Need purchasing advice.

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Bladin

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my current computer is
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/genericDocument?cc=us&docname=c00059797&lc=en

And i need advice of a video card and some ram to buy. Would like to get a video card that could run hl2, eq2, and games like them well. Maybe not at the highest setting but high enough that i dont have to sacrifice much/any performance compared to quality. But i don't really want to spend over $200.

also im not 100% sure what ram to buy for my comp, wouldlike to get another 512, maybe a 1024, but my limit would be at around $70

would like to order from a "real" website such as newegg or tigerdirect, and NOT from ebay or anything like that.

I know its quite picky but bleh.. I've never really been "great" at telling the difference between quaity of parts. I know how to install the crap tho, took a course on computer hardware, but unfortunately the teacher focus'd on installing the actual parts and troubleshooting that, without really teaching us about alot of the quality differences between parts of the same type.
 
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Hi there. Looking at the link you posted you seem to have quite a capable gaming machine there. In your budget i would go with an Nvidia 6600gt. For the ram(according to the specs on the link) you will want PC3200. Now here's the kicker with your ram. I find it best to use matched sticks of ram with any machine to minimize potential stability issues. You can download CPU-Z. Once you've downloaded it click on the 'SPD' tab. This MIGHT tell you who manufactures the ram and will definitely tell you the rated timings of the ram. This will give you an idea of what to look for in a match for what you already have.

Kingston, Corsair, Crucial, Mushkin, Patriot, G-skill, OCZ are ALL quality ram manufacturers. The lower the rated timings the better the quality.
 

Bladin

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Joined
Jan 12, 2006
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I was looking around and this card seemed to be good, any opinions on it?

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1184256&Tab=2&NoMapp=0

also my computer uses DDR-SDRAM and tigerdirect only lists SDRAM, and DDR ram, so would i be looking for ddr or sdram? if ddr, with my current ram 512 pc3200 200 mhz would i get more performance from

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1649638

or this

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=1071020

Would i encounter problems if i were to use the 512 and the 1024, different brands and speeds(i don't see any infineon ram anywhere and thats what i got now).

If so would i get better performance just replacing the 512 with the 1024 and then getting another stick of that someday, or the 2 sticks of 512 and then later upgrading both of em?
 
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That's the video card i was talking about. You should be quite happy with it in comparison to what you have now.

As for the memory. Like i said before. If you haven't been able to find an exact match then try and match up the timing spec using CPU-Z. Otherwise you might just ditch what you have now and buy a 'dual channel' pack or a 'kit'. These are modules from the same batch and are typically pre tested to work well together.

As for your question about stability. It is very well possible that you can run un-matched sticks and have no problems. I'm just saying that in order to minimize potential problems with stability it's best to go with matched ram. If the seller you are purchasing the ram from has a liberal return policy with no restocking fee then all you should be out is the shipping cost if it doesn't work.
 
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You would need to open up your case. The PSU should have a sticker on it of some sort indicating the wattage. Most PSU's have plenty of extra power connectors available. These are the four pin connectors that you see hooked up to your optical drives.

Just to point out. Even if your PSU is not up to the wattage spec it still might work if it is a good quality PSU. I ran the 9700pro i'm using now, which requires extra power, in a system that only had a 250 watt PSU.
 
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