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Upgrade suggestions for Gaming machine.

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February 22, 2010 7:10:39 AM

I have a dell xps 600 that I have made a few upgrades to. They are the only thing that are up to date with the games I play. I have a budget of $200 every other month I want to spen on upgrades. I am sitting on around $250 now for first upgrade. But im not sure if its worth upgrading or if I should pull card and ram for new build.. Hope someone can point me in right direction. Here are my specs.

Mainboard : Dell 0GC375
Chipset : nVidia nForce4 SLI X16 Intel Edition
Processor : Intel Pentium D 820 @ 2800 MHz Dual core
Physical Memory : 4096 MB (2 x 2048 DDR2-SDRAM )
Video Card : Nvidia Twin Frozr OC GeForce GTX 260
Hard Disk : SAMSUNG (160 GB)
DVD-Rom Drive : SONY DVD-ROM DDU1615
DVD-Rom Drive : HL-DT-ST DVD+-RW GWA4164B

Thanks,
Jarrod
February 22, 2010 7:34:32 AM

The best thing you can do is to keep your money and in a few months buy the parts for a new gaming machine. That's what ill do ...now depend on other opinions ,and on you.
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February 22, 2010 7:36:09 AM

Everything You Have Will Suffice, Except The CPU, Im 95% Sure A Core2 Quad Will Go Into That Board And Work (A BIOS Update May Be Requred However) Get A Second GTX260 Or Two Of The Upcoming Nvidia GF100 Dx11 GPUs, And A Faster And Larger Hard-Disk (Id Reccomend A 120GB Or Round Bouts SSD For Your Apps And OS And Making The 160GB Or A Bigger Drive As Your Secondary Storage) And Windows 7 64-Bit If Your Not Running It Already) And Possibly A 23" Or Bigger S-IPS Display (Higher Quality Monitors Have Alot To Do With Great Gaming And S-IPS Will Beat The Snot Outta A Cheap Low-Quality TN+Film Panel) Im Running An S-IPS 20" Dell 2001 Display And It Puts My Friends 24" TN+Film Diplay To Shame When It Comes To Image Quality.

Your Machine With These Upgrades Will be Plaenty Fast For The Next Three Years Even
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February 22, 2010 8:59:41 AM

The Dell 0GC375 will not work with any Core 2 Duo/Quad chips.


I recommend the following:

$159.99 - Asus M4N82 Deluxe motherboard (supports x16/x16/x4 3-Way SLI)
$ 95.99 - AMD Athlon II X4 620 (quad core, can reach 3.25Ghz+)

Reasons why this is the best upgrade for you:

1. $255.98 shipped
2. SLI at full dual x16 speeds
3. 3-way SLI
4. Lets you keep your DDR2 memory
5. Supports all current AM3 chips
6. Might support new 6-core AM3 chips
7. Quad core overclockable to 3.25Ghz and beyond
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February 22, 2010 2:37:55 PM

^ it's not a good idea to do 3-way SLI with a 4x slot. Not only that, but due to the huge cooler on his 260 it takes up 3 slots and would thus require a big extended-ATX case with the 260 going on the bottom. Two - way SLI would be a good idea though ^_^
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February 22, 2010 2:42:25 PM

megamanx00 said:
^ it's not a good idea to do 3-way SLI with a 4x slot. Not only that, but due to the huge cooler on his 260 it takes up 3 slots and would thus require a big extended-ATX case with the 260 going on the bottom. Two - way SLI would be a good idea though ^_^


Voodo did not say to do 3 way sli he just said that was a plus to the board and seriously that would be a great upgrade exept my suggestion would be to go with an ATI Graphics Card like the HD5770 or better !
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February 22, 2010 2:48:02 PM

Your decision is more or less the same either way. You will need a new motherboard, processor, and etc. The only think that's really worth saving from this build is the graphic card and optical drives. (the ram is debatable)

So your decision is-- put the parts in a new machine, or swap the parts in the old machine? In the old machine you save the $80+ you would have to spend on a new case--however you wouldn't have a computer to fall back on if you assemble something wrong or need to get online..

**you need to investigate your dell power supply in terms of compatibility--it looks to be a nonstandard shape--and that could be a large negative toward using the dell case over again.

This is my suggestion for processor/motherboard. The 2.9 ghz triple core Rana AMD processor is a better value for gaming than the X4 620 because of the higher clock rate. I think the 3.0 Ghz rana is a better deal yet--but its $10 more.

The motherboard in this combo takes ddr2, but you can explore the other combo deals if you like--there are many competitive options. (this is a cheaper single GPU board--no option for crossfire)

1. GIGABYTE GA-MA785GM-US2H: $79.99
2. AMD ADX435WFGIBOX: $74.99
Combo Discount: -$20.00
Combo Price: $134.98

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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February 23, 2010 1:02:09 AM

Thanks to everybody for your advice. I have alot to consider. Might just work my way into new case, and maybe a suggesed upgrade before then that I can swap over when time comes.
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March 2, 2010 7:33:15 AM

Ok I am going for new build, keeping my GeForce GTX 260 and cd drives. Would I need new harddrive for better speeds or will it be fine? I have been looking at recommended builds and am asking for suggestions and opinions again. I want mobo to be able to upgrade to i7 and have good support for dual SLI, plan to get another gtx 260 sometime. Want ddr3 ram also.

Here is what I am narrowed build down to, not sure if all is best combo or bang for buck. I would like save as much money as possible but still have great gaming machine that can be upgraded alot further. Please suggest brands/parts that are just as good and will save me money or be better match for price.


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

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

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

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

HDD: NOT SURE IF I NEED TO UPGRADE OR SWAP OLD?

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

GPU: GTX260 SWAP FROM OLD MACHINE

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

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


PLEASE! Give me your input on this or help me make this build better for around $700 or cheaper!





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March 2, 2010 12:13:45 PM

Hey Vette,

MOBO- This is an Intel Motherboard-- it wont work with the AMD chip-- you need an AM3 chipset.

HSF -do you plan to overclock? (You only need this if you do, because the CPU comes with a cheaper heatsink.)

HDD- Old works, as long as you get a motherboard with the plug for an IDE (unless it was sata)

PSU- I almost told you this was way too much, until noticing you plan crossfire and Wow.. your plan for dual GTX 260s DOES actually need this beast.
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March 3, 2010 2:39:11 AM

Dont know where I got the mobo link, Or what i was thinking when posting it. But do you have any suggestions for a MOBO that would go good with what I want.

HSF - I will remove from my list as I am not going to overclock.

Anything on my list overpriced or unnessecary? Or any better combos to get bang for buck that you know of?

Thanks deadlocked for your time and expert advice!


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March 9, 2010 1:07:03 PM

I dont think so-- dual GTX 260s are one of the most power-hungry setups. Maybe with the 650w corsair, but I don't think I would try it with other brands.

If you are looking to save money I would go with one of the 700w OCZ models which have very good rebates at the moment. I cant for the life of me remember at the moment if the Modstream, Stealthstream or Fatlity is the beter line though....
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

This is Antec bronze certified is 750w, $109-$20 instant - $20 MIR = $69
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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March 9, 2010 3:12:14 PM

the fatality was the high mid range but in the ocz hierarchy

this is how it is
ocz z series
ocz elitextreme
ocz gamextrme/fatality
modextreme
stealthextreme
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March 9, 2010 5:43:51 PM

obsidian86 said:
the fatality was the high mid range but in the ocz hierarchy

this is how it is
ocz z series
ocz elitextreme
ocz gamextrme/fatality
modextreme
stealthextreme



Thank you :D 

In that case the 700w Fatality would be a good choice. 80+ and 56 amps on a single rail for $69 after MIR.

But seriously-- two GTX 260s pull a lot of juice and are hot --you need a good PSU and very very good case ventilation.
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March 10, 2010 2:56:37 AM

That looks sweet--that side fan is massive!
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March 16, 2010 1:28:20 AM

Ok thank you. Going with Antec 650w.

Another question. With the PSU having top fan, will the fan be fighting my gtx 260 fan for air if I buy PSU bottom mount case?
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March 16, 2010 1:53:23 AM

Hey... I had forgotten the full background of this thread when I posted last--just reread it.

I want to say that SLI GTX 260s are quite power hungry, and while this PSU could probably run them, it would occasionally be running near peak capacity. Personally, I would want a larger safety margin -- as I suggested in the earlier posts.

This Tom's article records power of twin GTX 260s at 610w in a generic system.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-geforce-comp...

Check out this older thread discussing the issue:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/259069-33-corsair-650...

With regard to the fan next to the card-the PSU fan sucks air from inside the case and blows the air out--so it seems like it would be more positive than negative.
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March 17, 2010 5:13:37 PM

That thermaltake is not nearly as good as the corsair, and costs just as much as the better corsair model. Its only 78% efficiency and 44amps on +12v rail.

Corsair models come with 52 amps and 80+ bronze. (85% efficiency)
The better corsair model (the HX) is $99 and has the 4 6-pin connectors you need to run two GTX 260s.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For comparison: when you put your specs into the Corsair power calculator it recommends you get the 850w power supply. Yes, it is a conservative measurement, but realize that you are undercutting it by a full 200w.
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March 22, 2010 10:33:12 PM

Thanks for everybody's help.

Got it all together, with everybody's advice. Very happy with gaming performance increase.

Here is what I got now:

GIGABYTE GA-MA785GM-US2H
Athlon II X3 440 Rana 3.0GHz
OCZ Gold 4096 MB (2 x 2048 DDR2-SDRAM )
Nvidia Twin Frozr OC GeForce GTX 260
OCZ GameXstream PSU

3dmark06 results were : 12800, is that decent?

Might have to look into OC eventually.
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March 23, 2010 1:05:25 AM

Was only tested at 1280 x 1024..

Wonder what could be going on. Ran Prime95 and other tests with no issues.
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