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Looking to upgrade GeForce 7900, Whats compatible and better?

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July 6, 2011 9:28:29 PM


Hello Everyone,

Background:

I built my P.C about 5 years ago now and i think its time for an upgrade! Its not a bad P.C (its survived this long!) but now im playing around with the UT3 engine"

Problem:
My graphics card is a GeForce 7900 GT/GTO which was good at the time but now i dont know what to replace it with, will anything fit in the same slot? is anything with a higher number better or is 7900 better then 8500 because its the very best of the 7000 series???

Spec:
Operating System: Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit (6.1, Build 7600) (7600.win7_gdr.101026-1503)
BIOS: Phoenix - AwardBIOS v6.00PG
Processor: AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 3800+ (2 CPUs), ~2.0GHz
Memory: 3072MB RAM
Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GT/GTO

Any other things you think i should upgrade? im going to upgrade my ram to 6gig and i think i might even try and actually overclock my machine this time round!

I appreciate any help!

-Thanks, Chris
July 6, 2011 9:42:12 PM

i cant seem to edit my post, but heres the memory and stuff of the graphics card:



Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce 7900 GT/GTO
-Display Memory: 1528 MB
-Dedicated Memory: 248 MB
-Shared Memory: 1279 MB
a b Î Nvidia
July 6, 2011 9:44:29 PM

What kind of motherboard do you have? What kind of PSU do you have? List your full specs
Related resources
a b Î Nvidia
July 6, 2011 10:15:44 PM

Honestly even a 6670 would be a bit much for that CPU at it's stock speed. If you have an AM2 motherboard you may be able to upgrade to a newer CPU, but if you're on socket 939 then there is no point in even trying to upgrade it, but even so you should be able to overclock it a bit.
July 7, 2011 4:05:07 AM

Meh, ignore bottlenecks cause you going to need to upgrade within a couple years anyways. Best card I've seen you prolly should get for the money is the 460 (768 Or 1GB) model. Both cards are 150-190 range and when you do get extra money for a new MB and stuff you can toss the card you buy into it. Now if your considering a new computer very soon, the 560TI is the way to go. I'm picking one up on release day of Battlefield 3.
July 7, 2011 4:16:34 AM

Don't bother spending more than $60 on your graphics upgrade. I suggest you post on the classifieds here for a GeForce 8800 or 9600GT. Your CPU is too weak to use anything that much more powerful than a 7900. You should try overclocking it, but it won't go more than 200MHz or so faster. Completely ignore dormantreign's advice because he's recommending you spend $100 more than your computer can actually use.

The absolute most you should spend is $90 or so to get a 5770/6770 or GTS 450 then move that to a new computer, but it's still overkill.

My Athlon x2 5000+ bottlenecked a 9600GT. So yours won't even do that well. Absolutely do not upgrade your RAM unless it's free (from a friend).

Your best option is $30 for a used 9600GT/8800 or so. Or $40 for a new GT 240.

Download and install CPU-z to find out if your socket is AM2 or 939. If you're socket AM2, you actually can probably upgrade it to something tons more powerful than your current CPU.
July 8, 2011 5:52:28 PM

I was thinking whatever RAM i buy i could just throw in a new PC when I build one? although I suppose RAM has moved on from DDR2...Do you guys think i should just bite the bullet and get a new motherboard/CPU and salvage what I can?

My Mother Board is a ASUS M2N-E
and my PSU is a Hyper QC something that delivers 560 wattage.

I take it i could pop the 560TI in if i get a new CPU aswell? would it transfer to another motherboard? i just dont want to upgrade this PC if im going to decide to pretty much scrap it next year.

Thanks for all your advice so far!

July 8, 2011 5:57:16 PM

oo sorry forgot to tell you my CPU socket its a Socket AM2 (940),


Here iss some more of the CPU-z output:

Processors
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Number of processors 1
Number of threads 2

APICs
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Processor 0
-- Core 0
-- Thread 0 0
-- Core 1
-- Thread 0 1

Processors Information
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Processor 1 ID = 0
Number of cores 2 (max 2)
Number of threads 2 (max 2)
Name AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+
Codename Windsor
Specification AMD Athlon(tm) 64 X2 Dual Core Processor 3800+
Package Socket AM2 (940)
CPUID F.B.2
Extended CPUID F.4B
Brand ID 4
Core Stepping BH-F2
Technology 90 nm
Core Speed 2009.4 MHz
Multiplier x FSB 10.0 x 200.9 MHz
HT Link speed 1004.7 MHz
Stock frequency 2000 MHz
Instructions sets MMX (+), 3DNow! (+), SSE, SSE2, SSE3, x86-64, AMD-V
L1 Data cache 2 x 64 KBytes, 2-way set associative, 64-byte line size
L1 Instruction cache 2 x 64 KBytes, 2-way set associative, 64-byte line size
L2 cache 2 x 512 KBytes, 16-way set associative, 64-byte line size
FID/VID Control yes
Max FID 10.0x
Max VID 1.350 V

K8 Thermal sensor yes
K8 Revision ID 5.2
Attached device PCI device at bus 0, device 24, function 0
Attached device PCI device at bus 0, device 24, function 1
Attached device PCI device at bus 0, device 24, function 2
Attached device PCI device at bus 0, device 24, function 3


Chipset
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

Northbridge NVIDIA nForce 570 SLI rev. A1
Southbridge NVIDIA nForce 570 SLI rev. A2
Graphic Interface PCI-Express
PCI-E Link Width x16
PCI-E Max Link Width x16
Memory Type DDR2
Memory Size 3072 MBytes
Channels Single
Memory Frequency 334.9 MHz (CPU/6)
CAS# latency (CL) 5.0
RAS# to CAS# delay (tRCD) 5
RAS# Precharge (tRP) 5
Cycle Time (tRAS) 15
Bank Cycle Time (tRC) 19
Command Rate (CR) 2T

Memory SPD
-------------------------------------------------------------------------

DIMM # 1
SMBus address 0x50
Memory type DDR2
Module format Regular UDIMM
Manufacturer (ID) Corsair (7F7F9E0000000000)
Size 1024 MBytes
Max bandwidth PC2-5300 (333 MHz)
Part number CM2X1024-5400C4
Manufacturing date Week 02/Year 07
Number of banks 2
Data width 64 bits
Correction None
Nominal Voltage 1.80 Volts
EPP no
XMP no
JEDEC timings table CL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS-tRC @ frequency
JEDEC #1 4.0-4-4-12-15 @ 266 MHz
JEDEC #2 5.0-5-5-15-19 @ 333 MHz

DIMM # 2
SMBus address 0x51
Memory type DDR2
Module format Regular UDIMM
Manufacturer (ID) Corsair (7F7F9E0000000000)
Size 1024 MBytes
Max bandwidth PC2-5300 (333 MHz)
Part number CM2X1024-5400C4
Manufacturing date Week 28/Year 05
Number of banks 2
Data width 64 bits
Correction None
Nominal Voltage 1.80 Volts
EPP no
XMP no
JEDEC timings table CL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS-tRC @ frequency
JEDEC #1 4.0-4-4-12-15 @ 266 MHz
JEDEC #2 5.0-5-5-15-19 @ 333 MHz

DIMM # 3
SMBus address 0x53
Memory type DDR2
Module format Regular UDIMM
Manufacturer (ID) Corsair (7F7F9E0000000000)
Size 1024 MBytes
Max bandwidth PC2-5300 (333 MHz)
Part number CM2X1024-5400C4
Manufacturing date Week 28/Year 05
Number of banks 2
Data width 64 bits
Correction None
Nominal Voltage 1.80 Volts
EPP no
XMP no
JEDEC timings table CL-tRCD-tRP-tRAS-tRC @ frequency
JEDEC #1 4.0-4-4-12-15 @ 266 MHz
JEDEC #2 5.0-5-5-15-19 @ 333 MHz
July 8, 2011 6:07:45 PM

since its am2, i think you're in luck because i believe you can use socket am3 cpu's on your mobo.
July 9, 2011 7:09:56 PM

computernugget said:
since its am2, i think you're in luck because i believe you can use socket am3 cpu's on your mobo.


Yes it looks like thats a very good point. Any recommendations on CPU's? On a quick look round these two caught my eye:

a Dual Core 3.3 ghz

and

a Quad core 3.1

I'm just not sure if i want to spend the extra £20 for an extra 2 cores and a small hit in clock speed. I will mostly be doing C++, C# and Unreal Engine 3 (UDK) development and i'm not sure if i'll see the benefit of the quad cores in code complementation. Although saying that looking here:

at this post for visual studios

and this post for UT3 it looks like i really would see the benefit! And while I'm at it I should get some SSD hard drives and set them up on raid 1...this is starting to add up a little lol!

July 9, 2011 8:28:59 PM

Ok So far im thinking the Quad core upgrade for my processor and the following for the rest:


RAM Upgrade:
Without head spreaders
or
with heat spreaders
warranty
Do heat spreaders really make a difference?

Hard drive upgrade, i really want fast read and write so I was thinking maybe getting an SSD or a high RPM HDD on RAID but I don’t really know that much about SSD I was looking at this one though.

And im still perplexed on the graphics card up grade :p  but this looks a reasonable price and dormantreign recommended the 460

All that comes in at about £340 and I was thinking of a max budget of £500 so what do you guys think? Maybe its worth getting an extra SSD and putting them on RAID? As I suppose that would help with the code developing machine
a b Î Nvidia
July 9, 2011 11:44:06 PM

You can only use a more modern AM3 CPU IF your motherboard supports it. You have to look up your specific board to see what CPU support it has and what BIOS version you need before you go dropping in a new CPU.
July 10, 2011 9:55:50 AM

I had a quick look on here and it looks like if I update the bios it will work:

CPU:
ADX645WFGMBOX
ADX645WFK42GM 645 3.1 GHz, 512 KB L2, Rev. C3, 95W, Socket AM3, ADX645WFK42GM

Bios Required
5001

Notes:
Any Due to Bios ROM size limitation remove LAN PXE ROM and change Crashfree3 to Crashfree

although i have no idea what the notes mean....

I'm starting to wonder wether i should really just got the whole hog, if im already getting a new CPU, new GPU, new RAM, New SSD...mabye i should get a new motherboard to...

the question has snowballed from "what graphics card should i get" too "to upgrade or to start from scratch" :sweat:  maybe i should start a new thread...
a c 172 Î Nvidia
July 11, 2011 10:21:06 AM

Righteo I'll close this thread then, if there's a problem with that PM me.
!