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New graphics card, or new system?



I'm interested in pumping up my system in preparation for half-life 2 and other such amazing games in the future. i had planned on buying a new machine, but a recent car accident has left me reconsidering my options :D Anyway, I have:
p4 1.5ghz (Socket 423 model)

i850 chipset mobo
512 megs of pc800 RDRAM
60 an 80 gig wd 8meg cache hard drive
16x dvd-rom
52/32/52x cdrw
Geforce 3 64 meg ddr (original, non-ti model)

I think that's everything you need to know. Anyway, Do you think getting a radeon 9800 or 9700 would be enough for getting good performance and all the great graphics extra goodies in the latest games, or should i go for a new i865 chipset mobo with a 2.8ghz HT p4 with a new ati card? Thanks a lot guys.
the latter upgrade would be good, but you could save some cash by grabbing a 2.4C P4 instead.

or go AMD

2500+ Barton for $140
Abit NF7-S for $160
2 X 256 MB OCZ PC3200 for $212
Radeon 9800 $400


P4 2.4C $259
Abit IS7 $160
2 X 256 MB OCZ PC3200 for $212
Radeon 9800 $400


at NCIX.com

you'll get equal performance with the AMD but save $100

that's what I'd get.... P4 is too expensive, and unless you go top of the line, you won't get any of the performance gain.


Ok thanks for the feedback. I've been exploring those options, and if i get something i'll likely buy the parts from NCIX and cobble the pc myself, it's just too damn fun to let someone else do it. BUT, no one has replied as per if just getting a new video card would be any good or not. Would my other stuff just be too slow? ie - CPU too slow for AI and such. Thanks guys.

P.s - My mobo will likely be the asus p4p delux or the gigabyte 865 model if i get a new pc, and i'm just too much of an intel fan to go AMD.

Thanks again.
Tough call. The CPU and video are both showing their age. But I'd put the video as the weakest link easily.

Doing the MB/CPU/RAM (~$500) will cost more than the video card (~$275 Saphire). You did not say what your budget is.

If you're looking at $300 go for the vid.

If the budget is $500 go for the video card ($275) and an AMD based MB/CPU/RAM (XP2200 Tbred, 512 DDR, decent MB $225).

If you want to burn money get the vid card and an intel upgrade.

Before doing anything though make sure your power supply can handle it 300-350W name brand.

You can sell off the old vid card (~$60), processor(~$80), MB (~$50) and RAM (~$40) to offset the price of the new equipment.

PS Your last post came up while I was typing, lol.


Ok, the current pc is staying, none of it is being sold off, as it's a wireless mp3 server for my stereo, that's what the 60 gig hard drive is for. ALso, it's a dell, so it's all their stuff, so the case can't be reused. I'm talking whole new system here. My budget will probably be about 1500 bucks canadian, and through certain connections i've obtained a new dell 19 inch ultrasharp flatpanel, so knock monitor out of the picture. So where do we go from here...
I would personally get a better graphics card at first... use it for a while and see if it suits you - then get the cpu and that in a month or two - splits the cost slightly plus it gives you the chance to play with the existing setup to decide if buying new kit would be a waste of money.

you could however, probably just upgrade your processor to another 400mhz fsb version - would take you to about 2.4ghz i think (if your mobo supports northwood core cpus)

but at the end of the day, its all down to preference - the rdram you've got there will help things out in the current setup, so I think a bigger cpu would be the best option (but I'd try the gfx first, and get the new cpu if just changing the gfx wasnt giving enough performance etc...)


hardware monkey
i'm a fan of getting the most out of your current setup before forking out a large chunk of money for new mobo, cpu, memory, etc. especially when you've invested in all that expensive memory.

isn't that fastest socket 423 chip 2.0ghz? i'm not sure. if it is, then i'm not sure that would be a worthy upgrade. up to you, really. if you don't think so, then i guess a new 865 board, 2.4c, and some pc3200 would be in order at some point. }:\

video card-wise, 9700pro is a good upgrade. gf4ti series isn't that much faster than your card to justify getting one and a 5900/9800pro is just too much to spend on a video card, probably. but i would upgrade the video card first because you might find the performance acceptable for a few more months.


Thanks a lot, that's what I was looking for. I'll sit on this for a while, let you guys know how it goes. Thanks again!


I dgo with a new system + gfx card, I recently built myself a new system I didn't really have a price limit =) just bought which components I wanted after doing alot of research.

CHeck my sig, for details but basically my total is 1600 for everything + I might buy a 172W Samsung lcd :) to go with my stuff.

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