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A few years back I bought a GeForce 8800 GTS 512 and a 550W power supply to match. However, I've noticed that my processor, which is a standard AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+, has been limiting the perfomance of my system.
I was thinking of buying something like AMD Phenom II X4 955, the problem is that according to my information my motherboard (Asus M2N68-LA Narra) can't handle the upgrade. So, I was hoping if someone could maybe give me a few pointers on what kind of a motherboard I should get, I can handle most of the upgrade stuff on my own, but I'm not too familiar with motherboards. Currently I'm thinking of something like ASUS M4A78LT-M LE but then again, I know little when it comes to this.
If I remember correctly, it must have been around 3 years ago when I got it, so I'd figure it isn't much older than that.
Stuff changes so rapidly that your are in danger of chasing your own tail in trying to match components. I have built many PC's and have foundit has been very beneficial to purchase a 'Bareboness set up as a case/motherboard processor PSU, ready for drives or as a Motherboard/processor/memory as an assemnbled and tested item to insert into your cases and attach your drives. A caveat- stuff is changing[again] IDE is going, SATA is the new kid on the block for drives althugh adaptors are out there too.
Being an amateur when it comes to hardware, I just realized that if I were to get the ASUS M4A78LT-M LE motherboard I could get an AMD Phenom II X6 1055T instead of the X4 955 (since the motherboard apparently supports it and since it's only slightly more expensive). I wonder if someone could enlighten me about the pros and cons (if there are any) between quad and six-core processors. Also, I wonder if there would be any real benefit from choosing the more powerful processors, since the X4 already seems to pack quite a punch and I find it highly unlikely that I'd be upgrading anything else for a long time.
I can see the logic of SparkyJack's argument. Equally if there is a faster cpu that will work in your current mobo that (and some more ram if there's room) may be a way to go
But once you start on big money I think things point much more to starting again, especially if your current operating system is not Windows 7, and is oem as well which may cause problems. It's so easy to spend the thick end of 50% of the cost of a new job for a rather less satisfying upgrade of something that is already, in the computer world, well into middle age
Things do move very quick, and while it is possible to upgrade your existing system I do feel you may hanker for more progress soon, when looking at the current processors as they fall in price
I was originally thinking of simply getting a new processor, but then I noticed how antiquated my motherboard was, and it seems that there are no processors that it can handle that would be even close to worth buying.
This old rig has been a constant source of problems, although it's been rather educating. Last year I got my hard drive busted due to some Windows problems, and used the opportunity to switch to Windows 7 Ultimate (and the vast majority of my problems vanished). That being said, the processor and motherboard along with what little memory this thing's got are pretty much the last things remaining of the original system.
If you have a new psu, hard drive and a copy of windows7 capable of moving to a new mobo and processor then a mobo and processor bundle from Novatech or similar would be a way forward
At such a stage I think a system based around Intel i3/i5/i7 would be good and likely to remain so for some time. If your copy of W7 is 32 bit you'll know to buy no more than 4Gb ram
Whatever you buy try to get it all from one supplier to avoid problems if an item is faulty
Not up with graphics cards at the moment I'm afraid, so can't say if the existing will suit
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