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Gaming Computer Advice Needed


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I'm relatively new to the PC gaming world and i need some advice. A few years ago I bought an iBUYPOWER Gamer Power 540D3 Desktop PC Athlon II X2 250 (3.0GHz) 4GB DDR3 500GB HDD Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit PC for a few hundred bucks off of Walmart.com strictly for playing SWTOR . i figured it would be enough for the one game but unfortunately it doesn't run the game well without all of the graphics setting set to low and even with them set low its still kind of buggy. This Past Christmas i got a Steam gift card and i'm hooked i bought Kotor 1 and 2 as well as some other older Star wars games and the PC runs them ok . I would like to get into PC gaming more and play newer games but my PC isn't capable of doing this as it is so my question is does anyone know of upgrades i can make to this particular PC so I can run games like Battlefield 4 for example on highest graphics settings. i priced out parts for a PC build I found online and its over $600 id rather just replace some parts in the PC i already have it would be cheaper. Any help is appreciated. :) Edited by Pantegadetallica
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It depends on your case and your power supply...


Assuming it is a standard size ATX case and it has a 400W or greater power supply, then you'll be fine.


First, it depends on your budget, but the standard recommendation I make is for an Intel Core i5 CPU. It doesn't have to be one of the fancy K models, you don't sound like a power user, so something like this:



$185 at the time I posted this.


For a motherboard, I've used ASUS for a long time and been happy with them:



$57 at the time I posted this.


You can spend 4 times that amount, but you likely won't notice the difference.


You can use your existing memory in that motherboard as well.


Video card, you'll need one, the built in graphics are terrible.



$210 at the time I posted this with a $30 mail in rebate offered.


Now you might well say, "wait a minute, that is $422 after rebate! that isn't cheap!"


Perhaps not, but it will give you performance to last you a good long time (multiple years). You can spend less, but then upgrade sooner.


If you really, really don't want to spend $452, the fall back option would be an Intel Core i3:



$119 at the time I posted this.


And for a video card:



$139 at the time I posted this with a $20 mail in rebate


The CPU has 2 cores instead of 4, and that video card is half the performance (or less) than the first one... but then your total cost (same motherboard) is $295 after rebate.




In my professional opinion, nothing AMD offers in the CPU dept is worth buying if you're a gamer. Many people are happy with AMD, but the performance isn't there. The Intel i5 beats everything AMD has to offer when playing almost any game, the i3 beats 90% of what AMD offers. Both use FAR less power than AMD does as well, paying you back over time.

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Side note: If you don't have experience in taking apart and putting back together a computer, expect to spend awhile figuring out how to make the change. It isn't rocket science, but give it a good solid weekend.


Also, you should reinstall Windows from scratch, changing a motherboard is a big change and in my experience, unless changing to a similar chipset, causes too many problems. Windows in theory will adapt and load drivers, but it never is the same.


Finally... do yourself a massive favor and buy a SSD. Even a small one is fine for the boot drive (put SWTOR on it, big load time difference).




$109 buys you a 256GB SSD that is very fast, reliable, and will last you a good long while unless you install 50 games on it. :) (then you'll run out of room!)


Use the existing 500GB drive for bulk data storage, but put your OS and games on the SSD.

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