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How bad is my PC?
15-Oct-20 5:46pm
#1
AlphakirA
GameTZ Subscriber 550 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (9) Has Written 1 Review

Alright, about 10 years ago my buddy custom built me a PC. Over the years I've tinkered with it and I think it's ok for my needs, but I'm seeing some incredible Amazon renewed deals I'm considering.

It's been a loooooong time since I've kept up with PC knowledge. So here's my specs, judge them harshly and let me know how much (if at all?) a sub $300 PCs would make a difference. Thanks!

Windows 7 Ultimate
Intel Xeon - X3220 @2.40 GHz (4 core?)
Intel Core 2 Duo T7700 - 800 MHz Bus
8 GB DDR2 Ram
GeForce 9800 GT

I would be bringing my SSDs to a new PC for whatever that's worth.

15-Oct-20 5:47pm
#2
AlphakirA
GameTZ Subscriber 550 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (9) Has Written 1 Review

This is an example of what I was looking at:

https://www.amazon.c...

Would it be worth upgrading?
15-Oct-20 6:27pm
#3
sa330206
450 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader This user is on the site NOW (6 minutes ago)

What are you trying to do with the PC? Is it just for internet, ms office, etc? Or do you want to play newer games? The one you linked looks to have an integrated video card so that's definitely not good. I'm not sure it would even be worth upgrading, I don't know how customizable that HP is. The biggest thing I see slowing you down is the DDR2 memory but I am not an expert. I have a PC with similar specs as you (except Win 10) and it works perfectly fine for internet and streaming. It will also play older games fine.
15-Oct-20 6:28pm
#4
sa330206
450 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader This user is on the site NOW (6 minutes ago)

Also - the linked PC doesn't even have HDMI based on the pictures.
15-Oct-20 6:37pm
#5
Slickriven
GameTZ Subscriber Gold Good Trader Has Written 1 Review

I'd sort of suggest not going with that linked PC. It appears to be a 'retired' company workstation for some office type job. I bought my mom something similar (also an HP) a few years back and while it's capable of supporting basic functionality like emails, surfing the net, even playing some older/smaller games (like solitaire) it's not great for much else.
As sa330206 mentioned, there's no HDMI port, so that limits you to display port - not bad, but is noteworthy. Also even if you wanted to, the lower height form factor makes a discrete GPU card more challenging, if even possible.
$200 is a 'great' price, but you're fully getting what you pay for and that's not 'great'.

15-Oct-20 6:49pm
#6
Tony
Double Gold Good Trader

I use www.cpubenchmark.net to compare CPU performance. They provide a value they call CPU Mark to rate performance - higher is better.

"CPU Benchmark results ("Baselines") were gathered from users' submissions to the PassMark web site as well as from internal testing. PerformanceTest conducts eight different tests and then averages the results together to determine the CPU Mark rating for a system."

From their lists:

The Xeon X3220 has a value of 1819 and the Intel Core 2 Duo has a value of 818.

The Core i5 3470 has a value of 4,643.
15-Oct-20 9:35pm
#7
AlphakirA
GameTZ Subscriber 550 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (9) Has Written 1 Review

Excellent info from everyone so far, thanks so much. Keep it coming!

I'll be avoiding that PC u listed, but it was an example of about a half dozen or so I've seen.

Is it safe to assume I should avoid these 'office' refurbs? I mainly use it for downloading definitely not illegal things, browsing and standard office type stuff for work. My wife uses it for picture editing and the like. But really, I'd probably use it more for other things such as games if it allowed it.
15-Oct-20 11:35pm
#8
GamersLyf
Gold Good Trader

https://techguided.c...

The $300 build here really isn't too bad and gives you some flexibility to upgrade later. Don't be intimidated if you've never built your own PC, it's really not that bad. I built my first PC 2 years ago with the help of YouTube. I looked up a video of a full build to use as a step-by-step guide then looked up videos of my specific components when I needed more info.
15-Oct-20 11:42pm
#9
RiverCityRansom2
Double Gold Good Trader

They had a killer deal on a HP gaming tower during black friday last year..thinking it was like $350-400. Literally just plug in your monitor and go.

Hang tough to see what comes around black friday if u can wait it out. Sure there will be deals online.
16-Oct-20 12:26pm
#10
John
GameTZ Subscriber GameTZ Full Moderator 400 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (13)

AlphakirA wrote:
Intel Xeon - X3220 @2.40 GHz (4 core?) Intel Core 2 Duo T7700 - 800 MHz Bus
I'm confused -- what am I missing here? You've listed two different CPUs. Which of these is actually in your PC? Or are you talking about 2 PCs?

What Tony said is a good guide for CPUs -- check the PassMark score to do a quick comparison. The two CPUs you listed are quite slow these days.

The machine you linked has a good "mid-range" CPU. Anything between 4000-5000 on the PassMark is kinda your normal work PC these days.

I'm not sure why people are so concerned about a PC with a DP and not an HDMI port. DP is newer and is commonly replacing HDMI as the default for most new PCs. Many gamers now run DP-to-DP for their new monitors and such. And, heck, a DP-to-HDMI cable is literally like $10 shipped at Amazon.

So, it not having an HDMI port is not a big deal to me. In fact, if I had to choose if it had just one HDMI or just one DP, I'd probably pick DP.

So, it has VGA and a DP -- so you can do dual monitors with it pretty easily.

Don't get me wrong -- it's not some top of the line gaming PC by any stretch. But it'd beat the heck out of your old PC probably.

I've got a pile of Core 2 Duo PCs sitting in a closet here just waiting for someone to haul them off to recycling for me. They are pretty much worthless to me. But I'd happily take that i5 PC and use it as a workstation and everyone would be happy. So, for $200, it's a pretty good step up, IMO. (I'd rather it was a Dell OptiPlex instead of an HP Compaq, but that's another issue.)

EDIT: One last thing... These days, I don't like PCs without USB3 connections. So, I'd probably pass on that HP just for that reason along. For $300, I think you should be able to find a refurb with similar or better specs that has a couple USB3 ports.

- John...
16-Oct-20 12:33pm
#11
AlphakirA
GameTZ Subscriber 550 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (9) Has Written 1 Review

@GamersLyf

I swapped out parts and moved things around plenty, building a PC is obviously more involved but it doesn't intimidate me, I just don't know if I have the time with kids and other work related things. But I'll check that site out, thanks.

@RiverCityRansom2 That may be my best route. It's not a necessity, but I guess I can wait to see what BF brings this year.
16-Oct-20 12:40pm
#12
AlphakirA
GameTZ Subscriber 550 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (9) Has Written 1 Review

@John I have no idea. I never replaced my CPU, that's just the readings I'm getting from 'My Computer' as well as a tinkering program I have. I honestly couldn't tell you why it has two different names, I'm just listing what I think is important.

Thanks for all of the other info. I believe my monitor is either DVI or VGA so im not overly concerned with HDMI. If I remember correctly I have a connector from the video card to it anyway. I don't need a newer monitor as I mainly use it for simple tasks and it's never been a hindrance.

Getting back to the CPU, any idea why my pc would list two different ones if I've never replaced it?
16-Oct-20 2:15pm
#13
Tony
Double Gold Good Trader

The two CPU identities confused me, too. I thought you were giving one from the My Computer info and one from a spec. sheet or a tag on the computer.

When you go into Settings/System/About it shows both?
17-Oct-20 9:55am
#14
John
GameTZ Subscriber GameTZ Full Moderator 400 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (13)

No problem, we'll get it figured out. Follow what Tony said and let us know what it says there for the CPU. yes
17-Oct-20 4:41pm
#15
AlphakirA
GameTZ Subscriber 550 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (9) Has Written 1 Review

In system it says Intel (R) Xeon (R) CPU X3220 @2.40 GHz

In a program I have called FreshDiagnose it states the second (Intel Core 2) is the "model". So I'm assuming the former is the correct info.
17-Oct-20 6:53pm
#16
John
GameTZ Subscriber GameTZ Full Moderator 400 Trade Quintuple Gold Good Trader Gold Global Trader (13)

Ok, so it is probably the X3220. As Tony said, that scores a 1819 on the PassMark benchmark. I was saying about that a "middle of the road" PC these days -- so, your average "work" PC -- is usually around 4000-5000 for a PassMark score. So, that gives some perspective on speed.

And you said your drive(s) is an SSD already, correct?

If it were me -- and I didn't really want to pay for a high-end gaming PC -- I think you could put around $300 or so into something and come out pretty good. You could either find a used ready-to-go retired PC that would probably be fine. Or, heck, that link that @GamersLyf gave showed a budget gaming PC for only $300. And that was including buying an SSD -- which you don't need -- so you could do it for even less. (Although that Ryzen 3 3200G doesn't appear to be available at Amazon right now, so some other CPU might be better at this point.)

yes

How bad is my PC?