Suggestion for Moderate Performance Gaming.

Hi,
I'd like to be able to play Portal 2 at the end of the month, and Skyrim at the end of the year at moderate settings..

720p, 2xAA, consistent 30fps is fine for me if that's all I can get.
When Skyrim comes out - I prefer to see everything at lower quality than fewer things at higher quality.
(so bigger draw distance with crummier textures, all the particle effects at lower quality, etc.)

A gutted version of this is what I have to work with:
http://wize.com/pc-desktops/p109981-hp-hp-pavilion-media-center-a1530n-desktop#specs

running a gutted version of windows xp.

I'm hoping to make it happen with a new PSU and a new-old Graphics Card.. and spend as little as possible to do it.. (as obviously it's an aging system)

suggestions?
16 answers Last reply
More about suggestion moderate performance gaming
  1. Do you have a preferred budget? I know we are going low end (so not super expensive) but it is still good to know your expectations.

    You do have 1 PCI-E 16x (excellent).

    For this sort of application you want a card with no power cable needed. My old favorite for this type of situation is the 4650 or 4670, however those have been replaced by these guys: http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&DEPA=0&Order=BESTMATCH&Description=5670&x=0&y=0 (which are 5670s).
  2. However, those are pretty pricey. Let me look around a bit. What country are you in?
  3. Ah, here we go (this is a good source): http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-gaming-graphics-card-geforce-gtx-590-radeon-hd-6990,2879-2.html

    So 5670 if you want to spend that much, but the 5570 is probably the one I'd recommend (or the NVidia equivalent - see the last page of the article to see a comparative list of all the cards).
  4. Cant really speculate much on this concerning games that are not out yet, but you can go here to see your motherboards info and what cpu you can upgrade to:
    http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c00714544&tmp_task=prodinfoCategory&lc=en&dlc=en&cc=us&site=null&key=null&product=3182805

    As far as graphics cards go, you can score HD 4850 cards for about 50-60 bucks on ebay:
    http://computers.shop.ebay.com/Computer-Components-/3667/i.html?LH_BIN=1&_nkw=hd+4850&_catref=1&_fln=1&_sc=1&_sop=15&_trksid=p3286.c0.m282

    http://cgi.ebay.com/512MB-Sapphire-Technology-ATI-Radeon-HD-4850-11132-35-/270728525445?pt=PCC_Video_TV_Cards&hash=item3f08ad7685

    http://cgi.ebay.com/MSI-ATI-Radeon-HD-4850-R4850512M-GDDR3-SDRAM-PCI-E-/130502825981?pt=PCC_Video_TV_Cards&hash=item1e629317fd

    You can also nab a Rocketfish 550 watt psu for under 50 bucks on ebay also:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ROCKETFISH-RF-550WPS-550-WATT-ATX-CPU-POWER-SUPPLY-/250768693462?pt=PCA_UPS&hash=item3a62fa98d6

    http://cgi.ebay.com/BRAND-NEW-ROCKETFISH-550-WATT-POWER-SUPPLY-GLOWS-BLUE-/380320530351?pt=PCA_UPS&hash=item588cdebfaf

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Rocketfish-550-Watt-ATX-CPU-Power-Supply-RF-550WPS-/360349593515?pt=PCA_UPS&hash=item53e6826fab

    Other then that you may want to grab you a 2GB more of DDR2 ram (given you are currently using 1-2GB on that system). You can score two 1gb sticks of DDR2 800mhz on ebay for about 20-25 bucks on average, sometimes cheaper.

    Other then that not much else I can tell you. That alone will get you some performance gain for games with your current cpu, but like I said, cant comment on how well you will be able to run games that have not been released yet.
  5. US - Hawaii.

    I'd like to keep a PSU and a Card under $200 - but the cheaper it is the more impulsive I'm likely to be. heh.

    I haven't googled extensively but the only thing that caught my eye was the HD 4770.

    I'm a little leary about replacing the PSU but that's just because I haven't done it before.. it looks easy enough.. and I'm pretty sure I have to - the one in there is only a 300watt one.
  6. Prof - That PSU looks good, but I think my MB needs a 4-pin in adition to the 20/24-pin (I'm not sure which it is)?

    Or is that not strictly nessisary?
  7. Personally for budget PSUs, I recommend sticking with the low power Antec (Earthwatts), OCZ (ModXStream), or Corsair PSUs.
  8. Is the 4-pin to the motherboard (it's near the processor) I mentioned the 12v connector?

    If so -

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Rocketfish-550-Watt-ATX-CPU-Power-Supply-RF-550WPS-/360349593515?pt=PCA_UPS&hash=item53e6826fab

    and

    http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-ATI-RADEON-HD-4770-512MB-PCI-E-DUAL-DVI-VIDEO-CARD-/200591839826?pt=PCC_Video_TV_Cards&hash=item2eb4349252

    seems to be the way to go..?

    the general consensus among reviewers seems to be that the 5670 isn't as good as the 4770.. and if I can get the 4770 for the same price as the 5670.. seems like I should go with the 4770? Unless there's a bottleneck with my crummy processor that makes the difference moot..
  9. The 4770 was a really cool card. It was a bit of an 'experiment' card, but one that went very well. I didn't think that they were still around in large quantities.
  10. Yeah the Rocketfish has the 4 pin power plug also, so you are fine with that. The 4770 is a just a tad slower then the 4850.
  11. cool. I think I'm settled than, thanks!

    (It's always nice when your upgrades leave you with enough money to buy the actual game. heheh)
  12. Yep, Skyrim should be pretty awesome, so save money for that. Have you seen the most recent news and screenshots?
  13. Not since the debut gameplay trailer.. what in particular?

    You know I was thinking that since it's going to be multi-platform that my system wouldn't need to be top of the line to play it - but looking at some of those screen shots..

    I hope I can run it with settings on par with the 360 version..

    haven't bought the card yet though - life threw a $400 bill at me. So I guess there's still time for getting something better..
  14. Just some of the recent interviews and screenshots (see bottom): http://www.tomshardware.com/news/The-Elder-Scrolls-Skyrim-Todd-Howard-RPG-DirectX-11,12495.html

    I haven't been following too closely either. I want to be surprised.
  15. just reading the article that was linked to - I already know too much. >.<

    Thing about TES games though - is you're surprised months after you start playing them.
  16. Yeah, I'm not too concerned either. Everything I've heard makes it sound like they are mostly on the right track, so it should be great.
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