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Old 08-08-2005, 04:11 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default pc upgrading (???'s about FSB, L2 cache)

Hi, this is my first post. I have some questions about upgrading my computer (basically building a new one, but for now I'm going to keep some of the parts. yes, I read some of the other threads about building them before posting this) to keep up with the games that are coming out. I can play HL2, BF2, etc. with the settings turned down but there is still a lot of lag when playing on line, sometimes even in really good servers with only a few people.

Here is what I have in my comp right now:
Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
Intel Pentium 4, 2600 MHz (13 x 200)
Dell Dimension 8300 (mobo)
Intel Canterwood i875P/E7210 chipset
512 MB (DDR SDRAM)
SAPPHIRE RADEON 9600 ATLANTIS (256 MB)
Intel 82801EB ICH5 - AC'97 Audio Controller
IC35L060AVV207-0 (60 GB, 7200 RPM, Ultra-ATA/100) hard drive


The first thing I want to do is get 1GB of RAM (link ). Would the kind in the link be a good choice, or can someone recommend something else?

After I get more RAM I want to switch to an AMD cpu and mobo. I have a few questions, though...

What does an L2 cache do, and how much will having a higher one effect the performance of my PC? Right now I have 512k, so to improve on that while getting an amd I'd have to buy the 3700 San Diego which is $279.

What does a FSB do, and how much will having a high FSB effect the performance of my computer? The 3700+ San Diego on newegg has 1GHz fsb, but for $50 more on another site I could get the same cpu but with 2GHz fsb. Would that be worth it?

Does the fsb on the CPU have to match that of the mobo? I've never seen a mobo that had a 2GHz fsb, the highest I've seen is 1GHz.

Thanks in advance for helping me out, I'll probably have more questions later.
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Old 08-08-2005, 04:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Ok, the ram you suggested will be perfect, won't overclock well though, but otherwise a very good choice.

L2 Cache, just like other Cache, just is very fast memory on the CPU. So this is were common used intructions are stored to speed up procesing. The more the better, but it's very expensive.

FSB= Front Side Bus. The two sites you listed actually are the same, both are 2000mhz it's just a different way of looking at it.

Just match the socket, a 939 processor will work perfectly with a socket 939 board, the FSB will match.
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Old 08-08-2005, 04:59 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks.

So these are the same then?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...39#DetailSpecs
http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...Tab=2&NoMapp=0

Is it worth paying the $$$ for the 3700+, or should I save some cash to upgrade my video card later by getting a cheaper processor? I mainly want to upgrade it for gaming, but I use my comp for a lot of other stuff so I want it to be able to multi-task well (right now it's horrible for multitasking). When I compile a map that I'm working on for HL2 the cpu usage jumps up to 100% and it acts like it's frozen until the map is done compiling, and that can take a while depending on the size of the map.

I have a problem, though. My video card is AGP so I need to get a mobo with an AGP slot until I can afford a new video card right? I can't find any mobos on newegg that are AMD-compatible with an AGP slot and a PCI-e x16 slot (for the inevitable video card upgrade).
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Old 08-08-2005, 08:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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you cpu is plenty powerfull, u should even get an 3200 and then put more money into a video card, that would for sure be better than a good cpu and a **** card, btw don't go AGP, get pci express, one hell of a lot more future-proof and twice the speed
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Old 08-08-2005, 08:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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get this video card if your on a budget

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814130214

and this cpu will be perfect

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16819103537

remeber this is a budget system
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Old 08-08-2005, 08:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I wasn't planning on getting everything at once, which means that if I don't get the CPU, mobo, and video card at the same time then I won't be able to use any of them until I get the rest.

I know that video card is a lot faster, but it's half the memory... how much of an improvement over the card I have would that be?

I think spending the extra cash to get something with twice the memory, twice the memory interface, and more pixel pipelines like this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16814102496
would be better.

If the amount of memory on the card doesn't really matter as much as the speed I might go with the card you suggested, though.

So why does tigerdirect say everything has twice as much FSB as newegg?

Thanks for the help.
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Old 08-10-2005, 12:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Sorry to post again but I need some help...

How important is the amount of memory in the video card compared to the speed? I'm sure that video card is a lot faster than the one I have now but it's half the memory.

Why does tigerdirect say everything has twice as much FSB as newegg?

Would getting 2GB of cheap-ish RAM be better than just having 1GB of good quality RAM in dual channel? Everything I've read said more=better with RAM, but doesn't mention the speed. The thing is I could get 2GB of RAM for like $170, or I could get just 1 gig of better ram for the same price...
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