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PIII 850 Vs. PIII 1 GHz? Really that much faster?

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Anonymous
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May 20, 2001 10:23:53 PM

Hello Everyone.

I am a Gamer!!! I have a Dell Dimension XPS R 350, with a PII 350, 128 MB SDRAM, Diamond Viper V770 Ultra 32 mb video card, Turtle Beach Montiego (the first one) sound card, etc, etc... My MOBO can handle an upgrade all the way to a PIII 1 GHz. I have $250 to spend on this upgrade, and I have been back and forth with the thought of upgrading either the Processor or the Video Card. After this upgrade, I will upgrade either the Video Card or the Processor, (which ever one I don't upgrade first), in approx. 2 months, but I still don't know which to upgrade first.

I came up with another possiblity. I could spend the $250 on a PIII 850 and a new Sound Card. Either the Sound Blaster Live X-Gamer or the Phillips Acoustic Edge 5.1. My sound definitely needs to be upgraded for games, considering there are sounds I hear at my friends house that I've never heard at mine, and I have better speakers.

My question is:

Is the PIII 1 GHz really that much faster then the PIII 850??? From past articles at this web site, I've noticed that, for gaming, as long as you have the GeForce 2 64 MB DDR Ultra video card, the framerate increase start to become more video card responsive then CPU responsive. That could be my deciding factor to go with the PIII 850.

Help please.

Jack.
May 20, 2001 10:38:04 PM

I recommend you get the Pentium III 1GHz. You only save $60 going with a Pentium III 850MHz instead (http://www.pricewatch.com). Additionally, if you save the video card upgrade for about 2 months, the GeForce3 will be much cheaper and probably within your price range. Thus you will end up with both the best CPU for your motherboard and the best video card available. The price of the GeForce3 will be dropping much more than that of the Pentium III 1GHz over the next 2 months because it is a recent release.

-Raystonn

= The views stated herein are my personal views, and not necessarily the views of my employer. =
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May 21, 2001 2:29:10 AM

You don't seem to understand the NATURE OF THE BEAST! Even the PIII 866 is MUCH faster than the PIII 850, at least 15% in games, due to the increased memory bandwidth. The 850 runs at 100MHz FSB, the 866 at 133, that's where the performance is at. If your system can handle the regular (133FSB) PIII 1GHz, then GO FOR IT! If you decide to get something slower, get one with 133MHz FSB, such as the 866. The 850 is out of the question!

Cast not thine pearls before the swine
Related resources
May 21, 2001 2:47:55 AM

I just ordered the slot 1 P3-1000 on <A HREF="http://www.augustustech.com/" target="_new">http://www.augustustech.com/&lt;/A> for $248 for my PII-400 from dell. I'm sure it's worth it from what I've heard. I also ordered some memory. The only thing I'm not sure about is whether or not 440bx can support 256MB chips. Some say it can, but Dell has no clue..

Check this out....
<A HREF="http://roberthancock.netfirms.com/dell/" target="_new">http://roberthancock.netfirms.com/dell/&lt;/A>

<font color=red>Did you ever wonder WHY aliens only abduct idiots?</font color=red>
Anonymous
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May 21, 2001 3:08:36 AM

Thanks for the reply.

133mhz is out of the question. My Mobo won't support it. It is either 850 or 1 ghz with 100 mhz front side bus.

thanks.
Anonymous
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May 21, 2001 3:15:31 AM

dhlucke,

Is that processor on back order? I have heard that it was. Be careful with augustustech.com. I have called them twice asking about the status of the 1 GHz processor, and both times they came back to the phone talking about the FCPGA model, not the Slot 1 SECC.

It is still a tough decision for me. Many many many people have written back to me saying that for gaming/3d performance, I'm going to get a better increase in frame rates from a video card upgrade then from a processor upgrade. This point has also been made very clear from many of the articles at this web site. Now, I know that I need to upgrade my processor, and I will, but what I'm going to do in a few days might still be the video card upgrade first.

If that is not on back order, please tell me.

Thanks.
May 21, 2001 3:25:10 AM

A good video card isn't going to do much with a 350 Mhz machine. You need to do both as do I. For now though I'm going to just get the processor and some memory. I placed my order a couple minutes ago.

If augusttech screws around with me I'll just complain to my credit card company and that's the end of that. I dont' screw around with fraud. I read their reviews on resellerratings.com and wasn't impressed at all. Unfortionately this upgrade option isn't going to last long. I'm sure you've noticed as well that they are hard to come by and the prices are rising. Augusttech was a lot cheaper, and their shipping was reasonable.

<font color=red>Did you ever wonder WHY aliens only abduct idiots?</font color=red>
Anonymous
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May 21, 2001 3:27:24 AM

Even a Geforce 3 will not perform well on a PII 350. Your out-dated processor is a huge bottle neck. Upgrade your CPU to at least 850 mhz, then in 2 mo get a Geforce 3. In 2 months there will be a greater selection of GF3 cards and prices will be more affordable.

Keep your words soft and sweet 'cause you never know when you'll have to eat 'em.
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May 21, 2001 3:30:25 AM

Ohhhhhhh, the 1GHz/100 is VERY EXPENSIVE! I would stick to the 850 then! Actually much over 800 and the memory becomes a big bottleneck at only 100MHz.

Cast not thine pearls before the swine
May 21, 2001 3:36:01 AM

Yes, it cost a bit, but it's the last possible upgrade for this machine as well as his, so it's worth it to me. I'm hoping that it'll last me a couple years longer with the 1 Ghz and 256 MB of memory with a new video card down the road. It's a lot cheaper than ditching the whole rig and building an AMD.

<font color=red>Did you ever wonder WHY aliens only abduct idiots?</font color=red>
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May 21, 2001 3:45:42 AM

Does it use an ATX or proprietary motherboard? It would actually be cheaper, and perform better, to get an Asus CUSL2-C motherboard (for $120) and a 700E (for $98), then overclock the 700 to 933. Of course you would need PC133, which I have been able to purchase for 128MB@$28 for some time now. But you at least get the faster bus speed that way, 933 performance for a 700 price. And the 933 will definately outperfrom the 1GHz/100.

Cast not thine pearls before the swine
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May 21, 2001 3:49:30 AM

Oh, heck, you could even get a 900MHz T-Bird and a good motherboard for less than that 1GHz processor would cost you, and you wouldn't even NEED new memory. Plus you would have a Dell with an AMD processor, just to piss Micheal off.

Cast not thine pearls before the swine
May 21, 2001 6:08:57 AM

Thanks Crashman,

I chose not to do any of that for a couple of reasons.
1) I would need a new powersupply
2) I would need to tweak the case since it doesn't have a hole for another com port.
3) I have a ISA modem
4) I have PC100 memory as it is.
4) This is easier

Sure, it would be nice to have Ultra 100 and a 133 Mhz bus, but my plans still haven't changed: This will be my second computer for my wife once I scrape enough cash together for a Palamino in the Fall.

IF my order doesn't go through then yes, I will go that route since at that point it would be easier and way cheaper for me to just get a T-bird and O/C...

For now though, once the CPU shows up I'm up and running in 2 minutes. Kind of nice...

<font color=red>Did you ever wonder WHY aliens only abduct idiots?</font color=red>
Anonymous
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May 21, 2001 3:29:57 PM

Jepjep.. I was in about the same situation. I had a Dell Dimension XPST500 (BX board, P3-500). I thought my only choice was a P3-850, since no one could confirm a 1 Ghz would work in my board. I decided against the 850 however, since it gave me no upgrade path, and a too small performance increase (I guess comming from a 350, you'll be more happy)..

Anyway, here is what I did. I sold my motherboard, CPU, PC100 Ram and powersupply (you'll have noticed the extra connector). For the money I got, I bought a new KT133A board, PC133 Ram, and a 300w ATX PSU. I even had some money left over, so I got a used Duron 600 for $30 which runs hapily @933. Total cost of the upgrade: about $20 :-))))

If I would not have been able to overclock, it would still have been worth it.. I can upgrade to a Tbird or Palomino whenever I want to.. I have PC133, and even @600 Mhz the Duron is quite a performer.. at least as fast as my P3.

Anyway.. whether you go amd or intel, swapping the motherboard in the dimension case isnt really a problem. You can remove the plate that blocks the second COM port, and any ATX psu will work in the case. I also reused the cpu fan (shaft kind of thing); it serves perfectly as case fan now (had to glue it though.. but hey.. who cares).

The only problem is the LED's and power button.. had to solder a bit to get them hooked up to my new motherboard.


---- Owner of the only Dell computer with a AMD chip
May 21, 2001 7:15:26 PM

I cancelled my order. $250 for a 1 Ghz PIII was just bothering me. I couldn't justify spending that much for so little. AMD is just calling to me with their prices...

bbaeyens don't you think it would be worth it to just buy a new case? Where did you sell your old hardware?

<font color=red>Did you ever wonder WHY aliens only abduct idiots?</font color=red>
May 21, 2001 7:35:32 PM

<b>Where did you sell your old hardware?</b>
E-Bay?
May 21, 2001 8:02:39 PM

id personally go for an amd much nicer chip, and save money that way to buy an ultra... i nkow they say wait a month and that new graphics card will be out, then you wait a month and they say... no wait another month something else new is coming out... or the price is gonna drop... waiting isnt the best idea...

you do not strengthen teh weak by weakening the strong
Anonymous
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May 22, 2001 2:24:52 PM

"bbaeyens don't you think it would be worth it to just buy a new case? "

Yeah, I'd buy a new case. Sell your old bare bone system. I just wanted to perform a $0 upgrade.. I didnt quite succeed, but I just wanted to give it a try. I didnt sell my case, since I like the no tool chassis a lot, and wouldnt trade for anything but an Aopen maxi tower ;-) Also, I wanted to put this signature under my posts ;-)

"Where did you sell your old hardware?"
E-bay kind of site, here in Belgium. Got a ridiculous good price.. Or how would you call $220 for a BX board with broken PS/2 mouse connecter, 128 Mb PC100 a P3-500, and a 200W ATX psu ?

Two words of advice: get an Enermax powersupply. They are quite expensive, but oh so silent, and actually are a great help in cooling the system. When I upgraded from a no name 235 W ATW (with bottom intake) to the Enermax, I could throw out two case fans, and still have better temps.

Another word: get the best motherboard you can afford, and save on the cpu. CPU prices come down so fast, its better to upgrade regulary when you need to. A good MB is a joy for many years. Especially since AMD confirmed Palomino and even tbred should work in your current KT133A boards.

You may also have a look at ALI based motherboards. They may perform 1-2% worse, but seem to have a lot less issues. I dont mean to scare you with all these VIA issues, but I have to admit I recently ran into two of them, that I suspect to be VIA related; I cant get my Suspend-to-ram to work anymore under Windows 2000 (should probably downgrade my bios, cause it worked fine b4), and I happen to have an "old" Turtle Beach Montego II sound card, that just doesnt work properly in combination with the KT133A and windows 2000. I got fix though (that works, unless you suspend and resume). If you're interested, let me know, I'll find the URL for you. Better idea: get another soundcard that is properly supported.

Happy upgrading !

---- Owner of the only Dell computer with a AMD chip
!