I own a dell dimension 2350, bought new in 2003.
Celeron 2.2Ghz(Willamette, 128kb cache)
Integrated graphics(Intel Extreme Graphics, powered by the CPU, uses 64mb of system RAM)
786 Mb RAM(originally 256Mb)
Intel 845GL motherboard
17" CRT monitor
The system runs fine for the large part, but it sometimes takes up to 5 seconds for the screen to redraw when switching between applications. I am not much of a gamer. Also, if I am playing a video file(or DVD) in the background, there is sometimes skipping/jerkiness, but I don't do this often.
I found some parts on eBay that I couldn't resist:
P4 2.6Ghz(Northwood, 512kb cache, non hyper-threading(system can't support HT)): $50 shipped from USA
ATI Radeon 7500 128 MB DDR PCI(I don't have an AGP or PCI-Express port): $28 shipped from Hong Kong
The prices are "high"(compared to modern CPUs and AGP/PCI-E cards) because they are old and in demand.
So what type of improvement can I expect? I hope by increasing the CPU speed and cache, moving the video off the CPU and onto the GPU, and having larger, dedicated video RAM, I can expect a 20% boost. Hopefully this would make my machine Win 7 ready and beyond.
Only thing that bothers me slighly is the switch from a Willamette CPU(0.18 micron) to a Northwood(0.13), due to the differences in voltage etc. But from my research, the latest bios update should have enough info for the system to correctly detect and accomodate the changes, and I've already installed the latest bios. I'll still hold my breath though, and for the small prices involved, I don't mind if the new CPU won't run properly.
The new parts should arrive within 2 weeks.
For for sentimental reasons, I will probably be using this machine until it dies. I'll probably upgrade to an LCD monitor later down the track.
Anyone still using old hardware?