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  • Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

    I am looking to upgrade my computer to provide for an enjoyable ARMA 2 experience.

    Here's what I have:
    Processor Intel Pentium 4 3.40GHz with HT Technology, Intel EM64T, 2Mb L2 Cache, 800MHz FSB, FCLGA775
    Memory (RAM) 1GB (I forget which type)
    Video ABIT RX300 SE PCI Express with 128Mb DDR Memory
    OS Windows 7

    Clearly, the graphics card is the major weak spot. Would a GeForce 9500 GT 1GB card do? Open to all suggestions.

  • #2
    Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

    I would go with the 1GB, because it will improve all of your game graphics. Not just ArmA's. I would also look at upgrading ram maybe another gig or two. Also, I highly recommend you look into getting a solid state hard drive. ArmA is a HD intensive game and the faster you can pull data off of it the better it will run.

    [unit][squadl][command2]

    KnyghtMare ~You could always tell the person holding the gun to your head you would like to play on a different server...

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    • #3
      Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

      Welcome to TG Invictus. Hope to see you in Takistan soon.

      What is your budget?

      Dredge is spot on when it comes to the SSD. I ordered one up for my new build and I haven't seen a flickering texture rendition since I installed OA.

      You could build a very good ARMA box for ~ $700-$1,000, maybe less depending on what you have that you could use in the new build. ARMA (I think) is also very cpu intensive. I know they are at end of life but you could upgrade to a quad core 9550 with an SSD and one of the hot vid cards out today...like a GTX 460 for instance.
      sigpic
      |TG-1st|Grunt
      ARMA Admin (retired)
      Pathfinder-Spartan 5

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      • #4
        Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

        Originally posted by Invictus View Post
        I am looking to upgrade my computer to provide for an enjoyable ARMA 2 experience.

        Here's what I have:
        Processor Intel Pentium 4 3.40GHz with HT Technology, Intel EM64T, 2Mb L2 Cache, 800MHz FSB, FCLGA775
        Memory (RAM) 1GB (I forget which type)
        Video ABIT RX300 SE PCI Express with 128Mb DDR Memory
        OS Windows 7

        Clearly, the graphics card is the major weak spot. Would a GeForce 9500 GT 1GB card do? Open to all suggestions.
        Your Processor is a major weakness, it's 2 generations behind and is a single core. Try to find out what motherboard you have and get a list of compatible processors, it is important you upgrade to a core 2 duo if not a core 2 quad. The graphics card is also a bit lacking, upgrading to a better card would definitely help I suggest either a ATI 4870 or ATI 4850, their great cards at an affordable price.
        |TG-73rd|Socomseal
        |TG-73rd Member| Former TG Irregular ArmA Platoon Leader| Former TG ArmA Admin XO| TG Pathfinder - Spartan 1 |TGU ArmA Instructor |Former TG-18th Member| |Former TG-1st Member|

        "Its easy to argue about issues from afar. But until you have experienced the issue first hand, you have not seen all the facts."

        Carver you will be cut off for a long time before reinforcements can reach you "I am the reinforcements the main force is only coming to bring me body bags and to clean up the mess Im about to make" - General Carver

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        • #5
          Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

          Thanks guys for the input! The service academy I attended issued us computers and I am attempting to upgrade it to fit modern gaming needs. Would you recommend I salvage parts from it instead or just buy a completely new box?

          Here are the full specs:

          Mainboard Dell Precision Workstation 370 mainboard with Intel 925X chipset
          Processor Intel Pentium 4 3.40GHz with HT Technology, Intel EM64T, 2Mb L2 Cache, 800MHz FSB, FCLGA775
          Memory (RAM) 512Mb Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM 400MHz Memory
          Hard Disk Drive 160GB Serial ATA Hard Disk Drive
          DVD-ROM Drive Dell 16XDVD+/-RW Drive
          Ethernet Integrated Broadcom BCM5751 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet
          Sound Integrated full-duplex audio
          Operating System Windows 7

          ----

          Budget? Tell me more about these $700-1000 boxes if that is what the best plan is.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

            First I'll say...i'm no expert like Bamboo and a handful of other regular posters but I have built 4 or 5 gaming machines over the 5 years I've been hanging around TG. The list below is highly influenced by personal experience with my own components over the past few years. Others will have equally valid view points. Also I think you should look at the Hardware and Software forum on another part of the TG site for additional input

            You didn't mention your PSU. That's key, especially if you upgrade to one of the high end GPU's. I wouldn't go with anything below say 600 W. Mine is a corsair 750 and I wish I had a 1000W. Don't scrimp on the PSU. it's a key piece of gear. This is my PSU. There is a thread on PSU's in that other forum I linked you to.

            Your DDR 2 RAM would probably be okay as is. This you could update later on in the future to a higher speed RAM if you wanted to.

            Motherboards are a matter of personal preference on brand and features. I like Asus. I've had Gigabyte too but I like the ASUS better I think. Here is a link to an affordable skt 775 ASUS MOBO

            Dell cases are proprietary which means you usually can't just switch out parts like the MB as they might not be compatible form factor wise. Same deal as the mobo's...it usually comes down to personal preference. You can get a decent case for less than $100 bucks but you should look at many options before you decide. I've had good luck with Cooler Master and with Thermaltake...but I've gone high end (~$150-$200) with my choices on both of those brands and never regretted either of them. Currently I'm using a Cooler Master Cosmos. The thing is a beast....full tower with mucho space and some very nice features.


            CPU

            GPU

            HD (SSD)

            The listed components work out to about $950. You could tweak this easily by choosing a less expensive vid card or perhaps a mother board with fewer features. You may also want to add an after market cooler for your cpu. Also you could look on ebay for some of these components but for me I've always been uneasy with buying other people's used gear but I've heard plenty of success stories with this approach.

            As for myself I'm typically not a first gen adopter so in the past I was always looking for those deals on the card or chip that used to be the top end. I think the list above represents this approach with an exception maybe towards the GPU. SSD's are evolving fast and are well past the first and even second generation of this technology.

            Hope this helps.

            **See Socom's post about prebuilt machines just below this one. It didn't even occur to me but there is some merit to buying a prebuilt machine...especially when it comes to support. If you build it yourself you are on your own if you have problems. With that said...i've never been able to not figure out an issue eventually with any of my builds. Google rocks.
            Last edited by Grunt 70; 07-19-2010, 02:36 PM.
            sigpic
            |TG-1st|Grunt
            ARMA Admin (retired)
            Pathfinder-Spartan 5

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            • #7
              Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

              By the looks of things, your system is very old and you would be much better off by building or buying a new machine. If your looking at a good future proof prebuilt then I suggest this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16883229190 or http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16883113135

              If you want to build your own then you want to get a
              - SSD and regular hard drive,
              - a 750w or above PSU,
              - ATI 5000 series or Nvidia 200-400 series graphics card,
              - 6 or more GB DDR3 ram,
              - Intel Core I7 or AMD Phenom x6 processor
              - A good case with good cooling
              |TG-73rd|Socomseal
              |TG-73rd Member| Former TG Irregular ArmA Platoon Leader| Former TG ArmA Admin XO| TG Pathfinder - Spartan 1 |TGU ArmA Instructor |Former TG-18th Member| |Former TG-1st Member|

              "Its easy to argue about issues from afar. But until you have experienced the issue first hand, you have not seen all the facts."

              Carver you will be cut off for a long time before reinforcements can reach you "I am the reinforcements the main force is only coming to bring me body bags and to clean up the mess Im about to make" - General Carver

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

                Great minds think alike I guess. Socom's point about future upgrading is valid. It will cost more but in the end it will last you longer so it's a trade off.

                Also look here. This is a thread that Bamboo posted up just before ARMA 2 hit the streets. It's a bit dated but still contains lots of helpful info.
                sigpic
                |TG-1st|Grunt
                ARMA Admin (retired)
                Pathfinder-Spartan 5

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

                  Thanks everyone! Grunt, I tried looking there before posting here but I seem to be locked out of that thread. Missing permissions to read it, at least.

                  Socom, do you know if it would be possible to outfit the prebuilts you linked with the SSD?

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

                    Unfortunately, most prebuilts do not come with an SSD and the few that do on Newegg are only 30gb SSD. If your going to get an SSD, I recommend getting a 60 GB one and installing it yourself into the prebuilt then you can load all your games onto the SSD without worrying about space issues and leave the OS + media on regular HD.
                    |TG-73rd|Socomseal
                    |TG-73rd Member| Former TG Irregular ArmA Platoon Leader| Former TG ArmA Admin XO| TG Pathfinder - Spartan 1 |TGU ArmA Instructor |Former TG-18th Member| |Former TG-1st Member|

                    "Its easy to argue about issues from afar. But until you have experienced the issue first hand, you have not seen all the facts."

                    Carver you will be cut off for a long time before reinforcements can reach you "I am the reinforcements the main force is only coming to bring me body bags and to clean up the mess Im about to make" - General Carver

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

                      FYI, I have 4GB of RAM with an Athlon Phenom II x4, and never see ARMA use more than half of the memory and ~80% of the CPU. There's plenty to be said for futureproofing your system, but if your concern is ARMA2, the SSD and graphics card are where you're going to see the most bang for your buck once you're at that baseline.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Upgrading Computer/ Graphics Card

                        I have a amd phenom x4 with 8gb of ddr2 ram, 1tb on a regular hard drive (7200rpm,really good cache and fast read/write) OS (vista x64) on a 250gb slower hd, an overclocked GTS 250 NVidia, and a 750 PSU. I play on high but post process at normal cause I don't like the glows. This does fine and in reality you only need 6gb of ram. In all with a new case and 24" monitor it cost me $1000 1.5 years ago. I highly recommend a GTX260/ati 5000+ series card though as that is my weak point right now and they are cheap compared to what they were when I bought mine. Arma is cpu intensive but still doesn't even get me close to 100% with view distance at 5000m.

                        A SSD is really helpful but not absolutely needed as you can see with my build. However do your research/read reviews if you do decide to go with a normal hard drive because rpm does not equal speed. I did and my cost per gb was cheap and its plays arma 2 great. But do give a good consideration to SSDs like some have said for future upgrade purposes.

                        Also I see a fps hit without running game booster by iobit. With vista and even 7 this is a game changer. It's free and it just shuts down system hogging windows programs and gives you the option to go back to normal mode once your done gaming. You can also to tell it to shut down various spy ware programs and others too. I really recommend this for all arma players it helps alot.

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