Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question
Solved

Q9400 vs. Q9550

Tags:
  • Windows 7
  • Quad Core
  • CPUs
  • Motherboards
Last response: in CPUs
Share
a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 3:25:27 PM

Here's my situation. I have a old 775 socket motherboard that is tied to a copy of windows 7 (OEM). I also have DDR2 RAM which would need to be replaced adding to the cost of an upgrade to a newer architecture such as ivy or haswell. I would estimate the cost of an upgrade to ivy at around $300-$350 (motherboard, cpu, RAM, windows 7). Getting an ivy would also be a waste because my gpu is only a HD 7750. However I game at low resolutions so cpu bottlenecks still overcome the HD 7750 bottleneck occasionally.

Taking all of this into account, I have decided that, instead of moving up a few generations, perhaps I could lengthen the life of this build by equipping it with the best the LGA socket has to offer. I currently have an e8400 which does excellent in most games except for quad games like BC2, BF3, GTAIV, Natural Selection 2, MMOs etc.

So I am looking at two CPUs, the Q9400 and the Q9550. I can find the Q9400 for around $80 and the Q9550 for around $110-$130. My question is mutil-faceted. Is this a sensible upgrade? Will I see improvments in multi threaded games? Which CPU is more cost effective? Should I consider a different Core 2 Quad?

Thanks for reading this and I welcome any input. :D 

More about : q9400 q9550

a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 3:51:47 PM

Well, despite the $30 dollar difference, I would go for the Q9550 as it shows an approx. 10% performance difference which in the long run will come in handy where as what's $30 in the long run really?
But really what you really want to be considering is a new MoBo that supports 3rd gen i3+ or maybe even 4th?
because its going to give your computer a larger life span where as upgrading to a Q9550 still restricts how long your computer really lasts, and you could then always upgrade your GPU later,
Then again
its all about how much you game and what games, if you want to stick to Core 2, then Q9550 is worth the extra $30 imo, but also weigh up your pros and cons on upgrading completely

Hope I helped :) 

EDIT: You definitely 100% need some DDR3
m
0
l
a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 4:10:42 PM

NathanRx said:
Well, despite the $30 dollar difference, I would go for the Q9550 as it shows an approx. 10% performance difference which in the long run will come in handy where as what's $30 in the long run really?
But really what you really want to be considering is a new MoBo that supports 3rd gen i3+ or maybe even 4th?
because its going to give your computer a larger life span where as upgrading to a Q9550 still restricts how long your computer really lasts, and you could then always upgrade your GPU later,
Then again
its all about how much you game and what games, if you want to stick to Core 2, then Q9550 is worth the extra $30 imo, but also weigh up your pros and cons on upgrading completely

Hope I helped :) 

EDIT: You definitely 100% need some DDR3


Obviously DDR3 would be nice if my MB supported it, however I read that DDR2 800mhz with low timings is actually comparable to DDR3 1333mhz. Is there any hard evidence of a DDR2 bottleneck?
m
0
l
Related resources
a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 4:26:53 PM

Well it would be dependable on the rest of your hardware as well because DDR2 uses more power resources than 3, but it was a similar story with DDR and DDR2 when it was released, but actually if you were to look at the timings of some of the DDR2 and DDR3 you'll see the clock speeds will both differ and that in its self is evidence that the DDR3 will perform better, because maybe the DDR2 with the correct timings/clock speed could match low-quality DDR3 but in the end, there is always going to be DDR3 with more effective timings and higher clock speeds. - To give an example a DDR2 800Mhz with timings of 4-4-4-12 could theoretically run faster than 1333Mhz with 9-9-9-24 ( I think, :S) but then there is always going to be DDR3 with 3-3-3-8...confusing, I know!

but if your MoBo doesn't support it, I can see how it could be a pricey move for something as small as it is
m
0
l
a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 5:17:31 PM

NathanRx said:
Well it would be dependable on the rest of your hardware as well because DDR2 uses more power resources than 3, but it was a similar story with DDR and DDR2 when it was released, but actually if you were to look at the timings of some of the DDR2 and DDR3 you'll see the clock speeds will both differ and that in its self is evidence that the DDR3 will perform better, because maybe the DDR2 with the correct timings/clock speed could match low-quality DDR3 but in the end, there is always going to be DDR3 with more effective timings and higher clock speeds. - To give an example a DDR2 800Mhz with timings of 4-4-4-12 could theoretically run faster than 1333Mhz with 9-9-9-24 ( I think, :S) but then there is always going to be DDR3 with 3-3-3-8...confusing, I know!

but if your MoBo doesn't support it, I can see how it could be a pricey move for something as small as it is


Yeah your explanation was more or less my understanding of it. Something that would be really helpful would be some benchmarks comparing the Core 2 Quads against each other, preferably in a gaming scenario and not a synthetic benchmark. I do thank you for your input so far though :) 
m
0
l

Best solution

a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 5:47:22 PM

I usually use these types of benchmarks, not solid definitive results but their passmark software that they test them with uses a Dx9/11 test to benchmark its gaming capabilities so these could be used as a reference
Q9400 - http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core2+Qua...
Q9550 - http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=Intel+Core2+Qua... (I was surprised at the benchmark for this, significantly higher than expected)

Gaming wise
I took a look at the 3dMark test results which test its gaming capabilities, and because I couldn't find your GPU/CPU combination for both CPU's I found both test results (with the same GPU) so you can see the difference -
The Q9400 achieved 6421
The Q9550 achieved 9159 (I used the lowest score for this test, but the results did go up to 10299

So there you have it, anything else you need, just keep 'em coming
Share
a b à CPUs
September 8, 2013 6:48:05 PM

Thanks man. I think I'll go for a Q9550 for now and plan on a LGA 1150 upgrade in the future.
m
0
l
!