I am looking to upgrade my CPU on my Dell XPS 410. I have a NVIDIA GTX 550 Ti graphics card and and still running low frames in some areas of WoW and so I figure I need to get a different CPU. I don't know how to determine whether or not a CPU is compatible. I have a 375W Power Supply and currently am on a 1.86gHZ Dual Core processor. I have 2GB of DDR2 RAM and am using ReadyBoost with some flash drives for an extra 10GB of memory. The computer has an Intel P965/G965 Chipset.
your PSU is fine.
your Gpu is fine.
I have a GTX 550ti myself and it can max out black ops,bfbc2,WOW at 1920x1080p and get a steady 60fps usually. sometimes WoW drops to 45ish due to the area but nothing thats not smooth. i also use a quad core 3.7ghz..
Do you use Windows vista or Windows 7? 64bit or 32bit?
your CPU will most likely bottleneck your system in most modern games more then your GPU. if it's what i belive it to be. core2duo 1.86ghz?
If you just list a link of your exact computer specs or give me your Dell model number i can check all your specs exactly and make sure.
And also READYBOOST to be honest really has no effect so much on games.
Below is a chart from windows site on benchmarking games with readyboost.
I'd advise you to upgrade your ram. Like i said if you list your model number or even better your motherboard model number i can check exactly for you what you would need and what it is for sure.
Although that chart is great to look at, the OP's system at the top end of all upgrading won't be able to compare to your system's benchmarks. But he can do better than what he has for sure. The best CPU's sold in the XPS 410 were the MP626 Kentsfield Quad Core Q6600 2.40ghz and the WM543 Conroe XE X6800 2.93ghz. Personally, I would go with the Quad.
The processor must be LGA-775 socket, 1066 front-side-bus (FSB) to work with the Intel P965 chipset. You will also need to make sure you have the most recent BIOS update installed for your machine, which is version 2.5.3, and I THINK that is the only version ever used, so you should be fine. Now, just finding one of those processors is the trick, and they have held their price pretty well. Check eBay is your best bet.
Ready boost won't do a thing for gaming purposes.