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Old 03-23-2006, 05:53 PM  
'Hamas' Jenkins 'Hamas' Jenkins is offline
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Large Scale Computer Upgradge ?s

I recently purchased Lite-On DVD-RW and DVD-ROM drives from New Egg for my desktop. Before install them into my current machine, I’m thinking about upgrading the system as a whole. It is a Dell Dimension 3000 with a P4 running at 3 GHZ, 80 gig HD, Win XP Home, onboard video, and 768 megs of ram at this point. I realize that old Dell parts were proprietary, but to the best of my understanding, this is a Micro ATX Socket 478 board, so I will be able to transfer everything. Here are the questions that I do have about the process.

1) When I get a new board and install everything, I’m going to have to call Microsoft and ask them to allow me to use XP on this machine since it will “lock” when I switch out the old Dell components. Do they regularly allow this, and what will I have to do on my end in order to complete the switch?
2) I’ve heard that the Dell Power Supply for the 3000/4600 series is listed at 250 watts, but actually has a peak about 100 watts over that. Will this PSU be able to run the config I want that is listed below without worrying about burning anything out?
3) How difficult is removing the processor, and will I have to get a new heat sink?(is the old heat sink a Dell proprietary part)?
4) If I add a SATA HD, should I, or can I migrate XP onto this instead of the old HD?


Here is what I would like to add to my system:

An AGP Graphics card with 128-256 mb memory. I don’t need a beast, but I would like something with a little bit of power.
A second SATA HD 160-250 GB of storage
I was thinking about keeping the old CD-RW drive to take some of the “load” off of the DVD-RW drive. Is this a wise idea, or will it overtax the Dell stock PSU?

Thanks in advance for your reply
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Old 03-24-2006, 01:04 AM   #2
Valiant Valiant is offline
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Why are you upgrading??? Seems to me from looking at what you have to what you are thinking about you are just blowing money...

If you are using it to burn movies, either use the dvdrw more or get an external hd...

Your dell should allow you to get either a agp card or at least a pci, if you are not gaming there is no need for a top notch graphics card...

Your biggest need to help is buy a gig of ram to add to it, that way you are running 1.7g of memory...
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Old 03-24-2006, 08:58 AM   #3
'Hamas' Jenkins 'Hamas' Jenkins is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valiant
Why are you upgrading??? Seems to me from looking at what you have to what you are thinking about you are just blowing money...

If you are using it to burn movies, either use the dvdrw more or get an external hd...

Your dell should allow you to get either a agp card or at least a pci, if you are not gaming there is no need for a top notch graphics card...

Your biggest need to help is buy a gig of ram to add to it, that way you are running 1.7g of memory...
The Dimension 3000 board only has 2 DDR slots, which is a major pain in the ass, and it doesn't have a mounting bracket for a 2nd HD. I'm also concerned about the cooling issues of the case, because the fans were tripping balls last summer. The 3000 board also has no AGP slot, which although I could use a PCI, is still a pain in the arse.
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Old 03-24-2006, 05:18 PM   #4
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Add of the price of all the upgrades.. And then look around, It might be cheaper just to buy new...

•AMD Athlon™ 64 3500+
•Double-layer DVD±RW
•200GB 7200RPM hard drive
•PCI Express x16 slot
•1GB of DDR SDRAM
•9-in-1 memory card reader


http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Acer-...oductDetail.do
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Old 03-24-2006, 07:53 PM   #5
'Hamas' Jenkins 'Hamas' Jenkins is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valiant
Add of the price of all the upgrades.. And then look around, It might be cheaper just to buy new...

•AMD Athlon™ 64 3500+
•Double-layer DVD±RW
•200GB 7200RPM hard drive
•PCI Express x16 slot
•1GB of DDR SDRAM
•9-in-1 memory card reader


http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Acer-...oductDetail.do
For about 400 bucks I'd have a system with far more flexibility and future upgradeability. I want to get away from buying a system every four years and get to the point where I can upgrade slowly as time goes by.

I think you seriously underestimate the power of Newegg

DVD-RW DL 40.00 Bucks
DVD-Rom 18.00
512 MB Ram=35.00
Asus MOBO=89
Decent AGP Graphics Card=$50
Antec Case (w/ high quality power supply) $100
250 GB SATA HD=$80

I've already bought the first two items. For around 400 dollars I'd have a system w/ 1.5 GB of ram, 330 GB of storage w/ a P4 running at 3.0GHZ, a DVD-DL, DVD-Rom, and a case with great airflow and room for future upgrades. The ASUS MOBO would also let me overclock the processor, and the room for extra fans will still keep the system stable.

With that said, I appreciate the input. The big thing that I'd like to know (that I currently don't) is how much a Socket 478 system will bottleneck me in the future.
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Old 04-01-2006, 04:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'Hamas' Jenkins
For about 400 bucks I'd have a system with far more flexibility and future upgradeability. I want to get away from buying a system every four years and get to the point where I can upgrade slowly as time goes by.

I think you seriously underestimate the power of Newegg

DVD-RW DL 40.00 Bucks
DVD-Rom 18.00
512 MB Ram=35.00
Asus MOBO=89
Decent AGP Graphics Card=$50
Antec Case (w/ high quality power supply) $100
250 GB SATA HD=$80

I've already bought the first two items. For around 400 dollars I'd have a system w/ 1.5 GB of ram, 330 GB of storage w/ a P4 running at 3.0GHZ, a DVD-DL, DVD-Rom, and a case with great airflow and room for future upgrades. The ASUS MOBO would also let me overclock the processor, and the room for extra fans will still keep the system stable.

With that said, I appreciate the input. The big thing that I'd like to know (that I currently don't) is how much a Socket 478 system will bottleneck me in the future.

You can buy a Socket 478 P4 Extreme Edition that will run at 3.4 Ghz, with a 2MB L2 cache, but it will cost you. I got a hell of a deal on mine, and it ran me about $600.

A quick google shows they go for an average of $800-$1K.
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Old 04-01-2006, 07:50 PM   #7
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i already have a socket 478 p4 running at 3.0 ghz w/ ht, 800 mhz FSB, and 1MB cache. I don't need the processor.
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Old 04-01-2006, 10:23 PM   #8
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That's not bad at all. The P4 3.4 EE is the fastest you can get for the Socket 478, is all. Yours should be fine for a good while yet.
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Old 04-02-2006, 01:16 PM   #9
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With that being said, can anyone answer my original questions? Please, pretty please
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Old 04-02-2006, 01:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'Hamas' Jenkins
With that being said, can anyone answer my original questions? Please, pretty please
As for your other questions:

1) When I get a new board and install everything, I’m going to have to call Microsoft and ask them to allow me to use XP on this machine since it will “lock” when I switch out the old Dell components. Do they regularly allow this, and what will I have to do on my end in order to complete the switch?

I think they limit you to 1 or two switches. You will have to call M$, and get a code/approval from what others have told me.

2) I’ve heard that the Dell Power Supply for the 3000/4600 series is listed at 250 watts, but actually has a peak about 100 watts over that. Will this PSU be able to run the config I want that is listed below without worrying about burning anything out?

I'm not certain, and can't find any info. However, you should be able to find a more powerful one for cheap with Pricewatch or Newegg.

3) How difficult is removing the processor, and will I have to get a new heat sink?(is the old heat sink a Dell proprietary part)?

Removing a socket 478 is pretty simple. I switched from the 2.4 that came with mine to the new one quite easily. Similar to an old Pentium ZIF IMO. You might take this opportunity to upgrade the heat sink and CPU fan. I would, but I'm a bit obsessed with cooling.

4) If I add a SATA HD, should I, or can I migrate XP onto this instead of the old HD?

JMO, but I've never had much luck in the long term migrating M$ OS's. Fresh Install is the way to go. As for switching to SATA, why not, if cash isn't a problem?

Hope this helps...
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Old 04-02-2006, 06:09 PM   #11
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I feel you on the obsession w/ cooling. I just bought an old power supply on ebay to run two 80 mm fans that I have on top of my A/V receiver that has plenty of clearance. I don't know about the fresh install of XP, primarily b/c I lack the install disk, and I don't wont to drop the bones on a goddamned OS that is going to be obsolete by November anyway.
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Old 04-02-2006, 06:13 PM   #12
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One more thing about the cooling--the Dell heatsink already in there is MASSIVE, and it's all copper w/ a fan, so I wonder how much of an upgrade something like a Zalman fan would really be. On the other hand, if I do pull it, I could probably use some arctic silver compound as a thermal conductor, b/c I've heard great things about it.
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Old 04-02-2006, 06:38 PM   #13
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why the hell are you buying a dvd-rw AND a dvd-rom?
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Old 04-02-2006, 06:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dr00d
why the hell are you buying a dvd-rw AND a dvd-rom?
So I can burn CDs on the fl, use DVD shrink to rip and burn simultaneously, and take some of the DVD load off of the RW drive so that it lasts longer. Seems worth 20 bucks to me.
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Old 04-02-2006, 08:03 PM   #15
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LOL, ok....but I think you waste more than 20 bucks in bad dvd's before you would have replace the drive from over use.
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