Question What "cheap" current processor/MB should I be looking at for "gaming light"?

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Lil'John

Senior member
Dec 28, 2013
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Bringing this back up as I'm getting ready to pull the trigger in the next 2-3 weeks... old machine appears to have given up the ghost:rolleyes:

I'm leaning toward the 12100F route... the ~$110 for CPU is what looks good.

In order to use my old SLI 560ti's, I need to find a SLI supporting motherboard. I understand that SLI would require a Z series board but I'm not finding anything. I found just Crossfire setups.

So what are my options if any? I want price out going SLI with upper end board vs a dedicated single card with "cheap" board.
 

tamz_msc

Diamond Member
Jan 5, 2017
3,308
3,197
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Bringing this back up as I'm getting ready to pull the trigger in the next 2-3 weeks... old machine appears to have given up the ghost:rolleyes:

I'm leaning toward the 12100F route... the ~$110 for CPU is what looks good.

In order to use my old SLI 560ti's, I need to find a SLI supporting motherboard. I understand that SLI would require a Z series board but I'm not finding anything. I found just Crossfire setups.

So what are my options if any? I want price out going SLI with upper end board vs a dedicated single card with "cheap" board.
Dedicated single card is the way to go. 560 Ti is obsolete - no driver improvements, not to mention no SLI support in games. The only problem being that there exists no sub-$200 card that isn't a couple of generations old. You'll get a nice RX 6600 if you spend $250 though.

 
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scannall

Golden Member
Jan 1, 2012
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Bringing this back up as I'm getting ready to pull the trigger in the next 2-3 weeks... old machine appears to have given up the ghost:rolleyes:

I'm leaning toward the 12100F route... the ~$110 for CPU is what looks good.

In order to use my old SLI 560ti's, I need to find a SLI supporting motherboard. I understand that SLI would require a Z series board but I'm not finding anything. I found just Crossfire setups.

So what are my options if any? I want price out going SLI with upper end board vs a dedicated single card with "cheap" board.
Personally I'd ditch your pair of 560's. Something like this should be fine for your needs. Budget Intel Build
 

Rigg

Senior member
May 6, 2020
269
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Personally I'd ditch your pair of 560's. Something like this should be fine for your needs. Budget Intel Build
Meh. A little more budget gets you way more value. Either way your motherboard and memory picks are not good. The MSI PRO B660M-A isn't exactly a great motherboard either but it's about the only motherboard below $160 that can handle 200+ watts. 2133 MT/s in 2022? That's a bizarre choice muh dude.



Bringing this back up as I'm getting ready to pull the trigger in the next 2-3 weeks... old machine appears to have given up the ghost:rolleyes:

I'm leaning toward the 12100F route... the ~$110 for CPU is what looks good.

In order to use my old SLI 560ti's, I need to find a SLI supporting motherboard. I understand that SLI would require a Z series board but I'm not finding anything. I found just Crossfire setups.

So what are my options if any? I want price out going SLI with upper end board vs a dedicated single card with "cheap" board.
That sucks your machine bit it. If you are really interested in saving some money you need to be patient. The deals are popping up already. This trend will continue through the end of the year and beyond for current gen stuff.

Check here frequently: https://www.reddit.com/r/buildapcsales/

If you are US based, and have a Micro Center in your area, sign up for their offer emails and consider one of their credit cards for a further 5% discount. Keep an eye out for open box deals on stuff as well. They'll give you the bundle deal on open box mobos if you ask.
 

Lil'John

Senior member
Dec 28, 2013
261
17
81
Meh. A little more budget gets you way more value. Either way your motherboard and memory picks are not good. The MSI PRO B660M-A isn't exactly a great motherboard either but it's about the only motherboard below $160 that can handle 200+ watts. <snip microcenter++>
I'm still doing some looking. But what about that motherboard was a failure? Obviously, since I'm looking at a 12100F, I'm not going to be doing any overclocking or other serious stuff.

I'm really not worried about "upgrading" CPUs at a later date... the last time I changed CPUs was when a machine blew up a 6700k so I dropped a Celeron on the board.

Buying a new dedicated card that is this year's version of my 560ti's isn't in the cards right now.:oops: An extra ~$100+ on a MB that supports SLI is more stomachable than $250++ on a new GPU.

My goal is cpu, MB, and memory right now. My PSU and case should be fine (SilverStone GD08B with EVGA 650G with 24 pin EATX plug)
 

Rigg

Senior member
May 6, 2020
269
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I'm still doing some looking. But what about that motherboard was a failure? Obviously, since I'm looking at a 12100F, I'm not going to be doing any overclocking or other serious stuff.

I'm really not worried about "upgrading" CPUs at a later date... the last time I changed CPUs was when a machine blew up a 6700k so I dropped a Celeron on the board.

Buying a new dedicated card that is this year's version of my 560ti's isn't in the cards right now.:oops: An extra ~$100+ on a MB that supports SLI is more stomachable than $250++ on a new GPU.

My goal is cpu, MB, and memory right now. My PSU and case should be fine (SilverStone GD08B with EVGA 650G with 24 pin EATX plug)
Power delivery. That MSI board is the only I've seen in that price tier that has a passable VRM. For $15 it might be worth it just in case you change your mind later on a CPU upgrade.

I'm going to go with the consensus and say ditch the 560ti's and move on. SLI is dead. 560ti's are ancient. Spending an extra $100 (probably more) on a motherboard to keep them going is just being stubborn.

What are you willing to spend? At least give a range.

Do you have a Micro Center in your area?

Are more modern used parts an option or are you insisting on new?
 

AtenRa

Lifer
Feb 2, 2009
13,817
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I also wouldn't recommend a quad core to anyone looking to game these days.
I have a 12100 , care to elaborate about the non gaming recommendation ??

I will also recommend the Core i3 12100F + RX6500XT for light gaming vs 5600G/5700G
 

Lil'John

Senior member
Dec 28, 2013
261
17
81
@Rigg thank you for the clarification on the MB.

Sadly, the closest SuperMicro is almost 500 miles and the closest "computer" store was about 100 miles with Fry's electronics that is now defunct:confused_old:

Used equip is always on the table but the challenge is the "good" deals aren't always with the reputable guys online(Ebay, Amazon, NewEgg, etc) I've been lucky with my last two MBs, memory, and one CPU. But I see a lot of "I got burned" type reports that I'm mildly concerned.

I hate putting a hard budget on things because I find it usually leads to cheaping out on parts. I'd rather spend a bit more for quality brands/parts or "knowns" that I've had good luck with. Thus I've done almost Intel and Nvidia for everything computer since a Cyrix in 1992:eek: Same with ASUS though last two MBs were AsRock. I tend to target based upon function and let the budget breath a little bit.

Right now, I believe that the Intel i3 12100F(or whatever has IGP) or AMD equiv will do exactly what I need. I don't think I need a 6/12 i5 or similar and thus I'm not going to expand the budget $50 or more to get one.

The MB is where I kind of "fail" since I've normally done Z and premium ones so I'm not 100% on my ability to pick B or H budget style in the $100-$150 range.

The memory to me is a commodity so it will basically be what it is going to be for 16GB.

My case, processor power supply, and drive(s) are all in good shape so I will reuse them.
 
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VirtualLarry

No Lifer
Aug 25, 2001
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I would retire the 560's because of the power and heat alone.

On CPU: The i5 12400 or Ryzen 5600 are the best bang for buck now. Good B660 boards are also dropping in price. There are 32GB kits of 3600MHz for under $100. That is the build I would do. Forget IGP and couple it with a newer used card. A used GTX 1660 can be had for $140 https://www.ebay.com/p/2318581991?iid=354201154456
You can get kits of off-branded RAM (OLOY, neo Forza), 32GB kit of 3200, or even some decent Team Group VulcanZ DDR4 for around $80-90 right now.

It's a real crapshoot to get DDR4 higher than 3200 to run acceptably with a 12100F or 12400F, as the locked non-K CPU SKUs evidently lock down one of the intermediate voltages as well, meaning that you can't get DRAM or the memory controller to clock as high on non-K SKUs. 3200 DDR4, OTOH, is officially supported, I think.

So I concur on going with 32GB of cheap DDR4, but I would opt for 3200 instead of 3600, for less hassle.
 

Rigg

Senior member
May 6, 2020
269
513
106
@Rigg thank you for the clarification on the MB.

Sadly, the closest SuperMicro is almost 500 miles and the closest "computer" store was about 100 miles with Fry's electronics that is now defunct:confused_old:
That's too bad. https://www.reddit.com/r/buildapcsales/ is your friend then.

Used equip is always on the table but the challenge is the "good" deals aren't always with the reputable guys online(Ebay, Amazon, NewEgg, etc) I've been lucky with my last two MBs, memory, and one CPU. But I see a lot of "I got burned" type reports that I'm mildly concerned.
Craigslist and FB Marketplace are where I find the best used deals. That comes with it's own set up risks/challenges though. I buy tons of stuff and have never been burned. YMMV.

I hate putting a hard budget on things because I find it usually leads to cheaping out on parts. I'd rather spend a bit more for quality brands/parts or "knowns" that I've had good luck with. Thus I've done almost Intel and Nvidia for everything computer since a Cyrix in 1992:eek: Same with ASUS though last two MBs were AsRock. I tend to target based upon function and let the budget breath a little bit.
I get what you are saying but it's making it a bit of a challenge to make logical recommendations.

Right now, I believe that the Intel i3 12100F(or whatever has IGP) or AMD equiv will do exactly what I need. I don't think I need a 6/12 i5 or similar and thus I'm not going to expand the budget $50 or more to get one.
That's the rub. There really is no AMD equivalent to the 12100. For your specific situation it seems like a good match though for most people I'd recommend the 12400 or 5600 and a motherboard good enough for a future upgrade. AMD tends to be a lot easier to find crazy deals on though.


I grabbed that deal a month ago. I needed a mobo for a 5700g build and AM4 deals were dry. I ended up finding the same board factory refurbed from Woot for $85 w/tax a few weeks later. I was going to swap boards and return the combo, but I slacked and missed my return window. Now i have an OEM 5600x and a workhorse b550 board i need to flip. Oh well.

The MB is where I kind of "fail" since I've normally done Z and premium ones so I'm not 100% on my ability to pick B or H budget style in the $100-$150 range.
There isn't much to go on besides VRM testing which isn't really all that relevant if you plan to permanently stick a 12100 in the socket. You'll have to wade through feature sets, and individual user reviews (tossing out bad reviews that are clearly user error) to see what's what.

12700_All.png


 
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Thunder 57

Golden Member
Aug 19, 2007
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I'm still doing some looking. But what about that motherboard was a failure? Obviously, since I'm looking at a 12100F, I'm not going to be doing any overclocking or other serious stuff.

I'm really not worried about "upgrading" CPUs at a later date... the last time I changed CPUs was when a machine blew up a 6700k so I dropped a Celeron on the board.

Buying a new dedicated card that is this year's version of my 560ti's isn't in the cards right now.:oops: An extra ~$100+ on a MB that supports SLI is more stomachable than $250++ on a new GPU.

My goal is cpu, MB, and memory right now. My PSU and case should be fine (SilverStone GD08B with EVGA 650G with 24 pin EATX plug)
What's the point of running 560 TI's on a modern platform when SLI has been dead for years? You'd have a small furnace inside your computer. You'd be better off saving $100 on a motherboard and running one 560 Ti. Or setup up to an RX 6600.

I have a 12100 , care to elaborate about the non gaming recommendation ??

I will also recommend the Core i3 12100F + RX6500XT for light gaming vs 5600G/5700G
Well for non gaming or other heavy usage, video editing/encoding, etc I'm sure that's a fine choice. But OP did mention light gaming. I always bring up BF1 which came out in 2016. Going from a 4 core to a 6 core made quite a noticeable difference for me. That's hardly light gaming, but that was also six years ago. I'm sure there are lighter games out there today that could benefit from a hex core. Not to mention the OP seems to hold onto hardware for a long time. It just seems better to get a 12400f or 5600.
 

Lil'John

Senior member
Dec 28, 2013
261
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81
What's the point of running 560 TI's on a modern platform when SLI has been dead for years? You'd have a small furnace inside your computer. You'd be better off saving $100 on a motherboard and running one 560 Ti. Or setup up to an RX 6600.
How to say you didn't read the OP without saying you didn't read the OP:p

My current baseline system that finally died a month after the OP is a four core with 560 TI's in SLI. My goal is to match that system as cheap as possible. Thus the continued mention of 560 SLI. If SLI is dead, so be it.

Thus, an i3 12100F WILL be sufficient for my goals; four modern cores.

So far, everyone is saying NO current IGP will match the performance of the 560 SLI. So far, the recommendation has been current generation Nvidia mid grade card in the ~$250 range(ie "modern single 560"). I'd rather NOT waste ~$250 for a side grade in terms of performance. The "wasted" power and extra heat is a complete non factor to me.

Well for non gaming or other heavy usage, video editing/encoding, etc I'm sure that's a fine choice. But OP did mention light gaming. I always bring up BF1 which came out in 2016. Going from a 4 core to a 6 core made quite a noticeable difference for me. That's hardly light gaming, but that was also six years ago. I'm sure there are lighter games out there today that could benefit from a hex core. Not to mention the OP seems to hold onto hardware for a long time. It just seems better to get a 12400f or 5600.
My version of light gaming is mostly turn based games as I mentioned: Battletech with Roguetech mod, Shadowrun of various types, Civ 4/5, and similar. The games I mention are doing reasonably well on the i5-4690k with 560 SLI.

I have ZERO interest in FPS games or multiplayer type games.

As for holding onto hardware, I do hold onto hardware until such point as it fails to do what I bought it to do; either in terms of performance or equipment failure. While I do love hardware, I don't buy new hardware just because I'm a gen or two out of date.
 

maddogmcgee

Senior member
Apr 20, 2015
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Everyone is suggesting you spend a little more money for much better performance. That seems very sensible to me, given that you keep your parts for years and the fact that you play 3d games like , Battletech, Civ 5 etc. Civ 5 especially would benefit from faster cores and possible ram in late game. The main game I am playing at the moment is Oxygen Not Included (2d base builder) and even there, a good CPU and set of ram makes a huge difference to late game performance. And no, I am not talking about a desire for 120fps, I am talking about the length of time you can play before fps drop below 15-20. Victoria 3 is coming out soon, and although its far from a graphics intensive game, a nice system will definitely help run it at a decent speed.

With new AMD/Intel cpu's being released over the next few months, you may be able to get a good deal on used items.

If you are dead set on 4 cores (which will impact performance in an increasing number of games) , most motherboards should be ok with that. Buy whatever is on sale, toss out one GPU, done. To be safe, do a quick google of the mobo to make sure the VRM's are not complete piles of garbage.
 

Tech Junky

Golden Member
Jan 27, 2022
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@Lil'John

If you want an IGPU then you need a non-F CPU. F = no iGPU.

There are some significant improvements with the new Iris XE iGPU cores vs the older UHD versions of the past. Now, this is not something you see on the desktop side but on the laptop side at this point since Intel is pushing Alchemist as their dGPU. There's nothing wrong with UHD but, the Iris on the laptop side puts it to shame.

As to the 570TI's mentioned over and over and over again.... I get the wanting to save here and there but, life is much better with current tech compared to 5yo tech.

My suggestion is to build to your needs with current HW and sell off the old stuff to recoup the costs a bit. If you can test which components are still good then that helps make for scavenging parts for sale from the old system. If it's just the MOBO you could potentially just swap that out and sell the complete system to make up a good difference in the cost of putting the new one together.

Civ can be quite demanding as the game continues with more turns and renders as more tile improvements are made.

This is what I would probably put together based on what I've seen here so far.

https://pcpartpicker.com/list/JT4zH2 - ~$750 for a complete system and if you got the other one running again you could probably snag a good sum towards the new setup.

Why buy now when Intel and AMD will be on a new gen of CPUs (and AMD, motherboards) by the end of the month?
Because the current system is dead and OP needs something to replace it. Waiting isn't much benefit at this point with the new release just around the corner but sale not for another month or two of the new gear to drive prices down enough to be that much of a difference.
 
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igor_kavinski

Diamond Member
Jul 27, 2020
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$225 on Amazon. The last two slots are PCIe 16x but limited to 4x PCIe 3.0 bandwidth. The performance loss for 4x operation may not be that great since 560 Ti debuted during the PCIe 2.0 era.
 

DrMrLordX

Lifer
Apr 27, 2000
19,997
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Because the current system is dead and OP needs something to replace it. Waiting isn't much benefit at this point with the new release just around the corner but sale not for another month or two of the new gear to drive prices down enough to be that much of a difference.
Okay that makes sense. Bad timing though.
 
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Tech Junky

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Jan 27, 2022
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Okay that makes sense. Bad timing though.
Timing is relative to need though. If I timed my ADL build for Thanksgiving sales I would have paid more than I did two weeks prior. Pricing is based on demand and with everyone else waiting for rpl prices are dropping to clear inventory even now since the release cycle has been condensing the past few years it has become more irrelevant. waiting as little as 3 months post launch is enough of a discount to make it hurt less on the wallet than waiting until 6 months as it becomes negligible as prices fluctuate on other parts. Sure, you could snipe the best possible prices and save another $20 but not have a working system for 6-12 months waiting for that $20. Meanwhile those parts sitting there also lose value.
 

DrMrLordX

Lifer
Apr 27, 2000
19,997
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Timing is relative to need though. If I timed my ADL build for Thanksgiving sales I would have paid more than I did two weeks prior. Pricing is based on demand and with everyone else waiting for rpl prices are dropping to clear inventory even now since the release cycle has been condensing the past few years it has become more irrelevant. waiting as little as 3 months post launch is enough of a discount to make it hurt less on the wallet than waiting until 6 months as it becomes negligible as prices fluctuate on other parts. Sure, you could snipe the best possible prices and save another $20 but not have a working system for 6-12 months waiting for that $20. Meanwhile those parts sitting there also lose value.
I'm just talking CPU/motherboard. Best time to grab case and PSU is when people aren't building, which is between releases. Sometimes this is also true for RAM. dGPUs, CPUs, and motherboards go down before releases but again afterwards. You talk about $20 but it can be hundreds of dollars. Just look at where dGPU prices are going right now.
 
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Thunder 57

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Aug 19, 2007
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How to say you didn't read the OP without saying you didn't read the OP:p

My current baseline system that finally died a month after the OP is a four core with 560 TI's in SLI. My goal is to match that system as cheap as possible. Thus the continued mention of 560 SLI. If SLI is dead, so be it.

Thus, an i3 12100F WILL be sufficient for my goals; four modern cores.

So far, everyone is saying NO current IGP will match the performance of the 560 SLI. So far, the recommendation has been current generation Nvidia mid grade card in the ~$250 range(ie "modern single 560"). I'd rather NOT waste ~$250 for a side grade in terms of performance. The "wasted" power and extra heat is a complete non factor to me.


My version of light gaming is mostly turn based games as I mentioned: Battletech with Roguetech mod, Shadowrun of various types, Civ 4/5, and similar. The games I mention are doing reasonably well on the i5-4690k with 560 SLI.

I have ZERO interest in FPS games or multiplayer type games.

As for holding onto hardware, I do hold onto hardware until such point as it fails to do what I bought it to do; either in terms of performance or equipment failure. While I do love hardware, I don't buy new hardware just because I'm a gen or two out of date.
There is zero NVIDIA mid range option. The RX 6600 is the only realistic mid range option. NVIDIA is relying on mindshare and are way overpriced on the low to mid range.



The RX 6600 beats the RTX 3050 by a good amount and is close to a RTX 3060. The RTX 3050 is about $50 more on Amazon and the RTX 3060 over $100 more on Amazon. I think you are relying to much on brand loyalty.

And it would hardly be a "side grade". The 560 Ti is so old there is no real comparisons available between it and modern GPU's. Here's the best I can find. I get you don't want to upgrade your GPU, but even if you could get SLI 560 Ti's they would be blown away by something modern. You seem to have already made up your mind though, so why even bother asking for others' opinions?
 
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AtenRa

Lifer
Feb 2, 2009
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Well for non gaming or other heavy usage, video editing/encoding, etc I'm sure that's a fine choice. But OP did mention light gaming. I always bring up BF1 which came out in 2016. Going from a 4 core to a 6 core made quite a noticeable difference for me. That's hardly light gaming, but that was also six years ago. I'm sure there are lighter games out there today that could benefit from a hex core. Not to mention the OP seems to hold onto hardware for a long time. It just seems better to get a 12400f or 5600.
Although I agree that BF1 multiplayer needs more than 4C8T, it is only a single game and I can give you more examples of how good i3 12100 is for gaming using a lot more recent games.
Even in the now famous for high CPU usage Spiderman, the i3 12100 is performing the same or better vs the last gen six core CPUs, so generalizing that 12100 is not for gaming is simple wrong.
Also to mention here that I dont refute that 12400 or 5600/x are better but they almost double the price vs 12100 for a very small performance increase and that only by using a GPU like 3080 and up.
I always recommend people to buy hardware they need now, not in 2-3 years. That said the OP can always upgrade the CPU later on to an i5 or even i7 if he really needs that much more CPU performance in the future.
 

Thunder 57

Golden Member
Aug 19, 2007
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Although I agree that BF1 multiplayer needs more than 4C8T, it is only a single game and I can give you more examples of how good i3 12100 is for gaming using a lot more recent games.
Even in the now famous for high CPU usage Spiderman, the i3 12100 is performing the same or better vs the last gen six core CPUs, so generalizing that 12100 is not for gaming is simple wrong.
Also to mention here that I dont refute that 12400 or 5600/x are better but they almost double the price vs 12100 for a very small performance increase and that only by using a GPU like 3080 and up.
I always recommend people to buy hardware they need now, not in 2-3 years. That said the OP can always upgrade the CPU later on to an i5 or even i7 if he really needs that much more CPU performance in the future.
I would disagree. A 5600 is about $50 more than a 12100, and a 12400 is about $70 more. The part about the 3080 sounds completely wrong. Also, OP said this:

I'm really not worried about "upgrading" CPUs at a later date... the last time I changed CPUs was when a machine blew up a 6700k so I dropped a Celeron on the board.
.

Doesn't sound like a CPU upgrade is in his future.

...Right now, I believe that the Intel i3 12100F(or whatever has IGP) or AMD equiv will do exactly what I need. I don't think I need a 6/12 i5 or similar and thus I'm not going to expand the budget $50 or more to get one.

The MB is where I kind of "fail" since I've normally done Z and premium ones so I'm not 100% on my ability to pick B or H budget style in the $100-$150 range.

The memory to me is a commodity so it will basically be what it is going to be for 16GB.

My case, processor, and drive(s) are all in good shape so I will reuse them.
Wait, so you plan to reuse your CPU? I don't get the question then at all. I think you would be just fine with a 5600G and a B450/B550 motherboard with it. Spend the rest on RAM as it sounds like you will need a lot.
 

AtenRa

Lifer
Feb 2, 2009
13,817
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I would disagree. A 5600 is about $50 more than a 12100, and a 12400 is about $70 more. The part about the 3080 sounds completely wrong. Also, OP said this:
Ok is not double as I was remembering, from newegg Ryzen 5600 is $66 or ~60% more expensive and 12400F is just $53 or ~50% more expensive vs Core i3 12100F

And performance with GTX 3090Ti in Spiderman


1662369848636.png
 

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