Question HP XW8600 Upgrade ideas

Apr 18, 2019
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Hi everyone
I have a xw8600 that I would like to upgrade to a gaming and engineering analysis machine. I am newbie at this, so I would appreciate any advice. Budget ~ €200
It currently has
Operating System
Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU
Intel Xeon X5460 @ 3.16GHz
Intel Xeon X5460 @ 3.16GHz
RAM
12.0GB FB-DDR2 @ 333MHz (2x6)
Motherboard
Hewlett-Packard 0A98h (XU1 PROCESSOR)
Graphics
1023MB NVIDIA Quadro 2000 (HP)
Storage
119GB ATA M4-CT128M4SSD1 SCSI Disk Device (SATA (SSD)) OS DRIVE
232GB ATA WDC WD2500JD-00H SCSI Disk Device (SATA )
279GB SEAGATE ST3300657SS SCSI Disk Device (SAS(Serial Attached SCSI) )
136GB FUJITSU MBA3147RC SCSI Disk Device (SAS(Serial Attached SCSI) )
1397GB ATA SAMSUNG HD154UI SCSI Disk Device (SATA )
 

cdrkf

Honorable
Hi everyone
I have a xw8600 that I would like to upgrade to a gaming and engineering analysis machine. I am newbie at this, so I would appreciate any advice. Budget ~ €200
It currently has
Operating System
Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
CPU
Intel Xeon X5460 @ 3.16GHz
Intel Xeon X5460 @ 3.16GHz
RAM
12.0GB FB-DDR2 @ 333MHz (2x6)
Motherboard
Hewlett-Packard 0A98h (XU1 PROCESSOR)
Graphics
1023MB NVIDIA Quadro 2000 (HP)
Storage
119GB ATA M4-CT128M4SSD1 SCSI Disk Device (SATA (SSD)) OS DRIVE
232GB ATA WDC WD2500JD-00H SCSI Disk Device (SATA )
279GB SEAGATE ST3300657SS SCSI Disk Device (SAS(Serial Attached SCSI) )
136GB FUJITSU MBA3147RC SCSI Disk Device (SAS(Serial Attached SCSI) )
1397GB ATA SAMSUNG HD154UI SCSI Disk Device (SATA )
Interesting machine!

So the best upgrade you are going to get gaming wise is to put a faster gpu into the machine- although be aware those Xeon chips are pretty old now so will likely hold modern graphics boards back a bit due to low single thread performance (the fact you have 8 cores total though is good).

I'd suggest something like an AMD RX 570 would be a nice fit, and would come in under budget.

The other worthwhile upgrade would be to simplify that hard disk arrangement and get a single 500gb or 1tb SSD for the main OS drive (also large enough to put some games on), as that 120gb drive is going to get full pretty quickly with W10 pro on it.
 
Apr 18, 2019
4
0
10
0
Interesting machine!

So the best upgrade you are going to get gaming wise is to put a faster gpu into the machine- although be aware those Xeon chips are pretty old now so will likely hold modern graphics boards back a bit due to low single thread performance (the fact you have 8 cores total though is good).

I'd suggest something like an AMD RX 570 would be a nice fit, and would come in under budget.

The other worthwhile upgrade would be to simplify that hard disk arrangement and get a single 500gb or 1tb SSD for the main OS drive (also large enough to put some games on), as that 120gb drive is going to get full pretty quickly with W10 pro on it.
Thanks. I looked up the AMD RX570 and it does have some good specs, the XFX version sits in at €150. Do i need to check compatibility with the motherboard?
Check on the SSD. Just looked up a €60 Crucial MX500.
Also, any advice on the RAM? I would like to increase some to have more capability to run engineering analysis software like ANSYS or even Maya.
I realise my budget will go up but if its within reason I am OK to look.
 

cdrkf

Honorable
Thanks. I looked up the AMD RX570 and it does have some good specs, the XFX version sits in at €150. Do i need to check compatibility with the motherboard?
Check on the SSD. Just looked up a €60 Crucial MX500.
Also, any advice on the RAM? I would like to increase some to have more capability to run engineering analysis software like ANSYS or even Maya.
I realise my budget will go up but if its within reason I am OK to look.
Ram wise, are there free ram slots? The issue you are going to have is you have two cpus with triple channel memory controllers. That means to ensure even ram pools and bandwidth to all cores, you'll need to get 6 matching modules (e.g. Another 6 x 2gb modules). I'm guessing the mobo has two banks of memory (one for each cpu), of you area lucky each bank will only have half the ram slots currently in use?
 
Apr 18, 2019
4
0
10
0
Ram wise, are there free ram slots? The issue you are going to have is you have two cpus with triple channel memory controllers. That means to ensure even ram pools and bandwidth to all cores, you'll need to get 6 matching modules (e.g. Another 6 x 2gb modules). I'm guessing the mobo has two banks of memory (one for each cpu), of you area lucky each bank will only have half the ram slots currently in use?
Yes there are free RAM slots (16 total, so 4 free). But I am happy to buy a new set all together. Ebay has a 32GB (4x8) for €70. Also it looks like XW8600 only supports DDR2-667 so will my gaming be limited by this?
 

cdrkf

Honorable
Yes there are free RAM slots (16 total, so 4 free). But I am happy to buy a new set all together. Ebay has a 32GB (4x8) for €70. Also it looks like XW8600 only supports DDR2-667 so will my gaming be limited by this?
Ok so I did a little more digging on your cpu's.... so they are Core 2 Quads- a generation older than I thought. On that basis you have a dual channel memory controller for each socket, so any memory upgrades needs to be done in 4 modules rather than 6, which helps.

Also, my Motherboard is legacy BIOS. So I guess I cant use any of the newer cards?
I've had a look at the legacy bios issue, I must admit I hadn't ever come across that one. Typically you should be able to put any graphics board into any motherboard with a PCIe slot.

Apparently the issue appears to be with some budget graphics cards (threads I've seen have specifically mentions AMD cards such as the RX460 (Saphire has been called out for this as apparently it is only an issue with certain models).

On that basis, it might be easier to stick with an Nvidia card, as I'm unsure of how you can tell which AMD cards would be a problem. Given the spec of your cpu's there not much point going for something faster than say a GTX 1050 imo, although given the performance advantage you get with the RX570 for similar money I might be tempted to risk it and try one anyway on the basis if it won't boot up you can always RMA it and swap it out for a 1050 or similar...
 
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