Does Anyone Foresee a Problem?

TFM

Golden Member
Dec 8, 2003
1,314
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Hello, i'm brand new to these boards, but from what i've read i'm seeing a wealth of knowledge. So let me get right down to it. Here's my current setup:
Intel Cel 1.7
512 PC 133 SDRAM
40 GB HD
5.1 Sound Card
ATI 9200 SE Video
Windows XP Home

When i play various games (including Madden 2004 of all graphics intensive games) i get choppiness in the games and they aren't much fun. I play Call of Duty with the graphics turned way down, and still have times when my fps is very low. After research, i realized that the 9200 SE cards are basically junk and i royally wasted my money. In order to combat this, i have recently purchased a Radeon 9800 Pro Video Card and am waiting to receive it. When it gets here, here will be my new system:
Intel Cel 1.7
512 PC 133 SDRAM
40 GB HD
5.1 Sound Card
ATI 9800 Pro Video
Windows XP Home

Will the video upgrade be enough to turn this into a decent gaming machine that will be able to handle the likes of CoD with the graphics turned up, and HL2 when it comes out? Any suggestions or comments would be VERY appreciated. Thanks in advance!
 

ginfest

Golden Member
Feb 22, 2000
1,927
3
81
IMO the Celeron/PC133 based memory will "hold back" the 9800. I think you'll see a definite diff in your games between the 9200SE and 9800 but the perf bottleneck will be the CPU/memory bandwidth.
If $$$ is a concern you'd probably be better off going with a 9600 class vc and putting the extra into a better cpu and or mem, assuming your mainboard is compatable.


Mike G
 

screw3d

Diamond Member
Nov 6, 2001
6,906
1
76
I agree with Ginfest. If I were you I'd have gotten a better CPU + m/b, and an mid-range video card for that. Your R9800 Pro would be very underutilized as the main bottleneck would be on the mb + CPU.

The Celeron was never meant to be a gamer's CPU.. it even gets a good whoop-ass from a lower-clocked Duron.
 

Amorphus

Diamond Member
Mar 31, 2003
5,561
1
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don't splurge all out if you don't have the money - to conserve, you could put your investment towards a better CPU first (the lower-range pentium 4s, like 1.6-2ghz are cheaper now, but make sure they're pin-compatible with your Celeron. i.e. Pentium 4s are Socket 478. If your Celeron is a Slot 1, don't upgrade to a P4, as the best you can do will be a P3), and then buy a 9600Pro (XT is more money for not that much more performance).

If you already have the 9800pro, though, that video card should last you a fairly long time (just like the 9700pro, which came out over a year ago and still whoops a good amount of a55). 3d games of tomorrow should be fine (with the 9600pro, also, too)

So yeah, I would strongly recommend a CPU upgrade. if you have th money, upgrade your CPU/motherboard/memory combination, but that will run you around $150-200, and if you don't have a copy of Windows handy, it'll run you even higher to $300.
 

TFM

Golden Member
Dec 8, 2003
1,314
0
0
THANKS! Though here's my situation and why i have the Celeron and NOT the P4 i had anticipated getting. I was saving up my money to get a nice system when my old system decided it didn't want to work anymore (HD issues) and i was sick of the onboard video anyway. So i went to upgrade the HD and video in a cheap way ... but had too many issues. My bro-in-law (who was helping with the whole process) got frustrated, and just bought me a new mobo / case (too long a story to explain why). Well - the mobo is a transition board. It will handle P4 up to 2.8 (i think) and will take both standard SDRAM and DDR SDRAM. However, b/c i wasn't ready money-wise, i compromised and got the celeron chip, the 9200SE, and held onto my old SDRAM (which is why he bought the board he did so i wouldn't have to upgrade).

It was at this point that i really felt games would work with the system, but after reading on the 9200SE, i realized that it was complete junk. So it became my first upgrade item. Once i have the 9800 PRO, i assume that video is now something i will not have to worry about upgrading for a while.

I'm slowly trying to build my dream system 1 piece at a time. I just can't justify to my wife very well spending a lot of money at one time. So i'll have to lay low for a bit probably, and from there i'll take your suggestions of CPU first and then RAM.

Now, is this logical? Or would it be best to sell the 9800 PRO when it gets here and stick with the 9200 SE and buy a new processor?

Thanks again for your input!

*Edit - I found the model number for the mobo and linked to it on Shuttle's site for anyone interested
 

Fern

Elite Member
Sep 30, 2003
26,907
173
106
I think your plan is logical. You should see a great increase in gaming performance by going up to the 9800pro (don't sell it; don't use the 9200se, sell it). Yes you will have bootleneck, but your financial situation mandates that you will have one somewhere (otherwise you must simultaniously upgrade all components). Prices for the cpu and ram that will fit in your mobo will drop even more by next year
 

poppyq

Senior member
Oct 20, 2003
255
0
0
I'd say stick with the 9800 cause if you try selling it you're going to take a loss.
 

TFM

Golden Member
Dec 8, 2003
1,314
0
0
Update:
I now have the card installed, but i still have hiccups and poor framerates at times (though not nearly as bad as before so far as i can tell). Would putting in a 512 stick of Mushkin PC2100 RAM help the performance a great deal? (i have a deal on the table right now to possibly get my hands on some). Or is the CPU the main bottleneck i'm seeing?

Thanks again!
 

blodhi74

Diamond Member
Mar 28, 2003
4,566
1
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the biggest bottle neck is the CPU+mobo combo.... I had a system with 1.4 Ghz TB,1GB ram and an G4mx with 32mb ram .... went to 9700pro and the FPS did go up up but not to a degree to make a difference ..... upgraded the system with a Nforce 2 mobo and 512 DDR ram (2700 only )and the difference was quite dramatic
before 3Dmark 2001 was 8450 and now without changing any other copmponent I get 14728
total cost $250.00