Author Topic: My brother wants to upgrade his comp  (Read 2889 times)

Bobbias

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My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« on: November 18, 2010, 02:07:25 PM »
So, my brother's looking at upgrading the computer he's been using for the past couple years (which is technically still mine, because I bought and put together everything inside it...). Anyway, I've been out of the hardware loop for a long time, and I really have no idea what he should be getting, he's looking at upgrading the mobo and CPU and leaving the rest of the computer. As far as price range, less than $100 for each (so less than $200 combined). Basically, he wants to be able to play Starcraft 2.
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MortifiedocAlot

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Re: My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2010, 08:07:42 PM »
Seems like a pretty tall order, but I really don't thin SC2 is that resource heavy. He just needs enough vespen gas.


Bobbias

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Re: My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2010, 01:24:51 AM »
Well, I noticed that even the installer was running kinda poorly. The current system is running a kinda crappy mobo, an ATI Radeon X350, and an overclocked AMD Athlon 64 3800+ @ 2.46 GHz (instead of 2.0). IIRC it has 2 GB of ram, but not amazingly fast (although it did cost more than the mobo and the processor at the time).

All in all, it was a decent system for it's time, considering the budget I was on, but it's kinda getting old now. And I don't think that SC2 would run on that thing well even on lowest settings. My dual-core laptop which is a few years younger than that had a fair bit of trouble running SC2 on anything above low settings.
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Spectere

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Re: My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2010, 04:59:32 PM »
Yeah, he's going to need to put down more than $200 for SC2 to run reasonably well.

Here's what I put together:

Mobo (MSI G31TM-P21 - $47.99): http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130234
CPU (Intel Pentium Dual-Core E6600, 3.06GHz - $88.99): http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116347
Video Card (XFX ATI RADEON HD 4670, 1GB DDR3 - $74.99): http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150449

The subtotal for that is going to be around $211.97, shipping to Midland is around $14.59 via Purolator (or $17.79 via UPS), and $29.46 tax, for a total of $256.02.

If he doesn't already use DDR2 RAM, he's going to need memory:

2GB (1x2GB - $32.99): http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820141300
4GB (2x2GB - $63.99): http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820141337

So, there you go.  That should prove to be a pretty decent machine for the price.  He might be able to save $30-ish by bumping the processor down to a 2.7GHz model, but since dual cores are starting to get slowly and steadily phased out, I'd probably stick with the 3.06GHz one to compensate for that a bit.  I believe the 46XX RADEONs are still a bit better than the 55XX RADEONs, so if he wanted to jump up to the next generation, he'd have to get at least a 5600 series card to keep up.

Speaking of the video card, I did factor NVIDIA's offerings -- from the GTS 250 and on -- into the search, but ATI's cards were simply a better value.

I would most definitely replace the video card.  I run an X300 in my laptop and that's probably going to be half his problem right there.  I think WoW is the only somewhat modern game I have that'll still play on it (even Cataclysm works, surprisingly!), and only because Blizzard needs to cater to the Intel "Extreme" Graphics users, the likes of which my venerable X300 can still outperform in some workloads.
« Last Edit: November 19, 2010, 05:05:23 PM by Spectere »
¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Bobbias

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Re: My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2010, 07:06:07 PM »
Man, I really appreciate how much you put into this, lol.

That definitely looks like a great setup. I believe my brother was at one point looking at an AMD Phenom quad core, but I dunno how well those perform compared to that intel chip. Plus I believe that it was about $10 more, too (and that's for an OEM, rather than one with cooling).

Also, would it be worth it to spend the extra $1 and get the E6700 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116370
« Last Edit: November 19, 2010, 07:08:49 PM by Bobbias »
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Spectere

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Re: My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2010, 03:09:44 AM »
That definitely looks like a great setup. I believe my brother was at one point looking at an AMD Phenom quad core, but I dunno how well those perform compared to that intel chip.

It would probably outperform that chip in applications designed for triple and quad core processors. As for how it would fare against something designed for two, that's going to depend on the clock rate of the Phenom.

The Pentium Dual Core line is basically a low end Core 2. They are the Core 2 chips with a bit less cache and with features like virtualization disabled. Intel chips have been pretty cache-heavy as of late, so I don't think it would impact gaming performance too terribly.

Also, would it be worth it to spend the extra $1 and get the E6700 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819116370

Absolutely. Good catch, I didn't notice that when I was browsing through the CPUs earlier.
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Bobbias

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Re: My brother wants to upgrade his comp
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2010, 12:24:15 PM »
I saw it as one of those little pictures partway down the page, and noticed that it was nearly identical, except for the model being 1 higher, so I clicked, and saw it was only a buck more, and was like "wait wat?" lol.
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