System Updates Needed - Any Recommendations?

Hey guys,

I built a PC for my brother back in 2006 and I think it's time that it receives some updates. Here are all of the components the system has. My question is: what remains usable? What immediately requires updating? I don't want to dump a ton of money into it, but I'd like to get him set up to at least play Diablo III comfortably.

The memory and HDD both seem lacking. How horribly dated is the graphics card? Are the motherboard and processor something that needs immediate attention? Does the system need a bigger PSU? I feel like I may have installed a 500W one after the fact, but would need to take a look at the machine. Here are the specs:

ASUS P5ND2-SLI LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 4 SLI Intel Edition ATX Intel Motherboard

Intel Pentium D 805 Smithfield 2.66GHz LGA 775 95W Dual-Core Processor BX80551PE2666FN

Graphics Card
EVGA 256-P2-N554-AX GeForce 7600GT 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express x16 SLI Support Video Card

PQI TURBO 1GB (2 x 512MB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 667 (PC2 5400) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model PQI25400-1GDB

Hard Drive
Western Digital Caviar SE WD1600JS 160GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drive -Bare Drive

XION Ultimate Engineering XON-002 Black/Silver SECC Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case 450 Watt (P4 & AMD Ready) Power Supply

I appreciate the advice everyone, thanks!

7 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about system updates needed recommendations
  1. Memory should be upgraded.
    Graphics card should be upgraded.
    That what I think, you should get someone else's $0.02 also because I just built my first rig, so I may be leaving some stuff out or be completly wrong.
  2. Yeah I agree. My main question is, of I keep the motherboard and processor the same, how much can I upgrade? I'm sure the current system couldn't handle a top of the line graphics card or 16gb RAM, so curious what people would recommend.
  3. I hate to say it, but you're going to be extremely limited in what you can dowith that machine, because the motherboard won't support quad-cores or even a Core 2 Duo, just Celeron and Pentium D:

    Compare this to the minimum system requirements for Diablo:

    ... and AT BEST, you're going to be in at the bottom end of the requirements, meaning the game will be just awful to play. And that's after you upgrade the CPU, video card and RAM.

    If you are really short on cash, probably the best thing you could do is go to 2GB of RAM, overclock the CPU to get up to the minimum GHz, and pick up a $20 video card like this, which sucks but is still technically modern enough to play the game:

    But I really cannot recommend that; you are at a dead end and four generations of hardware behind, unless you start from scratch. You can put together a low-end but "modern" system that's going to be literally 10 times faster than anything you can do with your current build.

    There was another thread yesterday where a guy came up with something that would fit your purposes for around $365 (before OS).
  4. Thanks Taco, that is really what I was looking for in a response and exactly what I anticipated. I obviously understand the shortcomings of the system and was mostly curious what it would take to simply be a decent performer. Looks like it'll mean gutting the entire machine.

    If I wanted to spend $500 on a motherboard, processor, graphics card, memory, and hard drive - what would you recommend?
  5. Best answer
    I'd say something like this - it's not quite the best of the best, but pretty good for that price and leaves the door open if you want to step up to one of the new Ivy Bridge CPUs one day ...

    CPU: Intel i3-2120 - $125

    GPU: GTX 560 - $160

    Mobo: AsRock H77M - $85

    RAM: Geil Enhance Corsa 2x2GB - $27

    HDD: WD Caviar Blue 500GB - $75
  6. Best answer selected by MSam.
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