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Upgrading PC to gaming PC

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September 13, 2011 3:09:03 AM

Hi, I'm trying to help my cousin upgrade his PC without buying a whole new system.

Approximate Purchase Date of new part(s): two weeks
System Usage: GAMING
Preferred Website(s) for Parts: amazon, newegg, tigerdirect

Current system:
CPU: Pentium(R) Dual-Core CPU E5200 @ 2.50GHz | Wolfdale | Socket 775 LGA
Mainboard: ECS G31T-M v1.0 | Northbridge Intel P35/G33/G31 rev. 10 | Southbridge Intel 82801GB (ICH7/R) rev. A1
RAM: Supertalent DDR2 2048 Mbytes | 5.0-5-5-15-20 @ 333 MHz | 2T
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 8400 GS | 512 MB @ 64 bits
HDD: 7200 RPM | 320 Gb
Microsoft Windows XP Professional Service Pack 3 (Build 2600)

What would you recommend to change that would have the greater effect on gaming? Maybe changing 2 parts...
(buying a quad-core, adding more ram, changing the video card, change the hdd for an sdd.... )

Appreciate your help, thanks...

Alessandro

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September 13, 2011 12:16:20 PM

You "Can" upgrade a bit only, but mostly its true you need a new system.
In case you dont want to, here is my advice:

-Check PSU first, to know how much power it can handle.
-Get a nvidia gtx 460 768mb ram (cheapest version you can so that its somewhere close to your cpu effectivness. Also you could get this gpu cheap enought nowdays i think, and going a GTX260 seems a bit... strange now :D . Remmber that Win Xp is a DX9 system if i remmber right, so unless you get vista, you wont get DX10 and 11).
-Get 2 extra gigs ram
-Get a good cpu cooler (futureproof would be best option) and oc cpu.

Now, i dont know if ati gpus can take off the physx off from the cpu in the current generations, but i know nvidia can.
Since your CPU is what will be the bottleneck, getting that extra work off from the cpu will get you some more headroom.

Thats my advice.
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September 13, 2011 12:19:04 PM

A new system is not essential, but to be honest it would be a far wiser choice than spending $$ on a system still running XP and a few generations old.
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September 13, 2011 12:19:35 PM

Sadly, if you need a new mobo, cpu and GPU. It's more of a buying new system than an upgrade.
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September 21, 2011 3:19:46 AM

Thanks to all and sorry for the delay... I was having some University work...

@AdrianPerry: I'm buying from Panama city, Panama. Budget could be around $500. Power supply: generic 500W output...

The idea is not to change the mobo, because then he should be buying ram, cpu, gpu and would be too expensive.

I think the main thing would be to get a better gpu, some more ram, update xp to win7...
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September 23, 2011 1:40:21 AM

Best answer selected by -Alessandro-.
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