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Upgrade advice for my Gaming rig - How can I balance this system out?

Discussion in 'System Builder's Advice' started by marcelteaching, Jan 17, 2011.

  1. marcelteaching New Member

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    Hi, over the years I have gathered some nice components, and have just acquired a new XFX Ati 6870 GDDR5 1GB Card - I guess I am wondering what I need to most invest in to make her fly properly.

    Any advice would be very much appreciated! :) I don't know jack about overclocking, so everything below is running at factory standard specs.

    My Current Bits

    Windows: Windows 7 Professional 64 bit
    Memory (RAM): 2047 MB
    CPU Info: Intel® Core™2 Quad CPU Q6600 @ 2.40GHz
    CPU Speed: 2395.5 MHz
    Motherboard: Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd. EP45-DS3
    Motherboard: EP45-DS3
    Case : Lian Li Silent case (very nice!)
    Sound Card: Auzen X-Fi Audio Prelude 7.1
    Display Adapters: XFX ATI Radeon 6870 1GB GDDR5
    Monitors: 2x Acer X243HQ 24" LCD Screens (can go to 3, by adding another identical one for about 150)
    Screen Resolution: 1920 X 1080 - 32 bit
    CD / DVD Drives: Optiarc DVD RW AD-7200S
    Mouse: Logitech G5
    Keyboard : Logitech G15
    Hard Disks: C: 931.5GB | D: 298.1GB
    Hard Disks - Free: C: 543.0GB | D: 84.0GB
    Joystick : Logitech X3D Extreme 3DPro

    Obviously, I need to do something - What can I do that will balance it out right? I have not mentioned my budget, but I can't afford the i7's, and I don't want things that will add only minor performance for high cost.

    What do you think?
    My main uses are FSX, General Gaming and I run two screens (maybe going to 3) from the Video Card.. I am choosing the parts from MSY - http://www.msy.com.au/Parts/PARTS.pdf

    Thanks guys!
  2. m3lisk

    m3lisk New Member

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    Well, i run that resolution, and i can tell you that just running my desktop takes up about a gig of ram, so i think the best thing would be to increase your ram. :toast:
  3. mrg666 New Member

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    I agree with the previous post, increasing your RAM to 4GB is the best first upgrade.

    Second step, I know you said you didn't know how but, overclock that Q6600 to 3GHz. You have a capable motherboard; just increase the FSB to 333 and see what happens. If you have instability you can increase the CPU voltage just a little. 3GHz is easily reachable with most Q6600s without increasing the voltage and using the default heatsink. Or you can buy a Q9550 from Ebay. My Q9550 is running at 4GHz 24/7.
  4. entropy13

    entropy13

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    I'm wondering about your RAM though if it's just 1 stick of 2GB or 2 sticks of 1GB.
  5. [Ion]

    [Ion] WCG Team Assistant

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    I agree with everyone else, upgrade the memory to 4GB.

    Then get a CPU cooler (such as the Xigmatek HDT-S1283, OCZ Vendetta 2, or similar) and OC that C2Q to ~3ghz
    Crunching for Team TPU
  6. wolf

    wolf Performance Enthusiast

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    again a big agree with the first few posts.

    boost the ram to 4gb, but be sure you can still run dual channel. ie if you have two 1gb sticks, get two more. if you have one 2gb stick, get one more.

    also your CPU should have no issue getting to 3-3.2ghz, do that and get to 4gb ram and the balance of the force will be restored.
    marcelteaching says thanks.
  7. marcelteaching New Member

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    Thanks guys!

    What do you think about the viability of switching to an i5-760 and a new board? A Q9550 looks to be had for about $250, while an i5-760 I can buy for about $208, and a new board can be done I guess... Does anyone know what these i5-2500 processors are like in comparisonm, because they can now be had fir about the same price too.

    Another alternative I am thinking about is a Phenom II X6 1055ST with a Gigabyte 890FXA-UD5 Mobo..

    Is a Q9550 a better idea?
  8. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I really think that you will get a more noticable difference getting 4gb's of good ram for your current system. Start with that. For 'gaming' you won't notice much difference upgrading your other components.
    marcelteaching says thanks.
  9. marcelteaching New Member

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    Thanks, I agree a RAM upgrade is compulsory (I don't mind going for 6/8/12 GB if it makes a difference?) and I am trying to decide if a CPU/Mobo upgrade is going to see much of a performance boost.
  10. Smety

    Smety New Member

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    I hate to be repetitive, but like everyone explained: just get another 2GB of RAM for now and use that system for another year or two. Then when that system is completely cached just rebuild the whole thing :)
  11. marcelteaching New Member

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    Overclocking?

    :confused: I am a little unc... no.. COMPLETELY uncertain of how to do it. I am a bit scared of frying my chip lol, or damaging my PC due to inexperience, is there a sensible quide on how to overclock a Q6600 with my Mobo anywhere?
  12. erocker

    erocker Super Moderator Staff Member

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  13. Crap Daddy

    Crap Daddy

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    Sadly the socket 775 times are over. I am in the same boat. Upgrade means a completely new system. That means money. Depending on what you do with your PC upgrading can be delayed, but if you love this stuff sooner or later it's inevitable. I think Sandy Bridge is a wonderful opportunity to do this. i5-2500 offers incredible performance for someone who is not into overclocking at a very affordable price. Forget the i5-760. For what you have I also say more memory and mandatory overclocking, otherwise if you don't want to do that the only way is socket 1155.
    marcelteaching says thanks.
  14. marcelteaching New Member

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    Thanks, then a i5-2500 for $229 is on the menu (Locked in! :)), and that means a 1155 motherboard is essential. I forgot to add that I have bought a OSZ SSD 80GB Drive to boot from, and run some essential programs that I need fast... :) I will also be getting a Samsung 2TB Drive for storage.

    As far as motherboards go, I can choose from :

    G-B H67MA-D2H / Asus P8H67-M 111 / 135
    MSI P67A-C43 / Asus P8P67-M / G-B P67A-UD3R 141/159/169
    MSI P67A-C45 /G-B P67A-UD3P /Asus P8P67 157/187/199
    G-B P67A-UD4 / Asus P8P67-Pro 207 / 225
    Asus P8P67-EVO / Asus P8P67-Deluxe 255 / 309

    Given my configuration and needs, and prior experience with GB boards (As in, the time I have used it as opposed to knowing anything about it lol) I quite like the idea of the G-B P67A-UD3P, which seems a natural next step?

    Is that about right?
  15. PopcornMachine

    PopcornMachine

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    It may be the assumption here, but I would suggest making sure you get a I5 2500K. That is the unlocked version and allows very good overclocking.
    marcelteaching says thanks.
  16. MxPhenom 216

    MxPhenom 216 Corsair Fanboy

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    upgrade to Sandy Bridge??
  17. mrg666 New Member

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    The OP seems to have changed his/her mind about upgrading the Socket 775 system. Then, Crap Daddy has a good advice; socket 1155 and Sandy Bridge are the best options.
  18. marcelteaching New Member

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    What good is good advice if you don't follow it, lol?

    :) Here's my shopping list. I've upgraded the board a touch. Thanks for everyone for your good advice!


    Component Specific From Price
    Board GB P67A-UD4 MSY 207
    CPU Intel i5-2500 MSY 229
    Cooler FRIO MSY 119
    Assemble MSY 70
    RAM Kingston 2000 Kingston T1 MSY 106

    TOTAL 731
  19. wolf

    wolf Performance Enthusiast

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    70$ for assembly? are you game to do that yourself?

    where in Aus are you anyway, I recognise a copy/paste of the MSY price list anyday.

    also I just bought a FRIO cooler and it was 49 Euro ($70 AUD), you should be able to get it, or even a comparable or better cooler for less than $119 AUD. 50-80$ cooler will see you over 4ghz overclocknig wise.
  20. marcelteaching New Member

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    All bought now ... :)

    All done, they did not have the Samsung Spinpoint anywhere due to the HDD shortage, but I managed to get a 2GB WD. The FRIO cooler was also out of stock, so I switched to a Noctua NH-C12P SE14 cooling..

    I'm pretty happy, and I am going to give assembling it a go myself. I live in Southside of Brisbane. :)

    Marcel
  21. [Ion]

    [Ion] WCG Team Assistant

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    If you haven't already ordered, get the i5 2500k. It has an unlocked multiplier and will overclock spectacularly
    Crunching for Team TPU
  22. MxPhenom 216

    MxPhenom 216 Corsair Fanboy

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    nice man. except idk why you got an after market cooler if your not going to be overclock on the 2500
  23. marcelteaching New Member

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    Well.. :) I might give it a try in a few months when my confidence is up, plus, lower temps extend the life of the processors and it helps cool the components around it too. :)
  24. Rado D

    Rado D New Member

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    You see boy,you are learning fast - you got a good point there :) even that what I've read from reviews is that the new generation of Intel CPUs are finally capable of running with good temps on their own,stock cooler.You still cant go wrong with a more decent aftermarket cooler..and dont forget,If your cpu is not OEM,but retail,therefore will come with stock cooler,You have two option:
    1.keep it as backup
    2.since its not as useless as the last generation i5 i7 CPUs stock coolers,you can bet you will be able to make some money back in form of trading the stock cooler as there is always someone interested :)

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