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How important is the motherboard in a CPU upgrade?


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#1
Esroc

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I have an old eMachines PC that through massive MacGuyvering and mild upgrades here and there has managed to last me a few years. But now I want to be able to play some of the new(er) games that are out now (along the lines of, say, Half Life 2. I'm not looking to load up Crysis or anything like that) but I'm strapped for cash so buying a new system or building a brand new one is out of the question. The main problem with my machine is the Processor, it's an crappy Celeron D that barely runs at all anymore, much less runs anything mildly resembling a video game.

So my first step that I would like to take is to upgrade my processor and then work on from there, with an ultimate goal of having eventually replaced everything in the system so it's no longer the same machine anymore. My question is, can my motherboard handle something along the lines of an Intel Core 2 Duo, or even Core 2 Quad processor? Or am I going to have to get a new motherboard as well? (Which I would like to avoid if possible)

My Mobo is an "Intel® (Grant County) RC410 motherboard" with a LGA775 socket type (which I've seen that is a common CPU socket type) with "800/533 MHz front side bus support" (which I assume means it can only handle processors with a max of that FSB?)

So, is it possible to force-feed my mobo a Core 2 duo? Or am I doomed to wait until I get my hands on a grand or two to blow?
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#2
dhitchner

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Just for a quick reply,... if I were you, I'd try to find the manual for the mobo, or contact customer support. Chance of it being able to be upgraded that much are looking pretty slim though. I've worked on some eMachines in my days and found they use very cheap materials.
And just to answer your main question, a motherboard is extremely important when it comes to any kind of CPU or video card upgrade. One of the moderators in here can probably explain to you more on why it is, but I know that the FSB speed has a great deal to do with it along with chipsets and other things. Well good luck.

p.s. Do you have any kind of budget in mind? If you look at some of my recent posts, you might be able to get an idea of what it will cost to build a descent gaming machine. If you keep your eye out for good deals, they come along fairly often.
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#3
BravoZulu

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It's likely that your board will only take up to maybe an Intel P4D 2.8 to 3.2 (maybe) -- not a core 2 duo or quad core. Your best bet is probably to find a bare bones from TigerDirect or something, maybe an AMD X2 with an 8600GT and a nice case with an included PSU (make sure it's decent), then and just transfer your optical and HDD to the new system. You'll need a new operating system though.
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#4
Neil Jones

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Realistically eMachines motherboards are cheap pieces of garbage that I would rather bin a fully-working one than use it somewhere else, the performance on them is quite simply dreadful especially on the Celeron processors that they use.
They may well take a P4 but realistically you'll get better performance by replacing the board, memory and processor (and PSU - don't use the eMachines Bestec ones)
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#5
BravoZulu

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^Correct. Most older emachines used tigem (made in Korea) motherboards with Intel systems, however there were some fairtly good AMD systems that eMachines previously had going back to the socket A days they actually used a good Nforce2 FIC mATX variant, and would flash to an 8DRA+ bios, and later in the A64 754 series they used *retail* ATI chipset S754-939 MSI motherboards. The same can't be said for the Intel series though. So yes, in this case I would recommend a carefully picked out budget Bare bones setup with a new MS OS.
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#6
cvswebdesign

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http://www.tigerdire...e...&CatId=1599 $259.99 (Motherboard, Processor and 2GB of RAM)

On the cheaper side....but will still handle your games you'd like to play -
http://www.tigerdire...e...&CatId=1599 $169.99 (Motherboard and Processor) (You would need RAM...supports 2 GB)

http://www.tigerdire...p?EdpNo=3048552 $99.99 (Video Card 8600 GT 256MB DDR3 - VERY GOOD CARD FOR THE PRICE)

Now all you need is a PSU and a CASE.
http://www.tigerdire...e...&CatId=1849 $49.99 (Case with 450 Watt PSU)

So basically for just over $400 bucks you can throw your optical drive and your hard drive into the new system. If you already have Windows XP on your hard drive and have a valid CD Key you can contact Microsoft when you finish your build and let them know you purchased a new motherboard and would like to move your hard drive and copy of Windows XP to the new system. They will give you the authorization key over the phone.

If you need any help or would like any further suggestions please let me know.

Carl

P.S. The motherboard only plays a huge role in your build if you plan on overclocking the living daylights out of your CPU. For an example, the EVGA 680i LTI motheboard with the Intel Core 2 Duo Q6600 can overclock to a very cool 3.2GHz. With the 780i LTI mobo the Q6600 can overclock easily to 3.6GHz. I've done both...of course...the RAM and your cooling system plays a huge role in all of this. If you're just looking to play some simple games....you don't need to get all crazy in the overclockers world.
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#7
Ryan_88

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motherboards are very important in terms of any upgrade!

as your computer will only run as fast as its slowest component! (be it the RAM, CPU, Graphics card or MOBO)
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