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Mobo upgrade advice please


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#31
Eden1

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Hi Makai,

Thanks very much for that , i read your advice with great interest .
I still have my first PC (full size case ) that basically bit the dust a few years ago - i have thought about stripping out all the old parts out and rebuilding afresh ( not limited to micro ATX) - it's hard to justify it at the moment though but definitely something i want to try .
To be honest , as a newbie to building i wonder whether it might be sensible to see if i can fix up this system before attempting a complete new build - prove to myself i can walk before i try running so to speak !
This leaves me with this faulty emachine which i thought worth trying to repair as
a useful backup to my main PC .- virtually no gaming involved , it was "described" as Media Centre PC which i guess sums up what i used it for .
Right now in this emachine case it seems i have the following working main components -
New Corsair PSU , Seagate HDD (IDE) ,DVD Writer (IDE) , P4 CPU (hopefully igwo)
and 2 x1gb DDR2 RAM 533 (fairly new).
OK - It seems if i want to repair this setup then i need to either get a replica to the original mobo or try to find a compatible upgrade/similar which can work with the existing 533 P4 & RAM ?
Hmm - taking on board your advice , i'll have to give this some more thoughts before deciding how to proceed , but if i carry on browsing for mobo's what are the vital specs i need to look for in order to be a compatible upgrade?
I know it needs to be a Micro ATX ,775 and if i do reuse the P4 it needs to be 533Mhz . As regards the present hardware - i need to also look for 2 x IDE slots yes ?
I can see now why you said the system wasn't worth upgrading .
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#32
makai

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If you think about what you're willing to end up with, it seems to come down to basically the same pc you started with. Yes/No?

Since upgrading would cost more as you go piecemeal, the best thing I can recommend is that you just buy the same Intel motherboard that's already installed. It'll run you $70 (per the link you posted). So for $70, you could get it running again rather than hunting around looking for some other motherboard that won't buy you much given the rest of the hardware installed.

I can see now why you said the system wasn't worth upgrading

I have my own philosophy on upgrading PCs and the only reason I wouldn't upgrade your particular PC is because the cost to gain aspect is just not there. In fact, it's not there for most PC's... it's just that people don't realize it.
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#33
makai

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Have been following this cycle of posts as I have some similar problems. I have an XP w/512 p/4. My Cpu temp is 69C when I boot up in the am and runs between 69C and 70c the rest of the time. I have one fan and it runs between 2415 and 2484 most of the time. Why I watched these posts was to see if either P/S, MOBO or CPU is bad that would be causing my crash and restart. I will keep watching here for any ideas. I am new here and hope this way of following up is OK......URBROJR

Hello urbrojr,
I'm guessing you're hoping to get your machine fixed... thus your post HERE. While I don't mind you looking in, it would be a better idea to get back to your own thread and let Digerati in on the information you posted here. You didn't post this in your thread, and it would be very helpful, as right now, Digerati thinks the problem is related to ram, when in fact it looks more like something else. Please post the info in your thread. Thanks!
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#34
Eden1

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Since upgrading would cost more as you go piecemeal, the best thing I can recommend is that you just buy the same Intel motherboard that's already installed. It'll run you $70 (per the link you posted). So for $70, you could get it running again rather than hunting around looking for some other motherboard that won't buy you much given the rest of the hardware installed.


Ok thanks - if i can still find the same model Intel Board , which is looking tricky in the UK . Generally speaking are the Intel's a good make or do they have a reputation , just that i hate the thought of replacing what might be a poor quality component with the same . It could be that the mobo was only brought down by the Bestec PSU which is why i went with the Corsair ?
I did a bit more searching on a company here - but i'm not sure if they hold the same problem as the Asus i previously linked - would any be compatible ?

http://www.saverstor...uct_id=20030560

http://www.saverstor...uct_id=20021504

http://www.saverstor...uct_id=20018804

http://www.saverstor...uct_id=20029796
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#35
makai

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Intels are very good although I've never used them due to other reasons. People who build computers with the intent of overclocking don't normally use Intel either mainly because the bios settings for overclocking aren't that great. Others who don't overclock have had good luck with them, so yes, Intels have a very good reputation.

I just looked more closely at the components you specified you had to match up the motherboard. I noted that you have a Prescott P4. Thinking about it, I can understand why the caps might have blown. In the days of P4, when the Prescotts replaced the Northwood processors, the first thing that everyone noted was that the Prescotts ran hotter. Not only hotter, but they also stressed the motherboard PWM circuitry. I know this for a fact because I have a 3Ghz Prescott sitting on my shelf that I used for about 1 week before I went back to a 2.4Ghz Northwood on an old Abit board. The stress your P4 caused to the motherboard circuits coupled with the cheap Bestec PSU was probably why your computer crashed within the given years.

Out of the boards you linked, only the MSI supports a P4 Prescott. The MSI only has 1 IDE connector, so you can have a max of 1 IDE harddrive and 1 IDE CD/DVDROM connected to the board. It also doesn't have a RS232 connector, but if you've never used it on the Intel board, then it won't matter. Also, there is no parallel printer port. If you don't care about the printer port or your printer also has USB, then you can use this board. On the good side, it has a DVI vid connector, and it'll run up to C2Quad in case you decide to get rid of the Prescott.

With that, I need to ask you a favor... If you need me to review anymore motherboards you need to provide the link to the manufacture's product page... like THIS. This will save me a lot of time so I don't have to search for it myself. I'm currently helping 14 other people with various computer problems, so any help from you would be appreciated.
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#36
Eden1

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Hi ,

Thanks , i understand -sorry about that , if i manage to find any other boards i'll use that method to post a link .

Ok so it looks like the MSI board is available to me mail order in the UK so that gives me one option . Thanks very much for your rundown of the MSI board , that was extremely helpful - do you think this looks like an ok board and would it be able to handle the temps of the P4 better than the Intel mobo or could that happen again with the Prescott P4?
On that note - based on the probability that the P4 stress & running hot caused the damaged caps , do you think it is likely it could have also affected the CPU itself ?
Furthermore will this still be an issue (overheating) with any future upgrade CPU like Core2 duo/Quad Core should i wish/need to upgrade - or does that not apply to the more recent CPU's ?
It seems with your help , the further i go into this topic the thing that's really limiting my options is the P4 ?

I'm ok with the missing sockets as all my periph's are USB and i've not needed the RS232 connector so ..if i wanted to improve graphics i guess i have that option with this board .
Now , not to take this thread in a different direction but i've done some reading about the potential problems of reinstalling XP with a changed mobo .
I have the repair/reinstall Disk that came with the system - if i change the mobo from the original is this going to be an issue with Microsoft authorisation ?
Obviously that might have a bearing on which way i proceed with the mobo .
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#37
makai

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If you read about P4 processors, you'll notice that the Prescott didn't last too long. There were reasons for this, beyond the development of newer processors, in my opinion. The later C2Ds have no problems with heat so you'll be ok if you upgrade. As for damage to your P4 as it is now... not probable. I wouldn't worry about it until you can test it in a new motherboard. Basically, that's the only way to find out.

To answer the XP installation question... as long as you have a valid license... OEM... on a sticker on your computer, you can use any XP disc to reinstall as long as the disc relates to the licensce... XP Home, or Pro. This means you could borrow a disc from any friend and install XP using your license. Driver-wise... you will need to download for the new motherboard, so basically, your Intel motherboard disc is now history. Some OEM manufacture's install disc is just like a standard XP disc. It will install on any computer, but may have incorrect drivers slipstreamed into the disc. This won't stop you from installing with it, it'll just probably give you some errors after the install, in which case, you just have to ignore them and uninstall any incorrect drivers that may have been installed.
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#38
Eden1

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Ok thanks .
Regarding XP , the version installed on this PC is XP Home Media Centre Edition 2005 as stated on the Sticker on the back . I'm sure the only disk that came with this system is the XP repair/reinstall CD , so i'm not aware of having an Intel Disk so i wonder whether the drivers might be within the XP disk as you described ?
If this is the case would it be fairly straightforward procedure to remove these drivers once the new mobo is installed ? One further point on that -once the new mobo is in place , am i right in thinking it would it be best to do a fresh install with the XP disk ?

Returning to the mobo issue though - i have been reading up as you suggest and (hopefully) am starting to get a grip of the tech's involved .
That being the case - and leaving aside the CPU compatability which i am still weighing up - can you please give me your opinion of the MSI board & the Asus board i linked to previously .
As boards go -how do they compare & which is the better option re make/specs etc - i hope these are the correct manufacturers links ?
http://www.msi.com/i...mp;prod_no=1498

http://uk.asus.com/p...s6iinKxu0y5agcg
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#39
makai

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Ok thanks .
Regarding XP , the version installed on this PC is XP Home Media Centre Edition 2005 as stated on the Sticker on the back . I'm sure the only disk that came with this system is the XP repair/reinstall CD , so i'm not aware of having an Intel Disk so i wonder whether the drivers might be within the XP disk as you described ?
If this is the case would it be fairly straightforward procedure to remove these drivers once the new mobo is installed ? One further point on that -once the new mobo is in place , am i right in thinking it would it be best to do a fresh install with the XP disk ?

No question about it... a fresh install is highly recommended.

Returning to the mobo issue though - i have been reading up as you suggest and (hopefully) am starting to get a grip of the tech's involved .
That being the case - and leaving aside the CPU compatability which i am still weighing up - can you please give me your opinion of the MSI board & the Asus board i linked to previously .
As boards go -how do they compare & which is the better option re make/specs etc - i hope these are the correct manufacturers links ?
http://www.msi.com/i...mp;prod_no=1498

http://uk.asus.com/p...s6iinKxu0y5agcg

Without knowing what you actually intend to do with this computer, what plans you have for hardware, I can't guess at what you're asking. If it were me, I would go with the ASUS only because it has higher specs. What are you planning to do?
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#40
Eden1

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[quote knowing what you actually intend to do with this computer, what plans you have for hardware, I can't guess at what you're asking. If it were me, I would go with the ASUS only because it has higher specs. What are you planning to do?
[/quote]

Ok , well i'm trying to weigh up the options and my thinking was to install the Asus board (or something like it)and go with an upgraded CPU now rather than reuse the present p4 (that may have/or cause future problems) which as i see it is limiting/restricting my options all ways .
For instance why install a board like the MSI purely to enable me to try reuse the P4 - false economy too as oddly enough i can get the Asus board cheaper here in the UK than the Msi .I mean , the other sensible option as you said would be to just put in a like for like Intel board but i think this really is not viable here as (a) it's outdated & unavailable and (b) my fear would be it could potentially be damaged by the Prescott as may have the last ?
Upgrading to faster RAM is not really a major issue which leaves the choice of a replacement upgraded CPU , and that is going to be the major investment .
It seems to me if replacement parts are required to repair a system they may as well (within reason) be improvements on what is currently installed ?
So basically if i go with the Asus -if that is the better board - it is an improvement to the old Intel board ?
That doesn't mean i'm looking to throw money at this system because that would not make any sense as you say but i reckon in studying the approx costs of putting in upgrade parts (as available here) it would still total out less than buying a new system & probably less than sending it in for repair here , and hopefully i would end up with a satisfactory and better machine for my purposes .
As long as The Asus board (or similar) will connect ok with the current IDE hardware - i only want/need this computer for general Home PC use , no gaming really more into internet/media /DVD editing etc .
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#41
makai

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Ok , well i'm trying to weigh up the options and my thinking was to install the Asus board (or something like it)and go with an upgraded CPU now rather than reuse the present p4 (that may have/or cause future problems) which as i see it is limiting/restricting my options all ways .
For instance why install a board like the MSI purely to enable me to try reuse the P4 - false economy too as oddly enough i can get the Asus board cheaper here in the UK than the Msi .I mean , the other sensible option as you said would be to just put in a like for like Intel board but i think this really is not viable here as (a) it's outdated & unavailable and (b) my fear would be it could potentially be damaged by the Prescott as may have the last ?
Upgrading to faster RAM is not really a major issue which leaves the choice of a replacement upgraded CPU , and that is going to be the major investment .
It seems to me if replacement parts are required to repair a system they may as well (within reason) be improvements on what is currently installed ?
So basically if i go with the Asus -if that is the better board - it is an improvement to the old Intel board ?
That doesn't mean i'm looking to throw money at this system because that would not make any sense as you say but i reckon in studying the approx costs of putting in upgrade parts (as available here) it would still total out less than buying a new system & probably less than sending it in for repair here , and hopefully i would end up with a satisfactory and better machine for my purposes .
As long as The Asus board (or similar) will connect ok with the current IDE hardware - i only want/need this computer for general Home PC use , no gaming really more into internet/media /DVD editing etc .

Now that's what I was looking for! Man, that was soooo hard to get out of you! :)

You see, now that I know what you're thinking, I don't have to guess anymore. And, yes, all of what you said makes sense.

Yes, the ASUS board makes better sense than the MSI. It has better specs, but you may also need to upgrade your ram. The ASUS supports dual-channel ram, and while your ram will "probably" run (you have to try it), dual-channel will run faster. Go with OCZ, Corsair, Gskill, or Crucial. Try not to buy what is termed "value ram". Ram nowadays is relatively cheap and you could bet 4 gigs (max this board supports) for about $60. As for the CPU, you need to research what it is you want from it. The C2D is very good and is what I use in all my machines. I've read about the C2Quad, but for what I do, it doesn't make sense to go with it as there's no appreciable gain from what I can see. If later, I wanted to go with C2Quad, prices would be down on it, and I could get it cheap by then.
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#42
Eden1

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[quote
"Now that's what I was looking for! Man, that was soooo hard to get out of you! :)

You see, now that I know what you're thinking, I don't have to guess anymore. And, yes, all of what you said makes sense."

well i hope it was worth the wait !LOL : :)
But really thanks for your help -i've only really come to this present conclusion though after your advice on the issues involved ....but hopefully got there in the end .
Now i didn't realise i might still be able to use the present 533 DDR2 but i'll try look further into that .If it can does that have any bearing on a choice of CPU or no ?
Turning to the CPU and i take on board that i have to decide on my own needs etc , but generally speaking what are the differences (performance wise) between say the Pentium Dual Core's & Core2Duo's ? I can see the mobo specs & the CPU models it accepts but there are many Core2Duo's to choose from - any that you might suggest that would work well in this setup ?
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#43
makai

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You're still asking the same type questions. YOU need to decide what you're going to do with the machine and what you're going to be satisfied with.

but generally speaking what are the differences (performance wise) between say the Pentium Dual Core's & Core2Duo's ?

Visit THIS page.

I can see the mobo specs & the CPU models it accepts but there are many Core2Duo's to choose from - any that you might suggest that would work well in this setup ?

I can't make a suggestion because I can't be responsible for choices you have to make yourself. There are as many pros and cons as there are CPUs out there.
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#44
Eden1

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[quote
You're still asking the same type questions. YOU need to decide what you're going to do with the machine and what you're going to be satisfied with.

Sorry i think i probably didn't phrase them in the way i meant to and it certainly wasn't intended as a " what PC should i buy ?" type of question as i know that's impossible to answer.
I appreciate I need to make that decision myself and gradually i think i'm sifting through the many options and hopefully not too far from settling on a decision !
What i should have said was i am looking now at the many options of Dual Core& Core2Dup selections and have my choice pinned down to either an E5400 Pentium DCore or a Core2D E7400 .
I'm rebuilding this to a budget -there is no sense going above that as discussed previously - with this in mind there is not too much difference
(cost wise) here between these 2 CPU's . Where i'm having trouble is - is there an appreciable difference (in general speed & application performance) between these 2 processors ?
As someone who is trying to learn more about computer hardware i absolutely appreciate it is a complex business . In layman's terms once a Mobo is selected , it is hard not to think -"right i have x budget and i want a dual core CPU - it might seem that a Core2Duo is better than a DCPentium which in turn is better than a DCCeleron ?
In my situation -keeping to a budget there is very little difference in price between (for example) the E5300 or the E5400 and the C2DE7400 which is within range .
Not having owned a Dual Core i can only refer to my experience of the P4 in the present system - is it possible to ask that in your opinion i would notice a major difference if i installed ANY Dual Core CPU ,compared to the Prescott P4 ?
If that is the case - then would it be that the system would work better with the Pentium DC E5400 but even better still with the C2D E7400 ?
I know it is then up to me to decide whether it is worth putting that little bit extra expense into the system - what i'm trying to work out is how much difference will i have which each processor .
I am basing the above on being used with a mobo such as the ASUS P5KPL-AM board previously linked to .

Lastly - you mentioned this board may/may not work with my DDR2 533 Ram , i have found another ASUS model available which seems to indicate this and i wonder if you could please give me a comparison of this to the P5KPL ?
(The Asus site describes it as uATX Board but the size specs seem to indicate in mATX range ?)

http://uk.asus.com/p...C4H82eOmIEKdVAs
Thanks
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#45
makai

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The Asus site describes it as uATX Board but the size specs seem to indicate in mATX range

First off, the "u" stands for "micro" so the boards are the same.

As for P4 versus CD versus C2D. You probably won't notice the difference in "real time"... meaning you won't "sense" anything. All of them will "seem" fast and all of them will run applications very well. You will only notice a difference if you have to start crunching numbers... ie, encoding video... and only if you actually "measure" the time it takes for different processors. But then, it won't be a humoungous increase just because it's C2D over P4. Don't get the wrong impression... P4's aren't slouches! However, given your choices, I would go with the C2D E7400. If I had to choose given "mine"... I would go with the E8400.

Did you read the Wiki page I linked? Here's the P4 PAGE. I realize that all of this is information overload, but you need to read to gain some sort of grasp on processors and the differences between them.
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