Upgrade my System? Or buy new computer?

I am currently using a Gateway FX4710-UB003A computer, it has an Intel Core 2 Quad 9300, 6 Gigs of Ram, a Creative X-Fi Sound card, and a 9800GT 512mb, and of course Windows 7. I think it has crappy 400W power supply. I run my games at 1920x1080.

I am looking to get more performance from my games but I'm not sure whether to just buy a new PC all together, or upgrade mine. I have built systems in the past and have no problem swapping out components.

My first question is, can I replace the power supply on this Gateway FX chassis? I ask this because I remember something about proprietary power supplies, I'm not sure if gateway is in on that though.

I would be upgrading the power supply and video card, is the Intel core 2 Quad 9300 still a good CPU at all? I want to believe that my crappy power supply and 9800GT are bottle necking it.

Second question: My Sound card is directly underneath my graphics card port, so getting a 2 slot card is out of the question unfortunately. So I need to know what the best Single slot Graphics card is, that doesn't have a protruding fan or heat sink. Think of it as a very tight fit.

I have been looking at a Radeon 6850 single slot but the cheapest online is about ~$250 online, which is almost 1/3rd the cost of a new PC. That single radeon 6850 has the form factor that I need though, no protruding heat sinks or anything. I basically am limited to that style, right now. Another Option I guess I can take out the X-Fi Sound card and use the on-board, although doesn't using a dedicated sound card increase game performance, since it takes the load off the CPU?

Would swapping out the crappy green generic RAM that came with this system, with some premium gaming RAM make a difference?

thanks in advance
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  1. 6850 is not 250$ is 150$ http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102908 i think you looked at 6950.
    If you have the budget buy a new PC , and keep the HDD and DVD-RW , sell q9300 they have a good price and make yourself a good gaming PC.
  2. From the sound of it your current system isn't worth upgrading for gaming. What would be your budget for a new system? If it's $500 or more, I'd say go for it.
  3. Thank you for the replies.

    I have over $1,000 to spend, I am looking at putting together a PC.

    Socket 1155 is the way to go, right?
  4. Lovecraft said:
    Thank you for the replies.

    I have over $1,000 to spend, I am looking at putting together a PC.

    Socket 1155 is the way to go, right?

    Socket 1155 is certainly the current socket of choice.

    $1k Budget is fairly generous and since you have a few re-usable components you should be able to build something fairly impressive and certainly capable of handling all current games.

    Z68/i5-2500k Mobo/CPU combo is pretty much a "must-have" pair it with the highest single GPU you can squeeze into budget (minimum GTX 560Ti/6950) and your away :)
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