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First time builder, don't want to ruin it.

I have never pieced together a PC before. I wanted to play an MMO but didnt want to spend much money on a rig. I bought a refurbished DELL OptiPlex 745, added RAM and bought a shiny video card. I use dual monitors (1 DVI, 1 VGA) to play DDO and watch streaming videos at the same time (yes I know I'm lazy). But now I want to run things faster and at higher quality graphics levels. I don't really know much about hardware but I'm trying to teach myself with this process and I would love some help. Friends said this was the place to find it, so here are my specs:

- Intel Pentium D 945 CPU 3.40GHz
-Windows 7 64bit.
-8 GB RAM (4 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400)
-SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6570 2GB DDR3 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready Video Card (100324L)
-305w power supply.

Here's what I was shopping for:

AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX

Refurbished: ASUS M5A97 AM3+ AMD 970 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX AMD Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

G.SKILL Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2133 (PC3 17000) Desktop Memory Model F3-17000CL11Q-16GBZL


-I assume I need a new power supply, what do I about that?
-Think I can swap out these parts or do I need a new case too?
-Am I being too greedy with 16GB RAM, will I use that much or is 8GB cool?
13 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about first time builder ruin
  1. Sadly, that won't even play MMOs at good settings. :/
  2. Right now I can play Dungeons & Dragons Online at default settings in 1920 x 1080 windowed mode. And on my vga I can watch Hulu or Netflix, etc. I can't switch back and forth between windows very quickly and my game can dip in frame rate. But it does work.

    Why would my upgrade idea not work azeem?
  3. depending on the side of the mb and case (most dell and hp use micro atx mb.) you may need to use one.
    if your going to piecemeal a pc..your better off buying the power supply first and buy a 500-600w one so you can put in a newer video card. i use an h77 mb and one of the new ib i3 that be out in a few weeks. (120.00) price point. with a 500 or 7000x video card you should be able to play mmo. the newer 650 nvidia going to be in the 130-150.00 price point.
  4. Well, the GPU is really holding your CPU back, causing a bottleneck. I'd not run on anything less than a 6670.
  5. Thanks for the advice that helps. I get what your saying now azeem. And I didn't realize that there would be an i3 coming out soon near the price point of the x4 which is way better than I have now anyway. That's a good thing for me to consider now.
  6. -AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX

    -PC Power and Cooling Silencer Mk II 750W High Performance 80PLUS Silver SLI CrossFire ready Power Supply

    -Seagate Barracuda 1TB 3.5" SATA 6.0Gb/s Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive


    -BIOSTAR A960A3+ AM3+ AMD 870 ATX AMD Motherboard

    -G.SKILL Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2133 (PC3 17000) Desktop Memory Model F3-17000CL11Q-16GBZL

    -SAPPHIRE Vapor-X Radeon HD 7770 GHz Edition 100358VXL Video Card


    yes/no? Wait for new intel release?
  7. Best answer
    Try to get the 560 SE as it is a better GPU. Also change the RAM to 8GB and the PSU to a 550W XFX PRO550.
  8. BIOSTAR A960A3+ AM3+ AMD 870 ATX AMD Motherboard

    EVGA 01G-P3-1464-KR GeForce GTX 560 SE (Fermi) 1GB 192-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

    XFX Core Edition PRO550W (P1-550S-XXB9) 550W ATX12V 2.2 & ESP12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified ...

    G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 2133 (PC3 17000) Desktop Memory Model F3-17000CL11D-8GBXL

    AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor HDZ965FBGMBOX
  9. Can you tell your overall budget and how much do you intend to keep this pc

    So i can give you a better advice
  10. Yeah fair question. Budget is a bit flexible but I would like to keep it under $600 (I *might* be convinced to go higher). I picked out the x4 because of the price to power ratio but might be convinced to spend more on that. Pretty much whatever I buy would be waaay better than what I have now and I don't need top of the line, 7 months ago I was still using my XPS M1210 laptop and pair of desk fans as my computer. What I build here would prob not get changed again for 1-2years. The only game other than DDO that I am interested in playing anytime in the future would be Rome Total War 2. When I bought what I use now I simply was not aware of what was available now and I want to take advantage and build something good but cheap.

    No game needs to be run at the highest graphic quality. I don't do any video editing or photoshop. I just browse, stream movies/tv, play DDO and some other games, and use skype video chat some too. Mass Effect 3 was playable but could have been much smoother. I don't mind lower graphics at all, anything that isn't nintendo 64 looks pretty to me, I'm not overly picky. I mean I had been using the same laptop since 2006 so put that in perspective of what an upgrade would look like to me. Coming from using an old laptop like that; an argument over getting 18% more speed or performance out of an intel vs an AMD processor seems silly to me, they would both blow away what I'm used to. I should also mention that I work at a IT job where I use a dell d630 laptop for 8 hrs a day. So I just need to come home to something faster than a d630. If someone has been used to dial up, they don't need to jump into T1 just yet is how I look at it. But I could be completely wrong. Maybe spending a bit more on an intel would melt my face with wonder, I dunno.

    Again, I do have dual monitors if that is something I need to consider. I don't really know how much more demand that would add or if it is negligible.
  11. Since I don't know the flesh and bones of CPUs well at all, I basically see this AMD vs Intel thing as a pc v mac thing. I would rather pay much less for comparable power than make sure I was hitting each benchmark. I am totally ok with having a cpu that was in the top 10 -20 than make sure I had one of the top 5. I am ok with average. Because just like cars nowadays, average is pretty friggin nice n' cozy.
  12. Top 20 would include i3-i7. I wouldn't want to spend more than ~$200 max on a CPU. When I compare the ~$110 AMD cpus with the ~$200 intel, am I getting double the speed for my money? Also, how much do I need to spend on a mobo?
  13. Best answer selected by looksgoodonpaper.
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