Hey, I just upgraded my graphics card (xfx nvidia geforce 8600 ddr2 512 mb graphics card) and that's allowed me to play Aion on Minimum but is still a bit choppy and completely unplayable in populated areas like city's.
Being your running vista, a second gig of ram would be nice since vista uses up almost all of the first gig. So your apps have to swap and use page files alot slowing things down.
Gaming specific, a better GPU and faster CPU could make big improvements. Issue though, you're upgrading a box system. Before we can recommend any GPU, we need to know what kind of PSU we're dealing with.
Something you could try for free is download clockgen. Its not a prefered way to OC a cpu, but being an HP, its your only option. See if you can get some more speed for free.
But before any upgrades that cost money can be offered up, there's some more info that's needed to make good suggestions. Please use the link in my sig to answer ALL of the requested info and we'll do what we can.
On a side note, when you're in populated areas, there a TONS of textures to load, so without an SSD, you're still going to experience slowdowns in high traffic areas because of HDD access speeds. No real getting around that, so don't go updating your HDD thinking you'll get loads of performance.
That mobo will take Athlon 64 x2 5600+ (89w max) which would be a good increase in speed over stock. ebay.co.uk shows them going for mid £30s to £50. If you can get it cheaper, then the 1gb ram will use maybe £20 or less. If you can add 2 gigs, might be worth the extra few £s at 25 or so.
For future consideration, a 4670 might be the best GPU you can upgrade to without having to worry about the PSU. You'll see a big performance increase with that after the ram.
Minimum requirements does not = Will yield good performance.
If you want good performance a new rig would be needed.
And an 8600gt is not what I'd consider a very good video card either.
Decent, but not something recommended for current gen games like Aion.
Considering the fact that you have a £60 budget, the 4gb kit seems a little unrealistic. Very few games run up and over 1gb of ram needed, so adding just 1 will do wonders for you. Adding 2 would get you more than you'll really use, so paying for 4 and having the extra just sitting there doesn't make a lot of sense to me. Not sure what vista home premium you have, but if its just the 32bit, you won't be able to access much more than 3 gb total anyway. So I'd say get just 2gbs for around £25, and use the other £20 for the GPU.
I've never used clockgen, so I can't be much help there. A quick google says it may be hit or miss. Probably a miss. I wouldn't mess with it if you're going to upgrade the cpu sooner than later.
Glad to help, I enjoy this too much probably. The wife is always yelling at me to get off that damn computer!
Like my tag says, never hurts to ask. I was there once too.
You can do it however you like. Adding a pair of sticks is prefered to adding a single stick so it stays in dual channel mode. You can buy 2x1gb kit and keep the old ones in there for 3gbs total. Or if you want to spend less, just buying 2x512 sticks and running all 4 of them will work well enough too. Find out what voltage your current memory is running at (should be listed in the bios) and buy ones that use the same voltage. Same timings would be nice too, those are the 5-5-5-18 numbers you see.
I Took a look at the mobo specs, and one post said it is the standard 5-5-5-18 1.8v. So stick with 1.8vs and you'll be fine. You can also get ram faster than the 5300 if its cheaper, but it will only run at the 5300 speed.