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Best video card for mini-ATX form factor?

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a c 612 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 9:14:02 PM

I'm trying to help someone out and I don't have any experience with mini-ATX motherboards. What are the latest/best video cards that will fit in a smaller case on a mini-ATX motherboard? Is it a standard selection, or do you actually have to measure things out and see what fits?
October 20, 2010 9:23:56 PM

You'll need to do some measuring lol.

We need to know how many spaces the card can fill, if it needs to be a small form factor card, or just a regular sized one.

Do you need a PCI-E card?
Are you into gaming, video editing, folding?

How much room do you have between the 2 ends of your case where the card would be between?

Take your time getting your specs, just ask if you need help.

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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 9:26:13 PM

the slots are all standard size. so a PCI-E x16 is the same size on a m-atx board as it is on an ATX mobo. the question is the room you have in the case. is it a slim line case, mini-tower, mid-tower, full tower?
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a c 612 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 9:31:35 PM

This is the thread I've been working on:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/page-300925_33_50.htm...

He's getting to the point of talking about upgrading the whole system, and I'm just trying to see if there is any way for him to get a smaller video card and a new PSU. It seemed like others had lost interest in the thread, and I just don't have the necessary knowledge to make a good recommendation.
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 10:25:16 PM

i doubt he has a mini-atx board, its probably a micro-atx (aka mATX) and it will work fine with any video card physically but there are several issues

1. his FSP 250w PSU - obvious upgrade
2. his Phenom 9500 is killing him and I doubt the PB BIOS will let you upgrade to anything decent
3. his mobo may be only PCI-E 1.0 x16 rather then 2.0 so some ATI PCI-E 2.1 cards may not work
4. if you did upgrade the mobo, the PB OEM version of windows may not work so you would need a consumer OEM version
5. he may not have room for a dual slot card (he seems to lack the ability to tell, not his fault but it is an issue). i'm certain he can't fit an ATI 5870 or GTX 470 in a mini-tower...an experience builder might be able to do it but a first timer would have issues.

so he has two choices

1- get a 400w PSU from antec, ocz, enermax, silverstone, xigmatek, corsair, or seasonic and then stick a single slot ATI 4770 or 4850 in there. call it day because his CPU really is not fast enough for anything more popular

2- new build
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October 20, 2010 10:38:55 PM

jaguarmatt said:
You'll need to do some measuring lol.

We need to know how many spaces the card can fill, if it needs to be a small form factor card, or just a regular sized one.

Do you need a PCI-E card?
Are you into gaming, video editing, folding?

How much room do you have between the 2 ends of your case where the card would be between?

Take your time getting your specs, just ask if you need help.

It is me hes been trying to help.
I can answer a few of your questions right now. I'm a gamer, not a folder ;p my chassi is a mini one, its its around ~ x400mm vertical ~ x180mm horizontal and ~ x390mm across (I dont know the right word for this in english :S) its called Depth maybe? I Dunno, i hope you understand. The rest of you'r question i didn't understand cus it aint my language lol :p 
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October 20, 2010 10:47:19 PM

ct1615 said:
i doubt he has a mini-atx board, its probably a micro-atx (aka mATX) and it will work fine with any video card physically but there are several issues

1. his FSP 250w PSU - obvious upgrade
2. his Phenom 9500 is killing him and I doubt the PB BIOS will let you upgrade to anything decent
3. his mobo may be only PCI-E 1.0 x16 rather then 2.0 so some ATI PCI-E 2.1 cards may not work
4. if you did upgrade the mobo, the PB OEM version of windows may not work so you would need a consumer OEM version
5. he may not have room for a dual slot card (he seems to lack the ability to tell, not his fault but it is an issue). i'm certain he can't fit an ATI 5870 or GTX 470 in a mini-tower...an experience builder might be able to do it but a first timer would have issues.

so he has two choices

1- get a 400w PSU from antec, ocz, enermax, silverstone, xigmatek, corsair, or seasonic and then stick a single slot ATI 4770 or 4850 in there. call it day because his CPU really is not fast enough for anything more popular

2- new build

Think i'll go for the new build then m8 since i will be able to build even more when the money allows it lol. As for now i have a budget around ~591-636$. I mean, my computer basically sux and im getting quite frustrated over it tbh...
As for now i have a budget around ~591-636$. What is worth upgrading first you think?

What did you mean with (he seems to lack the ability to tell, not his fault but it is an issue)? :p 
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 10:56:15 PM

krayde said:

What did you mean with (he seems to lack the ability to tell, not his fault but it is an issue)? :p 


means I don't want you to purchase a dual slot card only to find out you only have room for a single slot card.

as for builds, this one is pretty good and within your budget
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2010/10/0...

a good article for you to read
http://www.yougamers.com/articles/29369_the_autumn_2010...

and youtube is filled with how-to videos from installing a motherboard to applying thermal paste
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October 20, 2010 10:58:48 PM

ct1615 said:
means I don't want you to purchase a dual slot card only to find out you only have room for a single slot card.

as for builds, this one is pretty good and within your budget
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/buyers-guide/2010/10/0...

a good article for you to read
http://www.yougamers.com/articles/29369_the_autumn_2010...

and youtube is filled with how-to videos from installing a motherboard to applying thermal paste

Aha i see :) 
Well, i don't know if i need to watch any install-your-motherboard-videos just yet since im still unsure if i need another motherboard... :p 
And paste? lol wut?

I will be reading your links tho!
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 11:01:21 PM

...i used the motherboard as an example for a new build, not as an upgrade for that PB system
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October 20, 2010 11:03:58 PM

ct1615 said:
...i used the motherboard as an example for a new build, not as an upgrade for that PB system

Oh yes lol >.< nvm that!
The Corsair 400CX 400W that was included in that build, its only 400w, yes? A GTX460 doesn't it require a bit more watt?
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October 20, 2010 11:07:38 PM

Hmm, question! What is this xD? Akasa AK-876, is it just an ordinary fan, or something 'bit more complexed?
Yes and also, is a CPU = Processor?
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a c 264 U Graphics card
a c 245 V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 11:08:25 PM

17seconds said:
I'm trying to help someone out and I don't have any experience with mini-ATX motherboards. What are the latest/best video cards that will fit in a smaller case on a mini-ATX motherboard? Is it a standard selection, or do you actually have to measure things out and see what fits?

1) Is it a micro-ATX, or a mini-itx ? A mini-itx motherboard is limited to just one pci-e slot.
2) What is the case?
3) What is the psu?

The reason for asking is that the size of the case will limit how long(and strong) the graphics card can be.
The actual case may determine if a dual slot card is possible.
The psu will determine how strong a graphics card can be supported.

Lian li sells several cases of both types. Looking at their spec page you can see a diagram of how it is laid out, and the maximum length of card. Since their cases use standard atx psu's, the power required is not an issue.
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 11:31:27 PM

krayde said:
Oh yes lol >.< nvm that!
The Corsair 400CX 400W that was included in that build, its only 400w, yes? A GTX460 doesn't it require a bit more watt?


the GTX 460 needs a PSU with 25a on the 12v rail. the corsair 400w (its been retired in the USA) has 33a on the 12v rail and peaks at 480w so its more then enough for the GTX 460.

the CPU is the central processing unit or processor for short

the Akasa AK-876 is the heat sink and fan they choose in the build. CPU cooler for short


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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 11:33:01 PM

geofelt said:
1) Is it a micro-ATX, or a mini-itx ? A mini-itx motherboard is limited to just one pci-e slot.
2) What is the case?
3) What is the psu?


if you read Matt's linked thread above, then you would see those questions answered
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October 20, 2010 11:57:08 PM

ct1615 said:
the GTX 460 needs a PSU with 25a on the 12v rail. the corsair 400w (its been retired in the USA) has 33a on the 12v rail and peaks at 480w so its more then enough for the GTX 460.

the CPU is the central processing unit or processor for short

the Akasa AK-876 is the heat sink and fan they choose in the build. CPU cooler for short

Hmm okay i see, thanks! So is it necessary to have the Akasa, or can you manage with just fans?
I've bumped into a slight problem here, looking at the build you gave me at bit-tech.net, they suggest the 1GB GeForce GTX 460. Well, i can find many, many of those... which one is it? xD
And the price tag on that build ~660$, i can discard the storage unit, no need. I have 4GB of RAM alrdy so take it that isn't REALLY necessary? And then again, maybe i can discard the Akasa for now aswell if it isn't needed.

I mean the Akasa seams like a really good thing to have, but maybe if it isn't necessary i can just wait to to get it and get it later, can i just manage with the fans the case includes?
Hope you understood lol

and reading what u said once again i understood it as they use the Akasa as a fan and a heatsink, yea? (which i dont know what that is)
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a c 264 U Graphics card
a c 245 V Motherboard
October 20, 2010 11:58:26 PM

ct1615 said:
if you read Matt's linked thread above, then you would see those questions answered

Probably true. I don't have the patience. Probably why a new thread was created.
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October 21, 2010 12:00:08 AM

geofelt said:
Probably true. I don't have the patience. Probably why a new thread was created.

Patience is an art my friend
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October 21, 2010 12:37:02 AM

The CPU, 3.0GHz AMD Athlon II X2 250, isn't that a bit slow for a pretty serious gamer? I dunno, you tell me :p 
Is it worth to put another ~37$ on a upgrade of CPU?
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 1:56:48 AM

i personally would go with an AMD athlon II x3

as far as serious gamers goes, you may be a serious gamer but your budget is not so you go with the best value you can get

the bit-tech article is more of a guide, you don't need to get the exact same product listed

any GTX 460 will work, get the best priced one

you can use the cooler that comes with the CPU so you don't need the Akasa

i'm assuming you have DDR2 RAM currently, you can re-use it if you get an older AM2+ mobo but any AM3 mobo needs DDR3 RAM

you will also need a new copy of Win 7
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October 21, 2010 2:47:55 AM

ct1615 said:
i personally would go with an AMD athlon II x3

as far as serious gamers goes, you may be a serious gamer but your budget is not so you go with the best value you can get

the bit-tech article is more of a guide, you don't need to get the exact same product listed

any GTX 460 will work, get the best priced one

you can use the cooler that comes with the CPU so you don't need the Akasa

i'm assuming you have DDR2 RAM currently, you can re-use it if you get an older AM2+ mobo but any AM3 mobo needs DDR3 RAM

you will also need a new copy of Win 7

W T F?! A new copy of win7?! Why? :S
I currently use a not genuine copy of it, cant i just install it like i did on this computer? lol. How do I check which type of RAM i have, so i can figure out if its DDR2 or DDR3?

I've decided i will build a whole new computer and within time build furthermore on it, but for now what i think is best to upgrade with the money i have right now is...

New Cassi:

New Motherboard: I dont know anything about motherboards so tips will be much apreciated! <3 (I did take note on your AMD x3 tho, which one of 'em tho, the AMD x3 445 or AMD x3 450?)

New PSU:

New GPU (Graphic Card, yes?): Any GTX460-470 (Probably a 460 since i want an upgrade asap!!) What is best of an upgrade for the money? A GTX 460 768mb, GTX460 1GB, GTX460 1GB OC?

Nothing else pops into my mind atm...



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October 21, 2010 7:40:59 AM

ct1615 said:
i personally would go with an AMD athlon II x3

as far as serious gamers goes, you may be a serious gamer but your budget is not so you go with the best value you can get

the bit-tech article is more of a guide, you don't need to get the exact same product listed

any GTX 460 will work, get the best priced one

you can use the cooler that comes with the CPU so you don't need the Akasa

i'm assuming you have DDR2 RAM currently, you can re-use it if you get an older AM2+ mobo but any AM3 mobo needs DDR3 RAM

you will also need a new copy of Win 7

W T F?! A new copy of win7?! Why? :S
I currently use a not genuine copy of it, cant i just install it like i did on this computer? lol. How do I check which type of RAM i have, so i can figure out if its DDR2 or DDR3?

Which AMD x3 did you mean? The AMD x3 445 or the AMD x3 450?
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I've decided i will build a whole new computer. So what i think is best to upgrade with the money i have in hand right now is;

New Cassi: Cooler Master HAF 912 Plus

New Motherboard: I dont know anything about motherboards so tips will be much appreciated!

New PSU: Corsair VX 550W 80+, is this a good PSU to support my new GPU?

New GPU: EVGA GeForce GTX 460 SuperClocked 768MB GDDR5 / PCI-E 2.0 / SLI / 2xDVI, definatly !!

Do i need a new processor for this kind of setup, or is it manageable with my Phenom(tm) 9500 Quad-Core 2.20GHz? Please God, tell me no!! :ange: 
I have now done a price runner check through following components: Chassi, PSU, GPU, CPU (which motherboard to use is yet no decided, but it will be be under 150$) All together it sums up to about ~670$, probably too much then everything actually costs, but i chose to over price it just to be on the sure side, so prices are not exact).

*please take note that this is not going to be a complete build, I will still upgrade...*
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 4:51:21 PM

well since you have a copy of windows already you will be fine there

i would suggest an athlon II x3 CPU with an AMD 770 mobo. they are older (replaced by the 870), cheaper but solid. if you get the AM2+ version of the 770, you can re-use your RAM. the AM3 version needs DDR3 RAM, i would personally go with the AM3 version.

here are two examples, does not mean get the exact one although they are both fine mobos

AM2+ budget board
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AM3 budget board
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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October 21, 2010 4:58:35 PM

Hmm guys, im coming to a decision soon. But i still need a Motherboard that can support my GTX460 SOC, and my DDR2-RAM. Could you please look and see if you find any within ~77-111$?
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 6:25:08 PM

i just linked you one above
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October 21, 2010 6:25:55 PM

Oh lol, i took it as an old post, ty!
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October 21, 2010 6:33:20 PM

ct1615 said:
well since you have a copy of windows already you will be fine there

i would suggest an athlon II x3 CPU with an AMD 770 mobo. they are older (replaced by the 870), cheaper but solid. if you get the AM2+ version of the 770, you can re-use your RAM. the AM3 version needs DDR3 RAM, i would personally go with the AM3 version.

here are two examples, does not mean get the exact one although they are both fine mobos

AM2+ budget board
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

AM3 budget board
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

There is two types of the Athlon II x3, either the 445 or the 450 one. I will NOT upgrade my CPU for now, that will have to wait, so put aside for now. The AM2+ mobo, can i only use DDR2 type RAM or can i put in DDR3-RAM as well if i decide to upgrade to DDR3?

We can spend max 148$ on a new mobo, gimme the best you can find that supports preferably DDR2 AND DDR3. And if not both, just DDR2 for now. I might trash it l8er on and get a DDR3.

Cheers, thanks!
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 6:40:57 PM

i'm not going to recommend a CPU until you are ready to purchase one because the market constantly changes. the 445 or 450 may not even be around when you decide to buy

if you want to re-use your old CPU then you have to go with the AM2+ board that only takes DDR2 ram....but then you already have an AM2 board so whats the point of a new mobo?

i would strongly suggest you purchase a new CPU, mobo and RAM once you have saved enough money for all three. otherwise you are just wasting money.
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October 21, 2010 7:14:56 PM

ct1615 said:
i'm not going to recommend a CPU until you are ready to purchase one because the market constantly changes. the 445 or 450 may not even be around when you decide to buy

if you want to re-use your old CPU then you have to go with the AM2+ board that only takes DDR2 ram....but then you already have an AM2 board so whats the point of a new mobo?

i would strongly suggest you purchase a new CPU, mobo and RAM once you have saved enough money for all three. otherwise you are just wasting money.

Meaning of getting a new mobo is because i cant fit a GTX460+ into mine because i think mine is a mini mobo. And yes, i do want to reuse my RAM.

But i am very inpatient in this specific matter, so how big of a loss is it to get a normal sized AM2+ mobo?
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 7:18:58 PM

you have a micro-ATX board and the GTX 460 will fit on it. we have been over this
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October 21, 2010 7:39:02 PM

ct1615 said:
you have a micro-ATX board and the GTX 460 will fit on it. we have been over this

Sorry if i'm slow, but its much info to process for me at once :p 
So conclusion: I have a mini-ATX? How do we know this? So my current mobo will fit the GTX460, its no point upgrading to another mobo atm. Instead i will then go for another CPU.

Thanks for being patient with me ^^ :D 
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October 21, 2010 8:11:27 PM

Okay, so I've called Packard Bell (the manufacturer of my PC) and asked them to look up which mobo i had. It was a Packard Bell BENGAL (Meaning it is Packard bells own motherboard). Just thought it could come in handy to know.
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 8:20:31 PM

ok, this is your motherboard
http://cgi.ebay.com.sg/Foxconn-RS740M03-8EKRS2H-Socket-...

it is not a mini-board, it is a micro board. it just a shorter form of the normal ATX board. that long black slot under the the yellow CPU bracket is your PCI-E x16 slot. it is the exact same size on every board, be it a micro, normal, etc.,

so your GTX 460 will fit in the slot with no issues
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October 21, 2010 8:36:44 PM

Question!
My EVGA GeForce GTX 460 SuperClocked 768MB GDDR5 / PCI-E 2.0 / SLI / 2xDVI does fit into my current mobo you said. But does my mobo fit into this case? Cooler Master Storm Scout GamingCase
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 21, 2010 9:22:32 PM

yes, you have a micro ATX board

Motherboard Compatibility
Micro ATX / ATX
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October 21, 2010 10:40:26 PM

ct1615 said:
yes, you have a micro ATX board

Motherboard Compatibility
Micro ATX / ATX

What does ATX stands for? Does Micro ATX means its a tiny motherboard or? xD
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October 21, 2010 11:00:25 PM

ct1615 said:
ok, this is your motherboard
http://cgi.ebay.com.sg/Foxconn-RS740M03-8EKRS2H-Socket-...

it is not a mini-board, it is a micro board. it just a shorter form of the normal ATX board. that long black slot under the the yellow CPU bracket is your PCI-E x16 slot. it is the exact same size on every board, be it a micro, normal, etc.,

so your GTX 460 will fit in the slot with no issues

Ok thank you so much! Great to hear :)  So things are closing up now, i finally starting to get an idea of which components i should get!

atm it looks something like this

Graphic: eVGA GTX460 768mb SoC
Chassi: Cooler Master Storm Scout GamingCase/Cooler Master HAF 912 Plus (I've read that the HAF series is bad cus of much vibration and no included dust filters, is this true?)
PSU: Corsair VX 550W 80+ (probably the one i will go for!)/OCZ ModXStream Pro 600W
CPU: Should i use remaining money to upgrade my CPU, or should i save it and upgrade to something even better? Remember, i dont wanna go all in and get some monster xD

Now we have around 148-222$ left either to spend or to save. What do shall I do?
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 22, 2010 1:41:42 AM

the HAF 912 plus is a fine case as is the scout, can't go wrong with either one

like i stated before and for the last time, in order to upgrade your CPU to anything meaningful you will need a new CPU and motherboard and RAM.

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October 22, 2010 2:32:45 AM

ct1615 said:
the HAF 912 plus is a fine case as is the scout, can't go wrong with either one

like i stated before and for the last time, in order to upgrade your CPU to anything meaningful you will need a new CPU and motherboard and RAM.


Hmm ok. I guess its just best to get a new GPU and case then. Wait until i have more money then upgrade CPU, motherboard and RAM all together. Does this sound like a good plan?
It says in www.inet.se that the Cooler Master HAF 912 Plus is a ATX & mATX - Cooler Master Storm Scout GamingCase is only ATX. Does this actually means my mobo can fit into the Storm Scout?

*edit* I found a video review on the Storm Scout Case, and he said it wcould fit both ATX and mATX. lol im getting confused as hell :p 
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 22, 2010 3:06:24 AM

the scout is both mATX and ATX, check newegg or cooler master both state it

upgrading your cpu+mobo+ram all together sounds like a good plan
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October 22, 2010 3:08:37 AM

ct1615 said:
the scout is both mATX and ATX, check newegg or cooler master both state it

upgrading your cpu+mobo+ram all together sounds like a good plan


Yeah alright, but does it sounds like a good plan to first upgrade PSU, Graphic and Case, wait until budget allows for more, then go for new CPU, RAM and Motherboard.
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a c 235 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 22, 2010 3:23:43 AM

krayde said:
Yeah alright, but does it sounds like a good plan to first upgrade PSU, Graphic and Case, wait until budget allows for more, then go for new CPU, RAM and Motherboard.


yes
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October 22, 2010 3:41:58 AM

ct1615 said:
yes

Thanks, you've been more then helpful along with other ppl! Couldnt have made an decision without you!!
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a c 612 U Graphics card
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October 22, 2010 5:17:34 PM

Best answer selected by MattO17secs.
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a c 612 U Graphics card
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October 22, 2010 5:18:03 PM

Thanks, CT1615!
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October 22, 2010 8:25:38 PM

Idd, thanks!
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a c 271 U Graphics card
a b V Motherboard
October 22, 2010 8:41:01 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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