11 years on, time for an upgrade. Please help.

  square eyes 1 21:01 09 Dec 2013


I have been suffering with a very old computer, but with such old hardware, and XP coming to an end soon, it's time for an upgrade. However, I am trying to do it on the cheap. What I really want is to be able to play HD video, especially as I have an HD camcorder. I really struggle to play and edit the MTS files on this system, and seeing as I want to do a lot more video editing, life is too short to keep waiting many seconds for my Asus A7v333 Athlon 2100xp 1.79ghz processor to catch up with itself after every instruction. I am not looking to buy a new PC, but would be happy to settle for a pc half the age of this one. I assume anything less than 5 years old should be able to play raw 1080p MTS files smoothly, so I was wondering if anyone has advice as to what minimum spec I would need? I have a Mesh ATX case, so I think I would have to ditch it, as trying to find second hand ATX mobos and CPUs would be quite hard I think, and the cases seem to have got smaller in recent years. It would also be nice to re-use the dvd writer and HDD, although I don't think that will be possible either as they are IDE connections. With a hopeful budget of around £100, what are my chances of vastly improving performance as to play HD smoothly, and satisfactorily during editing? What would you do?

Any feedback would be very appreciated.

  Woolwell 11:18 10 Dec 2013

"With a hopeful budget of around £100, what are my chances of vastly improving performance as to play HD smoothly, and satisfactorily during editing?" IMO your budget is way too small as HD video editing requires quite a lot of grunt and HD space.

  Bris 16:50 10 Dec 2013

Realistically there is nothing you can do to upgrade your PC as its far too old.

About the only thing you could keep would be the case as its of ATX form and therefore should take all current ATX and micro ATX motherboards but really I would go for a new PC and you need to consider spending at least £600 to get the performance required to edit video.

  Forum Editor 15:41 11 Dec 2013

I agree with the others. Your computer is too old to be upgraded to the extent that it would be able to cope with your requirements. Anything you spend on it towards that end would be money wasted.

  square eyes 1 17:25 12 Dec 2013

Thanks for the feedback guys. I have decide to wait a while, but it was sad to hear I would need £600 to play and edit HD video. I have read that people with dual cores and an HD card have managed to play HD whether raw or compressed. I expect lag when I edit, but on this it just takes too much time, but I can still do it though! I remember being surprised I could when I first tried, so decided to hang onto it for a while. But Im getting crashing problems now and also not being able to boot until warm (capacitors I think), so I just need to throw it out now. There are systems on Amazon for £200 that claim to play 1080p video but without HDD and OS, but they are usually Dells, and for some reason, I've always thought Dell wasn't a good idea.

Anyway, cheers for the feedback.

  Bris 17:59 12 Dec 2013

Playing HD video is not a problem with most PCs but video editing is about the most CPU intensive task that a PC can be asked to perform along with 3D games playing and requires a lot of processing power as well as enough memory to support it. For a top spec games machine that will run 3D games at the highest resolution you can expect to pay around £1,200

I remember trying to edit video using a pentium 4 processor and Pinnacle Studio 7 many years ago and I had the same problem as you with constant crashes and it was so slow as to be virtually unusable.

My current PC has an i5 3570k processor with 64 bit W8.1 and 16Gb of memory and I use Sonys Vegas software which copes well with HD video editing. If you go for a lesser spec machine then it will work ok but the lower the spec the slower it will run when editing and rendering. A higher spec machine will run faster but of course the higher the spec the more it will cost..

Mine cost around £800 and is a self build but I did spend £150 on the case.

  Woolwell 21:25 12 Dec 2013

My system has an i7 processor and 16Gb of RAM plus Blu-ray writer. To echo Bris HD video editing requires power. I wouldn't contemplate spending under £600 for such a system and more like £1000.

  HondaMan 11:58 13 Dec 2013

Regrettably, I have to agree with those who say "NONE"

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