Solved

Upgrading Prebuilt Comp: Need Advice

So last year, before I did much on my pc, I went out and spent "wasted" money on an HP prebuild computer. THIS --> http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/Document.jsp?objectID=c03050867&lang=en&cc=us&contentType=SupportFAQ&prodSeriesId=5151865&prodTypeId=12454
I have not added any thing to it, yet. I would like to know what I should upgrade first. I do not live near any computer stores.
If you could suggest parts and the sites they are located, I would appreciate it. (I do know about the bigger sites like Newegg, TigerDirect and Amazon.)
I have a budget for the first upgrades of about $250. Ideally, this will be a gaming computer along with running Autodesk Inventor and 3ds Max on.
12 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about upgrading prebuilt comp advice
  1. get a new power supply, like this one...

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139026

    and put the rest, all of it, towards a GPU, like this one...

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150605

    You would see a small increase in performance if you upgraded your CPU, but you would see a HUGE increase from upgrading your GPU. If you only have $250 to spend, spend it on what I suggested.
  2. Deemo13 said:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817139026&Tpk=cx430

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102967

    I would go for those. If you want more power, then you can go for a CX500 and a Radeon HD7850.


    great minds think alike eh? he'll be good with the cx430 and a 7870 though, trust me. I ran a Phenom II x4 OC'd to 3.8 GHz and an OC'd HD 6870 on an Antec Earthwatts 430W PSU for a year without issue.
  3. I have no doubts about that, the CX430 is pretty awesome. I just don't know how much the OP wants to spend. Even though they set a budget, sometimes I just recommend a default because they didnt state the resolution or the game being played.

    By the way, what games will you be playing? At what resolution?
  4. Erm... there's a huge problem with both the above suggestions.

    You might need a low-profile graphics card to fit it correctly to your computer.
  5. Best answer
    That's a surprisingly informative reference document. You have a pretty spartan rig there, but you should actually be able to upgrade it incrementally pretty well, which is more than can be said of many prebuilts. I would say your absolute top priority if you want to do gaming is to add a discrete graphics card and a bit beefier power supply to support it. Probably something along these lines:

    PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

    Video Card: VisionTek Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($201.65 @ Amazon)
    Power Supply: XFX 550W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($49.99 @ NCIX US)
    Total: $251.64
    (Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)


    Your case doesn't look to have great (any) airflow, so if heat starts to become an issue after installing that GPU, then I would say to look at maybe replacing the case as the next upgrade, and just leave the side panel off in the meantime if necessary. Or, as DarkSable points out, if physical space is an issue then case becomes an immediate upgrade priority. You can get a basic chassis that will meet your needs for around $40-50, like the Antec One, Zalman Z11, or Rosewill Challenger. If it has to be purchased in the initial batch, you might have to step your GPU down to the 7850 to make room in the budget.

    After that you'd probably want to upgrade the CPU, and you can actually just drop a much higher performance sandy bridge in your existing motherboard. I would say an i5 2400 or 2500 probably if you want to go that route; if you're really serious about getting into rendering/editing in a big way, you're probably better off replacing the motherboard entirely and getting an Ivy Bridge i7 with some dual channel memory to go with it, but that will cost you a good deal more money. I probably wouldn't recommend going that route though, and I don't think it will be necessary either. An i5 will be able to handle most anything you can throw at it, and for gaming it's just about the best you can get.

    Last of all I'd get an SSD for your OS / primary app drive and turn that 5400 RPM 1.5TB into secondary file storage.
  6. Deemo13 said:
    I have no doubts about that, the CX430 is pretty awesome. I just don't know how much the OP wants to spend. Even though they set a budget, sometimes I just recommend a default because they didnt state the resolution or the game being played.

    By the way, what games will you be playing? At what resolution?


    I kind of thought the gpu would be first to be upgrade, but I wanted an outside option. The games will be any newer game (BF3, BL2, BO2, ect.) and it will be at whatever resolution gives me playable fps on any said game. I not a fps junky. The max res. will probably be 1440 x 900. What is your stand on Amd vs Nvidia gpu's at this price range?
  7. DarkSable said:
    Erm... there's a huge problem with both the above suggestions.

    You might need a low-profile graphics card to fit it correctly to your computer.


    nah i'm pretty sure it'll be just fine.
  8. I wouldn't worry about the card height, the case looks to be pretty standard width, but card length might be an issue... I suppose if there's a conflict and you're handy with tools, you could probably just cut out a chunk of the drive cage to make space.

    I did a quick google trying to find pictures of the inside of the case, but no dice.
  9. Augray37 said:
    nah i'm pretty sure it'll be just fine.


    I did have a gpu at one time it, worst than onboard (<-sad), but is wasn't low profile so I am indeed fine.
  10. Best answer selected by CoffMan.
  11. DarkSable said:
    Erm... there's a huge problem with both the above suggestions.

    You might need a low-profile graphics card to fit it correctly to your computer.


    Nah that's standard sized.
Ask a new question

Read More

Prebuilt Systems Computer Hewlett Packard Systems Product