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What exactly is bottlenecking?

Tags:
  • GPUs
  • Bottleneck
  • Graphics Cards
  • CPUs
  • Graphics
Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 23, 2013 2:38:19 PM

I am looking to upgrade my graphics card to a 7970 or something similar but know for sure my current cpu will bottleneck it (Athlon 750k). I don't have enough money to buy a new GPU, CPU, and motherboard so I was wondering if I could buy the gpu now. It would still give me better performance than my current 7770 would, correct? Could this damage my components? I am just wondering if bottlenecking means your gpu hits a certain limit, or it doesn't function correctly at all. Thanks!

More about : bottlenecking

a b à CPUs
October 23, 2013 2:46:04 PM

Yo should be fine with a 7970, but that is far beyond the point of diminishing return. I would recommend that you get a R9 270X or a R9 280(X) and use the saved money for some other games.
But you might need a new PSU also, what is your current PSU?
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a b à CPUs
October 23, 2013 2:46:06 PM

Yo should be fine with a 7970, but that is far beyond the point of diminishing return. I would recommend that you get a R9 270X or a R9 280(X) and use the saved money for some other games.
But you might need a new PSU also, what is your current PSU?
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a c 209 U Graphics card
a c 207 à CPUs
October 23, 2013 2:47:06 PM

bottlenecking in real life..take a two litter bottle of soda filled with water...turn it over. water can only come out at max rate. the end of the bottle is holding the water from falling out. same thing happens in a pc. the cpu can only handle x amount of data. when that happens the gpu hits a max fps cap. different cpu because of there cores and the gpu uses may or may not bottleneck a game or have issues. most of the issues are with older cpu and two core cpu. on a gaming rig if your gpu does hit the max that your cpu can possesses you see a max fps and that it and your cpu be running at 100 percent.
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October 23, 2013 2:49:45 PM

It will still function just not even close to what it could be doing. Just make sure you have a good enough power supply and you wont hurt it. Get it and start saving for more upgrades though otherwise it will have really been for next to nothing. Performance will increase more or less in some games.
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a b à CPUs
October 23, 2013 2:59:28 PM

Computer components, namely the CPU, GPU, RAM & HDD/SSD have varying capabilities. One will always be slower than the rest. If all those components are from the same technology period there shouldn't be enough of a difference (fastest to slowest) to call it a "bottleneck". People seem to like to use that word as a catch all. Remember one thing. Any time you fix one "bottleneck" you create another.
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a b U Graphics card
a b à CPUs
October 23, 2013 3:56:54 PM

It will work just fine and in the end you can carry it over when you upgrade the rest of your system.

The only thing I would worry about would be if your current PSU can handle the new card. Post your make/model of your current PSU.

Of course at some time you should upgrade your CPU motherboard and ram but the GPU will at least give you a boost until you can do that.
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a c 177 U Graphics card
a c 95 à CPUs
October 23, 2013 7:23:27 PM


radimax are one of the worst psu manufacturers around. it will behave more like a 450w quality psu. I wouldnt bother putting a 750k with a 7970 that is a huge bottleneck. a 7870 if you want to play at 1080p is probably the most powerful card you would want to put in that system, and even that would benefit greatly from a more powerful cpu.
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October 23, 2013 10:40:50 PM

iam2thecrowe said:

radimax are one of the worst psu manufacturers around. it will behave more like a 450w quality psu. I wouldnt bother putting a 750k with a 7970 that is a huge bottleneck. a 7870 if you want to play at 1080p is probably the most powerful card you would want to put in that system, and even that would benefit greatly from a more powerful cpu.

Yea but I'm going to be getting a new cpu (hopefully a 9370) and motherboard but don't have the money to buy all of them right now. I just want to get the graphics card now, assuming it would still be a huge upgrade over my 7770, then after I save up buy the rest.
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October 25, 2013 10:46:44 AM

trchamp12 said:
I am looking to upgrade my graphics card to a 7970 or something similar but know for sure my current cpu will bottleneck it (Athlon 750k). I don't have enough money to buy a new GPU, CPU, and motherboard so I was wondering if I could buy the gpu now. It would still give me better performance than my current 7770 would, correct? Could this damage my components? I am just wondering if bottle necking means your gpu hits a certain limit, or it doesn't function correctly at all. Thanks!


Everything has to get done at the same time. so imagine that your pc is drawing a painting. and its doing it with 2 robotic arms. One arm is your CPU and the other is your GPU. So off they go to paint the picture. when it begins to paint you assign each arm a part of the painting. The more detail you want the more the graphics card arm has to paint. and the more objects there are the more the CPU arm has to paint. if one arm is faster than the other and it gets done. it just takes a break and lets the other finish.

This is bottle necking when one arm has nothing to do all it can do is just sit around and wait. and when that happens things slow down because you cant paint as many pictures "frames" because your just waiting around. when both are working together in more or less for the same amount of time your being "optimal" and you can paint allot more pictures. so you get a "higher frame rate".

The good news is that you have some control over this you can change your settings to help compensate. for example if you CPU is good but your GPU isn't good. you can turn up all the physics and turn up the view distance because that's all (amount of stuff moving about on screen) but turn your GPU detail setting down so it doesn't have to paint the details so long. and then you get allot of frames. or alternatively do the opposite if you have a great GPU and a lame CPU you can turn the details all the way up. and lower how many things you have on your screen so you have fewer more detailed objects. and you will get allot of frames.
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