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Need help with clarifications about CPUs and Video Cards

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June 15, 2007 12:34:10 PM

Hello,

I hope I am posting this in the right section. Im sure these are posted daily and get old but I really do need help understanding some of the things. I have done heavy research on this for about a week and cant come to a conclusion. Also I am having a hard time understanding it.

My current specs

AMD Athlon(tm) 64 Processor 3200+ 2.0 GHz
AGP NVIDIA GeForce 7800 GS
2 gigs of ram

I am looking to get an entire new rig for gaming only. After reading a few review articles about the best mainstream cpu and type of video card, im still left a little fuzzy on which is the best way to go.

Will a
Quad-Core)Intel® Core™ 2 Quad Q6600 @ 2.4GHz 1066FSB 8MB L2 Cache 64-bit

run better than a :

(Sckt775)Intel® Core™ 2 Duo E6700 CPU @ 2.66GHz 1066FSB 2x2MB L2 Cache EM64T

or will the two Pentiums out perform the following :

(Socket AM2) AMD Athlon™64 X2 6000+ Dual-Core CPU w/ HyperTransport Technology()[+120]

(Socket AM2) AMD Athlon™64 X2 5600+ Dual-Core CPU w/ HyperTransport Technology ?

When reading the articles, it seemed it was leaning towards and favoring Intel. They mentioned the AMD x2 line series is going on 2 years now and is becoming really outdated. Where as the Intel Quad and E6700 series and so forth seem to be prefered. As well as being able to do future upgrades. Where the AMD X2 series seems to be coming to an end and wanting to do future upgrades will be harder.


My next question is if going with 2x video cards is better than one power house video card? The ones I am looking at are.

2x NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS 320MB 16X PCI Express

or

NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTX 768MB 16X PCI Express

From what ive gathered and read, I get the impression that the one Geforce GTX with 768MB is better. Where as if having 2x video cards is nice but it tends to bottle neck with data and a few other things.

I dont have any real intention to do any over clocking but am willing to try if I get the itch to.

I also am working with about a $2,000.00 budget. I can go over a little if needed to. I am looking for a PC straight for gaming with this budget. In hopes when Crysis comes out, that I can run the game really well. Also which may be a smarter choice if I decide I want to do upgrades in the future, rather than having to keep buying new motherboards.

Thank you for reading and I am open to any opinions.
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a c 143 U Graphics card
June 15, 2007 1:36:00 PM

Wait until the end of July (price cuts), get a Q6600 and an 8800 GTX.

Mobo: pick it in July. Things are changing fast in that area right now. Something based on the P35 chipset would probably be best in your case, or an Asus P5N32-E SLI Plus.
June 15, 2007 2:00:29 PM

Thank you Aevm.

The price doesnt really bother me but ill take your advice and wait till July for the Mobo. (Grrrr dont want to wait that long :p  )
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June 15, 2007 2:28:31 PM

It's not just the motherboard that would be worth waiting til July for. The CPU prices are being cut as well. Especially if you are considering quad core, it's totally worth it to stick it out for a few more weeks :) 

Although, you will probably spend the money you save on the proc, on the new chipset mobos. Still worth it tho!
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a c 143 U Graphics card
June 15, 2007 2:37:27 PM

Plus there will be new CPUs to pick from.

Q6700 will cost about the same as today's Q6600 but it will be 10% faster (at stock, that is).

QX6850 will be about 25% faster than Q6600. OK, at US$ 999 it's not going to tempt many people, but you never know...
June 15, 2007 2:45:27 PM

Quad-Core)Intel® Core™ 2 Quad Q6600 @ 2.4GHz 1066FSB 8MB L2 Cache 64-bit

(Sckt775)Intel® Core™ 2 Duo E6700 CPU @ 2.66GHz 1066FSB 2x2MB L2 Cache EM64T

When I look at the specs between these two, how is it the quad 6600 peforms better than the Duo E6700? The quad shows 2.4GHz while the E6700 shows 2.66GHz. I use to be able to keep up with this kind of stuff and understand it but latelty im just overwhelmed by all this stuff and am having hard time understanding it all. :) 

Is there a reason for the prices being cut? Is it because something new is coming out and this will no longer be supported?

I dont have to really go for Quad core Thantos. Just whatever is the best option is for gaming. From the tomhardware reviews/articles and even posts ive read. It seems Intel line was favored more. I want to get ready to play these wonderful games coming out soon for the P.C. ( Unreal Tournament 3, Crysis, play Company of Heroes on nice settings and have large scale battles w/o bogging down anymore, etc.....)
June 15, 2007 2:53:47 PM

well as for prices being cut there are a couple of reasons. as they produce more chips, the cost to produce them gets cheeper. if the chips are cheeper then more people will buy them. also they are always going to come out with more chips. they are comming out with new quad core chips and later with pryen. so when the new chips come out, the prices will fall to get rid of stock.

question, i know that Crysis was supposed to read mutiple cores, but was it set up to work with 2cores, or see as many cores as the cpu has and then use all of them?
a b à CPUs
a c 143 U Graphics card
June 15, 2007 3:34:12 PM

The E6700/Q6600 debate has been done before, use the Search button. We've also had one about X6800 vs QX6700. In general, software these days won't even use 2 cores properly, let alone 4. However, that would change in the months and years to come because:

- companies like Microsoft and Sun add/improve support for writing multithreaded programs to their programming frameworks (.Net, J2EE)
- companies that make game engines and license them to game companies do the same
- companies that make their own games do the same

The first two will have bigger effects than the last, but it will take more time until these effects are visible in games.

Somebody put it nicely on one of those threads: you can overclock the dual-core but you can't add cores to it. If in doubt go with the quad.

Good reasons to buy a quad:
- you don't want to upgrade the CPU in the next year or so
- you use applications that can use it (CAD, video encoding, database server, Web Server, programming, smart games like Supreme Commander)
- you do several things in parallel such as downloads+movie+game

Bad reasons to buy a quad:
- trying to compensate for anatomical deficiencies
- too much money and no idea how to get rid of it
- heating solution for cold Canadian winters
- trying to impress girls (hint: buy dual-core, spend the cash difference on flowers)
a c 265 à CPUs
a c 236 U Graphics card
June 15, 2007 3:44:03 PM

For a gaming only machine, focus on the graphics capability. At this point in time a 8800gtx should run just about anything. SLI does not seem worth it to me; check out the vga charts for the games you run. At some point in time, likely in the next year, the 8800gtx will be replaced by something faster. If your needs have not been satisfied, then e-bay the 8800gtx and replace it with the new vga card.
As to the cpu, in july, you should be able to get a E6850(3.0 , fsb1333) or a q6600 for around $266. For gaming, I think the E6850 would be better, unless there are some games you want to play that have been developed for more that 2 cores.

Why the price cuts? Only Intel knows, but some possible reasons: Lower prices mean more sales and profits from a mature low cost product. They want to compete with AMD. They want to clear out inventory in anticipation of 45nm penryn.
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June 15, 2007 3:56:55 PM

Yeah, totally agreed, the GPU is the most important piece for games. Just got a spam from ncix, maybe it helps:

eVGA 8800 GTX overclocked for CAD$ 730
eVGA 8800 Ultra for CAD$ 740

These are much nicer prices than last time I checked. That eVGA GTX is the best flavor of 8800 GTX, according to several reviews I've read.
June 15, 2007 4:11:44 PM

the 8800GTX is a great card, avoid the Ultra though lol, and yes eVga is a great brand.
June 15, 2007 4:39:22 PM

Many thanks again for the help everyone. :) 

I will go ahead and seek out the article between the two chips Aevm. Sorry about that.

While this new computer will be for gaming only, I suppose I can use it for AutoCAD as well since I do drafting.

Thanks again for the help. :) 
!