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Whih component to upgrade first?

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Last response: in Graphics Cards
a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2011 1:41:03 AM

Hey everybody, and congrats you just made it through the first week of the new year! Anyway I'm thinking of helping my little brother upgrade his PC but I don't know which component to take on first as he has a bit of a small budget. Currently he's going from a stock Inspiron 530s. It comes with a locked mobo that has problems accepting quad-cores (Dell G33M02), so the highest it can go is an E8600 (looking at E8500 or 8400 as the E8600 is still insanely high). However he's also stuck with an old low-profile Radeon 2400 XT. Based on what I read here i should get a new card right away but I can't let him get stay with the old E4300 now can I? He plays mostly Left 4 Dead right now but I want to at least prepare for 2 years down the road since we already owned this PC for about 3 1/2 years already.

More about : whih component upgrade

January 9, 2011 1:46:35 AM

can you tell us your details on your system spec?
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a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2011 1:49:29 AM

My little bro's PC is a Dell Inspiron E530
CPU: Intel Core 2 E4300
RAM: 4 GB DDR2-800
Mobo: Dell (Foxconn) G33M02
OS: Windows Vista 32-bit Home Pre (maybe 7 Home Pre later on)
Video Card: Radeon 2400 XT
PSU: Dell 250W TFX (maybe Seasonic 300W TFX later on)
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a b U Graphics card
January 9, 2011 9:24:34 PM

I know these components aren't the best that's why I'm upgrading. I really just want suggestions.
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 12:03:25 AM

First I would contact Dell and ask them what CPU upgrade this board can truly support. I would also ask them if you can change the PSU to a "mainstream" one.

You biggest limitation will be because of low profile. I think the "best" card they ever made low-profile is an HD 5550. If you change GPU, you most likely need a better PSU as well, since you will be limited in power, a 350-400W should be enough. For CPU, it will all depend on what Dell will tell you is compatible.

What is your budget?
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January 10, 2011 12:10:26 AM

Yes, upgrade the PSU to a corsair or a antec, or something better than a dell one. Also whats the budget?
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 1:37:49 AM

<$100 for a single component, I already got the Radeon 5570 I'm going to sell to him. I plan to upgrade to a Seasonic 300W since it's the best for this slimline. On Dell's forum a lot of people already said that that the best it could go is dual-core since Dell locked it to those, apparently quad-core mobos that came with quad-cores won't support dual-cores etc. So which one first based on performance increase the GOU or CPU?
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 2:18:48 AM

mister g said:
<$100 for a single component, I already got the Radeon 5570 I'm going to sell to him. I plan to upgrade to a Seasonic 300W since it's the best for this slimline. On Dell's forum a lot of people already said that that the best it could go is dual-core since Dell locked it to those, apparently quad-core mobos that came with quad-cores won't support dual-cores etc. So which one first based on performance increase the GOU or CPU?
Just need to make sure all dual-cores are supported, not all MB supported the new 45nm C2D when they came out, some were stuck with supporting only the 65nm ones...

This PC only supports ITX PSUs? 300W could be enough even if ATI recommend 400W, I don't know exactly what is in that tower, but making guesses with the PSU calculator, I come-up with around 250-260W so it should be "ok".
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 10:45:22 AM

My bad not ITX, more like TFX, I don't no why it's so hard to find 400W units on Newegg and TD they only hae 300W units.
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 1:32:14 PM

My brother uses an E4400 and a 7800GT card and runs L4D2 well.
He wants his PC upgraded for the games coming out this year (Rift, GW2, Star Wars). The initial idea was to put in an E8400, I don't know what prices are like where you are, but in the UK an E8400 was £135.

For £165 I can rip out the motherboard, the CPU and the RAM and replace it with an AMD Gigabyte 770 mobo, 4gb DDR3 RAM and a RANA 450 CPU which is Tricore instead of dual. So, that extra £30 allowed a three core processor, an upgrade to DDR3 RAM, doubled up the amount of RAM (his current comp has only 2gb DDR2) and even better now enables the CPU to be upgraded to a Phenom II 955 or some such if they need it.

So, depending on costs you may find replacing the core a much better way to do things.
E8400 - $170

RANA 450 - $80
Asus 770 mobo - $70
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Mushkin 4gb 1333 CL9 RAM - $40
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

So, $190 upgrades the core system compared to $180 to buy dated technology at a dead end. If you can lend him the GPU until he can afford to pay you then things are dandy
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 1:58:59 PM

Best answer selected by mister g.
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a b U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 2:00:31 PM

Thanks, I wasn't planning on replacing the motherboard and he has enough RAM. I was just hoping to learn what would give him more of a boost, an E8500 or a new Radeon 5570 in his PC, but this would do.
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a c 332 U Graphics card
January 10, 2011 3:36:21 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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