Need faster CPU

eMachine/W3400
July 19, 2006 at 13:27:14
Specs: Win XP, AMD Athlon 64 3000+/2gig

The post title pretty much says it all. :~}

I'm a newbie here, and this is my first post. I lucked onto this site while ding a search trying to find a faster CPU that's compatable with my motherboard, a Nexgen 3&3LC Mainframe.

I bought this system pretty much explicity for gaming. I've upgraded the RAM as far as it will go with 2 1gig Kingston 184 pin DIMM's, as well as installing an nVidia GeForce 5500 OC video card with 256megs DDR.

I'm having trouble running 2 games, "DOOM 3" and "Quake 4". According to the listed specs for both games, I should have more than enough of everything to run these games quite well. But "D3" runs fairly slow (even on Low Graphics settings) on the higher levels, where there's lots of animation; "Q4" runs even slower, and I haven't been able to progress further than 4 levels due to the slowness of my system.

What I'd like to know is what CPU's my present motherboard will support, and which would be best for my purposes (gaming).

Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated. If yuo think there might be a problem other than my CPU, please inform me of that as well. Thanks you.


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#1
July 19, 2006 at 13:58:26

http://www.emachines.com/support/product_support.html?cat=Desktops&subcat=W-Series&model=W3400

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#2
July 19, 2006 at 14:27:13

"trying to find a faster CPU that's compatable with my motherboard, a Nexgen 3&3LC Mainframe"

1st of all, that's not your motherboard, that's the model of your chassis...your motherboard is an MSI MS-7145 (aka RS480M-IL):

http://www.msicomputer.com/product/p_spec.asp?model=RS480M-IL

Your CPU is fine. Your video card is an outdated piece of crap...hopefully you didn't just buy it? Your motherboard has a PCI-Express x16 slot, take advantage of it!

You need a new video card, NOT a new CPU....


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#3
July 19, 2006 at 16:17:15

"Manufacturer/Model: eMachine/W3400"

Before upgrade to a faster AGP card, also consider buy a better power supply... Most emachines come with el-cheapo 250-350 watt power supply. As far as upgrading CPU goes and without replacing your current graphic card, you won't notice much difference in terms of gaming since your system is bottleneck by your 5500... A nice graphic card that on par up with your A64 3000+ would be either 6600gt/7600gs or x800 series/x1600pro... You may able to get away w/o upgrading power supply with these cards..

TMP-Man

Asus P5P800-SE
P4 506 @ 4200Mhz 1.45v
Thermaltake CLP0024 w/ 1700RPM 92MM + AS5
1GB Corsair 2-3-3-5 DDR400
120GB/300GB 7200RPM HD
MSI 6600GT AGP 550/1150


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Related Solutions

#4
July 19, 2006 at 16:17:44

"Before upgrade to a faster AGP card"

What I meant was PCI-E...

TMP-Man

Asus P5P800-SE
P4 506 @ 4200Mhz 1.45v
Thermaltake CLP0024 w/ 1700RPM 92MM + AS5
1GB Corsair 2-3-3-5 DDR400
120GB/300GB 7200RPM HD
MSI 6600GT AGP 550/1150


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#5
July 19, 2006 at 21:20:58

Thanks for the answers, guys. Unfortunately, my video card is only about 6 months old. At the time I thought it was a pretty good one. I guess I thought wrong. :~}Could you give me the name and model number of a really good video card? I recently saw that the Radeons were getting pretty good reviews.

Thanks again; this site came along just at the right time.


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#6
July 19, 2006 at 21:38:32

See post #3...

"A nice graphic card that on par up with your A64 3000+ would be either 6600gt/7600gs or x800 series/x1600pro... "

TMP-Man

Asus P5P800-SE
P4 506 @ 4200Mhz 1.45v
Thermaltake CLP0024 w/ 1700RPM 92MM + AS5
1GB Corsair 2-3-3-5 DDR400
120GB/300GB 7200RPM HD
MSI 6600GT AGP 550/1150


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#7
July 19, 2006 at 21:41:59

"...my video card is only about 6 months old. At the time I thought it was a pretty good one."

It's a shame you didn't research it a little better.

- the standard PCI slot is dead when it comes to gaming video cards.
- the AGP slot is rapidly dying. There are still decent cards being produced, but the numbers are dwindling.
- the PCI-Express slot is the current slot of choice when it comes to gaming video cards.

Your board has a PCI-E slot, so the 1st thing you need to do is decide how much you're willing to spend. As TMP-Man said, the power supply *may* be an issue. I suggest you open the case & look at the label on the side of the PSU, then post back with the info. It's probably a cheap Bestec unit, but we'd need to know the total wattage & also the amperage for the +12v line(s).


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#8
July 19, 2006 at 22:12:42

TMP Man; sorry, but I didn't understand what the numbers meant. I'm relatively clueless about idivual parts specifications, hence my request for an actual brand name. Sorry for the confusion.

jam, you're exactly right; my power supply IS a Bestec.The model # is: ATX-300-12E REV D If I'm reading it correctly, the 12 volt output is 15 amps, and 300 is the max watts output.

Due to lack of funds I'd like, if at possible, to avoid having to buy a new power supply. But if I do, I'd appreciate it if you could tell me a good unit that won't cost overly much and will allow sufficient power for a new video card.

I've been browsing over some ATI Radeon cards, and the prices run from $70.00 to $500.00 for 256mb cards. If possible I'd prefer to stay in the 100 to 125 dollar range.

Thanks a lot for all your time and expertise in answering my questions. If I would have known about this site earlier i could have save a hundred bucks on my last video card and bought the right one in the first place. :~}


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#9
July 19, 2006 at 22:48:38

Nvidia Geforce 6600Gt or 7600gs
usually priced around ~$90-$130

ATI Radeon x800 or x1600pro
usually priced around ~$100-$150

Look up those at newegg.com

If you want to spend the minimal price, try this below...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814127147R

TMP-Man

Asus P5P800-SE
P4 506 @ 4200Mhz 1.45v
Thermaltake CLP0024 w/ 1700RPM 92MM + AS5
1GB Corsair 2-3-3-5 DDR400
120GB/300GB 7200RPM HD
MSI 6600GT AGP 550/1150


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#10
July 19, 2006 at 23:50:54

TMP-Man; how do feel about the ATI Radeon X1300 Pro PCI Express? Zipzoomfly has them in-stock for $110.00. While browsing this time I found a Radoen video card for $700.00, which is 50% more than I paid for my entire system. I bet it's a nice card, though. :~}

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#11
July 20, 2006 at 05:06:28

"how do feel about the ATI Radeon X1300 Pro PCI Express"

No!

Have a look at this chart & you'll see it's at the bottom of the pile...do NOT waste your money on an x1300 or x1300 Pro:

http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/05/15/graphics_card_buyers_guide_2006_part3/page44.html

You should look for a card that will keep the FPS (frames per second) above a minimum of 25:

http://www.tomshardware.com/2005/12/02/vga_charts_viii/page16.html

TMP-Man suggested several decent cards that are in your price range, plus a refurbed 6600GT for less than $90. Look into them.

As for your power supply, all you can do is try the new card & hope for the best. If your system is unstable, crashes, reboots, etc, remove the new card immediately & go back to the FX5500 until you have enough money (at least $50) for a new PSU. Don't replace it with another cheapie...the PSU is your PC's "lifeblood"


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#12
July 20, 2006 at 14:50:12

jam, those charts you linked to were extremely helpful; they put things into perspective nicely. Between TMP's suggestions and your own, plus the charts, I have lots of browsing and thinking to do.

I like the price of that refurbed card, but I wonder if 128mb would be enough to fuly exploit my system's potential. I like the X1600 as a budget card that looks lie it has good potential; it was listed as being available from zipzoomfly at the first site you linked to.

Again, thanks a lot to both of you for your help.


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#13
July 20, 2006 at 16:07:53

Okay; after ding a bit of research, I've narrowed it down to 3 possibles:

ATI Radeon 1600 Pro w/512mb/PCI-E x16

ATI Radeon 1600XT w/256mb/PCI-E x16

nVidia GeForce 7600 GS w/512mb PCI-E x16

There's actually 5 different "models" of the GeForce card, but they all have the above-listed specs, with different attributes like HDTV versus regular TV-out. Any of the above are within my budget, if just barely. Money-wise I'm leaning towards the 256mb Radeon, but the 512mb Radeon is only $60.00 more, and the nVidias are right in the middle, pricewise.

So it boils down to which card you guys think will work best with my system. If price weren't an issue (and I *could* swing it), the 512mb Radeon looks pretty good. It got good reviews over at Newegg and the reviwers said that it wasn't a power-hog, so I could likely get by with my present PSU.

So I'd appreciate it if you'd let me know which of these you'd buy under the circumstances.


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#14
July 20, 2006 at 16:21:52

Given the choice between the two, take the X1600XT over the PRO. 512MB memory is wasted on either of those cards though...256MB is more than sufficient.

And if you look at these benchtests, you'll see the X1600XT & 7600GS are closely matched, sometimes one is better, sometimes the other...it depends on the benchtest.

http://www.gamepyre.com/reviewsd.html?aid=700&p=5

And I don't know if this will help or not, but here's a table of specs for most of the cards produced over the past few years:

http://www.techpowerup.com/gpudb/


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#15
July 20, 2006 at 22:04:07

jam, that works out about as nicely as i could have hoped for. :~} I was already leaning towards the XT for a cooouple of reasons; it's available from Zipzoomfly, who I already have an account with and is based in California so fast delivery is easy. Plus it's the best price of them all, in addition to getting good marks on the comparison tables.

Thanks a lot for your help, dude.


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