Help..upgrading my comp

Hello peoples

Um I need some help. I want to get a computer or upgrade mine so it will perform well. All I want to do is run games on it such as w.o.w., doom, fear, unreal,and oblivion,with no problem.

I currently have
processor-intel pentium 4 1.5ghz
video-32mb nvidia geforce mx200 agp graphics
120 gb ata hard drive
sound-integrated stereo audio
case-gateway micro-tower case
os-windows xp

and thats pretty much it.
I don’t want to spend over $1,000 so thats my limit.

all help would be appreciated.

For a cheap gaming machine, here’s what I recommend for the main components (prices are from

AMD Athlon 64 3700+ San Diego ($235)
nVidia GeForce 7900GT - eVGA 7900GT Signature ($360)
MSI K8N Neo4 SLI ($87 Open Box)
OCZ Value Series 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR 400 PC3200 RAM ($142 after $18 MIR)
Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD2500KS 250GB 7200RPM 16MB Cache ($80 after $10 MIR)

Total = $904 before shipping and tax

I know it seems like a low of money but this is the best and cheapest you can get for a great gaming machine (based on my opinion). The video card is definately the most important part of a gaming machine, and the eVGA 7900GT Signature is the fastest 7900GT model at 600Mhz. The Athlon 64 3700+ runs at 2.2 Ghz which is enough to run the latest PC games, but if you want to save on costs then you can get the 3500+ which is the same except has 512KB L2 cache (3700+ has 1MB L2 cache). The nForce4 SLI chipset is great and the motherboard has an extra PCI-E slot in case you want to put in another video card. The rest of the parts are self-explanatory. You’ll want a new power supply too.

These upgrades should run new PC games very smoothly with no problems at all.

You know, I have a 1.5 ghz processor in my PC and a geforce FX 5200-256 graphics card, along with a gig of ram, and I can play games just fine.

I mean they don’t look like xbox 360 quality or whatever, but it suits me just fine. doom runs ok, but I don’t really play it.

Thanks Rakukojin you helped alot. Time to do some shopping.

fairly good pics but I would buy a dual core proc ie the 3800+ x2 amd64

The reason being new games are starting to use dual core

I recommended he get the AMD Athlon 64 3700+ over the X2 3800+ because right now the 3700+ outperforms the X2 3800+ (the 3700+ is also a great overclocker). Not only that, but it’s cheaper as well. Until there’s more games and programs that utilizes the dual core, you don’t really need it unless you want to be “future-proof” (maybe in like 2 years).

You can reduce the cost of the system by about $60 if you reduce the 2GB of ram to 1GB. The only game that it’s really noticable in is WoW at times, in other games the difference is maybe 2%, unless your running word and having a video playing in the background for no reason. If wow is your life tho, stay with 2G i guess.

No, I would stay with the 2GB. Games like BF2 and FEAR (IIRC) do make use of the extra gig, along with other apps.

I would recommend waiting until July to choose a system, but if you have to get something now, I would go with:

AMD Athlon 64 3200+ - $135
ASUS A8N5X - $79
G. Skill 2x1GB DDR400 SDRAM - $149
Sapphire X1800XT 512MB PCI-e - $300
Enhance ENP-5150G - $63

Antec SLK3000B - $29


Ever Case E4252BB - $37
Yate Loon D12SL-12 120mm fan - $6 (the SLK3000B comes with a decent fan, the E4252BB does not)

Sub-total: $755/769

Optional stuff:

Zalmn ZM-NB47J passive chipset cooler - $6
Another Yate Loon D12SL-12 120mm fan - $6 - put in the front, assuming you get the SLK3000B, or you cut the E4252BB a bit

What kind of speakers do you have?

I will explain my choices: any CPU (for games) is sufficient as long as the video card is the limiting factor, or vice versa. But, in order to put more of a load on the CPU, we need to move up to the next fastest video card, and with a $1000 budget, you can’t afford that. So I think this pairing-up of the 3200+ - which, incidentally, is faster than the Intel offerings at the same price - and the X1800XT is the fastest possible for $1000. In Oblivion, the X1800XT puts out the highest minimum and average frame rates except for the 7900GTX, the X1900XT, and the X1900XTX. He can’t afford those cards. On a related note, the 3200+ might limit the video card, but it will not (at least in Oblivion at 1280x1024) when overclocked to ~2.4GHz, which almost all 3200+ CPUs can hit.

// NO LONGER APPLICABLE // The Samsung 250GB drive is pretty cheap and is the quietest 3.5" drive out there at the moment. With all the other fans in the system (I didn’t pick for quietness), this may not be appreciable, but he may, in the future, want to quiet things down a little bit, and this way he won’t have to get another drive if he replaces everything else.

The Enhance ENP-5150G PSU is a hidden gem. For $63, it’s only $13 more than the popular Fortron AX450-PN (which does provide a lot of power for its price), but the Enhance should last much longer because it uses higher quality parts - capacitors, in specific. Don’t get me wrong; Fortron makes some very high quality PSUs - just not their AX line.

Both the SLK3000B and the E4252BB are easy to work with and are sturdy, save for the SLK’s door, which some people find to be flimsy. The E4252BB has no such door. The SLK has 120mm fan mounts front and rear for better cooling, while the E4252BB has a 120mm fan mount at the rear and a 80mm/92mm mount at the bottom front. However, if you don’t mind cutting into the steel, you can easily put a 120mm fan there. FWIW, I would buy an E4252BB BUT both are high-quality cases (in fact the SLK3000B is a variant of the E4252BB). At those price points, they’re literally a steal.

Sorry I have a 120 gb hard drive. and I just have two little speakers and a sub made by logitech maybe about 70 watts. nothin special.
Thanks you guys, i’ll prob hold off on buying anything until I get more info.

In that case, I wouldn’t get another HD unless you were cramped for space.

If the speakers are fine, you don’t need new ones.

green…why you say wait for july? new stuff, price drops?

I’m curious as to the source of the 2g issue still. BF2 specifically since it is one of the games identified as not benefitting much between 1g and 2g ram. Does this happen under normal circumstances? or is it more of a special case when you might want to run larger resolutions that are not normally used? Not to say that one is ‘better’ than the other, but it would help me to know when 2g actually gives a performance boost in gaming.

EDIT: Sorry first post was messed up

This is more specifically addressed to FEAR, but I have read user reports of BF2 feeling smoother (probably less HD seeks) during gameplay.


Go to my site and download MemStatus:

Leave it open in the background while playing whatever game. After playing look under System Memory. If Peak is not over 75% you do not need more RAM.

VERY few games use over 1GB.

Hellhound, more then anything your video card is garbage (for the kind of gaming your wanting to do). Before you buy a whole new system I would suggest replacing the video and put in 1GB of RAM. See how that runs the games you want to play, it just may be fine after those two things.
If not, you still got 1GB and a quality video card to put in the new system. So there’s no risk in trying, before shelling out for a new system.

-Bean I

gotcha thanks alot LBt…
video card garbage huh? My minesweeper works without flaw :o)

recommend anything on this page?

I would still buy a good video card

I am not clicking on each of those systems to see how they’re configured.

prob between the two

Out of the two, go for that one since there’s a PCI-E x16 slot where you can put a new video card in since the stock card is really weak.