I’m definitely more of a software person than a hardware person. I can wade knee-deep through Registry settings, but throw me into a PC box and if it’s anything more complicated than installing a hard drive or swapping over RAM, I’m a bit lost.
So I’m trying to figure out if the older of my computers (“Tintin”) can have a cheap CPU upgrade using the current motherboard. (It’s already had a hard drive and RAM upgrade.)
The specs say it’s a Gigabyte GA-M61SME-S2, currently with an Athlon 64 3500 (2.2 GHz) CPU, and I believe from looking at msinfo32 that the BIOS is version F2. (Which I suppose I could upgrade if I’m brave enough.)
The CPU support list from Gigabyte suggests the existing CPU is using an AM2 socket.
From the looks of it the fastest CPU supported using the same socket and the F1 BIOS is the Athlon 64 X2 6000+ 3GHz, indicative cost A$128. I note that it burns 125W compared to the 62W of the old one. Does that mean it would run hotter? Possible cooling implications for the overall PC?
There’s also the Athlon 64 X2 5600+ 3GHz, almost as fast, at 89W, indicative cost A$119.
If I update to BIOS version F10A, I can go the Athlon X2 7750+ at 2.7GHz at 95W, $114.
(Costs from a providers listed on StaticIce; I’ve never used them, so just trying to get a rough idea of costs.)
So is it just as simple as going and buying one of these, pulling the old one out and plugging the new one in?
And what pitfalls should I be aware of?