computer upgrade questions

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by raand, Sep 10, 2009.

  1. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have a Dell Dimension 8400
    with a 3.4 GHz P4
    2 gigs or RAM
    8800GT 512MB PCIE
    Windows XP 32bit Pro

    I was wondering if it would help much to upgrade the graphics and the memory even more? It runs fairly well, but I have had the pc for 5 years now and have been making little upgrades here and there, I am just not sure when upgrading will stop really making a difference.

    I am thinking of maxing out the memory at 4gig and then maybe upgrading the graphics card. Any suggestions?
     
  2. OniMinion

    OniMinion ...recalls when this forum was actually about cars OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,894
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Indiana/Minnesota
    You need to look up your specific motherboard. I'm willing to bet its a micro-ATX specifically manufactured by Dell for Dell. If that is a case there is a chance it won't support 4 Gigs of RAM - at least not without a BIOS update.

    The graphic card is probably AGP instead of PCI Express. That alone would be enough to push me towards a new system. If you are not a hardcore gamer, a new Hard Drive (assuming SATA) and upgraded memory would have sufficient impact on improving performance.
     
  3. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    nope I know it is PCIE and that the motherboard will support up to 4 gig I have looked that up allready
     
  4. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    surprisingly for a 5 year old machine and a dell it was top notch when I bought it.
     
  5. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
  6. OniMinion

    OniMinion ...recalls when this forum was actually about cars OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,894
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Indiana/Minnesota
    Then go for it. Again you didn't specify if you are a gamer or not. It's relavant since if you like gaming a lot you'll find lots of slow downs with the newer games since their multiple-threaded applications (e.g., they like having Core 2 Duo or higher [NOT Pentium D though]).
     
  7. negative zero

    negative zero New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Messages:
    6,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    the Watchtower
    Buy this and keep your existing video card, hard drive, etc. Should be waaaaaay better than your current system.

    Is your hard drive and optical drive SATA or IDE? If both are IDE then you can still use this board but both will be on the same ide ribbon cable. That's not necessarily a bad thing but it all depends what you are doing.

    Also, I don't know if your case is mATX compatible. I've never used mATX so I don't know if everything would line up on the rear of the case.

    But this combo is a pretty darn good deal.

    Click and scroll to the bottom combo deal.............
     
  8. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    I do game, and this system has done well for me recently, just noticing a drop in FPS again which is when I usually upgrade the Graphics card.

    Any suggestions for an upgrade to the graphics card?
     
  9. SeeVinceRun

    SeeVinceRun Currently In Prison OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Messages:
    1,124
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    What PSU are you running? What is your budget?
     
  10. negative zero

    negative zero New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Messages:
    6,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    the Watchtower
    What game(s) do you play? I have an evga 8800GT and play COD: Word at War with everything pretty much maxed out. I play @ 1920*1200.
     
  11. DigiCrime

    DigiCrime If Only!

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2001
    Messages:
    32,996
    Likes Received:
    100
    Location:
    St. Louis
    It wont hurt it to push it to 4 gigs of ram, and a bigger PSU and graphics card but I dont think youll notice much difference in my opinion
     
  12. SeeVinceRun

    SeeVinceRun Currently In Prison OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Messages:
    1,124
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    I guess if he wanted to build a computer later, he could reuse his new GPU. Hell, id reuse the 8800gt, but if he wants something else at least it wont just be tossed out the window when its time to upgrade.

    But 4 gigs of sdram seems a little extreme to me. ESPECIALLY for XP.
     
  13. als54

    als54 OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2004
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    0
    Make sure you use high performance RAM, it will make all of the difference.
     
  14. SeeVinceRun

    SeeVinceRun Currently In Prison OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2005
    Messages:
    1,124
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Kansas City, MO
    Are you being serious right now?
     
  15. Homeless

    Homeless New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2004
    Messages:
    975
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    NY
    I'd save your money tbh and get something faster. Even if you put the best video card and as much ram as your mobo could handle, it's still a p4 at the end of the day
     
  16. als54

    als54 OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2004
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    0
    No I said it to be funny...:rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:
     
  17. rsxm5

    rsxm5 OT Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2002
    Messages:
    2,961
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Ok good, because I laughed :mamoru:
     
  18. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    I may need to upgrade the PSU again maybe I am not getting full performance out of the 8800gt I meant to look last night and I forgot. To be completely honest I am married and have a kid on the way so I am trying to drag as much life out of this P4 as I can, and still enjoy the occasional game.

    Thanks for the help and advice.
     
  19. Dobis P.R.

    Dobis P.R. Guest

    I wouldn't do anything other than reinstall the operating system and install two additional gigs of ram. The upgrade would run about $30.
     
  20. negative zero

    negative zero New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2003
    Messages:
    6,328
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    the Watchtower
    But if it's 32 bit OS then he can really only go up one more GB, right? i can't see that really helping much at all. Now, if his machine is bogged down with crap, a reinstall would bring life to it even if only for a while for "free".

    I know it's more than $30 but the link I posted earlier for the combo deal would be a brand new cpu that can easily go to ~3GHz dual core and then he could go to Win7 RC (at least for ~6 months) and utilize the 4GB RAM all for ~145. And the mobo would then be able to be upgraded to a quad core cpu down the road.
     
  21. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    I reinstall the OS every 2 years or so, I just did about a month ago when I set up a dual boot of Ubuntu.
     
  22. Dobis P.R.

    Dobis P.R. Guest

    He doesn't need a faster CPU. A SSD would provide greater overall benefit than the combo you're suggesting.
     
  23. DigiCrime

    DigiCrime If Only!

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2001
    Messages:
    32,996
    Likes Received:
    100
    Location:
    St. Louis
    You can never have enough ram in my opinion but 32bit OS limits you to the 3.25Gig mark but still its enough. However Dell cases... you won't find another board that fits it except Dell. So you can only upgrade the internal components of your system with better stuff but you might as well just build you a new computer from scratch then if you was going to go thru all that.
     
  24. Dobis P.R.

    Dobis P.R. Guest

    The limit for ram in a 32 bit system is 4 gigs. This limit is the combined total of physical ram and the paging file (virtual ram). If you install 4 gigs into a 32 bit system, the amount of ram seen by the computer will be 4 gigs minus the size of the paging file. I use 64 bit linux so this isn't a concern to me. My system can theoretically address 17,179,869,184 gigabytes of ram.
     
  25. raand

    raand New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,361
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yah the 4 gig limit is a pain, I also run linux on a seperate system and have around 8 gig.

    In summary I am thinking an upgrade to the RAM and maybe a better PSU are the best bang for the buck.

    A new motherboard is probably not an option unless I get a new tower Dell's Dimension 8400 cases are customized so i am not sure other mother boards will fit well.

    Thanks for the help again
     

Share This Page