Throwing good money after bad - e8400 to q9950?

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infoiltrator

Senior member
Feb 9, 2011
704
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0
#26
If your E8400 does the job well enough, wait.
New for the sake of new is not good sense,
 

alyarb

Platinum Member
Jan 25, 2009
2,446
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#27
AT really needs to update the bench database so that old and new CPUs display common game bench results with a common GPU. I wouldn't look at the game bench results the way they are now.

For a majority of applications, a high-frequency Penryn is still perfectly relevant. For games, there is a pretty healthy mix of which games demand 4 cores and which games do not. If you spend $400+ migrating to a newer intel or AMD machine, you had better be sure that you're going to get $400 worth of additional performance.

Considering you're at 3.8 GHz with this E8400... the only way you are going to get the 30+% boost in single-threaded performance is if your new CPU is overclocked as well, hopefully to 4.6 GHz+. It would be nice, I just don't think it's worth $400. It sounds like you have already made these considerations as well. It depends on the games that you play.

If you can get a Q9550 for $100 and sell your E8400 for $40, that is a very good upgrade and makes much more sense for you than a total rebuild. It should clock to about the same freq as your current CPU and make up for most of the weaknesses you're seeing in heavily threaded games.

When you look at an E8400 vs a Pentium G850, they are very close clock-for-clock. The i3/i5/i7 chips have turbo, and you have mitigated that with a 27% overclock. Now you just need to go a little wider without overspending and I think you will be in a good place for another year or so.

I think the Q9550 and SSD would do more for you than going all out with a $400 overclocked ivy setup. With a CPU like that and a GTX 460, that would make the GPU the limiting factor, and for a budget-conscious gamer, that is a sign that your funds were not portioned out to your subsystems correctly. You should be looking for the cheapest balance you can get such that the GPU is not limited.
 

sm625

Diamond Member
May 6, 2011
8,176
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#28
I was actually looking at a used i5 750 with a motherboard for around $150. I dunno, I didn't look much into it. How does an i5 750 compare to an E8400 or Q9550?
Lynnfield totally destroys the core2 chips. By huge noticeable margins. I went from a 3.2GHz Q6600 to the i5-750. Honestly clock speeds make absolutely no difference in the feel of the systems. The i5 at stock speeds blows away the overclocked Q6600. And when I overclock the i5? It still feels about the same in typical usage. It's the FSB and other interconnects that you really feel imo. I still have the Q6600 system running in my house and I dont like (or understand) how slow it feels in comparison. Both systems have SSDs.
 

TemjinGold

Diamond Member
Dec 16, 2006
3,050
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#29
Do you game? That's really the only reason to make that upgrade. For ordinary desktop tasks, 1080P movie watching, etc., the C2Q is totally sufficient.
I game at 1080p (hence the 580). I just honestly didn't see any difference in performance. Don't get me wrong, I think a dual to quad upgrade is a good idea.
 
May 17, 2011
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#30
With a CPU like that and a GTX 460, that would make the GPU the limiting factor, and for a budget-conscious gamer, that is a sign that your funds were not portioned out to your subsystems correctly. You should be looking for the cheapest balance you can get such that the GPU is not limited.
That's a pretty solid point I hadn't really considered. I'd be stretching to spend the $350-400 on an i5, so a $150-200 videocard would definitely be out of the picture for quite a while.


Thinking I've definitely ruled out the big upgrade for a while. Still not totally sure what to do next, but someone else mentioned "upgrading for the sake of upgrading" and I think that might be what I'm trying to do here - so maybe I'll just try to forget about it for a while.
 

pauldun170

Diamond Member
Sep 26, 2011
5,776
170
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#31
Lynnfield totally destroys the core2 chips. By huge noticeable margins. I went from a 3.2GHz Q6600 to the i5-750. Honestly clock speeds make absolutely no difference in the feel of the systems. The i5 at stock speeds blows away the overclocked Q6600. And when I overclock the i5? It still feels about the same in typical usage. It's the FSB and other interconnects that you really feel imo. I still have the Q6600 system running in my house and I dont like (or understand) how slow it feels in comparison. Both systems have SSDs.
I wouldn't say the i5-750 destroys a q9550. Not at all.


http://forums.vr-zone.com/news-arou...-0ghz-43-benchmarks-single-ati-5850-1ghz.html
 

pauldun170

Diamond Member
Sep 26, 2011
5,776
170
126
#32
Id throw down 50 - 75 on a Q9550, its old tech, not HT, locked multi, high power usage, low OC, low performance, no AVX (if thats what youre into) no L3 cache. Not to mention dead socket + DDR2.
Q9550 is old
HT is irrelevant.
Q9550 EO over clocks VERY well.
It does still perform very well, just not i5 or i7 class.
No L3 cache...not sure why it matters. It does have 12mb of L2.
Measuring power draw at the wall, my q9550 box paired with an old x800xl I had lying around pulls not much more than my i7-2700K + gtx-570 at idle.
Not quite apples to apples. Both chips are at identical clocks at the moment. The q9550 paired with a 212plus typically idles at 9c-10c over ambient doesn't exceed 50c at full load\prime 95 for an hour.
There is a lot of headroom on the chip

Dead socket...very true. So is 1156. 1155 is going to be bargain bin in a few months. Most important is that DDr2 availability is limited.

In my opinion if paired with a solid mobo, a q9550 isnt the worst thing in the world.
$100 for a solid q9550 rig is probably a better buy than a new low end IVY rig. Especially with Haswell around the corner.
My vote is negotiate to a lower price or just save for Haswell.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/quad-core-cpu,2499.html
 
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moonbogg

Diamond Member
Jan 8, 2011
9,759
64
126
#33
Thinking I've definitely ruled out the big upgrade for a while.
I was in your exact situation a couple of years ago. I had an E8400 with two GTX260's and had trouble running BF Bad Company 2 because it needs a quad core to run properly. I was looking a the Q9650 as a temporary upgrade because I didn't have a job, had very little money but wanted an upgrade really bad.
I decided to wait. I got a job, saved my money and bought a new i7 2600K system with GTX 570's and it was worth it in every way. I suggest you wait until you can do it right. It won't make you any happier when you are unsatisfied with a semi-upgrade and are out $100 which could have gone toward a real upgrade later.
If it is even possible for you to really stretch your wallet and buy a $400 upgrade right now, then if you wait a while and save, it won't be too long before its more comfortable for you to do so and it will be very much worth it.
 

Termie

Diamond Member
Aug 17, 2005
7,951
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www.techbuyersguru.com
#34
OP, do you actually have a budget set out? That would help us give you advice. You were shopping for something new on Black Friday, and I assume you were going to spend more than $100.

I helped set up several forum users here with a z77 motherboard, 8GB of RAM, and a 3570k for $300. So there were definitely deals to be had...

Anyway, back on topic, if your budget is $200-300, you have many options, none of which should include a q9550. In fact, even an i3-2100 will outperform it in many games.

I previously had a GTX460-768 in an OC'd e8400 system. The truth is that it ran every game released in the past two years terribly. Bad Company 2 was barely playable, Batman: AC was capped at 30fps on high settings, Dirt2 was bottlenecked below 60fps. I wouldn't bother with BF3 on that CPU. Once I upgraded the system to an i7-860, everything ran so much more smoothly.

If you're on a really tight budget, go used. Otherwise, you can still get a locked i5 quad, H77 MB, and memory for under $300.
 

Eureka

Diamond Member
Sep 6, 2005
3,827
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#35
OP, do you actually have a budget set out? That would help us give you advice. You were shopping for something new on Black Friday, and I assume you were going to spend more than $100.

I helped set up several forum users here with a z77 motherboard, 8GB of RAM, and a 3570k for $300. So there were definitely deals to be had...

Anyway, back on topic, if your budget is $200-300, you have many options, none of which should include a q9550. In fact, even an i3-2100 will outperform it in many games.

I previously had a GTX460-768 in an OC'd e8400 system. The truth is that it ran every game released in the past two years terribly. Bad Company 2 was barely playable, Batman: AC was capped at 30fps on high settings, Dirt2 was bottlenecked below 60fps. I wouldn't bother with BF3 on that CPU. Once I upgraded the system to an i7-860, everything ran so much more smoothly.

If you're on a really tight budget, go used. Otherwise, you can still get a locked i5 quad, H77 MB, and memory for under $300.
If you're on a budget, I'd say that's doing it wrong. i5-2500k has been $100 on sale at microcenter, wait for that, walk in and walk out with that and a motherboard for $160 and tax. 8gb DDR3-1600 ram is $25 or just re-use what you have, full upgrade for $185.
 

Termie

Diamond Member
Aug 17, 2005
7,951
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www.techbuyersguru.com
#36
If you're on a budget, I'd say that's doing it wrong. i5-2500k has been $100 on sale at microcenter, wait for that, walk in and walk out with that and a motherboard for $160 and tax. 8gb DDR3-1600 ram is $25 or just re-use what you have, full upgrade for $185.
Sorry, but that's all wrong.

2500k for $99 was a one-shot deal, and there's no indication the OP is anywhere near a MicroCenter. Furthermore, the motherboard bundle deal didn't apply with the $99 price.

Finally, he can't reuse his RAM - it's DDR2.

So, back to reality, he can buy an i5 for $170 if he's near a Microcenter or $200 from Newegg, a $60 motherboard, and cheap RAM for $260, or a 3570k and a z77 motherboard plus RAM for $350. Too bad he missed the Black Friday deal on this for $300.

Sorry to take this out on you, Eureka, but I'm kind of tired of people here suggesting expired MicroCenter deals to people who don't live anywhere near a MicroCenter and can't time travel either. If he's looking now, and needs to buy online, quoting those deals is just a distraction. And yes, I bought my 3770k at MicroCenter, so I'm familiar with the deals.
 
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May 17, 2011
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#37
Ahh, I dunno. By the way, no Microcenter. I wouldn't be here if there was one!


I can get an i5 750 and decent motherboard for $90, I'd buy some $30 DDR3, a $120 upgrade ($30 of which is transferable assuming DDR3 doesn't go anywhere). Used, but it's from a friend who just decided to upgrade. What do you guys think? I think I'll go for it. I mean, it's a dead socket, but whatever, right? I bet I could even sell my current system for a good chunk of that $120. My cooler works on that socket, so I could OC for free.
 
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Termie

Diamond Member
Aug 17, 2005
7,951
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www.techbuyersguru.com
#38
Ahh, I dunno. By the way, no Microcenter. I wouldn't be here if there was one!


I can get an i5 750 and decent motherboard for $90, I'd buy some $30 DDR3, a $120 upgrade ($30 of which is transferable assuming DDR3 doesn't go anywhere). Used, but it's from a friend who just decided to upgrade. What do you guys think? I think I'll go for it. I mean, it's a dead socket, but whatever, right? I bet I could even sell my current system for a good chunk of that $120. My cooler works on that socket, so I could OC for free.
The i5-750 would be a huge upgrade for you, especially if it has any OC headroom. As long as your friend's system is in perfect working order, I'd say this is the option.
 

moonbogg

Diamond Member
Jan 8, 2011
9,759
64
126
#39
Ahh, I dunno. By the way, no Microcenter. I wouldn't be here if there was one!


I can get an i5 750 and decent motherboard for $90, I'd buy some $30 DDR3, a $120 upgrade ($30 of which is transferable assuming DDR3 doesn't go anywhere). Used, but it's from a friend who just decided to upgrade. What do you guys think? I think I'll go for it. I mean, it's a dead socket, but whatever, right? I bet I could even sell my current system for a good chunk of that $120. My cooler works on that socket, so I could OC for free.
GO for it.
 

Jacky60

Golden Member
Jan 3, 2010
1,123
0
0
#40
I'd go 2500k or wait for haswell. I used to have the E8400 and considered the same upgrade path as you are in 2009 and even then I decided i7 was a much better idea. Q9550 is pretty pedestrian compared to today's offerings and I wouldn't buy one now unless it's $20 or thereabouts. You'd be much better upgrading cpu and mobo with something much more modern.
 

Hubb1e

Senior member
Aug 25, 2011
397
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#41
I can get an i5 750 and decent motherboard for $90, I'd buy some $30 DDR3, a $120 upgrade ($30 of which is transferable assuming DDR3 doesn't go anywhere). Used, but it's from a friend who just decided to upgrade. What do you guys think? I think I'll go for it. I mean, it's a dead socket, but whatever, right? I bet I could even sell my current system for a good chunk of that $120. My cooler works on that socket, so I could OC for free.
I was going to say to wait for your next major upgrade only because your Core2 is clocked so high, but this deal is very nice. 1155 is sort of a dead socket too. All the CPUs that will be offered on it are already out so it's not like it is upgradable past what we have today. DDR2 is your major issue so this gets you DDR3 and a quad. A done deal IMO.
 

infoiltrator

Senior member
Feb 9, 2011
704
0
0
#42
An I5 750 and a decent motherboard for $90, the first generation Core are still fine performers.
I would.
 

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