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Upgrading a Box PC


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#1
Miqo

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Hi, I'm clueless when it comes to building PCs and I'm looking for help with the techy side. :yes:


So about half a year ago I bought a computer from a store, not really knowing how much I could save by putting it together myself piece by piece. It's already quickly getting outdated which is why I'm looking to upgrade the video card (PCI-e 2.0 x16 slot), to keep up with the new game releases and their increasing reqs to use decent settings.

Current specs for reference:
Motherboard: Micro-Star D2415
CPU: Intel Core i3 550 @ 3.2GHz (4Mb Cache)
Graph Card: Ati HD 5670 (1Gb VRam)
Memory: 8 Gb


Browsing through the different alternatives I ended up being interested in GTX 480 (link), a high-end graphics card that still has a relatively affordable price, but I'm concerned over a couple problems it might cause to a computer that really wasn't designed to be used with great parts: CPU bottlenecks and electricity consumption.

About the CPU bottlenecking the performance.
It's going to slow things down a bit but upgrading the bad CPU is so expensive that I'd avoid it by all means if possible, since upgrading to a new processor suddenly doubles the cash spent on upgrading. Intel Core i3 550 (overclocked) is however so likely to be outclassed in this company that I'd like to get a recommendation on a CPU to buy and alternatively a suggestion on another video card that wouldn't be a waste with this processor, assuming that the current setup wouldn't make sense.

Increased power consumption.
The box computer didn't come with the space for a power supply located inside of the case. Either this means that a) I need to find another way to get extra power, b) I need to buy a new computer case and re-assemble everything inside of it or c) I have to find another video card to get which remains within the boundaries of the power available now. Since HD 5670 uses up less than 75 watts it seems likely there's need for extra power with all of the new video cards. The only information that I managed to find about the current power source was here, as follows, "Max. output of single power supply 330 W" and that wouldn't be enough for any of the new video cards not to even mention powering up the processor as well. :)

In all, I think getting a new case for the additional power supply, then a video card is my best option. Are there any problems that I don't know about that the experts here see?

Thanks for the help! :)

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#2
rshaffer61

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Are we to take it this is a desktop system?

The box computer didn't come with the space for a power supply located inside of the case.

Impossible statement as there has to be some type of power supply already in the case that you connect your power cord to. You don't add a second power supply though you can it would be much easier to just replace the existing power supply.
To make this a lot easier please respond with the following.

Before we can help you need to provide the following so I can start you in the right direction.
Laptop or Desktop?
  • If a name brand system then what brand, make and model is the system?
  • If custom built then what brand, make and model is the motherboard
  • Total memory installed
  • Total hard drive capacity and free space
  • What steps have you taken so far to resolve the issue

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#3
phillpower2

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Specs http://www.fsc-onlin...10_Desktop.html
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#4
rshaffer61

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Thanks Phill for the link as that helps a lot.

Now the PSU in most pre-made systems are sub standard and not very reliable. I would first recommend the replacement of that with a name brand one like this HERE. Unless you can give us the specs on the current PSU this one should be able to di everything you need it for. :)

The I3 cpu should have no problem running even the newest games released now.
Your memory is way more then any game needs at this point.
The upgrade of the video card is a personal preference but the one you chose is great.
I myself use the 5750 ATI HD and play all the newer games with no problem.
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#5
Miqo

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Thank you for the responses.

Yep it's a desktop computer, Fujitsu Esprimo P1510, although the specs linked by phillpower2 are incorrect. Mine has an i3 550 CPU and 8 Gb memory (as mentioned in the post).

Replacing the power source with a sufficient one instead of adding a supplemental one while replacing the case of the whole computer does seem easier. :)
Thanks for that idea.

Edited by Miqo, 22 October 2011 - 09:33 AM.

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#6
rshaffer61

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If you wanted to try and replace the PSU yourself I am including the following tutorial on how to replace the PSU in a system. The tutorial includes step by step instructions along with pictures to help guide you through the process. The tutorial is located HERE if you would like to take a look through it.
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#7
Miqo

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Wow, thanks for all the help! :) The tutorial will be useful to have.
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#8
rshaffer61

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You may find this topic tutorial HERE helpful also. Though it deals and shows the steps to build a computer from the beginning to the end... it does have the steps on how to install and connect components like the video cards. Even though you are not building a new system the steps to connect and power a newer video card will be the same.
If you ever decide to build a completely new system you have one of the if not the best tutorial i have seen in 15 years on how to to do it yourself. It was created by two of our own staff members Troy and Artellos. Fantastic tech people and staff members. :)
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#9
phillpower2

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FUJITSU ESPRIMO P1510/2 Processor Intel® Core™ i3/530 13GHz Cache Chipset D2950 INTEL HM55 Memory ... MID Tower Desktop > FUJITSU ESPRIMO P1510/2
Just a cautionary note, as the present case is the Mid Tower type I suggest that you check the dimensions of the present PSU and the available space inside of the case.
CX500 Dimensions 5.9"(W) x 3.4"(H) x 5.5"(L) the dimensions of the PSU that Ron suggested earlier.
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#10
rshaffer61

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Thanks again Phill and as always much appreciated. I have been busy so I type things without getting all the instructions included. Your backup is always welcome. :)
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#11
Miqo

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Now the PSU in most pre-made systems are sub standard and not very reliable. I would first recommend the replacement of that with a name brand one like this HERE.


Can you connect four 4-pin peripheral connectors to a videocard instead of using two 8-pin PCIE connectors? Would I have enough connectors for everything else with that PSU?
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#12
rshaffer61

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I don't think that will work because of the pin out configurations on the 4 pin connectors.
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#13
phillpower2

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What type of "4-pin peripheral connectors" are you referring to, see http://www.playtool....connectors.html also which PSU did you purchase.

Depending on whether or not you have the relevant spare molex or SATA power connections you may have the option to use connection converters such as the examples @ http://www.google.co...ved=0CD0Q8wIwAA and http://www.specialte...-pid-16823.html
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