After reading the benchmarks for skryim, I realized that there was no way in hell I'd be running the game. So now, I come here. I know I need to update my Graphics Card, and by doing so, I'd need to change the Power supply in my unit. I've never dealt with opening a computer, let alone upgrading the valuable components. So, i'd like a little advice.
1. What recommendations for parts do you have for me?
2. How, when changing the parts, would I go about not ******* things up with static?
Everything looks legit so far except the video card & power supply.
1) Look into any GTX 560 Ti video card.
2) Look for a reputable 500-600w power supply (Corsair, XFX, ANTEC to name a few)
3) Don't worry too much about static... Just make sure your hands are dry, you're not close to any water, and make sure there is NO POWER connected to the PC. If you can do those things, the rest is simply unplugging everything the PSU is connected to, swapping in the new one, and that's pretty much it.
The best way to deal with static is to mount the PSU in the case and then plug it in the wall. Tie an exposed wire around your wrist and attach it somewhere metal on the case. This will ensure that any static your carrying is gotten rid of by the PSU since its plugged into the ground in your wall.
Then just swap out the GPUs and plug everything that you unplugged from your old psu with the new one.
Finally, open up skyrim and kill some dragons!!! Make sure you uninstall ATI drivers if you're gonna buy an nvidia card and install nvidia's drivers instead.
Here are what are probably your best few options.Okay most likely HP put in a Motherboard with only 1 16x PCI-e connector so dual cards is not an option. If i were you get a GTX 560 TI and upgrade to a corsair 650w Enthusaist series supply. If you really want to future proof then go with the same PSU or the 750w model and pick up a GTX 570 (AMD Radeon 6970 if you have more than one display). You can go with any PSU you want so long as it is of quality and Gold certified are great too for energy purposes. Also if your arent into upgrading that much a third option would be to look for a GPU that your PSU can handle. Skyrim isnt that hard to run with the settings turned down significantly. Im running it on ultra 1920x1080 with a GTX 560 which my dell XPS 8300 460w Power supply can handle just fine. Maybe you can go with a GTX 550 ti but i wouldnt really reccomend that card for furture proofing and games like BF3. BE ADVISED SEEK ADVICE AND RESEARCH WHEN REPLACING A POWER SUPPLY AS IT CAN BE DANGEROUS I BURNED OUT MY DELL SYSTEM ONCE WHEN I WAS A NOOB AT COMPUTERS.