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Help upgrading to make PC Faster

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Grimmer, Apr 11, 2005.

  1. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    I'm looking to upgrade my pc to make it run faster. I thought about starting from scratch and building my own, but I wouldn't know where to start and what types of disasters I would run into. Right now I have a compaq presario,
    running win xp home w/ a 2.4 ghz intel celeron processor w/256 ddr sdram memory w/60 Gb of hard drive + cd+rw drive. I'm looking to have at least 3.0 ghz processor and would like to use that new Hyper Threading?Is there any other hardware etc. I could use to make my pc any faster?

    Thanks for the help.
  2. ~Pyrate~

    ~Pyrate~ MajorGeek

    right now the fastest CPUs are Athlon 64s in the 939 socket

    also it depends on what you are doing with your PC ... for instance if you game you'd want a good graphics card but if you don't it's not going to make much of a difference
  3. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    What you use it for would really dictate what options you currently have.

    A lot more memory would give you the best performance boost for the cost.

    What are your exact system specs currently and what is the PC mainly used for?
  4. kadavill

    kadavill MajorGeek

    You have allready decided on the p4 HT 3.0Ghz.
    Get a good mobo.High speed RAM(ABOUT 1GB of it).

    You will need to get these new stuffs, you can use your old cd-rw,harddisk,monitor and graphics card if you dont want to get new ones now.


    If you just plan to use the same mobo and same cpu then your only option is add some RAM or get a new graphic card.

    PS:Insted of the HT you could use the AMD 64fx.And the AMD2800+ barton core is not bad either.GOOD MOBO IS REALLY IMPORTANT.
  5. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Hi insomniac,
    I'm not exactly sure what parts I want to get or whats best to use.But what i want is a faster pc that I am able to use for online gaming,and is able to run 2 huge programs at the same time(like office xp+frontpage) without freezing or delays.I also would like to get a dvd+rw drive and a new flat screen monitor,not sure whats the best option there either, I'm looking to spend no more than $700.00. What do you think I should do?
  6. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    You may be able to use a Pentium 4 processor on your current motherboard as well as more RAM and an AGP video card if it doesn't have one.

    If you can, then that would be the best cost effective solution and give you much better performance.

    Check your motherboard manual or website for what processors and memory modules etc it supports.

    If not, then you will need a new motherboard and processor etc, but again that depends if you want or can use any of the existing Compaq parts.

    If you like gaming then what video card do you currently have? You may be also able to update that for better performance.

    Download a copy of Everest Home Edition (freeware) from the download sections here and that will tell you what hardware and software is installed, and provide manufacturer's links.

    DVD burners have tumbled in price. In my opinion the best value drive at the moment is the LG 4163, and it's also the only DVD burner that supports DVD RAM, is very cheap and reliable.

    As far as monitor, you say a flat panel monitor so I'm assuming you want an LCD screen and not a CRT one?

    I would only buy an LCD screen that offered a no dead pixel warranty.

    BenQ and Samsung generally have very good warranties, but it can vary from country to country so always check first.

    You need to look for a refresh rate of preferably 12ms or less for gaming and DVD playback, as well as a digital input.

    Some manufacturers, like CMV also provide an 8ms 17" screen with a 30 day money back guarantee and 3 years on-site warranty!

    When it comes to an LCD screen, it really pays to do your homework.

    EDIT: I just saw the word Presario in your post, so does that mean it's a notebook?

    Lol, after typing all that too!

    Anyway, a lot of the above is still relevant if you are building or buying a desktop.
  7. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Hello insomniac,
    No it's not a notebook.Thank you for your input, I'm going to download that Everest
    and I will get back to you, I'll also check the compatibility of the processer w/ the current motherboard.
    Thank you for all your support, you guys at majorgeeks are great.
  8. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    Yep, we're the geekiest by far! :)

    Anyway, see what you have with Everest and post back if you need help.

    Good luck.
  9. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Hey insomnaic,
    So I went to the manufacturers website and looked tried to look up the motherboards model,but they didn't even have the model listed that I have.
    Which is strange b/c this cpu isn't that old.Anyways, here the info. that I think you need, I'm not sure were to begin.(I'm not yet a geek,but I can feel the forces pulling me).

    Operating System Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
    OS Service Pack Service Pack 2
    Internet Explorer 6.0.2900.2180 (IE 6.0 SP2)
    DirectX (DirectX 9.0c)
    Computer Name
    User Name Owner

    CPU Type Intel Celeron 4A, 2400 MHz (24 x 100)
    Motherboard Name Asus P4G533-LA
    Motherboard Chipset Intel Brookdale-G i845GL
    System Memory 247 MB (PC2700 DDR SDRAM)
    BIOS Type Award Modular (05/06/03)
    Communication Port Communications Port (COM1)
    Communication Port ECP Printer Port (LPT1)

    Video Adapter Intel(R) 82845G/GL/GE/PE/GV Graphics Controller (64 MB)
    3D Accelerator Intel Extreme Graphics
    Monitor Compaq 7550 [17" CRT] (13321244934968)

    Audio Adapter Intel 82801DB(M) ICH4(-M) - AC'97 Audio Controller [B-0]

    IDE Controller Intel(r) 82801DB Ultra ATA Storage Controller-24CB
    Floppy Drive Floppy disk drive
    Disk Drive SAMSUNG SV0602H (60 GB, 5400 RPM, Ultra-ATA/100)
    Optical Drive LITE-ON COMBO LTC-48161H (DVD:16x, CD:48x/24x/48x DVD-ROM/CD-RW)
    SMART Hard Disks Status OK

    C: (NTFS) 52919 MB (41553 MB free)
    D: (FAT32) 4339 MB (674 MB free)

    Keyboard Compaq PS2 Keyboard (2K - 3)
    Mouse PS/2 Compatible Mouse

    Network Adapter Realtek RTL8139 Family PCI Fast Ethernet NIC (
    Modem Lucent Win Modem

    Printer Auto hp psc 1200 series on MAINDESKTOP
    Printer Fax
    Printer hp psc 1200 series
    USB1 Controller Intel 82801DB(M) ICH4(-M) - USB Controller [B-0]
    USB1 Controller Intel 82801DB(M) ICH4(-M) - USB Controller [B-0]
    USB1 Controller Intel 82801DB(M) ICH4(-M) - USB Controller [B-0]
    USB2 Controller Intel 82801DB(M) ICH4(-M) - Enhanced USB2 Controller [B-0]
  10. ~Pyrate~

    ~Pyrate~ MajorGeek

    sometimes companies like compaq modify (or have mb man. modify) the mb for whatever purpose, so you wouldn't find that mb at asus' site .. I'm fairly certain you can put any socket 478 w/ a 533mhz FSB P4 you want in there
  11. Rikky

    Rikky Wile E. Coyote - One of a kind

    If you buy the chip from a decent store they should let you return it anyways if it doesn't work and a bios update might be needed to make your new cpu work with your mobo. :D
  12. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    hey pyrate,
    You might as well be talking to me in German, I don't know a heck of alot about computers.I guess what I was trying get at was if my motherboard was compatible w/
    a pentium 4 possibly better processer.How do I look for that on there website? Or anywhere else for that matter.
    Thank you for your input,
  13. Rikky

    Rikky Wile E. Coyote - One of a kind

    Whats the number on your compaq? :confused:
  14. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    I'm only on dial-up speed at the moment so I can't look around for a motherboard manual for you.

    Based on the above information and assuming it's correct, then it's an ASUS P4G533-LA.

    Going by the numbering (P4533), I would assume it supports Pentium 4's with a Frontside Bus of 533, so I can't see why you couldn't change it from the current Celeron to a Pentium 4.

    Obviously make sure first and see what is the fastest processor you can use, and try to source a manual from somewhere.

    As far as the graphics, it's only on-board video currently, and if the motherboard has an AGP slot then getting a graphics card will make a huge difference with things like gaming and DVD.

    The only other things lacking and you could change would be going to 1 GB of memory instead of 312 MB now and of which 64 MB is used by the on-board graphics, and maybe getting a bigger and faster hard drive.

    The current one is 60 GB but is only rated at 5 400 RPM which is excruciatingly slow.

    A decent 7 200 RPM drive with the other improvements above would give you a pretty good system without spending a fortune or having to build another one.

    If you can't find the manual at ASUS, try finding the Compaq model number and looking it up on the HP/Compaq site.

    THIS isn't the exact model as yours, but very similar, and the good news is that it supports Pentium 4's and Celerons up to 3.06 GHZ and has an AGP slot!
  15. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Hey Rikky,
    I'm assuming you mean the model # it's S4010CL compaq prsario
  16. Rikky

    Rikky Wile E. Coyote - One of a kind

  17. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Thank you for that info. that was very helpful
  18. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Hello insomniac,
    So looked into it,and decided to instead buy a new laptop.Do you have any suugestions on whats the cheapest laptop that has a dvd+rw cd+rw drives,with at least 2.8 ghz processor with a good graphics card for online games?
  19. Wyatt_Earp

    Wyatt_Earp MajorGeek

    You might check out www.powernotebooks.com

    I'd suggest a Pentium M processor as high as you are willing to afford. Something like a 1.8Ghz. (don't worry, the Pentium M processors have a lower clock speed, but perform just as well as a Pentium 4 with a much higher clock speed)

    To be honest though, laptops are not that great for gaming. A desktop of the same calibur will probably cost half as much.
  20. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Thanks wyatt!
  21. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    I don't own a laptotp, so unfortunately cannot offer any experiences.

    I'm sure the others here can and will though.

    Once thing I will say is that unlike desktops, it's not a simple matter of adding and upgrading components like it is in a desktop, so give it a lot of thought and get as much as you can afford now.

    Good luck.
  22. Rikky

    Rikky Wile E. Coyote - One of a kind

    An imprtant consideration is the response time of the screen,the amount of time the screen is able to show the redrawn picture if it is too slow it will look like you are playing on GTA2 with motion blur on with every game you play.And it will be too slow unless you invest in a really expensive "laptop/portable PC" If gaming is your bag forget laptops the novelty soon wears off,the only need for laptops is work. :D
  23. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    It's not only the response time that is important, but the dead pixel warranty.

    Now is the time to find out about both, not after you have already bought it.
  24. Grimmer

    Grimmer Corporal

    Hello Insomniac,
    Ok, you convinced me, I am definitley going to buy a desktop now instead.I havn't seen any notebooks that even come close to the desktop performance I'm lookin for.

    Thank you all for the help,
  25. Insomniac

    Insomniac Billy Ray Cyrus #1 Fan

    You're welcome.

    Unless you really need the portability of a laptop, you would be so much better off with a desktop.

    They are cheaper, faster, usually more reliable, in fact in every aspect apart from portability they are far superior.

    You won't regret the decision.

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