As i know, to run this emulator better than ever, you´ll have to change your processor for Intel...A Quad-core would be great.
This emulator has a focus on processor and change your VGA for 9800GT would run fantastic.
Yes, advise to change the GPU to a 9800GT, when the 9800GT is the very same card
(within 99.9%, which I consider within the exact range) as the 8800GT that's already had.
As for the CPU, it has only half to do with frequency. The other half is IPC.
It goes like this.
IPC (instructions per clock) plus frequency equals speed (there's also now the variable of number of cores, and on top of that, that's not so clear either since not all software is multi-threaded, so it gets really confusing).
You're thinking simply that frequency equals speed. There's also the IPC matter. In other words, A Pentium 4 at 3GHz is not even anywhere near as fast as a Core 2 at 3GHz (and that's not even counting the extra cores, we're just talking single-threaded versus single-threaded performance here).
So basically, not this...
frequency = speed
frequency + this thing called IPC = speed
Does it make a little more sense now?
As for PCSX2, a faster dual core CPU gets better results. The extra cores over two sit completely unused, and while that will very likely change sometime soon, the extra boost you'll likely soon get from a quad core CPU won't be all that much (like we saw from one core to two) becuase the things being split are smaller things that won't see much from getting their own core (right now, I believe it's split with the graphics work on one core, and the rest on the other?). If this upgrade is solely for PCSX2, a dual core is better if you ask me.
Now, without overclocking, the Core 2 Duo E8400 (@3.0GHz) or the Core 2 Duo E8500 (@3.16GHz) is the best choice. It's not the fastest, but the faster ones cost much more for only a little more default speed. Yes, overclocking can be done on and off, but I won't pressure you to overclock. I will just say that with any half decent motherboard (you'll need a new one anyway to swap to one of those two CPUs) and an aftermarket cooler, 4GHz on one of those two CPUs is ridiculously
easy, and will be just about the ideal setup for PCSX2.