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Need SERIOUS help on upgrading computer parts!

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Well Im a new forumer so forgive me if I posted in the wrong section.

Is my computer still upgradeable? I bought it in late 2006.

Its a Dell Dimension E520.

If yes, read on. If no, then ignore the rest of the thread.

Hm yeah. My computer cant run most games like Crysis smoothly anymore.

So I've decided to upgrade it. Its my first time doing so.

Some specs of my com. If you need more, dont hesistate to ask.

Processor: Intel® Core2 CPU 6300 @ 1.86GHz (2 CPUs)

Memory: 1022MB RAM

Video Card: Radeon X1300/X1550 Series

I've got about $480 to spend and Im from Singapore.

So yeah, what would you recommend?

I just want to run most games smoothly and dont wish to spend too much.

I dont need a monster, but if its achievable with that budget, I dont mind.

The main things I hope to upgrade are

the CPU speed

the system RAM

and the Video Card.

On a side note:

Is the RAM = the computer speed? I seriously have to upgrade my com's speed. Its taking like 10mins just to power up or shut down.

If not, then what determines the computer's speed?

And is the processor upgradeable? Its got me wondering for some time.

I hope that at least someone would give some advice.

I posted on other forums and no one replied me.

Please. All help is appreciated.

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That system is not upgradable for the sole reason that the power supply will not be able to handle anything more than the specs, and eventually it won't even be able to handle those specs. Perhaps I'm prejudiced against mass prebuilt systems, but power supplies are something the manufacturers skimp on as far as I know.

Remember that if you save the money for another prebuilt system, take special note of the video card in it, as high video memory (512 MB, 1 GB) is not representative of how powerful the card is. And it's exactly the video card that has to do most of the work for modern games.

Assuming I'm wrong on the power supply, you can upgrade the machine with 2x 1 GB DDR2 RAM as you have 2x 512 MB atm. A little but powerful (for the price) video card is the ATi Radeon HD4670 (With (G)DDR3 video memory), it should let you play modern games on low resolutions. As for the processor, it's dependant on which CPUs your motherboard supports. As it currently has a Conroe type CPU, it is probably upgradable to an Core 2 Duo E6550, or even the Core 2 Duo E6750. But if the motherboard supports a newer generation you have more choice in the matter. Note that replacing the CPU requires you to remove the cooler, which can be a mess for someone who's never done such a thing, and it requires thermal paste for replacing the old goo between the old CPU and the CPU cooler.

Finally, if it takes 10 minutes to boot, your windows installation is horribly bloated. I would suggest to backup all data and programs, and format.

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honestly the power supply would probably be around 250 to 350 watts, thats not much really, especially to upgrade with a new cpu and graphics card.

i'd check for prebuilt or a barebones system.

and RTB, my old dell had 1.5gb of ram and a fresh install and still took like 5 mins to boot, not sure why, cause i had even replaced the harddrive. of course it was a 1.8ghz celeron but that cant be the sole reason.  anyhow i got tired of it and built a new system. and it was in the long run cheaper than upgrading.

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