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existing computer upgrade advice please

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hi guys I picked up this pc 2 years ago ... Zoostorm 7877-0314 Business Desktop PC (Intel Core i7-3770 3.9GHz Processor, 16GB DDR3 RAM, 1TB HDD, DVD-RW, USB 2.0, 1x DVI-D, 1x VGA, Intel HD Graphics, … Read More
scaredpassenger Avatar
3m, 1w agoPosted 3 months, 1 week ago
hi guys I picked up this pc 2 years ago ...
Zoostorm 7877-0314 Business Desktop PC (Intel Core i7-3770 3.9GHz Processor, 16GB DDR3 RAM, 1TB HDD, DVD-RW, USB 2.0, 1x DVI-D, 1x VGA, Intel HD Graphics, Windows 7 Professional
I fancy doing some light pc gaming so need a graphics card of some sort, and I wouldn't mind a ssd to speed boot times etc, don't want to spend much more than 150 on the graphics card

I'm not sure what the pc is capable of so hopefully being an i7 it's OK?! any thoughts welcome, thanks
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scaredpassenger Avatar
3m, 1w agoPosted 3 months, 1 week ago
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(1)
Before anyone says anything, the first question to ask is what's the make, model and wattage of the PSU ?

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#1
Before anyone says anything, the first question to ask is what's the make, model and wattage of the PSU ?
#2
Games aren't that demanding on CPU so should be fine. RTS games seem to be more processor reliant.

If you want to dip your toe in the water with gaming then you really should focus on AMD GPUs

Maybe start here and read some reviews from customers.
http://www.ebuyer.com/store/Components/cat/Graphics-Cards-AMD
#3
Even if PSU is crap, 300w or so it'll take a 1050.
#4
jaydeeuk1
Even if PSU is crap, 300w or so it'll take a 1050.


Normally in budget brands they're rated for the system so I wouldn't count on using the over head.
#5
Thats a good i7 and more than capable of pc gaming.

The card will depend on what type of games you want to play, but for £150 a new gtx 1050 ti will be your best choice.

If you need a bit more juice then look at the second hand market for an AMD 390 on GTX 960/970

SSD will greatly improve boot and load times and is a good cheap upgrade to do.

The one thing to check before upgrading is the Power Supply, those zoostorms normally chuck a cheap psu in to save on cost, it may not have enough spare power for your upgrades. You might need to upgrade that before adding a card.

Edited By: poison3k on Jan 18, 2017 15:54
#6
Check airflow in your case, PSU rating. I assume you're using the stock heatsink and fan with an additional GPU your case will increase in heat so extra case fans might be needed.
#7
I'll be honest I have no idea but being as it's a zoostorm setup I assume it will be a cheapo generic 350w piece of crap so I suppose suggestions for a budget 500/500w psu too

thanks for the input (I will update with actual psu figures when I'm back in my office!)
#8
New PSU almost certainly, and a decent brand - check the 12 rail outputs against the gfx card you want.

That AMD gfx mentioned may be too power hungry for you, but a RX470 may be over budget, perhaps look at a RX460 OC, or an nVidea.

Just about ANY SSD will give a big boost in perceived system speed, just dont keep anything precious like family photos on it, they can die totally and irretrievably with no warning (had it happen).

64GB is enough to install the OS, programs and a few games, and keep the HDD for documents, photos etc., that is how I run my systems; if you are flush, get a 250GB, mine is less than 1/2 full after a year, as it is videos etc, that take up space, and they are all on big HDDs.
#9
If it's as much as 350W then you don't need to replace it, it'll happily run an RX 460 (or GTX 1050, although I wouldn't go for a low end nVidia card as they lack freesync support).
#10
You have enough RAM and your CPU are fine.

For budget of £150, the best GPU you can probably buy is a second hand GTX 970, which will play most games on ultra settings at 60 FPS at 1080p.

As mentioned, you will probably need a new PSU as well, probably talking about £50 minimum for a decent one.
#11
Rabmac1
You have enough RAM and your CPU are fine.
For budget of £150, the best GPU you can probably buy is a second hand GTX 970, which will play most games on ultra settings at 60 FPS at 1080p.
As mentioned, you will probably need a new PSU as well, probably talking about £50 minimum for a decent one.
Or a second hand AMD 290X, I have one with a i7 3770 and I played Witcher 3 at 1080p at max settings, to fit for £160 about 2 years ago. For an SSD I would just search on here for a 250GB+ one. Many good ones for £50-60.
#12
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
You have enough RAM and your CPU are fine.
For budget of £150, the best GPU you can probably buy is a second hand GTX 970, which will play most games on ultra settings at 60 FPS at 1080p.
As mentioned, you will probably need a new PSU as well, probably talking about £50 minimum for a decent one.
Or a second hand AMD 290X, I have one with a i7 3770 and I played Witcher 3 at 1080p at max settings, to fit for £160 about 2 years ago. For an SSD I would just search on here for a 250GB+ one. Many good ones for £50-60.
I think the 290X might run a bit hot for a standard Zoo Storm case as they run @ 90c on the VRMs. Ref 290x might be alright with the blower cranked up but non refs are just going to dump that heat straight into the case which might upset the mobo VRMs and stock CPU heatsink/fan temps.
#13
kester76
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
You have enough RAM and your CPU are fine.
For budget of £150, the best GPU you can probably buy is a second hand GTX 970, which will play most games on ultra settings at 60 FPS at 1080p.
As mentioned, you will probably need a new PSU as well, probably talking about £50 minimum for a decent one.
Or a second hand AMD 290X, I have one with a i7 3770 and I played Witcher 3 at 1080p at max settings, to fit for £160 about 2 years ago. For an SSD I would just search on here for a 250GB+ one. Many good ones for £50-60.
I think the 290X might run a bit hot for a standard Zoo Storm case as they run @ 90c on the VRMs. Ref 290x might be alright with the blower cranked up but non refs are just going to dump that heat straight into the case which might upset the mobo VRMs and stock CPU heatsink/fan temps.
I have mine in a smallish Asus business desktop, but it's a reference 290X one.
#14
MIDURIX
kester76
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
You have enough RAM and your CPU are fine.
For budget of £150, the best GPU you can probably buy is a second hand GTX 970, which will play most games on ultra settings at 60 FPS at 1080p.
As mentioned, you will probably need a new PSU as well, probably talking about £50 minimum for a decent one.
Or a second hand AMD 290X, I have one with a i7 3770 and I played Witcher 3 at 1080p at max settings, to fit for £160 about 2 years ago. For an SSD I would just search on here for a 250GB+ one. Many good ones for £50-60.
I think the 290X might run a bit hot for a standard Zoo Storm case as they run @ 90c on the VRMs. Ref 290x might be alright with the blower cranked up but non refs are just going to dump that heat straight into the case which might upset the mobo VRMs and stock CPU heatsink/fan temps.
I have mine in a smallish Asus business desktop, but it's a reference 290X one.
Better case and the ref blowers are noisy but better for throwing the heat out. I've a 290 ref and it runs about 59c up to 90c when under full load with stock fan profile. I use a 200mm fan above the mobo vrms to keep those suckers cool. Gotta love AMD :) with a 3rd party blower you're just chucking the heat back into the case oO
#15
OK little update the psu is absolute garbage max 250w :(

motherboard is a micro GA-H61M-DS2, mated to a dogdoo non brand fan auc0912d which looks like an Intel fan copy by the looks of things
#16
think it's worth swapping the fan out to a artic freezer 7 pro rev.2 or something along those lines? again don't want to spend silly money!
#17
also of note there are no case fans fitted at all presently, so will get a lower front fan for intake and a top rear fan for exhaust assuming that's going to be the most efficient fan system? really clueless here though! lol
#18
scaredpassenger
OK little update the psu is absolute garbage max 250w :(
motherboard is a micro GA-H61M-DS2, mated to a dogdoo non brand fan auc0912d which looks like an Intel fan copy by the looks of things
I'd swap case, PSU and either switch to 212 evo or AIO cooler. If you're going for a AIO try to get some airflow across your mobo bridges and vrms.
#19
[quote=Rabmac1]You have enough RAM and your CPU are fine.
For budget of £150, the best GPU you can probably buy is a second hand GTX 970, which will play most games on ultra settings at 60 FPS at 1080p.
R9 390 if you can get one, as they have aged better and perform quite a bit ahead of the 970 in the vast majority of recent games.
#20
scaredpassenger
think it's worth swapping the fan out to a artic freezer 7 pro rev.2 or something along those lines? again don't want to spend silly money!
I would say no, unless you want to reduce notice more than improve gaming performance. Upgrade PSU and graphics, then see how noise things are. Spending £20 on a cpu cooler seem a bit pointless atm.
#21
OK and for the psu I take it It doesn't matter how much higher the ampage is on various outputs as long as they are greater than the outgoing psu?
#22
scaredpassenger
also of note there are no case fans fitted at all presently, so will get a lower front fan for intake and a top rear fan for exhaust assuming that's going to be the most efficient fan system? really clueless here though! lol
I don't get why you want to do this. If you upgrade PSU, add SSD and put in a 1050 you are hardly going to be increasing the heat in the case so why throw money down the drain on airflow in the case?
#23
scaredpassenger
OK and for the psu I take it It doesn't matter how much higher the ampage is on various outputs as long as they are greater than the outgoing psu?
If you go for any budget 550W PSU from a major supplier it's going to be better than what you currently have.
#24
I've worked out my psu will need to be at least 250w (working with swapping to a new gtx 1050ti 4gb card as I'm not a fan of 2nd hand goods) and a 120gb ssd, I should imagine a 450w / 500w psu would be good, something like the cooler Master i500?
#26
scaredpassenger
I've worked out my psu will need to be at least 250w (working with swapping to a new gtx 1050ti 4gb card as I'm not a fan of 2nd hand goods) and a 120gb ssd, I should imagine a 450w / 500w psu would be good, something like the cooler Master i500?
120GB is tiny , will almost half fill with one game. I have always bought second hand graphics cards, but up to you.
#27
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
#28
and also is it worth updating to Windows 10?
#29
scaredpassenger
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
120GB is plenty for all your programs and OS. I recommend putting games on your mechanical HDD as the storage is far cheaper and you won't see an increase in gaming performance by putting them on SSD.
#30
scaredpassenger
and also is it worth updating to Windows 10?
Use the windows magnifier, so you can genuinely claim to use "assistive technologies" - for gaming, with a GPU capable of at least DX12 FL11_0 (Nvidia cards from Fermi core onwards, ATI cards using GCN core, which for ATI now means any that are on a non-legacy driver, since support for pre-GCN cards was dropped a while back), then it may be worth having Win10
#31
thanks for all your assistance everyone I will update once I've upgraded shortly!!
#32
Rabmac1
scaredpassenger
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
120GB is plenty for all your programs and OS. I recommend putting games on your mechanical HDD as the storage is far cheaper and you won't see an increase in gaming performance by putting them on SSD.
Yes you will. Load times will decrease massively. I have everything on my 250GB ssd apart from on downloads and personal video/pictures. For the sake of saving £15-20 for 120GB it isn't worth it.
#33
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
scaredpassenger
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
120GB is plenty for all your programs and OS. I recommend putting games on your mechanical HDD as the storage is far cheaper and you won't see an increase in gaming performance by putting them on SSD.
Yes you will. Load times will decrease massively. I have everything on my 250GB ssd apart from on downloads and personal video/pictures. For the sake of saving £15-20 for 120GB it isn't worth it.
I agree that load times will increase but that is not gaming performance (i.e. fps or graphics) is it?
#34
Rabmac1
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
scaredpassenger
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
120GB is plenty for all your programs and OS. I recommend putting games on your mechanical HDD as the storage is far cheaper and you won't see an increase in gaming performance by putting them on SSD.
Yes you will. Load times will decrease massively. I have everything on my 250GB ssd apart from on downloads and personal video/pictures. For the sake of saving £15-20 for 120GB it isn't worth it.
I agree that load times will increase but that is not gaming performance (i.e. fps or graphics) is it?
SSDs can stop or lower hitching also, which causes from rate issues. I consider that and load time to both be performance. A 20 second load instead of a 5 second one can sometime make me stop playing a game altogether.
#35
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
scaredpassenger
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
120GB is plenty for all your programs and OS. I recommend putting games on your mechanical HDD as the storage is far cheaper and you won't see an increase in gaming performance by putting them on SSD.
Yes you will. Load times will decrease massively. I have everything on my 250GB ssd apart from on downloads and personal video/pictures. For the sake of saving £15-20 for 120GB it isn't worth it.
I agree that load times will increase but that is not gaming performance (i.e. fps or graphics) is it?
SSDs can stop or lower hitching also, which causes from rate issues. I consider that and load time to both be performance. A 20 second load instead of a 5 second one can sometime make me stop playing a game altogether.
I am running 2 HDD setup at the moment. I have a Samsung 850 Evo and Western Digital Blue. I have all my games apart from Skyrim on my HDD and I can honestly say that I have never encountered hitching and all my games run smoothly. Personally, I don't find loading times an issue and I personally would not upgrade from 250GB SSD to 1TB SSD just to have faster load times for my games, as I could get a far better upgrade for that money.
#36
Rabmac1
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
MIDURIX
Rabmac1
scaredpassenger
it's been a long time since the last desktop I built (10 years) so I'm well out of the loop as to what is current etc and what does what, ssd wise I just assumed that would be for os only, didnt even think about putting games on one, I take it the main benefit would be quicker load times?
120GB is plenty for all your programs and OS. I recommend putting games on your mechanical HDD as the storage is far cheaper and you won't see an increase in gaming performance by putting them on SSD.
Yes you will. Load times will decrease massively. I have everything on my 250GB ssd apart from on downloads and personal video/pictures. For the sake of saving £15-20 for 120GB it isn't worth it.
I agree that load times will increase but that is not gaming performance (i.e. fps or graphics) is it?
SSDs can stop or lower hitching also, which causes from rate issues. I consider that and load time to both be performance. A 20 second load instead of a 5 second one can sometime make me stop playing a game altogether.
I am running 2 HDD setup at the moment. I have a Samsung 850 Evo and Western Digital Blue. I have all my games apart from Skyrim on my HDD and I can honestly say that I have never encountered hitching and all my games run smoothly. Personally, I don't find loading times an issue and I personally would not upgrade from 250GB SSD to 1TB SSD just to have faster load times for my games, as I could get a far better upgrade for that money.
op said 128gb ssd, I was advising 256gb. Lots of games benefit massively by having an ssd. Saves in Witcher 2 load in about 10 seconds, or nearly 30 with standard hdd.
#37
I'll be going with a larger ssd after all the comments!!
#38
I have two SSD's a 128GB for my OS (bought in more expensive times) and a 480GB (£80 Christmas 2015) for games, then a 500GB hdd for files, works well enough.

Separation means if I need to wipe the OS drive I don't need to redownload all the games again either (although arguably partitioning could do this but is less robust).

Edited By: dcx_badass on Jan 21, 2017 14:53
#39
just out of curiosity will I need to purchase any additional cables or fitments for the psu, ssd and graphics card?
#40
scaredpassenger
just out of curiosity will I need to purchase any additional cables or fitments for the psu, ssd and graphics card?
Screws for the HDD/SSD and SATA data cables as pre built systems normally don't include spares.

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