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Upgrading Current Build

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August 16, 2011 8:16:44 PM

I built this computer a year ago and I'm thinking about upgrading a few components. I will list the specs and list a few potention upgrades that I'm looking at.

i5-760 3.6 GHz
Gigabyte P55-UD4P Motherboard
Coolermaster Hyper 212 CPU Cooler
Corsair 4 GB DDR3 1600 MHz
WD Caviar 500GB 7200
EVGA GTX 470 1280mb
OCZ StealthXstream 700W Power Supply


Some potential upgrades that I am considering for my system include RAM and a 3rd gen SDD( Possibily a new storage drive).

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... RAM to add to my current 4GB.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/ite... SSD upgrade for System files and possibly Star Wars MMO when it comes out.

Would these upgrades be worth the hassle and money? Would you make any other changes?

Also, is it me or has RAM plummeted in price? It appears to be about 1/3 of the cost from a year ago.

Thanks.
August 16, 2011 8:25:52 PM

Memory prices are always dropping.
I remember when I bought my good and old Pentium and paid $30 per megabyte...
As of your up-grades, it all depends on your current experience.
I mean, I have a Crucial SSD myself, and couldn't be happier with it. If you really get annoyed waiting for your system to boot, or your programs to load, then go for it.
When it comes to memory, it's like you said. Prices are down, and 8Gb is the sweet spot today. If you have a 64 bit OS, why not?
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August 16, 2011 8:32:40 PM

My w/ my current setup I have everything on the 500gb. No partitions for the system drive or anything like I should have. The boot times are fine, Windows loads in 20 seconds. I have heard that w/ enough RAM, games can be ran strictly off the RAM rather than relying much on the hard drive speed. Is there any truth to this?

Also as far as memory goes, I know that failure rates are still fairly high compared to other components, but are there any brands that are better than another or is it all personal opinion. Also, I plan on sticking w/ 1600 GHz, the PC12800 I believe. Is there a noticable difference between timings? Mine is 9-9-9-24 now, How much more should I pay for 7-7-7-24?

Thanks
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August 16, 2011 10:41:42 PM

After further thinking, I will likely buy 16g of the RAM listed and remove the 2 slots I currently use. That would cost 160ish or I will add 2 additional sticks of the same RAM I have in for 8mb total for around $50.
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August 16, 2011 11:35:07 PM

1) A ram upgrade is a good idea, here is some added justification:
http://blog.corsair.com/?p=65

2) Ram is sold in kits for a reason.
Ram from the same vendor and part number can be made up of differing manufacturing components over time.
Some motherboards can be very sensitive to this.
It is better to get what you need in one kit.

3) The Intel current cpu's are largely insensitive to ram speeds or timings. Don't pay much more for faster speeds or better timings. You can detect the difference with synthetic benchmarks, but you will be hard pressed to tell the difference in application performance or FPS. Fancy heat spreaders are mostly for marketing, don't pay extra there either. They might be good for a record seeking overclocker only. Tall spreaders may also get in the way of your cpu cooler.

4) All SSD's perform remarkably similar doing the things a normal desktop user does. Don't make a decision on glowing synthetic benchmarks that bear no resemblance to what you will use a SSD for. Today, I think Intel 320 or 510 are the SSD's to get. Their track record for reliability has been better.
http://www.behardware.com/articles/810-6/components-ret...
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