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Upgrades for my PC, help?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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September 3, 2012 2:15:13 PM

Hi.

Basically I want to upgrade my computer so that I can play games like Witcher 2. One of my computers shortcoming is the woefully out of date power card I fitted it with a few years back, a geforce 9500 GT. Anyway, I was thinking of replacing this with a geforce GTX 570, will that be enough, or more than enough for witcher 2? Also I'm not too sure whether I need to update my divers or not and whether its possible given my PC which is a packardbell ixtreme.

I ran my comp through a 'can you run it' on system requirments lab and got this.

http://www.systemrequirementslab.com/cyr

I'll be honest, it's all Greek to me, so I need some help on figuring out what I need to replace in order to get above minimum and possible maximum.

Thank you.

Edit:

CPU; Intel(R) Core(TM) i3 CPU 530 @ 2.93GHz

CPU speed; 2.9 GHz

RAM; 3.0 GB

OS; Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Edition (build 7600), 64-bit

More about : upgrades

a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 2:34:55 PM

your link doesnt work
a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 2:47:34 PM

its better to get 660 than a 570.. lower power consumption and lower temperatures while offering better performance than a 570
Related resources
a c 104 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 3:25:34 PM

^+1 570 would be probably to much for the psu. ( 450W ? ) I have an PB IPower3.0, which had a 450W, not a really crap model, but also not really that great.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 3:53:29 PM

The recommended requirements for witcher 2 are not very much.
http://www.game-debate.com/games/index.php?g_id=860&gam...

A q6600 class cpu(what is yours?) and a GTX260 class video card.

A GTX550ti would be about the more modern equivalent.

One problem you may have is your PSU. Pre built systems usually have only sufficient power to run the sold configuration.
If your psu does not have a 6 pin pci-e power connector, or is not as strong as 400w, then the best card you can use will be a 7750.
That is better than your 9500GT, but not as strong as the GTX550ti.
I would always upgrade to a significantly stronger card. If you do not, you may be disappointed if you do not see a big improvement.

If you replace your 9500GT with another Nvidia card, you will not have to change drivers.
If you switch to a amd card, you will have to uninstall the nvidia drivers and install a amd graphics driver.

I suspect you are facing a power supply replacement if you want a much stronger graphics card.
A GTX570 will need a 550w psu with two 6 pin pci-e power connectors.
A GTX660ti will need a bit less, only 450w.
A GTX550ti would need 400w with one 6 pin connector.
September 3, 2012 4:04:14 PM

I've added a few extra details if that's any help. Also I think my comp has 400W but I'll just check now.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 4:12:44 PM

TheSirPrise said:
I've added a few extra details if that's any help. Also I think my comp has 400W but I'll just check now.


Your cpu is very good.
3gb of ram is a bit marginal.
Ram is so cheap that I suggest you repopulate with a 8gb ram kit. About $35.
September 3, 2012 4:34:00 PM

Thanks for the advice, I've checked my computers wattage and unfortunately it's 250W.
a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 4:38:33 PM

I would get at least a 650w psu. The antec green edition works well. As for the video card, a 560ti, 660ti depending on the budget may be best for you. The 570 is good as well but requires more power and can run a little hotter. Ram is ok, but 3gb is a little odd considering you can get around 8gb for maybe $40 bucks now a days.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 4:44:24 PM

TheSirPrise said:
Thanks for the advice, I've checked my computers wattage and unfortunately it's 250W.


Yep. A PSU change is in order.
Buy only a quality brand.
My short list would include Antec, Corsair, Seasonic, PC P&C, or XFX.

It is not wrong to overprovision your psu a bit. It will only use the wattage demanded of it. A PSU operates more quietly and efficiently in the middle third of it's range.

Here is a nice PC P&C 500w modular unit for $60 after rebate:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
September 3, 2012 5:00:04 PM

Thanks, and if I were to install a new 8gb RAM and that 500w modular unit, what graphics card would you recommend? Nvidia would be preferable, but from what I've seen I think the geforce GTX 570 and the geforce GTX 660 look quite good.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 5:03:35 PM

TheSirPrise said:
Thanks, and if I were to install a new 8gb RAM and that 500w modular unit, what graphics card would you recommend? Nvidia would be preferable, but from what I've seen I think the geforce GTX 570 and the geforce GTX 660 look quite good.

I think a GTX660ti would be great.

On the ram,
You want documented ram compatibility. If you should ever have a problem, you want supported ram.
Otherwise, you risk a finger pointing battle between the ram and motherboard support sites, claiming "not my problem".
One place to check is your motherboards web site.
Look for the ram QVL list. It lists all of the ram kits that have been tested with that particular motherboard.
Sometimes the QVL list is not updated after the motherboard is released.
For more current info, go to a ram vendor's web site and access their ram selection configurator.
Enter your motherboard, and you will get a list of compatible ram kits.
While today's motherboards are more tolerant of different ram, it makes sense to buy ram that is known to work and is supported.

The current Intel cpu's have an excellent integrated ram controller. It is able to keep the cpu fed with data from any speed ram.

The difference in real application performance or FPS between the fastest and slowest ram is on the order of 1-3%.

Synthetic benchmark differences will be impressive, but are largely irrelevant in the real world.

Fancy heat spreaders are mostly marketing too.

In fact tall heat spreaders are a negative because they can impact some cpu coolers.
Only if you are seeking record level overclocks should you consider faster ram or better latencies.

Read this Anandtech article on memory scaling:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4503/sandy-bridge-memory-...
---------------bottom line------------

DDR3 1600 is the sweet spot considering the marginal cost delta over 1333.
a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 5:11:46 PM

Look up your motherboard and see what ram you can put in there. I would go for something low profile because if you want a cpu cooler later, you may be hitting the top of the heat sink from the RAM. I have Corsair Vengence and I should have gotten the lower profile ones since I plan on getting a cpu cooler later but not sure now that the heat sinks are spikey.
September 3, 2012 5:51:10 PM

To be totally honest I'm a total novice when it comes to computer hardware and software. I've downloaded something which basically gives a detailed listing of my computers hardware and software, if I give you the link could you help me with the comparison of my motherboard and RAM?

Thank you.

file:///C:/Program%20Files%20(x86)/Belarc/Advisor/System/tmp/(user-PC).html
a b U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 6:34:50 PM

That is a file linked to your pc. If you can list your motherboard here I can look up the type of ram it may support.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 8:07:49 PM

TheSirPrise said:
To be totally honest I'm a total novice when it comes to computer hardware and software. I've downloaded something which basically gives a detailed listing of my computers hardware and software, if I give you the link could you help me with the comparison of my motherboard and RAM?

Thank you.

file:///C:/Program%20Files%20(x86)/Belarc/Advisor/System/tmp/(user-PC).html


Your link does not work for me.
Download and run CPU-Z.
It will identify your motherboard model, ram, gpu, and ram.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 8:08:52 PM

What is your budget?
September 3, 2012 8:49:09 PM

Motherboard:
Packard Bell H57M01

Processor a:
2.93 gigahertz Intel Core i3 530
64 kilobyte primary memory cache
256 kilobyte secondary memory cache
4096 kilobyte tertiary memory cache
64-bit ready
Multi-core (2 total)
Hyper-threaded (4 total)


Drives:
626.07 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
442.22 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space

I hope that's alright.

In terms of budget, in total I'll probably spend £300 maximum. About $480.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 9:50:37 PM

In the US,
A GTX660ti will be about $300.
A 8gb kit(2 x 4gb) of 1.5v DDR3 1333 or 1600 ram will be about $40.
A quality 500w psu will be about $70.

Looks like you are good to go.
September 3, 2012 10:00:09 PM

Thanks man, you've really helped me and I appreciate it.

So you're positive that my motherboard can handle the RAM and the additional hardware? I just like solid confirmation, sorry if it seems a little ocd.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 3, 2012 11:31:07 PM

TheSirPrise said:
Thanks man, you've really helped me and I appreciate it.

So you're positive that my motherboard can handle the RAM and the additional hardware? I just like solid confirmation, sorry if it seems a little ocd.


Good question.
I can't find a Packard Bell H57M01 motherboard.
But a motherboard with a H57 chipset should not have any problem with the parts I mentioned.
To be certain, call Corsair/kingston or... customer support, and they can be more definitive.
a b U Graphics card
September 4, 2012 1:05:28 AM

That board seems to be a gigabyte type. It should support up to 16gb of ram so the Ram that geofelt listed should work for you. I would double check by going to the corsair website and running their tool to see what ram they recommend, but for sure you will be fine.
a b U Graphics card
September 4, 2012 5:14:44 AM

but first make sure what version of windows 7 you have.. if you have 32 bit then anything over 4gb of ram is useless as your system wont be able to take advantage of it.. only if you have 64bit version then get 8gig ram
September 4, 2012 7:31:59 PM

I've been out today and bought a G7 power extreme 580W for £30. Does this seem like a good start?
a b U Graphics card
September 4, 2012 7:35:20 PM

TheSirPrise said:
I've been out today and bought a G7 power extreme 580W for £30. Does this seem like a good start?


You should be of if you get a 560ti, 660ti, or a 7950. As long as you don't plan on overclocking much.
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 4, 2012 8:04:43 PM

TheSirPrise said:
I've been out today and bought a G7 power extreme 580W for £30. Does this seem like a good start?


I think not.

The last place you should economize is on a psu.
A cheap psu will not deliver it's advertised wattage, and if it fails, it can damage anything it is connected to.
I have a hard time believeing that a 580w psu of good quality can be bought for 30#.
If you can, send it back, and buy a quality unit.
My short list of quality units would include Corsair, Seasonic, PC P&C, Antec and XFX to name a few.
September 4, 2012 8:20:29 PM

Alright then, thanks again. Also, do you think it best I but these from store's or online from the actual company websites?
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 4, 2012 8:27:18 PM

TheSirPrise said:
Alright then, thanks again. Also, do you think it best I but these from store's or online from the actual company websites?


I can't help you there, I am in the US.
Many online retailers are reputable, and offer decent prices.
In the US, Amazon and Newegg are two good ones.
September 4, 2012 11:07:04 PM

Ok then, so do you suggest getting a 500W PSU of the brands you suggested or one of a higher wattage such as 800W because like you said their stated watts don't live up to the wattage the psu actually produces?
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 4, 2012 11:23:24 PM

TheSirPrise said:
Ok then, so do you suggest getting a 500W PSU of the brands you suggested or one of a higher wattage such as 800W because like you said their stated watts don't live up to the wattage the psu actually produces?


A quality psu will deliver the advertised watts continuously, and at 40c ambient.
A cheap one may reach the advertised claims only at peak and at room temperature.
You can use this list as a guide to quality tiers:
http://www.eggxpert.com/forums/thread/323050.aspx

It is not wrong to buy a psu that is slightly stronger. It will only consume the wattage demanded of it.
A slightly stronger psu than the 450w that a 660ti needs will be a bit quieter if it does not have to have the fan working at full speed.
An excessively strong psu will be less efficient and more costly than you need.
Something in the 500w-650w range would be fine.
September 5, 2012 5:54:15 PM

I returned the cheap psu and bought a 'B grade XFX 750W PSU' which cost me £85. Does that seem better?
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 5, 2012 6:22:25 PM

TheSirPrise said:
I returned the cheap psu and bought a 'B grade XFX 750W PSU' which cost me £85. Does that seem better?


I don't know what "B" grade is.
Possibly factory refurbished which would be fine.

But XFX is a very good brand, and it seems much better.
September 21, 2012 3:42:18 PM

Hi, I know it's been a while but I have finally accumulated the graphics card, PSU and RAM, could you double check them for me to see if they're compatible.

RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws 2X4GB

Graphics Card: Nvidia Geforce GTX 660 Ti

PSU: XFX 750W

Does this seem fine?
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 21, 2012 3:58:42 PM

TheSirPrise said:
Hi, I know it's been a while but I have finally accumulated the graphics card, PSU and RAM, could you double check them for me to see if they're compatible.

RAM: G.Skill Ripjaws 2X4GB

Graphics Card: Nvidia Geforce GTX 660 Ti

PSU: XFX 750W

Does this seem fine?


PSU and Graphics card look good.

No way to tell on the ram unless you can identify your motherboard, brand and model number.

You want documented ram compatibility. If you should ever have a problem, you want supported ram.
Otherwise, you risk a finger pointing battle between the ram and motherboard support sites, claiming "not my problem".
One place to check is your motherboards web site.
Look for the ram QVL list. It lists all of the ram kits that have been tested with that particular motherboard.
Sometimes the QVL list is not updated after the motherboard is released.
For more current info, go to a ram vendor's web site and access their ram selection configurator.
Enter your motherboard, and you will get a list of compatible ram kits.
While today's motherboards are more tolerant of different ram, it makes sense to buy ram that is known to work and is supported.
September 22, 2012 9:12:52 PM

My Motherboard is a Packard Bell model H57M01.

From what I have read on another forum it should be alright.

But I've hit a snag.

It turns out that my new 750W PSU is too big for my packardbell I xtreme case, which means two things I can do.

1) Buy a new case, if so, could you provide me with a list or a suggestion of suitable cases please?

2) Find a smaller PSU that delivers a similar Wattage, but I'm assuming if I want anything over 500W the PSU's are going to be larger and a bigger case is needed and better in the long run, am I right?
a b U Graphics card
September 22, 2012 9:38:21 PM

I agree you shouldn't reduce your costs on psu,its better to find a cheaper case.
On other thoughts I'd recommend the CX 500W psu (already suggested by robjordy) as I'm using it for quite a while with my 660ti.For further info check my config -
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/configuration.php?con...
a c 260 U Graphics card
September 23, 2012 2:02:50 AM

Most psu's will be ATX in size. That means that the opening will be a standard dimension, about 3.4" x 5.9"
The depth may vary, with the stronger units usually being a bit longer.

If your XFX psu does not fit, it is because the original case used a non standard or smaller form factor.
The wattage has little to do with it.

I would keep the psu and buy a standard sized case.
The cheapest ATX Antec case that holds your motherboard will do the job.

a b U Graphics card
September 23, 2012 4:34:04 AM

i would say a cooler master elite 430 for $40 or a cooler master haf 612 for $58
!