Hey guys and gals,
Last year, I attempted to upgrade my PC by treating myself to a new GFX card - the nVidia GTX 850, and was horrified to realise that I couldn't fit it because it was too bloody big. The combination of the hardware that was already packed onto the motherboard meant that there was no hope of ever getting it in there - it would have literally crushed or irreversibly bent some of the circuit components out of the board.
However, before I discovered this rather annoying problem, I didn't realise (likely as a result of my sloppy / ignorant research) that the card required two 8-pin power connectors, only one of which my PSU was actually capable of supplying. The card did come with a converter that transformer two 4-pin connectors into a single 8-pin one, but my PSU didn't even have any spare rear-panel slots for these aforementioned 4-pin plugs.
Honestly, upgrading is a bloody nightmare. Back in the late 90's and the first few years of the 00's, I was quite content building machines up from scratch and cherrypicking my favoured components. Now, however, it seems that buying a modern graphics card requires you to reserve a small auditorium within which to acommodate it.
I have a watercooled i5 750, nVidia GTX 285, so it's not a pants machine by any standard. But the watercooler is starting to beep regularly as the pump fails, and the graphics card seems to be running hot regularly now, as I think the fans are stuttering, and in some cases failing completely.
I'd like to purchase a new gaming machine, but I'm not one of these people to want the latest and greatest 'must have' gaming rigs - I just want something capable that will be able to run moderns games on their 'good' graphic settings at a decent framerate.
I'm totally out of the loop now with hardware, to be honest. Back when I built PCs, it was all about 'Socket 7' or 'Slot A' motherboards and DIMM chips, with their fancy new 'AGP' graphics busses. Now, I couldn't even tell you what the standards are, or even what format of memory is the most 'current'.
What sort of budget should I be looking at? And more to the point, is there a decent UK supplier that doesn't ponce you off in the manner you might get if you walk into PC World and have one of their salespeople try and dumb down to you why having 'tech guy' aftersales support and warranties is a must have. Please, that's why I have home insurance!
Thanks to anyone who can offer an olive-branch on this :)
EDIT: As wisely pointed out, I should've probably mentioned that my budget is around the £1,300 mark - no need for a display, keyboard or mouse!