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Upgrade: CPU vs RAM

by paulroberts20 / September 15, 2007 7:56 AM PDT

Hi, i'm planning on upgrading my PC soon, i'll be upgrading both my RAM and CPU, but i'm wondering which one to do first? (it may be a while before I can buy whichever I don't get now)

My specs are:

ASUS M2V-MX Motherboard

1GB Kingston DDR2 RAM

AMD Sempron 3400+ (AM2)

NVIDIA GeForce 9700 GS (PCI-E x16)

[if you need more details, let me know]

I would like to upgrade to either an AMD Athlon 64 3800+ (dual core)

or get another 1GB DDR2 RAM stick..

Which one would be better to buy first?





Thanks!

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Sure about that video card...is it built in ?
by VAPCMD / September 15, 2007 9:15 AM PDT
In reply to: Upgrade: CPU vs RAM

Having trouble finding NVidia 9700 GS

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oops
by paulroberts20 / September 15, 2007 9:18 AM PDT

sorry i meant a GeForce 7900 GS

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And how much RAM on the GPU ?
by VAPCMD / September 15, 2007 9:33 AM PDT
In reply to: oops

The 1GB RAM is one stick (1GB) or two (512MBs) ?

VAPCMD

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256MB
by paulroberts20 / September 15, 2007 9:37 AM PDT

256MB GDDR3

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(NT) And the other question about the main memory ????
by VAPCMD / September 15, 2007 11:41 AM PDT
In reply to: 256MB
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.
by paulroberts20 / September 15, 2007 7:10 PM PDT

main memory is one stick 1GB

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You didn't mention OS and I'm thinking you're using
by VAPCMD / September 16, 2007 1:26 AM PDT
In reply to: Upgrade: CPU vs RAM

WinXP. Most view the RAM sweet spot for WinXP at 1GB and Vista at 2GB. Some applications and games work better with two GBs RAM. Check your game specs for HW requirements...GPU, CPU and RAM.

If the upgrade is to increase GAME performance ...your best upgrade might be a higher performance video card vice more RAM or a better CPU. If that's the case, suggest going to http://www.tomshardware.com and look at the GPU comparisons to see how your existing card does. The solution for some of us is to simply lower the bar a little and not try to run the game at the max resolution or with every possible enhancement feature enabled.

Next I'd probably upgrade the CPU and I'd probably bump the 3800+ to something better ... especially where the cost difference is nominal. Sometimes you can get noticeably more CPU for a relatively few $$. Generally speaking ... as time goes on, CPUs decline in price, video cards decline in price but RAM is very cheap now and goes up and down based on supply and demand.

If you add RAM, be sure to match the existing RAM....same density (1GB) same speed and same mfg if possible. Your system DOCs indicate dual channel architecture so adding matching RAM should also enhance performance beyond just doubling the RAM itself.

Let us know how it goes.

VAPCMD

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thanks
by paulroberts20 / September 16, 2007 3:16 AM PDT

thanks for all the info
i am running XP, good guess Happy

decided to upgrade to a dual core CPU, might do the ram some time in the future..

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Thanks for the feedback....be interested to hear which CPU
by VAPCMD / September 16, 2007 4:41 AM PDT
In reply to: thanks

you got and how much performance change you observe.

Depending on the game(s), your system was a little weak in several areas ...CPU, RAM and video.

VAPCMD

PS...Don't wait too long on the RAM....the longer you wait, the more difficult it will be to find the best match for the one DIMM you have and RAM prices will not stay this low forever.

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i haven't got it yet...
by paulroberts20 / September 16, 2007 4:46 AM PDT

but i'll keep you posted as soon as i get it, which (touch wood) will be tommorrow, couple of days at most.

TTFN

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re: cpu vs ram
by fairladyzx2plus2 / September 20, 2007 7:23 AM PDT

I beleive for the time being i'd just grab more ram and then save up to get a higher gpu, cpu, and a motherbard and save the ram and use it on your soon to be motherboard. Superiorelectronics.com has an excellent selection of ram 1gb for less than $30 which is very good also their customer service is superior.

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help
by poopingfish / September 21, 2007 4:39 AM PDT

If you havnt already decided, your video card [7900gs?] is fine.
And 1gb ram is sufficient for XP. No problem there, you will notice the most performance boost froma new proc, dual core, a 3600x2 or similair perhaps.

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I'd usually say go with more ram, but...
by Bullseyestrat / September 28, 2007 12:29 PM PDT
In reply to: Upgrade: CPU vs RAM

You do seem to have enough for XP like the others said. Right now the Sempron is the bottom of the barrel when it comes to AMD cpu's, so a nice Athlon 64X2 should do the trick. I'd recommend something above the 4000+ range seeing how alot of them are under $100 now. I use a 4200+ and it definitely does the job for me.

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See message 9-16-07
by VAPCMD / September 28, 2007 12:37 PM PDT

He went with the CPU two weeks ago

VAPCMD

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My question is......
by angrykeyboarder / September 29, 2007 12:52 AM PDT

is his mobo compatible with the CPU he wants?

If not, he'd need a new one as well.

And if the original mobo is more than a few years old it's likely not PCI Express which means mandatory RAM and Video Card (unless you go with onoboard) upgrades to go with the new mobo as well.

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Take a look ...the answers to all your questions are
by VAPCMD / September 29, 2007 2:04 AM PDT
In reply to: My question is......

on the ASUS Website.

Here are the CPUs that work with his MB ...doesn't look like a problem to me. No new MB needed either...PCIe....got that too

CPU Since Since
PCB BIOS
Athlon 64 3000+ (CN),512K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3200+ (CN),512K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3200+ (DE),512K,rev.G,45W,SocketAM2 ALL 0601
Athlon 64 3500+ (CN),512K,rev.F2,35W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3500+ (CN),512K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3500+ (CW),512K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3500+ (DE),512K,rev.G,45W,SocketAM2 ALL 0601
Athlon 64 3500+ (DH),512K,rev.F3,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 3800+ (CN),512K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3800+ (CW),512K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 3800+ (DE),512K,rev.G,45W,SocketAM2 ALL 0601
Athlon 64 3800+ (DH),512K,rev.F3,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 4000+ (CW),512K,rev.F2,59W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 4000+ (DH),512K,rev.F3,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 FX-62 (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,125W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 3600+ (CU),512K,65W,rev.F2,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 3600+ (DD),1MB,65W,rev.G,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 3800+ (CS),512Kx2,65W,rev.F2,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 3800+ (CU),512Kx2,35W,rev.F2,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 3800+ (CU),512Kx2,65W,rev.F2,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 3800+ (CU),512Kx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 3800+ (CZ),512Kx2,65W,rev.F3,SocketAM2 ALL 0601
Athlon 64 X2 4000+ (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4000+ (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4000+ (DD),1MB,rev.G,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 4200+ (CU),512Kx2,rev.F2,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4200+ (CU),512Kx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4400+ (CS),1MBx2,65W,rev.F2,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4400+ (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4400+ (DD),1MB,rev.G,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 4600+ (CU),512Kx2,rev.F2,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4600+ (CU),512Kx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4600+ (CZ),1MB,rev.F3,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0601
Athlon 64 X2 4800+ (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4800+ (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 4800+ (DD),1MB,rev.G,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (CS),1MB,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (CU),512Kx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (CZ),1MB,rev.F3,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0904
Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (CZ),1MB,rev.F3,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (DD),1MB,rev.G,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (DS),1MB,rev.G,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 1005
Athlon 64 X2 5200+ (CS),1MBx2,rev.F2,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Athlon 64 X2 5200+ (CZ),2MB,rev.F3,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0601
Athlon 64 X2 5200+ (CZ),2MB,rev.F3,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 5200+ (DD),1MB,rev.G,65W,SocketAM2 ALL 0703
Athlon 64 X2 5400+ (CZ),1M,rev.F3,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 5600+ (CZ),2MB,rev.F3,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 6000+ (CZ),2MB,rev.F3,125W,SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Athlon 64 X2 6000+ (CZ),2MB,rev.F3,89W,SocketAM2 ALL 0904
Athlon X2 BE-2300 (DD),1M,45W,rev.G,SocketAM2 ALL 0904
Athlon X2 BE-2350 (DD),1M,45W,rev.G,SocketAM2 ALL 0904
Opteron 1210, 1.8G, 2M/L2, rev.F3, 103W, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1212HE, 2.00G, 2M/L2, rev.F3, 65W, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1214, 2.20GHz, 2M/L2, rev.F3, 103W, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1216, 2.40G, 2M/L2, rev.F2, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1216, 2.40G, 2M/L2, rev.F3, 103W, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1218, 2.60G, 2M/L2, rev.F3, 103W, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1220, 2.80G, 2M/L2, rev.F3, 103W, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Opteron 1220SE, 2.80G, 2M/L2, rev.F2, SocketAM2 ALL 0411
Sempron 2800+ (CN),128K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3000+ (CN),256K,rev.F2,35W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3000+ (CN),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3200+ (CN),128K,rev.F2,35W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3200+ (CN),128K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3200+ (CW),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3400+ (CN),256K,rev.F2,35W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3400+ (CN),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3400+ (CW),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3500+ (CN),128K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3600+ (CN),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron 3600+ (CW),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0904
Sempron 3800+ (CN),256K,rev.F2,62W,SocketAM2 ALL 0201
Sempron LE1100 (DE),256K,rev.G1,45W,SocketAM2 ALL 0904
Sempron LE1150 (DE),256K,rev.G1,45W,SocketAM2 ALL 1803

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CPU 1st
by prince10bee / September 28, 2007 10:12 PM PDT
In reply to: Upgrade: CPU vs RAM

Do the CPU 1st. RAM will do nothing if you have a bad CPU.

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haven't actually bought anything yet
by paulroberts20 / September 28, 2007 10:33 PM PDT
In reply to: CPU 1st

but thanks guys for all the info!

i'm thiking about waiting now, so I can get the CPU and RAM together, along with (maybe) a new case and a bigger hard drive (looking 250GB IDE)

mayb a while tho Sad

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According to the POST 9-16-07...he went with the CPU. But..
by VAPCMD / September 29, 2007 2:15 AM PDT
In reply to: CPU 1st

the message below yours basically reverses that post.

For what its worth ...I agree. CPU is the right choice to get better performance for uses intended. Still think thats the right answer and there's really no point holding off for more RAM and another HDD unless he ain't got the dough. Adding RAM and a HDD is much easier than installing a CPU and can be done without removing or disconnecting as much other HW.

VAPCMD

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