Upgrading gaming computer

Hello, I am looking at getting higher framerates while gaming (mostly WoW). I run the game on most low settings at a resolution of 1920x1080. Having low graphical settings doesn't bother me, but the lag present in larger fights does bother me.

I know that the GPU is a big player in framerates but I am also aware that all computer components work together. My budget is around $300-$400 for the upgrades. I would also appreciate knowing if the upgrades suggested will have a noticeable or only slight a affect on my framerates.

Here is my current setup:

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 955 (3.2Ghz)
RAM: 4gb (2x2gb XMS3 DDR3)
MOBO: Gigabyte 880GMA-UD2H
GPU: Asus Radeon EAH5770 (1GB DDR5)
PSU: Corsair VX-550W

I have noticed at times that my PC's memory comes close to using all of the 4GB capacity so I am expecting to upgrade that as well.

I would appreciate your suggestions
13 answers Last reply
More about upgrading gaming computer
  1. Mainly all you really need is a GPU and probably more RAM. You could get a 7850 and some RAM for under $300. Even a 7870.
  2. Deemo's a little off there - he missed that you're playing WoW, mostly.

    While he's right that a better GPU would help framerates, WoW is an EXTREMELY processor limited game. Getting a better GPU will help with max framerates, but not with the lag that's coming from drops.

    In order to improve this, you can do two things:
    1) Buy a good aftermarket heatsink and overclock the heck out of your processor
    or:
    2) Upgrade to a faster chip that has more efficient architecture.
  3. You'll have to check if your Mobo is compatible with this (I don't believe it is)

    But this CPU will drastically be better: http://pcpartpicker.com/part/amd-cpu-ad580kwohjbox (from my understanding atleast)

    It also has integrated GPU which i believe to be better than your current. I'm still pretty new to this, but this should GREATLY improve preformance.

    Here is a newegg link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113280&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-na-_-na-_-na&AID=10446076&PID=3938566&SID=


    PLEASE CORRECT ME IF IM WRONG!!
  4. DarkSable said:
    Deemo's a little off there - he missed that you're playing WoW, mostly.

    While he's right that a better GPU would help framerates, WoW is an EXTREMELY processor limited game. Getting a better GPU will help with max framerates, but not with the lag that's coming from drops.

    In order to improve this, you can do two things:
    1) Buy a good aftermarket heatsink and overclock the heck out of your processor
    or:
    2) Upgrade to a faster chip that has more efficient architecture.


    They did make the 955 in stock guise, a non Black Edition. It was a 95W processor and has no ability to overclock. I assumed the OP had the stock model and was unable to overclock.

    But you are correct on WoW being processor limited. I figured the 955 was quick enough. Though not having played WoW before, I'm not sure how it would perform on the Phenom II X4 architecture, which I still consider quick.

    I felt like adding the RAM and a new GPU would be the most logical, though a processor upgrade would be nice as well.
  5. sktittles said:
    You'll have to check if your Mobo is compatible with this (I don't believe it is)

    But this CPU will drastically be better: http://pcpartpicker.com/part/amd-cpu-ad580kwohjbox (from my understanding atleast)

    It also has integrated GPU which i believe to be better than your current. I'm still pretty new to this, but this should GREATLY improve preformance.

    Here is a newegg link: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819113280&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-na-_-na-_-na&AID=10446076&PID=3938566&SID=


    PLEASE CORRECT ME IF IM WRONG!!


    Granted the A10 is very good, I would have to say that a 955/5770 setup would be able to out-pace it. If he didn't already have the 955/5770 then the A10 would be a contender.

    And considering the 5770 is an older card, I would think his motherboard is older. Most likely AM3. Which would not be compatible with the FM2 Chipset the A10 requires.

    The A10 is pretty good though.
  6. Thanks for the suggestions.

    It looks like I now have three options:

    1.) New GPU
    2.) New Processor
    3.) New Heat Sink and OC current processor (I have never done this before)

    I do play other games occasionally - such as Dota2, Team Fortress 2 and Starcraft 2. Perhaps a new GPU would be the better choice overall? Or is my CPU limiting me too much?
  7. The CPU shouldn't limiting you that much, I think the best upgrade in this case is a new GPU and more RAM.
  8. Ok thanks Deemo.

    I'm looking at the 7850 and wondering if there is a big difference in the different manufacturers of the card.

    Here are the two I'm considering:

    http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=43_557_558&item_id=047884

    http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=43_557_558&item_id=047463

    The first one, Gigabyte, is $20 cheaper and apparently has a 50Mhz higher clock speed. Seems like the obvious choice if that's correct. Thoughts?
  9. Those both are good, but the Gigabyte has a better cooler and the higher clock speed.
  10. Ok thank you Deemo, figured the Gigabyte was the better card.

    One last question: I am also looking at RAM and I don't notice a very large price difference ($20-$40) between some of the slowest Mhz ram and some of the highest. In that case I am looking to purchase:
    http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=24_311_312_614&item_id=044129
    which is clocked at 2133mhz. Ive seen this brand as the cheapest before, I hope there arent any common problems with them?

    Thank you
  11. You might want to get matching RAM for your other 2 sticks (if you are able to put 4 sticks)
  12. Yes I have 4 slots for RAM in the motherboard and currently have 2x2gb sticks in there. Is there a way to check the speed on my current sticks to make sure they match what I am purchasing?
  13. Well, usually if they are the same brand they should work. If you take one of the sticks out and look at it it should have the timings and speed. Make sure you get the same timings and speed.
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