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Upgrade advice [HP Pavilion a1530]

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October 8, 2011 6:01:38 AM

Hi, I want some advice on upgrading a computer. I have an HP Pavilion a1530n
I picked up at the dump. It boots up and seems to work fine so I decided to fix it for my Mom to use.

My idea was to replace the hard drive, max out the RAM and do a clean install of an OEM copy of Windows 7. The motherboard is running a Intel Pentium D 820 and from the online documemtion it looks like it won't support much of anything more.

My mom will be using this for online video and DVDs, internet and games probably not much more than Pop Cap level.

Here's my current parts list:
http://secure.newegg.com/WishList/PublicWishDetail.aspx...

So I have three questions:
1. Is this motherboard good enough for now?
2. Any problems with my parts list?
3. Will the onboard graphics be enough or would a cheap discerte video card be a good investment?
October 9, 2011 3:27:04 AM

Spending $200+ on a Pentium D system upgrade is a stretch...

Did the system have a working hard drive? If so it may have a restore partition with a working copy of XP. Going for a cheaper disk (say $50) gives you a workable system for much less than $200.

(At least the expensive parts (drive + win7) can be used on another PC.

As an alternative for your mom, a 15in laptop is $100 more then you are planning to spen on the pentium d system... http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

For your specific questions:

1. Is this motherboard good enough for now? == for email - sure.
2. Any problems with my parts list? Great drive, legal windows. Not sure if 32 or 64 is better for you... (64-bit much better if you plan to transfer this copy of windows to another MB/pc, 32-bit win7 might perform better than 64-bit on a Pentium D)
3. Will the onboard graphics be enough or would a cheap discrete video card be a good investment? Which games? How much wattage can you add (A series HP not known for throwing in oversize power supplies. The sticker on the PSU is a good place to check -- i didn't see wattage in specs you linked.) aside: Pentium D runs hot and draws power.
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