Upgrade Pentium D 2.8?

Dell XPS400/9150
Pentium D
80547 Smithfield PN 9441 820 SKT-T male
2.8 GHz L2 2MB
3 GB DDR2 RAM
4 PCI slots open
RAID (I don't remember-both HDD's running for performance)
256 Radeon X600 MRMGA+
Currently running W7 Ultimate
19" Compaq FS940 1024x728

I'd like to upgrade this computer with bigger cpu and a dedicated 1 GB gpu. I do some primitive gaming, 32 bit stuff mostly, surf quite a bit and occasionally watch past episode TV or DVD movie. And when I'm surfin' I usually multitask. Most of the new computers I look at start at $1200 and go up from there. Why not just upgrade this old machine? Recommendations and opinions are what I seek.
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More about upgrade pentium
  1. You might want to look at the PSU, according to the first link, it's 375W, and most modern GPUs need 450W or more

    http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/xps400/sm/specs.htm

    Moving on, it has an Intel 945P chipset, so this link provides all the compatible CPUs that can go on that chipset (click on Compatible Products on the left side):

    http://ark.intel.com/products/chipsets/8764
  2. charlesassless said:
    Most of the new computers I look at start at $1200 and go up from there. Why not just upgrade this old machine?


    Because Dell (and most other OEMs) deliberately make it difficult to upgrade. They'd rather have you buy a new $1,200 computer from them than order a new CPU from Newegg.

    Like ... that motherboard may have a chipset CAPABLE of supporting a better processor, but unless Dell has put out a BIOS update to support additional processors on that board, you're stuck with what they gave you. And guess what, they usually don't put out updates if they can help it. Same with power supplies - they don't leave you much wiggle room to add a better video card; they sometimes use proprietary connectors and sometimes they'll make the form factor an issue (as with the slimline cases).

    Anyway ... the $1,200 computers you're looking at, I'd be willing to bet you could put together a better machine yourself for $700 and leave yourself an upgrade path if you wanted one. Basically, there are two choices - if buying from Dell is the way you do things, resign yourself to paying for a new machine every time you want to do a significant upgrade. If you don't like that idea, build it yourself.
  3. scottiemedic said:
    You might want to look at the PSU, according to the first link, it's 375W, and most modern GPUs need 450W or more

    http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/xps400/sm/specs.htm

    Moving on, it has an Intel 945P chipset, so this link provides all the compatible CPUs that can go on that chipset (click on Compatible Products on the left side):

    http://ark.intel.com/products/chipsets/8764


    Thanks for your information.
  4. capt_taco said:
    Because Dell (and most other OEMs) deliberately make it difficult to upgrade. They'd rather have you buy a new $1,200 computer from them than order a new CPU from Newegg.

    Like ... that motherboard may have a chipset CAPABLE of supporting a better processor, but unless Dell has put out a BIOS update to support additional processors on that board, you're stuck with what they gave you. And guess what, they usually don't put out updates if they can help it. Same with power supplies - they don't leave you much wiggle room to add a better video card; they sometimes use proprietary connectors and sometimes they'll make the form factor an issue (as with the slimline cases).

    Anyway ... the $1,200 computers you're looking at, I'd be willing to bet you could put together a better machine yourself for $700 and leave yourself an upgrade path if you wanted one. Basically, there are two choices - if buying from Dell is the way you do things, resign yourself to paying for a new machine every time you want to do a significant upgrade. If you don't like that idea, build it yourself.


    It used to be that whenever my machine started to take too much downtime, I could upgrade the next one for less $ than the previous one. That trend is reversing. This was my first Dell and lasted just as long as the other brands. I'll ask some of the locals what they'd charge me to assemble a newer/faster machine. I'd probably go for something like my current HP desktop replacement notebook but with faster processor and 8GB RAM, I think a 1 GB gpu would still be fast enough for my needs. NVidia GT130 is what I have now. I'd add a 7600 rpm hdd as well.
  5. charlesassless said:
    Dell XPS400/9150
    Pentium D
    80547 Smithfield PN 9441 820 SKT-T male
    2.8 GHz L2 2MB
    3 GB DDR2 RAM
    4 PCI slots open
    RAID (I don't remember-both HDD's running for performance)
    256 Radeon X600 MRMGA+
    Currently running W7 Ultimate
    19" Compaq FS940 1024x728

    I'd like to upgrade this computer with bigger cpu and a dedicated 1 GB gpu. I do some primitive gaming, 32 bit stuff mostly, surf quite a bit and occasionally watch past episode TV or DVD movie. And when I'm surfin' I usually multitask. Most of the new computers I look at start at $1200 and go up from there. Why not just upgrade this old machine? Recommendations and opinions are what I seek.

    Personally don't think it's worth it, ain't my money though
    PentiumD only, upgrade to latest bios prior to making the swap
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116391
    With the card you're running almost anything will be an upgrade
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102976
    If it were me I'd spend the extra for the warranty upgrade, still end up under $100
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