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need help upgrading older computer for games 100-150$


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#1 Sacrifice

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 05:23 PM

Pretty inexperienced wanting to upgrade my computer a bit for gaming, a friend of mine is suggesting to me to add more RAM, upgrade GPU, and invest in an SSD.

 

I don't know if the CPU can be upgraded or not I don't know how to tell what to buy really. If you amazing people here on these forums could help me find what would be good purchases for this older 06 computer so I don't buy the wrong thing that won't work or is overpriced I would greatly appreciate.

 

I'm looking to get whatever things will give the biggest impact, I do think RAM would probably be true to being an important upgrade as the task manager performance tab shows i'm using 2.06GB right now just with my 10 chrome tabs open. I assume a GPU would be the biggest upgrade no?

 

Also if anyone can recommend a quality, quantity, good priced thermal paste.

 

Thanks in advance to anyone who replies for your time.

 

Specs:

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit SP1

Intel Pentium Dual CPU E2180 @ 2.00GHz

3072MB RAM

NVIDIA GeForce 7600 GT

 

My exact computer:

https://support.hp.com/us-en/document/c01287561

 

Speccy:

http://speccy.piriform.com/results/zxHJ7Q6HaYEClOwCYyKXI1F



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#2 donisonleague

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 05:36 PM

About thermal paste: MX-4 is what they used to suggest here, which is pretty cheap if i remember correctly.

 

About the upgrade, the PC is clearly pretty old and it's hard to get a worth upgrade if you aim to gaming.

May i ask what games are you aiming to be able to play?

 

My personal suggestion would be to save some money and postpone the upgrade.

Nothing you could buy will likely improve the system enough for intensive gaming, and you would need to start over.



#3 mikey11

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 05:49 PM

 a friend of mine is suggesting to me to add more RAM, upgrade GPU, and invest in an SSD.

 

 

none of that would really help much with a 2.00 processor.....a waste of money in my opinion

 

save your money for a new case, motherboard and ram when you can afford it.....then re-use your GPU and hard drive for the time being


Edited by mikey11, 04 July 2018 - 05:51 PM.


#4 Sacrifice

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 06:27 PM

 

League of Legends mostly I can already play it fine i'm just looking to make it run a bit better with maybe a bit more FPS not really looking for "intensive gaming" i'm assuming you mean newer games I mostly play older games. 

I may build a computer from scratch in the future but for now i'm just looking to upgrade this one as I can.

 

 

 

 

Is it not possible to upgrade the processor?

I may build a new computer in the future but I just wanted to upgrade this one for the time being.


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:23 AM.


#5 donisonleague

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 07:08 PM

It's hard to upgrade the CPU, since the MOBO is a LGA775.

My suggestion is still to wait, since any money here is likely a waste and you'd be better in spending 300-400$ for a new build.

 

Anyway, if you insist in upgrading, i could suggest a Core 2 Duo E7500 which is currently at a ridicolous price at amazon (4$ - new) and is better than your pentium.

Another upgrade could be buying another 2GB of DDR2 ram for 20$ like this: https://pcpartpicker.com/product/djMFf7/crucial-memory-ct25664aa1067 (you cannot go higher than 4gb)

Another upgrade which you could keep in your hypotetical future build, is a SSD. You could buy a 250GB one for about 50$ (example: https://pcpartpicker.com/product/8jH48d/sandisk-ssd-plus-240gb-25-solid-state-drive-sdssda-240g-g26)

You could also buy a 128GB one for much less, but it would be the only purchase which wouldn't be a waste in a future build, so i'd go for 250.

 

Another option is to pick a GTX1050 for less than 150$. Imo, your GPU is the less problematic point, with CPU being the main. But it is also true that you could keep your new GPU in a new build, ALTHOUGH a GTX1050 isn't really that good, and buying it would likely be classified as a waste of money.

You could also buy a dedicated GPU like GT710 for 40$, which would be an improvement over your integrated, but the GT710 is rubbish for a future new build.

 

If you decide to go forward with the upgrades i'd spend those 75$. I'd avoid the GT710, but with that too you'd get 115$.

I've to reiterate that imo the best thing to do is to save another 150-250$ and build a new system from scratch

You haven't said anything about the PSU though, which would be nice to know before giving out suggestions.

 

EDIT: Also, i don't know where are you from and which vendors you can access


Edited by donisonleague, 04 July 2018 - 07:12 PM.


#6 Sacrifice

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 07:34 PM

 

thank you I appreciate your concern and totally understand your point

 

Since you say my CPU is the main problem would a Core 2 Duo E7500 be the best upgrade possible for this computer ?

Edit: Did some research but I want to understand which one of these is better, i'm assuming the quad core but i'm not really sure

 

Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650 Processor 3.0 GHz 12 MB Cache Socket LGA775:

https://www.amazon.com/Intel-Q9650-Processor-Socket-LGA775/dp/B001D86S3G/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_2?m=A3R2SJ6OXUDNDY&s=merchant-items&ie=UTF8&qid=1530757380&sr=1-2-fkmr0&keywords=Intel+Core+2+Quad+Q

Intel Core 2 Duo E8600 3.33GHz 6M L2 Cache 1333MHz LGA775 Desktop Processor:

https://www.amazon.com/Intel-3-33GHz-1333MHz-Desktop-Processor/dp/B001BS1ONW/ref=sr_1_14?m=A3GYTO735I3GV6&s=merchant-items&ie=UTF8&qid=1530755772&sr=1-14&keywords=LGA775

 

So for the RAM DDR2 is the best this computer can use? If you don't mind i'm also curious to learn how you knew I could only use 4GB?

 

I'll likely pick up the SSD and a GPU

 

Which one of these is the best? How do you tell what GPU is better than others? Just core clock and memory clock?

GTX1050:

https://www.newfrog.com/product/gtx1050-2gb-ddr5-128bit-pci-e-gaming-video-graphics-card-for-nvidia-geforce-208389?currency=USD&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIqovu9diG3AIVibrACh2stAEsEAQYAiABEgIMvfD_BwE

 

GTX 1050 2GB DDR5 128Bit :

https://www.newfrog.com/product/gtx-1050-2gb-ddr5-128bit-vga-dvi-hdmi-graphics-card-for-nvidia-geforce-205625?currency=USD&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI08u-35WH3AIVjLXACh2XcwFNEAQYASABEgIhLvD_BwE

Asus GTX-750TI-OC-2GB:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Asus-GTX-750TI-OC-2GB-GTX750TI-GTX-750TI-750-2G-D5-DDR5-128-Bit-PC-Desktop/32868223830.html?spm=2114.search0302.3.203.533c4b57yu0baP&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_0_10130_10152_10151_10618_10059_10696_10084_100031_10083_10547_10624_10546_10623_10307_10548_524_10341_10065_10340_10068_10343_10342_10103_10620_10344_10325_10545_10622_10324_10621,searchweb201603_0,ppcSwitch_0&algo_pvid=2acaca74-bf2e-4f2d-bfe7-b785c37e64d3&algo_expid=2acaca74-bf2e-4f2d-bfe7-b785c37e64d3-25

GTX 750 Ti 2GB 128Bit:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/GIGABYTE-Graphics-Card-Original-GTX-750-Ti-2GB-128Bit-GDDR5-Video-Cards-for-nVIDIA-Geforce-GTX/32852909048.html?spm=2114.search0302.3.43.533c4b57yu0baP&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_0_10130_10152_10151_10618_10059_10696_10084_100031_10083_10547_10624_10546_10623_10307_10548_524_10341_10065_10340_10068_10343_10342_10103_10620_10344_10325_10545_10622_10324_10621,searchweb201603_0,ppcSwitch_0&algo_pvid=2acaca74-bf2e-4f2d-bfe7-b785c37e64d3&algo_expid=2acaca74-bf2e-4f2d-bfe7-b785c37e64d3-5

 

Edit: I'm from USA.

 

It's a 250W PSU is there anything else about the PSU I need to tell you?


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:25 AM.


#7 MadmanRB

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 09:58 PM

Yeah sadly for such an old machine there isn't much you can do for it especially if it's older pre-built and you really don't know what's compatible with it or not it may be better off for you to save up some more money and get a brand new computer as any investment right now I would say is a big waste of money especially for games like League of Legends only going to get worse just save your hard drive if it's possible and save up some money for a brand new machine.

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#8 Sacrifice

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 10:13 PM

Oh I agree but for now this is definitely the best option for me.  Plus I would like to fix it up just to keep it around for low end gaming and simple browsing.


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:25 AM.


#9 MadmanRB

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Posted 04 July 2018 - 10:20 PM

True, well given the few options you have i would say a SSD is a good investment as it will be one of the few parts you can carry over to a newer machine.

After all memory standards have changed as have CPU's

A SSD will still be able to use SATA which is still quite common on modern hardware

The only caveat is that you will probably need one of these things to make it fit in:

 

https://www.amazon.com/2-5-inch-Drive-3-5-inch-Plastic-Adapter/dp/B0061GEORW

 

Luckily these are cheap and easy to work with so no loss if you decide to leave it behind if you get a new machine


Edited by MadmanRB, 04 July 2018 - 10:21 PM.

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#10 donisonleague

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 03:22 AM

Since you're steady on your position i'll simply go on and help you upgrade, without reiterating anymore my stance.

 

 

 

E7500 is not the absolute best you can buy, but imo, in the perspective of upgrading the whole system with a 100-150$ budget, it would be a nice upgrade for almost 0 money. If you wish to go over your budget of a bit, then the Q9650 is the best between the two. I'd stick with the E7500 though, since in a future perspective, you'd need to throw away both of them. It would be more wise to invest your budget in upgrades you could keep.

 

DDR2 is the memory your mobo uses, i've referred to the link you first posted here: https://support.hp.com/us-en/document/c01287561

I don't know what type of memory you're currently using, since speccy says DDR2-333 but your hp link says another thing. Anyway, it's DDR2 100%, but you may want to further look into this, to avoid buying another ram stick you can't use along with yours.

4 GB is the maximum you can get, as usual for old mobo. I've found out looking for your mobo specs from the link you gave us: https://support.hp.com/us-en/document/c01357119

 

If you're going to add a dedicated GPU, even if it's a GT710, you may want to look for a new PSU, since yours it's a (very) old 250W with no certification, which could likely fail soon. PSU is another thing you could transfer to your new build in the future, so i would go for it.

There is a good deal on this good PSU: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1001257-REG/evga_100_b1_0500_kr_500w_80plus_bronze_power.html

which basically will make it cost 19.99$ with free shipping

 

This is the overall upgrade: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/RxMwq4

Cost: 124$

If you wish to spend the full budget, i'd upgrade the SSD and go for a 480GB one, which is currently around 30$ more.

In that project there are 2 RAM sticks, since i don't know what's your ram, except for the fact that is a DDR2. If it turns out to be DDR2 800, you'd need only one, otherwise, for 10$, i'd say buy both sticks.

 

EDIT: I don't know about investing the budget for a 1050 or a 750TI. They're both huge improvement over your system, but you need to buy a new PSU for both and with your cpu, even with the 7500, you risk to bottleneck it.

EDIT2: I've seen you've found good deals for the 1050, in that case it's worth to upgrade.


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:27 AM.


#11 Sacrifice

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 11:49 AM

Yeah the q9650 is a bit over the price but since you guys are saying thats the biggest issue the CPU i've found one for 40$ im sure its overpriced a bit but i also plan on keeping this computer in the long run.

 

Ah so it's in compatible with higher memory? Also it says "32 bit pcs" I have upgraded to 64 bit if this changes anything...For example if I bought a 4GB 240 pin DDR3 or even DDR2 it just wouldnt register ?  Also I noted on the website it says the highest supported DIMM type is PC2-6400 (800MHz)

So would this work? since it's PC2-8500 1066 MHz

https://starmicroinc.net/crucial-2gb-ddr2-1066mhz-pc2-8500-240-pin-non-ecc-unbuffered-dimm-desktop-memory-ct25664aa1067/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI7LKMlamH3AIVhbXACh3RjghvEAQYAiABEgLD2fD_BwE

 

How do you know how much power a card requires? Are you assuming because its old and low 250W ? Would it 100% fail quickly if I tried running a new card on it ? Could I try to go without it and then buy it if I have a problem later or can something bad happen? I don't plan on transferring the parts out of this pc. 

 

Are larger SSD faster ? Or all SSD are the same speed? 

 

I see you changed the RAM in that build to PC2-6400, yes I only need one

 

which one do you think is better out of those cards? I don't know how to tell honestly what makes one card better than another?


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:29 AM.


#12 jonuk76

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 02:31 PM

 

Ah so it's in compatible with higher memory? Also it says "32 bit pcs" I have upgraded to 64 bit if this changes anything...For example if I bought a 4GB 240 pin DDR3 or even DDR2 it just wouldnt register ?  Also I noted on the website it says the highest supported DIMM type is PC2-6400 (800MHz)

So would this work? since it's PC2-8500 1066 MHz

https://starmicroinc.net/crucial-2gb-ddr2-1066mhz-pc2-8500-240-pin-non-ecc-unbuffered-dimm-desktop-memory-ct25664aa1067/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI7LKMlamH3AIVhbXACh3RjghvEAQYAiABEgLD2fD_BwE

 

How do you know how much power a card requires? Are you assuming because its old and low 250W ? Would it 100% fail quickly if I tried running a new card on it ? Could I try to go without it and then buy it if I have a problem later or can something bad happen? I don't plan on transferring the parts out of this pc. 

 

 

1) It's only compatible with DDR2.  DDR3 is both electrically and physically incompatible.  The most it will take is 2 x 2 Gb DDR2 modules.  Faster DDR2 RAM like you have linked to will probably work but will run at a lower speed.

 

2) Sites like PC Partpicker estimate power consumption of a given card.  It's also often given in the manufacturer specs.  Cards which are purely powered by the PCIe slot have a maximum allowable power draw of 75 watts under the PCIe specifications.  Higher power GPU's need one or more special 12v connections from the power supply and can pull upwards of 300 watts for high spec ones. Power supplies degrade over time, for example as capacitors dry out.  At 10 or more years old, a failure is pretty likely, but it depends on use - for example, if the system has been used for a couple of hours every other day, it will have had an easier life than one that's been powered up for 18 hours a day for 10 years.  Well designed ones shouldn't cause additional damage when they do fail, but whenever something "blows" there is a risk it will take other components with it.  


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#13 donisonleague

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 02:47 PM


 

 

>Imho spending that much on a 775 CPU would be too much of a waste. I'd go for the 7500 which is the best improvement/price solution.

Especially if it's just League and Browsing.

 

>SSD may have different speeds, but it's more up to which one is newer. Large or small doesn't make any difference, and anyway it's an HUGE improvement over HDD, even if you buy the oldest SSD ever built.

 

>For the RAM, you cannot buy higher than supported, so you have to stick with DDR2 and in your case 800MHz 240pin

 

>For the PSU, probably you would be fine with the GT710.

GTX1050 requires autonomous A/C which shouldn't be provided by your standard PSU, since the original build came without a dedicated GPU.

Anyway, 250W is really low and considering it's 99.99% not certified and old, i highly doubt it's currently providing more than 180W, which is far too risky.

A new PSU would be a good upgrade.

 

>For the GPU: personally i've had GTX750TI for about an year and an half and for me it has been an astonishing upgrade at the time. That card was awesome.

If you can find them at the same price though, 1050 is newer and better.


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:32 AM.


#14 Sacrifice

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 03:13 PM

 

1) It's only compatible with DDR2.  DDR3 is both electrically and physically incompatible.  The most it will take is 2 x 2 Gb DDR2 modules.  Faster DDR2 RAM like you have linked to will probably work but will run at a lower speed.

 

2) Sites like PC Partpicker estimate power consumption of a given card.  It's also often given in the manufacturer specs.  Cards which are purely powered by the PCIe slot have a maximum allowable power draw of 75 watts under the PCIe specifications.  Higher power GPU's need one or more special 12v connections from the power supply and can pull upwards of 300 watts for high spec ones. Power supplies degrade over time, for example as capacitors dry out.  At 10 or more years old, a failure is pretty likely, but it depends on use - for example, if the system has been used for a couple of hours every other day, it will have had an easier life than one that's been powered up for 18 hours a day for 10 years.  Well designed ones shouldn't cause additional damage when they do fail, but whenever something "blows" there is a risk it will take other components with it.  

 

 

Hmm okay good to know 

 

I kinda figured more ... 'mainstream' sort of websites wouldn't have the cards im looking at listed as it seems to be a lot of foreign/knockoff/chinese type stuff that i've linked.  Hmm alright i'll upgrade the power supply then in that case it hasn't been used a LOT I would say theres been literal years this computer has just been collecting dust.  The PSU inside is very dusty though and I didn't attempt taking it apart or trying to get inside of it.

 

 

>Imho spending that much on a 775 CPU would be too much of a waste. I'd go for the 7500 which is the best improvement/price solution.

Especially if it's just League and Browsing.

 

>SSD may have different speeds, but it's more up to which one is newer. Large or small doesn't make any difference, and anyway it's an HUGE improvement over HDD, even if you buy the oldest SSD ever built.

 

>For the RAM, you cannot buy higher than supported, so you have to stick with DDR2 and in your case 800MHz 240pin

 

>For the PSU, probably you would be fine with the GT710.

GTX1050 requires autonomous A/C which shouldn't be provided by your standard PSU, since the original build came without a dedicated GPU.

Anyway, 250W is really low and considering it's 99.99% not certified and old, i highly doubt it's currently providing more than 180W, which is far too risky.

A new PSU would be a good upgrade.

 

>For the GPU: personally i've had GTX750TI for about an year and an half and for me it has been an astonishing upgrade at the time. That card was awesome.

If you can find them at the same price though, 1050 is newer and better.

 

 

What about the GTX750TI (im assuming this isnt an original asus)

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Asus-GTX-750TI-OC-2GB-GTX750TI-GTX-750TI-750-2G-D5-DDR5-128-Bit-PC-Desktop/32868223830.html?spm=2114.search0302.3.203.533c4b57yu0baP&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_0_10130_10152_10151_10618_10059_10696_10084_100031_10083_10547_10624_10546_10623_10307_10548_524_10341_10065_10340_10068_10343_10342_10103_10620_10344_10325_10545_10622_10324_10621,searchweb201603_0,ppcSwitch_0&algo_pvid=2acaca74-bf2e-4f2d-bfe7-b785c37e64d3&algo_expid=2acaca74-bf2e-4f2d-bfe7-b785c37e64d3-25

 

is there good chances this will work in my machine or do you think i should really stray away from this and go for the GT710?  It's much newer in terms of PCIe 3.0 and i'm pretty sure my motherboard is PCIe 1.0 ... hmm... I really like this card but i'm not sure maybe its a bad decision.  Also i'm not sure if its a foreign knockoff card itself.

 

also i'm very skeptical about picking up the GT710 you recommended because i'm not really sure how to tell what card is better than what is it just because it gets a higher core clock speed of 950 to the 580 my current one gets?

https://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?name=ZT-710G1LP&c=CJ

 

My card EVGA 7600 GT

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130017

 

Yes, I will go with a new PSU 100% the one you linked me is a great deal.  I'm just a bit sketch of installing a new PSU cause can't the old one hold power still after unplugged?  Yeah i'm not gonna go for those GTX1050 cards I linked they're both very chinese knockoff and i've read some bad things about them.  At this point my only decision i'm trying to make is which GPU to choose the GTX750TI I linked or the GT710 you linked.

 

Also what about cooling, the GT710 does not have a fan, it is not needed? Do you think I need to add any additional cooling to my system? Could you possibly recommend anything in that catagory? I currently have to use SpeedFan program to turn my fan speeds on 100% which only keeps my gpu temp around 50-70 when gaming or my GPU will overheat, my computer will freeze up a bit and sometimes bluescreen power off if I do not have fan speeds on 100%.  Currently I have PSU, GPU, CPU, and one case fan, 4 total.

 

The PSU 

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1001257-REG/evga_100_b1_0500_kr_500w_80plus_bronze_power.html

 

has the fan on top, the PSU in my case right now has the fan on the back because it's in the top of the case, doesn't this mean the PSU needs to be in the bottom of the case?

 

I'm thinking this would be a better option so I don't have to attempt to rearrange my whole inside of my case, it may not even be possible since the bottom part of my case is solid metal backing.

 

https://www.outletpc.com/tc6561.html?gclid=CjwKCAjwg_fZBRAoEiwAppvp-bmMAusn5XmtXKEiTttpwOAfGVwYL2PFkHeIRt0MoUKxH_dADVm2_xoCsIAQAvD_BwE


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:36 AM.


#15 donisonleague

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 04:34 PM

>PCIe is backward compatible, so you won't have any problem. Also the GT710 is 2.0

 

>GT710 although not being a top notch card, has been once. It's miles ahead of your current GPU: 1GB of dedicated RAM, way higher clock, supports up to DirectX 12.0 (whilst your current supports only 9.0)

GTX750TI is an huge improvement over GT710, so here is simply your pick. Probably GTX750TI could be held for some more years with some good usage possibilities, whilst GT710 have no chance in terms of new AAA games.

3 years ago or so i was playing Planetside 2 in full Ultra with the GTX750TI, and it was huge resource demanding.

 

>Additional cooling is always better and you can afford to charge more the PSU since you're buying a new one (once again, one more reason to do it).

Do you mind uploading a couple of pictures of the inside of your case? HP specs don't elaborate much on the case and i cannot understand how many fans could you set.

If your case can't be adapted to new cooling, you may even consider buying a new case for 30$ or so, especially if you save some money with GT710, in that case you should stay under the original budget.

GT710 may heat a bit while playing LoL for prolonged times, but LoL graphics ain't improve much and i doubt it will really overheat.

 

>PSU: same thing about the fans, a new case might be good also for this, but i'm saying this just since i don't know anything about your current case.

This: https://pcpartpicker.com/product/rXQypg/antec-power-supply-ea380dgreen has rear fans, and it should be as good as the one i've posted before.

Yours is fine, but it isn't certified, so i'd prefer to stick with the evga on sale - and maybe change the case if it's not compatible - or to go with the Antec for some more money.

 

EDIT: https://pcpartpicker.com/user/donisonleague/saved/gNxZ8d

This could be the final looking for example, 141$.

If you switch the GT710 for the GTX750TI you would go over budget, but just a little bit, so it may be really worth if you decide to.


Edited by hamluis, 15 July 2018 - 10:38 AM.





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