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Thread: Upgrading




  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    2

    Default Upgrading

    So about 3 or 4 years ago I got this lovely new Alienware Area 51 pc for a christmas present from my parents. I'm not too great in hardware knowledge, so I need a bit of help upgrading it. I usually just use my PC to play World of Warcraft and quite a few other games, and I'm getting kind of laggy =p

    Basically I'm looking to upgrade my pc so that I can play games smoothly again and have the system last for a year or two. I'm really big into pvp and such with WoW, so I would love if the system could run the game with max settings. My budget is about $1,000 though I can go over it.

    My pc atm:
    p4 1.9ghz
    geforce 3 ti 500
    not quite sure what my motherboard is, but im pretty sure it needs to be replaced
    512 ram <-- not sure what kind it is, I'll probably need to buy new ones too
    400w Antec psu
    60g Seagate Barracuda ATA IV

    I'm also having a bit of a problem with my old soundcard so I'm hoping to just get a motherboard with a built in one.

    Well, I'm pretty sure I'm going to need to completely gut this pc and replace just about everything =x

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    925

    Default My 2 cents

    I suggest getting a mainboard with good reviews becuase you want something real stable for games.
    If you stick to the Intel line I can recommend the ASUS "P5GD1" mainboard since its about the most simple to overclock board you will ever find plus its rock solid stable. You'll need an Intel P4 LGA 775 CPU for it. My P4 3.0GHz is overclocked to a 3.6 GHz with no extra cooling and only a 2 degree increase in tempurature, plus everything is rock solid stable and I beleive I have all the most recent popular P.C. game titles in about every game catagory thats been run on this setup.
    Save some money and buy a refurbished ATI Radeon x700 pro based video card for around $100(US) at Newegg, it's plenty of graphics power for todays games and if you feel you need something better in a couple years, a GeForce 6800GT or something better might be a cheap upgrade by then.
    Invest heavy into a good PSU(Power supply unit) for stability and possible future upgrades. I really like the Fortron Blue Storm 500W ATX12V V2.0 Power Supply, very powerfull, very stable, and energy efficient which is good if you leave your P.C. on all the time like I do. I've noticed a bit of a cut in my electric bill from my old P.C. so this PSU has already paid for itself.
    I'd get some good quality system ram like Kingston HyperX Series 184 Pin 256MB X 2 for dual channel.
    Get an ATX case with good airflow, look for something you like.
    I think the Creative I-Trigue 2.1 3300 Speakers (80) is the best set of speakers around for the price even though they are only 2.1's. They are a little bit cheaper at Walmart than at Newegg after shipping cost. These babies sound like a $1000 stereo system paired with that mainboards onboard soundcard.
    A cheap Rosewill Optical Wheel Mouse ($6) gets the job done well for the price. It's very accurate.
    I've had good luck with this cheap keyboard (Aopen KB-966B/KB-966SB) $10, plus there is no sofware needed to make all of the top buttons function correctly in Win XP.

    Mainboard=$115
    CPU= $160 (3.0GHz)
    Video card=$105
    PSU=$85
    Ram=$120
    Case=$65
    Mouse & Keyboard=$20
    Speakers =$80

    Total = $750

    You should be able to salvage your drives from your old system and use them in this one. Maybe even your keyboard and mouse if they match your new cases color. You could probably even use your old case and buy a nice harddrive with the extra money. Just an idea.

    And this is just a suggestion if you want to replace your system with something more modern. You do have other options, like updating your video card and getting a faster CPU if your current mainboard supports one, which should be fine for the WOW game if you want the game to play a little better than it currently does on that system.
    Last edited by Spongebob; 04-12-2005 at 01:13 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Winnipeg, Canada
    Posts
    848

    Default Re: Upgrading

    That's a little bit of a panic upgrade don't you think? Sure the gfx card is a bit dated. When was the last time it was reformatted? A gfx card upgrade and a reinstall of windows would do you wonders.

    Quote from newegg: "Newegg.com does not test any product, including refurbished items. Refurbished components are therefore only tested by the original manufacturer. Due to the varying quality of manufacturer testing, YOU ARE TAKING A RISK BUYING REFURBISHED PRODUCTS. Refurbished items are OPEN BOX products that contain components that have previously been owned by other clients and returned to Newegg.com."
    Last edited by maximus7001; 04-12-2005 at 12:51 AM.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    925

    Default Re: Upgrading

    Quote Originally Posted by maximus7001
    Quote from newegg: "Newegg.com does not test any product, including refurbished items. Refurbished components are therefore only tested by the original manufacturer. Due to the varying quality of manufacturer testing, YOU ARE TAKING A RISK BUYING REFURBISHED PRODUCTS. Refurbished items are OPEN BOX products that contain components that have previously been owned by other clients and returned to Newegg.com."


    Does anyone have a Newegg horror story to tell?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Minnesota, United States
    Posts
    4,543

    Default Re: Upgrading

    The motherboard I'm using was refurbished... Overclocks as far as heat will let it. No Newegg horror story here.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Upgrading

    Ah :) thanks, but I was more interested in buying a motherboard/cpu/ram and a graphics card with the $1000 or so, I can salvage everything else, and I already have a new case (which I modded over winter break )

    Its not quite a panic upgrade, I've been wanting to do this for some time now, and with new things coming out in WoW, its prompted me to finally do it.

    Thanks for the input guys ^_^

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    925

    Default Re: Upgrading

    Quote Originally Posted by Yawgm0th
    The motherboard I'm using was refurbished... Overclocks as far as heat will let it. No Newegg horror story here.

    Most of my current systems and my old systems that I've sold off to upgrade have had refurbished parts in them, including a couple mainboards, a few video cards, System ram, a case, and this CPU but so far everything was good and is still running fine today. I've had a few NEW parts that I had to RMA though:(, but nothing too serious, Newegg usually bends their policies in my favor whenever something happens:), what a great place.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Minnesota, United States
    Posts
    4,543

    Default Re: Upgrading

    As for the upgrade...

    I'd say start a new motherboard, CPU, RAM, and GPU wouldn't be a terrible idea.

    I'd go for a cheap nForce 4 Ultra motherboard such as this.

    A GB of RAM should do.

    A Geforce 6800 GT or an X800 would be good choices for video cards.

    An Athlon 64 3500 would be a good choice of processor.

    That should go under your budget and be good. You'll probably want to go with a new power supply, though the current one may handle it. A 480w or so Antec or Thermaltake (two brands I tend to favor in this area to do numerous positive experiences) should do it. It would also be best to make sure it has a 24-pin power connector or at least an adapter.

    Stick with old CD and hard drives. Maybe you could get a new HDD if you wanted, but it's not as necessary as upgrading the CPU, processor, and RAM.

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