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Upgrade Advice

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October 24, 2011 8:52:06 AM

Hi Guys just bought a Dell 530 for £90 and was wondering if I could have some help on it upgrading it so I can game on it.
The Cpu is a Core 2 Duo E6550 @2.33ghz which I want to overclock if possible and will be buying a Corsair H50 cooler.
I am going to be upgrading it with a new Gpu which is a Asus GTX 550ti and I will be upgrading it with a 2x2gb Kingston Ram kit.
Would I need a better psu for the gpu and for overclocking? and could you guys suggest any different parts I should get or instead of the one ive picked out?
Thanks, in advance.

More about : upgrade advice

October 24, 2011 9:04:27 AM

Also the resolution im playing at is 1650x1080
a b K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 9:08:26 AM

what are your gpu, psu and cooler budgets?
Related resources
October 24, 2011 9:12:07 AM

de5_Roy said:
what are your gpu, psu and cooler budgets?


Well GPU under £100 and for the cooler £30 and for the ram drr2 800mhz im not sure £30-£40
October 24, 2011 9:12:57 AM

Oh and for the psu im not sure about £40
a b K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 9:15:36 AM

i forgot to ask you which website you're going to be using to buy the parts(need a general idea of price at your location.)
October 24, 2011 9:16:51 AM

Okay im from england so any sites like:
ebay.co.uk
Overclocker.co.uk
Novatech.co.uk - Preferable as they have a store near me were i can pick up from.
Ebuyer.co.uk
aria.co.uk
October 24, 2011 9:35:53 AM

4GB Corsair Memory (2x2GB) XMS2 DDR2 PC2-6400 (800) Dual Channel Desktop #36960 £ 35.20 £ 35.20
XFX ATI Radeon HD 6870 1024MB GDDR5 PCI-Express Graphics Card with Stalker PC Game #44533 £ 109.99 £ 109.99
430W Corsair Builder Series 430CX V2 Power Supply #42487 £ 28.99 £ 28.99
Coolermaster Hyper 212 Plus CPU Cooler #39577 £ 21.26 £ 21.26



Basket Total £ 195.44
Approx. Delivery £ 7.45
VAT £ 40.58
Total £243.47

Have your local store price match these.
October 24, 2011 9:39:58 AM

OK I am not great a pound to dollar conversions but I have upgraded a pre-built comptuter before.

1. Avoid the low-end ATI cards like the ATI 5450 like the plague - they are junk (I own one so I am not throwing rocks at anyone)

2. The minimum ATI card would be the 5770 but if you can swing it the 6850 is much better. The GTX 560 or even better the 560Ti are great cards for the money. If you are going to game, these would be the cheapest options available that still have some bang for the buck.

Tom's Hardware's recommendations are here: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-graphics-card-...

I know you are on a tight budget but if you can swing a 6850, 6950 1 GB or a 560Ti, you will be in the best world for gaming on a budget. These cards are only about $50 more than the cheaper and much less powerful options. The newer games will demand at least the 6850 or the 560Ti power to really enjoy them. I have heard good things about the 5770 but it is about $110 and you can get a 6850 for around $150 and it is much more powerful. The 560Ti is approximately the same price or a little more and it is a very good gaming card. With a 100 pound budget, you are very close to a 1GB ATI 6950 which would be your best choice (about equal with the GTX 560 Ti)

3. For a PSU, you could try the Corsair TX 650. Right now it is $65 after rebates on newegg (yes I know you probably have European computer supply stores - not newegg) which is somewhere around 30 pounds. Check you local UK suppliers

4. For a CPU cooler the Coolermaster Hyper 212 Evo is within your budget and is a capable CPU cooler. The Titan Fenir is also good but it is more expensive - Bit Tech regularly recommends the Titan Fenir (check their reviews, they are based in the UK).

5. Make sure your motherboard has an open PCI-E slot for the new video card (presumably you remove your old one but some computers just have PCI slots, not PCI-E slots)

6. The Corsair H50 is not that great a cooler. Look at the H60 and the preferably the H80 for pricing if you want the water cooling. The H60 and H80 are much better performers than the H50. You might do a quick check on the Noctua NH-D14, it is an amazing air cooler for about $80 USD (about 45 pounds approximately). the Titan Fenir is available in the UK and it is cheaper and it is a great air cooler. BE CAREFUL with the NH-D14 it is very large and it may not fit in your case. The Corsair H60 or H80 need to be checked also to see if your case will accommodate them. The Titan Fenir is smaller than the D14 but you will need to check it also.

Good luck with your new computer
October 24, 2011 9:44:06 AM



Excellent post. OP check pricing on the Corsair TX 650 PSU. It will run your system more easily because it has more head room. The 430W Corsair Builders PSU will also work, just not as well. It is a good recommendation though because it is near your budget.
October 24, 2011 9:51:01 AM

Indeed, the 650W PSU is one you could definitely recycle to your next build. The 430W might not if you're considering higher-end GFX cards in the future.
October 24, 2011 9:58:53 AM

Okay thanks for all the advice guys! Ill probably make a new thread when I have got the parts and have installed them, thanks again! ;D
a c 129 K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 10:20:37 AM

I am 90% sure you will not be able to overclock that PC, very few prebuilds allow for overclocking.
The BIOS is locked-up.

You would be better of getting a weaker GPU as the CPU @ 2.33GHz will bottleneck you ALOT! Save some money on this upgrade to get a whole new PC later on with the money you save.

Look at the Radeon HD6770. Thats about the absolute best I would go with a 2.33GHz Duel core.

What size PSU do you have?
October 24, 2011 11:34:24 AM

Novuake said:
I am 90% sure you will not be able to overclock that PC, very few prebuilds allow for overclocking.
The BIOS is locked-up.

You would be better of getting a weaker GPU as the CPU @ 2.33GHz will bottleneck you ALOT! Save some money on this upgrade to get a whole new PC later on with the money you save.

Look at the Radeon HD6770. Thats about the absolute best I would go with a 2.33GHz Duel core.

What size PSU do you have?


Im getting 650w OCZ psu
October 24, 2011 2:02:08 PM

Right Guys ive decided to get:
http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=MB... So that the BIOS wont be locked like the dell one so i can overclock it to 3.0ghz
http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=GX... Pretty good for the price I think personally
http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showproduct.php?prodid=MY... As I am getting the new mobo im not limited to ddr2 but I am limited up to speeds of 1333mhz with the ddr3
and for the overclocking do I really need a new cooler?
and do I to get a new psu?
a b K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 2:33:11 PM

tbh i don't really understand why you're upgrading an lga 775 system. you could have gotten a low end sandy bridge system or an phenom 2 + am3/am3+ system those would have been newer(may be cost a little more, but newer).
Quote:
and for the overclocking do I really need a new cooler? and do I to get a new psu?

imo you do need an aftermarket cooler because stock intel heatsink and fans can drive your cpus temperature in the 80-90s on load. an overclocked component draws more power than one on stock speed, that power heats up your cpu and you need to get the heat out of the cpu as fast and as efficiently as possible. a good cooler will dissipate heat faster and more efficiently than a stock cooler will. and since oc cpu and more powerful gpu use more power, you need a psu to supply that power to them and the rest of your system otherwise you risk damaging your system.
a c 129 K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 4:09:45 PM

Actually, Sandy Bridge Pentium duel core systems trun out cheaper than Socket 775 in my country. I agree with roy, go sandy bridge! 775 life is over... WAAAAYYYY over.
October 24, 2011 5:36:40 PM

Well the whole reason Im upgrading this one is because Ive already spent 90 quid on the dell so unless I can build a sandy bridge computer for 250 quid...
October 24, 2011 6:22:27 PM

Novuake said:
I am 90% sure you will not be able to overclock that PC, very few prebuilds allow for overclocking.
The BIOS is locked-up.

You would be better of getting a weaker GPU as the CPU @ 2.33GHz will bottleneck you ALOT! Save some money on this upgrade to get a whole new PC later on with the money you save.

Look at the Radeon HD6770. Thats about the absolute best I would go with a 2.33GHz Duel core.

What size PSU do you have?



You know you are right, I didn't even think about this. Dell most often uses CPUs in its builds that will not overclock. Thanks for being sharp enough to point this out. I should have thought about it a little more.

That being said, are you sure that going with a weaker GPU is advisable? I have had nothing but bad experiences with go GTX and ATI GPUs that are the cheaper versions.

October 24, 2011 6:39:00 PM

lewisjay1 said:
Well the whole reason Im upgrading this one is because Ive already spent 90 quid on the dell so unless I can build a sandy bridge computer for 250 quid...


Don't beat yourself up. Dell makes a good computer. Yes the Sandy bridge is much more powerful but you probably can game on your computer just fine.

Have some fun with this computer for about a year and Ivy Bridge will be coming out and it is a 35% improvement at least on Sandy Bridge. Take the time to learn how to build your own computer and start researching parts while you use your Dell. Save up some money in the mean time and you can upgrade a year from now and build your own Ivy Bridge system.

Let me give you a real-world story. I have a Sony Vaio which is even less powerful than your Dell and it is 8 years old. I bought a ZT Systems pre-built I-7 920 which was very fast and I was very happy with it. It was so much faster than my Vaio, there is no real comparison. I put my Sony Vaio and the Sony 19" monitor in the corner to collect dust.

I have a business and I put all of my records that I had on my Vaio on my 920 system and life was good until..... my house was robbed. They stole my 920 system but the thieves were very stupid. They took my 920 but the left my $600 HIPS HP 2475 monitor and took the old 19" Sony monitor (probably because it "looked" cool). Fortunately they also left my backup external drive.

I was able to transfer most of my important records from the Vaio to the external drive and I did a clean install on the Vail which greatly improved its speed. THE 8-YEAR OLD SLOW SONY VAIO saved my butt and did a great job keeping me going while I dealt with all of the insurance issues.

So a year from now when you build your new Ivy Bridge system, you will still be able to use the Dell as a backup computer or you may be able to help a relative by giving it to them. You will be able to get much more than 90 quid's enjoyment out of it (whatever a quid is ha, ha).

This is a true story of how a computer that is much slower than yours (it did not even have PCI-E slots) was a real blessing. You are way ahead of my backup computer. The dual-core CPUs are very reliable and I am pretty sure you can game with it if you have a powerful enough GPU.

Novuake is right also, you may not need a new PSU depending on which GPU you choose. You probably have a 430W PSU, Dell uses them a lot, check it and see.
a c 129 K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 7:34:18 PM

flong said:
You know you are right, I didn't even think about this. Dell most often uses CPUs in its builds that will not overclock. Thanks for being sharp enough to point this out. I should have thought about it a little more.

That being said, are you sure that going with a weaker GPU is advisable? I have had nothing but bad experiences with go GTX and ATI GPUs that are the cheaper versions.


The Motherboard is mostly the restricting part.

As for the GPU, I suggested a weaker GPU because of PSU size and its the easier and cheaper part to upgrade later on.
October 24, 2011 7:51:18 PM

The PSU I linked will run the 6870 no problem.
a c 129 K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 8:54:58 PM

FinneousPJ said:
The PSU I linked will run the 6870 no problem.


No it wont, AMD site recommends 500w, and that usually is cutting it close.
October 24, 2011 8:56:14 PM

Novuake said:
The Motherboard is mostly the restricting part.

As for the GPU, I suggested a weaker GPU because of PSU size and its the easier and cheaper part to upgrade later on.


I am changing the motherboard to a Gigabyte GA-G41MT-S2P which I hope I will be able to overclock and im upgrade my PSU anyway and im getting that cooler that was mentioned above.
a c 129 K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 9:01:29 PM

lewisjay1 said:
I am changing the motherboard to a Gigabyte GA-G41MT-S2P which I hope I will be able to overclock and im upgrade my PSU anyway and im getting that cooler that was mentioned above.


The G41 is a budget chipset and will not overclock well. But you will not find anything better from the 775 socket.
October 24, 2011 9:02:06 PM

flong said:
Don't beat yourself up. Dell makes a good computer. Yes the Sandy bridge is much more powerful but you probably can game on your computer just fine.

Have some fun with this computer for about a year and Ivy Bridge will be coming out and it is a 35% improvement at least on Sandy Bridge. Take the time to learn how to build your own computer and start researching parts while you use your Dell. Save up some money in the mean time and you can upgrade a year from now and build your own Ivy Bridge system.

Let me give you a real-world story. I have a Sony Vaio which is even less powerful than your Dell and it is 8 years old. I bought a ZT Systems pre-built I-7 920 which was very fast and I was very happy with it. It was so much faster than my Vaio, there is no real comparison. I put my Sony Vaio and the Sony 19" monitor in the corner to collect dust.

I have a business and I put all of my records that I had on my Vaio on my 920 system and life was good until..... my house was robbed. They stole my 920 system but the thieves were very stupid. They took my 920 but the left my $600 HIPS HP 2475 monitor and took the old 19" Sony monitor (probably because it "looked" cool). Fortunately they also left my backup external drive.

I was able to transfer most of my important records from the Vaio to the external drive and I did a clean install on the Vail which greatly improved its speed. THE 8-YEAR OLD SLOW SONY VAIO saved my butt and did a great job keeping me going while I dealt with all of the insurance issues.

So a year from now when you build your new Ivy Bridge system, you will still be able to use the Dell as a backup computer or you may be able to help a relative by giving it to them. You will be able to get much more than 90 quid's enjoyment out of it (whatever a quid is ha, ha).

This is a true story of how a computer that is much slower than yours (it did not even have PCI-E slots) was a real blessing. You are way ahead of my backup computer. The dual-core CPUs are very reliable and I am pretty sure you can game with it if you have a powerful enough GPU.

Novuake is right also, you may not need a new PSU depending on which GPU you choose. You probably have a 430W PSU, Dell uses them a lot, check it and see.


Yeah my idea was for this system was to play games casually until I had saved up about 1200 for a ivy bridge pc, and im sorry to hear what happened to you :/ 
October 24, 2011 9:03:56 PM

Novuake said:
The G41 is a budget chipset and will not overclock well. But you will not find anything better from the 775 socket.


Yeah but still I should hopefully be able to get it up to 3.00ghz right? with the cooler master 212 CPU cooler.
October 24, 2011 9:15:01 PM

Novuake said:
No it wont, AMD site recommends 500w, and that usually is cutting it close.


Yes, it will.
a c 129 K Overclocking
October 24, 2011 9:49:25 PM

lewisjay1 said:
Yeah but still I should hopefully be able to get it up to 3.00ghz right? with the cooler master 212 CPU cooler.


Yes you should if you get a stable chip.
October 25, 2011 2:59:56 AM

Depending on what you are planning to do with your Ivy Bridge build, you could buy your Ivy Bridge PSU right now. The Corsair HX 850 has 7-year warranty and here in the states it can be purchased very cheaply. The HX850 is the highest rated 850W PSU in existence by professional reviewers - it even beats Corsair's gold-rated AX 850 op to 75% capacity. It is modular and it will put out over 1000W and remain stable. It will power a two-card SLI/CF setup.

This would solve your PSU issue and you would have one of the best PSUs made for your Ivy Bridge build. I own the HX850 and I can tell you from first-hand experience, it is a superb PSU.

Remember to check if you CPU will overclock. I do not have experience with the dual-core CPUs. If your CPU is locked, it won't matter what motherboard you buy.

More importantly, you may not need to overclock the CPU to game. The dual-core CPUs are remarkably durable.

The RAM you get and the GPU will probably be more of a factor. Despite other posts to the contrary, I think that you need to get at least a 6850 or 560Ti. Here in the USA, these cards are fairly cheap and you can get them on sale for around $125-$140. I don't know much about the dual-core mobos though.


October 26, 2011 11:13:37 AM

flong said:
Depending on what you are planning to do with your Ivy Bridge build, you could buy your Ivy Bridge PSU right now. The Corsair HX 850 has 7-year warranty and here in the states it can be purchased very cheaply. The HX850 is the highest rated 850W PSU in existence by professional reviewers - it even beats Corsair's gold-rated AX 850 op to 75% capacity. It is modular and it will put out over 1000W and remain stable. It will power a two-card SLI/CF setup.

This would solve your PSU issue and you would have one of the best PSUs made for your Ivy Bridge build. I own the HX850 and I can tell you from first-hand experience, it is a superb PSU.

Remember to check if you CPU will overclock. I do not have experience with the dual-core CPUs. If your CPU is locked, it won't matter what motherboard you buy.

More importantly, you may not need to overclock the CPU to game. The dual-core CPUs are remarkably durable.

The RAM you get and the GPU will probably be more of a factor. Despite other posts to the contrary, I think that you need to get at least a 6850 or 560Ti. Here in the USA, these cards are fairly cheap and you can get them on sale for around $125-$140. I don't know much about the dual-core mobos though.


Thanks for your reply, I have seen many thread on different forums about overclocking the E6550 and every single one has said you can so i should be alright.
!