Howdy. I've got a computer that's a little more than 2 yrs old and starting to show its age. A couple of my friends who are more hardware-savvy than I took a look at my specs and told me that my graphics card is my likely bottleneck. I'm trying to figure out if it's worth replacing just the card or the whole system.
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Exploratory BUDGET RANGE: Less than $250 USD if possible, it probably has a little wiggle room.
USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: Gaming (Starcraft 2, maybe Cata) & the occassional dvd/Netflix stream
CURRENT GPU AND POWER SUPPLY:
256MB ATI Radeon HD 2600 XT
I'm guessing on the power supply; it's a dell inspiron 530. I did some looking on google, and that seems to make it either 250W or 300. I'm kind of a hardware novice, so I'm not sure exactly how to find out.
OTHER RELEVANT SYSTEM SPECS: Dell Inspiron 530, 2.40 Ghz Intel Core2 processor Q6600 quad core, 3GB DDR2 RAM, all other parts are Dell stock.
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg, TigerDirect COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: US
PARTS PREFERENCES: none
OVERCLOCKING: probably not SLI OR CROSSFIRE: probably not
MONITOR RESOLUTION: one at 1440x900, one at 1680x1050 both are DVI
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: I'd like to be able to run SC2 at either High or maybe even Ultra. Cata as well.
Great deal on that card, but if he has the $$$ I wouldn't get that PSU. Grab a quality 500W or 520-600W PSU. It will be another $20-50, but it won't put him over budget. He'll also likely have enough power for the foreseeable future.
I didn't say it was a bad PSU. But if you have $200 to $250 to spend, why stop at only $150? The only issue I see with that PSU is that if he should want to upgrade to an even bigger card later, he'll have to upgrade the PSU again. If you buy a 500-600W PSU now, you can upgrade to the 6950 later and not worry about needing an new PSU.