Looking to squeeze a little more outta this ol' girl

Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
So I have a rather old PC, but it's served me well. I've only within the past couple years had any problems playing any games. I don't have enough money for a new rig, but would a new video card squeeze a couple of more years out of it? I'm currently using a Nvidia 8600 GT 128Mb. So yeah, old and dusty. 2 gigs of cheap Ram, and an old AMD 3200+ Sempron processor that performs at about 3Ghz. I'm looking for something cheap that'll let me play recent games at modest settings. Not looking for something to totally blow it all away. Just something that makes it playable without making it look like dog barf would be nice. A cheap PCI-E card is what I need.

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  • chr1sh4ll3ttb3chr1sh4ll3ttb3 A dagger in the dark is worth a thousand swords in the morningRegistered User regular
    Your processor is not going to be doing you any favours, but something like this will eat your old card for breakfast...

  • TefTef Registered User regular
    An AMD 5670 would be a good buy too. You could pick one up for around $60-$70.

    Your CPU will be your bottleneck here, but you know that already. Start savin' those pennies!

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  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    Yeah, I'm well aware of how rough my CPU is. ;P That card looks promising. How much of a peformance boost could I expect with my processor as old as it is with it?

  • TefTef Registered User regular
    Man without actually benchmarking your specific setup, I couldn't tell you. What I will say is you'll definitely see an increase in performance but when it starts stuttering and stalling, you'll know it's got to do with your cpu and maybe your RAM.

    In terms of build plan, save some cash and then pick up whatever the new hotness is in terms of CPU and equivalent mobo and definitely a RAM upgrade. Unless you're gonna be saving your CPU/MBO as your gaming build for quite some time, don't bother about upgrading your RAM right now

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  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    I would suggest:

    5670: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150535
    6670: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102952
    6770: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150540

    Personally I think the 6770 is the best price/performance, but pick what fits your budget.

    As for how well you'll do with newer games, depends on what games. The 6770 would work well if you later decide to do a $200 AMD update (cpu/ram/mobo).

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  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    Hm, that 6770 is pretty tempting. Any other other opinions on it?

  • SmokeStacksSmokeStacks The Myth, the Legend, the Bowman, the Shambler FuckerRegistered User regular
    The Sempron 3200+ is a single core 1.8GHz CPU that is performance rated at 3.2GHz, so any of these cards will be extreme overkill.

    Depending on your socket, you may be able to find a cheap CPU upgrade. A $50 Athlon 64x2 CPU and a $50 video card are going to do you more good than just buying a $100 video card.

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  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    Hm, I've never installed a CPU before. Is it idiot proof like installing video cards and RAM?

  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    edited September 2011
    Hmm what socket do you have? Get your motherboard model. You could have AM2 or socket 939, and depending on that you need a processor that fits.

    Also a 5570 is the absolute rock bottom choice for buying a card that can play games. It really won't be THAT much better than your current card.

    tsmvengy on
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  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    Hm. Well, it isn't worth it then. I'll stick with either the 6670 or the 6770. Looking at the 6770, that fan looks ginormous. I hope it'll fit in my case.

  • chr1sh4ll3ttb3chr1sh4ll3ttb3 A dagger in the dark is worth a thousand swords in the morningRegistered User regular
    That's kind of a waste of money, though. It's too much card for now, and if you were thinking you could carry it over into a new build if you upgrade reasonably soon, it's not enough card then.

  • SmokeStacksSmokeStacks The Myth, the Legend, the Bowman, the Shambler FuckerRegistered User regular
    Hm, I've never installed a CPU before. Is it idiot proof like installing video cards and RAM?

    More or less. You have to apply thermal paste and mount a heatsink and fan, but it's easy as long as you follow the instructions.

    If you download a program like PCWizard or CPU-Z it'll tell you what model motherboard you have, and what socket it is. From there you can see which CPUs your mobo supports, and then look around to see if you can find an upgrade.

    It'll either be Socket 939 or Socket AM2. Both are pretty old, and finding replacement CPUs will be hard, but if you can get ahold of one you'll see a significant increase over the CPU you have now.

    The other plan is instead of spending $100 or more on a new CPU and GPU, you simply save up more money and build yourself a new budget system. If you use the case, hard drive, and optical drive from your current PC, $300 can go a long way, and a budget PC can still run quite a few newer games, albeit at lower settings.

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  • TefTef Registered User regular
    I based my 5670 recommendation on the assumption that you needed a new GPU now. If you can wait to save up some cash as per smoke stack's recommendation, then do that. It really comes down to how long you need to save the cash and if you're current rig is bearable til then.

    Considering you want to save cash I would recommend against a 6670. They're just a rebadged 5670 (ie same architecture) and the increase in fps is not worth the price increase in your particular case.

    What's your screen resolution OP? That will effect your performance to a fair degree (ie higher resolution is more demanding on your system)

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  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited September 2011
    Yeah, I need another GPU now. I usually play at 1280x1024. Of course I could always go back down to 1024x780, and I actually decided on getting the 6770 after all.

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  • EshEsh Tending bar. FFXIV. Motorcycles. Portland, ORRegistered User regular
    Yeah, I need another GPU now. I usually play at 1280x1024. Of course I could always go back down to 1024x780, and I actually decided on getting the 6770 after all.

    There's going to be no noticeable difference performance wise between those two resolutions.

  • tsmvengytsmvengy Registered User regular
    If you haven't clicked the "buy" button yet, here's a good deal:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814102873&nm_mc=EMC-IGNEFL093011A&cm_mmc=EMC-IGNEFL093011A-_-EMC-093011-Index-_-DesktopGraphicsVideoCards-_-14102873-L0B

    The 5770 is the same card as the 6770. $90 after rebate.

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  • Gigazombie CybermageGigazombie Cybermage Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    Well crap, I already bought the other one yesterday. ;P

  • EliminationElimination Registered User regular
    edited October 2011
    Hm. Well, it isn't worth it then. I'll stick with either the 6670 or the 6770. Looking at the 6770, that fan looks ginormous. I hope it'll fit in my case.

    None of the video cards posted here will make a big difference for you. If you really must must must have a new card. Go onto ebay or something and buy a cheap GTX 260, or 9800, from ATI even a 4850 or something like that. You can probably get those for as low as $50 from someone. It really isn't worth paying out $100+ when your CPU is going to hardcore bottleneck anything thats been released in the past 5-6 years.

    Elimination on
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