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 Post subject: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:25 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:47 pm
Posts: 22
I don't really have any problems with my machine, but I do seem to be lacking in some areas that I could improve on. When playing SC2 at max settings and playing in a large 4v4 game with a lot of units, I experience lag that I feel could be avoided.

I'm also sour about not getting 7.9 on the Windows Experience Index (I'm sure it is a pointless score, but it would clear my concience if it was 7.9!)

Windows Experience Index
Processor 7.6
Memory (RAM) 7.8
Graphics 7.9
Gaming graphics 7.9
Primary hard disk 7.4 (making my final score 7.4)

My Current Setup
Mobo: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 ATX LGA1155
CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz Quad-Core Processor (Overclocked to 4390.1 MHz = 44.00 x 99.8 MHz @ 1.3761 V)
CPU Cooler: Corsair H100
RAM: (16 GB Total) Corsair CML8GX3M2A1600C9 Vengeance Lowprofile 8GB 4X4GB DDR3-1600 CL9-9-9-24 Dual Channel Memory
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7970 OC 1000MHZ 3.0GB 5.5GHZ GDDR5 DVI HDMI 2XDP PCI-E Video Card
PS: OCZ ZX Series 850W 80 Plus Gold
Case: Corsair 600T
OS SSD: ADATA S510 Series AS510S3-120GM-C 2.5" 120GB SATA III SandForce SF-2281
Storage HDD: Western Digital WD10EAVS Caviar Green 1TB SATA 8MB Cache
NAS Drive: WD My Book Live 2TB Personal Cloud Storage NAS

Display
Primary Monitor: Samsung S27A350H 27IN Widescreen LCD Monitor LED Backlit 1920X1080 2MS 300CD/M2 HDMI

Network Setup
Router: NetGear WNDR3300 RangeMax Dual Band Wireless-N Router


My Thoughts on Upgrades

Monitor: Perhaps I need to upgrade my monitor to a 120Hz monitor so I can run at a higher refresh rate? Games like CS:GO, BF3 and Black Ops II might benefit from this.

Router: I think I need to invest in a Gigabit router, so my NAS Drive is connected at 1Gbps rather than 100Mbps. That will make my content streaming and moving files to and from it much easier.

RAM: What RAM could I replace my existing RAM with that I could get decent benefit from?

OS SSD: I think I need to upgrade to a newer SSD here. The read/writes on this one are lacking compared to today's Intel/Samsung SSD's. But which one is best? I'm thinking a 250GB Samsung will be a good choice.

CPU: Should I stick with my current CPU overclocked to 4.4? How does Windows rank this lower than 7.9??? My friend has an i7 3770K clocked at 3.5Ghz and he gets 7.9. Would upgrading my CPU help with the SC2 scenario I posted above?

Video Card: Should I get a second 7970?


Just looking to avoid any possible bottlenecks!


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:54 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:08 am
Posts: 56
I think you're addicted to building and tweaking.

There's not much you can really improve on. I would save your money and put it towards upgrading that puppy in a year or two.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 1:04 pm 
Clawhammer
Clawhammer
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Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2005 6:22 pm
Posts: 4406
Location: In the closet
Bottleneck shouldn't be in your vocab with this system. And a WEI is a pointless #, it's not even a real beanchmark. Areas for improvement would be your ssd for higher I/O. Zero your sights on the 830, 840 Pro or Vector. I've never understood 27" panels at 1080. If you do swap it out, get an IPS at 2560x1440. Just OC your dimms, replacing them is a waste of time and money. If you feel any slowness, it'll sure be that Green 5400rpm hdd. Everything is snapper at 7200. All this said, the holy grail of new found performance will be ebaying that 2500k and snagging a 3770k. Big difference across the board, especially if you encode or do any heavy lifting for HT. But probably best just to "live with" the 2500k and wait for Haswell to drop in a few short month. Then upgrade to it along with a new shiny 1150 mainboard. Than at about that same time find yourself a deal on and Asus DarKnight, the ac version for real Gigabit streaming.

Most importantly, anything you swap out please just drop in a box and send to me for proper re-purposing.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 1:28 pm 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
Posts: 5217
And I'll be a third opinion.

Quote:
Monitor: Perhaps I need to upgrade my monitor to a 120Hz monitor so I can run at a higher refresh rate? Games like CS:GO, BF3 and Black Ops II might benefit from this.

Okay, if you really want to.

Quote:
Router: I think I need to invest in a Gigabit router, so my NAS Drive is connected at 1Gbps rather than 100Mbps. That will make my content streaming and moving files to and from it much easier.

Anything you stream will sip bandwidth. Hell, 100Mbps could easily support 8 HD streams at once.

Quote:
RAM: What RAM could I replace my existing RAM with that I could get decent benefit from?

None. You're already at the maximum capacity I would recommend and increasing speed doesn't do you any good in the practical sense.

Quote:
OS SSD: I think I need to upgrade to a newer SSD here. The read/writes on this one are lacking compared to today's Intel/Samsung SSD's. But which one is best? I'm thinking a 250GB Samsung will be a good choice.

I don't think so, because that only affects big loads which most of the time, you're doing smaller data transfers, but more of them. Response time and IOPS are better in this regard.

Quote:
CPU: Should I stick with my current CPU overclocked to 4.4? How does Windows rank this lower than 7.9??? My friend has an i7 3770K clocked at 3.5Ghz and he gets 7.9. Would upgrading my CPU help with the SC2 scenario I posted above?

Because WEI is stupid.

Quote:
Video Card: Should I get a second 7970?

No.

Here's the thing: never continuously increase your requirements. You'll only end up in disappointment and money wasted because you're trying to keep up with the rat race. If you always want the best of the best, get disposable income first. A lot of disposable income.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:10 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:47 pm
Posts: 22
CompuSmith wrote:
I think you're addicted to building and tweaking.
very true! i love it! I am trying to learn more as I go along.
kleinkinstein wrote:
Zero your sights on the 830, 840 Pro or Vector.
I was thinking of getting the Samsung 830. Thanks for the link.
kleinkinstein wrote:
If you do swap [the monitor] out, get an IPS at 2560x1440.
I feel that 1440 is such an odd resolution. Isn't 1080p optimal? I have heard good thing about IPS and PLS. I'm trying to find a monitor with an extremely thin bezel so I can have 2 or 3 of them. I was interested in OLED, but it looks like that'll cost a ton and it won't be available for another year or two.
kleinkinstein wrote:
Just OC your dimms, replacing them is a waste of time and money.
I'll have to look into this. Never overclocked RAM before.
LatiosXT wrote:
Here's the thing: never continuously increase your requirements. You'll only end up in disappointment and money wasted because you're trying to keep up with the rat race. If you always want the best of the best, get disposable income first. A lot of disposable income.
Thankfully my situation allows me to keep my hardware up to date. I usually re-purpose my old parts by building PCs for friends and family. I don't think I'm ever really disappointed when replacing a component.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 4:30 pm 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
Posts: 5217
spikernum1 wrote:
Thankfully my situation allows me to keep my hardware up to date. I usually re-purpose my old parts by building PCs for friends and family. I don't think I'm ever really disappointed when replacing a component.

You should probably spend your money on investments then.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:10 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:47 pm
Posts: 22
LatiosXT wrote:
spikernum1 wrote:
Thankfully my situation allows me to keep my hardware up to date. I usually re-purpose my old parts by building PCs for friends and family. I don't think I'm ever really disappointed when replacing a component.

You should probably spend your money on investments then.
not to be rude, but I didn't quite come to maximumpc.com for a lesson in financials. I know my situation a little better than you ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 6:27 pm 
Smithfield
Smithfield

Joined: Sun Jun 18, 2006 7:37 pm
Posts: 5217
eeyeah, sarcasm doesn't transmit well over a wire.

We can't determine if you have a bottleneck because you never really specified what you're doing with the hardware and what you're requirements are (hard requirements, not "I want fastest possible"). Considering I'm seeing a gaming rig here, the bottleneck most of the time is the GPU. And that's if you really care about going over the 60FPS mark or 1080p. If you want the biggest numbers possible in a single tower, you're current configuration isn't even close to that configuration. In other words, complete system overhaul.

Aside from that, all games will run on maximum settings on 1080p@60FPS with a Core i5, 8GB of RAM, and a GTX670 or similar.

However I'm not implying you should go out and buy anything here. You should figure out what you want first.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 7:35 pm 
Coppermine
Coppermine
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Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 4:40 pm
Posts: 696
Changing the monitor and the router won't change your WEI. The WEI is dependent on the computer itself, not necessarily the components attached to it.

Just to level set, your WEI will be your lowest score, which was your SSD. So, let's try to go through the remaining components and see where we can make changes.

WARNING: These are recommendations, so I have no idea whether you'll actually achieve a 7.9. It will increase your rating, but for the safest bet, you probably need to search "7.9 WEI" and see where other people have achieved it and what components they are using.

Graphics: 7.9 - you achieved the 7.9 in both graphics, so your GPU is sufficient. You don't have to change anything here.

Processor: 7.6 - the lack of HT is going to hurt. Like someone suggested, you should try the 3770K and OC it. UPDATE: According to Overclock.net it took a 6-core CPU OC'd to 5.6GHz(!!) to get 7.9

RAM: 7.8 - you're as close as you can be without being there. I don't "think" the amount of RAM is the issue, but it's possible 32 is what you need. More likely, it's the speed. Perhaps OC it or get higher speed RAM.

Primary Hard Disk: 7.4 - as your posts notes, it's the primary hard disk, not your storage disk. So a slow 5400 rpm 2TB storage disk - while it may impact day-to-day performance - will not impact your WEI. Two things will: size and speed. To get to 7.9, my guess is you will need 2xSamsung 840s (830s aren't available unless you get used ones) in a RAID 0 configuration. To be on the safe side, you'll probably have to get 2x240GB.

Hope this helps.


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 9:24 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:47 pm
Posts: 22
LatiosXT wrote:
eeyeah, sarcasm doesn't transmit well over a wire.
lol apparently not!

@btdog - thanks for your recommendations! I'm not actually too concerned with getting perfect on WEI, I'm just trying to find where I can improve my build & environment. I am just annoyed at how WEI is calculated!

It looks like Samsung 840 Pro is the way to go. I read that using RAID0 with SSD's isnt the best thing to do right now. And that it performs almost the same as a single SSD (other than straight reads, which you will get double speed).

i know the router and monitor won't affect my WEI :P i just think my environment will be better overall if I have a Gigabit router since most of my devices are Gigabit capable. Why throttle them when I don't have to?

If i get a monitor that is 120Hz, it will be an improvement for my FPS games like CS:GO, BF3 and Black Ops.

Here is what I have gathered so far:
1 Grab a Samsung 840 Pro 250GB to replace my existing SSD
2 Get a new 1TB storage drive (WD Black or similar)
3 Overclock RAM
4 Look into getting a 2560x1440 IPS Panel monitor.
5 (After 1, 2 and 3 are complete) Replace the 2500K with the 3770K


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:22 am 
Clawhammer
Clawhammer
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Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2005 6:22 pm
Posts: 4406
Location: In the closet
Sounds like you've been reading some old ssd stuff. That was back in the day when Raid'ing nand would nullify TRIM. Nowadays no such issue, Raid away...both TRIM and garbage collection is supported. I have two 256 830's in Raid0 on Z77 and it hauls'ass

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 10, 2013 11:10 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:47 pm
Posts: 22
kleinkinstein wrote:
I have two 256 830's in Raid0 on Z77 and it hauls'ass
Will my motherboard return similar results as yours?

I've also read about buying a RAID controller. What are the benefits of doing this rather than just plugging in the drives and configuring RAID0 from the bios?


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 Post subject: Re: Where is my bottleneck? Help me improve my environment!
PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:28 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2012 7:55 am
Posts: 21
spikernum1 wrote:
kleinkinstein wrote:
I have two 256 830's in Raid0 on Z77 and it hauls'ass
Will my motherboard return similar results as yours?

I've also read about buying a RAID controller. What are the benefits of doing this rather than just plugging in the drives and configuring RAID0 from the bios?


Generally Better I/O performance, not by much though.

I only have a single corsair neutron GTX 120 so I would not know.


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