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Building new Rig, Questions about 9850BE

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June 17, 2008 2:17:35 PM

Hi, new here so first post here goes:

I am looking into building a new rig this summer and have one major concern. First I plan on waiting till next week to make sure that the new ATI cards at least semi-live up to expectations, an dmy intention to to get a 4870 and eventuallt get another one to crossfire (maybe even at the same time, but that is my intention).

My problem is with the CPU side. I would like to save the moeny on motherboard and RAM (DDR2 versus DDR3) and go for the Phenom 9850 BE. But am really concerned that I will be CPU limiting my system, wasting the moeny I am spending on my GPUs. I would obviously like to wait for the new Deneb cores, but that could easily wind up being 2009, and I haven't heard of any plans of more 65nm chips from AMD.

My question would be, intending to get bettter cooling for it (not water, but something better then what it comes with) and hopefully getting a close to 2.9-3.0GHz range, is my concern about CPU limiting my system valid. And is it worth the $350+ more ($100 more on the mobo, $50 on the CPU, and $150+ for DDR3 RAM) worth it to get one of the newer Intel CPUs (Q9300)?

I would like to keep my budget under $1500, and it seems that my only options are either crossfiring with the 9850 BE or going with one chip and an Intel CPU (unless there are good boards I don't know about that use DDR2 memory and support at least 2x-crossfire though I would be more happy with having tri-quad-crossfire potential).

Thanks so much for your help!
June 17, 2008 2:37:04 PM

It depends on what kind of programs you are running. Most of the time (gaming included), GPU is more of a bottleneck compared to CPU.

As for Intel CPU, in my opinion, I don't think spending an extra 350USD is worth it. You can still use the DDR2 from the AMD rig though, so that will likely bring the price difference down to 150USD.
June 17, 2008 2:55:33 PM

Even though people kepp ragging on the Phenom, it is not a bad processor. It was just not what people expected. It was late, it couldn't keep up with the hype and it had a rather bad start. All that aside, it is not a bad processor - intel just has a better one.
Given the price difference, i would pick the phenom, no questions asked. It is not a slow processor or a bad one.
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June 17, 2008 3:02:21 PM

Get an intel Q6600 for $205, it will have its way with the 9850BE, the intel will also overclock to 3.2GHZ EASY. The 9850 will catch on fire and burn your house down if you overclock it that much. I had a Q6600 set to 3.2 with a cooler master gemini heatsink and it never hit 100F at full load.

For your board, I am now running a GA-EX38-DS4 gigabyte board which supports crossfire. It also supports memory up to DDR2-1200 and 1600fsb, I run 4GB of G.Skill 1066mhz. Though I am running a Q9450 now, the Q6600 will run fine in it. For your card, get a 4870 or 4850 when they come out and crossfire in a few months.

Sorry to sound so rough on AMD, but they have no game. A co-worker at my shop build a guy an Athlon X2 6000+, 2gb ram, and 2 8800GT 512s in SLi and couldn't get 12000 in the 3DMark06. I got that with my Q6600, 2gb of ram, and an 8800GTS 320MB!
June 17, 2008 3:16:02 PM

If you overclock the q6600 is the way to go.Up here in Canada its $26 dollars cheaper than the 9850be,and if you pair that with a p5q pro mobo you have a very good ocing board for $150 that has pcie 2.0 slots and crossfire at 8x8 speeds.
June 17, 2008 3:33:16 PM

DONT LISTEN THE THESE FAN BOYS FOR INTEL . get the 9850 be and overclock it to 2.8 with a zalman 9700 led copper cooler. u can get a motherboard with a 790fx chipset for up to FOUR pciE 2.0 graphic cards. you cant to that on intel at least not on a intel mobo that cost 150 bux can. msi k9a2 platinum. thats what i have. i may not have the best synthetic bench scores with my dual 3850s @770mhz but i can play everything max on my 1080p 42 inch minus sync every frame smooth as silk.

however the new 4800 are about top come out that just means i can get the older 3850s and finsih my quad gpu setup :)  at a reasonable cost . im thinking 2 more 3850s will be less then a 4870 and with quad gpus you can be sure ill have great performance no matter what a synthetic benchmark says. go amd save some dough and play smooth as silk. that all you really want right???
June 17, 2008 3:43:31 PM

to clear things up the msi k9a2 platinum mobo has 4 pcie 2.0 slots.

the first set run at full 2.0 16x specs when paired.
if you add a 3rd it will drop to 1x @ 16x 2.0spec and 2x @ 8x 2.0spec
and with 4 cards installed you get 4x 8x pcie 2.0 spec.

with a 150 dollar intel board you get what??? 2x slots @ 8x pcie 2.0 . thats funny.

these days a GOOD intel board costs much more then your t ypical mainstream cpu. which is what most of you will pair it up with. save with amd and get those killer GPUs and crossfire. im telling you . you cant go wrong.

June 17, 2008 3:47:55 PM

If you are waiting on the new ATI video cards... you should also wait and see what happens with the new motherboards with SB750 southbridges.

Initial reports show that the 9850 might be very easy to overclock to 3.4Ghz using one of these new motherboards. The 9850 competes very well with any chip in the same price range, especially at those speeds. Some people claim that the Phenom gains more for each added megahertz as clock speed goes up. (But I think we need to see more comparative benchmarks showing this; although it is not hard to believe this based on architecture.)

There are generally no overheating problems with these chips other than what is posted on these forums. My experiences are contrary: At 2.8Ghz-2.9Ghz my 9850 stays below 50C, at stock it rarely goes above 43C, and at idle it runs between 30C and 33C. (Althogh I admit I own a Zalman 9700.)

It appears that reasons given in the past for owning one brand over the other seem to be going away as the AMD chips and chipsets mature. (Although we can expect people on many different forums to hold onto these reasons and continue quoting them for a long time after they are no longer true.)
June 17, 2008 3:53:01 PM

also using the 6400+ be dual core ( if you want to go that route. i wouldnt) you can post at 3.5 and run stable at 3.4. on my older asus mvr32 mvp i could only hit 3.4 post and 3.3 stable. the msi board is a very solid mobo if u dont want to wait for the new bs 700 and sb 750 boards
June 17, 2008 3:55:22 PM

Its got nothing to do with fanboys,its got to do with performance per $,and the q6600 smokes a 9850be in that regard if your going to overclock them both.I was looking into getting that same phenom for my last build so i could get crossfireX but scaling past 2 cards is a joke atm.The 790fx mobo are also $210+ so if you went with wardancerx4's suggestion you end up spending $86 more for a cpu/mobo that will on avg would end up being what......6-800 mhz slower and have 2 extra pcie slots that are useless to you. If you aren't a overclocker the difference between the 2 cpu's is moot,if you are a overclocker the difference is huge.
June 17, 2008 4:00:12 PM

haha. the msi k9a2 platunim is 150 not 210 and it has a 790 fx. chipset :)  and if only using 2 pcie slots your geting ful x16 2.0 bandwitdh . not 2x 8x :)  s

you wont get that on a 150 dollar intel mobo.

dont be a fanboy.
June 17, 2008 4:09:40 PM

I'm not being a fanboy, i always go with the fastest option for the best price.All of my computers where Amd64 when they where king,and since the core2's came out there has been no reason to build amd machines for gaming unless they where ultra low budget. That 210 price i mentioned is the cheapest i can get a 790fx board for up here,if you can get them for cheaper where you are great.Hell if you can get a phenom for cheaper than a q6600 where you are than the phenom starts to become a viable option.But at the prices in Canada your shooting your self in the foot performance wise for a more expensive system of you go phenom.
June 17, 2008 4:15:18 PM

well in good ol USA on NEWegg i can get a phenom for 235 and a mobo for 150.

the q6600 is 219. any motherboard i would want for it would cost me at least 250 to 300 plus dollars.

the q6600 is fine. i had a stcok hp oem that i crags listed for 750 bux. i didnt want to spend the money on a new mobo. the x48 mobos dont come cheap.

but dont bash the cpu because its not faster then an intel cpu. the intel has its own bottlenecks.

i like the feel of the onboard memory controler with phenoms.

the idea here is a balanced system.
a b à CPUs
June 17, 2008 4:22:31 PM

Now that the AMD 4870 and 4850 GPU cards are out you could build a powerful Spider system with the Phenom X4 9860 BE CPU.Again you might want to wait for 750 southbridge chipset 790FX northbridge chipset motherboards to come out like keithlm said (also you will get a nice 3.2 Ghz overclock on the 9850 BE CPU).Plus the 4850 and 4870 will run with up to 4 cards in crossfire with the 790FX chipset.The MSI K9A2 Platinum motherboard (790FX) is under $150 and the ASUS M3A32-MVP Deluxe (790FX) is around $190 at Newegg.There is also a possibility that you will be able to upgrade the CPU in the future with a AMD Deneb but this will only support DDR 2 with current AM2+ motherboards if they have bios support for the Deneb.
Because of the 4870 and 4850GPU's I'd go ahead with getting the AMD Phenom X4 9850 BE CPU.

June 17, 2008 4:29:55 PM

K i went shopping at the egg too, q6600 209.99
dfi dk x38 mobo with crossfire 16x16 149.99

And i'm not bashing any cpu,i'm just answering the OP's question.Why recommend a slower cpu for more money? And you call me a fanboy lol?
Maybe you should look in the mirror.
June 17, 2008 4:36:06 PM

no not at all id say thats smart shoping.
if that mobo was out at that cost 3 months ago i may have kept my q6600. it wasnt.

however im still going to add 2 more gpus and thas why i went amd when i build this system .

regaurdless of what scaling issues you see. i saw very clearly how Cod4 scaledvery well with 4 g pus. i happen to play that game everysay on the big screen.


June 17, 2008 4:36:41 PM

and the dfi bouad is 180 with 7 bux shiping in usa
June 17, 2008 4:36:43 PM

Ya i got 2 spots on my mobo saved for a couple 4870's,the wait is killin me though.
June 17, 2008 4:39:06 PM

:)  me to. i was thinking of geting a single 4870 ut i think 2 3850s added would make this system faster at 1080 then a single 4870
June 17, 2008 4:39:36 PM

added on top of the current 2 3850 oced at 770mhz
June 17, 2008 4:43:23 PM

Ya CoD4 scales like a mofo,but its one of the only games that does.And unless your running 2560x1600 resolution there is no use yet for 4 gpu's,hell even then its overkill.
June 17, 2008 4:46:20 PM

Oops,that dfi board i had picked was a open box job,my bad.
June 17, 2008 4:56:53 PM

Well this AMD Processor is good but the let's not forget about the Amd's Erratum in the new processors 9700+.. system load too much=CRASH!
June 17, 2008 5:28:33 PM

TiberiumSoldier said:
Well this AMD Processor is good but the let's not forget about the Amd's Erratum in the new processors 9700+.. system load too much=CRASH!


Do you mean the erratum that was fixed so it's no longer important? (And since it's fixed... it's not worth mentioning anymore?)

a c 96 à CPUs
June 17, 2008 5:32:52 PM

ngeunit1 didn't realize into what he was stepping ... :lol: 

By the end of the year a 95w Phenom 9850BE with an AMD 790gx mobo will rule its Intel and nVidia underlings. Bow down to your AMD masters today and benevolence may be afforded you in the future.

If you can't wait on the 790gx (or 790fx w/ sb750) and 95w 9850BE may as well go to the dark side with an e8400. Too bad you'll miss the goodness of 4870XT x 2 (3? 4?)

:bounce: 
June 17, 2008 5:33:14 PM

Thanks so much for the info.

I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick with the 9850 BE and wait for the SB750. I might also think about the 9950 (if its ever happens), but it seems like an OC'ed 9850 will cover more gorund then the locked 9950 would.
a c 96 à CPUs
June 17, 2008 5:42:07 PM

ngeunit1 said:
Thanks so much for the info.

I'm pretty sure I'm going to stick with the 9850 BE and wait for the SB750. I might also think about the 9950 (if its ever happens), but it seems like an OC'ed 9850 will cover more gorund then the locked 9950 would.


Lookee here
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=19...

3.4GHz 9850BE 125w Phenom on 790gx at stock AMD 200MHz clock

When the 95w Phenom 9850BEs roll in Q4 the silence from Team Chipzilla will be deafening
June 17, 2008 5:47:55 PM

You're probably fine either way. At stock speeds the Q6600 and the 9850BE are about equal and a Q6600 + X38 board close in price price to a 9850BE + 790FX combination.

If you overclock each one then the Q6600 will win easily, though most games rely mostly on the video card, not the CPU.

If you're using this rig for anything other than gaming then CPU can be more of a bottleneck, but for gaming I don't think you can really go wrong with either choice.
June 17, 2008 6:12:05 PM

Wisecracker said:

When the 95w Phenom 9850BEs roll in Q4 the silence from Team Chipzilla will be deafening


Silence?? Are you kidding?

They'll still be telling us about how the 9850 can't compete with the Q6600, overheats, and can't overclock.
June 17, 2008 6:19:24 PM

Slobogob said:
Even though people kepp ragging on the Phenom, it is not a bad processor. It was just not what people expected. It was late, it couldn't keep up with the hype and it had a rather bad start. All that aside, it is not a bad processor - intel just has a better one.
Given the price difference, i would pick the phenom, no questions asked. It is not a slow processor or a bad one.


it's a piece. he'd be better of getting an e8400 for gaming...now if theres video encoding then phenom, if not go intel or wait till fall for the deneb based chips.

June 17, 2008 6:22:36 PM

Secondly you noobs...you can now run crossfire and an intel cpu too...
June 17, 2008 6:37:35 PM

wardancerx4 said:
DONT LISTEN THE THESE FAN BOYS FOR INTEL . get the 9850 be and overclock it to 2.8 with a zalman 9700 led copper cooler. u can get a motherboard with a 790fx chipset for up to FOUR pciE 2.0 graphic cards. you cant to that on intel at least not on a intel mobo that cost 150 bux can. msi k9a2 platinum. thats what i have. i may not have the best synthetic bench scores with my dual 3850s @770mhz but i can play everything max on my 1080p 42 inch minus sync every frame smooth as silk.

however the new 4800 are about top come out that just means i can get the older 3850s and finsih my quad gpu setup :)  at a reasonable cost . im thinking 2 more 3850s will be less then a 4870 and with quad gpus you can be sure ill have great performance no matter what a synthetic benchmark says. go amd save some dough and play smooth as silk. that all you really want right???


Sorry but that weak phenom would be an injustice to 4 cards, it's not even gonna push 2 4850's
June 17, 2008 6:43:17 PM

and how do you know. your using 5400+ and a 790 gm, what do u know about pushing power. phenom is more then enough.
June 17, 2008 6:44:32 PM

havnt you heard of spider. oviously is cod4 scales well with 4 gpus on a spider platform then it has the jiuce to push it . funny boy
June 17, 2008 6:45:48 PM

its pushing 2 3850 @ 1080p no prob. i have the setup you have x2 400 . how do you know???
June 17, 2008 6:55:14 PM

Wisecracker said:
Lookee here
http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=19...

3.4GHz 9850BE 125w Phenom on 790gx at stock AMD 200MHz clock

When the 95w Phenom 9850BEs roll in Q4 the silence from Team Chipzilla will be deafening


You must be joking right?

#1 - The Q6600 is faster Clock for Clock than Phenom.

#2 - 3.4Ghz is not considered a very high OC on the Q6600.
3.6-3.8 are not uncommon and Prime Stable, Not simply Boot Stable.
And we are not even counting in the performance difference per clock.

#3 - Did you See the Voltage Required?

:pfff: 
June 17, 2008 7:00:10 PM

wardancerx4 said:
its pushing 2 3850 @ 1080p no prob. i have the setup you have x2 400 . how do you know???


I wouldn't brag about pushing 2 3850's.
June 17, 2008 7:05:17 PM

3.4 ghz on the new southbridge would be a really nice jump up for the phenoms.
June 17, 2008 7:15:53 PM

zenmaster said:
You must be joking right?

#1 - The Q6600 is faster Clock for Clock than Phenom.

#2 - 3.4Ghz is not considered a very high OC on the Q6600.
3.6-3.8 are not uncommon and Prime Stable, Not simply Boot Stable.
And we are not even counting in the performance difference per clock.

#3 - Did you See the Voltage Required?

:pfff: 



#1 - The Q6600 is not faster clock per clock than the currently available 9850. A bunch of Intel fans like to keep repeating that mantra... but it doesn't make it true.

(EDIT: Actually it would be more accurate to say that the Phenom has no problem "stock per stock". Although there is no definitive winner at a clock per clock comparison.)

#2 - You are correct: 3.4Ghz is not uncommon for the Q6600. In fact it is probably the upper limit of average for an overclock of that chip on air.

#3 - What is your point here: The person who did that said he just put the voltage on MAX and didn't try anything else.
June 17, 2008 8:30:38 PM

keithlm said:
#1 - The Q6600 is not faster clock per clock than the currently available 9850. A bunch of Intel fans like to keep repeating that mantra... but it doesn't make it true.


#1 - Yes it is. Please link where the stock 9850 matches up to the Q6600 even though the 9850 is clocked at 2.5ghz vs 2.4ghz for the Q6600. I'm a fan of whichever company makes the fastest/best item in my price range. Right now I suppose that makes me a fan of Intel chips.

In this review I found only a couple of examples of the 9850 beating the Q6600. In most cases the Q6600 beats the 9850 easily.
http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=327...


a b à CPUs
June 17, 2008 8:44:17 PM

It depends on whether one is using DDR2-800 RAM or DDR2-1066.
Most benchmarks are using DDR2-800.
Using DDR2-800 the Phenom X4 9850 BE is slightly slower than the Intel Quad Core 6600 at stock speeds.The big performance gain is when one overclocks the Q6600.However with the upcoming 750SB the 9850BE will finally get some decent overclocking ability.
June 17, 2008 9:04:45 PM

You guys still make this a great place for a good laugh.

I have both Intel and AMD quads. If you put a shroud over both systems, I bet $1000 anyone here couldn't tell them apart without looking at the system specs.

I love the blind fanatacism here more and more everytime I read these posts.

Let the guy buy what he wants to buy and stop trying to force your (sometimes uneducated) opinions on people.
June 17, 2008 9:10:48 PM

uguv said:

In this review I found only a couple of examples of the 9850 beating the Q6600. In most cases the Q6600 beats the 9850 easily.
http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=327...



Congratulations on linking one of the most biased reviews available. They don't bother using DDR2-1066 memory for the Phenom but DO use DDR3 memory for the Intel chip. (Just a little bit of bias, eh?)

For the Intel architecture the difference in memory speed is not that big of a deal. For the AMD chips... going from DDR2-800 to DDR2-1066 can give you about a 200 point difference in your 3DMark06 scores. Anyone can do simple logic in their heads and realize that the memory speed difference will also make a difference in many other benchmarks.

I personally can't justify giving one chip a handicap and then claiming a "winner" based on the biased results.
June 17, 2008 9:25:42 PM

You can also check Tom's CPU chart, where both Q6600 and 9700 (they don't have 9850BE) uses both DDR2-800. Phenom 9700 is consistently slower than Q6600 in almost all benchmarks. If you try to predict 9850BE's performance by using linear regression on Phenom 9700 and 9600's performance, it would put 9850BE slightly slower than Q6600.

Jeez, is it really that difficult to admit that AMD lost this round?
June 17, 2008 9:31:56 PM

yomamafor1 said:
You can also check Tom's CPU chart, where both Q6600 and 9700 (they don't have 9850BE) uses both DDR2-800. Phenom 9700 is consistently slower than Q6600 in almost all benchmarks. If you try to predict 9850BE's performance by using linear regression on Phenom 9700 and 9600's performance, it would put 9850BE slightly slower than Q6600.

Jeez, is it really that difficult to admit that AMD lost this round?


Oh... I see. You want to use slower memory on both. Even though the memory will make a huge difference for one and not very much of a difference for the other.

Uh. Just no. What you propose is just as bad. In addition using bad results and then doing a linear regression will give you... BAD RESULTS.

Why not use the optimal memory for both. (Other than by doing that you won't get the results that YOU want.)

Let me repeat: I personally can't justify giving one chip a handicap and then claiming a "winner" based on the biased results.
June 17, 2008 9:36:18 PM

The DDR2-800 memory is a lot more common than 1066Mhz, as DDR2-1066 memory modules are more expensive. As a result, the test result is a lot more relevant to users than using "optimal memory for both", as you proposed.

June 17, 2008 9:45:26 PM

yomamafor1 said:
The DDR2-800 memory is a lot more common than 1066Mhz, as DDR2-1066 memory modules are more expensive. As a result, the test result is a lot more relevant to users than using "optimal memory for both", as you proposed.


And the minor price difference in the memory is relevant to WHO?

OH... for someone that wants to give one chip a handicap so they can win their benchmark.

Besides... using your "logic" explain the use of DDR3 memory for Intel and NOT using DDR2-1066 memory for the Phenom on the Anand benchmark?
a b à CPUs
June 17, 2008 9:47:43 PM

Yes DDR2-1066 is more expensive.However 8 gigabytes of DDR2-1066 is still fairly inexpensive when building a new system.Memory is inexpensive these days.
June 17, 2008 10:03:52 PM

DDR2-800 actually is the dominant memory speed on the market, and often time is the only choice in some part of the world.

The DDR3-1066 memory Anand used actually has identical performance compared to DDR2-800.
http://www.anandtech.com/memory/showdoc.aspx?i=3045&p=7
http://images.anandtech.com/reviews/memory/ddr3/st-team...

So why does Anand use it? Possibly due to shortage of Intel DDR2 motherboard, or DDR2 memory module. However, as it can be seen that DDR3-1066 does not offer any performance increase (and in some cases, decrease) above DDR2-800.
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