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5 questions about cpu, memory and graphics cards (newbie questions )

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October 26, 2010 8:49:27 AM

my setup
Pent 4 HT 3.0 cpu
3 gb of ram ( thou it says 2.6 )
geforce 8400 gs 512mb card.
1. 700mb avi movie burn times are just over 1 hour, would that be right ?
2. is this grapics card aiding in video editing / producing / burning ?
3. even when using 2-3 applications at once, memory scan says the system has around 80% free ram yet system is abit on the slow side.
4. i take it that d915gag motherboards can't be overclocked ? bios setup seem mostly un-selectable.
Last Question.
5. what other hardware changes ( besides the fan ) would i have to make when upgrading from 3.0 to 3.8cpu ?
October 26, 2010 9:14:11 AM

1. Yes, video burning is dependant on HDD read speed, DVD Write speed and CPU speed.
2. No
3. This could be because your hard drive is A) slow B) full C) old
4. If the BIOS is minimal, then overclocking isn't an option
5. What 3.8 CPU are you considering? Best thing to do is go to your motherboard manufacturers website and find your motherboard and look at the supported CPU list.
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October 26, 2010 3:27:08 PM

I suggest you think about a new system. What you have is relatively balanced and good for what it was 5 years ago. Current low end processors are much better. Here is a comparison of a pentium 4 660@3.6 vs. a i3-530:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/92?vs=118
The i3-530 is 3-4x faster. A dual core system will cause less disruption when multitasking.

I suspect that you are using XP which tries to conserve ram by swapping things out to keep a high number of pages free. Ram is much cheaper today, and windows-7 will try to keep the most useful things in ram for potential reuse. If you ues a 64 bit os, you will get the use of all your ram.

If your hard drive is IDE, get a new sata drive. They are bigger, faster, and cheaper. For a really responsive system, budget $100 or so for a SSD for the os.

Reuse what parts you can, and sell off the rest to recoup some funds.

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October 27, 2010 1:50:17 AM

+1 on the SSD boot drive. Your best upgrade would be to grab a small SSD and win 7. Keep your current drive for media, etc. This should cost around $200, and more importantly, if you decide to put together a new system a couple of years down the road, you'l be able to re-use win 7 and the SSD.
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October 27, 2010 5:52:23 AM

Quote:
if you decide to put together a new system a couple of years down the road, you'l be able to re-use win 7 and the SSD.


Just be aware that if you purchase an OEM Windows 7, you can't transfer it to a new build later on.
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October 27, 2010 6:57:42 AM

cmcghee358 said:
Quote:
if you decide to put together a new system a couple of years down the road, you'l be able to re-use win 7 and the SSD.


Just be aware that if you purchase an OEM Windows 7, you can't transfer it to a new build later on.


Not to a new build no, but you could upgrade your mobo, CPU, and RAM. When I did so I thought I'd have to call in, but the online activation worked. (I used the same SSD, periphreals, etc.)

In the old licence agreement any part re-used, even a cable or a screw meant it wasn't a new build. Now it has to be "substantially part of the computer" or something like that, but it's vauge, and MS has been pretty leinent about it. I think you'll be OK as long as you don't try to cheat the system.
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October 27, 2010 2:09:02 PM

cmcghee358 said:
Quote:
if you decide to put together a new system a couple of years down the road, you'l be able to re-use win 7 and the SSD.


Just be aware that if you purchase an OEM Windows 7, you can't transfer it to a new build later on.


Get the upgrade version of windows 7.
1) Price is similar to oem.
2) It is considered as retail, so you get Microsoft support, and no hassle transfer later.
3) You will get both a 64 bit dvd and a 32 bit dvd.
4) You CAN do a clean install with it.
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October 27, 2010 2:44:57 PM

SSD+Win7 Retail currently would most likely exceed the $200 etk suggested. Hence I was pointing out the limitations with OEM software.
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