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Old 01-25-2007, 04:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Hello all,

I'm trying to get my dorm room PC upgraded to save a few $$. I currently have a $300 budget and want to get the most out of my PC. I talked to several computer majors who all seemed to agree I need to do something with my motherboard as it is out dated and could be bought for about $30 on tiger direct.

What I'd like to do is change out the motherboard and if you think so the processor. I went on pcpitstop to do a scan to give you guys better details of my current settings so that you may advise me to the best solution.

Ram: 1024 mb (2 512's) Dimmsdram;
Operating System: Windows XP Pro SP 2
Hardrive: 131061 MB Total (99010 MB Free)
Motherboard: MSI MS-6741
Processor: AMD Athlon 64 2800+ 1800 mhz
Graphics Card: NVidia Geforce fx 5500
Security: Synmantec Antivirus

I believe I am getting a new graphics card from a friend so my goal is to find a new motherboard that is more compatible with my ram as well as my case which I believe according to my motherboard product # is an Mini ATX though it still could be an ATX for all I know *shrugs*. Anyways what exact route should I go with my AMD motherboard and then processor? This computer is mostly for school work, dvd's, and games.
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Old 01-25-2007, 07:24 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What kind of graphics card are you getting, agp or pci-e?
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Old 01-25-2007, 07:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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It's a PCI Express Card, I forget the name off hand but it's fully Vista compatible.
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Old 01-25-2007, 08:35 PM   #4 (permalink)
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These are the options that I can think of.
Assuming that you are gettting the video card for free.

1) Get a socket 754 motherboard with pci-e support.
* cheap but will hold you back in gaming, multitasking etc.
* can reuse most of your parts
* about $50-60

2) Get an AMD socket 939 cpu and motherboard with pci-e
* recommended with your budget
* ok, not to fast, not to slow
* can reuse your ddr ram
* about $150-300 depending what you want to get

3) Get an intel core2duo cpu, motherboard, 1GB ddr2 ram.
* best solution if you can get a budget of $400
* fast, future upgrades, new technology
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Old 01-25-2007, 09:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
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From what your suggesting I think an AMD 939 cpu and motherboard would be the best.

Now I guess my question is where is the best place to get these two where I'll see a clear performance that is better then my current ones that I have for 300 cumulative.
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Old 01-25-2007, 09:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Best place is www.newegg.com.
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Old 01-25-2007, 09:56 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Last question and I'm not sure if I can do this or not. The main game I want to play is Oblivion, not sure if your familiar with it.

Like I said before I want to try and reuse everything from the Windows XP operating system to the hard drive, the case, and the memory. As I understand what your saying, an AMD socket 939 is still going to be compatible with all of this. And would it matter whether I select an ATX motherboard or does it have to be a mini ATX? According to my motherboard information, my current one is a mini ATX.

As far as processors and motherboards, is there any chance I can get everything compatible with possibly an AMD Athlon 64 X2, which I believe requires an AM2 socket?
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Old 01-25-2007, 10:19 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Socket 939 also has AMD Athlon 64 X2, the reason why I didn't mention the am2 is because it requires ddr2 ram.

If you get ddr2 ram, it's best to go with the intel core2duo build since, even the slowest of the core2duo cpu will match or beat even the best of the amd cpu

You can go here to check on some cpu comparisons.
http://www23.tomshardware.com/cpu.html

Most of the motherboards for s939 support your parts and should be compatible. If you want to check to make sure, just post your parts.

Also, if your case is mini ATX then you will need an mini ATX motherboard. However if your case is ATX, you can get either
mini ATX or ATX.
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Old 01-25-2007, 10:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Just remembered, you should check your power supply too. See if it has enough power and right connectors for your new parts.
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Old 01-25-2007, 10:40 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I hope you still have your XP disk, you can't just put the hard drive in your new motherboard and expect it to work. Also a 939 build would definitely be the way to go, you can get a 4000+ for 80 bucks now.
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