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Upgrade for Gaming. Even worth considering AMD?

Discussion in 'System Builder's Advice' started by Eric_Cartman, Dec 9, 2012.

  1. Eric_Cartman

    Eric_Cartman

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    My current specs are to the left.

    I saved some money up and have decided to do an upgrade.

    I will be replacing motherboard, CPU, memory, video card, and power supply.

    I'd like to go AMD.

    Here is what I'm thinking for parts.

    AMD FX-8320 3.5GHz (4.0GHz Turbo) - $180

    ASUS M5A99X-Evo - $95

    Patriot Gamer 2 Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 - $40

    eVGA GTX 660 2GB - $200

    Corsair CX600 - $50

    The total for this is $565.

    That is really stretching the budget already.

    I want a board that can do SLI/Crossfire as well, so two PCI-E x16 slots that run at least at x8 with two cards inserted is a must.

    I have about $450 saved up and my parents said they'll give me another $100 as an early x-mas present as long as I use my leftover parts from my current computer to upgrade my little bro's pc.

    My concern is that I've seen discussion here about how the AMD processors are terrible, and how the FX processors struggle to run the latest games.

    I plan to play FarCry3 and Assassins Creed on this, and I'm worried that the FX-8320 won't allow me to play games, which is obviously the primary goal of this upgrade.

    So should I even be considering AMD or should I raise a little more money until I can afford an Intel build?
  2. Dent1

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    Whether you go AMD or Intel is going to have no bearing. Pretty much any modern CPU can run any game. Your decision should be based on your budget, maybe tasks other than gaming.

    Also you should put more emphasis on your GPU.


    On that budget you may be forced to go AMD. Maybe an i3 but I think you'll get less value for money.
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  3. BlackOmega

    BlackOmega

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    The new AMD CPUs' are plenty powerful enough to play any of the current games out there. Hell, even the "old" Phenom II chips were plenty powerful enough. I just sold my 1090T rig that had a 6870 GPU and there weren't many games that I couldn't play absolutely maxed out. The main one was Metro 2033. Everything else you could play either maxed or damn close to it.

    The new AMD series seems to focus mainly on gaming performance actually. Their floating point scores are between that of a 3570k and a 3770k. Which should translate into very good gaming performance. The only real issues I've ever encountered with AMD's is with trying to run 2 high end GPUs'. The older Phenom II line just didn't have enough "horsepower" to deal with all of the info that the GPUs' could dish out. That's where the intel line shines. However, with an i3, you'll still be bottlenecked by the CPU in that regard.
    I can't comment on the new AMD's since I've never had one.

    Unless you have a microcenter nearby, you're pretty much stuck with AMD. MC has some pretty sweet bundle deals that can't be beat. $169.99 for a 3570K and you can get a z77 board for really cheap. Like an AsRock Pro 4 for ~$80.
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  4. Jack1n

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  5. Eric_Cartman

    Eric_Cartman

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    What concerns me about the FX CPU is when I read things like this:

    It seems people talk about how the AMD CPU is already struggling, so what will it do with future games?

    Comments like that really concern me and I see them a lot here.

    Ok, if that is the case what if I went with an FX-6300.

    That would give me $40 more to dump at the GPU.

    That would likely put my in reach of a GTX 660 Ti, would that be a better combo?

    And how does the FX-6300 overclock since it doesn't have an unlocked multiplier?

    The 7850 seems to trail the 660 by about 10%.

    I have the money for the 660 so why go with the 7850.
  6. craigo

    craigo

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    Hello Eric,

    I just warmed over my AMD media center, So I have been looking at AMD stuff lately.
    You could buy the Asrock 970pro3 like I did and still have crossfire support.. big saving for you right there.
    You don't seem to be afraid to overclock so save more by getting the 95w TDP fx6300 and make it sing... Most games can only address 4 cores anyway, Right?...
    remember you need to budget a nice cooler.
    and do something crossfire..
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  7. Caspase

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    The cpu is fine for gaming. The only cases I can think where it would make a difference are:
    1- 120 hz monitor, i5 will have a better timing achieving 120 fps
    2- BF3 multy with 64 players

    +1 for the 7850 btw. And I think you should look into a cpu cooler if you run into trouble, the 8320 is unlocked, and you can compensate the difference towards an i5 with some good old OC

    The 7850 is faster thank gtx 660 in some games, others the exact opposite, but it in an excellent OCer (generally) and is less limited by bandwith than is the gtx 660.
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  8. Ralfies

    Ralfies

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    I would slide the CPU down to an FX-6300 and a decent cooler to overclock the pants off of it, and slide the GPU up to a 7870 GHz edition. The FX-8320's extra cores won't make much(if any) difference in gaming.
    AFAIK the FX-6300 has an unlocked multiplier.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
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  9. BlackOmega

    BlackOmega

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    Are these comments from fanboy's or from actual owners of these chips? A lot of reviews I've read have them very close to the i5's, even beating them occasionally, and on the heels of the i7's, depending on the game of course. I think the new piledriver series is a whole helluva lot better than the Bulldozer line (really they're just improved BD's).
    This really depends on the game. Some games the 7850 beats the 660 and others the 660 beats the 7850. I suppose the main question here is, what resolution are you playing at? It seems the higher the resolution, the closer their performance is. Usually no more difference than 5FPS at 1900x1200. To me, that's a wash really.
    Well there's several reasons.
    1. Price. The cheapest 660 is $220, the cheapest 7850 is $185.
    2. Memory bandwidth. 660 - 192 bit bus, 7850 256 bit bus.
    3. Power consumption. The 660 uses more power than the 7850. (~15% more)
    4. Pixel fill rate is 25% faster than the 660.
    5. 7850 OC very well (usually).

    Quite honestly, I don't think that a measly 5 FPS is worth $35. But once again, this is really dependent on the games that you play. And how much you play said games. If there's a game that you play 80% of the time when you game and the performance is considerably better on the 660, the yes, it's worth it. However, if it's only a <5 FPS difference, it's not.

    If you went with the 7850, you would have an extra $35 to get better CPU/mobo.
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  10. 1nf3rn0x

    1nf3rn0x

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    The fx-8320 is a great chip. Dont let what everybody else says skew your thoughts. In the ens of the day little to no ganes can utilise 8 physical cores. If you look at battlefield 3 the fx8120 keeps up with the 2600 and 3770 as bf3 can utilise all those cores. Sorry for any typos on my phone.
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  11. Radical_Edward

    Radical_Edward

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    AMD is the way to go for gaming on a budget. With my current rig I do anything from gaming to video editing with no problems.
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  12. Dent1

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    But you have to read things into context:

    Is struggling playing every game maxed out. No.

    Is struggling getting a few FPS less than Intel in yes.


    The bottom line is anything from Athlon II X3 / Phenom II X3 can pretty much max out any game today. Games are not as taxing as they used to be.

    I have not come across a single game my Athlon II X4 and 5850CF couldn't play maxed out.




    All of the FX series have unlocked multipliers.

    If you want immediate gaming performance the FX-6300 6 core + GTX 660Ti is the better choice.

    Personally I would go with the FX-8320 8-core + GTX 660 because as enthusiasts we tend to upgrade the GPU more frequently, so it makes more sense to get the fastest CPU as it's the component we tend to keep the longest.

    I also agree with BlackOmega, value for money the 7850 is a better choice than the GTX 660. If dropping to a 7850 allows you to budget an FX-8320 I would do it.

    Also I would shoot for 16GB of ram. It's unnecessary today, but we're seeing games like BF3 exceeding 5GB of physical RAM, it's a given in a few year 8GBs will be the minimum, RAM is so cheap why not prepare now?


    Bear in mind, OP is running a 4 year old E5200. He doesn't upgrade often.

    4 years from now those extra 2-cores will drastically improve gaming.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
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  13. Eric_Cartman

    Eric_Cartman

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    I think I will go with the FX-6300 and the GTX 660 Ti combo.

    I already have a good cooler so overclocking won't be a problem.

    I didn't realize all the FX processors were unlocked.

    For some reason I was thinking only the ones in the black boxes were black editions and unlocked.

    I don't plan to upgrade this really once it is built.

    I just plan to build it and leave it for about 2 years.

    The problem is I'm terrible with money, so it is hard to save enough to do upgrade.

    I'm going to try to go with 16GB of RAM is possible, but I might be stuck with 8GB if the budget allows.

    But that is ok, memory is easy enough to put in and cheap enough that I should be able to upgrade later if I want.

    Plus I might get more money from other relatives at x-mas and be able to add another 8GB then.
  14. Ralfies

    Ralfies

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    That's a good point. I also just noticed his resolution is 1440x900, so it doesn't make much sense to skimp on the CPU to go for a higher end GPU. A 7850 1GB should be plenty, but go for a 7850 2GB or a 660 and the FX-8320. That way if you upgrade your monitor you'll still have enough power and VRAM for 1080p.
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2012
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  15. Jack1n

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    BF3 runs on 2 Threads,back on topic,theres no reason to get 16gb just get a good 8gb kit, i recommend:
    SAMSUNG 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600...
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  16. phanbuey

    phanbuey

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    why don't you price out two builds - one AMD and one intel i5, and see which one is cheaper?

    If the price is only a minor difference ~10% or so, then I would go with intel. Otherwise save the money and pour it into a gfx card.
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  17. Eric_Cartman

    Eric_Cartman

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    Oh yeah, sorry, I forgot to update that part of my system specs.

    That monitor died so I'm using my 1080p HDTV as a monitor now.

    I'm really set on getting at least a 2GB card though.

    IDK, it is either 8320+660 or 6300+660Ti.

    I'm still undecided, but I'm leaning towards the 8320 since could always add a second 660 later.
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  18. Dent1

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    But why the GTX 660? The ATI 7850 is $45 cheaper and performs virtually the same.

    The $45 saved can go towards an additional 8GB of RAM and you'll still have change for a burger.


    PowerColor AX7850 2GBD5-DH Radeon HD 7850 2GB 256-...
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  19. LightningJR

    LightningJR

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    My brother has AC3 and he is using a 6 core phenom II. His framerate is horrid in a place where there's a lot of AI (people). His GPU usage drops to ~%40. The game is heavily dependent on single core performance.

    [​IMG]


    I know the image is old but is is accurate.

    Also read this: http://benchmark3d.com/assassins-creed-3-benchmark

    The AMD chips are NOT as good as Intels (and it's not a fanboy talking, I have had plenty of AMDs before my 2500K because I was on a budget), they can compete with Intel most of the time mainly because a "GAME" don't usually use a CPU enough for it to matter, but when a games comes along that does, it shows..

    But you are on a budget as well so you may not have the choice but to get an AMD because you do want a quad core.

    Oh, he has Far Cry 3 as well and has no issues with it so you're fine with that game.
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  20. Dent1

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    That is some random screenshot from gamegpu.ru which has very little credibility. I actually didn't know the website existed until that random screenshot started floating about.

    I only trust review sites which have traffic.

    If anything all it really shows is Assassins Creed III is badly optimised. When a $500 GTX 680 only gets 41FPS you know the game hasnt been coded right to begin with!

    http://gamegpu.ru/action-/-fps-/-tps/assassins-creed-iii-test-gpu.html
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  21. LightningJR

    LightningJR

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    Yeah you're right, and I agree it hasn't been coded well for PC, none the less, he specifically said he wanted to play Assassins Creed, I can tell you that this graph is accurate when I take in to account my brothers PC since he had the same problems. When you are roaming the forest it's fine but in the city it's bad.

    I thought I would just inform him since I have had first hand experience with it. I couldn't let him go uninformed. If I am wrong show me, and tell me how to fix it, my brother would be grateful.
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2012
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  22. Radical_Edward

    Radical_Edward

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    AC3 runs bad on AMD hardware because AMD didn't give them fat loots like Nvidia did.

    Same reasoning for Borderlands 2 looking better on Nviudia hardware, etc. Game companies are such sellouts these days.
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  23. jgunning

    jgunning

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    I run an amd rig and never had a problem, can run any game i want and havent had any issues at all, because i was in the same boat as you. Needed abit of a budget build. but then slowly improved it as i got $$$ =)
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  24. LightningJR

    LightningJR

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    We were comparing CPUs, so it would be Intel not NVidia. I doubt Intel gave them money, I don't think Intel is worried about games too much. Their architecture is just more efficient, single core performance is much better than AMD which is great for this generation since we get console ports that isn't highly multithreaded if we did AMD wouldn't be in this situation. Add to that a BAD port to the PC and it makes it even worse. :banghead:

    To be honest when the next gen consoles launch and games get coded for more threads (if they do) AMD CPUs may do much better, but we'll see.
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  25. deejeta

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    Honestly amd current gen high end cpus are shit. Too hot and power hungry.
    A10's etc are nice though.
    Go for an intel 3570k in your build mate. Even at stock flogs the pants of a heavily overclocked bulldozer/piledriver chip. I only would use a FX chip for a vm server.
    I hope amd release a decent architecture in the near future. I hate having a one pony show (intel).
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