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Easy upgrade path or a recipe for unforseen problems?

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by dr_mabuse, Oct 25, 2005.

  1. dr_mabuse

    dr_mabuse
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    Hi all
    I have got a Sony PC which I about two years old, which has an Athlon XP 2600 cpu and the usual bundled components, and I want to beef it up and replace the CPU, MB and Memory whilst keeping the HD, Graphics and Opticals that are already there.

    My concerns are:

    Given that it's working perfectly with the XP2600+ as the source cpu, does that imply that an AMD CPU/MB combination would be best? Bear in mind that the XP discs are not OEM and are the usual "branded" ones that ship with this type of PC - they don't have any customised install restrictions etc?

    Assuming that a straight replacement of the CPU + MB + RAM (and of course a fresh install of XP sp2 I would assume) is OK, is it likely that the PSU will need beefing up? I'm not adding extra HD or optical drives yet - will do that when I transfer all to a fresh case later on. I know that this means the HD and Graphics will sorely lag behind performance wise, but I can't replace all the parts this month :mad: and will upgrade both once paid again :D

    What about cooling - the Athlon X2 CPU I was considering is the boxed version with heatsink and fan - will the existing case fans be OK or do these X2's generate vastly more heat?

    Any other unexpected issues that I have overlooked? The existing MB won't be some odd size or anything daft like that would it, that would prevent a standard MB from dropping into my Vaio case? Or should I just take out all the separate components from my Vaio that I'm keeping and just fit it all into a new case with the new bits?

    Anyhow sorry to post a whopper but I am trying to put as much detail as possible.

    dr_m

    PS
    I was thinking of the following parts:
    AMD Athlon X2 4200
    Gigabyte GAK8NXP
    2GB PC3200 Ballistix
    £658 from Komplett

    Thanks for looking :thumbsup:
     
  2. lisag

    lisag
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    Well.... you seem to be spending a lot of money on fairly top of the range kit, seems a shame to stick it in an old case with an old PSU.

    Do you like the case? Have you opened it up to see if it all standard ATX fixings inside - not seen the inside of a VAIO, but I know Dell machines are annoyingly awkward to upgrade.

    Basically, yes it should work, but will be a load of hassle to build it in the old case, only to transfer it to the new case in a months time.. I have no idea what the PSU is like that you have, but there are some very good ones on the market for around £60, that are powerful, modular, reliable and quiet.

    Is noise an issue for you? Is your existing graphics card AGP - as I imagine you will be buying a new mobo with PCI express.

    Not sure about the legalities of your copy of XP - but doesn't the registration link the serial number to your hardware, so may encounter problems when going to activate with the new kit.

    Some thoughts anyway, hope this helps

    lisa
     
  3. dr_mabuse

    dr_mabuse
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    lisag
    Yeah I know what you're saying - I chose the parts to give me plenty of scope to last a couple of years of hard service (i do a lot of divx - dvd encoding etc etc), and to be fair I have a nagging voice in my heads that says I am just penny pinching by not going for a complete build...

    I hadn't thought of the AGP issue either :oops: - glad I asked now!!

    Any more thoughts from anyone?

    dr_m
     
  4. Skunkpipe

    Skunkpipe
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    I doubt you'll have any issues with the XP install disc. It maybe 100% legal, but that's another issue.

    The X2 Chips run nice and cool - stick a decent HSF on there and it'll be quiet as a mouse.

    TBH I'd be thinking of a new PSU case and HDD whilst I was at it. and sell the Vaio as a whole to help fund it.
     
  5. tinoest

    tinoest
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    The motherboard you have choosen there does not support AGP so you will have to buy a new graphics card with that current set-up. Unless you graphic's card is a top of the range model like the 6800GT then i would just swap over to pci-express now tbh.
     
  6. dr_mabuse

    dr_mabuse
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    Skunkpipe - I am thinking about selling the Vaio complete - I even posted a thread on here a while ago about it - but I can't figure out how much to ask for it. Some constributors here suggested speccing a similar machine new and then halving the cost - but how do you spec a "similar" machine when technology has moved on so quickly in 2 years?

    tinoest - thanks, I see my error there now - it's becoming more obvious that I might aswell save up another month and do the whole thing I guess.

    Thanks for looking everyone

    dr_m
     
  7. Skunkpipe

    Skunkpipe
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    If you want a rough idea have a look for similar spec'd items on ebay, put a watch on them and see what they fetch at the end.

    What's the full spec?
     
  8. dr_mabuse

    dr_mabuse
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    skunkpipe
    specs:
    Sony Vaio PCV-RX514 Midi Tower
    Athlon XP 2600 CPU
    512 MB PC2700 Ram
    80GB HDD
    Sony DRU710 4X Dual Layer / 16x DVD+R burner
    Sony 32X CD-R
    Windows XP Home inc SP2
    Keyboard, Mouse and Speakers
    Comes with Photoshop Elements, Sony Click to DVD and a few other bits. Nero also as it came with the 710 when I upgraded to it.

    There was one a while back on ebay but the guy had set such a high reserve that no-one had bid on it.

    Considering no monitor, I think it's prob worth only £300 or so - what do you think? Could be miles off - haven't got a clue mate :confused:

    dr_m
     
  9. Skunkpipe

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    adding up the sum of the parts in my head gives about £250-300 to build it new. I'm guessing £200 on ebay £250 tops (I tried the selling systems on eBay and it's a mugs game - they're all pikeys who want the moon on a stick in exchange for 50p and a copy of Caravans Monthly)- you'd probably get more if you put an add up in a shop window
     
  10. DNWILLIAMS

    DNWILLIAMS
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    Just a thought but you could save a few quid by not going the x2 processor route yet and upgrading to that in the future, you can get an AMD64 3500 for about £150 if your not a gamer a pci express card will cost about £40 and a good quality case for less than £20 from ebuyer (good products and prices but poor customer service) re-use your dvd burner and hard drive and your away. What to do with the old Sony then? Have you got a network? If you have your Sony would make a great network attached storage server all you'd need is a new HDD again Ebuyer sells IDE drives at less than £60 for 200GB, take a look at www.serverelements.com (moderator hope links are ok please edit if not). You'd make good use of your old pc and have a great safe backup and storage facility easlily acccesible on your network and you'd be on a winner with the costs, I have our photos, MP3's, home movies, ripped dvd's, some high def movies, my backups and any downloaded software all available on my network to either use on my HTPC, on my main PC in the office or on my laptop :thumbsup:
     
  11. dr_mabuse

    dr_mabuse
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    skunkpipe
    I was thinking of putting a little note on the office coffee machine I must confess! :D

    DNWILLIAMS
    Appreciate the suggestion, hadn't considered utilising my Vaio in that way - I'll look into it :smashin:

    Thanks for looking

    dr_m
     

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