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Computer Makeover!


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6 replies to this topic

#1 RockerBug17

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 12:31 PM

I've been using my HP m7160n for over 5 years now. With only one hardware malfunction (power supply) I've come to love this solidly built machine. But now, I am ready to expand upon this machine and take it to the next level. I've been getting into the nitty-gritty of CPUs, RAM, HDD and GPUs to find the best upgrades possible. My top picks are as follows:

Intel Core2 Extreme (still debating model)
4GB of DDR2-400 or higher?
500GB Seagate Momentous XT HDD
Any solid GPU

I'm looking for any advice one hardware for upgrading my HP m7160n. What CPU, RAM, HDD, or GPU would you personally pick? I do a lot of music recording and sampling and would like to improve those functions, as well as start video editing and capturing.

Edited by RockerBug17, 05 October 2010 - 01:17 PM.


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#2 dc3

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 02:41 PM

You are asking to upgrade your Compaq, but list parts that won't work with the motherboard in that computer.

Are you intending on purchasing another motherboard to upgrade with. If you are, then you should be aware that the motherboard is a micro ATX form factor. This will limit what motherboards you can use.

It always seems to come down to this... how much do you have in your budget for this? Once we know what your budget is, we can help with suggestions that will get you the best bang for the buck.

You haven't listed an operating system, I would suggest the 64-bit Windows 7. With a 64-bit operating system you can use as much RAM as the motherboard will support. And if you are going to be doing video editing then more RAM is always useful.

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#3 RockerBug17

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 07:02 PM

According to the link I provided my MOBO is an ASUS P5LP-LE. The processor slot is an LGA775, which should fit most Core2 Extreme. The RAM is DDR2-400, which I know the MOBO supports because that's what is currently installed; I just want to max it out to 4GBs. As far as the HDD and GPU are concerned I'm not sure if the parts I was looking at are compatible. Am I wrong about my MOBO being a ASUS P5LP-LE?

#4 dpunisher

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 07:12 PM

That board doesn't support any more than a Core 2 E6700. You have to remember you are running an old 945 chipset. Just because the CPU might fit the socket, doesn't mean the CPU will work. Figure also your RAM at 400 is a limiting factor as well, you will likely need 4 new sticks to run with a CPU with a 1066 FSB. The fastest Core 2 with an 800 FSB is an E4700, and not really worth the money for the performance upgrade. I don't like being negative, but this is not a system to throw any upgrades at. It has served well, and been reliable. Any upgrades you make are a dead end (excepting video card/hard drive), that cannot be carried forward to another build.

If you need something appreciably faster, it might be time to consider a new build/system with modern components.

Edited by dpunisher, 05 October 2010 - 07:14 PM.

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#5 dc3

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 07:14 PM

No, that's your motherboard.

I was under the impression that you wanted to upgrade the motherboard as well.

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#6 RockerBug17

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 11:30 PM

Ahh, I should have known no manufacturer would make it that easy to upgrade. Guess I'll just wait until I've got the fund for a Titanus Workstation. In the mean time, where can I learn more about upgrading and compatibility (like the chipset issue I was unaware of) and would it be a good idea/is it possible to go ahead and purchase the HDD/SSD I want to use in my next system and install my programs and OS using my current system, and install the drive in the new system at a later time?

#7 dc3

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 11:54 PM

If you are going to purchase a Titanus Workstation it will come with a Windows operating system, I would suspect at this time that it would be Windows7. This will already be installed on what ever kind of hdd they are using at the time, SATA or SSD. You could purchase another hdd if you need more storage space, or just wish to back up your important files. As long as this hdd doesn't have a Windows operating system installed on it you should be able to plug it into your new machine and access your data.

There's a problem with moving a hdd with a Windows operating system install on it from the computer it was installed in when the operating system was loaded. If a hard drive is moved to a new computer, the registry entries and drivers for the mass storage controller hardware on the new motherboard are not installed in Windows for the new computer and you may not be able to start Windows.

As expensive as SSD are at the moment I would hold off for a while. If you haven't looked at prices, check out the prices at Newegg.

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