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Upgrade from Dual-Core to Quad-Core?

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March 29, 2012 7:56:26 AM

I hope this is in the right place. This is my first post, so please be kind. :D 

I built my machine probably around '05 and it has been great up until recently. I don't game heavily or anything like that, but I do watch a lot of dvds and video on it, so although I like the idea of something fresh and powerful, it isn't necessary. Anyway, here are my basic specs:

Intel(R) Pentium(R) 4 CPU 3.40GHz Dual-core

Microsoft Windows XP MCE

1GB RAM

Radeon X850 video card

WD 250gb HDD, WD 120gb HDD(running OS)



It probably looks like an Atari2600 to some of you, but it has been sweet to me. So should I build a new Quad-Core machine or maybe just upgrade my video card and some get more RAM? Any suggestions would be helpful. Thanks!
March 29, 2012 8:06:14 AM

You might need to go for a new machine. If your video card is AGP (I think the X series was iirc) you will struggle to find a replacement.

If you do have a PCIE video card, you could replace it and get 4 GB RAM.
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March 29, 2012 8:27:22 AM

Replace it. You have a budget?
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March 29, 2012 11:30:08 AM

bumnut53 said:
You might need to go for a new machine. If your video card is AGP (I think the X series was iirc) you will struggle to find a replacement.

If you do have a PCIE video card, you could replace it and get 4 GB RAM.


Maybe you could get aways with a 2nd hand Core2Duo, if your MB supports it. Be sure to check the MB site and see specifically if your MB HW revision supports Conroe (any Core2Duo, not just "dual core"). Core2Duo-supporting motherboards can provide some lower voltages required for the newer CPUs.

So you could get away with CPU, GPU and more RAM, but I really think you should change the whole package if you expect another 5-7 years of use. Also the PSU if it's the same age. But maybe quad-core is not needed (hint: I mean "core", not counting hyperthreading... i3 have 2 cores with HT and 4 CPUs are seen in OS). Anyway, if you will need quad core in the near future, you could probably replace it with a 2nd hand CPU later.
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March 29, 2012 7:32:09 PM

mathew7 said:
Maybe you could get aways with a 2nd hand Core2Duo, if your MB supports it. Be sure to check the MB site and see specifically if your MB HW revision supports Conroe (any Core2Duo, not just "dual core"). Core2Duo-supporting motherboards can provide some lower voltages required for the newer CPUs.

So you could get away with CPU, GPU and more RAM, but I really think you should change the whole package if you expect another 5-7 years of use. Also the PSU if it's the same age. But maybe quad-core is not needed (hint: I mean "core", not counting hyperthreading... i3 have 2 cores with HT and 4 CPUs are seen in OS). Anyway, if you will need quad core in the near future, you could probably replace it with a 2nd hand CPU later.



I see what you're saying, but if I could, I would rather replace everything except the processor. If I can't, then I'll go with a new build.


bumnut53 said:
You might need to go for a new machine. If your video card is AGP (I think the X series was iirc) you will struggle to find a replacement.

If you do have a PCIE video card, you could replace it and get 4 GB RAM.


Yes, that card was AGP, and my mobo does not have a PCIE slot. So is it possible to get a new mobo and video card while keeping this processor and still have a decent machine?

And no, at the moment I don't have a budget in place, but that is because I didn't plan for any of this.
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