Old Computer Overhaul

Hi all,

So here is the skinny on my situation:
I am a poor college student who needs a decent desktop for gaming. My laptop cannot really handle any games made past about 2005, and that is heartbreaking (Especially with SWTOR coming out soon). I am trying to save money and reduce costs every where I can. My family has an old old old Compaq 5423 (Thing is a dinosaur) that I am looking to gut and rebuild. I am hoping this will save me some money on a new case, and maybe some components (Optical Drive, etc). I do not need a blazing fast, amazing desktop; just one that can play games at decent specs and keep my wallet happy.

So here is my question:

What components would I need to replace and what components can I keep in order to bring the desktop up to decent gaming abilities? Again, my emphasis is on SAVING MONEY!!

I know this is an involved question, but I have never built a desktop and I am fairly new to computer gaming (always been a console kind of guy). I appreciate your help!

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More about computer overhaul
  1. Minimum requirements for SWTOR
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core 4000+ or better or Intel Core 2 Duo Processor 2.0GHz or better

    Operating System:
    Windows XP/Vista/7

    Windows XP: 1.5GB
    Windows Vista and Windows 7: 2GB
    PCs using a built-in graphical chipset are recommended to have 2GB RAM

    Graphics Card:
    ATI X1800 or better*
    nVidia 7800 or better*
    Intel 4100 Integrated Graphics or better*

    8x or better

    Which is absolute BS! They had similar requirements fir BF3 and I'm surprised you could get past the splash screen startup with specs like that. Even low quality settings and low res require a $150 to $200 video card and a stout CPU doesn't hurt either. New games require $$$ to play them enjoyably.
    What's your budget? Do you have a monitor, what resolution?
    I couldn't find any specs on the Compaq, but I doubt there are any usable parts if even the case.
  2. Budget is about $300 (give or take). I have a Vizio 19" LCD HDTV (Not sure on exact resolution...)


    Compaq 5423us

    As I usually get my games digitally, the CD Drive is not overly important to me (unless I would need it for something else...)

    Hope this helps. Thanks again.
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