My desktop is probably about 5 years old now and badly in need of an upgrade. I'm thinking of asking for some components for Christmas and probably buying some myself too, although the budget is tight. I'm wondering what is vital to upgrade now and what could be delayed for a little while. Here's the specs:
Athlon 64 X2 Dual Core CPU 5600+ ~2.8GHz
4GB DDR2 RAM 800MHz
Two HD's totalling 750 GB, several year-old WD Greens.
ATI Radeon HD 4850 512mb
Asus Xonar D1 soundcard
Asus M2N-MX Motherboard
ATRIX Extreme Power 650W ATX12V P4650W PSU
Galaxy Black ATX Case
Windows 7 64bit OEM
I'm thinking the CPU and RAM have to go, and as a result the motherboard as that probably doesn't even support above dual core.
But what could stay? I'm guessing I could keep the hard drives, sound card, case and disc drive. If budget gets really tight, I could even make do with the old GPU for now.
But am I right in thinking that a new mobo will invalidate my Windows license and I'll need a new one? If so I'll probably buy Windows 8. And what about the PSU - it's 650W, but I've been told it's a crappy 650W one. Unfortunately I don't understand power supplies, but here are the specs:
AC INPUT 95-250VAC 5A 47-63HZ
+3.3V 30A | +5V 30A | +12V DC1 14A | +12V DC2 15A | -5V 0.5A | -12V 0.8A | +5VSB 2.5A |
My realistic target that I eventually want my computer to have is:
Quad Core i5 Sandybridge/Ivybridge CPU
8GB DDR3 RAM 1333/1600
GPU along the lines of Ati 7850/Nvidia 560 Ti
Or something equivalent. I've been looking at motherboard bundles as I thought that might be a good way of approaching this. There are some good ones on this page; I'm looking at the ones up to the £350 mark. http://www.scan.co.uk/3xs-overclocked-bundles
The Intel ones look good, but out of interest, what makes the £345 bundle worth over £100 more than the AMD ones that are £220-230ish?
This is my first proper DIY upgrade, and I've been looking at doing it a couple of times in the past but it never happened. I'm hoping that the third time's lucky. Before I was considering buying a whole PC, but I think I'll be brave and upgrade my old one myself. It's not too hard/risky is it?
Thanks in advance for reading all of this and giving advice; I seriously appreciate it!