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Thread: Upgrade Ideas

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Upgrade Ideas

    Hi Guys,

    Well, it's been about 4 years since I received my computer from Puget, and it's still humming along nicely. The only issue is that it is 4 years old, and not really the fastest kid in town anymore! I was looking for suggestions to upgrade my system to give it a bit more useful life, as it is extremely well built and it would pain me to pitch it for a new computer. My system is configured as:

    Motherboard: XFX nVidia 780i
    CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 (Arctic Cooling Freezer 7 Pro)
    RAM: 2 x OCZ DDR2-800 Reaper 2048MB w/Heatpipe Cooling (Upgraded to 4 x 2 GB, 8GB total)
    Hard Drive: Western Digital SATA Raptor 150GB
    DVD ROM: Asus 20x DVD-RW Lightscribe SATA
    Case: Antec P182
    Power Supply: Corsair TX 650W
    OS: Upgraded to Windows 7 64
    Graphics Card: 2 x GeForce GTs 250 1GB (SLI enabled)

    I do a bit of gaming, mostly MMO's when I'm taking a break from work and office products, and the newer games (SWOTOR) just don't run as quick as I would like anymore.

    Can/Should I think about replacing the hard drive with a SSD? I see that they are coming down in price now, but I'm not sure if my system would make the best use of them? What about graphics card? Would replacing 2 in SLI with a single more modern card be a good idea? I'm looking forward to shopping for a new computer in the next year or so, but I'd like to stretch this one a bit yet. I'm open to suggestions, thanks!

    Adam

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,853

    Default Re: Upgrade Ideas

    Moving to a solid-state drive will be an amazing boost to general usage - I've been using one for about three years now, and I love it! Windows boots faster, programs launch more quickly, you just don't end up waiting on the computer as much. However, it will not boost frame-rates in games: that is a factor of the CPU + video card, not the drives.

    If you are looking for a boost on the gaming front, I would consider a new graphics card. The dual GTS 250s aren't bad, even today, but there are faster cards now. ATI just came out with an upgraded line, the Radeon HD 7900-series, and I believe rumors are that nVidia will follow suit in the next couple of months. If they do, that would likely be the best time to buy - so that you get in on a new generation of technology.
    William George
    Customer Service Lead
    Puget Custom Computers
    william@pugetsystems.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Upgrade Ideas

    Thanks William,

    One final question is: Will my system make good use of a new graphics card and SSD without a bottleneck somewhere else? (e.g. CPU)

    I appreciate the response!

    Adam

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,853

    Default Re: Upgrade Ideas

    The SSD, yes - nothing else is really a factor when speed of accessing data is considered. Actually, I guess I should take that back: it depends on the SSD you get. Some of the fastest these days use the third-generation of SATA interface (SATA III / SATA 6Gbs) and your motherboard doesn't support that. So if you got one of those drives, your SSD wouldn't reach its full potential. If you get a second-gen SATA II / SATA 3Gbps drive, though, it should not be limited by anything else in your system.

    Now on the video card, when it comes to gaming there is a balance between the CPU and video card(s). If you go too high on one or the other then the weaker side becomes a limiting factor. Your CPU is still a perfectly decent one for most games, though, so as long as you don't go overboard on the graphics you should be fine (dual high-end cards would be too much, for example).
    William George
    Customer Service Lead
    Puget Custom Computers
    william@pugetsystems.com

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