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Can i upgrade to amd 6850-6870 without replacing CPU etc.

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February 2, 2012 8:32:32 PM

i have been wanting to upgrade my graphics card for awhile but i worry that i may have to replace a lot of different parts i only have a small amount of money free for the card considering i am guessing that i will have to buy a new power supply as well

so in short i want to try to get the best card i can get for my current system without upgrading anything else other than power supply (if at all possible) i was hoping to get something along the lines of the AMD 6850-6870.

my computer is a acer aspire m3900, the processor is a pentium dual-core cpu E5500 2.80ghz and i have 6gb or ram and my motherboard is a acer eg43m and currently only have the intel integrated graphics card.

More about : upgrade amd 6850 6870 replacing cpu

February 3, 2012 1:04:13 AM

what rating is your power supply, and do you know if it is a quality one? Which company is it from? Does it say 80%+ efficient on it?I can't find any benchmarks for your e5500 cpu, but looking at Tom's hardware's CPU reviews, they have grouped it down near an Athlon x2 6000+, that can't be much good, if anything, i would perhaps recommend a balanced upgrade between your cpu, and graphics card. If your power supply is of bad quality then it seems like you will need a total overhaul of your computer.
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February 3, 2012 1:26:50 AM

if i remember correctly the power supply is only a 350 watt that came with the computer so i knew id have to replace that . i had already figured that i would need to replace that regardless seeing as how low the watts are. was mainly curious about the CPU i to could not find much info on it. I was hoping to get by with just buying a power supply and a graphics card but after some thought was worried about the CPU. after some searching it did not appear that the cpu was TERRIBLE but i also have no idea what would be the best graphics card to pair it with before it becomes a waste of money?

if i cant make good use of any decent GPU without upgrading the CPU what budget combination would you recommend?

thanks for the help ^_^
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a c 175 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 3, 2012 4:41:35 AM

Probably the max you can get is 6770 without bottleneck.
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February 3, 2012 4:57:14 AM

that was actually one of the first models i started looking at (been wanting to upgrade to SOMETHING for months) but i managed to get a few extra dollars so wanted to push for something that would be a bit more powerful. but with the economy being what it is i dont know that i could justify completely overhauling the computer i just got like last year. so if thats about the best i can do then i might look into it or wait till i can afford more parts.

any more info would be greatly appreciated as well thank you both for the helpful answers
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a b U Graphics card
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February 3, 2012 5:18:37 AM

It really depends on what you are playing & what is your monitor resolution? If you are not playing on 1920x1080, you might do with a graphics card that does not require a PSU upgrade like AMD HD6670. This looks good to me:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
But if you aim for 1920x1080, then you really need to get a more powerful card & a new PSU.

Your CPU is fine. It may bottleneck your GPU but it should be able to play at decent frame rates. The important thing is to invest in good graphics card & good PSU because you can always bring these components to your future build when you got the budget.
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February 3, 2012 1:49:44 PM

What is your budget give or take 10%-/+ I think you will need a CPU upgrade.
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February 3, 2012 5:14:56 PM

my budget was around $250-300 though 300 is pushing it my resolution is 1280x720 on my main monitor atm (i use my TV from black Friday 2 years ago for a monitor). though later on down the line i DEFINITELY need to replace my second monitor which is some crappy 13 inch relic lol.i was thinking it may be worth it to get a better GPU even if it bottlenecks then when i can afford it upgrade the CPU or would that not work? so far i KNOW im replacing the PSU and the GPU so thats a large chunk of my budget and if i were to buy a CPU id rather it not be something that will need to be replaced sooner than later.i had hopes that i could buy decent parts now that i could then later combine with other good parts to make an even more powerful machine when the time comes. but any and all advice is welcome. this is actually my first type trying to do this kind of thing and i learn fairly quick so any tips for this kind of thing would be great
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February 3, 2012 6:09:15 PM

I'm still sticking with the idea you need to upgrade your CPU, your GPU, and your power supply. is your case big enough for an upgrade? You'll have to convert these currencies to dollars, you can get a nice power supply for around £60, you can get yourself an Intel Core 2 processor around or under £100, get yourself a graphics card around or under £100. You can definitely get an AMD 6850 for £100. if you had an AMD socket tbh the upgrade possibilities would have been alot more attractive, because Core 2 is phased out and Intel are very expensive; for around £100 the best you can get is another Core 2 Duo, let alone a Core 2 Quad unless you can find one.

Your case is a micro atx am i right, that also squeezes your upgrade possibilities. I suggest if you want to upgrade you'll have to make a completely new build, if you want to play games above 2006 -2010. I have a Cooler Master Elite 342, it's a micro atx as well, but it has plenty of space for even the longest of graphics cards.
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February 3, 2012 6:54:59 PM

idk what the exact case is called it is a production model so its the generic Acer Aspire m3900 case the dimensions are 7.09 in x 14.92 in x 15.82 in (WxHxD) that was pulled from a spec sheet. so you dont think i could be able to use the current CPU for much? im kinda against just rebuilding everything with a new box because this computer was a gift from my gf. so i dont want to be like wow thanks so much for the computer im going to get rid of it for a new one lol
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February 3, 2012 8:35:06 PM

http://support.acer.com/acerpanam/desktop/2010/acer/asp...

Does it look like that?

What games do you want to play on it? Still note that even with a 6850 you won't be able to play some of the latest games on their full potential settings (getting a smooth frame rate). I'm not at all saying that the card isn't powerful enough, but that alot of these games are inefficient concerning graphics visuals and performance, they look great still doesn't justify the poor performance. perhaps you want a lower end video card like a 5700 or 6700, get a card that doesn't require a PCI express cable. Maybe you'll still need a power supply upgrade because you can't risk using the OEM one, you can only be sure that it was designed to be used with the stock components already inside the case.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 3, 2012 9:48:29 PM

L33TSQU1RR3L said:
idk what the exact case is called it is a production model so its the generic Acer Aspire m3900 case the dimensions are 7.09 in x 14.92 in x 15.82 in (WxHxD) that was pulled from a spec sheet. so you dont think i could be able to use the current CPU for much? im kinda against just rebuilding everything with a new box because this computer was a gift from my gf. so i dont want to be like wow thanks so much for the computer im going to get rid of it for a new one lol

Wow, such a very nice girlfriend. Did she realize the PC she gave you will be a rival for your attention & affection? :lol: 

Joking aside, your best options at this time is to buy a GPU. I bet your motherboard only have a single PCIe so a 6870 is better option as 6850 might fall off in terms of performance in some scenario. But if you have plan to change motherboards in the future & crossfire, the 6850 is better bang for back. A good power supply should be in the range of 650-750W which should support crossfire. So you can spend the ~$300 between:
XFX/MSI 6870 Dual Fan $189.99:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
or
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(Both have mail-in rebate which is not yet discounted from the $189.99 price but MSI is free shipping)

and this:
Corsair TX 650 W $89.99:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(have mail in rebate which is not yet discounted from the $89.99 & free shipping)

By the way, I think your Case is a bit cramped so please take actual measure of the available space for the Graphics card & the dimension of the XFX or MSI. You also must consider how the PCIe connectors are placed in the card. If they are placed at the end, it might require more space from the HDD area. At the top is better. Unfortunately, it can not be viewed from the newegg site but it should be visible if you check professional reviews on the graphics cards.
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February 4, 2012 12:12:15 AM

he's using an OEM computer, the motherboard won't have the faculties to do SLI/ Crossfire X. He'll have to buy a single video card, and take into account whether it will fit inside the case or not.
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February 4, 2012 6:42:33 PM

sorry for the late reply was away from my computer. but yes that is the exact case that mine has. as for the games i want to play i have a few in mind im interested in starcraft 2 (because alot of my friends are into it) and also perhaps diablo 3 when it comes out (same reason) so pretty much just games like that atm

btw this is kinda a somewhat view of whats in the case http://support.acer.com/acerpanam/desktop/2010/acer/asp...

though it also shows the other 'options' aswell it says "PCI Express® x16 slot,
PCI Express® x1 slot ,Two PCI slots "

@Randomkid my gf was a hardcore WOW players a few years ago so she understands the amount of time that can be spent on a computer .but since we have similar interests we can share that time together ^_^

as for measuring the actual space inside ill have to get on that atm i do not know
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 4, 2012 9:53:17 PM

L33TSQU1RR3L said:
sorry for the late reply was away from my computer. but yes that is the exact case that mine has. as for the games i want to play i have a few in mind im interested in starcraft 2 (because alot of my friends are into it) and also perhaps diablo 3 when it comes out (same reason) so pretty much just games like that atm

btw this is kinda a somewhat view of whats in the case http://support.acer.com/acerpanam/desktop/2010/acer/asp...

though it also shows the other 'options' aswell it says "PCI Express® x16 slot,
PCI Express® x1 slot ,Two PCI slots "

The link does not provide the exact information because it includes all the possible options about graphics cards but not the one you already have.
ATI Radeon™ HD 5450 with 512 MB of dedicated DDR3 VRAM
ATI Radeon™ HD 5570 with 1024 MB of dedicated DDR3 VRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® 315 with 512 MB of dedicated DDR3 VRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 320 with 1024 MB of dedicated DDR3 VRAM
NVIDIA® GeForce® GT330 with 2 GB of dedicated DDR2 VRAM

Try installing CPU-Z to identify your exact GPU as well as the mainboard. If you already got a discrete card in there, chances are it should play nicely on your 1280x720 resolution.

L33TSQU1RR3L said:

@Randomkid my gf was a hardcore WOW players a few years ago so she understands the amount of time that can be spent on a computer .but since we have similar interests we can share that time together ^_^

So sweet. I have to do the dishes before my wife allow me to play Star Craft. :lol: 
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February 4, 2012 11:30:14 PM

ah i think i already listed the mother board but the graphics card is the integrated one so nothing but this is the info

mother board :
Manufacturer Acer
Model EG43M (CPU 1)
Chipset Vendor Intel
Chipset Model G45/G43
Chipset Revision A3
Southbridge Vendor Intel
Southbridge Model 82801JR (ICH10R)
Southbridge Revision 00

and for the graphics Intel G45/G43 Express Chipset i took some pictures of the inside of my case so you guys could perhaps get a better idea of what im working with ill edit this post and add them when i upload them

here they are http://profile.imageshack.us/user/l33tsqu1rr3l/
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 5, 2012 2:51:58 AM

Okay, the picture helped a lot.
For one thing, we know that you have room for even a long graphics card. But the power supply surely do not have the PCIe connector for high powered grpahics card so you might really need to replace it.
Fortunately, you don't need to because you can just get an HD 6670 if playing just on a 1280x720. In fact, HD 6670 is good up to 1680x1050 so you can even set higher setting on your 1280x720 TV monitor.
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February 5, 2012 3:31:52 AM

well the current power supply is only rated for 300 watts and im very new at this but i do not think that is much. so im fine upgraded that to something a little more decent and if i CAN get a better graphics card (even if its a bit past what i can fully use right now) that would be nice that way if/when i do upgrade to another computer (or monitor) i can carry it over and crossfire it or something if at all possible. but if all else fails the HD 6670 does not sound like too bad of a card. would the 6670 be able to run newer games at my current resolution with good results?
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a c 198 U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 5, 2012 4:06:05 AM

Just throwing it out there, but thats a prettty good cooling fan for a stock Acer Aspire system.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 5, 2012 4:39:00 AM

L33TSQU1RR3L said:
well the current power supply is only rated for 300 watts and im very new at this but i do not think that is much. so im fine upgraded that to something a little more decent and if i CAN get a better graphics card (even if its a bit past what i can fully use right now) that would be nice that way if/when i do upgrade to another computer (or monitor) i can carry it over and crossfire it or something if at all possible. but if all else fails the HD 6670 does not sound like too bad of a card. would the 6670 be able to run newer games at my current resolution with good results?

@1280x720? Sure. But like I said, a 5670 will be $20 cheaper & will run only 2-3 fps behind the 6670. Your 300W OEM Power supply should be able to handle it just fine.
Unless you upgrade your monitor to 1920x1080, any investment more than this 5670/6670 will be wasted, in my opinion, because you won't need more than this at 1280x720. Better save your money & by the time you need the upgrade, there will be newer parts & prices have fallen so your $ could buy more than what it could today.
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February 5, 2012 5:54:26 AM

@Deemo13 yea that cooling fan did seem a lot better than i would have expected.

@randomkid that makes sense newer products mean older products will be cheaper i hadn't really thought of that. was just worried about buying something and it being just shy of what i needed to play recent games. if my stock PSU can run that it will definitely save on the money as well. are there any specific models you'd recommend as far as which 5670/6670 to go for?
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 5, 2012 6:21:55 AM

Here is a good HD 6670 option. It cost the same as the available HD5670 in newegg so I recommend it being best bang for buck even before the $10 mail in rebate.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It does have poor review but I do not pay attention too much to it. Many reviews are scripted to boost or degrade a brand/product reputation depending on who's writing it.

I have 2x4770 Power Color graphics cards for my kids' PC & has been working fine for more than 2 years. It does not falter a bit so I can vouch for Power Color.
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February 5, 2012 12:42:54 PM

He's playing RTS games, and as far as i know RTS games don't really use more than 30 FPS if Diablo 2 is like Command & Conquer. He could use a budget of $300 i think of upgrading all three; he's cpu, his graphics card and his psu. He won't need the 6850. I think an upgrade of all three hardware is imperative
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February 5, 2012 3:17:02 PM

well i can already play really lower end games i can play WOW fine for the most part as is. its not just rts that i will probably play those are just the ones that spring to mind and its diablo 3 im wanting to play not diablo 2 . im sure i could already play diablo 2 as old as it is. ive seen other forums where guys with very similar rigs as mine were running pretty high graphics cards with just a PSU upgrade. but what would you recommend for 300 dollars nashafc
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February 6, 2012 12:11:21 AM

try and find a good dual core cpu in the 7000 or 8000 series for Core 2 duo. Because you have an Intel CPU and it is a socket 775, it is going to be harder to look for an attractive CPU, and one that is available to buy. Have a look on ebay.com or somewhere for a Core 2 Duo e8400, for some games that CPU would be better than my Phenom ii x3 720. I've seen some for under $100 second hand and $130 new. Look for an 80% plus efficient power supply, around 400 - 500 watts, because you're not going to be needing that much power at all, certainly not with a core 2 duo and a single AMD mid-high end card. As time goes by if you want to upgrade, AMD always delivers on energy efficiency for their graphics cards for mid-high end range you can just upgrade your card without a power supply upgrade. The rest of the money is for the graphics card, i think you can get by with $300 on a computer upgrade quite gratifying.
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February 6, 2012 5:34:03 AM

i really wouldnt mind spending the money if it was indeed a major boost to performance. you dont think the 6670 by itself would even work at all or are you stating that it would be more worth it to go above and beyond that? as time goes by i am trying to pinch pennies here and there cutting expenses where i can so the amount i can spend is going up and down depending on the day/week. so im just trying to get an idea of what would work if getting JUST the 6670 would work then its at least good to have it on the table leaves me more money that can go towards other things i need .i desperately need a new mouse and other non computer things. but if the 6670 wouldnt work or upgrading everything would just be THAT much better that its worth it then i can probably do that. seems you guys opinion vary so just trying to get a better of what your saying of the other opinions lol
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 6, 2012 10:26:41 AM

L33TSQU1RR3L said:
i really wouldnt mind spending the money if it was indeed a major boost to performance. you dont think the 6670 by itself would even work at all or are you stating that it would be more worth it to go above and beyond that? as time goes by i am trying to pinch pennies here and there cutting expenses where i can so the amount i can spend is going up and down depending on the day/week. so im just trying to get an idea of what would work if getting JUST the 6670 would work then its at least good to have it on the table leaves me more money that can go towards other things i need .i desperately need a new mouse and other non computer things. but if the 6670 wouldnt work or upgrading everything would just be THAT much better that its worth it then i can probably do that. seems you guys opinion vary so just trying to get a better of what your saying of the other opinions lol

You don't have to decide about the CPU now & at your current resolution, you will do very well with just the 6670. But if you plan to upgrade the monitor soon to a 1920x1080, then invest in a better graphics card & power supply. CPU should always be last because it entails the biggest expense because you have to replace motherboard & ram with it. Don't go for any more 775 processor. It is 3 generations back & soon will be 4. Save your money for the latest components & you will get better bang for your buck.
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a b U Graphics card
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February 6, 2012 1:49:30 PM

www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/98?vs=78
http://ark.intel.com/products/42800/Intel-Pentium-Proce...(2M-Cache-2_80-GHz-800-MHz-FSB)
as you can see that my athlon 7750 is above e5300 (means it is near yours e5500).
I have 6770 and playing mw2,mw3,gta4,l4d,jc2 etc at 1920x1200x75hz and get good fps at medium to high settings (all filltering, antialiasing are off) but cpu is holding my 6770 (even after overclocking to 3.2ghz).
Also at 720p gpu do less work (i get same fps at 1200p and at 720p in most games)
and thus at 720p 6670 is enough and is a good match,

but for future build 6750 is a nice option to start your consideration with, if you want to play phyx games then 550ti will make your cpu free from phyx processing and thus will decrease cpu bottleneck
and if you want then you can get 560 also instead of 550ti

but you will need a new psu

also you will see huge huge difference between g45 and 6670
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February 6, 2012 2:10:24 PM

I was thinking he could get by on a budget of $300 for an e8400 and a Radeon 6770 and a power supply upgrade. It would be out of his budget if he were to upgrade his motherboard as well to al LGA1155. I think he wants an upgrade quite soon. He will see alot of performance increase from an e5500 to an e8400 definitely, if he can search for a core 2 quad at a good price then even better. I have a phenom ii, and i think the core 2 quad is excellent, it's more efficient than phenom ii still (energy efficiency and performance for frequency), the only down point is price, and it's compatibility. Are you kidding me they were supporting/ boasting core 2 Quad for games like Crysis, Core 2 Quad 3Ghz rivals the i7 920, which was quite popular.
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February 6, 2012 5:49:17 PM

ok so if i want something to get me by for now to play at my current resolution cheap just get the 6670 and if i want an upgrade for not so cheap but without upgrading the mobo and everything i can do what Nashafc suggested?

@randomkid so if i were to get a PSU and better GPU now with the plan of getting a new CPU and MOBO in the future what would you recommend then? would everything still work ok till i did the upgrade of the mobo and CPU (im guessing there would be plenty of bottlenecking but other than that)
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February 6, 2012 6:12:01 PM

why are you talking about a 6670 you should easily be able to buy a 6770 with that budget. I'm looking at them for under $130, or if not buy a 5770, it's about 1-2 FPS slower for all games pfft lol 1-2 FPS slower. If you buy a core 2 quad you won't be bottlenecked for the future, I don't know any games that will use more than 4 cores, until say next 3 - 4 years time. The most modern games of today are still using 2 cores. You will probably have to end up with Core 2 Duo though, because Core 2 Quad will be hard to find.
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February 6, 2012 6:49:57 PM

i was talking about the 6670 because randomkid was stating that i could run that without even upgrading the PSU thus being the CHEAPEST option available then he stateted i could go HIGHER end on the GPU but would then need to replace the PSU (which i can afford to do) so i was essentially just laying out the different ideas you guys have laid out for me

1. the cheapest being just getting the 6670
2.getting a new psu and a higher end GPU then when i can afford it a new CPU and MOBO
3.as you stated keeping my current mobo and upgrading the CPU and the GPU and PSU

in essence i was just trying to clarify the options you guys are laying out for me as there have been many
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February 6, 2012 8:08:55 PM

yes actually i agree that it might be better for you to buy a 6670 in that case and in the future you can upgrade to a whole new system altogether. You won't need to spend money on a temporary expensive upgrade, noticing that you are soon going to upgrade to another expensive option.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 7, 2012 12:29:24 AM

Nashsafc said:
yes actually i agree that it might be better for you to buy a 6670 in that case and in the future you can upgrade to a whole new system altogether. You won't need to spend money on a temporary expensive upgrade, noticing that you are soon going to upgrade to another expensive option.

+1. And at 1280x720, the 6670 is really all he needs.
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February 7, 2012 1:55:15 AM

sounds like it makes pretty good sense if it will run everything i need at my current resolution. im unlikely to get another monitor right now as that is farther down on my list of things to get. i enjoy using my tv as a monitor since i dont have cable in my room anyway. well seeing as ill likely be going with the cheapest option does it matter WHICH 6670 i get or should i just go with the cheapest option?
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 7, 2012 2:50:47 AM

I recommended the cheapest option earlier and I repost below:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

It does have poor review but I do not pay attention too much to it. Many reviews are scripted to boost or degrade a brand/product reputation depending on who's writing it.

I have 2x4770 Power Color graphics cards for my kids' PC & has been working fine for more than 2 years. It does not falter a bit so I can vouch for Power Color.
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a b U Graphics card
a b ) Power supply
February 7, 2012 3:07:48 AM

^Sure. But the Power Color also have mail in rebate although not free shipping. So the cost will be about the same. But it is interesting to notice that XFX fan is smaller than the PowerColor. So I predict the XFX will either be hotter or noisier than the power color. I will still go for the power color.
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February 7, 2012 3:54:06 AM

well i appreciate the help you guys have been very helpful ill probably make my decision about which to get tomorrow hope all goes well and ill start saving up for the big upgrades
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