[SOLVED] Need Expert help with upgrading my Computer.

Apr 25, 2021
Current Specs:
-i3 9100f as a processor
-Asus TUF gaming B365M-Plus motherboard Micro ATX form factor LGA 1151 B365 Chipset (Coffee Lake, not Kabylake or Skylake, those are also LGA 1151, but use different Chipsets.) with 4 Ram Slots.
-12gb 2400mhz RAM (1x8gb 2666mhz + 1x4gb 2400mhz RAM sticks)
-Asus STRIX NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 TI, that is so old, I am concerned that it might die soon.
-Micro ATX case that fits 350mm Long and .5 Inch tall (From the top of the GPU IO Shield, not the total height of the GPU) GPU's. Name: Fractal Design Core 1000 mATX mini tower.
-600 Watt Thermaltake TR-2 with no 80+ and no metal rating (Like Bronze or Gold)
-Enough Storage for me
-Acer Monitor with a few dead pixels that are really annoying.

-My main use is gaming, but, I am also into a few workstation tasks, like Photoshop and Illustrator. The only new games I plan on playing are Assassin's Creed Valhalla, and the New Call of Duty game (Vanguard). I am fine with playing those on medium graphics at 60FPS. I refuse to run below 50FPS, for it doesn't work well on my monitor. Other than that, I am going to play The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim with a hefty amount of modifications, which requires a hefty CPU and GPU for a steady 60FPS. It requires around a GTX 1080 with at least a Core i5 for a smooth experience. And Minecraft with a Shader's pack, which I am currently using the lightest available shader's pack, and am getting around 30-50FPS. I would like to improve that to 60+ FPS.

-I am on a budget of $1,100 USD. I will not have the money until Christmas of this year, (December 25th) which is just over 2 months from now.

-I would like to upgrade my computer, even through this terrible market and climate. It does not look like it is going to change, so I am looking for the best parts as of now and the near future.

-I just upgraded my case, so that is out of the picture, and so is storage and motherboard. I am just looking for sensible upgrades for my GPU, Processor, Ram, Monitor, and potentially Power supply, all while staying in budget.

-When I try to calculate prices, I use the average prices for each component to find out how much I will probably be able to get it for.

-For GPU, I prefer Reference cards or small form factor GPU's, for they aren't very tall. My case can support taller GPU's, I just can't use the fan on the door, which I found out the hard way when I installed my tall GTX 980 TI in it. And I would like to use it, to help cool down the GPU and CPU. I also can't get a super power hungry GPU. I can maybe upgrade to a 650 Watt 80+ Bronze PSU, but, that might fry my outlet, for my wall sockets aren't capable of super powerful wattage outputs.

-For Processor, I want either an Intel 8th or 9th gen, so that I do not have to replace my current motherboard. Maybe a Core i5 or Core i7.

-I can potentially upgrade Power supplies as mentioned above, I just can't go much higher in my current situation.

-I need a new monitor. Just 1080p. 60-75HZ is enough. Preferably one with AMD Freesync. And around 24-27 Inches.

-For GPU, I don't really care about Ray Tracing, I just want a newer GPU, that is a sensible upgrade from a 980 TI.

-Lastly, I currently have Windows 11 Pro, which is tied into my Windows key, and I don't want to have to purchase a new key just to Downgrade.

With everything taken into account, what are some ideas of things I could get? I am open to not upgrading certain parts if need be.


The problem is that if you want a significant upgrade on a 980 Ti, it's going to use a huge chunk of your budget. Because of the GPU mess, used 980 Tis are going for $250-$350 and new GPUs are hard to come by at reasonable prices.

There are some serious problems with your PSU plan. First off, if you're worried about your 980 Ti dying soon, you should be replacing that PSU as soon as possible; it's well into the Do Not Buy tier and should never have been paired with this GPU in the first place. The other problem is if you want a significant upgrade on your current GPU, you don't want to cheap out on the PSU and buying based on 80 Plus rating isn't how any of this works; it's an efficiency rating, not a measure of the quality of the unit (though there's a correlation, there are huge exceptions all over the place). There's a curated PSU tier list in the Power Supplies forum. For a 980 Ti level card and certainly anything more powerful, Tier B is as low as you should ever consider going to ensure the maximum lifespan of your components.

Also, a higher output unit has nothing to do with your electricity in this way. A 1000W PSU of the same efficiency as a 500W PSU draws no more power with identical equipment. A 650W PSU isn't drawing 650W from the wall at all times, it just means that's the maximum it can supply the components. If 650W PSU was drawing 650W at all times, a PC with a 650W PSU, at rather inexpensive US electric prices, would cost about $650 a year (it doesn't).
Reactions: RoryHankel
Apr 25, 2021
Wow, I had no idea. Thank you for your advice. I already knew 80+ is the efficiency rating, I just thought it correlated with the PSU rank.