I've been researching new upgrade options from my 920 which has been a workhorse. I have it OCd to 4Ghz and a GTX 680 4GB. I have to build a new computer for my wife so I thought I would convert my old one and look for something new. I do gaming like BF3 and BF4 when it comes out and would like to stay ahead of the curve.
What is the next step in terms of CPU that would be a big difference from what I have now? Budget is about $500 for chip and mobo but that's flexible.
Any MOBO recommendations to go with it? If it matters, the cooler the better. . .my rig is a space heater even with H100 water cooling.
My current specs are below.
Thanks in advance!
CPU: Intel I7 920 OC'd to 4.0 Ghz
M/B: MSI X58 Pro-E Motherboard
RAM: 6 GB Patriot DDR 3 PC3-12800 1600mhz
FAN: Corsair H100 Liquid Cooler
HDD: Crucial 120 GB SSD and 2 Segate SATAII 500 gig hd
VGA: EVGA GTX 680 4GB
Sound: SB xfi
SU : Thermaltake Toughpower 700W W0106RU
Case : Cooler Master HAF 922 Full Tower Tower
DVD-RW : Lite On LH020A1l SATA Sony DRU 720A
Monitor : Samsung 27" 120hz
OS: Win 7 64
Here is something to consider:
Haswell 4770K OC'd to 4.2ghz is about 40% faster all around then i7-920 Bloomfield @ 4ghz.
Haswell 4670K OC'd to 4.2 ghz is about 5~40% faster depending on type of workload.
With $500 budget, you may only be able to get 4670K. For this price, it may or may not be easy for you to pick up 4770K with good mobo, depending on where you live. Personally, I would hold off on the upgrade, unless I want to save power consumption. If you mostly game, an upgrade to 4670K may be worth is, since most games are still optimized for quadcore. If you mostly do video encoding, etc, 4770K would be a better choice. If you use it for general tasks (email, movies, internet, etc) most of the time, you may be better off saving for the next generation i7 for another year.
4770k and a decent board for $500 isn't impossible at all. Any of the recommended boards from the review I linked and a 4770k will be just under $500. A board doesn't have to be $200+ to be a good board.