Motherboard question



Hi , would it be possible to replace my dell 4600 motherboard for athlon ,


It’s certainly possible.

Would I recommend it? No.

Your Dell system doesn’t use standard components. Sure the form factor maybe ATX, but the connection cables for drive lights, power switch and fans won’t work with an off the shelf motherboard. No guarantees the standoffs will work either.

Why would you want to do that in the first place?


I thought it would be easier, i want to get another computer but not buy a dell or gateway… i like to build my own , or upgrade existing with a new motherboard i guess it is a stupid idea. im just shaky on buying parts and making everything work and what parts to buy , i would like a better machine for gaming but dont want to spend the big bucks.


It’s not a stupid idea, and you could have a lot of fun building your own machine. Many here would recommend it. Unfortunately you won’t have much luck upgrading your Dell system. Computer makers design their systems to not be upgradable, which is the main reason many decide to build their own.

I would suggest you visit any of the many hardware enthusiast sites. You will be able to find a lot of information and you can do your research to build your own machine. Do take your time with this, as it’s very important that you understand what you are doing. Building your own computer is a very enjoyable experience, and one that will give you much satisfaction.


Exactly and cases aren’t at all expensive especially if you are not going to be weighing your system down with multiple drves as the PSU that comes with the cheaper cases is fine for basic computing and you can always get a better one when the time arises. It is always best to start from scratch when building, if getting rid of the old Dell just salvage what you can, drives, memory if it is not too old.

If you want a good gaming system big bucks comes in at one major area the graphics card. I know some people whoes graphics cards actaully cost a lot more than the rest of the componants in the system.

Also if I remember correctly there wouldn’t be a power connector compatable with an athlon based board any way. Therefore even if it would fit it would fit it would be useless.


thanks for all the replies.


If there is anything in your old system you can salvage there is an advantage to that. Its less you have to buy now so you can get a little beter with the new stuff (if you are on a budget), plus you can replace anything less than desirable over time, piece by piece, and can get stuff at beter prices when it goes on sale.
I would defanatlly start with a new motherboard and case as others have recomended though personally I would get a beter power supply unless it is one of the few rare cases that come with decent power supplies.


I had done so many upgrades at one point that the spares box in the loft was so full ,I decided to make up a machine from it all.
The parts together amounted to the machine I had originally bought!
The follow on from that would be to always build your own from scratch,relegating the old one to lesser tasks when the new one is ready.
However its cheaper to buy a new machine than to build one.
Not half as much fun though…


I had 3 systems running at one time due to that but now run 2. I might have a third running again soon though for a multimedia pc on the tv. It can be really nice to have two computers at your desktop with a kvm switch (kvm switch allows you to change between two computers with a few key strokes using the same keyboard, mouse and monitor). If you are doing something that is really bogging down your computer like encoding, a few keystrokes and you can be on another computer surfing the internet or playing a game while you wait, instead of being board waiting or having slowdowns to deal with if you multitask.

As far as cost, right now there are some dirt cheap systems out there (some so cheap it might be worth gettting one to gut for parts). I’m guessing that with a new windows operating system coming out and a new amd cpu family coming out, they are closing out/reducing stocks on older computers (there are lots of clearance computers out there right now).

Normally I can put together a basic system system with similar specs for about the same price as an oem computer though. Sure you can get computers cheap after rebates but you can get parts cheap after rebates too.
Take into acount that people often upgrade the weak points of an oem computer too like a video card, sound card, more or faster memory etc. You would have that beter equipment to start with if you custom built.

Oem computers can also be crippled in function and upgradability. I recentlly bought a pci video card because it was on clearance mega cheap (thought it would be usefull for a dedicated second display like to the tv and it allows me to delay purchase of a pcie card for my latest upgraded system as I’m moving from agp to pcie). I looked online to see what it was worth, and it was not an obsolete, discontinued antique like I thought. Aparentlly there are still a lot of current pci video cards out there and looking on newegg, they sell a lot of them. The reason is that many oem computers do not have agp or pcie slots including brand new dual core systems, so if say for instance you want to upgrade your crappy onboard video, you may get stuck with a crappy pci video card that has crippled pci bandwith and is twice the price, or you could get a new motherboard.
I say that overall, custom built computers are cheaper when you take into acount the costs of an oem computer. In the long run, its a lot cheaper. Buying everything at once to build a computer compared to an oem computer may be more expensive now due to clearance computers, but once you have a custom rig, there are upgrades/parts as you go for killer sale prices not to mention killer clearance prices. I just got an athlon 64 3000 for 111$, free shipping to upgrade an athlon xp system (prices have came down since they are discontinuing the athlon 64 3000, 3200, 3500). I also found an abit ax8 motherboard (a nice 100$ motherboard) on clearance for 30$. I have already overclocked it from 1800MHz to 2500MHz with stock cooling and voltage (a very nice and free upgrade in speed). Lets see you overclock the average oem computer?

I’m off today and board waiting for my wife to take lunch so I can take the car so I’m just mindlessly typing along, not ranting or arguing or so please don’t take my long response as that. :bigsmile: :bigsmile:

In the long run I do honestly think custom is not only cheaper but beter (and a last though, you don’t have to keep paying for an operating system every time you upgrade with custom). :cool: