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Old 05-24-2011, 10:26 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default What should I upgrade? (Dell XPS 720 H2C)

So about about 5 years ago, I bought me Dell's top of the line gaming computer, the XPS 720 H2C. BIGGEST waste of money ever . I say that cause now I know you can build a better computer for the same $7,000 that I spent on this one. However, this computer has treated me well in these 5 years and has allowed me to play top of the line games without worries. Only in the past year have the demands of today's games finally caught up and I find myself having to lower graphics instead of the usual maxing everything out. Latest example, Crysis 2 and Bad Company 2 no longer run very smoothly on highest graphics when the environment is all exploding around you. So I've been forced to lower the graphic settings one step down.

My question is, with my limitations of this Dell XPS 720 H2C Motherboard and given my current specs, what can/should I upgrade to hopefully keep up with the demand of today's games? I'm mainly preparing myself for the release of Battlefield 3 and not just settling for "minimum specs".

My current specs:
Processor: Intel QX6800 factory overclocked to 3.73ghz
Ram: Corsair Dominator 8gb (4 x 2gb) PC2-8500 1066MHz 240-Pin DDR2 CL5 Dual Channel
Video Card: 2x nVidia GeForce 8800 Ultra SLI 768MB
Free Space: Not a prob.
OS: Windows Vista 64bit, soon to be Windows 7 64bit.

Inside the motherboard for reference:
Documentation

Thanks!
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Old 05-24-2011, 10:47 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: What should I upgrade? (Dell XPS 720 H2C)

Really, you can build a Duel core for around $300 and re purpose most of your gear (DVD, CAse, RAM, PSU <500w?).

A new Mobo would give you access to DDR3 RAM, USB and SATA 3.0 and more.

But I think the most important aspect is that you will be able to upgrade later to a quad core (I just built my Mom a duel core and we are rocking Portal 2 every Friday with the integrated Video Card.)

What do you think?
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Old 05-24-2011, 11:32 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: What should I upgrade? (Dell XPS 720 H2C)

7G's? Did they at least kiss you afterwards?

You will need a major overhaul (CPU, mobo, RAM, GPU... possible PSI). What's your budget?
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Old 05-24-2011, 05:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: What should I upgrade? (Dell XPS 720 H2C)

Quote:
Originally Posted by briangill View Post
Really, you can build a Duel core for around $300 and re purpose most of your gear (DVD, CAse, RAM, PSU <500w?).

A new Mobo would give you access to DDR3 RAM, USB and SATA 3.0 and more.

But I think the most important aspect is that you will be able to upgrade later to a quad core (I just built my Mom a duel core and we are rocking Portal 2 every Friday with the integrated Video Card.)

What do you think?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trotter View Post
7G's? Did they at least kiss you afterwards?

You will need a major overhaul (CPU, mobo, RAM, GPU... possible PSI). What's your budget?
Haha, trust me, I've played enough scenarios in my head in what I could have done with that 7Gs. That's a used car, or a new bike! But like I've said it's given me 5 good years. I don't even know what hardware is out for PC these days because I've never felt the need to look until now.

But yeah, I'm not trying to build a new computer, yet. So I don't really want to change out the motherboard. I just want to make sure this computer is completely maxed out to get the most out of what I paid for it. I don't have a budget (regrettably lol). I've been out of it for a while, so I don't know. What do you think?
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Old 05-24-2011, 05:27 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: What should I upgrade? (Dell XPS 720 H2C)

You are using a LGA775 mobo. You would have to drop back two generations to go with it, and odds are you would not be able to sue the last gen of those chips either.

If you want to get back into the game (so to speak) you need to be looking at something like a LGA1155 mobo and CPU (2500, 2500K, 2600, or 2600K), 4GB (min) of DDR3, and a new graphics card (you are three generations back on that, too). This is why I asked about your budget.

You could go with more, like a SSD for your OS, etc.

And you could do it all with a lot less than $7K.
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Old 05-24-2011, 05:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: What should I upgrade? (Dell XPS 720 H2C)

I agree that you should just build a new PC, but you could start with a nice video card. You could use the card with the PC you have now and the new one when it's built.

I had (2) 8800GTX cards in SLI a few years ago, they run about as fast as a single GTX 280. Using this as a guide, this ATI card would be a good improvement for just under $200.
Newegg.com - XFX HD-687A-ZDFC Radeon HD 6870 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.1 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card with Eyefinity

or this Nvidia card for a few dollars more.
Newegg.com - EVGA SuperClocked 01G-P3-1461-KR GeForce GTX 560 &#40;Fermi&#41; 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
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