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Upgrading My Processor/Motherboard

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by LeeBerlik, Mar 2, 2002.

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  1. LeeBerlik

    LeeBerlik Thread Starter

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    I am determined to run Medal of Honor: Allied Assault on my computer. My old video card did not have OpenGL capability, so I bought and installed an ATI Radeon 8500. Now I get video, but the game is unplayably slow. The reason: 300 MHz is all I've got.
    I'd like to increase my speed to at least 700 MHz but I don't know squat about how to do that. Do I need a new motherboard? CPU? Are those two different things? Anyway, here's what I have:

    AMD K6-2 MMX 3DNow!
    300 MHz (used to be fast)
    128 MB RAM

    Thanks for any suggestions.
     
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  3. dhath621

    dhath621

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    The highest AMD K6-2 I have been able to find is a 500 Mghz. So if you want ot upgrade to 700 Mghz you need a new mother board also.
     
  4. max 8

    max 8

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    I would suggest you upgrade your cpu to 550mhz (that's the max) rather than buy a new motherboard and cpu cuz that would just start a snowball effect.
    You can get a AMD K62 533mhz for as low $28 (check on pricewatch.com).
    Once you replace your mobo/cpu, then other components you have now most probably won't be compatible with them.
     
  5. sykootic

    sykootic

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    installing a new chip & board can be a tedious task for a beginner.
    Since you have the major workings (hard drive, video card, cd-rom, etc) I recommend a "barebones" set up. These are premade computers just lacking the drives and cards. Most barebones come pretested and burned in and are becoming cheap. www.pricewatch.com is a good place to find such items.
    Good Luck
     
  6. compilerxp

    compilerxp

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    The K6 line doesn't play ANY modern games (or those the past 2 years) well... especially the ones of 2002.

    You're really looking at a system upgrade.

    YOu can keep the following and build (if you know how or buy a baer bones from a vender) - The HD (But a new 40GB 7200 RPM drive can be had for $100, mine pushes at 25mb per sec, VS 4~8mb per sec from 2-3 years ago), Keep the floppy drive, CD-ROM. Any PCI cards you may have will work (Modem, Sound, network). Unless your Keyboard and mouse are PS/2, you may have to replace these or buy adapters which COST almost as much as new keybords and mice. everything else... nope. It maybe better to SELL your system to a NON gamer.


    YOu can get an AMD XP 1600 system with 256mb of DDR, 40gb HD, case and all for about $600~700, then drop in your Radeon video card (it is AGP, right?). You'll save about $75 by getting a 1.2Ghz AMD Duron chip.

    Then your games will run sweet.

    Go to www.madonion.com, download 3DMark2001 (and or 2000).
    It'll tell you your 3D graphics performance.

    Here is an example (Pentium3/GF2-ti200 - which is about the same as your Radeon)

    3dMark2001 : 5000
    3dMark2000 : 6887

    Besides which, 3dMark2001 will show you some COOL things that your new card can do. On my system I score good for what it is. An AMD XP system will get about 8000 for 3DMark2001.

    Good luck...

    Sorry that a simple CHIP upgrade will NOT cut it. The extra 200Mhz is not enough.
     
  7. jasonrosegiese

    jasonrosegiese

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    I'm no computer whiz,, but in my experience, its your ram that trips you up in games more often than your cpu. I would check and see if your board could handle 256megs of ram.
    My wifes PC was doin the same thing on unreal tournament. Its got a [email protected] I upgraded it to 256 megs of pc100 sdram, and bingo. It plays fine now. It also does fine in new driving games. However, going with a barebones system is a good idea too. That way youll be able to play the newest games, and future games.
     
  8. LeeBerlik

    LeeBerlik Thread Starter

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    Thanks for all the helpful responses. After I posted my original inquiry, I did some online research and learned that new purchases of CPU-motherboard combos are common. I read somewhere that it's quite easy to upgrade your "system" simply by purchasing the combo. The following sounded nice:

    AMD Athlon ("Thunderbird") 1.4 GHz 266 FSB
    ECS "Socket A" motherboard
    generic fan and heatsink

    Can't I just buy this package (approx. $150) and take it to Best Buy or some computer shop to install? I was thinking I would do that and at the same time ask the shop to double my RAM. Would this not be practical? Would there really be compatability issues to worry about? Other problems with this? Does it really make more sense to buy a whole new computer?!

    I'm not sure I understand the difference between this approach and purchasing a "bare bones" system. If I keep my drives and cards, is the only difference that a barebones system comes with a new case?

    Finally, one thing I couldn't figure out from my research is whether my current system is "form factor ATX." As far as I can tell, ATX refers to the size of the computer case, and Socket A motherboards require ATX. Do I need to worry about this, too, or will Best Buy simply move my system into a new case if I don't already have ATX?

    Man, all this work just to play a silly game!

    P.S. Hey "Compilerxp"--thanks for the very helpful response. But who is going to buy my computer if I take out the hard drive, floppy drive, CD-ROM, and all AGP and PCI cards? Sounds like a tough sell!
     
  9. sykootic

    sykootic

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    I would not trust nor afford to pay best buy to assemble my computer. The hardest part of a new chip/board upgrade is installing the cpu onto the board and making sure the jumpers are set right. I would leave this up to a professional. A barebones system is already installed and configured and pretested. You stated that you already have the ability to upgrade video cards. Then you can easily change all your cards into a barebones system. Most barebones systems come with a new case and powersupply as well. Pricewatch has a barebones kit with a XP 1800, generic motherboard, and installed into a case for less than $200. The chip/combo is only $20 cheaper but you dont get a new case or powersupply. I personally would go the extra $40-50 and get a brand name motherboard. Or you can send me your money and your old computer and I will build it for you.
     
  10. jasonrosegiese

    jasonrosegiese

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    The idea of selling your old system is to sell it complete to someone that doesnt require cutting edge technology, then add some money to that and buy a complete system that will take care of your games. If you go that way, put your old video card back in first. Keep the new ati and use it in the new system, or sell it seperatley. the easiest way to tell if you have an AT or ATX case is the keyboard plug. the old AT style has the bigger plug, new ATX style use a PS/2 keyboard plug. The power supply plug is diff also. Your local computer store should be able to show you the diff.
    If you have the money, build your own, keep the old one going so you can post questions here. once your new one is up and going, then sell the old one.
     
  11. LeeBerlik

    LeeBerlik Thread Starter

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    Seriously, I didn't know there was a market for used computers. Do you have any tips for selling one? Nobody would want my half-full hard drive in its existing state, so I assume there's a way I can wipe it clean before selling it. I would also want to make sure there are no traces of my online passwords and social security number, etc. How do I do this?

    And where are the buyers for used equipment? Should I place an ad in my local paper? Take it to a shop? Advertise it online somewhere?

    Going back to the "barebones" idea, which is starting to sound appealing, I understand I can plug my existing cards into the new system, but what about stuff like my hard drive and floppy drive? I don't even know what my hard drive looks like. Is it also a fairly simply plug-and-use type device, or would I have to take everything to a professional to move my existing items into a new barebones setup? What type of store does this, if not BestBuy?

    Thanks again for all these responses. This is great.
     
  12. LeeBerlik

    LeeBerlik Thread Starter

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    For the benefit of anyone who is just reading along, I can now answer two of my own questions:

    1. There are utilities (such as Norton SystemWorks, I believe it was called) that have a "wipe" feature for clearing personal info off of hard disks before selling them.

    2. A good place to sell a used computer appears to be www.half.com. Or ebay.
     
  13. sykootic

    sykootic

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    seling your old computer equipment makes upgrading even cheaper. But you should use as much of your older stuff and you can. Most hard drives can be carried with you into your upgrade. Just be sure that you jumper them correctly. You should only sell what you dont have a need for. You can still just sell your old motherboard, cpu, and case with nothing in it. One good idea would be to get the parts you need first. Then try to have one computer up and going, at least be able to surf the net, while you build the second. This will allow you to ask for help and get drivers. Be sure to read articles pertaining to the parts that you want to buy. Look up info on the net, there are lots of articles on how to build computers. Maybe you can bookmark them or print them up to aide you in your upgrade. GL
     
  14. jasonrosegiese

    jasonrosegiese

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    E-bay is a great place to sell old parts. Your hard drive, cd-rom, and floppy are the easiest things to change over. And your already on the best tech support forum on the web. Since Ive joined, I never had a question go unanswered. The first time I did anything with a computer was less than a year ago, but with the help of this forum, I've built several from the ground up... Good luck on whatever you choose to do.
     
  15. compilerxp

    compilerxp

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    Look at youre keyboard and mouse connectors.

    AT keyboards have a big end and your mouse will look very different. And ATX style system will have both the mouse and keyboard connectos side by side and look exactly alike.

    An ATX motherboard has a SOFT powerup & Shutdown. ie: With AT, your Windows cannot TURN OFF your computer.

    ATX boards come with 2 USB ports and have the serial & printer connectos on the board itself.

    Because of the age of your system, even if it DOES have ATX, it may have a 200watt PS, typical of P1 & K6 systems.

    1 - Get an XP CPU for speed. The TBird is good if its under $100.
    2 - ECS brand is not known for their quality - but they are CHEAP and the SIS chipset is good. I'd say spend the extra $25~50 for a better board that may last you longer, more performance and less errors.
    3 - ATX case & Powersupply -250~300 watt costs $70~95.

    Where do you live? Look for a local computer trade magazine. It should cost about $50 for someone to build it for you.

    Good luck.

    I wouldn't put any more money into your old system. The other posters are right about selling your old system to buy more parts.

    I do this all the time... sell my old computer (keep the top-end parts) spend $100~200 for new parts. done.


    Good luck.
     
  16. jasonrosegiese

    jasonrosegiese

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    Just a quick piece of advice, (And I'm sure theres millions of people out there who would disagree with me) run a pentium cpu. Truth is, according to all the benchmarks ive ran and real world apps, it takes an AMD 450-500 just to keep up with my wifes [email protected] If its cost your worried about, get an Intel Celeron, they are much cheaper than the Pentiums. As I posted earlier, my wifes 266 has played all the games Ive ever installed on it including Unreal tournament, and 4X4 evolution.

    Changing to a [email protected] would seem like a super computer next to that AMD:D :D
     
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