I've been a lurker for a while...I was into PC gaming a lot back when the original Rainbow Six and Ghost Recon series came out...I've been reinvigorated by Steam for about the past year, and with the upcoming release of Battlefield 3, I'm really looking to revamp things for optimal gaming. My daily setup is a 2011 MacBook Pro with a 2.0 GHz Sandy Bridge i7 Quad & 8GB of RAM...but I couldn't justify the expense for work to upgrade to the better GPU, so I only have the 256MB 6490M. I run Steam in both OS X and in Windows 7. It runs stuff pretty slick, but I don't see it handling BF3.
So...I have a friend that is getting rid of their desktop PC and willing to give it to me for free. Would it be worth upgrading to a new GPU? Is there any chance it can run BF3 at a decent FPS @ 1680 x 1050??? Here are the goods:
Intel P965 Chipset (I know the graphics slot is NOT a PCI-E 2.0, but it is a 16x)
Intel Core 2 Duo E6300 or E6400 (can't remember which)
4GB DDR2 RAM
500GB 7k2 RPM HD's x2 in RAID 0
500w power supply
Replacement GPU around $200
Down the road, my goal is to take the HD's, power supply, and the new GPU and stick them in a Z68 + i5-2xxx rig.
Umm, It's hard to say. They haven't released the specs for BF3 yet, so there's no way to tell. However based of BFBC2, I can say that your CPU would be a big limiter. It should maintain OK framerates, nothing fancy.
Next question is could you list the power supply? This is actually very important, as you may need a new PSU as well.
turns out it's a Dell XPS 410...nothing special, I know. But I've found where the BIOS can handle the Core 2 Quad Q6660 @ 2.4 GHz and they're going for less than $100 on eBay. The kicker on this machine though, is that it doesn't allow overclocking.
Do you think moving the CPU to a Core 2 Quad AND moving to something like this:
Not the be a killjoy, but you will most likely need to update the PSU. That one is a no name brand, is not 80+, and is old. It also only has 22A on the 12v rail. Yeah, you need an update before you get a 6950.
Hiper are more Europe then US as such we are not familiar with there products. http://hipergroup.com/home.php. I do agree with you that the caps are probably upgraded and a psu upgrade is probably in the works. Especially since it can be carried over unto the next build. However for the time being I believe it will be fine until audiojim can afford a new one
Thanks folks! I'll probably put a meter on it and see what it's outputting. It's pretty easy to see if a cap is really failing, especially when it's swollen.Thankfully, I've dealt with replacing them on the power supplies of some Samsung LCD TV boards and in guitar tube amps. Mouser.com is a great resource.
Not that I wouldn't just upgrade to a more efficient one though.
I think though with his cpu, he is going to get a bottleneck. I've got a GTS 450 with an older Athlon x2 at 2.8ghz and get a bottleneck at the same resolution as the op on BFBC2. Best chance the op may have with that cpu in the system is to get the new card and crank the graphics all the way to max so hopefully the card will be busy processing frames to show a bottleneck on the cpu.
Another option Op, maybe see if you can find a cheap deal on an Athlon II quad or triple core with a motherboard in the combo that supports ddr2, and grab a 5770 or gts 450. May see more benefit from that upgrade than only the card.
I'd actually just save the money and get a gtx 460, very cheap and gives good performance. Also it's less power hungry and would pair well with an e6400. The athlon x2 2.8gz is a weaker cpu than the e6400 so you wouldn't see much out of it. Used an amd build with the same cpu and a gtx 275 got major stuttering from cpu maxing out; after going to an intel build with e6600 I got to play lag free in bfbc2 high settings @ 1680x1050 resolution.
Yeah, I noticed when I cranked up to higher settings, I actually had a little better rates due to the gpu working harder. Still looking at grabbing an athlon II x4 as soon as I can sell my old Windows XP laptop.