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Want some advice on what I should upgrade next

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June 18, 2011 10:25:40 PM

Ok, first time posting on these forums even though I have browsed them often in the past. I want to upgrade my system to run the games I enjoy a bit better. (I don't pretend to be a expert in computer hardware or software that is why I am posting here for advice)

It is a Gateway DX4820

Current system: --- not shure what you guys need to know so I will post as much as possible (yay for copy and paste)---

Processor: Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q8200 @ 2.33GHz 7.1 5.9
Memory: (RAM): 6.00 GB
Graphics: ATI Radeon HD 4670 1gb
Gaming graphics: 3839 MB Total available graphics memory
Primary hard disk: 99GB Free (582GB Total)
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Total available graphics memory 3839 MB
Dedicated graphics memory 1024 MB
Dedicated system memory 0 MB
Shared system memory 2815 MB
Primary monitor resolution: 1680x1050 (22" LCD)
Secondary monitor resolution: 1024x768 (I only use this monitor for music etc because it is really horrible)
DirectX 10

I have so far upgraded my video card to the above and to be able to handle that I have upgraded my power supply to a Rocketfish 550w (apparently only outputs 500w according to some people though)

My budget currently would allow me to spend less than $200 CAD but I might be able to land a part time job to buy something a little more shiny.
Thanks in advance, will appreciate any advice.

p.s I usually play fps/action games (no rts or rpgs for me), Oh also for the record what subsection would this actually fall into??

More about : advice upgrade

June 18, 2011 10:38:48 PM

You got a decent machine there but what I would suggest is a solid-state drive (SSD) also you gonna have to reinstall windows and install the windows on the solid-state drive (SSD) in order to make it function and the rest of things you would like to browse faster, doing so you will be allowed to browse app, games even running few things faster than before but it also depends on which solid-state drive (SSD) your buying since the GB of its matters and most important is the performance of it. I say Do research of one you like to buy not just buy it and not knowing how it functions

Quote:

1. Do you have a SATA or IDE Controller?

Most drives are designed for SATA, though there are some IDE (aka: ATA and PATA) drives available also. To know which one you need, look inside your computer, or check out the specs/details of your laptop/netbook. If you have a computer, open the case and locate your hard drive. Look at the wires on the back of your hard drive.

Which connectors below do they look like?

2. Internal vs. External
External drives are mostly for portable data, like a USB flash drive, so an internal drive is the best option for an SSD drive, so it can make your Operating System (Windows, Mac OSX, Linux) faster and more responsive.

3. Capacity
The most common sizes are 32, 64, 128 and 256 Gigabytes (GB). The operating system will use about 10 GB of space, so make sure you leave enough free space for your applications, games, files and so on. I would recommend getting a minimum of 64 GB, and up to 128GB, unless you have a big budget.

4. Form Factor
Most drives are 2.5" which is the standard for laptops and netbooks. Some drives are only 1.8", so make sure you purchase a bracket (about $5.00) if you want to place a 1.8” drive in a 2.5” slot (or a 3.5” bracket to place a 2.5” drive in your desktop computer)

5. Reviews
These drives are still too recent to just look at the specifications (specs). Read as many reviews as you can before you make your purchase. These are the important specs to keep an eye on:

Connector type (sata or IDE), Internal or External, Capacity, Form Factor - (see above)
Cache Memory: Most drives come with a 64 MB Cache memory, which is very important to prevent stutters when writing to the drive.
Sequential Access Read/Write: The speed of the drive is very important. The faster the speed, the faster your Operating system will be.
TRIM or Toolbox: TRIM Command is a vital part of any Solid State Drive. TRIM allows the drive to keep its effectiveness after many read/write cycles. If the SSD doesn’t support TRIM, makes sure the drive comes with a toolbox of sorts, frequently called WIPER, so you can periodically optimize your drive, to keep it nice and fast. Reading reviews and visiting the Manufacturer’s website, for firmware upgrades, will help you identify if the SSD supports either TRIM, or comes with a WIPER.
Warranty: The longer the better. If you experience problems with your drive, you want to be able to get a replacement, or adequate support.


Note: These info above are from another website not mine. Incase admin bans me here..just helping a guy out...
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June 18, 2011 10:46:06 PM

I have thought about a new hard drive for a while but I was going to wait as long as possible to upgrade it because right now the SSD technology is advancing really quickly (I also heard that they can get clogged if you don't wipe them of data yearly or something). Also I am kind intimidated about upgrading my hard drive because I know virtually nothing on how to do so.

Also don't SSD's just speed up start up times, I heard they do virtually nothing in games (besides speeding up loading screens a little bit).
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June 18, 2011 11:34:00 PM

Hmmm true that....it only speed up loadings...nothing to do with fps..besides that I have no reasons to let you do any upgrade on your machine since it has only 1 GPU slot, like I said its decent..
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June 18, 2011 11:47:24 PM

how long ago did you upgrade your video card? you could upgrade it again to somthing like a 5770 or to a 5670. i mean your rig is good. there is only so much you can upgrade on it.
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June 18, 2011 11:50:13 PM

I upgraded my video card about 2-3 years ago from the default one that came with my pc
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June 19, 2011 1:06:51 AM

you can try upgrading again, you have sufficient power for a newer card. the 5670 offers about %20 better performance than the 4670 (if i remember correctly) there are a lot of good cards out there for around 100 bucks.
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June 19, 2011 1:10:53 AM

Would you subject going with the normal coolers or the IceQ etc? The cooling system I have on my normal 4670 doesn't seem that fantastic.
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June 19, 2011 1:51:07 AM

well for the newer cards, they produce less heat and all 5670 coolers are pretty big to begin with.
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June 19, 2011 8:38:11 AM

do you know what PSU you have?? for $200 you can get quite a nice graphics card, if your psu can take it
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June 19, 2011 5:57:58 PM

"I have upgraded my power supply to a Rocketfish 550w (apparently only outputs 500w according to some people though)"
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June 19, 2011 8:34:25 PM

ihops psu is enough to pwer a card with one power connecter on it i think. so something like a 5770, 6770, or a 6850. a 6850 would be best since they are rather cheap. and offer the best performance of the ones i mentioned.

here is a good at from XFX, it comes with lifetime warranty with registration (i think they still do)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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June 20, 2011 2:33:15 AM

Ok, I'll take a look at the 6850. How does my CPU rank for what I am using it for, and also what would be the best way to cool my case if I only have one space for a fan in the top back, If i had to take a guess I would say it would have to be an exhaust fan right?

I can take a pic if you guys want. I just find that heat tends to build up on the bottom of my case over long gaming sessions because of where the exhaust from my video card is going.

Edit: pics uploaded

Inside :
far (the blue is not from me, I bought the power supply at a discount price because it had been returned to the store once, It has 1 blue LED in it :D )

close

With side on (side is really dusty because it has not been on my computer for a while)

With the side on my case seeing as I have no fan my video card runs at about 50*c on IDLE, with the side off it runs at 40* on idle
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June 20, 2011 5:37:47 AM

nice minecraft doll dude. where you get it?

and yeah from the looks of it, its maybe a 92 mm fan. try and measure the space where you can put the fan at and try to buy a fan of that size as it will help exhaust a lot of excess hot air from your computer.

edit: you cant overclock on your dell can you?
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June 20, 2011 6:53:47 AM

my sister made the minecraft figurine for me, and my compute is a It is a Gateway (DX4820) not a Dell.

As for overclocking I have no idea, I have thought about overclocking but I really have no idea how to do so. How can I tell if I can overclock my comp?

Edit: got a great deal on this computer also, got it like 3years ago for $800 CAD, and with that I got a 22" lcd and a keyboard+mouse combo
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June 20, 2011 4:36:01 PM

nice deal, and ive never overclocked so i cant really say, well at least not with an intel cpu.

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June 23, 2011 9:48:07 AM

i read something somewhere that most intel CPUs have a looked multiplier, are you sure your cpu isn't locked?
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June 23, 2011 9:51:35 AM

oh and BTW i don't know how to find out if it is looked or not, in some of the newer models intel have put a "k" in the number to show that it is unlocked (so if yours followed the same "rule" it would be Q8200K)
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June 24, 2011 1:56:12 AM

its an older model they have a locker multiplier but you can still overclock, with FSB and some other stuff. idk, intel was wierd back then.
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June 26, 2011 1:31:39 AM

to right mate! until Pentium 4...
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June 26, 2011 1:39:40 AM

anyway IMO i think you should get a 5850, it out performs a 6850 and it is cheaper (at least in aus land it is)
http://www.hwcompare.com/5916/radeon-hd-5850-vs-radeon-...
but if i'm not sure if you can unlock it like you can with a 6850 idk... only thing is i'm not sure if your PSU can take a 5850... but i think 500w is enough
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!