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Topic # 25684 29-Aug-2008 02:41
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Having very little knowledge about PC's and what would work well, I had a friend make my current (gaming) PC with the money I had at the time. (estimating around 4-6months ago now? could be longer or shorter, I'm aloof and really don't recall when I got this made)

While I have a decent enough set up, I'd like to improve it to maximize my fps with game settings set @ max (for World of Warcraft) and not lag when in heavy populated zones/cities. Would also love to be able to run fraps without totally locking up as well.

At this stage just wondering what my options are; if I should get a new graphcis card, more RAM, cooling (have no clue about this!) etc

Current specs are:

  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • 1.87 gigahertz Intel Core2 Duo
  • 64 kilobyte primary memory cache
  • 4096 kilobyte secondary memory cache
  • Board: Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd. G33M-S2
  • Bus Clock: 266 megahertz
  • BIOS: Award Software International, Inc. F4 09/07/2007
  • 2046 Megabytes Installed Memory
  • Slot 'A0' has 1024 MB
  • Slot 'A1' is Empty
  • Slot 'A2' has 1024 MB
  • Slot 'A3' is Empty
  • 500.10 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
  • 336.90 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space
  • ASUS DRW-1814BL ATA Device [CD-ROM drive]
  • 3.5" format removeable media [Floppy drive]
  • Hitachi HDP725050GLA360 ATA Device [Hard drive] (500.11 GB) -- drive 0
  • NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS [Display adapter]
  • CMO CMC 22 W [Monitor] (22.0"vis, May 2007)

Not sure if all that info is relevant, guessing what info might be useful for advice on improving my setup (captured via a Belarc Computer Profile Summary)

Looking at spending ideally $500-$1000 max. Any advice would be appreciated. :)

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xpd

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  Reply # 160615 29-Aug-2008 08:31
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That machine should give full FPS in WoW no problem really..... maybe upgrade CPU to Core 2 Duo 8400 or similar and get rid of Vista :)
But thats me....
Im running WoW on a machine of a MUCH lower spec (try 4 years old) and still get reasonable FPS.




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  Reply # 160618 29-Aug-2008 08:52
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Your current CPU will be the bottleneck and also possibly the graphics card at higher resolutions.

I'd upgrade the CPU to a E8400 or E8500 ($300-$340) and throw in a Radeon HD 4870 (around $500).  Your motherboard is fine and you've got plenty of RAM - although I'd also be inclined to lose Vista as XP has slightly better gaming performance.




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  Reply # 160634 29-Aug-2008 09:32
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That spec is fine and way better than my 4 years old PC too... As for dissing Vista, it is perfectly fine with my Pentium D 2.8GHz with 4GB ram and GeForce 6600 256mb video card, playing 1440x900 with no AA of course, in windowed mode for WoW and get reasonable FPS. Hasn't bothered me much with teensy slight frame drop in very rare occasion.

If you want to upgrade, more importantly be your ram to 4GB first, dual-channel if possible to get best performance. perhaps the CPU to 8500 as said would be next thing... GF9600 for cheap gfx upgrade but 8800GT is good enough, otherwise, I'd keep it as it is (if that's me).

Use the WEI (Windows Experience Index) to determine which is the current bottom that is less than 4.0 mark




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xpd

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  Reply # 160646 29-Aug-2008 10:06
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chiefie: That spec is fine and way better than my 4 years old PC too... As for dissing Vista, it is perfectly fine with my Pentium D 2.8GHz with 4GB ram and GeForce 6600 256mb video card, playing 1440x900 with no AA of course, in windowed mode for WoW and get reasonable FPS. Hasn't bothered me much with teensy slight frame drop in very rare occasion.


At least your CPU is a D... mines a poxy old AMD64 3200+ 754 Tongue out
I need an upgrade.... but just got new tv so cpu parts are on hold for a while.......  anyone got a 939 motherboard spare ? Ive got a 939 4000+ CPU but no board Cry




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  Reply # 160647 29-Aug-2008 10:10
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Vista has been proven to consume more resources than XP and therefore most games tend to run slower under Vista.

I wouldn't think that adding another 2GB of RAM would make much of a difference as it's not the bottleneck in this case.  Also only 3GB would be accessible if running a 32-bit OS.  As I've suggested above CPU and Graphics card upgrade are the way to go.





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  Reply # 160655 29-Aug-2008 10:20
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How do you mean it is hogging up resources in Vista? A lot of report that said vista uses a lot more resources are showing the lack of understanding of "caching".

All those "free memory" that used to report in XP's resource manager, is sitting and doing nothing. Vista's memory management makes use of those free memory to cache things that you will do from day to day so it's ready to start application very quickly and it learns what you use most through the day and adjust in timely fashion.

I don't experience any lack of memory or hogged up at all, with 4GB it helps and if you supply more than 2GB ram it will be great, since ram is quite cheap too. Also, Vista will shut down resources that it doesn't require when in gaming mode (of course the game has to be vista game compatible)... However saying that, my experience with WoW on vista been good so don't diss it.

Many more people are warming to Vista as they take time to actually learn to use it and understand its most changes especially memory management, and the FUD of seeing "free memory" being low in Vista compare to XP is purely showing the lack of understanding the new memory management. Take time to study it.

And the sour experience from 2 years ago with manufacturers trying to make money by putting absolutely bare minimum of memory when delivery Vista seriously damage Vista's potential. how would you get good experience with 512mb on Vista, it was manufacturers' fault, not vista! Lately, you'd see all new pc comes with at least 1GB for basic, and 2GB for mid and 3GB+ for high end. And the vista experience is far better in the recent year compare to when it was first introduced.


As with any upgrade, RAM is the first anyone should look at if CPU and GFX is sufficient.




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  Reply # 160658 29-Aug-2008 10:24
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I switched from XP to Vista and my FPS rates did not drop in TF2 which is considerably more intensive than WoW, resources don't mean squat compared to FPS rates.

Your 8800GTS is a very good card and is better than a 9600, the 9600 would be a downgrade and spending $500 for an upgrade to the gfx is probably not justified compared to upgrading your CPU, which, IMO is the only botleneck.

 

You also didn't say what type of RAM you have, is it DDR2-667 or DDR2-800? Ideally you'll want DDR2-800!




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Geek


  Reply # 160670 29-Aug-2008 10:50
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Hey thanks for the feedback guys. :)

Playing in wotlk beta at the moment and my PC seems to have intermittent heart attacks when I turn shadow textures on to the maximum setting, so thought I'd look at upgrading.

Think I'll get a new CPU, new graphics card, and some more RAM. Should have me sorted for a few years, yeah?

*edit oops, opened the reply window and went afk for a bit before posting a response didn't quite see all the messages that had been posted afterwards. Might dwell on it for a bit before committing to what I'll upgrade then depending on the responses in this thread.

Not sure what sort of RAM I have.. will try and find out.



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  Reply # 160677 29-Aug-2008 11:10
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Hmm, not really sure how to find out what sort of RAM I have. :-x

xpd

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  Reply # 160679 29-Aug-2008 11:15
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Look online for CPUZ - that gives you a break down of your CPU and RAM specs.





XPD / Gavin / DemiseNZ

 

For Free Games, Geekiness and Reviews, visit :

 

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Geek


  Reply # 160686 29-Aug-2008 11:32
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Thanks xpd. Got the following results:

DDR2
Dual
Symmetric
DRAM frequency 319.2 MHz
FSB:DRAM 5:6
CL 5 clocks
tRCD 4 clocks
tRP 4 clocks
tRAS 15 clocks
CR 2T

From the memory tab of CPUZ

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  Reply # 160689 29-Aug-2008 11:40
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chiefie: Many more people are warming to Vista as they take time to actually learn to use it and understand its most changes especially memory management, and the FUD of seeing "free memory" being low in Vista compare to XP is purely showing the lack of understanding the new memory management. Take time to study it.


WTF?  Are you serious?  Joe Average user shouldn't have to learn about memory management just to get more performance out of Vista! 




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  Reply # 160696 29-Aug-2008 12:12
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After reading a couple of other threads in this section of the forum, do I need a new PSU?

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  Reply # 160700 29-Aug-2008 12:32
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redjet:
chiefie: Many more people are warming to Vista as they take time to actually learn to use it and understand its most changes especially memory management, and the FUD of seeing "free memory" being low in Vista compare to XP is purely showing the lack of understanding the new memory management. Take time to study it.


WTF?? Are you serious?? Joe Average user shouldn't have to learn about memory management just to get more performance out of Vista!?


But you are spreading the FUD without knowing the new memory management taken placed in Vista. Joe Average doesn't need to know that, true, but all they need to be told and sold is enough ram. And in the past manufacturers aren't doing anyone any favour with limited 512mb of ram, except to their pockets.

It'd be appreciated that you (yes you) understand and study that Vista's memory management is much more intelligent and making use of the free memory to cache things that you routinely be doing and have small chunk loaded in the memory in anticipate for you to use whatever applications/programs you normally be. When it senses that you're not doing the usual and there's a call for more memory, Vista will terminate the unneeded stuff.

SO the saying of it is such a resource hog, based purely by judging Vista's memory manager's "Physical Memory" used in Task Manager, that is a wrong thinking. Which is my point that I made above.

Hope you understand this.




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  Reply # 160702 29-Aug-2008 12:37
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OK, I'm with you now Chiefie.




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