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Old August 25, 2008, 02:20 PM
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Default Not a new build, but new upgrades

hey guys i am at the point where i want a better GPU (a 3850 series or better) but i think i may be kicking a dead horse (my old rig)...

incase you forgot, my setup is as follows:

gigabyte GA-k8ns 939 mobo
amd a64 3000+
2x1gb ocz platinum pc3200 ddr400
ati 9600 xt 256mb AGP
antec sonata case w/ 380w truepower psu (24a 12v)
wd 160gb pata
wd 500gb sata
samsung 205 lcd @ 1680x1050

since the AGP cards are so expensive, i was thinking of upgrading my gpu to a pci-e bus. I have been eyeballing a couple motherboards, and i am leaning toward an Asus A8R32 MVP Deluxe for 80 bucks. I was thinking of buying that board and transferring all my stuff over to it (except the AGP card) and then buying a nice PCI-e HD GPU to go with it (i want to watch HD movies on the system too) I will buy the best pci-e ATI GPU i can afford now and then get another one for crossfire down the road. Do you guys think this is a good idea considering i don't want to buy a whole new computer for the next 2-3 years? I hope that setup will be able to stand up to some really detailed DX10 games like TF2, COD4, Crysis, Battlefield series etc. before the s939 cpu's dissappear totally ( i will save for an opteron 170). Then i will buy one of the new AMD AM3 with DDR3 mainboards and sell this old rig to a friend or something.

Are there any weak points to this system? I have a feeling i may need to upgrade the psu for the new pci-e card, and definitely when i get a second GPU. Can i get away with that psu on one of these newer pci-e gpu's?

I know the cpu isn't the greatest, but i don't do much other than play games, music, movies/vid, surf the internet and edit photos. I think it will be ok with one good GPU for team fortress 2 and Halflife 2 episode 1 and 2. I am not scared to try overclocking my components either. I hear you can get the older 3000+'s moving pretty good.

I was just thinking this motherboard upgrade to the ASUS makes the biggest impact for the least amount of money. If all i have to initially buy is the motherboard and pci-e GPU, i am a happy man. I don't want to buy an new processor, ram, case, blah blah blah only to see it on the same boat as this system next year. the new one will look something like this:

asus a8r32
amd 3000+ overclocked or opteron 165/170 if i am lucky
2x1gb ocz pc 3200 ram
3870/4850/4870(wishful thinking) pci-e GPU (upgrade to 2 of them in x-fire in maybe a year or so)

i think the biggest advantage is i can take my GPU's to my next system, and i don't end up spending a lot of money to have a pretty nice gaming machine with lots of potential to be faster imo I should have bought this ASUS mobo 3 years ago

i figure the 939 rig will still be good and i can take my 2 3870 cards, psu, and HD's and install them in my next computer (am3 or the new intel socket). I could even keep my current case and sell the 939 stuff when it is time. I will probably still fetch good money for those parts a couple years down the road.


btw, i might as well put out a feeler for the following parts:

Sapphire ATI 9600 XT 256mb AGP
Gigabyte K8NSC-939
2x512mb PC3200 DDR400 Kingston Value Ram (KVR400X64C3A/512)
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Old August 25, 2008, 02:46 PM
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Opteron 170 and Up are still very expensive because they are rare. I would suggest that you look into an ATI 4850 video card for now. I wouldn't upgrade the motherboard to another socket 939 as most company don't make them anymore. If I were you, I would hold off on upgrading and wait for the prices to come down as new products from AMD and Intel are coming out very soon.

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Old August 25, 2008, 10:20 PM
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If you don't want to wait, you can get an excellent gaming system for around $700. It's better than updating an old AGP system.
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Old August 25, 2008, 10:37 PM
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He didn't want to sink too much money, and i agree on the waiting, prices drop ALL the time so might as well.
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Old August 26, 2008, 04:07 AM
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An A64 3000+ will hold back an HD38x0 a lot. With an Opty 170 and an HD4850, you will still be CPU bound, and even a little CPU-bound with an HD38x0. It's hard to believe, but todays great video-cards need a good CPU to keep up with them.
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Old August 26, 2008, 05:19 AM
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On top of that your PSU shouldn't be enough for one 38x0, let alone a 48x0 or a xfire combo. I'd wait a bit cuz by the looks of it, it would b wise to actually do a new build.
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Old August 26, 2008, 06:22 AM
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Personally, I think you can still get decent performace out of a single PCI-X mobe, amd/intel, just make sure you got 4 GB of ram, DX10 card with MIN 512 MB or vid mem, drive space, really hard to fill up 160+ GB with PRON, hacks and warez.. Unless, you wanna bunch of nerdy dorks salvvating over meaningless words and numbers cause you bought like a POWER 6 and run Oracle!!!!!
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Old August 26, 2008, 01:46 PM
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Thanks for the replys guys.

In response to waiting for prices to drop: I have been putting this upgrade off for about 8 months now. I dumped a pile of money into my truck instead in the spring because i use it more. Now that I'm pretty much finished with it, i can spend a little money on the computer. I am trying not to spend more than $200 on the mobo and GPU. I am sure the 48 series cards are awesome, but they are also way out of my price range. I do not want to have to spend an extra 170 on a cpu to keep up with one of those cards let alone 2. Like i said, all i want to do is have a little better experience on HL2 and maybe play some of the new DX10 games. If a 3870 and slightly overclocked 3000+ gets the job done, great. If i find i need something a little better in the CPU department, I will go find a dual core 939 chip for about $70-100. It's a matter of me spending a couple hundred bucks and not going out and buying an entire new system for 2-4 times the money. I will do that in a few years when the ddr3 mobos with new cpu sockets get cheaper. Hopefully the PCI-E cards i buy will still be compatible with the new socket mobos. I'm sure my Half Life 2 game is going to play way better considering i'll be upgrading from a 9600XT 256mb.

I will upgrade the PSU and CPU when I decide to buy a second GPU for xfire. I think the PSU can handle one 3850 or 3870, but i know it won't work with 2.

Tazer, i though about getting a single pci-e mobo for socket 939. can you recommend one to me? if they considerably cheaper, i will put some money into a better gpu and cpu.
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Old August 26, 2008, 02:21 PM
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Do you guys think it would be wiser to just ditch the DDR400 and S939 all together and get a new Gigabyte GA790X motherboard?
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Old August 26, 2008, 02:31 PM
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Yes! good idea
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