Hi JBRG and
There is nothing really you can do. Notebooks are not designed to be upgraded beyond things like more RAM (maybe) or a larger disk drive. This is one of the primary reasons notebooks will NEVER be desktop replacements (or good gaming machines either) - in spite of what some notebook marketing weenies would like us to believe.
One thing though - keeping our systems updated is a key element to "practicing safe computing" and I see you do not have Windows 7 Service Pack 1 installed. That is a mistake and you should update that immediately to ensure your system is patched and secured, either through Windows Update, or via a download from here.
That sucks. Well im thinking about building this Budget Gaming PC Build
ASUS M5A97 AMD 9 Series ($100)
AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition ($125)
Crucial Ballistix 4GB DDR3 (1333 Mhz) ($25)
EVGA GeForce GTX 550 Ti SuperClocked (1GB) ($125)
Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB ($85)
Sony Optiarc 24x DVDRW Drive ($18)
Cooler Master RC-430-KWN1 Elite 430 ($40)
Cooler Master Elite Series 460 Watts ($30)
Total Cost: $548 (USD)
Recommended Budget Gaming PC Build
This is a great example of a highly capable gaming computer at a very affordable price. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean it lacks quality or performance and you will find it to be a strong enough build to take on any of the latest games quite well.
The amount of bang for your buck is quite astounding and it could easily outperform many pre-built computers in stores today that go for twice the price. Let's take a closer look at each component chosen for the budget build and why they were included.
The ASUS M5A97 AMD 9 Series AM3+ Motherboard chosen for the budget build is everything you would need in a good quality motherboard suited for gaming. ASUS are known to produce great value motherboards and this board is no exception. It also comes with all the features that you would ever need and is very straightforward to work with for first-time builders.
Combined with the current great value of the AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition and you have a very powerful base for such a cheap system. This chip is still a favorite amongst gamers and represents the very best bang for your buck in terms of gaming performance for a budget build. I would still choose Phenom II models over the recently released "bulldozer" AMD FX range at this stage, as the new range has generally failed to impress gamers so far by not living up to performance hype.
4GB of Crucial Ballistix DDR3 RAM is an excellent value deal at the moment, and 4GB is enough for smooth performance in games right now. Crucial is one of the most respected manufacturers of quality and reliable RAM for desktops. If you want to give the budget build a significant performance boost, consider getting 2 or even more of these RAM sticks for your build.
The ever popular GeForce GTX 550 Ti SuperClocked 1GB is one of the best value mid-range cards on the market right now. With this beast inside your machine you can easily play all of the latest games quite well, and it comes with a large 1GB of onboard GDDR5 video memory to help with the more graphically intensive games.
You may have noticed a dedicated sound card was not included for this build and we have just gone with integrated audio on the motherboard which is good enough for those on a tight budget. But if you are set on getting a separate sound card for your build we have included a good value sound card in the build coming up next which would work just as well with this build.
The Cooler Master RC-430-KWN1 Elite 430 is a great value case for a custom gaming build and is easy to work with for the novices out there. It has good airflow, enough room for all the components, and a sturdy quality design despite its low price. The case looks quite good too with an LED-lit fan and a see-through side panel to see your parts in action when you're done. You can't go wrong with Cooler Master products.
The Cooler Master Elite Series 460 Watt is good enough to support the budget build and this power suppy unit is very quiet, easy to install, and Cooler Master PSUs are known for quality and reliability. 460 watts is more than enough to power the budget build, and you would only need a more powerful unit if you plan on adding a range of other components to the build.
The Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB does the job well and 500 gigabytes of storage is usually enough for most people. Western Digital are a reliable and respected manufacturer and the Caviar Blue drives are quite speedy and quiet too.
Finally, there is the internal Sony Optiarc 24x DVDRW Drive which is great for the price and does everything you would need it to do including reading and writing of many DVD and CD formats. It runs quietly too compared to most other DVD drives.
So that makes up the core system for the budget gaming desktop computer build. All you need for a working system is a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and operating system software too (64-bit Windows 7 is what we would recommend personally). We share some good-priced recommendations for peripherals, operating system software, and accessories at the bottom of this page to help you with your choices if you don't already own these.
But first let's take a look at the mid range build, which will appeal to those with a little more to spend on their gaming desktop computer for even better performance and further lastability.
Sound good to you guys?