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  • Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

    I know the general consensus (I've even given it) is that a new system is better than a upgrade.

    I'm asking for some honest advice.

    I recently (as in beginning of 2007) got a ASUS replacement board for my "dead" Gigabyte but decided to stick with AGP because I did not have the funds for new memory and new graphics. In all, the only three components "upgraded" in my rig was the graphics card, CPU, and motherboard.

    Graphics Card: 256 MB 7600GS (upgraded on 08/2006)
    Processor Chip: 2.66 GHz Pentium D 805 (upgraded on 01/2007)
    Motherboard: ASUS P5PE-VM (upgraded on 01/2007)

    I did a new cost assessment and trimmed away as much cost:quality as I could on my "future" build and came to a estimate figure of about $1250 shipped. Of course as a poor college student and future costs and such, I don't think I'll be able to see $1250 until either Q3 of 2008 or Q4 of 2008.

    I have played the CoD4 demo, but only able to do so on the lowest possible settings. In addition, I almost only play 2142 and also do so on the lowest resolutions and graphics settings which still only gives me 35 fps (15 on OS/EMP strikes).

    I was thinking about upgrading my 7600GS to a 7800GS by the end of this year (job permitting) and was wondering what all of you thought?

    Would it be able to do some of the following:
    1. Hold me out for another 6 - 8 months
    2. Let me play Call of Duty 4 on medium settings with ~40+ fps
    3. Let me play Battlefield 2142 at medium settings with ~40+ fps
    |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
    TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
    Former 9th & 13th

    Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
    Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





    SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

    TG Primer and Rules

  • #2
    Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

    You could probably pull off 40FPS with the new card. Although, I don't know what resolution you use. I think you'll get 40FPS @ 1024x768. I'm not sure how demanding COD4 will be but I think it would be playable at least with low settings. I googled the system requirements and a 7800 is the recommended requirements with the 6600 being minimum.

    I'd say go for it and even more so if you can find a buyer for the old card. Using that 7600 until near the end of next year will be a pain. At least the 7800 would be less painful.

    - It's who you game with.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

      It really just depends on how much you can spend.
      Tom's Hardware has VGA charts they publish regularly as well as articles for the Best Gaming Cards For Your Money about once or twice a month. Just take as much money as you can spend on the card, check those charts and compatibility w/your mobo and go from there.

      You didn't mention how much RAM you have. That's important.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

        I have 1 GB of RAM dual channeled (@ DDR 333 speed). The newer charts don't really apply to me anymore since they cover only PCI-E cards (I'm still on AGP).
        |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
        TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
        Former 9th & 13th

        Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
        Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





        SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

        TG Primer and Rules

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

          Originally posted by Acreo Aeneas View Post
          I have 1 GB of RAM dual channeled (@ DDR 333 speed). The newer charts don't really apply to me anymore since they cover only PCI-E cards (I'm still on AGP).
          Toms Hardware usually gives you the best AGP choices as well.

          http://www.tomshardware.com/2007/10/...ney/page4.html

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

            Hey Acreo, my system, which is very similar to yours (Pentium D 3.4 Ghz, 1 gig DDR RAM, 7600GS) can run CoD 4 demo on medium, without any lag whatsoever. I'm also able to play Battlefield 2142 on medium and the only difference between our PC's is the processor. So, I personally think upgrading your processor will have a better result than upgrading your Graphics Card. The difference between the 7600 GS and the 7800GS can't be that big anyway. I do think there is a big difference between your processor and a cheap Core 2 Duo, like the E4400. An upgrade to the E4400 will cost you about $20 less than the 7800GS (prices from Newegg) and will probably give you a good result.
            What you could also do, and is the cheapest option, is getting another gig of RAM. I'm not sure what kind of increase in performance this will give you, though.

            If I were you I would go with a new processor. For $130 you can get a E4400 and for $150 you can get a E4600, which both are about 50% faster than the one you have now.
            Upgrading your RAM doesn't seem like a bad idea either, but I have no idea how much RAM affects your FPS.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

              I'd probably recommend saving up for a new system, but this card is probably your best bet for AGP: X1950 Pro $115

              Its the best value card on the market in terms of price/performance.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                I would try to get a 7900 KO or something similar. 256 bit and still great in todays games.

                Any word if the new midrange from Nvidia will support AGP at all?
                Skud


                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                  I sort of want to stick to nVidia since I've had some so-so issues with ATI drivers in the past (even though they are fairly stable). Although, I also have the x1950 under consideration along with the new HD2600GT/HD2400 (lack of driver support right now).

                  I can't seem to find a AGP version of the 7900 KO, I"ve only seen the 7900GS COs. In addition, there is an issue with my specific motherboard in that it can not handle any video cards with memories larger than 256MB (will give BoD and instability). From what I've read on the official ASUS forums, the problem can't be rectified via a BIOS upgrade (so wish it could).

                  Officially, it doesn't seem as though nVidia is rising to the challenge of mid-range AGP cards from their 8xxx line (ATI has released the HD2400 and HD2600 on AGP).

                  --------------------------------

                  Concrete,
                  I don't know why someone else seems to have a better performance with their 7600GS vs. mines. Pfeil also has a 7600GS and he also gets a good 10 fps higher than I do. Is my processor really bottlenecking my system (could it be the 533mhz bus speed)?

                  I also figure that if I'm going to spend money on a new processor, I might as well start spending on building my next system.

                  Edit: It seems I was mistaken about Call of Duty 4. I'm able to play it on "normal" settings and had the "optimal settings" was set that way. All of that choppiness in Crysis somehow made me think I had Call of Duty 4 also on low settings.

                  Concrete (or anyone else), do you know what the console command is for framerates display in CoD4?

                  -------------------------------

                  For $180 I could also get a 7900GS, but according to Tom's VGA charts, both the 7800 and 7900 will only give me about a 20-30 fps boost.

                  On the same token, I could spend $100 on a new mobo for my next system, etc.

                  I'm so indecisive at this point. I'm sure a month or so from now I'll still be twiddling my fingers on deciding how to spend any money that I make. I wish AGP cards aren't so expensive (a comparable PCI-E one is $50+ less).
                  Last edited by Acreo Aeneas; 10-31-2007, 11:04 PM.
                  |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                  TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                  Former 9th & 13th

                  Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                  Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                  SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

                  TG Primer and Rules

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                    Try this one: /cg_drawfps 1 (after opening the console with ~ of course) or download the trial version of FRAPS. And yes, it would be a good choice to get a processor which will also fit your needs for the future. It would be a waste to buy a new one now, and another one next year. The E4400/4600 might not be the fastest processors around, but they're famous for their awesome overclock value. I have heard of people clocking them at 3 Ghz +. This way, you will have a processor capable of the same speeds high end processors do. The downside is, that you don't have as much L2 cache and of course the usual stuff with overclocking; overheating, warranty expires etc.

                    So this seems like a good option, but you do have to take in consideration that in a year way better processors and graphics cards will be standard and if you decide to create a whole new system then (with this processor) and you buy one of those new Graphics Cards, you might get exactly the same problem you're getting now. (bottlenecking)

                    The only way to get rid of this risk, is to either buy a higher end processor now (E6600 +), to be ready for the future, or to buy a low end processor now (these day's low end proc. will still be plenty faster than the one you have now) and fully upgrade your system in a year.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                      Originally posted by Concr3te View Post
                      Try this one: /cg_drawfps 1 (after opening the console with ~ of course) or download the trial version of FRAPS. And yes, it would be a good choice to get a processor which will also fit your needs for the future. It would be a waste to buy a new one now, and another one next year. The E4400/4600 might not be the fastest processors around, but they're famous for their awesome overclock value. I have heard of people clocking them at 3 Ghz +. This way, you will have a processor capable of the same speeds high end processors do. The downside is, that you don't have as much L2 cache and of course the usual stuff with overclocking; overheating, warranty expires etc.

                      So this seems like a good option, but you do have to take in consideration that in a year way better processors and graphics cards will be standard and if you decide to create a whole new system then (with this processor) and you buy one of those new Graphics Cards, you might get exactly the same problem you're getting now. (bottlenecking)

                      The only way to get rid of this risk, is to either buy a higher end processor now (E6600 +), to be ready for the future, or to buy a low end processor now (these day's low end proc. will still be plenty faster than the one you have now) and fully upgrade your system in a year.
                      I don't think a processor upgrade alone will help much. The Pentium D isn't great compared to what's out now but using a E4400 with a 7600GS isn't much of a difference. Unless you mean a video card upgrade and CPU upgrade at the same time.

                      /cg_drawfps 1
                      This is one of many ways to activate in game FPS. Might as well suggest trying 'fps 1' or 'drawfps 1' or 'togglefps'. Fraps makes more sense to see what the FPS is since there's no typing or searching up commands invovled.

                      A motherboard upgrade seems like a good idea. Try to squeeze out some extra cash and get a motherboard that you would normally get in a full system upgrade. Then you can still use the Pentium D and a PCI-e video of the same level as a 7900GS. Although, you'd still have to get new RAM since you're running on DDR1. This kind of upgrade costs more but at least RAM is cheap and, of the new components, the video card is possibly the only part you'd want to replace in a year.

                      - It's who you game with.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                        Hmm, my brain is pushing to me stick to what I have now and build my next system. I still have my original parts lying above my system from the last upgrade and I can't find anything to put it (minus the CPU which seems to have been shot). Plus there's a long list of things I hate about my system.

                        (You guys are great. Came up with so many options for me. :))

                        Concrete, Sarc, I'll try those commands. I want to see how far I can up the graphics settings before I suffer bad fps. :)
                        |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                        TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                        Former 9th & 13th

                        Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                        Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                        SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

                        TG Primer and Rules

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                          You should upgrade to a p-p-p-powerbook.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                            Originally posted by Acreo Aeneas View Post
                            Concrete, Sarc, I'll try those commands. I want to see how far I can up the graphics settings before I suffer bad fps. :)
                            Oh, don't try those commands in BF. That one is something long like 'renderer.drawfps 1'. That's why I suggest running Fraps all the time. When you get your new rig, it'll be even more important to run it all the time so you can record video! :D

                            - It's who you game with.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Thoughts and Advice on Upgrade?

                              Originally posted by .tritone. View Post
                              You should upgrade to a p-p-p-powerbook.

                              :row__577:


                              Sarc,
                              Yeah, I know what the command is in the BF series lol. I just got so used to the Q3 engine and now there seems to be a different engine used for each game. So the fps command leaves me guessing all the time. :row1_20:
                              |TG-18th| Acreo Aeneas
                              TG World of Tanks Clan Executive Officer
                              Former 9th & 13th

                              Pronounciation: Eh-Cree-Oh Ah-Nay-Ess
                              Still can't say it? Call me Acorn then. -.-





                              SSDs I Own: Kingston HyperX 3K (240 GB), Samsung 840 Pro (256 GB), Samsung 840 EVO (250 GB), Samsung 840 x 2 (120 GB), Plextor M5S (120 GB), OCZ Vertex (30 GB)

                              TG Primer and Rules

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