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 Post subject: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 7:39 pm 
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I am thinking of upgrading my PC which I use for gaming as I am having some issues with it now and rather than replace just one or two parts I might as well get it upgraded now. I am thinking of buying a new MB,CPU,RAM,power supply and GPU. The parts I have got my eyes on are:

I have windows 7 Home 32bit but will be installing 64bit
MB:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131790

CPU:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115072

RAM:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148545

Power Supply:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817104099

The GPU is the only part I am having trouble deciding on as some models seem to be very hard to buy now and the remaining I am not sure if they would be a good investment now or should I wait to buy it later. The two I have been looking at are:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130655
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814150517

Let me know your thoughts.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:38 pm 
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Welcome back to the forum!

How much do you have to play with your budget? What games do you play? Are you going to be using this PC for other tasks/apps? What exactly are you coming off of (list your current PC specs), mainly what case you would be sticking the new stuff in?

And just to note, if you can't wait for Ivy Bridge, 7800 series AMD gpu's or nvidia kepler cards, then building your new rig around the i5 2500k is still a very good choice. As for the 580 gtx... not so much. AMD's new 7970 beats it by 30%+ for the same price and honestly, EVGA has some killer sales on newegg right now for the older GTX 480 for $250 a piece. They perform the same as the GTX 570's but they do take more power; for the price point, its a sick price (specially if you are like me and need a few gpu's to warm up your room... lol).

The best in value z68 motherboard to pair with current gen sandy bridge chips (and future ivy bridge) is the Asrock Extreme3 Gen3 motherboard. For $130, you get a lot of features with quality components without all the extra stuff you don't need or the high price tag. It still supports both a two card SLI/xfire setup and the new pcie 3.0 interface (but you need a 3.0 capable GPU and CPU (ivy bridge) to take advantage of this). It's also stable at high overclocks of 5ghz, provided you have proper cooling.

And holy crap on the ram dude... you will be paying almost double the price from going 4GB to 8GB sticks, specially considering for a gaming rig, you won't really need anything more than a simple $40-50 set of 8GB (2x4gb) or grab a 16gb kit (4x4gb) for half the price of the one you selected. I doubt you would ever use that much anyhow, or need all 32GB of space on this type of rig.

As for Power Supply, for that price, I'd look at other offerings. You would be paying quite the premium for 80+gold standard efficiency below 850w. For not a whole lot more, you can get the OCZ ZX or Z series PSU that are 80+gold rated for cheaper or similar price point. I run the 850 that I got for $80 AR and supports my triple 570 SLI setup. The 1000w versions were $110 during the same sale and kinda wished I bumped it up to that so I had some OC headroom. For a two card solution, 850 would be enough with OC. If you went with the 480 deal, I'd say bump it up to the 1000w, they eat a lot more power each (Over 300w each compared to 220-250w of the 580 at stock).


Here's what I listed:


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 5:29 am 
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The parts I picked was mainly for updatability later on. If I wanted to add another GPU or two to extend the life of the PC. The parts I'm upgrading from are:

Power Supply: SILVERSTONE ST56F 560W ATX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817163112

MB: ASUS Striker Extreme LGA 775 NVIDIA nForce 680i SLI
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131074

CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6850 Conroe 3.0GHz LGA 775
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115028

Ram: CORSAIR XMS2 2GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820145034

GPU: ASUS EN8800GTX/HTDP/768M GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814121033

The case I have to put all this in is the Antec Nine Hundred:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129021


The price I am looking for is around a thousand.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 5:58 am 
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Honestly, a 2 card 480 SLI system is more than enough power to push a 1600p 30" display. Anything more and its just pushing useless frames. Multi-display gaming sucks still until they get the perspective and viewing angle fixed on both nvidia and amd solutions. Alternatively to the 480's is AMD's 6950 2gb cards for the same price; put them in xfire and it should be about the same performance or close to it. The 480/570's sit right between the 6950 and 6970's, stock for stock.


Also, just food for thought, with P67/Z68 boards, you only get 16 dedicated pcie lanes with sandy bridge chips for the graphics. For a 2 card setup, you'll get 8x/8x. For a 3 card setup, it could be an 8x/8x with the 3rd using the pcie lanes shared with your chipset bandwidth such as gigabit ethernet, audio, usb, sata and anything else hooked up to your pcie/pci slots; its also usually limited to 4x. Some may do it differently of where its 8x/4x/4x. Using high end gpu's, they can easily saturate a 4x lane.

There are some boards that use the NF200 nvidia chip, but it doesn't add more lanes, in this instance, they act more like co-processors helping with the workload of the chipset for the lanes that are tied to it. It does nothing for the dedicate lanes straight from the cpu.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 8:53 am 
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NVIDIA® NF200 Chip Onboard (Dual VGA cards at PCI-E x16/x16; three VGA cards at x16 / x8 / x8)

http://www.asrock.com/mb/overview.asp?M ... ifications

Sounds like BS to me but that is the claim... If there was someway to compress the information maybe you could avoid that issue but that would just add latency.

I wouldn't get 480's, especially for SLI they are furnaces and SLI will cause more problems. Get some 560ti's and SLI those, they only use 35watts more power in SLI than a single 480.

On a side note:

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:53 am 
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Yeah the NF200 chips doesn't add lanes or compresses it, it just manages the data traffic better and offloads graphics managing duties off the chipset. It was helpful back in the day before cpu's gave dedicated lanes to the graphics, but its just a marketing ploy now and the reason why you really don't see it that much on newer boards very often. Specially now that lga 2011's are out; they just completely nullify it.

Dan, again... while the 480's do eat up more power and produce more heat (of which I made this case in my posts), it does hit a better price/performance than the 560ti's. Even I would admit that the OP should look at other lower power offerings, but for $250, its not a bad deal since he has the budget to afford a beefier PSU and heat shouldn't be a big issue for his case. I've got a few friends who still run tri and quad 480's with no heat issues.

The 480's run the same as the 570 and the 6970 for $70 cheaper. A good alternative is a single 7970, SLI 560ti 448's or xfire 6950 2gb for the same costs. The SLI 480 will beat them all.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:03 am 
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3 fps better on crysis in sli than a 560 ti sli I would get the 560s
http://www.guru3d.com/article/geforce-g ... i-review/7

3d mark vantage.. it beats it
http://www.guru3d.com/article/geforce-g ... i-review/8

The only tests I have seen where it loses are with dx11 titles with tessellation on and multiple levels of AA (8x) and even in those cases the framerates are playable. And that is with the ti cards not the 448 cards.

So for $40 more per card you get barely any performance increase and a lot more power and heat usage.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814125401

And if you like EVGA this one is $200 after rebate http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6814130623


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:30 am 
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Well... Didn't see the 560ti's were $200, they were going for $230-220 a few days ago... then yeah, I would say the 480's are out for SLI, but even then, the 1.5GB vram buffer does make up for it in some games, like BF3 and Skyrim (with HD rez pack). I would still be inclined to look for the gtx 560 ti448's if they get back down to the $250 a piece price tag of last week/two weeks ago, but right now they are $280 for almost the same performance (1-2 frames slower than the 480/570).

If OP is worried about power, then yeah, go with 500 series gtx's, but the 480's will hold its own in most other games with a 10%+ buffer like BC2, Dirt 2 and 2033.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 10:59 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:14 pm
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I want to thank you guys for giving me ideas I appreciate it. From your suggestions how would this MB and GPU combo work

ASUS Maximus IV Gene-Z/GEN3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131806

With 2x EVGA 01G-P3-1561-KR GeForce GTX 560 Ti
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814130623


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:02 am 
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Why do you want a micro-ATX board? aren't you putting this in the ATX case?


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:32 pm 
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Its not so much I want a micro-ATX but that board has decent onboard audio so I won't need my audio card and if I read it right if I put two GPUs in it they would both be 16x PCIe.


***edit****
That is my fault, I posted the wrong board. The correct board should be:

ASUS Maximus IV Extreme-Z LGA 1155 Intel Z68
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131760


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:06 pm 
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The question you should be asking yourself is, do you really need to spend $200 more for a board that have more usb 3.0 ports, 2 additional pcie x16 slots, a 2nd gigabit Ethernet port, 4 sataIII and 2 esata ports? It runs basically the same realtek audio chip as the cheaper Asrock Ext3 Gen3 board. And besides, you can only run 2 card SLI with the 560 ti's so its a gross waste of money for a board like that.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:28 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:14 pm
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I understand that is kind of a big jump in price, but I want to be able to use dual 16x GPUs in the board. Even though I currently have listed the 560 ti's now I was hoping to get something that I can upgrade later. Is it not worth it to do that given this socket might be gone soon?


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 2:00 pm 
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You can't physically have 16x/16x on a sandy bridge or even ivy bridge sockets. Each of those cpu's only dedicate 16 lanes of pcie 2.0 or 3.0 for graphics. Anything else is either lying or using the normal p67/z68 chipset pcie bus that is shared with every other device on the board (such as LAN, USB, SATA, audio); but under the z68 tech specs (stock layout), you can only get an extra 8x lanes of pcie. SATAIII eats up a lot of your assorted 20 Gb/s with USB 2.0 and 3.0 being the other big bandwidth hog.

If you want "future ability", then get pcie 3.0 slots, not 2.0. Doubles your bandwidth in the lanes so 8x pcie 3.0 will be the same as 16x pcie 2.0 in MT data rates. But you'll need a 3.0 gpu and cpu to mesh with the 3.0 slots.


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:33 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:14 pm
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If I am only going with the two 560 Ti GPUs wouldnt it be better to get the ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157271

vs the ASRock Z68 Extreme7 Gen3
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157269


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 Post subject: Re: Upgrades for gaming PC
PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 6:07 pm 
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yes, for your build, the ext3 gen3 board is more appropriate. Unless you need all the extra features of the higher end boards like crazy amount of sata connectors, usb 3.0 (internal socket as well), esata and other features; its worthless to spend almost double the price for a board with features you will never use. The 560 ti SLI will last you quite a long time; by the time you need to update the gpu's to 3.0 pcie versions, your board and cpu would probably be outdated.


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