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CPU upgrade question

 
 
artix
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      01-01-2008, 07:01 PM
Hi All,

I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!

--
artix
http://www.abstractart.ws _Abstract Art Directory_
 
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John Weiss
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      01-01-2008, 07:39 PM
"artix" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote...
>
> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD Duron
> 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon. The problem
> is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum supported CPU speed.
> It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this is because when the
> motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the fastest AMD CPU available. How
> can I find out the maximum CPU speed my motherboard can handle? The
> motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset.
> Thanks!


A Google search on "GA7ZM motherboard main board" established quickly that it is
a Gigabyte board. After going to Gigabyte I found the CPU support list at
http://www.gigabyte.com.tw/Support/M...ProductID=1366

It appears you can use Palomino and earlier Athlons up to 200 MHz FSB, which
include the AthlonXP 1500+ (Palomino 1.8 micron), Athlon 1.xG (200 MHz FSB
versions), and Durons up to 1.3G.

You may also want to update your BIOS to Ffc if it is not already there:
http://www.gigabyte.com.tw/Support/M...ProductID=1366


 
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Pen
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      01-01-2008, 07:48 PM
artix wrote:
> Hi All,
>
> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
> Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
> The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
> supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
> is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
> fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
> motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
> VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!
>

Go to the Gigabyte web site. 1500 is max.
http://tw.giga-byte.com/Support/Moth...ProductID=1366
 
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Guest
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      01-01-2008, 07:56 PM
"artix" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message news:477a8e74$0$2084$(E-Mail Removed) ...
> Hi All,
>
> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
> Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
> The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
> supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
> is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
> fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
> motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
> VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!


Short answer is, don't throw good money after bad. Upgrading
to a 1.3 or 1.5GHz CPU isn't going to make that system suitable
for anything it can't already handle (web surfing, email, letter
writing etc).

Save your money until you can make a substantial upgrade,
including a new motherboard, memory and CPU. Just my $02.


 
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gfretwell@aol.com
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      01-01-2008, 08:23 PM
On Tue, 1 Jan 2008 11:56:15 -0800, <(E-Mail Removed)>
wrote:

>> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
>> Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
>> The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
>> supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
>> is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
>> fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
>> motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
>> VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!

>
>Short answer is, don't throw good money after bad. Upgrading
>to a 1.3 or 1.5GHz CPU isn't going to make that system suitable
>for anything it can't already handle (web surfing, email, letter
>writing etc).
>
>Save your money until you can make a substantial upgrade,
>including a new motherboard, memory and CPU. Just my $02.
>

If you aren't into gaming or video editing I doubt you will really be
using all that blazing speed. I went from a 660mz 120m RAM machine to
a 3.5gz 1g RAM and I barely noticed. I save a whopping second or so
when compressing MP3s, that is about all I have seen.
 
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jaster
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      01-01-2008, 11:08 PM
On Tue, 01 Jan 2008 20:01:44 +0100, artix thoughfully wrote:

> Hi All,
>
> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
> Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
> The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
> supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
> is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
> fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
> motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
> VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!


I don't think it's worth the trouble to upgrade those components if
you're in the states, Canada or England. For $300US you could get newer
model with 1.8Gz cpu, 40Gb Sata HD based computer from HP.

Try eBay to buy older cpu/motherboard combos. I'd even sell you my XP2000
+ Socket A, 1GB memory and case without FD, HD or video for $100US plus
shipping, add another $100 gets you the ATI AIW 9600.
 
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Rui Maciel
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      01-02-2008, 12:49 AM
artix wrote:

> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
> Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
> The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
> supported CPU speed.


<snip />

I don't believe that is a problem, as nowadays hardware is dirt cheap,
specially used hardware. For example, a while back I assembled a new system
based on an AMD Athlon 64 X2 processor for less than 200 euros and more
recently I've bought an used hardware bundle (P3 1GHz, 256MB of RAM,
microATX motherboard) for less than 6 euros. So why bother with those
details if you wish to buy used gear to begin with?


Rui Maciel
 
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kony
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      01-02-2008, 02:24 AM
On Tue, 01 Jan 2008 15:23:50 -0500, (E-Mail Removed) wrote:

>On Tue, 1 Jan 2008 11:56:15 -0800, <(E-Mail Removed)>
>wrote:
>
>>> I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
>>> Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
>>> The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
>>> supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
>>> is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
>>> fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
>>> motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
>>> VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!

>>
>>Short answer is, don't throw good money after bad. Upgrading
>>to a 1.3 or 1.5GHz CPU isn't going to make that system suitable
>>for anything it can't already handle (web surfing, email, letter
>>writing etc).
>>
>>Save your money until you can make a substantial upgrade,
>>including a new motherboard, memory and CPU. Just my $02.
>>

>If you aren't into gaming or video editing I doubt you will really be
>using all that blazing speed. I went from a 660mz 120m RAM machine to
>a 3.5gz 1g RAM and I barely noticed. I save a whopping second or so
>when compressing MP3s, that is about all I have seen.



Seriously? I recall one upgrade of a Celeron 800 based
system w/256MB memory to Athlon XP1700 (o'c to run at
1.7GHz) w/512MB memory and it made quite a bit of
difference, though I suspect most of the difference in
everyday use was from doubling the memory so the Windows
filecache was hit far more often, less so the hard drive.

I wouldn't pay over about $20 for a processor upgrade for
the aforementioned system, and only then if the usage were
moderate to light.
 
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kony
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      01-02-2008, 02:40 AM
On Tue, 01 Jan 2008 20:01:44 +0100, artix
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>Hi All,
>
>I have a somewhat old computer which I use everyday. The CPU is an AMD
>Duron 800Mhz. I'd like to upgrade to a faster CPU, preferably an Athlon.
>The problem is that the motherboard manual does not state the maximum
>supported CPU speed. It only says up to ~1.2Ghz or faster. I think this
>is because when the motherboard was manufactured, 1.2Ghz was the
>fastest AMD CPU available. How can I find out the maximum CPU speed my
>motherboard can handle? The motherboard is a GA7ZM Micro ATX based on a
>VIA Apollo VT 8363 KT133 chipset. Thanks!



There are three main factors, some of which we can resolve
now and some will take a test and monitoring.

1) The KT133 chipset only supports 100MHz/DDR200 FSB. This
limits the stock speed processors to those having 200
"System Bus (MHz)" as Gigabyte put it, but they should have
stated 100MHz/DDR200 as that would be more technically
correct. However, there is a chance you could still run
some newer processor with a faster spec'd FSB than DDR200,
running it essentially underclocked to it's stock multiplier
times the DDR200. For example if the CPU multiplier were
14X, on 100MHz FSB, the result is a processor running at
1.4GHz. Of course you could instead look for an old 1.4Ghz
T-Bird Athlon but they may be rarer today, and use more
power. There might also be CPU multiplier support issues, I
don't really recall all the details anymore and they also
varied per board so even if I guessed it might not be
applicable.

2) Power is a factor. The board might (probably does)
support the lower CPU vcore voltage of newer processors, but
these newer faster processors at lower voltage consume a
significant amount more current... possibly a fair bit more
than the motherboard designers intended, more than the
board's VRM CPU supply subcircuit was engineered to handle.
It may make the mosfets and capacitors run hot and being
aged capacitors already, they might have an unacceptibly
short life running hotter. If the increased heat is only
moderate one solution might be to install a small fan
blowing upon that area, or if your heatsink has a high
volume fan and is oriented such that a large % of the
exhaust flows over that area it might be sufficient already
to cool the VRM subcircuit.

Correction - your board's VRM subcircuit, based on the
picture on the page for the CPU support, looks a bit
compromised and relocated probably due to being a mATX board
and old enough that processors didnt use much current yet.
Much of it is placed on the other side of the memory and it
may not be very well cooled, and it looks as though
Gigabyte left a few capacitors off the board where they
might've been installed since at the time processors didn't
use as much current. I would be cautious even more about
the resultant heat of upgrading to the fastest processor the
board "might" be able to run.

3) Past the first Palomino, perhaps even just before that,
there were some signaling changes in the board circuitry and
a bios update "might" be needed for some processors. If you
can find no further info about your specific board then the
best attempt would be flashing to the latest bios first then
trying any CPU you had. If this upgrade requires purchasing
new processor and it isnt' very cheap, as another poster
mentioned it might now be time to look at replacing the
whole processor, board, and memory combo. Unfortunately it
is also likely you'd need a new PSU at this point as your
system used mostly 5V current while a modern one uses mostly
12V current, causing a change in the 5V vs 12V rail output
bias that PSUs were later designed to accomodate.
 
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gfretwell@aol.com
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      01-02-2008, 05:13 AM
On Tue, 01 Jan 2008 21:24:43 -0500, kony <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>>If you aren't into gaming or video editing I doubt you will really be
>>using all that blazing speed. I went from a 660mz 120m RAM machine to
>>a 3.5gz 1g RAM and I barely noticed. I save a whopping second or so
>>when compressing MP3s, that is about all I have seen.

>
>
>Seriously? I recall one upgrade of a Celeron 800 based
>system w/256MB memory to Athlon XP1700 (o'c to run at
>1.7GHz) w/512MB memory and it made quite a bit of
>difference, though I suspect most of the difference in
>everyday use was from doubling the memory so the Windows
>filecache was hit far more often, less so the hard drive.


I suppose it depends on your OS. If you are running some bloatware
like XP or Vista you may be memory bound. The last Vista machine I
looked at was eating 400meg of RAM and burning a big chunk of a P4 CPU
just churning on the desktop. This was a fresh load on a new machine
right out of the box, not somethng with a few years of spyware.

 
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