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A bit of cash for a small upgrade. But what to upgrade?

Last response: in Systems
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November 24, 2012 1:58:11 AM

Hello,

First post here, but an important one for me. I have a bit of money for this weekends deals/Cyber Monday, and I really need to identify what piece I need to upgrade the most. My current set-up is:

Processor: Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200 @2.33GHz
Motherboard: DX48BT2_
RAM: 4x2 GB (1333MHz)
Graphics Card: Radeon 5850 1GB(I have access to a 6870 1GB shortly)
Hard Drive: Seagate HDD 350 GB (7200rpm, I believe, not sure how to check that, but as far as load times are concerned, I don't mind too much if that makes a difference in suggestions)

Case has recently been upgraded to a cool master last December.

I built the computer a few years back, adding 4gb of ram and a new graphics card over the years. Money has been tight, so I've done what I can. I had some severe overheating issues, but after re-applying thermal paste, it worked itself out (so it seems). I'm hoping to get the best bang for my buck (which is around $300) and might not have much to spend for awhile, so I can get a pretty decent upgrade or two, but I'm not exactly sure how to find out which piece needs it the most. I would love your suggestions and recommendations and appreciate any help you can provide.
November 24, 2012 2:01:10 AM

upgrade the motherboard and upgrade your to 8 gb, your computer will become a beast
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November 24, 2012 2:01:46 AM

or you can get a Solid State Disk, for faster screen start up
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November 24, 2012 5:13:20 AM

I'm not too worried about faster loading unless it improved in-game performance. My goal is to make it better for games, as I don't do anything outside of them that requires too much computer performance requirements. I'd like to run with better framerates at higher graphic settings. My 5850 can run all games at max, but I feel a decent framerate drop to around 15fps. If I'm in Guild Wars 2, even on low-mid settings, in large scale battles it just craps out and I have to cross my fingers. I'd love to get atleast 30 fps with decent settings, for a good example of what I'm looking for. Any suggestions based on that?
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November 24, 2012 5:18:22 AM

Framerate is gonna be your gpu. cpu and hdd/ssd plays very little role their. Especially since your gPU only has one gig ram, get a better card asap, the 6870 will help alot, but you could get a 7850/7870 for like 200 dollars roughly.
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November 24, 2012 5:47:44 AM

Ah, sweet. So if I invested just in a 3gb 7800 radeon, I'd be sitting much better than I am currently? (IE: that be my best investment?)
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!