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Completely Upgrading a Pre Built HP


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#1 JacobV81

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 11:14 PM

Hey guys thanks for reading. I have an HP a6235x that I have just about completely upgraded. I am still using the same case, DVD drive and original HD as storage -- I will list what I added so you know where I am at, then with my questions. I have added

1 1.5tb seagate and 1 750gb western digital
BFG 9800GT GPU
Antec 430w powertrio
Biostar a760g motherboard
2x2gb 800mhz OCZ RAM
Thermaltake heatsink/processor fan


and have a Phenom II x4 940 on the way this week.

The power supply is fine now but I am wondering if it is a little light for everything plus the quad core?

I might want to change the card to an HD 4870 if you can tell me if it is big enough performance boost over what I have to do it.

Biostar support page shows my board wont support this CPU. Can you recommend a board that will , and be overclock friendly? I don't know how to OC but I would like to read and learn about how to do it.

And last, my PC case. Is there any benefit in buying a new case? Mine seems so short and crowded - I had to remove the HP Media Bay to have a place for the 3rd hard drive.

Thanks a lot

Edited by JacobV81, 22 April 2009 - 11:15 PM.


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#2 DJBPace07

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 02:44 AM

Any time you upgrade an off-the-shelf PC, you have to remember that there might be proprietary connections with the case, power supply, or motherboard. I had to do a double take when you said the Biostar board would not take a Phenom II 940, but you're right. For my computer upgrade, I'm looking at getting the GIGABYTE GA-MA780G-UD3H since it supports the 940 and has two PCI-e slots. If you go for a newer motherboard, faster RAM is suggested. The Gigabyte board will take DDR2-1066 memory like the G.SKILL 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 1066 (PC2 8500) Desktop Memory. I strongly suggest getting a better power supply, such as a 600W or so. This will give you extra headroom for future upgrades. The SILVERSTONE ELEMENT ST65EF 650W or the CORSAIR CMPSU-650TX 650W are good choices from excellent companies. Your case is probably a mid-tower, a full tower ATX case would be a better choice with higher performing graphics cards due to the heat and depth.

Edited by DJBPace07, 23 April 2009 - 02:47 AM.

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#3 fairjoeblue

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 08:55 AM

Since you are upgrading you might want to consider the power supply as one of the first things, not the last.
HP uses rebranded Bestec power supplies.
Bestec power supplies are best known for failing & frying the motherboard in the process.
Failure is usually accelerated by putting ANY additional load on them, [like a video card].

Keep in mind that everything in your computer attacjes to & depends on the power supply one way or another.
A good major upgrade starts with a good power supply.
[Especially if it's a "brand name" computer]

Edited by fairjoeblue, 23 April 2009 - 08:56 AM.

OCZ StealthXstream 700W,Gigabyte GA-EP45-UD3R , E8500, Arctic Freezer Pro 7, 3GB G.Skill PC8500,Gigabyte Radeon HD 4850 OC [1GB ], Seagate 250GB SATA II X2 in RAID 0, Samsung SATA DVD burner.

#4 JacobV81

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 09:30 PM

Thanks for the suggestions. I decided to take my Phenom II 940 and start a new build with it. I am going to return the Power supply and video card I put in my HP and put the stock ones back in.

After that I'm going to look for a nice gaming case on craigslist and start pricing those motherboards and power supplies that were suggested. After that, I should be able to find the remaining parts I need easy enough and cheap.. Thanks for the help and I will be back After I get started.

#5 the_patriot11

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Posted 25 April 2009 - 10:55 PM

if I read his post right hes using an antec PSU not a standard HP one. and those Bestecc PSUs in the HPs are great PSUs-provided you dont use them for anything high end (just use the HP computer for what HP intended you to use it for and you wont have any problems) but I agree-that 430 watt antec PSU is kinda weak, even with the current setup. I would recomend at least a 500 if not a 6-700 watt PSU for that build. :D

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

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#6 JacobV81

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Posted 01 May 2009 - 06:55 PM

Hey thanks for the reply - I am using the antec 430w, not the bestec anymore. I've been flip flopping on how to handle everything and I would like to keep this Antec PowerTrio 430w for the power supply if you guys can tell me it will hold. I play games occasionally, and rarely for more than 30-40 minutes on this PC. I want to just leave this build as it is if it can hold. It came with an ATI HD 2400 video card - I was hoping the upgrade in PSU would offset the upgrade in videocard.

Once I get a new build going with my Phenom II 940, I will take out 2 of the 3 hard drives but leave the 9800GT card in this machine. Thanks guys

#7 the_patriot11

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Posted 02 May 2009 - 12:20 AM

Antec makes good PSUs, but that one will NOT run a 4870. the minimum Power supply rating for a saphire 4870 (If you buy ATI I always recomend purchasing from Saphire or Hitech_ is 500 watts. and even there thats the minimum, under load your going to be stressing that poor PSU out. The lower rated 4670 is probably the best video card you can get that will run with that PSU and even that is going to stress it (400 watt minimum) for that PSU your probably looking at a 3xxx series card ATI wise. If you want a HD 4870, I would recomend probably a 550-750 watt PSU. In fact, I would buy the best PSU you can afford, Ive learned the hard way, dont skimp on the PSU.

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

If I don't reply within 24 hours of your reply, feel free to send me a pm.


#8 JacobV81

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Posted 02 May 2009 - 12:29 AM

Antec makes good PSUs, but that one will NOT run a 4870. the minimum Power supply rating for a saphire 4870 (If you buy ATI I always recomend purchasing from Saphire or Hitech_ is 500 watts. and even there thats the minimum, under load your going to be stressing that poor PSU out. The lower rated 4670 is probably the best video card you can get that will run with that PSU and even that is going to stress it (400 watt minimum) for that PSU your probably looking at a 3xxx series card ATI wise. If you want a HD 4870, I would recomend probably a 550-750 watt PSU. In fact, I would buy the best PSU you can afford, Ive learned the hard way, dont skimp on the PSU.


I'm sorry I meant I would keep it to run my BFG 9800 GT if it can hold up for that. I am looking for a bigger PSU to put in the next build though, I am going to leave the HP alone and start fresh.




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