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Upgrade from i7-920 to 3770k or Crossfire 7970?

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March 11, 2013 10:01:58 AM

I currently have my i7 920 and thinking of selling it together with my mobo, ram and upgrading it to an i7-3770k, mobo and ram. I can probably sell it for about $300, which the i7 3770k costs $230 in Microcenter. Or should I wait for Haswell to come out, June perhaps?

I also have about $400 to spare other than what I would get from selling my current i7 920. Should I go crossfire it first?

Is there a big difference going from i7 920 to i7 3770k? about 90% gaming and 10% AutoCAD rendering for my girlfriend.
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March 11, 2013 10:06:23 AM

You would see a much bigger improvement in gaming adding a 7970, assuming you have a high res monitor. What resolution do you have? If it is 1920x1080 you are good all the way around already.
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March 11, 2013 10:15:22 AM

im in a very similar place as you. i have i7 950 and a single 7970. what ive decided to do is wait for haswell. it may not be amazingly better than ivy bridge but at least it should be better. need benchmarks to know if its really worth waiting.

but most importantly it will support virtu mvp which our current motherboards dont. if you dont know about it look for a full review of it. id rather have virtu mvp than a second card. its not gonna give the performance of a second card but will make games much smoother and responsive. that i feel is better than just jacking up the framerate.

ive never been a huge fan of dual card setups. its not worth spending twice as much for 10-85% more performance, depending on game.

from what ive seen haswell will do things like autocad much better than ivy or sandy bridge. i think you should wait for it.
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March 11, 2013 10:24:03 AM

I'll look onto the virtu mvp. Thanks.
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March 11, 2013 10:25:57 AM

First Gen I7 is not at all bad by today's std so waiting for Haswell would make sense. Here is a CPU comparison http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/551?vs=47 most of the difference can be explained on clock speed.
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March 11, 2013 10:27:55 AM

If you are 90% gaming, then the answer is definitely Crossfire 7970s. It'll at the very least last longer than the 8000-series. Is your CPU actually holding you back? Have you overclocked the CPU? Some people aren't interested in overclocking which is fine, but if you are comfortable with it then an OCed 920 will be loads better than a stock 2.66ghz. They are excellent chips for OCing particularly the D0 stepping. A 3.5ghz 920 shouldn't have trouble with crossfired 7970s in games.
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March 11, 2013 10:31:35 AM

larkspur said:
If you are 90% gaming, then the answer is definitely Crossfire 7970s. It'll at the very least last longer than the 8000-series. Is your CPU actually holding you back? Have you overclocked the CPU? Some people aren't interested in overclocking which is fine, but if you are comfortable with it then an OCed 920 will be loads better than a stock 2.66ghz. They are excellent chips for OCing particularly the D0 stepping. A 3.5ghz 920 shouldn't have trouble with crossfired 7970s in games.

I actually oc'ed it to about 3.8ghz but went with just normal speed because I just thought I do get decent frames with just the normal speeds. Will i experience bottleneck if I won't overclock it?
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March 11, 2013 10:34:37 AM

Why wouldn't you overclock it? It might be fine, you'll find out when you try it. I'd definitely go with crossfire, BTW.
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March 11, 2013 10:36:12 AM

FinneousPJ said:
Why wouldn't you overclock it? It might be fine, you'll find out when you try it. I'd definitely go with crossfire, BTW.


I'll go for crossfire then. I stop ocing it cause of power consumption with just having unnoticeable frame rate gains.
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March 11, 2013 10:39:27 AM

Well, try OCing again with the crossfire config and see if the gains are worth it to you ;) 
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March 11, 2013 10:41:37 AM

mikedp5 said:
I actually oc'ed it to about 3.8ghz but went with just normal speed because I just thought I do get decent frames with just the normal speeds. Will i experience bottleneck if I won't overclock it?

You'll have to see exactly where, but if you already know how to OC it, then if you do notice some slowdown in intensive games, just OC a bit. I'm guessing you won't see much difference over 3.0 or 3.2 ghz in current games when Crossfired, and look at all the headroom you have. Plus X58 has plenty of PCIe lanes. I'd definitely say that changing your mobo and cpu (and probably OS too) right now won't really give you much performance boost particularly in games. More GPU-muscle will definitely make a difference although crossfire has its issues. As far as AutoCAD goes, the OC should make a noticeable difference.
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