Matrix Games Forums

Forums  Register  Login  Photo Gallery  Member List  Search  Calendars  FAQ 

My Profile  Inbox  Address Book  My Subscription  My Forums  Log Out

Upgrading my computer

 
View related threads: (in this forum | in all forums)

Logged in as: Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >> [General] >> General Discussion >> Upgrading my computer Page: [1]
Login
Message << Older Topic   Newer Topic >>
Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 4:52:23 AM   
dicedtomato

 

Posts: 17
Joined: 7/8/2004
Status: offline
I've pretty much played strategy games, but I'd like to try first-person-shooters. The problem is that I have a four-year-old Dell 2.2 Ghz with 512 Mb, a 40 Gig HD and an old Geforce MX420 card.

I'd like to spend no more than $200 to $250 to upgrade. I figure I don't need a new computer as long as I upgrade to 1 GB of RAM (about $100 for PC2100) and a new video card. What kind of card do I need - that's in the $100 to $150 range?

DT
Post #: 1
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 5:10:29 AM   
Tankerace


Posts: 6399
Joined: 3/21/2003
From: Stillwater, OK, United States
Status: offline
I've got a 128mb Geforce 5200. By no means top of the line, but I can play most games (although on some I have to turn the graphics down), and I paid 77 USD for it. (that was a year and a half ago).

_____________________________


Designer of War Plan Orange
Producer of Carrier Force
Allied Naval OOBer of Admiral's Edition

Avatar is of me with my 1918/1967 FTR Ishapore Sht LE Mk III*.

(in reply to dicedtomato)
Post #: 2
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 9:48:42 AM   
JudgeDredd


Posts: 8561
Joined: 11/14/2003
From: Scotland
Status: offline
If you can get one, a Geforce 6600GT - definitely the most bang for buck mid range card
Amazon.com $139.99
Mwave.com $139.00
TigerDirect.com $139.99
ClubIT.com $145.99

Here's the link http://www.dealtime.com/xPC-EVGA_GF_6600GT_128MB_AGP

_____________________________

Alba gu' brath

(in reply to Tankerace)
Post #: 3
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 9:54:33 AM   
Kung Karl

 

Posts: 322
Joined: 7/1/2003
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Tankerace

I've got a 128mb Geforce 5200. By no means top of the line, but I can play most games (although on some I have to turn the graphics down), and I paid 77 USD for it. (that was a year and a half ago).


Stay away from the 5200!

If you want to be able to play FPS games the lowest card you should buy is a GF6600GT or ATI X700pro. Do not buy a GF6600, it must be the GT version. Those two crads are the lowest card you should consider. Even with them modern 3D games can't be played on maximum graphics. If you have the money get a more highend end card. Myself I got men an ATI X700 but I should have gone higher. Now It seems I threw away those money because the crad can't play 3D games satisfactionry. But then again, I like my games without stuttering or framedrops.

(in reply to Tankerace)
Post #: 4
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 10:17:56 AM   
rhondabrwn


Posts: 2582
Joined: 9/29/2004
From: Snowflake, Arizona
Status: offline
Getting a good video card is an excellent investment. It will really help compensate for a slower CPU and you can always move it into a new box if you do upgrade your CPU. Example: I bought a top of the line (at the time) ATI 9700 All-in-Wonder about three years ago. I'm running a 2 gig AMD 2400+ CPU with 768 Meg of RAM and I can still play anything with all settings maxxed out. The card was expensive ($379), but since it's kept me competitive for three years, the cost is actually pretty reasonable (versus buying lower priced cards that would have had to be replaced by now).

That said, once I get my tax refund I expect to be building a new 64 bit dual-core screamer for video work. I'll be buying a top of the line video card for it.

_____________________________

Love & Peace,

Far Dareis Mai

My old Piczo site seems to be gone, so no more Navajo Nation pics :(

(in reply to Kung Karl)
Post #: 5
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 1:21:10 PM   
Kuokkanen

 

Posts: 3123
Joined: 4/2/2004
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: dicedtomato

I've pretty much played strategy games, but I'd like to try first-person-shooters. The problem is that I have a four-year-old Dell 2.2 Ghz with 512 Mb, a 40 Gig HD and an old Geforce MX420 card.

Not exactly for Quake 4 but Operation: Flashpoint should run on it. Graphic adapter could be changed.

(in reply to dicedtomato)
Post #: 6
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 1:47:14 PM   
Raverdave


Posts: 6520
Joined: 2/8/2002
From: Melb. Australia
Status: offline
Always helps to get more RAM.......try and double what you have now if your MB will allow it.

_____________________________




Never argue with an idiot, he will only drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

(in reply to Kuokkanen)
Post #: 7
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 4:46:34 PM   
mbelew


Posts: 315
Joined: 6/21/2004
Status: offline
quote:

If you can get one, a Geforce 6600GT - definitely the most bang for buck mid range card
Amazon.com $139.99
Mwave.com $139.00
TigerDirect.com $139.99
ClubIT.com $145.99


I second this suggestion. This chipset is ranked highly on Tom's hardware, and it has all the bells and whistles for advanced graphics rendering.

(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 8
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 4:55:34 PM   
JudgeDredd


Posts: 8561
Joined: 11/14/2003
From: Scotland
Status: offline
Also, the GT6600GT comes with VTuner for overclocking

_____________________________

Alba gu' brath

(in reply to mbelew)
Post #: 9
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 5:08:35 PM   
wodin


Posts: 9973
Joined: 4/20/2003
From: England
Status: offline
Get a 6600GT and another 512 mem.

_____________________________


(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 10
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 5:13:39 PM   
Mr.Frag


Posts: 13410
Joined: 12/18/2002
From: Purgatory
Status: offline
Be aware that while the video card will help, it is not going to take you to the moon, all it will do is shift the problem back onto your CPU and you'll now be CPU speed bound instead of Video speed bound.

What happens with video upgrades is a nasty trap ... you get a new card, you crank up the video options in your games, and you end up with a slower overall speed then before you upgraded.

You machine is really incapable of driving a 6600GT fully (takes about a 3GHz processor to really make use of it)

You might simply be better to keep your money in the bank and continue stockpiling until you have the funds to replace the whole machine with someone elses used one when they upgrade.

Due to all the changes forcing those with AGP based systems to switch to PCI-Express based systems, lots of nice AGP based high end systems (ie: 3GHz'ish) are reselling for pretty cheap rates because virtually nothing can be carried forward to the new standards. Since you can't upgrade your motherboard without changing your cpu and ram and power supply and case, a lot of these come up for auctions at eBay.

(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 11
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 5:25:09 PM   
JudgeDredd


Posts: 8561
Joined: 11/14/2003
From: Scotland
Status: offline
Mr Frag is indeed correct...your CPU will indeed struggle to use the 6600GT to it's full potential...actually...it won't be able to keep up.

Replacing 1 component will sometimes work...but not always...sometimes it's just good to start fresh...however, if you have no foreseeable money coming that would enable you to start again, then I'm sure you would see the benefits fo a 6600GT. You certainly wouldn't be able to push it...but graphical, things should be on the up with a 2.2GHz.

Again, though, if you go and put a 6600GT AGP card in your computer and, in the enar future, upgrade to a new syste, that's the AGP gone because, as Mr Frag rightly said (again), components seldom cross over...and new motherboards are using PCI-E.

I have a 3200GHz AMD 64bit with 2GB ram and a 6600GT and my system has problems running some games (X3-Reunion) on maxed graphics...however, others are no problem. GT Legends >=60FPS, Quake4 >30FPS (except some places) and CoD2 >= 60FPS. Somtimes that will be down to code, though - how well the graphics engine is coded.

In short, if you see money coming your way and can wait, then wait...otherwise, I'd go ahead and stick the 6600GT in...I'm sure you'll see a difference. And it is only £100!

_____________________________

Alba gu' brath

(in reply to Mr.Frag)
Post #: 12
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 7:03:46 PM   
Marc von Martial


Posts: 10874
Joined: 1/4/2001
From: Bonn, Germany
Status: offline
If the machine is that old and on top of that a Dell () I would save the money and wait a bit. Buy a new rig then. The budget will get you either a new vid card or sufficient new RAM, but not both at the same time. Neither one alone will dramatically increase performance, the "old" CPU and the Mobo will thwart the new investment.

_____________________________


(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 13
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 7:29:59 PM   
Zakhal


Posts: 2491
Joined: 1/4/2001
From: Jyväskylä, Finland
Status: offline
Buy a 9800 PRO pref with 128mb memory. You can get one used for 50 bucks. Your old card basicly dies of shame in comparison. Geforce MX420 card is a broken lada stuck in mud somwhere in siberia while 9800 pro is the finest italian Ferrari shining in the sunlight.

9800 runs all latest games including half life 2. And you can get it cheap now.

_____________________________

"99.9% of all internet arguments are due to people not understanding someone else's point. The other 0.1% is arguing over made up statistics."- unknown poster
"Those who dont read history are destined to repeat it."– Edmund Burke

(in reply to Marc von Martial)
Post #: 14
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 8:39:22 PM   
Marc von Martial


Posts: 10874
Joined: 1/4/2001
From: Bonn, Germany
Status: offline
HL2 is a year old

_____________________________


(in reply to Zakhal)
Post #: 15
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/1/2006 11:34:29 PM   
dicedtomato

 

Posts: 17
Joined: 7/8/2004
Status: offline
Thanks for all the great advice, guys. I don't really need maximum graphics, as long as the game doesn't crash or stutter. I'm basically a strategy gamer who'd like to try some FPS games, so I don't want to spend a lot of money to play games that I might not get into. Right now, my computer is pretty much used for e-mail, Web surfing, MS Word, and wargames like War Plan Orange. The question is whether I need a new computer, or whether my old one is good enough with more RAM and a better video card.

DT



(in reply to Marc von Martial)
Post #: 16
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/2/2006 12:03:07 AM   
Mr.Frag


Posts: 13410
Joined: 12/18/2002
From: Purgatory
Status: offline
LOL, HL2!!!

Gaming rigs are judged by the games F.E.A.R. or Black & White 2 these days.

Here's where $700 cards get 21 frames a second on screamer machines!

(in reply to dicedtomato)
Post #: 17
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/2/2006 12:31:36 AM   
JudgeDredd


Posts: 8561
Joined: 11/14/2003
From: Scotland
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Mr.Frag

LOL, HL2!!!

Gaming rigs are judged by the games F.E.A.R. or Black & White 2 these days.

Here's where $700 cards get 21 frames a second on screamer machines!


In my humble opinion, more ram and a new card you would see a performance increase...however slight that may be. But to play new stuff or "recent" stuff, you will need a card that utilises pixel shader v2 (I think is the latest)....so a graphics card update is almost non-avoidable if you want to play some recent FPSs



_____________________________

Alba gu' brath

(in reply to Mr.Frag)
Post #: 18
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/2/2006 2:47:56 PM   
Kuokkanen

 

Posts: 3123
Joined: 4/2/2004
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: JudgeDredd

so a graphics card update is almost non-avoidable if you want to play some recent FPSs

For person, who has not played FPS type games before, I recommend get some less demanding and cheaper games to try it out before expensive investments for computer hardware. Recommendations goes for Half-Life, Unreal 2, Operation: Flashpoint and Command & Conquer: Renegade. All mentioned games have free demo versions to try them out.

(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 19
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/2/2006 4:46:17 PM   
Mr.Frag


Posts: 13410
Joined: 12/18/2002
From: Purgatory
Status: offline
quote:

pixel shader v2


Shader Model 3.0 programmable vertex and pixel shaders ... ATI only right now ... but nVidia is right around the corner with their new crop of cards.

Note the *programmable* part ... next generation of software is going to be scary ... they are just now starting to make the video driver software multithreaded in a manner to work better on multi-cpu machines. Even if the game doesn't support multi-cpu, your video will use it.

(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 20
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/2/2006 4:49:44 PM   
Mr.Frag


Posts: 13410
Joined: 12/18/2002
From: Purgatory
Status: offline
quote:

In my humble opinion, more ram and a new card you would see a performance increase


Oh, he will certainly see an increase, just wanted to do my civic duty and make sure he understood the catch behind the increase ... If he doesn't turn any more video settings on then he uses now he'll be fine, but human nature says he'll pull them sliders cause he can ... and a video card like that will let a lot of sliders be pulled with a net result of the cpu being so overworked he'll be thinking he downgraded instead of upgraded.

(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 21
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/2/2006 5:38:51 PM   
Trigger Happy


Posts: 819
Joined: 3/22/2004
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Mr.Frag

Note the *programmable* part ... next generation of software is going to be scary ... they are just now starting to make the video driver software multithreaded in a manner to work better on multi-cpu machines. Even if the game doesn't support multi-cpu, your video will use it.

Yeah, directX 10 games will be something to see to be belived. I seen a video somewhere of the next-gen Crytek engine. Simply astounding!

(in reply to Mr.Frag)
Post #: 22
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/3/2006 12:54:47 AM   
Zodiac


Posts: 10
Joined: 9/15/2004
From: Santa Cruz, CA
Status: offline
I'm planning on buying a new computer since I don't think its worthwhile upgrading my present one. Does anyone know if there is a way to transfer programs between computers (old to new) without having to reinstall all the programs? I know how to transfer data but the programs I don't.

< Message edited by Zodiac -- 2/3/2006 1:04:37 AM >


_____________________________

"He who makes a beast of himself relieves himself the pain of being a man. "
Hunter S. Thompson (1939 - 2005)


(in reply to Trigger Happy)
Post #: 23
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/3/2006 2:35:53 AM   
ravinhood


Posts: 3891
Joined: 10/23/2003
Status: offline
Or better yet, just stay away from FPSers. ;) I have BF1942 that will last me forever, and if you've played one you've played them all really. Just different "grapics" is all you really get, maybe a few tricks and tweaks of interface, but, down to the bottom line a shooter is a shooter and they grow old and boring just like anything else.

Now when great wargames start to require top of the line graphics cards and hardware upgrades that's when you might start thinking about it. But, really do wargames really need to go that far? When they could be putting all those graphics resources into better gameplay and always always better challenging AI?

That's the problem with mainstream titles, they "touch" on the graphics capabilities of the most recent cards and hardware and then jump to the next new thing without really putting enough effort into the capabilities of older cards and hardware the majority of gamers already have. PC's need to take a lesson from consoles, FIVE year periods of quality games for the same systems. ;)

(in reply to Zodiac)
Post #: 24
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/3/2006 10:01:58 AM   
JudgeDredd


Posts: 8561
Joined: 11/14/2003
From: Scotland
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Mr.Frag

quote:

In my humble opinion, more ram and a new card you would see a performance increase


Oh, he will certainly see an increase, just wanted to do my civic duty and make sure he understood the catch behind the increase ... If he doesn't turn any more video settings on then he uses now he'll be fine, but human nature says he'll pull them sliders cause he can ... and a video card like that will let a lot of sliders be pulled with a net result of the cpu being so overworked he'll be thinking he downgraded instead of upgraded.


Agreed and can concur - been there done that!

_____________________________

Alba gu' brath

(in reply to Mr.Frag)
Post #: 25
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/3/2006 10:07:52 AM   
JudgeDredd


Posts: 8561
Joined: 11/14/2003
From: Scotland
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: ravinhood

Or better yet, just stay away from FPSers. ;) I have BF1942 that will last me forever, and if you've played one you've played them all really. Just different "grapics" is all you really get, maybe a few tricks and tweaks of interface, but, down to the bottom line a shooter is a shooter and they grow old and boring just like anything else.

Now when great wargames start to require top of the line graphics cards and hardware upgrades that's when you might start thinking about it. But, really do wargames really need to go that far? When they could be putting all those graphics resources into better gameplay and always always better challenging AI?

That's the problem with mainstream titles, they "touch" on the graphics capabilities of the most recent cards and hardware and then jump to the next new thing without really putting enough effort into the capabilities of older cards and hardware the majority of gamers already have. PC's need to take a lesson from consoles, FIVE year periods of quality games for the same systems. ;)


There isn't a very "clean" way to do it because all programs will write to the registry...which means you need the registry...which means you're copying your computer configuration - including hardware and software, drivers etc, etc...

Norton Ghost? It's takes a complete image of your system. I've never used it for moving between two different computers though - so you will come across driver problems when you boot...whether those problems can be fixed simply by installing the new drivers, I don't know. Even if it was fixed by installing new drivers, it could leave your registry in a bit of a state.

Why didn't Microsoft go with dual registries - one for hardware and one for software, to facilitate this problem?

_____________________________

Alba gu' brath

(in reply to ravinhood)
Post #: 26
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/9/2006 7:30:23 AM   
Herr Colonel


Posts: 39
Joined: 3/26/2004
Status: offline
I just parted ways with about $250 and upped my 256MB to 1.3GB and my GeForce 4 Ti 4200 128MB to a 256MB GeForce 6200. Nvidia only for me - the card, plus the boost in memory, makes my 2GHz Athlon system run just about anything.

So far. I can't wait for six months to elapse and have THIS system obsolete.

_____________________________

Michael Eckenfels
Matrix Games Writer/Editor

(in reply to JudgeDredd)
Post #: 27
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/9/2006 7:47:39 PM   
Mr.Frag


Posts: 13410
Joined: 12/18/2002
From: Purgatory
Status: offline
quote:

So far. I can't wait for six months to elapse and have THIS system obsolete.


Why wait, install F.E.A.R. now and learn how obsolete it is already

Ray

(in reply to Herr Colonel)
Post #: 28
RE: Upgrading my computer - 2/9/2006 10:48:04 PM   
Texscripter

 

Posts: 13
Joined: 5/22/2003
From: Texas
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Mr.Frag

Why wait, install F.E.A.R. now and learn how obsolete it is already

Ray


Just finished playing F.E.A.R., actually - first game on the system with the upgrades in place. Ran without a hitch or a hiccup.


(in reply to Mr.Frag)
Post #: 29
Page:   [1]
All Forums >> [General] >> General Discussion >> Upgrading my computer Page: [1]
Jump to:





New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software © ASPPlayground.NET Advanced Edition 2.4.5 ANSI

0.143