Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

What am I looking at, cost wise, for a good upgrade?

Last response: in CPUs
Share
November 28, 2010 10:01:45 PM

I have a Gateway tower that we bought on eBay, refurbished, about a year ago. It had a Radeon HD2400XT, and I went ahead and bought a Radeon HD 5770 1GB right when they came out, along with a Corsair 400W PSU. So far, it plays most games fairly well, but the current Phenom 9500 (Quad/2.2) is definitely the slowing factor here. It has 2x500GB HDDs (No RAID), and 3GB DDR2 667MHz ram. I'm wondering what the cheapest CPU upgrade is. I'm assuming it needs a new MoBo, and it came with a mATX. Any way I should go about this; I want a substantial speed increase. I don't want to spend much money right now, as I don't actually game much, since I have a 360; and I use my laptop since it's more convenient, but I'd like the ability to game and the experience of doing this. Is it even worth it?

Anything is appreciated.
TIA, Alex

More about : cost wise good upgrade

November 28, 2010 10:25:03 PM

Quote:
Phenom II x4 940BE AM2+ , assuming u live in the US, there's newegg

No need to change motherboard


The full specs are here; how are you so sure that the MoBo is adequate?
m
0
l
November 28, 2010 11:00:47 PM

Ok, I will try a Phenom II x4 920/940 upgrade. Anyone know where the cheapest place to get one of those is? Used working is fine with me
m
0
l
Related resources
a b à CPUs
November 29, 2010 12:16:59 AM

The AM2+ 3.0 Ghz Phenom II X4 940 BE (125 watts TDP) CPU is a great powerful CPU but it states on Gateway's website that the Motherboard can only take CPU's under 89 watts and that CPU suggested would clearly be way beyond that.It's already using a 95 watt TDP CPU so I would suggest sticking to using only those types of CPU's or those less than 89 watts otherwise there is a great risk of burning out the motherboard.
See here.
http://support.gateway.com/s/MOTHERBD/Shared/4006254R/4...
and here
http://support.gateway.com/s/PC/R/1015014R/1015014Rnv.s...
Also it's listed as a AM2 based motherboard and not specifically as a AM2+ based board so there in lies a rather large limitation (no BIOS support for the later Phenom II,Athlon II CPU's,less hypertransport speed etc).

Apparently emachines also used those motherboards as well and here is a list of supported CPU's
http://www.e4allupgraders.info/dir1/motherboards/socket...

Gateway apparently went a little beyond the 89 watt limit by 6 watts (not much though).It looks like you should either stick with what you have or possibly consider replacing your motherboard with either a AM2+ or AM3 type and a newer CPU.
Of course by doing this you would have to install another version of Windows on the system as well since it wouldn't pass WPA.

However there is a trick though on replacing a motherboard so that you can use your previous version of Windows and software on your Hard Drive with another motherboard.One would have to choose a Alternative Replacement motherboard that uses the same (sometimes a similar one) chipset,the exact same Network Chip on the motherboard and the same IGP.
See here I did this with an old emachines that used a socket 939 board and replaced the board with a much more modern socket AM2+ board.
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/54953-2-alternative-r...

Your luck on finding an alternative replacement motherboard looks pretty good here as I see a couple of models with the same chip set,same exact network chip and IGP (similar).Some of these would work others would not on this list.Some boards are AM2+ which can use your DDR2 RAM other ones are AM3 based boards which use DDR3 memory.There are some typographical errors in here so double check the exact network chip at the motherboard manufacturers website.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

Note most of these boards also have a 95 watt TDP limitation also except that they can use modern Athlon II's and Phenom II's.
m
0
l
November 29, 2010 1:18:17 AM

aw, okay. well it's not worth it to me in that case. The OS wouldn't be a problem, as I have Win7 now. I guess I'll stick with what I have, as I'm not willing to spend $200 on an upgrade at this point in time.
Thanks for everything! :) 
m
0
l
a c 324 à CPUs
November 29, 2010 12:31:56 PM

stewartfan said:
I have a Gateway tower that we bought on eBay, refurbished, about a year ago. It had a Radeon HD2400XT, and I went ahead and bought a Radeon HD 5770 1GB right when they came out, along with a Corsair 400W PSU. So far, it plays most games fairly well, but the current Phenom 9500 (Quad/2.2) is definitely the slowing factor here. It has 2x500GB HDDs (No RAID), and 3GB DDR2 667MHz ram. I'm wondering what the cheapest CPU upgrade is. I'm assuming it needs a new MoBo, and it came with a mATX. Any way I should go about this; I want a substantial speed increase. I don't want to spend much money right now, as I don't actually game much, since I have a 360; and I use my laptop since it's more convenient, but I'd like the ability to game and the experience of doing this. Is it even worth it?

Anything is appreciated.
TIA, Alex


As a rule, gaming performance os more graphics card dependent than the cpu, particularly at higher resolutions.
To check this out, run these two tests:

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.
m
0
l
November 29, 2010 12:57:31 PM

WAIT!!!

Replace your motherboard first! I replaced a friends HP motherboard with a cheap, updated model with better NB and SB and the computer is twice as fast.

Everything runs through your motherboard so it should be your first component to upgrade, not the cpu or even the gpu.

For intance, I have a $20 2.8Ghz Sempron processor with an HD5570 gpu and it runs full HD video games with no lag because of the gpu and the newest motherboard. Your cpu is already better than any Sempron, so purchase the best mobo you can afford, then worry about the cpu.
m
0
l
a c 131 à CPUs
November 29, 2010 1:09:39 PM

geofelt said:
As a rule, gaming performance os more graphics card dependent than the cpu, particularly at higher resolutions.
To check this out, run these two tests:

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.

That's an awesome idea for a test.
m
0
l
!