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Conroe or A64 3700+?

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March 15, 2007 11:13:28 AM

Hey
I'm buying a new (used) PC, and I start to wonder what's best..

System 1: Miditower; Athlon 64 3700+, DFI Lanparty S939 Nforce4, 2GB pc3200 RAM, ATI Radeon X1900XT 512mb, 500Watt PSU and a 10K RPM Raptor.

System 2: SHUTTLE; Conroe C2D E6600, 975X express chipset, 2GB Gskill pc 6400 RAM, Geforce 7950GT 512mb, Seagate 250GB SATA2 HDD, 400W Shuttle PSU.

System 1 costs APP 500-545$.

System 2costs APP 900-1000$.

I've seen some CPU and VGA charts on this site, and I think that if the E6600 can pull 180FPS, but the 7950GT can only pull 75FPS on highest settings...

Then wouldn't it be better with a 3700+ that pulls 88FPS, and a x1900XT that pulls 85FPS?

Or what..

Because I'm certainly not gonna pay more money, for a system that performs worse.

Hope you can help.

Your beloved Mads :wink:

More about : conroe a64 3700

March 15, 2007 11:22:19 AM

The second system is better in every way EXCEPT the video card. Most games will perform better with the X1900XT than the 7950GT. Having said that, the graphics card is the most important component in a gaming machine, but the second system gives you so much more of everything else. So get something like the second one, but get a different video card with it.
March 15, 2007 11:37:01 AM

Quote:
The second system is better in every way EXCEPT the video card. Most games will perform better with the X1900XT than the 7950GT. Having said that, the graphics card is the most important component in a gaming machine, but the second system gives you so much more of everything else. So get something like the second one, but get a different video card with it.
Yeah...there's no upgrade path with #1. With #2, you can get a few years out of it. See if you can get a better video card in #2...GL :)  Actually, the 7950 isn't a bad card.
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March 15, 2007 12:13:17 PM

Erk.

That's a toughie.

System 1 is out of date but has better kit - the Radeon is better than the Geforce, and the Raptor is better than the seagate. And has a better case, and a better PSU.

System 2 is bang up-to-date, but has worse kit.

Neither are really expandable...

I'm going to say "go for the first system, and put the extra cash towards upgrading it" - if you eBay the '64, the board and the RAM you should be able to get enough cash to grab at least an E4300, a board and a couple of gigs of RAM, even if they aren't as "good" as the other components. Reuse the midi-tower, the PSU, the Radeon and the Raptor and you're golden.
March 15, 2007 12:26:13 PM

That's a tough call considering how much cheaper the A64 system is. But I'd say go with the Conroe. It's a pretty solid system now and you can replace the graphics card in the summer when all the new DX10 parts (hopefully) arrive.

I disagree with the idea of buying the A64 only to Ebay most of it.

The A64 can't really be upgraded, and Raptors are hugely overrated anyway.

So yeah, I'd say get the Conroe system. The case and PSU leave some to be desired, and you'll eventually want to upgrade the graphics card, but overall it's pretty good.
March 15, 2007 12:43:24 PM

I'm assuming it's one or the other, he can't get the second system with an e6400 instead of the e6600. He's getting one of two already existing machines, not assembling his own. If he was assembling his own then there's a lot of things he should switch before the CPU, namely the board case and PSU.
March 15, 2007 12:44:42 PM

>upgrade the graphics card

With a shuttle PSU?


For the extra $355-$500, surely you can buy a C2D E4300, 2Gb of RAM and a decent motherboard? I dunno, I'm in the UK. I'd've thought with $500 it should easily be possible...
March 15, 2007 12:45:22 PM

This is actually a pretty tough decision because each system offers it's own advantages/disadvantages.

Advantages

System #1 - better video card, killer hard disk drive, maybe better PSU, cost

System #2 - superior dual- core CPU & mobo and modern DDR2 ram

Disadvantage

System #1 - old socket 939, single core CPU, DDR1 memory

System #2 - terrible PSU, hard drive could be better, cost

My question to you is why don't you build your own computer? If you were to buy one of these systems would you overclock?

And by being "used", I wouldn't pay more than $450 for system #1 and $900 for system #2.

I just built a new system for $800 after MIR (though I already had WinXP so I save around $120) and it is better than either system (when I oc my e6400).

But to choose a system. Here's my opinion.

With system #1, you will have to replace the mobo ($100-$250), ram (~$200), chip (~$200) and get another hard drive (~$90). That Raptor might be fast but it's probably only 74GB. You will need more.

Add this to your initial cost of say $500, and your final cost will be around ($1100-$1300).

With system #2, all you have to do is buy a better PSU (~$100-$150) and a better video card (~200) to get an awesome system down the road.

Add this to the cost and your final cost will be around $1200-$1300.

So, in the end you will end up spending about the same in cost. But I would choose system #2 overall because you won't have to do a complete reinstall of Windows and when you do upgrade your video card, it will be far superior to the X1900XT.
March 15, 2007 12:47:34 PM

Steering clear of the AMD verse Intel question, I've worked on a few Shuttles and except for there small size, I wouldn't touch one with a ten foot pole. Motherboards are specially built and so is the power supply. Also no room for updates or add ons. 8O
If something fails it will cost more to repair.

I admit it's a personal opinion, but I don't like them. I,ve had several in with overheating problems, and If you do get one, pull it apart and put some thermal paste on the CPU. The few I've worked on haven't had any.

The cooling fans on the heat sinks are very narrow, causing dirt to build up very quickly.
8O
March 15, 2007 12:52:48 PM

Quote:
>upgrade the graphics card

With a shuttle PSU?


For the extra $355-$500, surely you can buy a C2D E4300, 2Gb of RAM and a decent motherboard? I dunno, I'm in the UK. I'd've thought with $500 it should easily be possible...


Good point. But then he's probably better off just building from scratch. If he's going to be replacing the motherboard, he may as well just skip either build and get something like

965P DS3
2gb RAM
ATX case and PSU
320gb HD
e6300/e6400

for about $700, give for take twentyish if he wants the 6400 or 6300, depending on overclocking. Then get the 7900GS or 8800GTS 320mb, total in the ballpark of $1000, or $850 if he goes with the 7900GS. Better value than buying and upgrading either system, I'd say.
March 15, 2007 12:55:34 PM

Initial Cost: 500

Add C2D E4300 for $169;

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Add 2Gb GSkill DDR2-800 for $169;

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...

Add a Gigabyte GA965P-DS3 for $122;

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Add a 250gb Hard Drive for $75

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...

Total is 500+169+169+122+75 == $1035



Buy the C2D system for $900

Add a 74Gb Raptor for $140
Add a new case for, I dunno, $50?
Add a new PSU for, say, $30 - probably want a better one, but lets keep the cost as low as possible.
Add a Radeon 1900XT - say $200.

Total is 900+140+50+30+200 == $1320


I'm thinking the cost-effective choice is the first one. Even if you're only going to get the second one up to the specs of the first one (with an inferior graphics card...) you'll be spending $1040 for the base unit plus the Raptor, and if you want to upgrade you'll need to go for a new case and a new PSU at the same time...
March 15, 2007 12:56:26 PM

Actually, yeah. He's much better off building from scratch than buying either of those two systems!
March 15, 2007 1:02:55 PM

I concur. 8)
March 15, 2007 1:15:44 PM

Adding the raptor to system #2 does make the cost go up dramatically to get "an equivalent" system.

But when the OP would spend $200 for a video card, he would not be getting the X1900XT. He would probably be getting a $200 DX10 ATI or Nvidia card which would blow the pants off of the X1900XT.

Plus, the E6600 is a much better chip than the E4300. More cache and it oc's better, if the OP is into that. If the OP is not planning on oc'ing, then you have to add the cost of an E6600 to system #1 would increases it by another $150 or so.

The other question would be would the OP get the original XP disks? If not, the OP won't be able to install a new mobo which would warrant system #2 to be picked.

But in the end, I agree that the best thing to is for the OP to build a new system.
March 15, 2007 1:29:27 PM

Basically, it all comes down to whether or not he's willing to build a new system. If he is, then that's the best plan.
March 15, 2007 1:33:01 PM

Oh, and if the poster doesn't want to build his own system, I'd change my mind and say get system 1 and replace the CPU with an X2 or Opteron. The Opteron 165 is only $150ish I think and overclocks like a demon. I didn't think that the 975x was a Shuttle board, thanks for the eye opener marty.

System 1 has a lot of aging but good parts for an incredible price... once the CPU is replaced it'd be around $700 at most, which isn't much worse value than building a new one from scratch. And seeing as it appears this used to be a pretty hardcore gamer's rig, the PSU and case are probably pretty solid.
March 15, 2007 7:06:47 PM

Wow...
Hardware sure is cheap in the states :p 
Here, in Denmark it costs quite a lot more..
The intel C2D E6400 (BOX) for example costs 272$. And that's using a danish site, that searches all danish vendors, and comes up with the 10 cheapest.
A geforce 8800GTS 320MB costs 400$.
Besides, the games I'm gonna play mostly, will be: Counter strike: source, company of heroes, battlefield 2 and maybe oblivion..
I don't think I'm gonna buy that many new games, so I don't need the w00t PC, and even though there are no huge opportunities for upgrading the A64 system, I can sell it and buy new...
I also just saw another Conroe system, it's exactly the same as the shuttle, it's just an ordinary miditower and 500W PSU.. That will cost me
900- 1050$. So will the shuttle.
And I don't think it's possible to change the PSU in a shuttle...
March 16, 2007 6:16:14 AM

... What do ya say? :) 
... Actually I have a PC right now, but I'm having big time problems with it. I'll probably post a thread where I look for help later.
March 17, 2007 11:48:32 AM

If a new system is to much, go with the Conroe system in the Midi case. Much better. :) 

Prices in Australia are just as bad the E6300 STARTS from $259.00 Aus. The places you get them from are not always reliable. 8O
!