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A much needed upgrade...

Last response: in Systems
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December 23, 2009 6:09:33 AM

Hello,

I'm currently trying to find a few things that I can help to boost my computing power until I get my new rig this summer
http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx... - New Rig

But anyways.. right now my build is pretty much out of date x 10 I'm running on a old Compaq Presario SR1120NX with a Celeron D 2.66Ghz, 768mB of ram, GeForce 5500FX, MS-6577 v4.1 mobo, and an IDE 120gb HDD.. too lazy to check the model of the HDD pretty sure it's a Maxtor 5400 rpm drive.

So, all in all it's a pretty slow rig but it's been a pretty reliable PC for me.. I got it when I was 12 I believe, 17 now.. but I only play 2 or 3 games on it and I am in ownership of other games that I sure wish I could play without having to borrow my dads laptop.. CoD4 and L4D.

But anyway, here's what I'm looking at for a temporary upgrade...

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

For my vid card. Note* only have a PCI card, no PCI-Express or AGP.

http://dealnews.com/memory/prices/23/1GB.html

grab a stick of that, have a 512mb I have in there and a 256mb stick I grabbed out of my comp graveyard from workin on comps

And I might be looking at upgrading a CPU sooner or later but right now my budget it only around $100, don't really wanna spend a whole lot on this rig when I'm only gonna be using it for another 6 months or so.

If anybody could help me out then I would greatly appreciate it.

More about : needed upgrade

a b B Homebuilt system
December 23, 2009 7:27:25 AM

First, if you're getting an i7 for your new machine, please be sure to get a DirectX 11 video card, whether it's the HD 5xxx or whatever nvidia comes out with. Otherwise, you'll be throwing away that card well before your CPU.

Second, there is no reason for you to buy a 1GB memory stick for your existing machine. Your motherboard has two slots for RAM and it only supports a total of 1GB. So that would be a waste.

Third, it is probably not worth spending even $100 on that machine. Going to a PCI graphics card and adding 256MB of RAM is not going to give you a noticeable gain in performance. It will still completely suck if you try to play any recent game, and it will never play CoD or Left 4 Dead, period. The best that your current machine can do, fully upgraded, will struggle to even meet the minimum system specs for those games, and it's not going to be a playable experience. You're way better off toughing it out for 6 months and saving the money for a new machine.
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 23, 2009 1:24:35 PM

Gotta agree, you are going to spend $100, and not notice a thing, honestly.
Or, it may be a very tiny, slight improvement that is going to make you smile for about 2 hours, then you will be just as disgusted as your are right now, and you will have $100 less money for it. Word, believe me, been there done it with too many old systems for people just like this. It is simply not worth the time, the effort, or the money.
Save you money for your new rig.
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December 23, 2009 4:29:37 PM

So even with me upgrading the video card by however much, a 5500 to a 9400 it still wouldn't let me play L4D? L4D isn't really all that demanding the last I checked, I think that it requires a 6600. I understand me only having a PCI card is going to affect whatever card I put in there but I still wouldn't be able to play a game like L4D?
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 23, 2009 4:40:42 PM

Asdf Jer said:
So even with me upgrading the video card by however much, a 5500 to a 9400 it still wouldn't let me play L4D? L4D isn't really all that demanding the last I checked, I think that it requires a 6600. I understand me only having a PCI card is going to affect whatever card I put in there but I still wouldn't be able to play a game like L4D?


Yes, the data transfer rate of a PCI slot is basically going to prohibit you from doing anything that requires graphics processing to happen quickly. The card itself will be able to handle the processing, sure -- but the data will transfer from the card to the motherboard at a trickle. PCI isn't just slower than PCIe x16, it's about 50 times slower:

http://www.naplestech.com/shopcart/bus_speeds.asp

So for something that moves as quickly as a FPS, you'll probably be left with a horrible experience, if it even works at all.

Don't get me wrong -- PCI cards can be useful in certain specific situations. But mostly for applications where the primary need is to meet certain technical requirements but you can otherwise take your time. Gaming does not really fit into that category.
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December 23, 2009 4:43:54 PM

Alright, thanks for the help and I'm glad that I posted on here before just spending the cash. I was pretty sure that the bus speed would prohibit the card from running at its best but I didn't think that it was going to the that slow...

Thanks again,
Jer
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