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Core i5, Core i7, CrossFire, And SLI: Gaming Paradise, Redux?

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September 8, 2009 6:11:52 AM

so we can assume for gaming the 965BE (or 955 oc) and ATi cards are just as fast as Core i7 and i5 but at a fraction of the price
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1
September 8, 2009 6:26:38 AM

The 955 does cost less. The 965 is more expensive than Core i5.
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11
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September 8, 2009 6:28:50 AM

Only thing I don't like is how you knock Crossfire with 2 HD 4870X2's, since when is it even feasible that 4-way CF would scale as well as 2-way SLI?

But excellent review, overall, I'm actually surprised at how the 965BE did, I thought it'd be behind, where it was actually right in the pack.
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8
September 8, 2009 6:47:18 AM

I would have liked to see a 780a or a 980a SLI motherboard used to check the SLI numbers on the P2 965BE. I'm also surprised there's no overclocking numbers in the comparison, is that article still to come out?
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-1
September 8, 2009 6:51:33 AM

It's upcoming dirt; Patrick is the one working on it (and our Italian team sent word of its i5 and i7s in excess of 4.2 GHz)
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9
September 8, 2009 7:01:12 AM

Nice game collection you got there.......:) 

Great review.
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5
September 8, 2009 7:04:40 AM

Quote:
Let us know what you think about this in the comments section, but it was pretty clear that Vista was never a favorite, so we're hoping Windows 7 is a more popular environment in which to test

I like vista, rock solid and stable since I got it years ago. Don't listen to the bashers who never have tried the product.
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6
September 8, 2009 8:50:16 AM

You giotta remember vista is design for spoecific hardware and powerfull hardware that can run it, so people with P4 3GHz and vista complain about its speed, vista is OK, i dont like it cause my computer doesm't like it thats fine i get over it and chnage my OS
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2
September 8, 2009 9:24:02 AM

Thanks for weighing in, guys!
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0
September 8, 2009 10:32:28 AM

So there's no benafit from adding a second 285 to a q9550s or an x4 965 be ??

I get a good performance boost from my second gtx280 with my q9650 @ 4 gz
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-8
September 8, 2009 10:40:29 AM

crash--
As mentioned in the story, these were tested on 790GX and X48 platforms, which don't do SLI. While there are Nvidia-based SLI platforms available for both configurations, I felt that they were quite a bit more rare and applicable to a much smaller contingent of readers than the CrossFire-capable platforms. The beauty of X58 and P55 is that they'll do both!
Regards,
Chris
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4
September 8, 2009 11:04:12 AM

Kudos for adding the Flight Simulator X as a benchmark.
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5
September 8, 2009 12:27:00 PM

Why so many tests today with 2 4870x2s?

I'd rather have seen 4890 and then 4890CF. That way you see single card performance compared to crossfire instead of dual corssfire compared to quad crossfire.

I do understand why the card is compared to the GTX 285 based on price though.
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11
Anonymous
a b 4 Gaming
September 8, 2009 12:45:05 PM

Let's be glad AMD is still around to provide competition to Intel. Gaming is obviously fine on either CPU, but some people say: "OMG, I must have the Core i7 because it can do the Monte Carlo simulation faster!!!". The performance difference between Core i7/Phenom II is marginal right now, but if AMD were to exit stage left, then these round ups would be VIA vs. Intel, and I don't know about you, but VIA's offerings really AREN'T fast enough for me... Consider a Phenom II, I love mine...
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12
September 8, 2009 3:20:16 PM

competition_fanblokeLet's be glad AMD is still around to provide competition to Intel. Gaming is obviously fine on either CPU, but some people say: "OMG, I must have the Core i7 because it can do the Monte Carlo simulation faster!!!". The performance difference between Core i7/Phenom II is marginal right now, but if AMD were to exit stage left, then these round ups would be VIA vs. Intel, and I don't know about you, but VIA's offerings really AREN'T fast enough for me... Consider a Phenom II, I love mine...

I wish there is a third and fourth player in the market so AMD won't sit on its butt and do nothing. AMD has this idea that “we don’t have to compete on performance, just make our product cheap enough and people will buy it”. That’s what doomed GM and Chrysler.

I wish Nvidia and NEC join/rejoin the CPU market.
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7
September 8, 2009 3:27:26 PM

Thank you, Toms, for the detailed Graphics comparison. Yet regarding the comments section, I have to shake my head that we're again continuing the AMD versus Intel wars.

I thought people should have learned by now that GPU~intensive tests say little about CPUs, except whether they're 'Good Enough', or not.
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2
September 8, 2009 5:26:03 PM

I wonder if u will ever include WOW in ur benchmark suite. Its just a MMORPG but it happens to be the most played game on the planet, thus making it interesting for a lot of us out there who are looking on information when deciding to buy one video card vs another or one processor vs another. Thnkz.
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-8
Anonymous
a b 4 Gaming
September 8, 2009 5:37:47 PM

Pei-Chen: This article shobuld make it painfully obvious that AMD can and DOES compete on performance in games. AMD has brought plenty of innovation, even if they don't always finish first, but only for the CPU-based video rendering enthusiast does it make no sense to purchase AMD, the other 99.9% of us couldn't tell the difference in a taste test.

PS: If you want a 3rd and 4th player, you should go discuss x86 licensing with your beloved Intel...
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13
September 8, 2009 7:04:49 PM

The only question that remains for me is how things will turn once the DirectX 11 cards are announced.

Then, I can see x8 PCIe2.0 links hurting the P55 chipset and the X58 showing its true potential.

This will definitely affect SLI/Crossfire setups but I am not sure how it will affect single card solutions.
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3
September 8, 2009 8:04:21 PM

anonymous xI like vista, rock solid and stable since I got it years ago. Don't listen to the bashers who never have tried the product.

Agreed. Vista was pretty good after all the manufactures released the drivers. I still think Win 7 is better than XP and Vista.
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4
September 8, 2009 8:11:41 PM

Few things people should know:

1. LGA775 is dead now, so don't build PCs on that unless really in a budget.

2. The LGA 1156 will NOT have hexcore CPUs.

3. The current LGA1366 is meant as the higher end option and was more or less designed for the HPC/server crowd along with the ethuist.

4. If you live near a Microcenter, you can grab a i7 920 for $200 which I believe is a very good idea.
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3
September 8, 2009 9:39:38 PM

Why does AMD suck sooo much?!?! I (thought) I loved AMD but the 965 is a complete JOKE! 140W at 3.4Ghz and it just stays w/ the Intel i7-920@2.66????? O.o tht's not right. And trust me, I'm not hating on AMD, just constructive criticism :D  and these i5's and new i7's are just going to bowl them over. They need to pull somethin out... like NOW!
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-7
September 8, 2009 10:02:19 PM

AMDnoobWhy does AMD suck sooo much?!?! I (thought) I loved AMD but the 965 is a complete JOKE! 140W at 3.4Ghz and it just stays w/ the Intel i7-920@2.66????? O.o tht's not right. And trust me, I'm not hating on AMD, just constructive criticism and these i5's and new i7's are just going to bowl them over. They need to pull somethin out... like NOW!


It's only constructive criticism if you drive down to Austin, TX and slap plans for a new industry-leading CPU down on the table in front of them... Three years ago... Unless you can manage that, I suggest you not call your baseless whining "constructive criticism" and keep it to yourself. AMD is a pretty damn small company compared to Intel, with not nearly as many engineers. They don't just put together a table of specs, draw up some line art in Photoshop and run it through a freakin' copy machine!!

Btw, clock frequency doesn't mean any more today than it did when the P4 was big. If it scales, it scales. Also, TDP isn't measured the same by both companies. I'm not saying which is over/underestimated, just that your complaint is complete bull because you're spitting our numbers you don't know the real meaning of.

Finally, nobody is going to bowl anybody over. Intel wants to compete with AMD. Why? Because they make huge margins competing against AMD's hardware. It's quite clear that they're not paying nearly as much to fabricate these chips based on relative performance to any given AMD SKU, and they like it that way.
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5
September 8, 2009 10:05:03 PM

The whole reason why intel is ahead now is because at first Sun went to them and talked about sharing their multicore knowledge Intel said FU and they went to AMD who gladly took their knowledge. Hence why dual core AMDs were faster than Intels first. After AMD was beating the crap out of Intel they asked Sun to help them out. Now that's why they're better. Nice to have a huge R & D budget.

Personally I'll stick with AMD because all I do is play games for the most part and the FPS difference is marginal.
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3
September 8, 2009 10:07:37 PM

SardaukarzI wonder if u will ever include WOW in ur benchmark suite. Its just a MMORPG but it happens to be the most played game on the planet, thus making it interesting for a lot of us out there who are looking on information when deciding to buy one video card vs another or one processor vs another. Thnkz.


I'd like to see that too, but it would be a litte pointless in this case since WoW doesn't utilise multiple GPU setups
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2
September 8, 2009 10:44:52 PM

Wow. Some moron -1ed all the comments.
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-2
September 8, 2009 10:48:37 PM

Yes! Thanks Tom's for the FSX Benchmark! Very helpful article.
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0
September 8, 2009 11:48:48 PM

I think from a cost/performance perspective looks like a good time to be a gamer. Pedro makes a good point, Why not a 4890 and then CF4890? I wonder if the scalability would have been diffrent w/CF4890? Maybe revisit a camparison when a GTX295 becomes available?

Thanks for the valuable information and great review :) 
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1
September 9, 2009 12:56:24 AM

Great. Still feeling good about my PII X4 955 build from a month and a half ago. For all intents and purposes once a decent resolution and quality options are applied the difference is slim to none and all a very playable.
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0
September 9, 2009 1:12:15 AM

Jeff,
Yeah, that's still a solid build. As you can see, once the resolutions and settings are high-enough, it's graphics that'll hold back performance.
Regards,
Chris
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0
September 9, 2009 2:17:12 AM

What a BS review, 4 GPUs vs 2 or 2 vs 1 just because you wanted to go COST. GIVE ME A DAMN BREAK. I knew Toms had been doing its best to cater to AMD lately, but this just simply cements it. Tri-SLi and Quad SLi gets better results in Far Cry2, but none here would know that.
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-5
September 9, 2009 2:39:20 AM

I am thinking if the PII 965BE drops down to $150.00 I will certainly get one for me and the wife. I will only have to replace the mb. All the rest can stay. Upgrade two systems for about 500 bucks that aint bad. I was also worried about AMD but they will be fine. Their video card division is the shazizzle ;-) Anyway did you see the AMD stock today. I would have thought that it would have gone down but it jumped 14.57 percent!
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-1
Anonymous
a b 4 Gaming
September 9, 2009 3:02:23 AM

For Flight Simulator X, the reason your frame rates are at 20 is because you haven't moved the frame lock. If you move it to the right to either 35 or unlimited, you will get different results.
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2
September 9, 2009 3:07:11 AM

Nice job Chris!

AMD is really in the soup right now, but I think one thing that should be remembered is that the I7-920 maybe still the best bargain for those that overclock at the upper end as even Intel has admited that the P55 cant compete at the upper end of the I7-900.
I7-9xx O/C better due to the fact that the onchip PCI of the p55 I7s is being overclocked along with the proc and it doesnt have seperate voltage control or any ability to seperate the frequecy (not yet), but I have the feeling Intel is going to pull them..

Was nice to see the FSX results, that game is a monster esp if you add those delicious scenery and aircraft packages like PMG or HongKong/Manhatten scenery etc. I think someone should lend you a hand on the setup however as "capped" is def not the way it is used to its max and there are ways to get a good repeatable bench out of the game. you have to turn some of the features that become random like certain weather and airtraffic settings off. It is possible to get steady FPS of low 30's in well overclocked Intel or AMD setup with many of the settings maxed out while using incredably adavnced and detailed add-ons.

BTW: Asus my be the only ones with an AMD SLI setup right now but MSI are soon to release a very nice tripple SLI AM3 board. I was setup Asus N4N82 3-way SLI board and it took a 940 up to 4ghz on air with 8gigs or ram at near 12000 levels. pretty impresive, but its a bugy board with ref clock going in steps of 2, 0.6 and then 3.4 etc...weird.

I think my next personal build is still going to be I7-920 and MSI micro @ $170 or the EVGA SLI LE @ $210. 4-4.4Ghz on air with I7-920 cant be beat and the price is just a tick over the p55 with more O/C headroom.

I do like that new MSI p55-80 board though! Chow!

Sorry for the double post I meant to post here, not the other thread.
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0
September 9, 2009 3:46:36 AM

I was just trying to compare the i5 750 to the Q9650 which runs at 3ghz. Both processors seem to be evenly matched in gaming and that is with the turbo on for the i5 750 which makes it run at 2.93GHz. So clock for clock they are pretty close. Right? I mean the turbo can throw you off because the i5 750 base speed is 2.6GHz but when it goes into turbo it speeds up to 2.93GHz. Clock for clock they all pretty much seem the same. Of course I see no reason to turn the turbo off. So it is auto overclocking which really is not overclocking since it is built in.....am I correct in my assumption>?
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-2
September 9, 2009 3:55:57 AM

Well, it seems that the lynnfield cpus are inline with what was to be expected, as well it seems that the limitation of the PCI-E lanes is also limithing the results, as expected.

The I7-920 is a slower cpu than the 870, but pulling higher numbers in crossfire and sli when pushed hard. Not so much in single card mode because each is running at full potential.

So the remaining question is, at what point will X8 + X8 PCI-E Not keep up with the 1366 boards. Seems to me that this point is approaching now, how crippled will it be in 6 monts to 1 year.
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1
September 9, 2009 7:20:54 AM

these benchmarks make more sence to me. still its hard to decide which one to go for either phenom 955 or i5 750 both have advantages and disadvantages. AMD will offer you a 6 core part however somewhere in the middle of next year which will work on every decent am3 socket board. intel will however not bring out much new stuff for lynnfield. However from the start here lynnfiels is faster and with some overclocking it breaks the record while phenom 955 is already near its limits. Also i must note there still is a reasonable price diffrence and lynnfield still is somewhat more expansive. but i expact the prices to drop a little bit over the days as those wont be preorder anymore. I hope AMD will react on this by cutting the phenom 955 a bit further too.
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0
September 9, 2009 7:24:20 AM

dirtmountainHere you go mognet, a post on WoW forums about how to use 4 cores and even 4 cores with HT in WoW.http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/ [...] rhtml=true

I know you can use mutli core cpus

I said it doesn't support multi GPU ie SLI or Crossfire
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-1
September 9, 2009 7:26:27 AM

SardaukarzI wonder if u will ever include WOW in ur benchmark suite. Its just a MMORPG but it happens to be the most played game on the planet, thus making it interesting for a lot of us out there who are looking on information when deciding to buy one video card vs another or one processor vs another. Thnkz.


lol WoW could be maxed out completely with a single 4770 and a dual core cpu faster than 2.5 ghz its not demanding enough to really be considered in benchmarks any half decent desktop from 2008 with decent mainstream graphics cards could play WoW maxed out
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2
September 9, 2009 7:49:17 AM

Maybe if you are just soloing. Running a 3.6 GHz OC PII X3 and a 4770 i drop can drop below 30fps in raids with alot going on. Trouble is its really difficult to create a consistant, reproducable situation to benchmark WoW given that the only time when it will stress is in a raiding environment.
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-1
September 9, 2009 9:33:47 AM

good stuff toms!
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-3
Anonymous
a b 4 Gaming
September 9, 2009 9:57:01 AM

Regarding WoW, it'd be a good game to use for CPU benchmarks especially as the places where you get FPS drops are for the most part very CPU-bound. Cue Dalaran, or Wintergrasp during a large battle.

WoW is however, in my experience, vastly favoring the nVidia GPU architechture. I get similar framerates using my old XFX 7950GT XXX 512Mb and my newer Sapphire 4870 1Gb with all settings but shadows maxed, and the nVidia card offers better AA in WoW to boot. *sigh*

So yeah, it's a mixed bag for review purposes but it'll probably be appreciated as it is - as several posters have already pointed out - the most played game out there.
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0
September 9, 2009 2:18:07 PM

The only 4870 x2 thats on Newegg is $499 and the cheapest 285 is $339 and that would be cheaper then what I seen the 4870 x2 sell for.
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-1
September 9, 2009 2:57:16 PM

ExoditeRegarding WoW, it'd be a good game to use for CPU benchmarks especially as the places where you get FPS drops are for the most part very CPU-bound. Cue Dalaran, or Wintergrasp during a large battle.WoW is however, in my experience, vastly favoring the nVidia GPU architechture. I get similar framerates using my old XFX 7950GT XXX 512Mb and my newer Sapphire 4870 1Gb with all settings but shadows maxed, and the nVidia card offers better AA in WoW to boot. *sigh*So yeah, it's a mixed bag for review purposes but it'll probably be appreciated as it is - as several posters have already pointed out - the most played game out there.


Really? My 4850 (512MB) outperforms my old 8800GT (512MB) playing WoW, with the same settings enabled. But that could just be a fluke as I think WoW is or at least was optimized for Nvidia cards.
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-1
September 9, 2009 3:24:15 PM

Want to bet when they get them they'll be $500.
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0
September 9, 2009 3:27:17 PM

It's so irritating to see Crysis benchmarks.

To start, the game is mediocre.

The game was released nearly 2 YEARS ago, and the current, state of the art hardware rigs still cannot squeeze out enough power to make the game run at any FPS that would be considered "Silky".

What exactly does that tell you?

It tells you that the efficiency of the coding of these new shading techniques etc in Crysis, suck giant ballsack.
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-1
September 9, 2009 4:07:11 PM

baddadThe only 4870 x2 thats on Newegg is $499 and the cheapest 285 is $339 and that would be cheaper then what I seen the 4870 x2 sell for.


They are using here some OC'd m**r FU**r geforce edition so base your estimations on that.
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-1
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