help with deciding on new hardware

i will be getting some $$ in a few months and am going to replace some of the stuff in my computer. i was looking into a new motherboard, some more RAM, (maybe) a new processor, and if i can aford it: either a new HD or an external one.
right now i have 512 mb RAM, a 20G HD, (i think) pentium 3 2ghz processor .ill have to check my other specs when i get home (im at school right now :smiley: )

i was lookig around newegg at their stuff, and they have some pretty good prices on motherboards, memory, and processors. now, i have NO clue how to install all this and put it together, so any tips or instructions on how to do this without screwing up my computer and making it all work right would be much appreciated.

my limit is 500$ (for all of this stuff) , any suggestions of motherboards? my current one has something like 3 PCI bus’ and only 2 RAM slots (i would love more).

Could you manage with a mobo like this?
It’s around 60-65 $ and it got graphics integrated too.

AMD Sempron (754): ~ 100 $

1 GB RAM: ~ 100 $.

250 GB hard drive: ~ 100 $.

So with these components it would be around 370 $.

Of course you could get some other mobo and buy graphics card for it. That would cost at least 100 $ but you would have more choices from which to pick. You also might want to consider upgrading your power supply/chassis or you could even get a barebone though that might be a bit too costly.

Integrated graphics… uggghhh…

With that machine and that budget, I’d look for upgrades. Put an extra 512mb RAM in, upgrade your graphics card, add another HDD.

With that budget you won’t be looking at much of a performance improvement on just upgrading, and it will cost you less.

My advice anyway.


Well some things that are how are:

  • 1 or more gig RAM, try looking at DDR 400 or dual or something. Speed in GHZ, ok it’s important, but Ram does really do a good job. I know someone who has a 800 mhz pentium with 3 gig ram that acts like a pentium 4 1,5 ghz. It’s incredible fast.
  • 20GB HD, well today 20gb is really low, try finding one with 100 oe 200 gb, those are around 100 dollar or even less. Also don’t look on only the size, but more important the speed they can handle, thise is imporatant for having big files on your HD, slow HD’s take ages to caculate the size of those files, fasther HD’s can simply handle more and give you acces to big files in miliseconds. I have a slow one which causes with 6x 500mb big files in a dir, a huge system freeze. :frowning:
  • videocard nvidia 6600 or 6800 GT or MX are quite good, not know how much but ok. A geforce 4 does also a good job, but in today’s games those are already outdated.

Those 3 thigns above can already speed up your pc a lot, and are the most know things that are used for upgrading pc’s Ram, HD speed, videocards and you’re done in most cases.

With 500 dollar you won’t make it if you want a good videocard and dual ddr ram. But ok Good ram and a good HD can stay lower then 500 dollar. :slight_smile: I did a big system upgrade for 250 euro for better Ram, new mobo + processor. I only need a better GFX card (6800 in mind) and a better faster HD :slight_smile: then I can do another 2 years with it. It’s already 4 years old and still does the job. A geforce 2 TI that handles doom3 and COD2. Well on low quality, but I was able to play them, sure I want another one. :stuck_out_tongue:

ok, im at home now, and here are my specs:
-NVidia geforce fx 5200
-512 MB RAM
-pentium 4 2.2 GHz
for the life of me i cant figure out what type of motherboard this thing has in it. it says “Model Name: Bluford” , and next to it there is a sticker with some type of serial number on it that reads “CN-07W080-70821-34A-EOQD”, the PC is a DELL dimension 2350. i would like to find out the maximum ammount of RAM i can fit on it before i go spend the $$ on 2 gigs of it (or however much i get).

if anybody can help me identify what brand it is and its info, i would be very appreciative.

and, i dont want to sound like a noob, but , what exactly is “MOBO”? i always assumed it meant PCI slots ect…

MOBO = MOtherBOard
is there any other numbers or lettes on it?
or do you have a picture

there is a logo that has a backwards “R” connected to a “U”, under that “E139765”. above that is a sticker with 2 barcodes on it. the upper barcode has the “CN-07W080-70821-34A-EOQD” written under it, and under that is the smaller barcode with “REV AOO” written under it. i found a website with a diagram of ( ) but no real info on the motherboard itself.

Commodity PCs and their motherboard/processors usually can’t be upgraded. They use various proprietary connections.

Your video card, sound or other PCI/AGP cards should be able to be upgraded, RAM too.

i had some help in #Blenderchat and we determined that i can fit 2GIG in this machine. i also have room for a new HD. and i need a new graphics card (PCI) and a DVD/CD-RW drive. i figure ill have enough $$ to cover all this with not much to spare.
2 1-GB RAM - $221 (
250 GB HD - $103 (
graphics card- $165 ( )
total: $489

perfect! (but what about shipping? :o )
so, what do you think?

You should seriously reconsider buying that graphics card…you’d get worse game performance from that one than the 5200 you already have. (if you’re into gaming at all, that is.) You’ll be far better off to get one of the better geforce 5x00 series…they still come out in PCI versions…i think.

ok, ill see about those. What exactly should i look for in a card? i need one both functional for blendering and gaming. im pretty much going off of these 3 pages here:
they are all PCI cards. i really need some help in this area :wink: .

Just get a 6800 for your graphics card. You can flash it to a Quadro if you really need that (you probably won’t). You can google the topic. Much success has come out of it, plus you will get a much better card.

if you plan to install your own stuff, i advise you not to…

if you hire someone to do it (might cost you $60) then they take the liability on the job, if they are a computer store that is, otherwise you could be left with no computer.

i basicly have no computer now after installing a simple PCI card :frowning:


Just get a 6800 for your graphics card. You can flash it to a Quadro if you really need that (you probably won’t). You can google the topic. Much success has come out of it, plus you will get a much better card.

i cant find it in PCI , its all PCI-e .maybe i should just get a new motherboard. but, how would i know if it fits in my current case?

Maybe your card is in an AGP slot (seems likely to me given the spec)


should make it possible to get something decent…


Maybe your card is in an AGP slot (seems likely to me given the spec)

no, its in a PCI slot. this mobo has 3 of them. looks like i need a micro ATX mobo to fit in this case i have. can they handle fairly highend graphics cards, i heard somewhere that they cant :-? . and also, is there somewhere i can go to ask all these questions i have, i dont want to bug you guys for the next week asking what will work on what :wink: .