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Old 01-17-2013, 03:17 PM   #1
stinkoman247
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Default Looking to upgrade a 3.5 year old machine

Hello all. I have a machine that's 3.5 years old, and is in desperate need for an upgrade. It was originality for gaming, but it can't do that for shit anymore due to an ancient video card, and some-what slow cpu. here are the specs:

Pentium dual-core e5200 OC'd to 3.5 gigahertz
ati radeon HD 4830 512mb
Gigabyte EP43-UD3L
Corsair ddr2 800mz 4gig
500 gig 7200 rpm sata 2 hdd
dvd burner
Big mofo of a cooler (cooler master, don't remember what model.)

I have a small budget (only $200, but might be able to rustle up a little more if it is worth it.) I was thinking about getting a 6870 1gig, since i can get one for only $110, and later on when I have the money to get a new machine (and the new hardware is out), I could give it to my brother who has that video card plus an phenom 2 X4 395 OC'd so he could crossfire it.

I have no idea what to upgrade my cpu to however. So my questions are:

Is it a good upgrade plan to get a 6870 now and pass it on to someone who can crossfire it later, or should I get a different card?

What CPU should I get?

Ideally, I would like equivalent performance to the before mentioned phenom 2 X4 395 and amd 6870 1gig.

Thanks for reading,
Jovan.
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:21 PM   #2
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What kind of games (game titles please) adn at what resolutions
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:37 PM   #3
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Anything and everything I can through at it (crysis 2, metro 2033, chivalry: medevil warfare, and any other hard to run game you can think of.) I currently play on a measly 1280x1024 display, but I would like to be able to play up to 1920x1080. I'm not looking for insane performance or anything, just like a consistent 30 frames without drop below that ever if only rarely with some AA. I know that a phenom 2 X4 with a 6870 can do crysis 2 at dx11 with only the object detail one setting down from max and some AA at 1600X900 vary smoothly.
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:43 PM   #4
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Find yourself a quad core CPU on eBay, something like a Q6600 g1 stepping and OC it. Should be able to get near 3.5ghz on that. That plus the 6870 will be a good combo. Maybe throw in another 2 or 4 gig of ram eventually if you notice that your games are taking a lot of ram.

A core 2 quad above 3ghz is a very respectable CPU and should do you just fine though on many games you may not notice much difference from your dual since not all games can use a quad and your old dual at 3.5 is still considered quick.
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Old 01-17-2013, 03:57 PM   #5
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I forgot to mention that I will play skyrim too, and I know that game is very CPU intensive. I heard that the 9000 series quads would be good ones to get. Do you have anymore suggestions on specific quad core models to get if I can't find that one? I have no clue what lga775 quads are good.

Also, would crossfire with a second 6870 be a good upgrade for that phenom 2 computer I mentioned in say, half a year to a years time?

Thanks a lot,
Jovan.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:00 PM   #6
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You may be bottlenecked by crossfire and 9000 serkes are the best
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:01 PM   #7
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Have you looked at CPU/GPU/RAM utilization while running your favorite game(s)? More of everything is always better but knowing what the bottlenecks are can help free things up.

GPU is probably the issue but might help answer if anything else is really limiting.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:07 PM   #8
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The crossfire isn't for my intel machine, its for my brothers amd rig. I figure I will try to get a new machine in half a year or a years time, and I would donate the 6870 to him, and was wondering if that would be a good upgrade for his computer (that brings up the question "would a phenom 2 X4 935 oc'd to around 3.2 -3.5ghz be bottle-necked by crossfire?".)

To clarify, no crossfire for the intel machine.

As for the intel machine, do you guys have any specific quad core models I should look for?

thanks,
jovan.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:11 PM   #9
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@dbsseven How about I test skyrim? Would just task manager and CCC give all the info i need?
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:35 PM   #10
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I'm not an expert on Core 2 quads but I had always thought that the q6600 was a good CPU if you wanted to overclock because it has a low stock fsb of 1066 making it easy to raise the fsb and stay within supported fsb frequencies. That and they are abundant and cheap to find on eBay.
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Old 01-17-2013, 04:48 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hubb1e View Post
I'm not an expert on Core 2 quads but I had always thought that the q6600 was a good CPU if you wanted to overclock because it has a low stock fsb of 1066 making it easy to raise the fsb and stay within supported fsb frequencies. That and they are abundant and cheap to find on eBay.
IIRC, the Q6600 B3 stepping will not OC well. the G0 stepping is what you want for OC. You can probably go from 2.4Ghz stock to 3.0Ghz without much voltage change.

You can probably find one on the FS/FT forum for less than $75.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:02 PM   #12
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OK, so no one is arguing about the 6870, so I will go with that video card. And you guys are telling me I should get a Q6600 G0? So that CPU hands down, or should I check some other procs such a 9000 series?

Thanks for the help,
Jovan.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stinkoman247 View Post
OK, so no one is arguing about the 6870, so I will go with that video card. And you guys are telling me I should get a Q6600 G0? So that CPU hands down, or should I check some other procs such a 9000 series?

Thanks for the help,
Jovan.
if your budget is $200, then the 9000 series may not be a good fit. I have a Q9550, it rocks, but still mucho cash.

You would want a Q9450 and up IMO. not sure, but I think those still go for $100+
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:15 PM   #14
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after the 6870, iv'e got $90 (I could scrounge an extra 20-30 I bet), so I will see what I can get. I hope to get a CPU equivalent in speed to a phenom 2 X4 935, but we will see. If i can't find a 9000 series, the Q6600 G0 is the proc to go for?

For the 20th time, thanks,
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:17 PM   #15
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yes, Q6600 G0 will get you a quad with good performance and nice room to OC. do not get the B3 Q6600 if you plan on OC'ing at all...
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:29 PM   #16
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What about a q9300? Those are fairly cheap, would that be better that a Q6600?

BTW found q6600G0 for $50.
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:41 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stinkoman247 View Post
What about a q9300? Those are fairly cheap, would that be better that a Q6600?

BTW found q6600G0 for $50.
IMO, not really for what you want to do. The multiplier on the Q6600 is set higher, and the FSB is lower to start, so you'll get more out of it.

Questions to ask on the Q6600's

1. Was it OC'd before?
2. Was the voltage pushed further than 1.5v? (then you wouldn't want it, over 1.5v is out of spec and could've damage the CPU)
3. is it lapped? I wouldn't buy a lapped CPU
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Old 01-17-2013, 05:47 PM   #18
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Ok, I will buy Q6600G0 and ask those questions. The GPU i am getting is amd 6870 1gig.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:44 PM   #19
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Q9300 isn't bad, I have two of them, but I don't really game on my PC much if at all, so I cannot comment on gaming performance with those CPUs. They do overclock to 400FSB (3.0Ghz) very, very easily though. If you have a Gigabyte EP45 mobo, and good DDR2 RAM, you might be able to push as high as 450FSB.

Q6600 is also decent, can overclock just as well, although at max multi and 400FSB, that gives 3.6Ghz, but that CPU gets hot and draws a lot of power, so your mobo VRMs matter a lot as far as overclocking goes. So does your CPU cooling.

I have a brand-new Q6600 in box for sale, but I want $120 for it. It's a G0.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:48 PM   #20
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Q9300 isn't bad, I have two of them, but I don't really game on my PC much if at all, so I cannot comment on gaming performance with those CPUs. They do overclock to 400FSB (3.0Ghz) very, very easily though. If you have a Gigabyte EP45 mobo, and good DDR2 RAM, you might be able to push as high as 450FSB.

Q6600 is also decent, can overclock just as well, although at max multi and 400FSB, that gives 3.6Ghz, but that CPU gets hot and draws a lot of power, so your mobo VRMs matter a lot as far as overclocking goes. So does your CPU cooling.

I have a brand-new Q6600 in box for sale, but I want $120 for it. It's a G0.
Pushing past the 400FSB barrier, IMXP, is tedious....1 mhz increments, stability tests with memtest86+, then Prime95, then OCCT...it's really not worth it for the average OC'er. Not to mention adjusting RAM timings and voltages.

I wouldn't put that much time into an upgrade of this nature. If you get 3 more years out of the 775 platform, you got your moneys worth.

I've been rockin' 775 for about 5 years now, I consider myself lucky to stay on a platform this long.
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Old 01-17-2013, 06:58 PM   #21
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I bought a Q6600G0 for $66 off of ebay. I did not have time for the questions, but it looks like it is in excellent condition, no sand paper scratches lol.

Is $110 a good deal on a amd 6870 1gig, or should I wait for the bidding wars to come?
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:00 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stinkoman247 View Post
I bought a Q6600G0 for $66 off of ebay. I did not have time for the questions, but it looks like it is in excellent condition, no sand paper scratches lol.

Is $110 a good deal on a amd 6870 1gig, or should I wait for the bidding wars to come?
I cannot help in the VGA area, sorry
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Old 01-17-2013, 07:02 PM   #23
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I think i'm going to go ahead and buy that GPU at $110, iv'e never seen that card at a guaranteed price that low.

Thank you all for your help!
Jovan.
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Old 01-17-2013, 08:24 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stinkoman247 View Post
I bought a Q6600G0 for $66 off of ebay. I did not have time for the questions, but it looks like it is in excellent condition, no sand paper scratches lol.

Is $110 a good deal on a amd 6870 1gig, or should I wait for the bidding wars to come?
Good catch on the CPU. As for the GPU, that's a perfectly fair price IMHO.
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Old 01-17-2013, 08:29 PM   #25
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Quote:
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I have a brand-new Q6600 in box for sale, but I want $120 for it. It's a G0.
I think I know why you never sell anything Larry! You're gonna be holding onto that G0 for a long time (maybe forever) at that price.

Even in the best case (a good-scaling 3D rendering benchmark), it's slower than a $120 processor you can buy from Newegg (i3 2100). So your only hope of selling it is to somebody who has an existing LGA 775 system and only $120 to spend. That kind of person isn't looking for NIB processors, they want the cheapest used part they can find.
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