1. #1

    Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Im running the following specs:

    processor = AMD Athlon 64 3800+ 2.41 ghz (I built this computer a long time ago, I had no idea what 32 vs 64 was I assumed bigger was better but I'm running a 32 bit operating system due to driver conflicts with 64 bit windows)

    ram = 1 gig DDR2 dual channel (I have 2 extra dimms, can I put a matched pair of 2gigs in these extra slots of a different make and brand? I heard 3 gigs is all you can put on a 32 bit system)

    video = Geforce 8600 GT


    I experience a bunch of lag when running complex UI setups with lots of active components (like power auras with many many many effects to show debuffs on me, on targets, cooldowns, ect) especially in densely populated areas. Outside of Dal in normal BGs and whatnot, it runs smooth enough with graphics turned down, starts to get a little chop when turning graphics up, and gets a ton of chop (and huge load times) no matter the graphics settings when I go into Dal or enter a densely populated zone (Isle of Conquest or Wintergrasp).

    Basically, I can't tell if it is a weak Graphics card, Memory, or even processor, or some combination of the above. Thanks for the help.

  2. #2

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Sounds like a combination of RAM, and CPU. The 8600GT should be fine as long as there's no overheating. You'll be able to put any ram in as long as it's the same speed and voltage (The motherboard may automatically change these so it will boot). The CPU I'm not sure about but the way you've described your problems makes me think that it may be hurting your performance. Honestly I wouldn't even try gaming in Vista with only 1gb of memory, Vista should be eating probably 50 - 60% of that without anything else.
    Errors using inadequate data are much less than those using no data at all. - Charles Babbage

  3. #3
    not good with computers
    chaud's Avatar
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    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    All of it. Don't waste any more money on that system.

  4. #4

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by chaud
    All of it. Don't waste any more money on that system.
    +1
    I would suggest you save the money you are planning to use to upgrade, and just buy a whole new system. You can get a decent one for not much if you are going to build it yourself.

  5. #5

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by None
    Sounds like a combination of RAM, and CPU. The 8600GT should be fine as long as there's no overheating. You'll be able to put any ram in as long as it's the same speed and voltage (The motherboard may automatically change these so it will boot). The CPU I'm not sure about but the way you've described your problems makes me think that it may be hurting your performance. Honestly I wouldn't even try gaming in Vista with only 1gb of memory, Vista should be eating probably 50 - 60% of that without anything else.
    I'm running XP because I hate vista and don't want to spend the cash on 7. My setup runs WoW pretty well except in dense areas with lots of players. I've never had trouble with raiding or anything only problem is chop with tons of mods in thick pvp areas. Thanks for the advice though, I kind of figured it might be a combination of a shit CPU and RAM I was just hoping that the CPU would not be the weak point because I'm short on funds. I'll look into that though, thank you.

    All of it. Don't waste any more money on that system.
    I am a college student and I don't have the luxury of living off of my parents for the rest of my life in their basement.

    I don't use this computer for anything but word processing and WoW, it doesn't need to run top notch games. If I really have to scrap the entire thing and build a new rig, any suggested pieces? I really do not have 1k to drop on it, I would like to be able to spend 400 and be able to handle the new expansion without too much chop I don't care about running at max resolution and whatnot just enough to make it pretty and smooth. What kind of pieces should I be looking at if I'm going to make a new rig?

  6. #6

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    CPU: AMD Athlon II x4 630 @ 2.8Ghz
    Motherboard: Asrock M3A770DE
    Video Card: Sapphire HD 4850
    RAM: G.Skill 2x2gb CAS9
    Power Supply: Silverstone 400w
    Case: Silverstone PS02B
    Hard drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3
    Total cost: $506.94 - $35 in rebates: $471.94

    That's about as cheap as it gets. I seriously can't find anything cheaper; combos don't even apply to components at prices like this. Putting an extra $100 into the budget would completely change it.

    $600:
    CPU: AMD Phenom II x4 955 @ 3.2ghz
    Motherboard: Asrock M3A770DE
    Video Card: Powercolor 5770 1gb
    RAM: G.Skill 2x2gb CAS7
    Power Supply: Silverstone 400w
    Case: Silverstone PS02B
    Hard drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3
    Total cost: $621.93
    Total after rebates: $593.93

    Honestly, if you can live with it for a bit longer and save up about $800 you'll get a far better computer. An $800 build will be miles ahead of these two builds without cutting corners.
    Errors using inadequate data are much less than those using no data at all. - Charles Babbage

  7. #7
    Herald of the Titans
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    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    If you are looking for better performance in raids then upgrade the CPU, mobo and RAM first. If all you do is WoW, then a faster CPU will benefit you the most. Your graphics card is old, but not that ancient, it will still run WoW reasonably well as long as you have a fast CPU and run at low graphic settings.

    It will probably cost you around $200-250 bucks, might have to invest $50 in a new PSU as well, but you probably shouldn't have to do that until you upgrade your graphics card.

    If your budget is $400 then you could upgrade your CPU, RAM, motherboard, graphics card and PSU. You can use your existing HDD and everything else, but you will have to do a fresh install of your operating system, so if you don't have one, you will need to get one as well. Use none's recommendations for the $500 build, without the case and hard drive it will cost you just a little over $400 before rebates. If that's too much, you could always get 2GB of RAM now and add another 2GB later but I would only recommend that if you are going to be using windows xp. If you are using windows 7, then you need 4GB. Vista is completely out of the question and should be avoided by everyone.
    [23:43:22] [P] [85:Bowsjob]: If its between 2 holy pallys its gonna be a gear fight most likely

  8. #8

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by chaud
    All of it. Don't waste any more money on that system.
    Agree with this 100% (We really are trying to help you when we say this, however negative it sounds)

    Also, the builds None put together are solid for the prices, but as he said, the longer you can hold out and increase your budget, the better off you're going to be. Also keep in mind that everything's going to get cheaper the longer you wait.

  9. #9

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Your entire system.. Bang for the buck setup is i5 750, 4gb DDR3 1600, and a ATI 5770, or a 5850 if you do more intense gaming than wow. If you're really major into FPS gaming, go 5870 or 5970.
    2x Intel Xeon 5680 12 Cores (2x6 Cores)@ 5.0ghz.* EVGA Classified SR-2 Motherboard.*Kingston Hyper-X 48gb(12x4gb) DDR3 1600.* 3x OCZ Colossus SSD 1.5gb (3x500gb) Raid 0.* 2x Enermax 1250W PSU. 4x EVGA GTX 480 Quad-SLI.* Samsung F3 1TB Storage Drive.* Custom Watercooled (EK 2xCPU/4xGPU Blocks, 2xMCP655 Pumps, 3xXSPC Dual Bay Reservoirs, 3x480 GTX Radiators, 24x Scythe GentleTyphoon AP15 Fans in Push/Pull).* 3x Dell 3008wfp 30" IPS Monitors.* ASUS Xonar D2X 7.1 PCIe

  10. #10
    Mechagnome
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    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by elseagoat
    I am a college student and I don't have the luxury of living off of my parents for the rest of my life in their basement.

    I don't use this computer for anything but word processing and WoW, it doesn't need to run top notch games. If I really have to scrap the entire thing and build a new rig, any suggested pieces? I really do not have 1k to drop on it, I would like to be able to spend 400 and be able to handle the new expansion without too much chop I don't care about running at max resolution and whatnot just enough to make it pretty and smooth. What kind of pieces should I be looking at if I'm going to make a new rig?
    well forgive people telling you ARE wasting money on ur system because if u buy anything new you still will have the bottleneck of old system anyways,
    and on a side note dont try and bash these people when there trying to help you, and u can probly get a pre built system for 400 but it isnt gonna be anything good

  11. #11

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by None
    CPU: AMD Athlon II x4 630 @ 2.8Ghz
    Motherboard: Asrock M3A770DE
    Video Card: Sapphire HD 4850
    RAM: G.Skill 2x2gb CAS9
    Power Supply: Silverstone 400w
    Case: Silverstone PS02B
    Hard drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3
    Total cost: $506.94 - $35 in rebates: $471.94

    That's about as cheap as it gets. I seriously can't find anything cheaper; combos don't even apply to components at prices like this. Putting an extra $100 into the budget would completely change it.

    $600:
    CPU: AMD Phenom II x4 955 @ 3.2ghz
    Motherboard: Asrock M3A770DE
    Video Card: Powercolor 5770 1gb
    RAM: G.Skill 2x2gb CAS7
    Power Supply: Silverstone 400w
    Case: Silverstone PS02B
    Hard drive: Samsung Spinpoint F3
    Total cost: $621.93
    Total after rebates: $593.93

    Honestly, if you can live with it for a bit longer and save up about $800 you'll get a far better computer. An $800 build will be miles ahead of these two builds without cutting corners.

    You cant run all this on 400W Power supply - you must have at least 500W(maybe 550W) - and i suggest 600W . Its needed by Video card.Just check the Graphics card requiments

  12. #12

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hangman

    You cant run all this on 400W Power supply - you must have at least 500W(maybe 550W) - and i suggest 600W . Its needed by Video card.Just check the Graphics card requiments
    It will run comfortably on a 400w power supply, as long as there is no adjustments from stock voltages on any components. Minimum requirements mean nothing if you know what you're doing. At peak load the second build shouldn't pull more than 230 - 250 watts at PEAK LOAD(100% across everything).

    Edited to clarify peak load.
    Errors using inadequate data are much less than those using no data at all. - Charles Babbage

  13. #13
    Herald of the Titans
    Join Date
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    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hangman

    You cant run all this on 400W Power supply - you must have at least 500W(maybe 550W) - and i suggest 600W . Its needed by Video card.Just check the Graphics card requiments
    Minimum requirements are for people with half-ass PSUs. People who know they have a good PSU don't really need to pay attention to or rely on minimum power requirements.

    Crappy 400W PSU:
    dual 12v rails with: ~13A on each or up to 18-20A if it is single rail

    Good 400W PSU (like the one none recommended for example):
    single 12v rail with 25A

    May not seem like a huge difference since we're talking about a budget build and the numbers are quite small, but it does make a difference.
    [23:43:22] [P] [85:Bowsjob]: If its between 2 holy pallys its gonna be a gear fight most likely

  14. #14

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by None
    It will run comfortably on a 400w power supply, as long as there is no adjustments from stock voltages on any components. Minimum requirements mean nothing if you know what you're doing. At peak load the second build shouldn't pull more than 230 - 250 watts at PEAK LOAD(100% across everything).

    Edited to clarify peak load.

    it will MAYBE boot up to windows or smth but it will die when you start some game like GRID or BF2 or WOW.... you will see smartass

  15. #15

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by nwo
    Minimum requirements are for people with half-ass PSUs. People who know they have a good PSU don't really need to pay attention to or rely on minimum power requirements.

    Crappy 400W PSU:
    dual 12v rails with: ~13A on each or up to 18-20A if it is single rail

    Good 400W PSU (like the one none recommended for example):
    single 12v rail with 25A

    May not seem like a huge difference since we're talking about a budget build and the numbers are quite small, but it does make a difference.

    Half-brain man - if you will put this machine on 400W PSU it will run 100% load altime , how long it will stand it? better to buy more pwrfull PSU than to stuck after sometime

  16. #16

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hangman

    Half-brain man - if you will put this machine on 400W PSU it will run 100% load altime , how long it will stand it? better to buy more pwrfull PSU than to stuck after sometime
    Did you completely miss my post where I said it will run around 250watts at peak load? I can't even stress my hardware outside of benchmarks to the point of peak load and I'm a heavy user. Stop spewing diarrhea from your mouth, you obviously have no idea what you're talking about.

    Edited out insults 8)
    Errors using inadequate data are much less than those using no data at all. - Charles Babbage

  17. #17
    Moderator Cilraaz's Avatar
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    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Hangman, you have 4 total posts, which are all in this thread. Two of them are insults to people that I consider well respected in this forum. Not really a good start.

    On topic: I'd probably go with a 550W+ PSU, but mainly for future expansion. A 400W PSU would support the system as laid out. Computer components are becoming more and more efficient. There's not nearly as much electrical "leakage" as there used to be in older tech, leading to more efficiency and lower power requirements.

  18. #18

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    long time reader, (nearly) first time poster, but I can't resist chiming in about PSU's.

    NWO has it right -- wattage is a "dummy" indicator for amperage, because generally speaking, a 500W supply will provide ~18A on the 12V line. If you know how to read the white sticker on the PSU (not really that hard if you try), you can find yourself a lower wattage supply that delivers plenty of amps. Lower wattage generally means cheaper price point, but don't get confused:
    A 800W supply for $50 is probably bad.
    A 550W supply for $70 could be awesome (check the white sticker).

    Generally, don't spend more than $100 on a PSU, IMO. Unless you have very specific needs (running SLI or xFire or 10 hard drives something like that).

    I disagree with some other's assertions that you're wasting money with that system. Bump your RAM up to 2GB and you'll see an immediate performance boost for addon's especially (and while in dal), for less than $100 (i'd hope). Which is probably all you're looking for. If your CPU socket supports a dual core chip, then that might also be a good upgrade for alot cheaper than a new mobo, cpu, and ram combo. If you do buy new RAM, try to buy a module that you could use in a new mobo, since they are all cheap right now -- DDR800 will dial down to whatever (DDR400 or 333 for instance). But DDR2+ won't work in a DDR slot.

    edit - your != you're .. doh.

  19. #19

    Re: Looking to upgrade, whats my bottleneck?

    Quote Originally Posted by elseagoat
    Im running the following specs:

    processor = AMD Athlon 64 3800+ 2.41 ghz (I built this computer a long time ago, I had no idea what 32 vs 64 was I assumed bigger was better but I'm running a 32 bit operating system due to driver conflicts with 64 bit windows)

    ram = 1 gig DDR2 dual channel (I have 2 extra dimms, can I put a matched pair of 2gigs in these extra slots of a different make and brand? I heard 3 gigs is all you can put on a 32 bit system)

    video = Geforce 8600 GT


    I experience a bunch of lag when running complex UI setups with lots of active components (like power auras with many many many effects to show debuffs on me, on targets, cooldowns, ect) especially in densely populated areas. Outside of Dal in normal BGs and whatnot, it runs smooth enough with graphics turned down, starts to get a little chop when turning graphics up, and gets a ton of chop (and huge load times) no matter the graphics settings when I go into Dal or enter a densely populated zone (Isle of Conquest or Wintergrasp).

    Basically, I can't tell if it is a weak Graphics card, Memory, or even processor, or some combination of the above. Thanks for the help.
    It's most likely your memory. The UI is loaded into memory very much like the rest of your applications including your OS. You are right about the three GB Ram, however you want to look at their clock speed, if one of the dim(s) is slower the entire memory bank will run at the slower speed. Your graphics card is ok, but mainly RAM and CPU upgrade would greatly help.

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