I was wondering if you think it would be worth it or even possible for me to upgrade my GeForce 6800 for a newer faster card. Currently I have a Dell Dimension DIM9100. It has a dual core P4 3.00 GHz, and 3GB of RAM. I have Windows XP Media Edition installed. I use the computer for gaming mostly. My display is currently set to 2048 x 1152.
I have not been keeping up with hardware, and I am pretty much a noob in that department. How do I know if a card will be compatible with my system? Will I see a significant difference after upgrading if it is even possible?
According to what I can find on the DIM 9100 is that you have a PCIE x16 slot and a 375w PSU. The only real good news is that you can use a 3870/4670 but your CPU will bottleneck it. (should still be a rather large improvement) If you choose to not upgrade your whole system getting one of those cards will be the last upgrade your computer will be able to handle, if you really want to try and squeeze out every last bit of performance.
Given the specs of your machine, as well as what Paperfox said, I would suggest that it would be a much better investment get a new budget system. You'll have a decent boost from a 4670, or even a 5570 or something like that, but your PSU won't handle much more and your CPU will probably be the bottleneck.
Ok, thanks everyone. I was looking at Dell, and it looked like my processor speed was still good, but maybe there are other things I didn't consider. I was hoping that a new graphics card would really help, but I had a feeling I would need to get a new system. I will take a look at the HD4670 though.
I just realized you said it would be all my PSU would be able to take, not my processor... so it doesn't matter if my processor is still decent.
It's your PSU and your processor. You can't judge CPUs based on frequency(3 ghz in your case) alone. These days processors use an entirely different architecture and have multiple cores. Even a somewhat old and cheap CPU like the $60 E5200 is approximately 4x faster than your current chip despite running at a frequency of 2.5 ghz.
The HD4670 is a bit much for your CPU but is still a good upgrade and it should be ok for your power supply.
Dell 375 is a good PSU. Take a look at the side of the PSU, you should have 30A available on the 12V rail. This is enough to run nearly any single GPU card out there right now. You could put the 4850/4870 in there if you want, but it would be horribly held back by your CPU. I'd look for a nice 4670/9800GT. Big step up in performance, won't cost to much, and will handle your resolution better then that 6800. Speaking of which, what are you using this system for?