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Dell Studio 540

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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December 27, 2011 5:31:50 AM

Hello! Happy Holidays! Hi! I have a Dell Studio 540 and I want to upgrade the graphics card/PSU or/and whatever is necessary to make it work to do a few things. First, I would like to play a few games like online shooters such as Combat Arms or even Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. But more importantly, I need to make sure it runs the entire Adobe Master Collection Suite such as Premiere Pro and After Effects with Hi-Res Photoshop files and Illustrator. Anyhow, Ill post the specs of what I currently have which would help answer my questions:

1. What is the best graphics card I can get without changing the PSU and of course be compatible with the rest of what I have (motherboard/ram/psu)? How much better would that graphics card be than the one I currently have and is it worth the upgrade in your opinion and why? (Keep in mind that I do want to run those CPU extensive programs and play some games/ upgrade to a Full HD monitor maybe in the future)

2. If I were to change the PSU to higher watt one, how much better of a graphics card would I be able to get? How much would it cost? Is it worth an upgrade in your opinion? Would it fit into my current chassis (Dell Studio 540: I believe its a mini-tower)? If I were to get a PSU that was slightly better which means it would cost about 80-100 dollars I believe, then is it worth the upgrade of the graphics card?

Also, I can put in my own PSU and RAM and hard disks, but I have never put in a graphics card. Im pretty tech savvy, but more in the software department than hardware, but Im still confident I can do things like this. however, is installing a graphics too complicated that it requires me to get a professional to help me and that would introduce new costs, so I should take that into consideration as well.

Anyhow, I was thinking of spending 150-200 dollars, but dont take this into consideration really. Please just tell me the graphics cards that would be compatible with the PSU and also some graphics cards that would require me to get a new power supply but one that would fit into my chassis. (This is basically a summary of my more detailed questions above)

Once again Happy Holidays to all! Hope you are in your good health and are happy :) 

Here are my current specs to help with my questions:

Operating System
Windows 7 Professional (x64) Service Pack 1 (Build 7601)

System Model
Dell Inc. Studio 540

Processor
2.33 gigahertz Intel Core2 Quad
64 kilobyte primary memory cache
2048 kilobyte secondary memory cache
64-bit ready
Multi-core (4 total)
Not hyper-threaded

Main Circuit Board
Board: Dell Inc. 0M017G A00
Bus Clock: 333 megahertz
BIOS: Dell Inc. 1.0.1 08/11/2008

Drives
500.05 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
434.40 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space

Hitachi HDP725050GLA360 [Hard drive] (500.11 GB) -- drive 0, s/n GEA550RE1UJ5UL, rev GM4OA5BA, SMART Status: Healthy

PLDS DVD+-RW DH-16A6S ATA Device [Optical drive]

Memory Modules
8192 Megabytes Usable Installed Memory

Slot 'DIMM1' has 2048 MB (serial number 03132F19)
Slot 'DIMM3' has 2048 MB (serial number 03132F1B)
Slot 'DIMM2' has 2048 MB (serial number 03132C13)
Slot 'DIMM4' has 2048 MB (serial number 03132F1D)

Controllers
ATA Channel 0 [Controller] (2x)
ATA Channel 1 [Controller] (2x)
Standard Dual Channel PCI IDE Controller (2x)

Display
ATI Radeon HD 3450 (Microsoft Corporation WDDM 1.1) [Display adapter]
DELL E207WFP [Monitor] (20.0"vis, s/n XX-0TW956-XXXXX-835-06TL, March 2008)

Power Supply Unit
Max Output: 350 Watts

Thank you guys very much!!! :D 

More about : dell studio 540

December 27, 2011 2:54:11 PM

Bump.
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December 27, 2011 5:06:08 PM

I was hoping for a faster reply lol...kinda was planning to go out and getting it today :D  Thanks guys!
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Related resources
a c 104 U Graphics card
December 27, 2011 5:34:24 PM

HD6670 with old psu.

GTX460 with new psu.

Not sure if it fits, think so.

It's easy to change a gpu, no need for a prof. When you take the old card out make sure you push the little lever on the end of the slot open.

For performance difference see hwcompare.
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December 28, 2011 2:27:25 AM

Lol. Sorry! New poster. Also what does claim first mean exactly? lol.
I mean if I am posting with a question and no one replies why would I claim first? I cant answer my own question lol.

Anyhow, so whats the best graphics card I can get without upgrading the PSU then. I mean the first poster said HD6770, but that requires 450 Watt PSU. I have a 350 installed.

What about this 520 Watt PSU?
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Dynex%26%23153%3B+-+520W+AT...

Will it fit into my chassis?

Also, if i do upgrade whats the best graphics card I could get with that PSU ^ (or something similar like it) BUT that is ALSO compatible with my motherboard and other peripherals?

THANKS!!!

EDIT: I don't necessarily need to have the PSU in my chassis, do I? I mean isnt it alright if its next to it? Or would the wires be too short to be able to attach to the motherboard/hard disks and so on? And to be honest this does look weird actually.

Thanks once again!
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December 28, 2011 4:52:45 AM

Hey guys! No one is replying so I looked some stuff up but Im not sure exactly.

Ok so if I did upgrade the PSU to around 600 Watts such as the ones below, what is the best graphics card I can get that would still work with my current motherboard and my computer in general?

600Watts:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Corsair+-+Builder+CX600+ATX...

650Watts
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Ultra+Products+-+Lifetime+S...

Btw, would one of these ^ PSU's work with my computer and would they fit in my chassis? Also, do you guys any different suggestions as to PSU and graphics? Also could you please provide links where I can get them.

Also I decided that I don't wanna spend too much. Like 200 dollars on both PSU/graphics card. Ill adjust ofc. Like 230 dollars is still fine. Something like that.

Thanks :) 
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December 28, 2011 5:13:04 AM

I measured my current PSU and these are the measurements:

3 and 3/8 inches x 5 and 1/2 inches x 5 and 7/8 inches
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a c 104 U Graphics card
December 28, 2011 10:25:52 AM

Sometimes people do sleep you know . . .

The link you gave is from the 6770 ; that one is to much for your psu, i was talking about a 6670, that one will run with your current psu.

You buy from the USA ?

For 200 bucks you can get something like this ;

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... / http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... / http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... / http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

and

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Make sure you have enough room for the gpu though.

Don't know nothing about inches i'm afraid, i believe you can check dimensions of products on Newgg somewhere, not sure though.
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a c 92 U Graphics card
December 28, 2011 10:30:37 AM

if you want to play mw3 you will probably do good to get a new psu and a more powerful card.

the gtx 460 is probably the minimal you'd want.
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a c 104 U Graphics card
December 28, 2011 10:45:21 AM

Yep, but if he goes higher he really should oc the cpu.
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December 28, 2011 2:22:32 PM

Ok guys this is much more helpful. :) 

1. Yes I live in New York City, USA.

2. I plan on going to the store to purchase rather than ordering online, but I will if its best. So for now I have these PSU and graphics card in mind:

PSU 600Watt
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Corsair+-+Builder+CX600+ATX...
To robjordy: You gave me a link to what seems to me the exact same PSU but 500 Watts, so I found one for 600Watts with the same dimensions as to fit into my chassis. Do you think the one I have posted right now is fine? Or should I definitely get the Corsair 500 instead from the link you gave me?

GTX 460
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/EVGA+-+GeForce+GTX+460+Grap...
To robjordy: This one I believe is the exact same graphics card you linked me with right? Could you please just do a quick check because I want to be 100% sure.

Second this one is 823MHz where as this one (10 dollars more) is 867MHz:
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/EVGA+-+GeForce+GTX+460+Grap...
So should I get this one instead? ^ Or is too fast or incompatible with my motherboard by any chance?

3. How will I know if the graphics cards will fit? I figured out the PSU size and I know they will fit, but what about graphics?

4. Over clocking the CPU? What information should I know about this?

Thanks guys! I'm really sorry about sounding rude before. I am just so excited about this I cant wait to get the rig together. You guys are awesome! Thanks :) 
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a c 104 U Graphics card
December 28, 2011 3:06:23 PM

You weren't rude, only impatience and i can understand that, i always am myself. :D 

The 500W is 30 bucks now with rebate and promo. With the 460 you don't need 600W only if you want the psu to be futureproof because you want to upgrade everything in the future and get a high end card you need 600W or more.

To be sure if it fits upload a photo of the inside of your case, but i did read someone put a gtx275 in it and those are pretty big also i believe.

You could pay 10 bucks more for the oc version but you can do that easily yourself and save the money, and yes ; your link is the same one as the newegg one.

Oc'ing the cpu i don't know much about, still have to try that with mine one of these days.
I'm sure there can be found a lot info for that on Tom's. Something like this i think ; http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/dual-41-ghz-cores-uk,revi...
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