New CPU/Mobo

Okay so I have an Old Gateway Computer from '06 or '07 (I don't remember exactly :P) and It's fine but I'm a gamer and it's well outdated. So here's what I'm thinking of doing.(Please if I can't do this and it makes me sound stupid be kind.)

I'm thinking of buying a New Motherboard(looking at a GIGABYTE GA-MA7856M-US2H) that supports AM3/AM2+/AM2 and DDR2, and a New CPU(AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition).

Why? you may ask. Because I can only afford a new CPU and Mobo so no new RAM or GPU or much else.

So my question would be is it possible for me to just buy those two parts and use them with my other components? (I'll List my other components at the very end.) Will it work and if so what do would I need to do?

I have a friend who's very knowledgeable in the computer hardware and tech field and could help me with the installing and getting everything up and going if this were to work. However I can't reach him for a little bit so I turned to the fine people of Tom's Hardware. :)

Please any and all answers are welcome.

Great Thanks.

CPU: AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core 3.0GHz (Windsor)
GPU: ATI Radeon HD 4670 1GB DDR2
RAM: Dual Channel DDR2 2GB
HDD: 500GB
OS: Windows Vista Home Premium 32bit
PSU: 400W
9 answers Last reply
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  1. Your video card and 2GB RAM are restricting more when compared to your CPU.. I'll suggest upgrading the graphic card first as you can use it with your future build also.. Am not so sure about RAM as DDR2 is getting outdated and scarce very fast.. How much is your budget btw.?
  2. Yes, it can be done. But there are several obstacles we need to check out to see whether it can be done with just a cpu/mobo:

    1) Case: Your case has to be an ATX case, not BTX. If you give us the model number we can check that out. But you can tell as well: Assuming its a tower, when standing upright are the expansion slots above or below the back panel? If back panel means nothing to you, lookt at any case on Newegg, using the photo of the rear. The small, longish rectangular cut out (empty without a motherboard) is the "back panel".

    2) OS: If you have a real Windows disk, you're good on that score. If you have a recovery disk, that will not work. When you install a new mobo, you cannot just use the OS on your existing hard drive. And all a Recovery Disk will do is put the original disk image down. We need to install the OS from scratch. Win 7 OEM = $100.

    3) Memory: appears to be the right spec for the new mobo.

    4) GPU: will be fine

    5) Optical Drive: Will probably work fine assuming its SATA. If not, need to check if new mobo supports the required connection. SATA = thin flat data cable, small 3/8" connector. Old stuff = broad flat ribbon cable, 2" or so connector.

    6) psu: should be OK.

    7) Hard Drive: Same consideration as optical.
  3. Thanks for responding Emperus,
    my budget is 300 USD(So a new system is out of the question) and I can get the CPU and Mobo for well under that. Oh and I just upgraded my graphics card a couple months ago from a really terrible one. So what do you suggest?
  4. Thanks Twoboxer,
    I'm starting to think save up the money for now until I have enough buy a new machine. Considering that the hardware has made so many advancements, DDR3 RAM being an example.
  5. Here's what we recommend, depending on your budget or what kind of gaming performance you want at what resolution:,2732.html

    As you can tell from the title, its updated monthly.

    Good luck, whichever way you go.
  6. For a 300 USD budget, you can actually perform a full platform sweep..

    I take back my initial recommendation for a video card update as it can be done later also.. Moreover, upgrading to a more powerful video card will require you to change your PSU also..
  7. Emperus thanks again.
    Now if I were to do this will I be able to use the same HD without any problems? What I mean is, could I just replace all the parts and then start it up and it'll run? or would there be complications?
  8. Well chances are that it might all work out cleanly.. However i am not a cent percent sure about it.. You will be changing the motherboard so you might have to do a fresh OS install..
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