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Subject:  Hardware upgrade Date:  10/6/2012  12:14 AM
Author:  maracle Number:  34903 of 37101

I was thinking back today to my teens and early 20s, when I was always tinkering and knew this stuff cold. Now I'm in my early 30s, and despite being a firmware and software developer time has passed me by and I'm not up to speed on the way the latest and greatest tech works. Kind of sad really...

Anyway, a few weeks ago I asked about upgrading my RAM and got some good advice. Since then I've been thinking that instead of getting 16GB, I might save some cash and get 8GB and combine it with my existing 4GB.

My motherboard's specs say that I have 4 DDR3 slots, dual channel. So if I pay attention to which slot is which, it should be no problem to put in a pair of identical 4GB sticka and a pair of identical 2GB sticks, right?

Second, I'm considering a graphics card upgrade as well. My motherboard has 2 PCI Express 2.0 slots, and it says with one card it's 16x and with 2 cards 8x. I'm not if that's always the case or if it could be considered a limitation. Do good quality mobos have multiple PCI Express busses so you can have multiple cards at full speed?

I have never tried an SLI setup, but I was thinking that instead of buying a new video card (currently I have a GTX 460 768MB card), maybe I should get another card on the cheap end and SLI them. But I have no idea whether this is a good idea, or what limitation or requirements there are. It seems the GPU needs to be the same (another GTX460, if I can find one) but not the manufacturer? Is the fact that my PCI Express bus would be split between the cards a problem? Anyone have advice on this front? I realize I'll need to check to make sure my power supply can handle another card as well...

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