#1
...but i have no idea how to start. first off i want to add 1gb of ram and i want to get a new graphics card. thing is i don't the difference between any of them and i don't know how to install them. i have an old dell dimension 8400. it has 1/2 of a gb of ram, a 3 ghz pentium 4 processor and some crappy ati 300x graphics card(super old). i don't want to spend too much because it is coming out of my pocket and my current priority is buying a new amp so this project will have to wait for a little. i was thinking of buying this stick of ram

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7642688&productCategoryId=abcat0506001&type=product& tab=1&id=1134697746464#productdetai l

and this graphics card
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8774249&st=Nvidia&lp=5&type=product&cp=1&id=1204331807508

the thing is i have no idea how to install it and i really don't want to **** up this computer because it will probably be the only one i will have for a while. also i have one last question. do i need to have windows vista to run new games such as diablo III which is coming out soon and if so, if i install windows vista will i lose all of the information on this computer or will everything be the same just a new format?
thanx in advance
Last edited by ironman1478 at Jun 29, 2008,
#2
Quote by ironman1478
...but i have no idea how to start. first off i want to add 1gb of ram and i want to get a new graphics card. thing is i don't the difference between any of them and i don't know how to install them. i have an old dell dimension 8400. it has 1/2 of a gb of ram, a 3 ghz pentium 4 processor and some crappy ati 300x graphics card(super old). i don't want to spend too much because it is coming out of my pocket and my current priority is buying a new amp so this project will have to wait for a little. i was thinking of buying this stick of ram

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=7642688&productCategoryId=abcat0506001&type=product& tab=1&id=1134697746464#productdetai l

and this graphics card
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=8774249&st=Nvidia&lp=5&type=product&cp=1&id=1204331807508

the thing is i have no idea how to install it and i really don't want to **** up this computer because it will probably be the only one i will have for a while. also i have one last question. do i need to have windows vista to run new games such as diablo III which is coming out soon and if so, if i install windows vista will i lose all of the information on this computer or will everything be the same just a new format?
thanx in advance


Both the ram and card are compatable with your motherboard, so those are fine. I would suggest shopping from newegg.com though, prices are much cheaper.

You don't need to upgrade to Vista, and I strongly suggest against it. Games typically support the current and previous operating systems, but I have a feeling that XP will be supported as long as Vista is.

What is your budget? I'll help pick out some things for you...
#3
I'd wait until Diablo was near lunched so you know what specs you have to have, but if the person who is installing windows would do it as an upgrade so you would lose nothing but btw I'd stay away from vista for the time being
#4
i don't want to really run everything on super high or whatever. i just want the games to look decent and run smoothly. i have oblivion right now and even though i love it, it runs very slowly. also for the budget thing i don't really have a budget as long as the graphics card isn't above 200 hundred dollars. my parents will get me the ram but i have to pay for the graphics card.
#5
If you can, find a video card with better RAM. DDR3 or DDR4 would be worlds better than DDR2. A video with faster RAM will always beat a video card with more RAM.
#6
Don't buy off of best buy. You can get everything cheaper on newegg.
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#7
Those parts should work with your machine. If you're not too keen on playing games at a high graphics level, then just stick with XP so you dont have to buy vista which saves you a ton of money there.

I suggest 8800GT over the 8600GT. I also suggest trying websites like newegg.com or tigerdirect.com. It's only about $140.

And rather than just sticking in a 1gb ram, first see if you can find the same ram that is already in the computer and just get another 512mb. Unless you plan on buying 2x1gb, then thats good.

And dont hold your breath on diablo 3, its probably going to be at least another year till it comes out.
"That deaf, dumb, and blind kid sure plays a mean pinball" - the Who
#9
if your mobo is socket 775 get a c2d cpu, if not , get a new computer, your current cpu is BALLS, even upgrading your video card to 4870 wouldnt help, u have pcie or agp vga slots?
Quote by roast
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#10
Quote by Jugthug42
Both the ram and card are compatable with your motherboard, so those are fine. I would suggest shopping from newegg.com though, prices are much cheaper.

You don't need to upgrade to Vista, and I strongly suggest against it. Games typically support the current and previous operating systems, but I have a feeling that XP will be supported as long as Vista is.

What is your budget? I'll help pick out some things for you...

I agree with everything he said, they are compatible, but newegg or tigerdirect or zipzoomfly would be cheaper.

And I think so too, XP should be around for a good long while. Windows 7 will come out in 2009 or 2010, so hopefully that will be something to look forward too.

And don't be scared, I have nearly the same tower, it's not that bad to mod these things. The graphics card is a little more difficult because the ram is basically just find the slot and plug it in. For the graphics card, in the back right of my tower there was a plastic thing holding all the cards in with screws, so you have to know to unscrew that, then the GPU pops right out. Put the new one in, screw the plastic back on, and you're good.
#11
Quote by GuitarManiac09
And I think so too, XP should be around for a good long while. Windows 7 will come out in 2009 or 2010, so hopefully that will be something to look forward too.


Don't expect windows 7 to meet the release date. Like Vista, it's probably going to be pushed back a year or two.
"That deaf, dumb, and blind kid sure plays a mean pinball" - the Who
#12
mysuperpc.com

Read it like the bible. Then go to the forums.
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#13
Quote by dtstuff9
Don't expect windows 7 to meet the release date. Like Vista, it's probably going to be pushed back a year or two.

For some reason I doubt that. I think that after Vista they will have it done on time, if they're late people will just think it's another shitty OS. Plus I saw some sneak peaks in Maximum PC, it looks pretty cool >.<
#14
you guys are so helpful, thanks a million. also thank goodness i don't have to install vista because i hate it with a vengeance. also is there a website or program that could tell me what is and what isn't compatible with my computer?
#15
As someone already said, don't buy from BestBuy. You can get 2GB for less than the 1GB of memory you are looking at from BestBuy. NewEgg.com is usually a good place to find cheap, quality stuff.

In terms of installing the hardware, check http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/dim8400/SM/parts.htm#wp1052308

It's pretty simple... ever play on a console with cartridges? It's just like that. Open case, plug in. Close case.
#16
Quote by ironman1478
you guys are so helpful, thanks a million. also thank goodness i don't have to install vista because i hate it with a vengeance. also is there a website or program that could tell me what is and what isn't compatible with my computer?



Not really, but you can run the DirectX Diagnostic tool to find out all about your computer, including what motherboard you have. From there you can look up the motherboard and see what interfaces it has.

Press Start>Run
In the 'Open:' text field, type dxdiag
Press Ok

Allow the program to run and under 'System Model' your motherboard will be displayed.

Then google that motherboard and read up about it...
#17
okay if you can go to a military base they sell graphics card old ones that is for real cheap trust me if you cant go to newegg go to your nearest bx or px for the miltary base so try going their with someone in the armed forces and get a id card (don't know if you can get one of those i am army brat so dont flame me if you can't) okay pm me if u need help will help
#18
Quote by sparob
okay if you can go to a military base they sell graphics card old ones that is for real cheap trust me if you cant go to newegg go to your nearest bx or px for the miltary base so try going their with someone in the armed forces and get a id card (don't know if you can get one of those i am army brat so dont flame me if you can't) okay pm me if u need help will help


Wow...there wasn't one single period in that post...
#19
Quote by Metalliklok
If you can, find a video card with better RAM. DDR3 or DDR4 would be worlds better than DDR2. A video with faster RAM will always beat a video card with more RAM.

wrong, thats like saying a computer with a 233mhz processor and 8 gig of ram is faster than a core duo system with 1 gig. Faster ram helps but when it comes down to it its up to the gpu itself.

Quote by dtstuff9
Those parts should work with your machine. If you're not too keen on playing games at a high graphics level, then just stick with XP so you dont have to buy vista which saves you a ton of money there.

I suggest 8800GT over the 8600GT. I also suggest trying websites like newegg.com or tigerdirect.com. It's only about $140.

And rather than just sticking in a 1gb ram, first see if you can find the same ram that is already in the computer and just get another 512mb. Unless you plan on buying 2x1gb, then thats good.

And dont hold your breath on diablo 3, its probably going to be at least another year till it comes out.

good card, but judging by the guys specs

a) you wouldnt get anywhere near the 8800GT's max performance because their are bottlenecks all over the place (although he'd still have the card for a new computer later i suppose)

b) by the look of his specs i doubt he even has a pci-e expansion slot. im not familiar with the card hes got but without looking it up im going to assume its an AGP card.

to be honest TS youre way better off with a new computer. im not that familiar with prices in the US but i do know that crytek recently demo'ed their crysis expansion on a $600 PC just to show how cheap great parts are available nowdays.

personally i wouldnt bother pouring money into what youve got, it will just cost you more in the long run, at most i would get a RAM upgrade but after that, decent cpu and gfx upgrades are going to need a new motherboard and psu as well.
#20
these are the specs for my computer except for the hardrive( i upgraded to 150 gigabites)

http://reviews.cnet.com/desktops/dell-dimension-8400-pentium/4507-3118_7-30921157.html

as much as i would love to have a new computer i just don't have the dough to spend on it.

so i am pretty much settled on these two things

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145525

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130318 edit:also is it bad if I have a stick of ram with 3200 and install another one with 5300?
Last edited by ironman1478 at Jun 29, 2008,
#21
Quote by ironman1478
these are the specs for my computer except for the hardrive( i upgraded to 150 gigabites)

http://reviews.cnet.com/desktops/dell-dimension-8400-pentium/4507-3118_7-30921157.html

as much as i would love to have a new computer i just don't have the dough to spend on it.

so i am pretty much settled on these two things

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145525

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130318 edit:also is it bad if I have a stick of ram with 3200 and install another one with 5300?



I asked for the dxdiag log for a reason, it gives us a WHOLE lot more info than that link does...

Don't get different types of ram. If you have two different speeds the faster one will just run at the speed of the slower one. I can't tell you if your mobo even supports PC5300 RAM, because you didn't give me the information I requested.
#22
Quote by Diamond Dave
wrong, thats like saying a computer with a 233mhz processor and 8 gig of ram is faster than a core duo system with 1 gig. Faster ram helps but when it comes down to it its up to the gpu itself.



You seem to be confused. I didn't say "Get 64MB of RAM with DDR4 lol cuz it's faster!" I was just insisting that he really doesn't need one whole gigabyte of DDR2. It would be more effective if he had 512MB or 768MB with at least DDR3. And with a good GPU this would propel it further, as most DDR3/4 cards have more than 128MBit to work with. When 1 gigabyte cards are needed he's gonna be left with 1 gigabyte of slow ass RAM when 1 GB cards of the future have clock speeds and DDR speeds, beyond it. So don't put words in my mouth....err..text..box..thing?