View Full Version : Athlon? Duron? And on what motherboard???

10-24-2000, 10:25 PM
Ok, I am looking to upgrade my machine. Currently, I am running a 400Mhz k6-2 Processor on an FIC Va503+ Motherboard. I have been very happy with it, but it is starting to get a little slow for my taste.

I have purchased a new harddrive for my upgrade, a Western Digital 20Gig 7200RPM harddrive, and I am planning on keeping the same amount of RAM (128Megs)

I would, however, like to upgrade my Video Card as well...

Anyways, I want something around the 800-900Mhz range as far as processors go.. Would one recommend purchasing a Duron 700Mhz processor and overclocking to 850 (which I heard one can overclock Duron processors safely to 950Mhz) or should I purchase an Athlon (Thunderbird?) processor of the 800-900Mhz speed? I know I want to go with AMD, for sure...

Secondly, what type of motherboard is recommended for this? All I want is an ATX style board with no integrated devices (soundcard, video card, nic, etc) because I have a tower that I want to put the board into... So the jumper-style printer and com ports would be preferred rather than the ports built onto the board. That's annoying.

So what's best? What BUS speed should I be looking for? How much cache? I'm looking for a balance between price and quality. I don't want to spend more than $300 for the motherboard AND the processor, if possible. Any recommended vendors?

Also, what type of video card would one recommend for a gamer/graphics user? I heard the ATI All-in-Wonder cards are good.. Any recommended cards that are good for the money? Right now I have a Diamond Viper 550. I suppose an AGP video card would be the way to go... With 32Megs of GRAM?

Anyways, any pointers would be appreciated. Please reply to this message http://www.PCGuide.com/ubb/smile.gif

11-11-2000, 12:11 AM
I have recently upgraded to a Duron 750 on a Gigabyte ga7zm Motherboard and from an AMD k6/2 450 and am extremely happy with the speed increase.

Motherboards - The 2 manufactures i'd recommend are Gigabyte or Asus - the Asus has excellent overclocking potential.

CPU if you go for a socket A(slot a being phased out by AMD) Motherboard they you can start off with a Duron processor and at a later date when prices drop switch to an Athlon.
Speed wise the Duron is just slightly slower than a pentium III and better at games processing. Checkout www.tomshardware.com (http://www.tomshardware.com) for info.

Graphic card - this is a bit more subjective, Some people swear by there Voodoo3 cards and others there Nvidia's. Personally i have had both a Voodoo3 3500 and a Riva Tnt2 and found them both to be adequate. For a cheap card go for the Riva tnt2 M64 for a more expensive card go for a Geforce card - Guillemot 3dProphet II gets good reviews.

Hope this is of some help.

Paleo Pete
11-11-2000, 10:17 AM
Overclocking is not a good idea unless you KNOW what you're doing and are prepared to shell out the bucks for a new CPU and/or other components if heat kills them, and are willing to deal with overall system instability. If you want a 800-900MHz CPU, get one to begin with. The "I heard you can" syndrome doesn't mention the other 900 horror stories...

Overclocking (http://www.pcguide.com/opt/oc/index.htm) article in the PC Guide explains several aspects of overclocking that must be considered if you even think about it.

Bus speed-Most newer boards support 100MHz and 133MHz main bus speeds, the bus speed you use depends on the bus speed and multiplier required by the CPU you decide on. If you get the motherboard first, get one that supports both. Cache- get as much as is available on a board that suits your other criteria.

For motherboards, you'll have to check the specs on them, ASUS, Epox, Tyan, Gigabyte and several others all have very good reputations, and the specs should tell you whether they have any integrated components. CSO (http://www.computersurplusoutlet.com) and Pricewatch (http://www.pricewatch.com) both have just about any component you want at better prices than most local suppliers can offer, but you have to wait a week or so for shipping in most cases. CSO is dependable, I have been dealing with them for about 3 years.

Video cards are mostly a matter of personal preference, several good ones are available now that all get good reviews, check out a few of the hardware sites on the net that have reviews and comparisons, and pick the one you think suits you.

If you had everything...Where would you put it?

Computer Information Links (http://www.geocities.com/paleopete/)

11-12-2000, 05:00 PM
Thank you very much. Very helpful responses. I'm looking forward to a healthy upgrade!!


11-13-2000, 03:31 AM
hi dpeck , i m planning on an upgrading too .
I will be going with AMD Duron 700 . As for
motherboard , i will get Gigabyte 7ZX
(recommended board for Athlon/Duron by many
hardware review site and also AMD itself ).
well, as far as i know , Duron 700 can only
be overclocked to 735MHz maximum
(7x multiplier;105 MHz bus frequency)
(experimented by a particular hardware site)
Duron 700 is a good enough cpu for business
applications and gaming . anyway , u should
check out many hardware site for reviews on
the stuff u wish to get before upgrading yr system.

trying to be a computer geek http://www.PCGuide.com/ubb/cool.gif

[This message has been edited by amateur (edited 11-13-2000).]

[This message has been edited by amateur (edited 11-13-2000).]