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Upgrade for a 3 year old system

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January 20, 2010 4:48:39 PM

Hi guys. Here's what I'm currently running:

Thermaltake Silver Armor
eVGA 680i
Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 @ 2.4GHz
Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro
Corsair TWINX 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR2 800MHz
BFG 8800GTXOC
2 x WD Caviar 250GB
1 x Seagate Barracuda 750GB
Plextor PX-755SA
Epsilon FSP FX700

Now, its been showing me some good stuff for 3 years. I still don't get much lag on most games if I turn them down just a bit. I've been really impressed. But I'm starting to feel like stepping up a bit, maybe tide myself over for another 12-18 months, and continue to give myself the ability to game the way I'm used to.

The upgrades I was looking at were adding another 2 gigs of ram:
the same module I currently have, $66.99 @ newegg.ca

and grabbing another BFG 8800GTXOC and going to SLI:
BFG 8800GTXOC, buy now $180.54 @ ebay.ca

Now, I game at 1680x1050, the graphics card charts show that I'll be pretty baller with that graphics setup. I realize my CPU will be the bottleneck (if one exists), but I can live with that. It's still a very capable CPU according to the 2008 Q3 charts.

I am left with two questions:
1) Will my PSU be enough to run the SLI? Since it only has 2 6-pin cables, I will need to plug two adapters to my molex cables.
2) Is it worth it?

If I don't need to touch the PSU, I think it will be a good deal, but if I have to shell out 200 bones for a new PSU, suddenly I'm pushing a 450 dollar upgrade and maybe it isn't so worth it anymore.

Thanks for any insight you guys can provide!

More about : upgrade year system

a b B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 5:19:31 PM

$180 seems expensive for an outdated 8800. You might consider just replacing the 8800 with a card you can then move into a new motherboard when you decide to take that step. Right now the choices would be a 5770 which is 50% faster than the 8800 and costs about $170 new or a 5850 at $300 which will be at least as fast as two 8800s in SLI.
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January 20, 2010 5:27:04 PM

Your best 2 options in my opinion are to overclock the E6600 to 3.0 or more (which you can EASILY get with the ACF7P) and buy a 5850.

Overclocking it is the cheapest/easiest upgrade

The 5850 will last you more than 12-18 months and it will run fine on an E6600 3.0+

Don't worry about the extra RAM, especially if you're running a 32-bit operating system, you won't see that much of an increase in performance as opposed to the better video card.

If you do all this, you will NOT have to worry about the power supply handling, it'll be able to handle a single 5850 & an E6600 OC no sweat.

This, my friend, will last you 12-18 months longer and you'll have a good video card when you upgrade the motherboard/CPU/RAM in the future.
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January 20, 2010 5:47:25 PM

One question though: is the 5850 pci-e 2.0? I'm going to be limited to the pci-e 1.
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January 20, 2010 5:48:55 PM

there will be no problem with running a PCI-E video card on a motherboard that only supports PCI-E 1.1, it is backwards compatible.
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January 20, 2010 5:52:09 PM

Boss hog. I never knew that. I guess I'll be looking in to that upgrade instead.

Thanks for the help guys!
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 5:58:05 PM

If its a PCIE x16 1.0 you will be fine. Some small performance loss but not crippling. Looks to me like thats what the evga 680i has. No worries.
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a c 122 B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 6:16:08 PM

I ran my eVGA 680i with the E6600 at 3.3 GHz with an ACF7P.
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January 20, 2010 6:44:33 PM

Seeing as how I'm really just looking to make this last another year or so, I guess now would be the time to try overclocking. I'll give that a shot with the upgrade process.
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!