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Dell Dimension 8400 CPU upgrade

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Last response: in CPUs
October 29, 2012 12:28:03 PM

Hello,
I have installed Windows 8 on my Dell Dimension 8400 only to discover my Pentium 4 3ghz 530 is incompatible as it does not have the Execute Disable option (XD). Can anyone recommend a replacement P4 CPU? I have found a P4 520 which according to Intels website has the XD option or is there a 64bit CPU compatible with my system?

More about : dell dimension 8400 cpu upgrade

a c 193 à CPUs
October 29, 2012 2:59:09 PM

All of the Intel® Pentium® 4 and Intel Pentium D processors were 32bit only. So the maximum addressable memory is 4GB. In order to get a 64bit processor you would have move to the Intel Core™ 2 Duo processors. The problem with this is that the chipset that is on the board that you have is a 925 which won't support the Intel Core 2 Duo's. The Intel Pentium 4 640 looks to be the best option to try and find and get support for Execute Disable.

I would think it would be a better value for you to simply get a newer low end system that would outperform that old system.
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June 12, 2013 7:05:53 AM

IntelEnthusiast said:
All of the Intel® Pentium® 4 and Intel Pentium D processors were 32bit only. So the maximum addressable memory is 4GB. In order to get a 64bit processor you would have move to the Intel Core™ 2 Duo processors.


This is not true. Check the Wikipedia page List of Intel Pentium 4 Microprosessors for chips that support "Intel 64" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Intel_Pentium_4_mi.... There are many. I am researching options for a Dimension 8400, so wanted to comment.
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a b à CPUs
June 12, 2013 7:18:17 AM

The recommendation is correct though. He could purchase an AMD APU system that would outperform his current PC. His options currently for the 8400 is purchasing a faster (if one exists) used processor but it will still be far behind current technology.

The model line from Dell was available in 2004. 9 years equals a computer way past its prime no matter how much you paid for it.
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June 12, 2013 7:47:18 AM

You can always spend more money on upgrades. My Dimension 8400 is a good quality machine that is still running.

A Pentium 4 HT 640 Prescott 2M 3.2GHz can be had used for under $10. People have reported that the 3.8GHz 670 also works, but will produce more fan noise.
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a c 83 à CPUs
June 12, 2013 12:07:46 PM

Dec76,

I have a Dell Dimension 8400, purchased new in 2004. The bad news is that it can only use as single-core Pentium 4 (not Pentium D or Core2) and the good news is that you can change to a single-core Pentium 4, that is 64-bit, hyperthreading 670, runs at 3.8GHz- and not at all expensive>

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Intel-Pentium-4-Processor-670-3...

> which is a current eBay (6.12.13) listing for the magic P4 670 for only $13.75, shipping included. This is a bit hotter running as bhhenry mentioned.

First, update the BIOS at Dell's site, have the full 4GB RAM, and the 670 CPU will really surprise you. Most applications are still single threaded and as the hyperthreading allows the core's off time to take up instruction sets, and this is 64-bit at 3.8GHz, you'll have good results- a good use of $14. The 670 does have the execute disable bit >

http://ark.intel.com/products/27487

My 8400 has the 630 @ 3.0GHz, 4GB RAM, and a Quadro FX 570 (256MB) with Windows 7 64-bit (upgraded from XP 32-bit), AutoCad 2004, Adobe CS3, Corel Graphics Suite 12, Sketchup, WordPerfect Office X4 and MS Office 2003, and more- perfectly well. If I didn't change to 3D CAD modeling in 2010, I'd probably be using still the 8400 as my main system. After I changed systems, for a year and a half, I used the 8400 as a HD recording system and made 100's of both live and MIDI recordings. Extremely reliable.

If you're having sluggish performance, you might consider upgrading the graphics card- the results can be better yet. You might consider something like a GeForce GT 210 1GB DDR3 for $30 or so>

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

and if you're doing CAD, find a used Quadro 600 (1GB)- about $60.

The top rated 8400 on Passmark has a rating of 501, 2D=311, 3D=456, MEM=604, Disk=508, using 32-bit XP Pro, a 3.2GHz and GeForce 8600GT.

There are limitations of course- with 4 GB RAM, not too many programs will run at once, but as mentioned most programs do not utilize multiple cores- rendering is the main exception, so the 8400 with a bit of sprucing up, will - if your not doing rendering, complex 3D modeling, particle simulations and so on, work for a long time.

Cheers,

BambiBoom

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June 12, 2013 6:34:04 PM

hafijur said:
Get a new computer. If you upgrade to a new cpu you will feel much better trust me. Last thing you want is a super slow hot computer. Your life is being wasted using ancient tech if you do anything intensive. Trust me pentium m cpus destroyed p4's about 5x better performance per watt back 10 years ago then p4's. Look on ebay and get a cheap core i3 machine, any core i3 thats cheap will do. Then you will have a cool and quiet pc ready to do tasks superfast. I would not even bother upgrading the cpu, there is literally no point. Keep in mind the newer cpus take a lot less electricity to complete the same task about 10x less electricity to complete the same task. Its your choice.

Spending $275 + $25 shipping on a used machine from ebay won't make you feel better. The idea is to make one's life better, not poorer. 9 or 10 year old tech is not ancient, at least not if it is built with good quality parts.

CPU intensive tasks are rare. Also, spending some time optimizing the system can reward. Leave the waste in the garbage. And do that superfast.

Oh yes, the point: What will make you feel better is spending only $10-15 to solve the original problem.

And I forgot ... Enable power management in the system to minimize carbon footprint. Power to the People!
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January 28, 2016 1:55:18 PM

I'm in the process of trying to upgrade my Dimension 8400 CPU running Win7 32-bit. Currently has a Pentium 4 530 3.0GHz (only 32-bit capable) and I found a Pentium 4 541 3.2GHz that is 64-bit compatible. I verified that I have a Socket 775 MoBo, so everything I've read seems to point that it should be compatible and I'll try installing Win7 64-bit. Lots of good info in this thread.
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a c 83 à CPUs
January 28, 2016 3:11:19 PM

svanwormer said:
I'm in the process of trying to upgrade my Dimension 8400 CPU running Win7 32-bit. Currently has a Pentium 4 530 3.0GHz (only 32-bit capable) and I found a Pentium 4 541 3.2GHz that is 64-bit compatible. I verified that I have a Socket 775 MoBo, so everything I've read seems to point that it should be compatible and I'll try installing Win7 64-bit. Lots of good info in this thread.


svanwormer,

I'm always glad to see the older systems have new use. The Dell Dimension 8400 was one of the first very reliable systems I had (very bad experience with Windows 95 on a Dell T700R Pentium III) and I think was the first hyprthreading, 64-bit capable Dell. I bought a Dimension 8400 new in 2004 with the Pentium 4 830 3.0GHz 64-bit- about $1,800 I think, and used it until 2010 when I bought a used Dell Precision T5400 (2X Xeon X5460 4-core @ 3.16GHz).

When I changed to the T5400, the 8400 was running AutoCad 2007, Adobe CS3, MS Office 2003, Corel Graphics X4 with a Quadro FX580 (512MB) on Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit. If you run the programs from the time, it's perfectly usable, and AutoCad 2007 was one of the first versions to have a (moderate) 3D capability. So many programs are still single-threaded.

As long as your upgrading, you may consider the Pentium 4 670 which is 64-bit and 3.8GHz. These are not expensive, selling for as little as $8-10.

You might check your system in Device Manager as to the chipset, to ensure it is 64-bit capable as my memory is that the 64-bit option may not have have been available from the very first 8400:

Chipsets that may use Pentium 4 32-bit:

http://ark.intel.com/products/27463/Intel-Pentium-4-Pro...

Chipsets that may use Pentium 4 64-bit:

http://ark.intel.com/products/27487/Intel-Pentium-4-Pro...

And there is some overlapping of course as 64-bit capable can run 32-bit also.

If you need to use P4 500-series you may be able to use the P4 570 and /or 571 which are both the 3.8GHz version in that series:

http://ark.intel.com/products/27476/Intel-Pentium-4-Pro...

I'm not sure of the differences in the 570 and 571 and for some reason there was a P4 670 and 672 that are also both 3.8GHz. I've forgotten quite a lot about that transitional period from 32-bit to 64-bit- but 64-bit is a very good idea !

There are Dimension 8400's on Passmark running: GTX 660 (3D= 1633), GTX 460 (3D= 1324) and GTX 750Ti (3D =1099) Those are not high scores for those cards, but my 2013 HP z420 with a Xeon E5-1620 3.6 /3.8GHz CPU has a Firepro V4900 with a 3D score of 1450 and that ran AutoCad 2013, Adobe CS6, and Solidworks 2011.

Amazing to think though how different PC's are from 11-12 years ago, but that they are still useful.

Cheers,

BambiBoom

HP z420 (2015) > Xeon E5-1660 v2 six-core @ 3.7 / 4.0GHz > 32GB DDR3 ECC 1866 RAM > Quadro K4200 (4GB) > Intel 730 480GB (9SSDSC2BP480G4R5) > Western Digital Black WD1003FZEX 1TB> M-Audio 192 sound card > 600W PSU> Logitech z2300 > Linksys AE3000 USB WiFi > 2X Dell Ultrasharp U2715H (2560 X 1440) > Windows 7 Professional 64 >
[ Passmark Rating = 5064 > CPU= 13989 / 2D= 819 / 3D= 4596 / Mem= 2772 / Disk= 4555]
[Cinebench R15 > CPU = 1014 OpenGL= 126.59 FPS] 7.8.15
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January 28, 2016 4:47:50 PM

I did already buy a 541 for $15 shipped so I'm hoping that works out then maybe I'll look for a 670. I did verify the chipset to be the 915 so it looks to be 64-bit compatible. Thanks for the insight, it's much appreciated.

bambiboom said:
svanwormer said:
I'm in the process of trying to upgrade my Dimension 8400 CPU running Win7 32-bit. Currently has a Pentium 4 530 3.0GHz (only 32-bit capable) and I found a Pentium 4 541 3.2GHz that is 64-bit compatible. I verified that I have a Socket 775 MoBo, so everything I've read seems to point that it should be compatible and I'll try installing Win7 64-bit. Lots of good info in this thread.


svanwormer,

I'm always glad to see the older systems have new use. The Dell Dimension 8400 was one of the first very reliable systems I had (very bad experience with Windows 95 on a Dell T700R Pentium III) and I think was the first hyprthreading, 64-bit capable Dell. I bought a Dimension 8400 new in 2004 with the Pentium 4 830 3.0GHz 64-bit- about $1,800 I think, and used it until 2010 when I bought a used Dell Precision T5400 (2X Xeon X5460 4-core @ 3.16GHz).

When I changed to the T5400, the 8400 was running AutoCad 2007, Adobe CS3, MS Office 2003, Corel Graphics X4 with a Quadro FX580 (512MB) on Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit. If you run the programs from the time, it's perfectly usable, and AutoCad 2007 was one of the first versions to have a (moderate) 3D capability. So many programs are still single-threaded.

As long as your upgrading, you may consider the Pentium 4 670 which is 64-bit and 3.8GHz. These are not expensive, selling for as little as $8-10.

You might check your system in Device Manager as to the chipset, to ensure it is 64-bit capable as my memory is that the 64-bit option may not have have been available from the very first 8400:

Chipsets that may use Pentium 4 32-bit:

http://ark.intel.com/products/27463/Intel-Pentium-4-Pro...

Chipsets that may use Pentium 4 64-bit:

http://ark.intel.com/products/27487/Intel-Pentium-4-Pro...

And there is some overlapping of course as 64-bit capable can run 32-bit also.

If you need to use P4 500-series you may be able to use the P4 570 and /or 571 which are both the 3.8GHz version in that series:

http://ark.intel.com/products/27476/Intel-Pentium-4-Pro...

I'm not sure of the differences in the 570 and 571 and for some reason there was a P4 670 and 672 that are also both 3.8GHz. I've forgotten quite a lot about that transitional period from 32-bit to 64-bit- but 64-bit is a very good idea !

There are Dimension 8400's on Passmark running: GTX 660 (3D= 1633), GTX 460 (3D= 1324) and GTX 750Ti (3D =1099) Those are not high scores for those cards, but my 2013 HP z420 with a Xeon E5-1620 3.6 /3.8GHz CPU has a Firepro V4900 with a 3D score of 1450 and that ran AutoCad 2013, Adobe CS6, and Solidworks 2011.

Amazing to think though how different PC's are from 11-12 years ago, but that they are still useful.

Cheers,

BambiBoom

HP z420 (2015) > Xeon E5-1660 v2 six-core @ 3.7 / 4.0GHz > 32GB DDR3 ECC 1866 RAM > Quadro K4200 (4GB) > Intel 730 480GB (9SSDSC2BP480G4R5) > Western Digital Black WD1003FZEX 1TB> M-Audio 192 sound card > 600W PSU> Logitech z2300 > Linksys AE3000 USB WiFi > 2X Dell Ultrasharp U2715H (2560 X 1440) > Windows 7 Professional 64 >
[ Passmark Rating = 5064 > CPU= 13989 / 2D= 819 / 3D= 4596 / Mem= 2772 / Disk= 4555]
[Cinebench R15 > CPU = 1014 OpenGL= 126.59 FPS] 7.8.15


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