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Old 02-25-2011, 11:07 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Upgrading my older gaming box

I have a Abit Kn9 SLi which had a athlon x2 3200 (may have been a 3000, kinda gone and forgotten), I last month I put in a 64 5600 x2 dual core (coolermaster Hyper TX3 92mm HP CPU Cooler) type and am loving that, but want to bring the rest of the PC out of the dark ages for win 7 64bit. so I am kinda making sure I have a balance planned. I ran the RC1 with the 9500 GT and the old processor and all was well, so I think we are only moving to the good now that I have the budget to play with) I am on a budget of $250 (not including win 7)

gefore 9500GT is being replaced with a 9800GTS or 8800GTS (considering running 9500GT for physx, but not sure theres much reason)
from 3gig 800 ddr2 up to 6gig 800 ddr2 still using matched pairs
Pushed by a 500W power supply.

eXtreme Power Supply Calculator

I went here and added my stuff up with both vid cards and this is what it told me.
Minimum PSU Wattage: 401 W
Recommended : 451 W
have a 500W
So my point, will this be a better gaming experience or should I stop while I'm ahead? I really cannot afford a new MB and chipset, if I do I want to go DDR3, and that will become even more expensive. I have had a solid positive experience with my rig and it still does pretty good for itself, but my budget and seeing what is out there for 400 dollars and using them (cost of win7+upgrades) I don't see how I will get my money's worth going new budget..

anyway, thanks for the look any and all help is appreciated.

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Old 02-25-2011, 05:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my older gaming box

Not all Power Supplies are created equally. Most of your cheaper brands may say 500 watts but they would probably be rated as a 400 watt, or lower, by a better company.

Your CPU has a dual channel memory controller so you should use equal sized modules (equal speed is also preferred) in pairs of (2). As in 4GB (4x1GB) or (2x2GB) or 8GB (4x2GB) or (2x4GB).

If you've been using 3GB then your Memory Controller has been operating in Single Channel Mode which reduces your performance.

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Old 02-25-2011, 11:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my older gaming box

been using 2 512's and 2 1024's? so waht your saying is, I need hehe 4 2gigs
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Old 02-28-2011, 09:08 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my older gaming box

so I am BTT for followup on whether this 9800GT/8800GTS would be a good match, I hear you on the ram, and my PS is a NXZT/NZXT, it was the "upgrade option" when I ordered the case. not sure if its actually good or not, but its not on the list (not that that means much) and to clarify I need 2 sets of equal pairs for it to run in dual channel,I though having it as 2 512's and 2 1024's would be ok. ty for the help.
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Old 03-04-2011, 07:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my older gaming box

If you budget allows, I recommend moving up to a later model vide card, the GTS 450. See this review:

Nvidia GeForce GTS 450: Hello GF106, Farewell G92 : GeForce GTS 450: Farewell, G92

Note that on one page it shows the power requirements for the tested system.

Here is a good option - EVGA GTS 450 for $110 after rebate:

Newegg.com - EVGA 01G-P3-1450-TR GeForce GTS 450 (Fermi) 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card

A good source for general information about upgrading video cards can be found at upgradevideocards.com:

How to Upgrade Video Card

Splitting memory sizes as you have is not a problem, I have done the same thing and it works in dual channel mode. You just have to make sure you pair the memory in the right channels. When I installed mine, I found the instructions in the manual confusing and did not pair them correctly. However you can download a free app - CPU-Z - that tells you if dual channel mode is working. It also provides other helpful information. Just go to the memory tab and look in the upper right corner and it tells you if dual channel is working.

CPUID - System & hardware benchmark, monitoring, reporting

I am not familiar with the NXZT PSUs and could not find any decent reviews on by googling, which makes me a little wary.
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Old 03-06-2011, 02:25 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my older gaming box

kk, finally got around to playing with your idea rockyjohn. it was running in Dual mode just fine, lol, and still is now with 6 gig ty for pointing out CPU-z. in other news I do believe my PSU is suspect. lool, I was loaned an 8800 GT to try out this weekend, and it was not pretty. the card works fine in the donor pc, but when put in my machine it runs fine for a bit then gives red artifacts and locks. I was able to get one clean run on 3dmark06 (immediately after install) and it went from a 4401 to a 9000ish number. the card went back in the other PC and worked fine, and my 9500 GT made another pass and got a 4400ish number again. to me this says my PSU is overheating and causing voltage "issues" so I am biting the bullet and looking at an Ultra LSP750. the warranty is attractive, and I am way under the reported 78% efficiency (585 is 78%, I am needing around 380 with the 9500 gt and will be under 450w needed for two 9800 GTX SLi'd, now I'm not doing that, but running any two cards I might run that seemed like a healthy selection to give me an idea. it would surely be enough for most any addon's I could come up with. is this a safe bet PSU wise? the brand itself is listed on the better lists.

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