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Posted: 1/21/2006 11:37:23 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/21/2006 11:41:55 AM EDT by spinaBifida]
Hello All. I've recently given some thought to upgrading my computer. Here are my current specs:

Base processor and speed
AMD Athlon(B) XP 3200+ 2.20 GHz
Advanced 400 MHz front side bus
Socket A

Chipset:
Via KM400A

Motherboard:
ASUS name: A7V8Z-LA
HP name: Kelut-GL6E

1GB RAM (max allowed)
Speed supported: PC2700 MB/sec
Type: 184 pin, DDR1-333 SDRAM

Hard drive
200 GB Ultra DMA
7200 rpm

VisionTek Xtasy Radeon 9600 Pro

I want to get as much performance from this system as I possibly can. The only games I play are Battlefield 2 and BF2SF. Right now, I have the lighting options turned to medium and a few other things. If I try to go any higher, I get really bad lag. For example, where I'm running along toward a building, the screen freezes, and a few seconds later, the screen unfreezes, and I've slammed into the building by that time. This even happens on servers where I have what I consider a low ping (58 on the ar15 server when it's empty. I was practicing flying when the screen froze, and when it unfroze, I piledrived into the ground). What, if any, upgrades to my computer should I make to be able to run the highest BF2 and BF2SF settings?
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 11:47:46 AM EDT
Definately video card. You are going to have an AGP slot with that machine, so that kind of limits the upgradability for you. The two fastest cards that you are going to be able to get are the 6800 Ultra and the Radeon X850XT PE .

It all depends on your budget. Those two cards in AGP are getting harder and harder to find, and the price really isnt dropping any. I would estimate that a new 6800 Ultra will run about $350, and a new X850XT PE will run around the same. There are lower cards that you can install, but if you are limited with upgrades to begin with, you might as well max it out, cause the next upgrade is going to be a new machine.

I got a 6800 Ultra I will sell for $225 plus shipping, if interested
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 1:22:25 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/21/2006 1:31:18 PM EDT by REDHORSE]
* Your MB supports up to 2 gigs according to several sites. Adding at least another 512 or gig would help smooth things out (2 gigs total would be more than enough). You only have two DDR slots, so I don't know if you have a free slot available.

I'm surprised that your MB doesn't support/run you memory at PC3200 speeds.

* A SATA drive would make game loading much faster.

* Your sound card isn't on the list that does NOT support Hardware Audio Renderer option. So, check (Turn On) the Hardware Audio Renderer option in the Audio properties.


Now, my CPU is about the same as yours, I only have 1 gig RAM, I do run a SATA drive, I have an older Radeon card (8500DV) than yours with only 64 megs of ram. I don't have any of the problems your having. But, I probably have my details turned down a bit from yours. I do have a Radeon 9600 XT running on my other machine and it plays smoothly on that one also.

What resolution are you playing at?

What Radeon drivers are you using?

More RAM would help, but I don't think it would help in your situation. You have something else going on. Your CPU is more than fine enough for BF2. Video card should be running smoothly, but may not have all the eye candy that the newer cards can display.

Could be you have some of your video settings set too high. Take a screenshot of your video settings in BF2. Could more than likely be a video driver issue.

Also check your BIOS, there are several settings that can improve or hurt your video card performance. What BIOS version are you running?

Download CPU-Z and do a screenprint of the CPU & memory timing/speed screens, so we can take a look at it.



Newest Audio driver (11/05) Realtek AC'97 Audio Driver 5.10.0.5730

A7V8X-LA Motherboard BIOS ver 3.15



Link Posted: 1/21/2006 2:06:43 PM EDT
game should run fine off those specs.
I run bf2 with a 1.7GHz Athlon, 1GB RAM, and 9600XT on med-high settings just fine.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:44:49 PM EDT
I forgot to mention the system I have is a HP Pavilion A720N, if that helps. One thing I noticed on the link to the computer specs is the specs for the motherboard:

"Support up to maximum 2 GB memory (PC manufacturer's maximum memory may differ)" So, the motherboard supports up to 2GB RAM yet HP seems to have castrated it somehow and only allows a gig. Why would they do this? and is there any way to change it?

The specs for my computer are at this link:

h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?dlc=en&tool=softwareCategory&softwareitem=pv-31037-1&lc=en&product=431077&os=228&cc=us&docname=c00069442#c00069442_doc
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:53:40 PM EDT
check the tweak guides (google search that) to see the optimum settings. you can cut back a bit in some settings w/o a real dip in the look of the game.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 3:55:10 PM EDT
everything has already been said
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 6:29:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By adair_usmc:
Definately video card. You are going to have an AGP slot with that machine, so that kind of limits the upgradability for you. The two fastest cards that you are going to be able to get are the 6800 Ultra and the Radeon X850XT PE .

It all depends on your budget. Those two cards in AGP are getting harder and harder to find, and the price really isnt dropping any. I would estimate that a new 6800 Ultra will run about $350, and a new X850XT PE will run around the same. There are lower cards that you can install, but if you are limited with upgrades to begin with, you might as well max it out, cause the next upgrade is going to be a new machine.

I got a 6800 Ultra I will sell for $225 plus shipping, if interested

That's very nice of you to offer, but I'm afraid I can't take you up on it. Parents are very leery about sending anonymous people on the internet money. Mom would bitch about me sending money to you.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 6:30:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By spinaBifida:

Originally Posted By adair_usmc:
Definately video card. You are going to have an AGP slot with that machine, so that kind of limits the upgradability for you. The two fastest cards that you are going to be able to get are the 6800 Ultra and the Radeon X850XT PE .

It all depends on your budget. Those two cards in AGP are getting harder and harder to find, and the price really isnt dropping any. I would estimate that a new 6800 Ultra will run about $350, and a new X850XT PE will run around the same. There are lower cards that you can install, but if you are limited with upgrades to begin with, you might as well max it out, cause the next upgrade is going to be a new machine.

I got a 6800 Ultra I will sell for $225 plus shipping, if interested

That's very nice of you to offer, but I'm afraid I can't take you up on it. Parents are very leery about sending anonymous people on the internet money. Mom would bitch about me sending money to you.



No worries.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 6:49:48 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/21/2006 6:54:01 PM EDT by spinaBifida]

Originally Posted By REDHORSE:

Download CPU-Z and do a screenprint of the CPU & memory timing/speed screens, so we can take a look at it.

Sorry I couldn't make them any bigger, hee hee (photobucket didn't size them down as much as I would like).






Link Posted: 1/21/2006 7:08:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/21/2006 7:15:18 PM EDT by spinaBifida]
Here's what my graphic's settings are in game:

Link Posted: 1/21/2006 7:19:59 PM EDT
upgrade to at least 1gb of ram and you will be set
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 7:22:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/21/2006 7:25:54 PM EDT by uglygun]
wanna boost performance a bit?

I'd turn the dynamic lighting and dynamic shadows to the low levels.


Those settings are actually pretty respectable. Have you gotten FRAPS and looked to see what your in game FPS is?



It looks like your computer can handle PC3200 DDR ram but you've got miss matched timings, one slot is at PC2700 and the other is at PC3200.


This can cause the memory speed for the faster memory to default down to the speed of the slower memory. Currently PC3200 RAM is at like an all time low, my current machine has 2 gigs in it that I bought for a whopping 200 bucks with decent timings.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 7:27:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cruze5:
upgrade to at least 1gb of ram and you will be set

Actually, I do have 1GB (2X512). I got an extra Kingston 512MB stick for Christmas and the 720 comes with 512 stock.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 7:33:54 PM EDT
I'll get FRAPS readings either late Sunday or sometime Monday. Gonna go to bed, church in the morning and then work.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 11:39:27 PM EDT
Yea looks pretty good.

AGP is set to 8X, you can mess with the Aperature size (bump it up).

Your BIOS version is behind. 3.11 versus 3.15 (newest)

I would see if you can trade your 512 DDRs for a match set of 1 Gb DDR PC3200. Computer shows usually have a vender who will buy your old RAM and you could get new 1 Gb DDR X 2 PC3200 for maybe less than $100 out of pocket with the trade in.

Terrain can be set to Medium. You will actually see the enemy better in the lower settings. As there are less things (bushes/ grass, etc..) that they can hide behind.
Link Posted: 1/21/2006 11:43:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By REDHORSE:


Your BIOS version is behind. 3.11 versus 3.15 (newest)



If it aint broke, DO NOT FIX IT.
Link Posted: 1/22/2006 12:46:33 AM EDT

Originally Posted By adair_usmc:

Originally Posted By REDHORSE:
Your BIOS version is behind. 3.11 versus 3.15 (newest)



If it aint broke, DO NOT FIX IT.



New BIOS versions could have fixed some AGP or Memory problems, that could resolve his problem.

Ver 3.15 notes don't reflect anything significant. But, I saw something that stated an earlier BIOS version fixing an AGP issue.

Link Posted: 1/23/2006 5:12:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By uglygun:
It looks like your computer can handle PC3200 DDR ram but you've got miss matched timings, one slot is at PC2700 and the other is at PC3200.


This can cause the memory speed for the faster memory to default down to the speed of the slower memory. Currently PC3200 RAM is at like an all time low, my current machine has 2 gigs in it that I bought for a whopping 200 bucks with decent timings.



I just now noticed the mismatched timings. I will definately change that to PC3200 ASAP. It looks like the other upgrade I will do is a new vid card. Thanks for all the help.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 6:02:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/23/2006 6:05:24 PM EDT by sharky30]
sure it's not an intermittent bit of network lag?
using a wireless network?
it seriously seems more like lag than a hardware performance issue
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