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Trying to upgrade a prebuilt Dell.

I'm on a fairly limited budget and I want to up the performance of this PC that I barely use.

This is the PC here:

https://www.cnet.com/products/dell-inspiron-580-core-i3-550-3-2-ghz-monitor-none-series/specs/

I'm hoping that there is a cost effective way to get this thing running a few games. Skyrim, SFM, Counter Strike. That sorta stuff. I dont need max settings or anything like that. I just wanna be able to run things pretty smooth. Could I potentially increase Ram? Any suggestions?
Reply to GiggleSnarf
10 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about upgrade prebuilt dell
  1. Dell Inspiron 580 - Core i3 550 3.2 GHz - 4 GB DDR3 SDRAM - 1 TB, Hyperthreaded, integrated graphic.

    CPU is not terrible, its a dual core with hyperthreading so looks like a quad core. 4GB Memroy is adequate and if your windows is 32 bit then its all you can use.

    Best upgrade is adding a video card. Huge improvement over integrated video, low cost, works with your existing MB, CPU, Memory, Power supply. Easy to install.

    The looks like a mid tower (6.9 in x Depth 17.4 in x Height 14.8 in) that takes a full height (not low profile) video card.

    I can't figure out how much power you have. A GT 740 is apt to work, at 64W TDP (you have a x16 pcie slot, that should reserve 75W from your PSU). A GT 730 $60US is a good bit slower, but uses only 38W. Both will absolutely kill your current video for gaming.

    If you can open case and tell us the wattage of power supply that would help. It's usually on a yellow sticker you can read with the case open. Or mabe you can find the PSU output by googling. I think either video card is low enough power to work with your current power supply, but would like to know the PSU output to be sure.

    Here is a compare of GT 730 vs GT740
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GeForce-GT-730-vs-Nvidia-GeForce-GT-740/m12582vsm13294

    Here is a compare of your current integrated graphics to the GT 730. 730 will be 4X faster.
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GeForce-GT-730-vs-Intel-HD-Graphics-Clarkdale-073309-GHz/m12582vsm7702

    If you go to youtube you can find videos of people playing Skyrim, SFM, Counter Strike etc with GT740 so you can see framerates and video quality settings.

    (The only other upgrade is to replace CPU/MB/Memory which will be a couple hundred and not worth it vs. building a new PC from scratch or buying a later refurb and updating it, or even getting a $350 AMD A8 based laptop).
    Reply to tsnor
  2. From what I can tell from Googling around, the Dell Inspiron 580s with a i3 or i5 came with a 300W power supply.
    Reply to mjslakeridge
  3. tsnor said:
    Dell Inspiron 580 - Core i3 550 3.2 GHz - 4 GB DDR3 SDRAM - 1 TB, Hyperthreaded, integrated graphic.

    CPU is not terrible, its a dual core with hyperthreading so looks like a quad core. 4GB Memroy is adequate and if your windows is 32 bit then its all you can use.

    Best upgrade is adding a video card. Huge improvement over integrated video, low cost, works with your existing MB, CPU, Memory, Power supply. Easy to install.

    The looks like a mid tower (6.9 in x Depth 17.4 in x Height 14.8 in) that takes a full height (not low profile) video card.

    I can't figure out how much power you have. A GT 740 is apt to work, at 64W TDP (you have a x16 pcie slot, that should reserve 75W from your PSU). A GT 730 $60US is a good bit slower, but uses only 38W. Both will absolutely kill your current video for gaming.

    If you can open case and tell us the wattage of power supply that would help. It's usually on a yellow sticker you can read with the case open. Or mabe you can find the PSU output by googling. I think either video card is low enough power to work with your current power supply, but would like to know the PSU output to be sure.

    Here is a compare of GT 730 vs GT740
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GeForce-GT-730-vs-Nvidia-GeForce-GT-740/m12582vsm13294

    Here is a compare of your current integrated graphics to the GT 730. 730 will be 4X faster.
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GeForce-GT-730-vs-Intel-HD-Graphics-Clarkdale-073309-GHz/m12582vsm7702

    If you go to youtube you can find videos of people playing Skyrim, SFM, Counter Strike etc with GT740 so you can see framerates and video quality settings.

    (The only other upgrade is to replace CPU/MB/Memory which will be a couple hundred and not worth it vs. building a new PC from scratch or buying a later refurb and updating it, or even getting a $350 AMD A8 based laptop).


    The power supply is 300w
    Reply to GiggleSnarf
  4. Scroll down to the 8th post in this thread (by Dell - Chris M.). There he lists the GPUs that were approved for the computer at the time. If you can find out how many Watts any of them consumed, then perhaps you could find out if the G 730 or 740 would consume equal to or less power. Modern GPUs are more efficient than the older ones, so there is a good chance your 300W psu would be OK.

    http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/desktop/f/3514/t/19347427
    Reply to mjslakeridge
  5. mjslakeridge said:
    Scroll down to the 8th post in this thread (by Dell - Chris M.). There he lists the GPUs that were approved for the computer at the time. If you can find out how many Watts any of them consumed, then perhaps you could find out if the G 730 or 740 would consume equal to or less power. Modern GPUs are more efficient than the older ones, so there is a good chance your 300W psu would be OK.

    http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/desktop/f/3514/t/19347427

    Would there be any downsides to upgrading my PSU?
    Reply to GiggleSnarf
  6. Some Dells from that era used a non-standard sized PSU. You would have to carefully measure your current PSU and compare it to the ATX psus available today. I don't know if the screw holes on the case would line up with current psus. Try Googling "replacement PSUs for Dell Inspiron 580" to see what the various forums have to say. You may not need to replace the PSU if the wattage of the GPU you are looking at is low enough.
    Reply to mjslakeridge
  7. Dell towers use a standard PSU. The others don't.Be sure it has enough power on the 5V. rail Dell can use more there. If you buy a PSU you can run whatever you want. this Dell doesn't have the AMD GPU issue that many older Dells had. I see newer AMD GPUs running at userbenchmark.com
    Look here for ideas.
    http://www.userbenchmark.com/System/Dell-Inspiron-580/1678
    Reply to william p
  8. Best answer
    GiggleSnarf said:
    tsnor said:
    Dell Inspiron 580 - Core i3 550 3.2 GHz - 4 GB DDR3 SDRAM - 1 TB, Hyperthreaded, integrated graphic.

    CPU is not terrible, its a dual core with hyperthreading so looks like a quad core. 4GB Memroy is adequate and if your windows is 32 bit then its all you can use.

    Best upgrade is adding a video card. Huge improvement over integrated video, low cost, works with your existing MB, CPU, Memory, Power supply. Easy to install.

    The looks like a mid tower (6.9 in x Depth 17.4 in x Height 14.8 in) that takes a full height (not low profile) video card.

    I can't figure out how much power you have. A GT 740 is apt to work, at 64W TDP (you have a x16 pcie slot, that should reserve 75W from your PSU). A GT 730 $60US is a good bit slower, but uses only 38W. Both will absolutely kill your current video for gaming.

    If you can open case and tell us the wattage of power supply that would help. It's usually on a yellow sticker you can read with the case open. Or mabe you can find the PSU output by googling. I think either video card is low enough power to work with your current power supply, but would like to know the PSU output to be sure.

    Here is a compare of GT 730 vs GT740
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GeForce-GT-730-vs-Nvidia-GeForce-GT-740/m12582vsm13294

    Here is a compare of your current integrated graphics to the GT 730. 730 will be 4X faster.
    http://gpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Nvidia-GeForce-GT-730-vs-Intel-HD-Graphics-Clarkdale-073309-GHz/m12582vsm7702

    If you go to youtube you can find videos of people playing Skyrim, SFM, Counter Strike etc with GT740 so you can see framerates and video quality settings.

    (The only other upgrade is to replace CPU/MB/Memory which will be a couple hundred and not worth it vs. building a new PC from scratch or buying a later refurb and updating it, or even getting a $350 AMD A8 based laptop).


    The power supply is 300w


    Perfect. You can buy and install a GT740 ($80 US) or GT 730 ($60 US) without any other changes. 300 W is plenty, even with an older power supply that reserves a chunk of that 300W for 3.3 and 5v, when everything you have needs 12V.

    If me, and budget is less than $200, I'd get an $80 GT840 and put the rest of the money in the bank for you next PC. The GT740 is much stronger than the 730 for not much more money.

    Good luck whatever you end up doing.
    Reply to tsnor
  9. GiggleSnarf said:
    mjslakeridge said:
    Scroll down to the 8th post in this thread (by Dell - Chris M.). There he lists the GPUs that were approved for the computer at the time. If you can find out how many Watts any of them consumed, then perhaps you could find out if the G 730 or 740 would consume equal to or less power. Modern GPUs are more efficient than the older ones, so there is a good chance your 300W psu would be OK.

    http://en.community.dell.com/support-forums/desktop/f/3514/t/19347427

    Would there be any downsides to upgrading my PSU?



    Downside is cost. You'd spend $50 for any decent PSU and there is no need if your current PSU is 300W.
    Reply to tsnor
  10. GTX750Ti is popular with the Dell PSU. Some GTX1050 come w/o the 6 pin PCIe cable also.
    Reply to william p
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