So a funny thing happens any time my good friend and coworker Ryan decides that he's going to upgrade his computer... it instantly makes me think that it's time to upgrade mine. This has been a trandition since our early years in college when he'd buy the top of the line gear, I'd wait 2 months and buy the next newest cheaper than he bought his stuff for. And around and around we would go.
Fast-forward a few years and I've realized that the last performance upgrade I made on my machine was over 3 years ago, and that was an already couple year old model video card! This realization comes of course, right as Ryan tells me he's upgrading to new gear. So back to my old stomping grounds of HardOCP.com and other tech-minded geek websites I went to read up on all I had missed since leaving the upper-end of computer hardware for cycling several years ago.
Wow have things changed. I knew that dual-core AMD's were out, I knew PCI-E had taken over the realm of video cards, and DDR now had numbers after it. Well, I know it in passing, but not in detail of what all was out there. And let me tell you, it's mind boggling!
So now I'm in the position of either:
A) Spending just enough to get a very solid and worth while upgrade from my current system (specs to be listed below), but have to worry about not having too much head-room for future performance needs.
B) Splurging on a few things while keeping the budget reasonable and sane. Still far surpassing what I'm running on now, which has finally started to show its age on a few new computer games I have.
C) Go all out, drain what extra funds I have laying around and then some and build a rock solid performing machine that will likely not need any additional upgrades for another couple of years.
Current machine specs (for those other geeks out there):
AMD XP 2600+ (Barton Core) OC'ed @ 2.0Ghz (2800+ speed)
1 GIG DDR 3200 (512 x2)
ATI 9800 Pro 128mb
EPoX EP-8RDA+ nForce2 Ultra 400
120GB WD HDD & 250GB WD HDD
DVD-RW & CD-RW
420W Antec PSU
Creative Audigy 2 Audio
Current Plans(ish) for the Upgrade:
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4000+ (Brisbane Core)
2 GIG DDR2 6400 (1GIG x2)
nVidia 6800GT or GTS or 8800GTS 320mb (price $100 - $300!)
nVidia nForce 570 or 590 board??