game - $55

RAM:
CORSAIR 2 x 2GB DDR2 800 - $50

It's a tougher CPU decision now that the $120 X4 620 + mobo combo is gone. The X2 240 is still a fast dual core. I suggest getting the 4670, because moving up to a 4850 and getting a PSU isn't worth $70 more.
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October 4, 2009 3:45:56 PM

paranoidmage said:
You wouldn't need an extra PSU with the 4670

and the 620 + mobo combo for $120 is no longer available.

CPU:
Athlon II X4 620 + mobo - $140
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductCombos.aspx?Item=N...
OR
Athlon II X2 240 + mobo - $100
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...

GPU:
MSI 4850 512MB+ 400 W PSU + free Wheelman game - $125
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
OR
Asus 4670 1GB + free Alone in the Dark game - $55

RAM:
CORSAIR 2 x 2GB DDR2 800 - $50

It's a tougher CPU decision now that the $120 X4 620 + mobo combo is gone. The X2 240 is still a fast dual core. I suggest getting the 4670, because moving up to a 4850 and getting a PSU isn't worth $70 more.


RAM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $50

CPU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $63 (can easily be overclocked to 3.0ghz)

PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $40

Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $45

Graphics Card: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $100

Total: $298

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October 5, 2009 12:10:04 AM

That GPU has a mail in rebate, so it's $85. That brings the total down to $283 for that build.
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October 5, 2009 2:30:27 AM

paranoidmage said:
That GPU has a mail in rebate, so it's $85. That brings the total down to $283 for that build.


Yes, buy it now, before the rebates are gone.
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October 5, 2009 3:02:08 AM

Gulli

Do you realize you mixed an AM3 CPU with an AM2/AM2+ mobo?
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 5, 2009 3:03:54 AM

Its been 5 days since the OP last posted. Probably he'll never see most of the thread.
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October 5, 2009 3:29:12 AM

I didn't see where that mobo was "AM3 ready". Maybe I missed it.
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October 5, 2009 4:03:57 AM

It doesn't need to be "AM3 ready". All current AM3 CPUs work in socket AM2+.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 5, 2009 5:39:09 AM

Lol. They should be assuming bios updates are available as am3 chips have built in ddr2 and ddr3 memory controllers.
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 5, 2009 1:18:45 PM

Gulli said:
Yes, your point being? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socket_AM3



ASRock Motherboard specs

Quote:
If you use AM3 / AM2+ CPU on AM2 chipset motherboard, the system bus speed will downgrade from HT3.0 (5200 MT/s) to HT1.0 (2000 MT/s), but the CPU frequency will not be influenced.


Just wondering how limiting this would be.

-Wolf ponders
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a b B Homebuilt system
October 5, 2009 9:35:16 PM

One of my "AM3 ready" boards says that too. But I got it for cheap on craigslist as simply an AM2 board and won't bother with anything more than that in it.
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October 6, 2009 2:16:50 AM

That's because the AM2+ boards depend on a bios update to make them "AM3 ready".
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October 13, 2009 4:23:04 PM

Hey guys thanks for the advice everyone. Well all of you have great ideas but now I am a little confused. I did buy ram for 70 bucks at fries. You would figure ddr ram would be cheaper now. That helped my os run way better but my games run better but not smooth enough for me to be good at them. CS Source ranges from 15fps to 70.... crazy. I wonder if it's because of my slow ass cpu. I know if I upgraded to burton I would get more fps because Source is cpu hungry. Anyway, so here is my complete set up again for the person that asked what other parts I had.

Windows Vista Ultimate
Nvdia An35N Ultra V1.1 socket A
Athlon xp 2500
ATI Radeon 9600xt
2 gigs Kingston DDR
Creative Xfi Xtreme Gamer
DvD CD R Drive
400 wat psu

So the question remains. Should I upgrade to a whole new set up? Or spend like on a Am3 or 775 board. If I had money I would get an I 7. I like the 4850 because I want to play some new games but I wonder if it's worth buying yet another agp cards even the the slot is dead. I have no looked closely at the set ups you guys suggested but they seem viable options. I will research them now and be back with yall shorly. Thanks!
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October 13, 2009 4:46:01 PM

paranoidmage said:
Well he would have $138 left over for the GPU. It beats the $100 he would have left over if he got a Athlon II X2 240 + mobo + RAM for $200.

You can get this MSI 4850 512MB for $80
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

That's $242 for your entire upgrade, and you'll get a very powerful system.


This seems good, I don't know how well it compares to a 775 motherboard set up. But i like this suggestion
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October 13, 2009 4:56:19 PM

Gulli said:
If the $300 budget still stands I recommend to either go cheap by buying only a HD 4670 for $70, or go the expensive route (still sub $300 though) to crush your current setup:

RAM: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $63

CPU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $66 (can easily be overclocked to 3.2ghz)

PSU: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $40

Mobo: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $45

Graphics Card: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... $85

Total: $299



Interesting, so far im swaying towards this.
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!