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Updating an outdated build

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April 11, 2012 1:09:12 AM

Hi tom's hardware community! I have a question regarding updating an old build.

I built my first computer toward the end of 2008. I did a bunch of research and put together a moderate system that would handle my needs at the time. Aside from this project, I don't have a huge technical background, but I understand the basics.

I had taken a break from gaming for a while, so I hadn't come across any problems with performance, but I'm interested in getting back into it a little bit now. I don't really want to make an entirely new build if I can avoid it, so I was wondering, based on my current system, what would be the best way to increase performance if I find it's not holding up to what I need. I'd be looking to play things like LoL, Skyrim, Guild Wars 2, Kingdoms of Amalur, and other (relatively) current games. I don't need to be able to play on max settings or anything, but would ideally want to avoid dealing with frame rate dips that affect gameplay.

Would simply getting a newer graphics card be the best option? I know new processors wouldn't be compatible with the mobo, but I don't really have an understanding of where bottlenecks come into play or exactly how hardware reflects on performance related to current games. Or would it not be worth it to try to update this build and make more sense to just start over?

This is my current build:

CPU: Intel e8500
Mobo: ASUS P5Q Pro
RAM: OCZ Platinum 4GB
GPU: VisionTek Radeon HD 4870
PSU: Rosewill 630W
Case: Antec 900
HD: Western Digital 640GB
OS: Windows Vista 32

Thanks for any suggestions on how to get back into pc gaming with (or without) this rig!
a b B Homebuilt system
April 11, 2012 1:31:26 AM

You could spend a little less than $200 on a GPU and be okay. Might want to upgrade CPU and mobo eventually but you should be able to play newer games. Have you tried gaming on your current setup? Might be decent on lower settings I don't know if your card supports DX 11 though, I only see DX 10.1 in specs but the specs are all outdated because the card has been discontinued.
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April 11, 2012 1:02:08 PM

I haven't tried current gaming on this setup yet. I've been abroad for a while, so I haven't had access to this computer for some time, but I will soon. I'll give it a go and look to some newer GPUs if I wanna bump up performance. Thanks for advice, I appreciate it.
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Anonymous
a b B Homebuilt system
April 11, 2012 1:37:16 PM

that system is till good. get a 64 bit operating system and a heatsink for the cpu to overclock it to 3.8Ghz (easily with that cpu/mobo combo)
just upgrade the gfx.

decent upgrade under $200
XFX HD-687A-ZHFC Radeon HD 6870 $174.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
better upgrade over $200
EVGA 01G-P3-1561-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti $229.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
better still . .
XFX Double D HD-695X-CDFC Radeon HD 6950 $259.99
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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April 11, 2012 3:16:48 PM

*cringes @ your rosewill psu*

i hope you overclock that cpu! its actually a pretty nice cpu for a dualcore
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April 11, 2012 3:33:33 PM

neon neophyte said:
*cringes @ your rosewill psu*

i hope you overclock that cpu! its actually a pretty nice cpu for a dualcore


I haven't overclocked it in the past, but when I get back to it I think I'll try. I did some research right, but it was my first time building :) , would it be worth replacing the psu?
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April 11, 2012 3:37:23 PM

that sucker could go at anytime, then again it might not! welcome to the land of cheap psus! lol

always worth having a quality psu imo
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Anonymous
a b B Homebuilt system
April 11, 2012 5:47:52 PM

rosewells are fine PSUs. not the best but you ain't talking cooler master bad by far . . .

"Rosewill Green Series 630 W (RG630-S12) is a great choice for users looking for a good cost-effective solution."
Rosewill Green Series 630 W (RG630-S12) Power Supply Review

kindly post a review :) 
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