Upgrading Motherboard and CPU. opinions please.

To ‘prepare’ my computer for the inevitable purchase of Doom 3 when it comes out, I am thinking of buying a new Mobo and CPU.

I am thinking of buying as high-end as possible. I have an atx case, a very good PSU (bought from Quitepc.com), a Geforce 4, a Soundblaster live, windows XP (home)

I have a gigabyte of RAM, but it’s single data rate ram. I am guessing this will be woefully inadequate for whatever CPU and mobo I buy. Should I replace my RAM with ddr?

Should I go for intel or AMD (I am on AMD at the mo)?

Are there any important factors I should be aware of before doing this (apart from XP issues, I asked about that in GQ)?

If you’re getting a new motherboard with a good chip, I don’t think you’re going to have much choice in the matter of RAM. You’re going to have upgrade to DDR.

Personally, I’m a huge AMD fanboy. They deliver the same performance for a much lower cost. Go with the 3000+ or so, if you want.

However, if you like the Pentiums, get a Pentium 4 with a FSB of 800MHz. You’ll kick yourself later if you go for the plain 533MHz.

And when you buy a motherboard, remember that you do get what you pay for. If you buy cheap parts, you’re going to end up with a shoddy product. Spend big now, and save yourself some future headaches.

I wouldn’t normally think about getting intel, but somewhere I read that the Via motherboards (needed by AMD I assume) have issues with Sound Blaster sound cards (My DVDs have a sort of clicking sound every now and then)

Here’s an article comparing Pentium and Athlon when the heat sink fails:
CPUs, thermal failure
The Pentiums come out unharmed, while the Athlons show spectacular failure.

The article was written nearly 2 years ago, so AMD may have come up with some design changes in the meantime. Anyway it tells you some things to look out for when choosing a CPU and motherboard.

Plus there are some pictures of stuff burning up, which is always fun! :slight_smile:

AMD CPUs have a thermal diode on chip that shuts it down if it reaches a certain temperature.

Anyway, what’s your budget?

If you want a kick ass system on a budget, and you’re willing to tweak, your best bet is an abit nf7-s 2.0 motherboard with an athlon XP t-bred B 1700+ DLT3C chip. With that setup and a decent heat sink (you can get an AX-7 for like $20 now) you can easily hit 3000+ speeds with a $50 cpu.

If you’re going that route, corsair 3200c2 ram is fairly cheap now - $90-100 for 512.