Everyone was very helpful and I've been running the following rig for the past two years:
HP p6310f which has a AMD 630 anthlon II x4(2.8 ghz), 6 gigs ram ddr3, 1 terrabyte HD.
I got a GTS 250 and a BFG 450watt PSU to actually make the system play games. It worked very well until I got BF3, which I'm playing on pretty middling settings. I also bought a 27" Samsung LED monitor. Now I want to upgrade.
Here is some criteria:
I'm looking to spend between $200-300 for both the GPU and if I need a new PSU, that as well. I'm not someone who needs super ULTRA settings, but obviously if I can get there on my budget I'd be happy to make it happen.
I've read that the AMD 6870 is a good buy at around the $160 range. I also was intrigued by the 7850 at around the $260. I imagine the 7850 is better, but how significant of an upgrade would this be compared to the 6870? Also, what PSU should I get with these?
Please make any other recommendations you can think of. Thanks guys.
The AMD 7850 is going to be better than the 6950 but it will need a power input somewhere along the lines of a 4pin/6pin connector, i would recomend upgrading the PSU to around 750w modular PSU because then you can remove the the unwanted connectors.
A decent PSU would be a Seasonic X-750 its got a Gold certified also its 100% modular and has black sleeved cables to improve strength
A HD7850 will be roughly equivalent to a GTX570, but use a LOT less power. I'm not sure I'd rely on that old BFG 450W PSU to power it though. Here's a 520W modular Seasonic that is only $60 right now: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... although there's shipping costs too; make it $66, which is still a good deal.
If getting this PSU limits you to the HD6870, that's still a big jump over what you have.