Upgrading Part 1

Every couple of years or so, I embark on a wonderful journey to learn about the marvels of modern PC technology. This experience usually begins when something on my computer breaks, isnt working correctly, or a game that I want to get wont run at optimal levels with my hardware.

Yes friends, its time for a computer upgrade!

My computer has this annoying problem that it wont always turn on after I turn it off. Sometimes it will work and other times I need to unplug the power cord, wait a few minute, plug the power cord back in, and then try to start it. I suspected that the power supply is slowly ending its life or couldn’t handle the current load. So my initial purchase was an Antec TruePower 2.0 550 Watt power supply to replace my 300W Antec PSU. My PC was underpowered when I did my last upgrade, so I knew Id eventually have to do this replacement.

Then I started thinking which we all know is a dangerous thing. Why not upgrade my AMD 2700+ machine while Im at it? Im a big fan of Mwave and Newegg for computer hardware purchases. Both are reliable and with reasonably fast order processing and shipping. And their prices are very good. I like Mwaves motherboard/CPU combinations and theyve been providing my motherboards for roughly ten years.

I decided to purchase an AMD Athlon 64 4000+ 939 socket motherboard. There are all sorts of new sockets for CPUs available these days since I made my last purchase. The sockets are how the CPU connects to the motherboard and since I knew nothing about the 939 motherboards, a little research was in order.

Let me first point out that doing an individual upgrade and piecing together parts probably is not the cheapest way to go. The individual components I purchase are generally going to be more expensive when everything is added up and compared to how much Dell would charge me for the same thing. I just enjoy making each individual choice and customizing my PC as much as possible.

I am a big fan of Asus motherboards. There are plenty of other fine motherboard vendors out there, but I know that I can rely on Asus boards, so thats all Ive purchased over the years. So heres where the fun began. I needed to choose from six different Asus 939 socket motherboard variations.

And learn about something called SLI. And nForce 4 and Via motherboard bios. And PCI express. Read what I learned in part 2!

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