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Old 04-08-2011, 10:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

I have a Acer Aspire T180 desktop PC and I’m looking to update it and turn it into the living room entertainment PC. Looking to get great HD streaming for things like Netflix etc… maybe play blu ray movies. Will do some gaming but nothing to heavy. I play almost all my games on Xbox or PS3. The girlfriend dose play some casual games on the desktop. I may from time to time want to play some gfx intense games on the desktop after the upgrade. The desktop is hooked up to a Samsung HL-S5087WX/xaa1080P HDTV. You can see the rear display from that link. I have the PC hooked up into the “PC In” 15 pin connection and the sound is going into “Audio” 8mm jack in the PC In hookup. The cable is a red/white to a 8mm jack cable. So you can imagine it sounds bad. When you play the sound it only plays on 2 of the speakers and I have full 5.1 surround sound.

Here are the specs on the desktop as it sits now.

OS: Windows Vista (Home Basic) Service Pack 2.
Processor: AMD Athlon 64x2 Dual Core Processor 4000+, 2,100 MHz.
Memory: 2GB (Upgraded from 256MB, forgot the type/speed) Upgradeable to 4GB.
Expansion Slots: 1 PCI-Express x16 slot, 2 PCI v2.3 slots.
PSU: 250 Watt.
Audio: Integrated nVidia MCP61 with AC97.
Video: Integrated nVidia MCP61.
Storage: 120Gig Hard drive.
CD Drive: DVD/CD-RW Combo (One bay open.)
Networking: Integrated Marvell 88E8056 Gigabit (RJ-45 LAN connector)

I know I’m probably forgetting to list some stuff, you’ll have to forgive me. I haven’t done this in years. But at any rate this was the direction I was thinking about going and the items I was thinking about upgrading. So this is where I need help. Any suggestions on the items I’m choosing would be great. I haven’t keep up over the years with what’s out there so I know a lot of you may know something better to use.

1) Ram: I wanted to get 4 Gigs of ram. From looking at the Specifications on Acers web site it looks like I can use at best DDR2 800 SDRAM. I found Kingston ValueRAM 2GB 800MHz PC2-6400 DDR2 for $30.80 with free shipping from Amazon.com.

2) Graphics Card: I would like to get one that has HDMI on it and be able to run sound through it, but I don’t know if my motherboard can do that or not. Maybe someone here knows if it can? Here are a few Gfx cards I was eyeing.
-Evga GeForce GT 430 1 GB DDR3$69.99 with free shipping from Amazon.com.
-Sapphire Radeon HD 5570 - 1 GB DDR3 $64.99 with free shipping from Amazon.com.
I was kind of hoping to stay in this price range or lower.

3) PSU: Diablotek 450-Watt ATX Power Supply $29.99 With free shipping from Amazon.com.

4) Sound Card: Creative Labs SB1040 PCI Express Sound Blaster $53.99 free shipping from Amazon.com. I really don’t want to spend to much for a sound card if I don’t have to. I really don’t know which one to get. Need some advice on this one.

5) Blu Ray Drive: LITE-ON 4x Blu-ray Disc SATA Internal Optical Drive with free shipping from Amazon.com. Was hoping to stay in this price range as well on this drive.

So these are the things I’m trying to upgrade and that’s what ive found so far. Will these items work in my PC, is there better ones I should get or are there better deals. Need advice and help.

Thank you.
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Old 04-09-2011, 03:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

2 things;
-the hd 5570 card you chose does not have a HDMi port, gt 430 does have a HDMI port.
-strongly recommend you to use a better quality power supply.
other than that, everything else looks good.
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Old 04-09-2011, 04:43 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

I went to my loical Comp USA store today and found these deals.

XFX ATI Radeon HD 5670 1 GB DDR5 for $69.99 after $20 mail in rebate and $10 instent discount. I liked this one alot. Can run 7.1 sound through it. If I use this one will I need to upgrade my power supply?

XFX Radeon HD 5550 1 GB DDR2 HDMI I found this one there also. Seemed like a really good deal. $34.99 after $30 mail in rebate. But i'm not sure if it can do the sound or not. This one also, will I need a new power supply?

Lifetime Series Pro 650W Psu They had this PSU in the clearence section for $48.88. Was just an open box. Regular price said $99.99. It would have more then enough power for what i'm going to do. But is it any good?

So will these work in my system and are they any good?
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Old 04-09-2011, 06:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

Not familiar with the PSU you listed, I personally wouldn't choose it. It's best to go with a highly-reputable company when purchasing a PSU. You wouldn't want to have a bad PSU that will be powering your PC and possibly damage your components.

Also if you are planning to build an entertainment PC as you claim, you might want to reconsider the 120g HDD.
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Old 04-10-2011, 09:40 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

Ultra makes the most unreliable power supplies on the Planet. Buy a Antec, Corsair, Enermax, OCZ power supply, or ask us 1st.
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Old 04-14-2011, 04:07 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

Okay I popped on this PSU, Corsair CMPSU-430CX CX Series 430-watt Power Supply Seemed like one of the better deals out there for this PSU. Free shipping and only cost $45.82.

I will be getting the XFX ATI Radeon HD 5670 1 GB DDR5 tommrow.
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Old 04-14-2011, 04:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

go for Gigabyte 585W Odin Series power supply (about $60.00) and the GT430 i was using both up until recently and never had any problems you will even be able to play some good games on the 430 too. the 430 also comes with HDMI port which will be essential for those HD movies you wanna watch (the sound doesn't really depend on the M/B).
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Old 04-14-2011, 04:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

Arent the CX models bad, too?
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Old 04-14-2011, 05:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

From the overall reviews on amazon, newegg and tiger the it seemed like a good buy.

The gt430 card, would you say it's better then the xfx 5570?
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Old 04-14-2011, 05:28 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Upgrading my PC and need suggestions, advice and some help.

GT 430 1gb Vs ATI 5570 1gb what is the best for gaming - Graphics-Cards - Graphic-Displays

CX - Corsair CX Series Compilation
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