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Questions about parts,Building a new PC and upgrading another one.

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June 9, 2010 7:36:08 PM

To start off this is going to be a long post as I'm trying to get help on a few issues:

I'm trying to come up with the best soloution for upgrading and bulidng 2 - 3 pc's. The one I have now is this:

PC1:

Win XP pro Sp3

Thermaltake Shark VA7000BWA Full Tower Case

Gigabyte GA-MA785GM-US2H AM3/AM2+/AM2 Motherboard

AMD Athlon II X2 250 Regor 3.0GHZ Socket AM3 Dual Core Processor

Antec BP550 Plus 550W Power Supply

MSI R770-PM2D1G-OC Radeon HD 5770 1GB Video Card

Corsair XMS2 2GB (2 X1GB) DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Ram

2 Western Digital WD5000YS Hard Drive

Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Extreme Music 7.1 Sound Card

BenQ 16X DvdR DVD Burner

Sony Optiarc Black IDE DDU615/B2s DVD-ROM

NEC 1.44MB Floppy Drive


I also have the following parts sitting around doing nothing:

AMD Athlon 64 X2 4000+ Windsor 2.0
Ghz Socket AM2 Dual Core CPU

EVGA Geforce 7950GT KO 512MB Video Card


I have an older Gaming PC that I bought from Falcon Northwest, many years ago that is still running, it's used mainly for email, web surfing and some very light game playing.

Finally I have an older Emachine PC that died about 1 1/2 years ago that I never could get running again.

If you have followed me so far I thank you.

I'm thinking of upgrading PC 1 to Windows 7 Ultimate, keeping the same motherboard and then putting in this CPU:

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

then upgrading the ram to:

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

Do you think this Ram is good to use with my Gigabyte motherboard?

Do you think this is a good way to go?

How long do you think this PC will be good for (capable of) when it will be used mainly for playing MMO's, web surfing and school. I'm starting school in July to get my associate degree in Software Engineering.

Then I plan on using either the 4000+ cpu or the CPU I have in PC1 + the Evga vidoe card as the base for building another PC that will be used by my kids for gaming, school work, email, web surfing etc. Using either the case from the Falcon or the Emachine? Or should I just buy an new mid tower case and chuck the other two? Neither case has real good ventialtion.

Please consider that money is definately an issue here (I'm disabled living on a fixed income)

What I'd like to do is take PC1 like it is and just give it to my kids then build myself a new Intel based I5 or I7 based system that will be used for MMO's, School work etc but from what I see good Intel CPU's are pretty pricey and probably out of my price range :( .

I've been racking my brain pricing parts on Newegg, Tiger Direct etc and so far it's driving me crazy.

If you read this far and understand what I'm trying to do, why and for as little as possible then I thank You!
June 9, 2010 8:00:31 PM

try this for time:

I also need to take my wired home network and make it wireless, I plan onn using this router:

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

Do you think that this router will work for 2 - 3 Wired PC's, a wireless Printer (that I still need to buy) and a wireless Xbox 360?

Sorry for all the questions, I'm learning as I go and it seems that every time i want to expand and/or upgrade my home network and/or PC's i have a ton of questions that need to be asked.
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June 9, 2010 9:58:14 PM

I dont think the new CPU is going to do much for you. Very few games are multi-threaded and that Phenom II x2 is a good gaming CPU. Increase the RAM to 4GB, install windows7 64bit and maybe get a CPU cooler and overclock it to 3.4 or so. Once extra core will maybe help in crysis and probably in GTA4, but not much else.

I run the cheapest netgear 802.11G wireless router (zonet, d-link, ASUS, whatever brand is basically the same). They all seem to overheat/wear out every few years so Id rather buy 2 cheap ones and swap/toss than one good one. I run 2 wired gaming desktops, 2 wireless laptops and 2 Nintento Wii on mine every day. You will never have a router bottleneck from internet access.
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June 9, 2010 10:10:02 PM

So should I stay with the CPU I have now or upgrade to the Phenom II?

So you're saying that any 4 port wireless router will work for me with 2 or 3 wired pc's a wireless printer and a wireless xbox 360? I'n guessing it's all in the way i set the new router up? No need for a switch or anything else other than a wireless adapter for the Xbox 360 and of course the new router?
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June 9, 2010 10:31:00 PM

A 4 port wireless router has a 5th port in the back that connects to your DSL or cable modem. It will handle 4 wired connections plus effectively unlimited wireless connections. All connections split the internet bandwitdth. You internet speed cold be an issue, your router will not. A single computer downloading large files will use up most of your internet bandwidth, the router is never the problem.

I would just overclock your existing CPU a bit. Im running an Athlon II x3 2.9 overclocked to 3.5ish and a 5770 in a new Gigabyte AM3 motherboard.
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June 9, 2010 11:13:54 PM

Here are some thoughts for you:

1) Run your games, but reduce the resolution and eye candy to a minimum. This will simulate what will happen if you upgrade to a stronger graphics card. If your FPS improves, it indicates that your cpu is capable of driving a stronger graphics card to higher levels of FPS.

2) Keeping your graphics resolution and settings the same, reduce your cpu power. Do this by removing the overclock, or by using windows power management to set a maximum cpu% of perhaps 70%. If your FPS drops significantly, it indicates that your current cpu is a limiting factor, and that a faster cpu would help.
I suspect your cpu is fine.

3) I presume your windows-7 ultimate upgrade is an academic deal. ...good. If not home premium works for most home users.

4) Upgrading to 4gb with a 4gb kit is good, you can't have too much ram.
Go to the patriot web site and enter your mobo or PC, and get a list of compatible ram sticks.
http://www.patriotmemory.com/configurator/index.jsp

5) I use the dir-655 router, and I have had no problems with it. It is easy to set up, and I am no expert on routers. It supports 4 wired connections and wireless agn. I connect 3 pc's and an xbox, and 2 laptops, g/n with no problem.

If you can't cobble together a second backup pc, then look on craigs-list or e-bay for a deal. Sell your unused parts; you will get something.
---good luck---
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June 10, 2010 12:50:52 AM

Quote:
3) I presume your windows-7 ultimate upgrade is an academic deal. ...good. If not home premium works for most home users


Actually I ran in to a guy on Ebay that had bougth too many retail versions and had to unload them in a hurry, he gave me a 2nd chance offer on the auction I bid on and saved me a bundle. I haven't received it yet, but it should be in this week. It's going to be my first OS upgrade since I went to XP. I never messed with Vista or any of the other OS's because of all the negative things I read about them. Win 7 is the first I feel comforatable enough in trying out.

Once I get it I'm gong to do a dual boot so I can mess with it and learn it. Once I feel comforatable enough with it I'm just going to reformat and start fresh.

Quote:
4) Upgrading to 4gb with a 4gb kit is good, you can't have too much ram.
Go to the patriot web site and enter your mobo or PC, and get a list of compatible ram sticks.
http://www.patriotmemory.com/configurator/index.jsp


Thanks for the link it will hekp me out a lot.

Quote:
5) I use the dir-655 router, and I have had no problems with it. It is easy to set up, and I am no expert on routers. It supports 4 wired connections and wireless agn. I connect 3 pc's and an xbox, and 2 laptops, g/n with no problem.


Thanks for the information, I now feel good about doing this :) .
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June 10, 2010 1:28:12 AM

dndhatcher said:
A 4 port wireless router has a 5th port in the back that connects to your DSL or cable modem. It will handle 4 wired connections plus effectively unlimited wireless connections. All connections split the internet bandwitdth. You internet speed cold be an issue, your router will not. A single computer downloading large files will use up most of your internet bandwidth, the router is never the problem.

I would just overclock your existing CPU a bit. Im running an Athlon II x3 2.9 overclocked to 3.5ish and a 5770 in a new Gigabyte AM3 motherboard.



I've always been reluctant to overclock my systems, mainly because I've never done it before and don't know how to. If someone could point me to a good simple article on how to do it I'll give it a shot.
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June 10, 2010 6:27:58 PM

The overclocking forums here have some stickied guides. The guides at overclock.net are what I learned to overclock from.
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