Basically, I was planning on updating my computer with an Asus GTX 660. I made another post which confirmed that it would be compatible with my mobo with a small performance deficit.
Here's my issue now: People are telling me that if I use the GTX 660 with my current, terrible rig, it's going to bottleneck the living hell out of it.
4 gigs of Ram
MSI MS-7309 2.0 PCI mobo
AMD Phenom(tm) 9550 Quad-Core Processor
NVIDIA GeForce 9500 GT
300 watt power supply (I know I'll have to upgrade it)
If I simply upgrade my psu then add the Asus GTX 660, will it bottleneck performance significantly because of my CPU or will I be ok? If so, what would a better alternative be for playing BF3 on settings that are at least moderately good? Currently, I can't stand playing BF3 on terrible resolution on all low settings.
The question is if the GTX 660 will be an improvement in performance, and the answer is a resounding "yes". Your other components could be improved and your performance would gain, but compared to a 9500GT, things will get much better. The GTX 660 is not a high-end card, and I would never recommend anything less than a GTX 650 Ti Boost anyway. So you don't really have many other options.
To what extent? Are there any other cards that would work better and actually run BF3 decently? And if not what will I need to upgrade?
the problem is BF3 is most certainly a CPU hog. It will beat on the cpu to the exclusion of the gpu, and with an old cpu i can't say you'll see much improvement because of how poorly coded it is (frankly, it's doubtful you could play BF3 even with that gpu, because the cpu is so out of step).
get yourself a PhII x4 965be, or an Athlon II x4 750, and match it with a solid gpu... you'll be able to play bf3.
So say I got the Phenom II x4 965, would I be able to run BF3 any better right away? Or will I have to wait for the graphics card as well?
And thanks for all the feedback guys, it's really appreciated.
Currently I can play BF3 on ultra-low settings at around 20-25 fps, depending on the map.
I simply want to be able to at least pull off medium-high settings with 40-50 fps. (Or something that's not painfully unbearable like it is now)