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Looking for cheap upgrade options

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by Graogrim, Jan 5, 2008.

  1. JrRacinFan

    JrRacinFan Served 5k and counting ...

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    I'm telling yah man, once overclocked the cache difference between the e4xxx's and e2xxx's is very small you will barely notice a performance hit at all. Also, when paired with a higher end graphics card and gaming above 1280x1024 would no difference at all.

    PS: I remember there was someone on the forums that had stated that the e2xxx's are just crippled and underclocked not a binned allendale.
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  2. Graogrim New Member

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    Well I haven't committed to anything yet. I'm waiting to get paid for the sale of my former graphics card before I make any actual purchases. So I still probably have a couple of days to think about it.
  3. Graogrim New Member

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    Heh. Not really relevant to the topic at hand but I just made an amusing discovery. Somehow I've been running this system ever since I put a new main hard drive in it about four weeks ago with no pagefile.

    You'd think something (like oh, say, Crysis maybe?) would have cried uncle by now.
  4. unsmart

    unsmart New Member

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    The point I think most are trying to make is that a low end C2D with a low end chipset and the slowest ram wont beat your currant system. The real power of the low end C2D is in OCing. My 6300 didn't beat my opty 146@2.98g until it hit about 2.7g. I'm almost sure[ no hard numbers] your P4 will top a C2D at anything below 2.6g. It's a 1.2ghz between the 4500 and your P4, a C2D isn't that much more efficient per clock. With a poor OCing board and the ram already at the lowest setting It's going to be hard to hit the speeds you need to increase performance over your P4.
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  5. Graogrim New Member

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    I've been using the CPU charts over at Tom's Hardware to provide perspective on what to expect, and it generally looks like even in the worst case I'll be a little faster, while in others I could see a 50%+ improvement. I've got a LOT of headroom in my video card. Besides, I've got a friend with an E6600 (2.4GHz) and his system is so much faster it's not even a remotely fair comparison.

    That said, I'll take all the input I can find, so if you have any other benches to link I'll definitely consider them. I'm not exactly a huge overclocker, so if you're right then it might not be worth it for me to bother upgrading at all right now.
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  6. Graogrim New Member

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    Since the jury is still out, let's play "what if."

    If I went with the E2200 instead of its larger cache cousin, and got another gigabyte of DDR2-533, would it then be smart to deliberately run the memory at 400MHz anyway to give it headroom for overclocking the FSB? The implication being that I would still be looking at the same set of motherboards. Or would a different chipset be a better choice for overclocking even if it left less room to grow for clocking the RAM(since starting with underclocked RAM would no longer be an option)?
  7. BullGod

    BullGod New Member

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    Dude 1GB of RAM is something like 20 bucks. Just get a cheap p35 board if you wanna overclock...
  8. Graogrim New Member

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    That's just it. I'm not sure that I want to overclock to a significant degree. I'm big on system stability--to me one crash a month is unacceptable. I chalk it up to a number of years working for "The Man". My last system wasn't going to win any races but it was going on 19 months without a crash or glitch at the time I stopped using it. The system I'm running now hasn't so much as twitched funny since I finished fixing it up as my daily driver back in early December.

    Right now I'm mentally cost/benefitting setting up a high (or at least moderate) OC system. I don't know which way I'm going to go.
  9. Graogrim New Member

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    OK I've been doing some more thinking. I can get away with achieving my original objective for about $164+shipping with the MSI 945P and an E2200, which ain't bad. However I'm still considering alternative approaches.

    I'm absolutely not willing to run with less than 2GB of RAM so if I decide to play with overclocking I'm likely to need at least 1 GB more, which before shipping will place me in the ballpark of $189...still acceptable if I can be reasonably sure of a successful overclock.

    So the question then becomes just how overclockable is the E2x00 series really? Is it hit or miss or pretty consistent? What's the potential to get unlucky with an overclocking dud?

    Doing a little math suggests that if I have RAM capable of functioning at 533 MHz (266 MHz base clock), set the divisor to clock it to match the 200MHz base clock of an 800 MHz FSB CPU such as the E2200, then overclock the whole shebang up to 266 again I'll end up with natively clocked 533 MHz RAM and a CPU overclock from 2.2 GHz up to slightly over 2.9 GHz, with a 1066 MHz FSB. Is this a realistic scenario? Can I expect stability (by which I mean the level of stability to which I am accustomed)? Would it be more realistic to expect overclocking to a lesser degree?

    Edit: Got my prices wrong.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2008
  10. unsmart

    unsmart New Member

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    :eek: Wow was I wrong on the CPUs the P4s sucked big time. Thanks for pointing me to the right info, you really seem to be doing your research:D
    People are getting the Allendales over 3gh on air so with some tweaking 2.9gh should be stable. You can always lower the CPU multiplier and raise your FSB to run your ram at it's rated speed if the CPU can't handle it.
    I did a little figuring and came up with these parts.
    MSI p35 neo you listed $65 [open box]
    E2180 Allendale 2.0GHz $88
    A-DATA 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR2 800 $43 [ $15 rebate]

    total $203 with shipping,the CPU/RAM have free shipping and the MOBO is $6.61. You can get a cheaper 2x1g kits but with the reviews and rebate it seems worth the extra few bucks to me.

    Off topic: I have a 3850 too and just did the pencil Vmod. My cards at 810/1044 right now, I plan on going higher when I get a after market HSF:rockout:
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  11. Graogrim New Member

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    Son of a...

    Why didn't somebody mention this sooner?!? When did Intel make it possible to change CPU multipliers again?!? I thought they were locked for all time. Is this specific to the Allendales or what?

    Anyway yeah AFAIK you can't really do much worse than a P4 right now. Just about anything is an upgrade.

    What kind of temperature does your 3850 run under load at those clocks?
  12. AsRock

    AsRock TPU addict

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    Yes even my system is much better than a P4. Specially in Paintshop and stuff like that and i am talking hours quicker on the tests i ran.

    No one here think he MAY have a PSU issue with this new stuff ?.. Even more so if that PSU is years old as it might not even do 300w any more..
  13. unsmart

    unsmart New Member

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    If you google the e4400[or other C2Ds] you will see people running them at lower multiplier. I do believe it's a chipset/bios trick like MEM dividers on the newer boards not Intel's doings. I'm pretty sure my board lacks this option[never looked for it] as might the MSI p35.
    I'm thinking of getting this board with my tax return.
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130097
    My multi is 7 and the 975x chipset will only do a little over 400FSB and this obard will do over 500. I was thinking of a e2180 but got such a good deal[ $78 on ebay]on my 6300 it's hard to part with.
    My card is mid 70s under load with the fan at 100%. I've only raised voltage to 1.287 for now I think 1.22 was stock. When I get a good cooler I'll try for 1.4 and see if i can hit the high 800s
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2008
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  14. Graogrim New Member

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    I'm not really concerned about my PSU for a couple of reasons. First is that I won't be using this system's PSU, but rather the PSU in the case from my last built system (an Antec Sonata) which is 380W rather than just 350W. Second is that I'm already using pretty much the most wasteful Intel CPU ever (it dissipates 115W). An Allendale processor (which only dissipates 65W) should draw less power, not more. The net effect is that I should have a wider margin of safety for my power supply.
  15. Graogrim New Member

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    OK I did a little checking around and seemed to get confirmation here. Which means if I disable speedstep with an E2200 I should have the choice of multipliers between 6 and 11. Thus unless I miss my guess doing the memory clock 2-step should yield a choice of final CPU overclocks including 2394 MHz, 2660 MHz, and 2926 MHz.

    This is starting to look more attractive.
  16. Graogrim New Member

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    Well, I'm now committed. If all goes well I should be running an E2200 on an MSI motherboard by the end of next week. We'll see how it goes.
  17. unsmart

    unsmart New Member

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    Just got my Internet fixed after a week:mad:
    You should see a big step up over your old system with that config, especially if you go for 2.9gh. When you get it up and running you should post your 3850s 3dmark score here http://forums.techpowerup.com/showthread.php?t=48426 Theres some real nice scores going up with the Vmod. I don't know if your in to the Vmod but heres a link
    http://img205.imageshack.us/my.php?image=hd3870pmodsl4.png it's really easy if you have a DMM I'm at 1.3v now and my cores at 837mh.
    I also decided to upgrade my MOBO to this http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16813130098R
    shoting for 3.4gh hoping for 3.5:laugh:
    Good luck with your new build:toast:
  18. Graogrim New Member

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    Thank ya kindly for all your input. It was a big help in making the decision. :toast:

    I've had the hardware set up and running since Tuesday and I've been gradually ratcheting up the clockspeed. As I type this now my CPU is at 2508 MHz with a slight voltage bump and running confidently. My last 3DMark06 result (the first test of stability and performance gain that I run after each adjustment) was 9379. That is a HAPPY increase over the old P4 550, and it utterly crushes the P4 3.2 Northwood/Geforce 6800 GT I was using only a few months ago.

    What's really struck me through the whole process is how slick and easy it's been to an unprecedented degree. I was worried about stability--I apparently needn't have been as everything has worked perfectly.

    Huzzah. :pimp:
  19. candle_86 New Member

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    have you tried overclocking your cpu, most will do 4 - 4.5 ghz
  20. Graogrim New Member

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    The default clockspeed of an E2200 is 2.2 GHz. :p

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