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Need advice for my specific machine: New more graphical power!

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 1, 2012 2:17:18 AM

Hey guys, I am a photographer who uses CS5 Photoshop a lot. While I don't use a lot of video files, I am noticing a significant slowdown when using Photoshop for more than an hour.

ALSO - while previously I was able to play games like Counterstrike:SOURCE, and a "can you run it" score that was higher than recommended for Star Wars: KOTOR, I couldn't even get it to reach 1FPS!

SO - I think I need a new Graphics card, and/or a RAM upgrade. Is it even worth to upgrade, or should I not even bother?

HERE is my system:

HP A6700y
Rating 5.0 Windows Experience Index
AMD Phenom 9150e Quad-Core Processor 1.80Ghz
4GB RAM
NVIDIA GeForce 9400 GT

Advice?
a c 88 U Graphics card
April 1, 2012 2:19:32 AM

Upgrade both your cpu and graphics and another 4 gb of ram , all depending on your power supply and motherboard , what are the rest of your specs?
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April 1, 2012 3:02:59 AM

Rest is all standard, what came with machine:

MOTHERBOARD:
Manufacturer: ECS
Form factor: microATX - 24.4 cm (9.6 inches) x 24.4 cm (9.6 inches)
Chipset: NVIDIA GeForce 6150SE nForce 430
Memory sockets: 4 x DDR2
Front side bus speeds: 2000MT/s (2.0 GT/s)
Processor socket: AM2+
Expansion Slots:
1 PCI Express x16 slot for graphics card
2 PCI Express x1 slots
1 PCI slot

Memory
4 GB
Amount: 4 GB
Speed: PC2-6400 MB/sec
Memory upgrade information
Dual channel memory architecture
Four 240-pin DDR2 DIMM sockets
Supported DIMM types:
PC2-5300 (667 MHz)
PC2-6400 (800 MHz)
Non-ECC memory only, unbuffered
Supports 2GB DDR2 DIMMs
Supports up to 8 GB on 64 bit PCs
Supports up to 4 GB* on 32 bit PCs

300W power supply

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a c 362 U Graphics card
April 1, 2012 3:17:34 AM

Regarding KOTOR, the near non-existent performance is probably due to the fact that it is not compatible with Win 7. There is a fix for for it somewhere on the web though. I recall playing it with a Radeon 9250 back when it 1st came out. The nVidia 9400GT is definitely more powerful than that card.

The best video card you can install given your 300w PSU is the Radeon HD 7750 for around $110. If that's a bit rich then the Radeon HD 6670 should go for around $70 (less if there's a rebate).

However, you have a PCI-e 1.0 or 1.1 slot in your old motherboard. The Radeon HD 6670 is a PCI-e 2.1 card will the Radeon HD 7750 is a PCI-e 3.0 card. There is not a 100% guarantee that a either card will work, but the chances of a PCI-e 2.1 card not being compatible in a PCI-e 1.0/1.1 slot is relatively small. As for the Radeon HD 7750... I simply do not know since I have not read anything about anyone trying to install a PCI-e 3.0 card in an old PCI-e 1.0/1.1 slot.
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April 1, 2012 3:22:15 AM

CORRECTION: I couldn't play Star Wars: TOR, the new MMORPG.

Thanks for the advice.
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a c 203 U Graphics card
April 1, 2012 3:43:22 AM

your better off with a system that old to upgrade it. if your using photo shop for work or income talk to your cpa about writing off a new computer as a biz expense.if not look to see if you can get a donation cost on your old pc that you can write off on your taxes. you find that the newer sandy bridge and or amd system are a lot more faster with photo shop then your old pc is.
most pre built system have under sized power supplys 300-400w in size. there ok for mini pc with low end video cards.
plus side if something fails on a pre built or you having software or driver issue there someone or someplace to turn too.

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