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Upgrading/improving my laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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February 27, 2011 11:51:10 AM

Hi guys, so basically I use my laptop a lot for gaming despite the fact that it is a fairly mediocre laptop and I was wondering where areas for improvement were (preferably cheapest) and if it would even be worth upgrading it. I have absolutely no idea how to change things within the laptop so I would probably look to taking it to a shop or techguys at pcworld or something.

I have a Packard Bell easynoteTJ61 and the hardware is as follows (taking via use of speccy);

processor - AMD Athlon X2 Dual-Core QL-65 2.10GHz (runs v. hot; currently 90 degrees centigrade as typing)

RAM - 4.0GB DDR2 @ 333MHz (5-5-5-15) (3.75GB usable)

Motherboard - Packard Bell SJV50PU (Socket S1G2)

Graphics - ATI Radeon HD 3200 Graphics

If any more information is required please let me know. Thanks
a b D Laptop
February 27, 2011 12:34:23 PM

There really aren't any areas you can improve upon hard ware wise.
1. Your CPU is an old model that isn't made any more so it will be tough to replace. You can try ebay and see if anyone is selling any CPUs that are faster and will fit your motherboard.
2. You already have 4gb of RAM. Since you say that only 3.75 is usable, I'm assuming that you have the 32bit version of Windows XP. Thus, adding more RAM would be a waste of time and money.
3. Laptop graphics cards generally cannot be replaced. Yours is integrated into the motherboard which reduces the chances of an upgrade even more.

You said that your CPU is running really hot. Have you cleaned the dust out of the cooling vents recently? Dust can really affect heat build up in a laptop, so keeping it clean is key. Your CPU really shouldn't be that hot to begin with. 90 C is borderline harmful for the CPU (they have an automatic shutdown point of around 100 C).
February 27, 2011 1:18:10 PM

OK no worries, thanks for replying anyway. I have cleared the vents and attempted (yes, attempted :whistle:  ) to open the laptop and clear the fan although I managed to get stuck at removing the panel with touch buttons on above the keyboard (couldn't find any manuals on taking my specific laptop apart). I have read that my processor is known to get extensively hot although I have experienced a few overheats this week which has lead to me thinking that the fan is possibly broken.

As for the OS, I have windows 7 64bit (dont know if that makes any difference to my options?).
a b D Laptop
February 27, 2011 5:00:55 PM

^Sounds like it could be a fan issue or the thermal paste has dried out.

The OS isn't going to make a huge in your options. You can technically add more RAM, but you won't really see any improvement. Looking back on my earlier comment about the RAM, it's the fact that your integrated graphics card is borrowing system memory which is normal.
!