Need some help with my Computer...

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Hey I just got NFS:MW Up and running thanks to Chris_Knows :)) but it is a bit choppy, I have a decently new computer, only about 6 months old. It has a 340 Intel Celeron D Processor. It's a Hewlett Packard. Currently nothing has been done to it in terms of upping its performance. Also has 512 MB of RAM. I need to know which part will speed it up? The processor or the RAM or both? The graphics of the ingame also aren't that great, although I rather fix the choppiness first. So if anyone could help me on some decently cheap parts to fix this problem I would greatly appreciate it. Of course if I find it is too much moeny I will just wait for option B and build a gaming comp. Thanks

posted by  Pythias

It's a box computer....from HP?....what model is it? With full specs, it would be a little easier to diagnose what's going wrong...

posted by  dodgerforlife

This was happening to me too...lower the graphics a bit, or exit all of your programs before starting it...Congrats on the game though :thumbs:

posted by  chris_knows

Could be graphics card .......

posted by  windsonian

And chris knows thanks me lol. So technically I started the whole sha-bang-a-bang :laughing:

posted by  newyorker

400 POSTS WHOOT WHOOT :hi:

posted by  newyorker

True...I just told him what you told me :wink2:

posted by  chris_knows

The system works. :thumbs:

posted by  newyorker

Thats what I figured but I need help on findin a decent one and either someone show me/tell me how to install it if it aint hard or a place with free installation.

posted by  Pythias

Installation's easy, as long as you're happy to open up your computer (possible warranty void etc..)

posted by  windsonian

Nothings wrong my comp just isnt up to par and I need to know what I need to modify on it to get it there. The comp is an HP Pavilion a1010n around 7 months old specs are.-

Product name
HP Pavilion a1010n - Celeron D 340 2.93 GHz


RAM installed 512 MB DDR SDRAM

Hard drive 200 GB I believe, or 160

Graphics processor Intel 845GV

-More or less the info I gave you, thanks for any help guys

posted by  Pythias

K then please help me find a decent one better than mine :ohcrap:

posted by  Pythias

Get a PCI express 128 video card..or a 256..could go for 1024 ram and not 512..might be costly check out tigerdirect and newegg

posted by  newyorker

There are tons of PC numbers for the 1024 RAM what kind should I get?

posted by  Pythias

DDR ram by kingston is pretty cheap. If you want the good stuff its like $400

posted by  newyorker

Mhmmm 400 thats too much, but where it says Memory/DDR/PC/PC3200 or some other number how do I know wat number I want? If I could get somethin around 200 I think thatd be best.

posted by  Pythias

1) Check your BIOS to see if the maximum memory amount has been allocated to graphics...

2) Alt+Ctrl+Del before opening the game, see how many system resources are being used

3) Kill any unnecessary programs


And, if you want more memory, find a stick of 512mb PC2700 DDR RAM - matches your current stick. Kingston Valueram has always treated me well, and I run an Asus motherboard, same as what is in your machine ;)

posted by  dodgerforlife

I did number 2 for the most part, how do I check my BIOS, also why a 512mb PC2700 DDR RAM, if it is exactly what I have why would I want that... I want to improve my performance....

posted by  Pythias

checking BIOS is done at startup, it will prompt you, either F1 or Del....

just go through it until you see something about Video/Graphics Memory..should be up at 64.


Reason for PC2700 512? because thats the memory you have in there already, so it will match it, meaning it would work correctly, and give you 1024mb of ram, or a gig.

posted by  dodgerforlife

i'd also ditch the celeron. blech...

your main problem is definitely the video, however.

BEFORE YOU BUY A NEW VIDEO CARD, i would suggest opening the case up and seeing if your computer even has an AGP8x or PCI express slot. i can't even begin to tell you how many dell, hp, compaq, and gateway machines come into the store i work at (brand-freakin-new) that don't even have those slots. typically they've got 3 or so PCI slots, and two ram slots. and since you say your ram is ddr-2700 and a celeron, you might have one of those POS cheapy machines. if so you're SOL, i'm afraid.

*edit*
just looked up your machine on the 'net, and it seems like that is the case. no AGP8x or pci express, just two free pci slots. you could get a radeon 9200 128mb which would give you better performance over the built-in video, but the main hindrance there is the PCI bus, which only runs at 33mhz and is just simply to slow for real gaming. sorry to say that, but if you post a pic of your comp's motherboard it'd be easy to tell if the info i found was accurate or not.

posted by  enron fever

95Civic told me to get these parts

http://www.spartantech.com/product.asp?m1=pw&pid=ATIR9200SE128OEM
http://www.linemicro.com/product.php?id=14122

Tell me waht you guys think, n thanks again!

posted by  Pythias

the ram is OK, but the video card won't work in your computer. as i stated before, it seems like your machine doesn't have any other internal slots aside from PCI slots. i would open up your machine and look before buying anything. this would also help to see if you have two 256mb sticks or a single 512. never buy anything unless you've visually confirmed that it will work.

posted by  enron fever

Well there is a slight problem.... First, having tried to "not" sell these, the board that the 1010n was working off of was a cheap one that HP used for budget PCs. It came with 512MB Mem. but there were some downsides.
The memory is a good idea, you can put up to 2g with the Intel 845GV chipset. Downside, the integrated graphics will support up to 64 MB allocated video memory... not good.

Also the the 9200 card mentioned here:http://www.spartantech.com/product.asp?m1=pw&pid=ATIR9200SE128OEM
I don't think would work, as it is a AGP card and to the best of my memory, the board that the 1010n was built on did not have an AGP slot, I believe only 3 pci slots. Sorry

(to check open up the machine, AGP should be a brown slot ((Rarely it can be cream color, but not white)))

posted by  Voda48

He's running a celeron in a HP beige box, what makes you think his computer even has a PCI express slot? My advice is a 9200SE PCI like everyone stated. But that is still mediocre, if you really want something that will make games look good, you will probaly have to fork out alot of money, like the whole deal; Motherboard, Video Card, Ram, CPU. Although you can keep the case, unless its a MATX case.

But if you want to just increase performance without spending too much, i agree with the other members; just get a stick of ram or a video card. But, Need for Speed Most Wanted does look pretty damn good at Max settings. :D

My setup:
AMD 64 X2 4600+
ATi X1800XT (got it as a gift from friend who works at computer shop, i would never pay 600 dollars for a video card)
OCZ Platinum Low Latency Ram PC3200 2x1024 sticks
Maxtor Diamondmax 10Plus 16MB cache 250gb harddrive (x2)
Asus Nforce 4 A8N-SLi
Lian Li V1000 case
OCZ Power Stream 500W PSU

posted by  aerith

you got an x1800 as a gift? i got a PIII 750 Slot-1 as a gift from the place i freakin WORK at and i was stoked....

lucky bastard.

but as i've said a few times now, that machine really isn't worth doing anything too. what i would recommend is getting simply a new motherboard. the rest of the components (ram, cpu, etc etc) are just run-of-the-mill PC junk, so if you get the right socket-style motherboard (i would assume mini-atx style) with a PCI-E or AGP8x slot, you should be able to just swap it in place.

and in the future do some research before buying a machine. a cheap one might look tempting, but if you can't upgrade it later on then your money is essentially wasted.

on a semi-related note, there seems to be a consensus around this forum that there is a performance jump between cards with 128mb v-ram and 256mb v-ram. that's just simply not true. the speed of the ram and the power of the GPU are the main factors in gfx-card performance. the amount of v-ram just simply designates how many pixels/colors the card can handle. a 256mb card can support higher res, higher color games than a 128mb card, but if those two cards have the same ram-type and GPU, there will be no performance difference between the two on typical 1024x768 settings.

there is also the subject of memory sharing. some of the newer nvidia and ati cards have false-advertised v-ram amounts. cards sold with either ATI's "HyperMemory" or nVidia's "TurboCache" technologies typically only have half the advertised v-ram on-card. the rest is leeched from the main system memory. this was common back in the AGP2x days, and it was a bad idea then and it certainly isn't a better idea now. there are absolutely no upsides to cards with this technology.

so just do some research before buying anything computer-related. could save you alot of money and hassle in the future.

posted by  enron fever

Sorry for kinda hijacking this thread a bit Pythis, but all this talk has made me wonder if I could do anything to boost my PC's performance...I got it in October, and it's an HP Pavillion zv6000-something...can't find the exact model number anywhere :doh:...Voda's helping me out on speeding it up, but I was wondering if I can put in some new hardware?

posted by  chris_knows

only thing you can do to a laptop is increase memory and HD capacity/speed. in very rare cases the CPU is removable, which allows for upgradeability, but opening them up can be a HUGE pain in the ass and is often not worth it as faster cpu's run hotter and since most new laptops are already expensive firestarters, it's not a good idea.

posted by  enron fever

the ram i found i think went well with his computer because it's an oem and they are your basic typical ram. The video card. My bad pythias i did tell you basically what everyone said the video card i just gave you wasn't pci was vga. If you'll be online later tonight i'll do a search for you and find the same deal just for pci. They said the same thing i said get a 128 radeon 9200se.

posted by  95civicdima

:clap: damn son, that is a nice setup.... wish my friend would give me that card... I could buy it for about $450, but I won't. I love the 64bit dual core... they rock my world. If given the choice, I would have one right now, but I am woking with an intel bundle I got last year. P4 with 915PBL board, Xp pro, and "goodies" for $215 w/ shipping. I couldn't refuse.

my setup: (now 1 year old :banghead: )
550 Intel P4 w/ hyperthreading
915PBL
NVidia 6800 PCI-E (hate the card, time for a new one)
1 gig PC-4200, soon to be 2gig
Maxtor 160 SATA
Case is custom made... but is shell of Lian Li (think about going to Liquid Nitrogen....)
Antec Blue 430 power supply.

Built all of it for under $900

How much did your motherboard and pro cost?

posted by  Voda48

ummmm....no. vga is the connection type, of which the card does have, but that's not why it won't work in his system. the card you shows him was an AGP card (and quite a crappy one, if we're honest), but the fact that it had an vga monitor connection has nothing to do with why it won't work.

posted by  enron fever

Yea VGA ...Good video card just installed it for a friend 2 weeks ago it works awesome and gives great quality. He plays FF11 so that requires a lot of video memory and it handles well so your just biased against it that's your loss. The VGA monitor connection is fine depending on what you have it won't matter he won't be using either way. I do believe that his model has one VGA port so if you want to look at the specs and prove me wrong i invite it.

posted by  95civicdima

The thing some of you lacked to remember as well is that Iam on a Very tight budget, and upgrading these 2 things for this cheap is fine for me. Maybe it won't make the game perfect, but it will make it much better, motherboard, all that is alot more than what I want to be paying, this is only a temporary thing anyway as in the comming months prolly around 4 months or so from now I will have a much higher budget and will be building a gaming computer, this comp is our primary desktop so I am not going to put alot of money into it. I'm saving for a car now thats why the budget is tight.

posted by  Pythias

I have another point to add; Pixel shaders, and Pipelines are also important. Most of the current gen of Video cards use Pixel Shader 3.0, although ATi has better integration of it. And Pipelines are pretty important in determining which card to get. But keep in mind some video cards with a smaller amount of pipelines may utilize them more efficiently then other video cards with more pipelines.

I don't work for ATi, but their current generation of Video cards do really kick ass. Most of them are faster then their Nvidia competitors except the top of the line 7800GTX 512. And they feature Avivo, which decodes AND encodes H.264 video natively which Nvidia's cards don't offer (at least the encoding). And they encode video files up to 5 times faster then a CPU can do it. It took me 3-5 minutes to encode 1.5 gb of video.

I didnt get the X1800XT as a gift completely; the guy owed me some money, but he didnt have any cash; instead he just gave me the video card.

posted by  aerith

If you knew anything about computers; you would know that the 9200se is below low end. It's a year old; which is a long time in the computer world. Its based on graphics processor that is around 3 years old, and its 128mb memory isnt even fully utilized; my old video card was a 9700pro with 128mb of memory and it's older then the 9200se, also they are both based on the same graphics processor; it was around 1.5-3 times faster then the 9200SE. Do you even know what "SE" stands for? It stands for "Slow Edition". It is a very slow card; still faster then what Pythias has mind you; which is a built on motherboard piece of crap.

And Final Fantasy 11 is a baby game compared to Half Life 2, Farcry, Doom III, and Battlefield II. All of these games; the 9200SE will barely be able to run at minimum settings.

posted by  aerith

Don't get OEM crap stuff. Go get Kingston ValueRam, it will cost like 5-7 dollars more for a much more reliable and faster ram.

posted by  aerith

Motherboard costs; 220 CDN, rougly 190 USD
Processor costs; 850 CDN, rougly 769 USD

posted by  aerith

Mental note, don't do chemistry and type at same time. Liquid cooled :banghead: Lol liquid nitrogen....hahaha

posted by  Voda48

Just saw my buddies new computer..... wow

Anywasy he had a 64bit dual core as well, asked him the same question, he got his for $575 US, but he does work in the field of computers so we get nice dis. Anyways the shocker is that he has the same graphics card, cand was actualy going to put in two for 1024mb of vid card mem..... :drool: Worsst part yet, it is tax deductible (sp?) for him too!

posted by  Voda48

HAHAHAHA!!! ok buddy keep yapping away thinking i'm so retard that don't know shit...i got nothing to prove and don't intend on trying. I recommend it to someone on a budget. For 34 bucks i think that's a good video card. I told him when i recommended it that it's not for hardcore gaming. SO DON'T QUESTIONS SOMETHING YOU HAVE NO INPUT ON remember assuming makes an ASS out of U and ME...mainly you. i appreciate the 5 seconds little pep talk about absolutly nothing except you TRYING to prove you know anything...congrats?

posted by  95civicdima

First I'd say get a better processor. At least some kind of Pentium 4. Then RAM, and then youll definitely need a better graphics card.

posted by  PontiacFan27

see, now we could've used this input about 30 posts ago...

posted by  enron fever

Okkk so in the end I think I'm still going with those two things, altho for 5-7 dollars more if you can find me a better ram then do so and link me to it. I don't know much at all about going about looking for the specific ram I need for my computer, for 5-7 dollars mroe yes I would do that. The budget is 100$ for the other stick of RAM and the Video Card, that 100 includes shipping, so far I think those two deals he gave me are the best, if anyone can show something better then please do so.

posted by  Pythias

go to www.pricewatch.com and find what you are looking for

posted by  Voda48

you can buy that card that 95civic linked you if you want, but it won't work in your machine. i thought we'd made that pretty clear.

posted by  enron fever

No after reading through wat everyone said I was a little confused, wat would you recommend then for some kind of cheap Video card upgrade, if any?

posted by  Pythias

Well then is this any better? http://www.ld-technology.com/one_prod.php?pid=02147

posted by  Pythias

the ram isn't the issue. it's the video card.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16814103155&ATT=Video+Ca rds&CMP=OTC-Froogle&srccode=cii_14110944&cpncode=08-3502371-2

that is really the only option for pci video cards these days. you could get an mx-4000, but they are even bigger POS's.

the ram doesn't really matter. that machine of yours isn't worth doing anything expensive too anyways, and when you do get a new machine it won't use ddr-2700, so you won't be able to use your old ram anyways. i would go as bargain basin as possible with that machine and save the rest of the money towards a non-sucky one.

posted by  enron fever

Thats what I'm trying to do, but the video card would fix the choppiness too? At points where there is alot going on in the game it slows down even more, I thought that would be the ram.

posted by  Pythias

could be ram, but more likely the video card.

posted by  windsonian

it probably won't fix it entirely, as others have pointed out PCI video cards stopped being developed years ago for good reason. the standard PCI bus is just too slow to cope with today's modern games.

that video card is a VAST improvement over any built-in video, however, so frame-rate should clean up nicely, although i would run it with all options either "off" or "low", and a 640x480 res. it won't look as pretty, but you will get the maximum performance out of it.

so in short, it probably won't eliminate the choppiness, but it will reduce the severity of them to a degree.

i would also go through and turn off all the programs you have running in your system tray that aren't vital (anti-virus, anti-spyware, etc etc.). those can build up quickly.

posted by  enron fever

Well, first of all: the way you type make you sound like an idiot, i didnt know all knowledgeable people completely ignore grammar and spelling. The way you type reflects on how you speak, which in turn reflects upon your intelligence. Learn to talk first.

Second of all: The 9200SE is not a good buy for 34 dollars. For a tiny bit more he could get a 9200TC which will put his extra half a gig of ram to better use. Or a 9550 for 25 dollars more which is a heck of a lot faster then the 9200. This is assuming he has an AGP slot. You can't even tell the difference between VGA, PCI, or AGP.



What you meant to say was; AGP. VGA is the connector coming out the back of the card. It connects the video card to the monitor and has nothing to do to where the video card is plugged in. VGA sends out an analog signal, most commonly used for CRT monitors. On the other hand the DVI port is digital and is normally used for LCD's or other digital supported monitors.

Lastly: the way you put it before; you made it sound like it was a pretty good video card because it can run Final Fantasy 11. I don't know anything huh? I spend my weekends working in a computer store assembling computers professionally; why don't you go tell my boss that pays me 13 USD/hour that i don't know anything? So, before you start trying to ASSUME that i don't know anything, learn to type.

posted by  aerith

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