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Frankenstein 2.0 - Upgrade of an old PC

by Divdor



CPU Clock Rate


CPU Temperature While Idle

28.0° C

CPU Temperature Under Load

52.0° C

GPU Core Clock Rate


GPU Effective Memory Clock Rate


GPU Temperature While Idle

40.0° C

GPU Temperature Under Load

63.0° C


Updated 10/9/2016

Well I started not to post my build, but pcpartpicker was such a big part of helping me choose the final parts. I hope I have helped a few people and I appreciate all the advice given to me.

I call my build Frankenstein because it has never had up to date parts. Even now I am using an old PSU bought 5 years ago as part of a Tigerdirect barebones kit. Update 5/2013. Bought a Seasonic X-850.

I have included a picture of my old un-upgraded PC and here is link to the old one if anyone is curious. http://pcpartpicker.com/user/Divdor/saved/17yB

When I first decided to upgrade my build, I was on a very tight budget. I was set on doing a FX-6300 with a Gigabyte 990FX. Things changed and the budget got a little better. Things got a lot better and I was able to upgrade Video as well.

As you can see I have a Eyefinity 3x1 plus one setup and I love it. The Acer 20" monitors are a lower resolution so I am running a 5040x900 array. A lot easier on the video card and all the games I have played have run flawlessly with very high to maximum settings. Update 6/2013, I couldn't stand it and bought 3 Asus VS 247H-P monitors and now run 6048X1080p resolution. These are the same height as the old HP monitor and look good.

I know the PSU is bad, but it has served me well for 5 years and I ran out of money. It will be replaced eventually with a modular. Seasonic X-850 bought 5/2013

Future upgrades:

  • PSU to full modular - DONE 5/2013
  • Monitors to 24" 1920 x 1080p - DONE 6/2013
  • Mouse to Logitech M570 - DONE 9/2013
  • Second Video Card to Run Crossfire - DONE 8/2013
  • SSD - Samsung 850 Evo 10/2016
  • Video card upgrade Gigabyte Geforce GTX 1080.

Oh and the CPU and Mobo were $70 off the price. I would/will update the prices if I can.

Final note about the upgrades that have finished. I really love my PC as it currently is. The crossfire setup is running well now under the Catalyst Driver 13.8b Beta. While I would love to have the best of everything, I had to balance my PC designs with life and budgets. After the SSD, I will be done upgrading for a long while. Next time, I think it is time to try a water cooled system. Will update more when new Video Card and SSD arrive.

Thanks to Philip for putting together a great site and I hope you enjoy my latest time killer.

Comments Sorted by:

Spirafall 1 Build 2 points 53 months ago

I've found your posts helpful, and I'm glad to see you finally have a build up. :)

Things look a little dusty, but well cared for. May this build last you many more years to come.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

Thank you Spirafall. Means a lot.

EightTheGreat 1 point 53 months ago

Didn't some dude make a Beastly Computer called FrankNstein on youtube? That thing had 3 SLI GTX 580's with an i7 990x @ 4.7GHz. I like this build though.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

It actually was just a mis-mash of parts I threw together for the longest time. This is the most up to date PC I have had since 2008. The name just kinda stuck with me. Thanks for the comment.

Jimmy 1 point 53 months ago

How the hell did he cool a first gen i7 extreme at 4.7 Ghz? Single Stage Phase Change? Also how the hell did he power that rig? Multi PSU? There are many problems associated with that particular type of build, with power and cooling being the most dominant.

EightTheGreat 2 points 53 months ago
Jimmy 1 point 53 months ago

Oh, external rads. I can see that working, but he can't go a whole lot higher.

Jimmy 1 point 53 months ago

Great build Divdor! I was wondering when you were going to do a build.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

Had a better tax season than normal, so I watched for sales and bought a little over my budget, but it was worth it. Thanks for the comment!

Bgwood91 1 point 53 months ago

I love your setup! I feel your routing would look a hair better if you moved the GPU power cable to the side of the GPU, opposed to underneath it. Just an idea.

How do you like the 500r? I was thinking about that case in my upcoming build.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

My favorite case to date. The temps are way better than the cheap case I used to have and the cable management options are superb. I highly recommend it.

Thanks for the suggestion on the cable route.

IamApropos 3 Builds 1 point 53 months ago

Great upgrades. Quality Parts and well done!! Thank you for sharing this, I really enjoyed browsing the build photos ;)

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

Thanks IamApropos. Means a lot.

Bones 6 Builds 1 point 53 months ago

This is a very nice build and will be even better after you finish it. Also great job on cable management, but what does the back side look like? Altogether nice upgrade. I'm going to upgrade my Dell XPS soon too.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

I forgot to take pictures of the backside. Since the PSU is not modular, I had to tuck and tie up where I could. It was still a pain to get all the unused cables and connectors out of the way. Will try to get a pic or two next time I work on the PC. Thanks for the comment.

Stingingnettle 2 Builds 1 point 53 months ago

I wouldn't mind having your old build... It would still be a huge step up from a crappy 2004 laptop...

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 53 months ago

I think I am going to rebuild it in its old case. It may be my new office PC when I have to move from my current building. Hang in there, the right opportunities will come along. PC happiness is when budget and dreams meet. Also knowing when something is cool to have versus necessary.

I have learned a heck of a lot reading forums and learning to weed out the fanboys from the people that actually know what they are talking about. I also am a budget guy. My previous way of looking at PC components was to buy the stuff that was already out of date. Mainly because it was cheaper but still ran everything well.

Unfortunately, that strategy doesn't work that well anymore. The price of the last CPUs are equivalent to the new stuff. Compare a Core I5-2500k to a core I5-3570k and you will see what I mean. At least mobos and other peripherals do drop in price. A z68 is cheaper than a z77.

Truth, I got lucky. I bought the CPU as part of a barebones kit and it was the best thing I bought. I did not realize that the L2 cache on the CPU would keep it relevant until 2013. Try to buy the right stuff is a crap shoot. Just buy the best you can and use the heck out of it.

Oh and don't watch prices. It will tick you off if they go on sale a month later. Good Luck.

skemble 24 Builds 1 point 48 months ago

Hey! I'm curious about Firestrike scores on your 7950s. I'm running the same cards and am looking for something to compare to. For some reason I am unable to run the test at anything over 1031/1575 core/memory. I'm using MSI Afterburner.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 1 point 48 months ago

Hey Skemble I got the following:

CCC Driver /Core / Memory / Firestrike

  • 13.8B 1100 / 1475 / 9583
  • 13.8B 1100 / 1575 / 10194
  • 13.9 1100 / 1475 / 10252
  • 13.9 1100 / 1575 / 10364

I had been running the memory clock lower to improve stability, but I an going to try it a while at 1575 to see if the new driver helped any. I had to adjust the power limit up +10 and voltage to 1250 using Sapphire TriXX. I use MSI Afterburner to check the Crossfire settings. Hope the data above helps. I do not know if it affects the score or not but I am running Eyefinity at 5760x1080p.

skemble 24 Builds 1 point 48 months ago

Thanks for all the data! For some reason when running Afterburner I am only able to get 1032 core and 1575 memory with voltage at 1200 and power limit at 20. I've tried increasing the voltage, but anything higher than that will crash. However when I use Trixx I can get higher core up to 1150.

I hadn't noticed that 13.9 was out. I'm going to install the new drivers and run the tests again and check for stability. We are using different, but similar performing CPUs, but this is what I got on my latest run: http://www.3dmark.com/fs/904652

tumey23 1 Build 1 point 43 months ago

Sweet build looks really clean. How does it perform?

kirbyloveszoe -1 points 53 months ago

My goal in life is to have a battlestation just like that. Thanks for the inspiration.

Divdor submitter 1 Build 2 points 53 months ago

Thanks Kirby.

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