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Q6600 vs. E8400 & MMORPG's

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May 15, 2008 7:14:39 PM

basically im having some conflicting thoughts...

after reading the new article that was posted, im beginning to think that my plan for dual 8800gts's will be bottlenecked by the Q6600 quite a bit if i dont overclock it alot. (something i probably cant do) (the most i was thinking to OC it to was 3.2-3.6 if possible)

not to mention i only play MMO's and i probably wont need a quad core for many years to come to play them.

Ive done a lot of research on the Q6600 but i know very little on the e8400. if anyone could give me any information on it i would be most appreciative.

Questions:

1) How high can it be overclocked on air. (im getting a Xigmatek rifle 120mm cpu cooler.

2) does the e8400 have random core issues like the Q6600? the b3 stepping and the go-stepping and all that?

3) How long do you guys think it'll last me for playing MMO's w/ dual 8800gts. (max graphics as long as possible) (i play just about every new MMO that comes out. So i basically want every new game to run great for the longest possible time) (mainly building this machine for Age of Conan)

4) Could it survive an upgrade to lets say 2 9800GX2's in the future? (i plan on getting a XFX 780i motherboard w/ 2 pcie-16x 2.0 slots for $220. If the e8400 cant handle 2 of the cards w/o bottlenecking, then i should just get a cheaper motherboard and upgrade all together in a few years)

5) Could the q6600 handle 2 9800GX2's? If so, i should get the $220 motherboard w/ the 2.0 slots for future upgrades.

Since the only way i see actual GPU performance increases in the foreseeable future is through multi core GPU's then i either need to make sure my system can handle 2 of them now, or just build it cheaper w/ no upgrade capabilities and save the rest of the money for a new machine in the future.

So basically... should i build my computer now w/ room for upgrade in the future, or build it the best/cheapest i can now, and use the leftover to build a whole new one when its out of date?


More about : q6600 e8400 mmorpg

May 15, 2008 7:28:50 PM

stevediaman said:

after reading the new article that was posted,
What was the article that was posted?

May 15, 2008 7:43:36 PM

Q6600 is easily clocked to 3.0 by switching the FSB from 266 to 333. With DDR2-800 or 1066, you can get to 3.2, 3.4 or 3.6 with a decent cooler and if you know a little about tweaking a board. Sure, you could hit higher speeds with an e8400, but are 200-400 extra mhz really going to make a huge difference with your 3-8 fps increase? Either way, you will reach a point that the human eyes won't be able to tell the difference. I guess it depends...it went from ATI vs. Intel to dual vs. quad wars.
Related resources
May 15, 2008 8:13:35 PM

Sadly there is no real difference from a dual core to a quad on the MMO's of choice for now, and a 7600GT will play most MMO's with no issues either.

1) the Q6600 can go over 3.0GHz on air (some higher, some lower)
2) don't know, I use a Phenom 9850 (for FPS, RPG, MMO's, and RTS)
3) see above
4) see above
5) absolutely

If you are just playing MMORPG's (or the like) I'd go for midrange, but fast HDD, RAM, and Connection speed (these are the biggest issues). So a single card solution would serve well. (I'm using a BFG 8800GTS 512 G92)
May 15, 2008 8:55:15 PM

For AoC there is no GPU solution that will allow you to play maxed out at high res. Well you could do it but FPS will drop below 20 rather frequently. SLI support and DX10 has been hit or miss to date. The 7600GT mention above on low setting with 17" will keep you around 30 FPS. Need to know what res you plan on running.

Personal I would never recommend multi card solution as they are frequently not very efficient. I would get the best single card you can afford.

As for the CPU either would work. AoC is not currently taking advantage of multi cores. I would caution you that Funcom has track record of poor releases. I have played in PvP weekend and the open beta, the game is rather unstable will likely have a very rocky start.

I averaged 40-20FPS at 1900x1200 at medium setting with a Q6600 OC to 3.6Ghz, 8GB Ram, 8800GTX and Vista 64 SP1.

See ya on the battlefield.
May 15, 2008 9:22:57 PM

Im agreeing with byDesign, either core is going to handle the dual card soltuion, but your probably going to be disappointed in it. Im not sure what random core issues your talking about with the Q6600 mine works great, and havent read any complaints about the core itself. If your building for a long term use computer I would think you would be better served by waiting until the new cpu format comes out late fall, and then build then, also the prices of new hardware will have come down by then. But like i say, there is no such thing as future proof, its a oxymoron. If you have to upgrade anything, get a better card now, with the mindset of upgrading the whole shebang in the future.
May 15, 2008 9:40:36 PM

Not sure on the whole AoC SLI issue. Im in the closed AoC beta. I run @ 1680x1050 with a single 8800 GTX at 30 FPS constant, with graphics maxxed. Good enough for PvE, maybe not for PvP, time will tell.

Just food for thought....

On the side note, I most likely will be moving to a 28" monitor with 1900x1200 resolution this fall, so at that point SLI or Xfire will be mandantory for good frame rates.
May 15, 2008 10:59:02 PM

Kaldor said:
Not sure on the whole AoC SLI issue. Im in the closed AoC beta. I run @ 1680x1050 with a single 8800 GTX at 30 FPS constant, with graphics maxxed. Good enough for PvE, maybe not for PvP, time will tell.

Just food for thought....

On the side note, I most likely will be moving to a 28" monitor with 1900x1200 resolution this fall, so at that point SLI or Xfire will be mandantory for good frame rates.


Quick Hijack,

I just got the Hanns G 28" not sure if that's what you're looking but if you get one it's a pain to calibrate without a calibration tool with a sensor. Once calibrated it's a great gaming monitor but it will never be for serious graphics work. Also by fall we should have the first real DX10 cards or least cards that should be able to handle these games at 1900x1200.
May 16, 2008 3:52:05 AM

i play at 1440x900 on a 22" monitor. Any smaller and i gotta squint to read text.

The only other option right now, ie. best GPU i can afford, is a 9800GX2... well its $100 more than the price im paying for 2 8800gts OC's ($420) (really isnt a performance increase tho, and its cheaper.)

yea for a $1600 build i think the q6600 will be fine. I do probably need to get the upgrade ideas out of my head tho. This is my first real build in 5 years and it seems alota **** changed.

this is what im buildin:

Q6600 - $220
XFX 780i Motherboard - $220
MSI 8800GTS 512 MB x2 - $420
SB 7200.11 500gig HD - $100
COOLER MASTER RC-690 Case - $85
Samsung 20x DvD Burner - $35
PC P&C Silencer 750w - $120
OCZ 4gig (2x 2 gig) SLI ram - $69
Xigmatek Rifle CPU Cooler - $37
3x scythe Case Fans - $42
Arctic Silver 5 - $6
Vista 64-bit - $95

yea... so... i should just completely forget about upgrading huh? and just rebuild in 3-4 years?

by then the nvida 12 series 16 way SLI probably be out w/ the 12 core intel's and the micro 20ter hard-drives... w/ 128 bit windows.... i gotta stop thinking too far ahead lol
May 16, 2008 3:23:32 PM

Whats the native resolution on your monitor Steve? Probably 1680x1050 unless Ive missed my guess. If you arent running an LCD monitor in native res it quite frankly, looks like s__t. The text will be fuzzy, and will actually be harder to read.

Parts list looks solid. My only gripe is the quad CPU. Personally Id run a 8400 over the 6600, UNLESS you have software that will truly take full advantage of the quad. If your playing games primarily, chances are your better with a 8400 with a decent overclock. Should be easy to do with the cooler you have selected.

ByDesign, shot you a PM about the 28" Hanns G. No need to hijack Steves thread.
May 16, 2008 4:32:39 PM

do you mean that games would look worse at 1440x900 on a LCD screen w/ a native res of 1680x1050? or just text?

i have been noticing a little bit of blurriness in games (keep games and desktop to 1440x900)

text looks perfect for me at 1440x900, only thing is at the max res its way too small to read.

this is my monitor:

http://www.viewsonic.com/products/lcddisplays/xseries/vx2255wmb/

yea i just tried changing the res to 1680x1050... the text just looks way too thin and stringy to me

also about the q6600vs the e8400. i dont mind spending the extra $20 for the q6600. my only real question is if the e8400 will perform better. if it does, by how much?

im told the difference in overclocking on air for them is within 3-400mhz... thats really splittin hairs in my opinion. i guess it comes down to simple math for me, 4 cores at lets say 3.2 vs 2 cores at 3.6 granted, the e8400 will run slightly better for games, but in the long run i think the q6600 will do me better.

unless there is a significant performance increase playing MMO's w/ the e8400, i think im going to stick w/ the quad.
May 16, 2008 5:17:09 PM

I run a 22" Viewsonic LCD as well. Viewsonic makes nice stuff. I own a 19" as well from them.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... <--- mine
1680x1050 is the native resolution for your monitor. Id give it a shot in games and see if your quality improves. As far as text goes, its hard to say. I would increase the text size in your browser and leave the resolution at 1680x1050. Im not sure what steps you could take in case of a Word doc.

As far as the processor thing goes. The 6600 runs at 2.4 stock or 600 per core. The 8400 runs at 3.0 stock or 1.5 per core. If the program you are using only uses 1 core, the dual core will win just on pure clock speed as it being utilized more efficiently, 1500 mhz (dual) > 600 mhz (quad). If the program uses 2 cores, its 3000 mhz vs 1200 mhz. Where it gets tricky is when more than 2 cores are being used. At that point the quad may be faster but there is a very very short list of games that take full advantage of quad core processors, so its a moot point in my eyes. The 8400 uses a smaller fab which in reality should give you more OCing headroom as well. 8400 is 20 bucks cheaper too.

I have pretty much proven this to a friend. We both run the same video card, he has 4 gigs of ram, I have 2, I have a 680i mobo, he has a x38, I have a core 2 duo 6300 at 3.2, he has a core 2 quad 6600 at 3.2. I can consistently out FPS him as long I dont need more than 2 cores.

May 16, 2008 5:22:04 PM

There isnt a significant diffrence there, everyone is just worried about being able to brag that they are overclocked higher then other folks, or want to have a insanely high 3dmark score. And i agree with your train of thought, even if you were able to achieve the 4.4 gigs with a e8400, your talking a combined horse power of 8.8gigs. With a quad were talking 14.4 gigs with a oc of 3.6 gigs total horse power. Right now not alot is taking advantage of the extra cores, but when they do, the quad will rear its ugly head, plus it will give you another year or so of life over a dual core when multithreading comes online.
May 16, 2008 5:23:42 PM

Kaldor said:
I run a 22" Viewsonic LCD as well. Viewsonic makes nice stuff. I own a 19" as well from them.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... <--- mine
1680x1050 is the native resolution for your monitor. Id give it a shot in games and see if your quality improves. As far as text goes, its hard to say. I would increase the text size in your browser and leave the resolution at 1680x1050. Im not sure what steps you could take in case of a Word doc.

As far as the processor thing goes. The 6600 runs at 2.4 stock or 600 per core. The 8400 runs at 3.0 stock or 1.5 per core. If the program you are using only uses 1 core, the dual core will win just on pure clock speed as it being utilized more efficiently, 1500 mhz (dual) > 600 mhz (quad). If the program uses 2 cores, its 3000 mhz vs 1200 mhz. Where it gets tricky is when more than 2 cores are being used. At that point the quad may be faster but there is a very very short list of games that take full advantage of quad core processors, so its a moot point in my eyes. The 8400 uses a smaller fab which in reality should give you more OCing headroom as well. 8400 is 20 bucks cheaper too.

I have pretty much proven this to a friend. We both run the same video card, he has 4 gigs of ram, I have 2, I have a 680i mobo, he has a x38, I have a core 2 duo 6300 at 3.2, he has a core 2 quad 6600 at 3.2. I can consistently out FPS him as long I dont need more than 2 cores.


Are you 2 running the same videocard?
May 16, 2008 5:25:28 PM

then i guess, the only problem i have w/ the e8400 vs the q6600, is which one will last me the longest time w/o needing to upgrade...

i like to build 1 good solid machine that lasts me 3-4 years (my current one ive had since 03. i dont like to upgrade. i dont like to build new machines.

ive always heard the debate w/ the 2 core vs the 4 cores, but ive never heard it like uve described. does it really work that way? in single core cames, ill only get 600mhz out of a quad core? i find this hard to believe.
May 16, 2008 5:27:29 PM

so is it 2.4 gig per core? or is it the 2.4 split between the 4 cores? so far 2 people in this thread stated 2 completely different explanations about how the multi core processors work

i always thought it was 2.4 per core, and only 1 or 2 were used in each game. the benefit right now to a quad is i can do 20 more things at a time vs a dual, and to achieve this level of multi tasking i need to sacrifice a bit of processor speed per core...

if what i said is true, then my only concern is if a q6600 will ever bottleneck my dual 8800gts's, or possible future upgrades to dual 9800GX2's. can a e8400 even run dual 9800GX2's at 100%?
May 16, 2008 5:38:04 PM

It is 2.4 gigs per core, with 4 cores being the total. And no, the quad will not bottleneck your cards, far from it, you have a better chance of getting a bottleneck with a dual core, although the e8400 will not bottle neck 2 cards also.
May 16, 2008 5:46:38 PM

blacksci said:
Are you 2 running the same videocard?


Yes, EVGA 8800 GTX. My specs are listed under my name to the left, and not the AMD machine, :kaola:  My buddy uses a Gigabyte board, Kingston ram and PCP&C PSU. Both machines even use a 500 gig Seagate HD. Both machines are built with quality parts and run XP Pro SP2.

stevediaman said:
then i guess, the only problem i have w/ the e8400 vs the q6600, is which one will last me the longest time w/o needing to upgrade...

i like to build 1 good solid machine that lasts me 3-4 years (my current one ive had since 03. i dont like to upgrade. i dont like to build new machines.

ive always heard the debate w/ the 2 core vs the 4 cores, but ive never heard it like uve described. does it really work that way? in single core cames, ill only get 600mhz out of a quad core? i find this hard to believe.


Thats pretty much the gist of it. Ive seen it happen in person, where a program will only use 1 or 2 cores. My buddy will have 2 out of 4 cores sitting idle, while both of mine will be in use.

I am almost dead certain that a 2.4 quad is running 4 cores at 600 mhz per core. I could be wrong, and it wouldn't be the first time.

As far as longevity, buy the dual now, it will last you 3 years. And if it ever does get to a point where you have a real use for a quad, update at that point, and sell/reuse the dual core. Remember, PC hardware only goes down in price over time. This is one of the reasons when I build a PC for a friend I buy e2160s, overclock them, and save them a bunch of coin. They look at the processor and say, "Its only a 1.8 ghz processor." I tell them to STFU, and then let them use it after I have it together. overclocked and running smooth. I have yet to have one complaint. The update option is always there, as Im always careful to mate a decent mobo that will give them an upgrade path, whether they may need a faster cpu, and better video card, or even SLI/Xfire at some point. The objective for me is keep the initial price down, but give them an upgrade path over the next 2 years.

Quad core cpu's are one of the most over sold ideas out there. Until the software catches up, its pointless.
May 16, 2008 5:55:33 PM

Your thinking playstation, which uses several cores to get a final core clock of 3.2 gigs. I have the quad, its 2.4 on each core, and the dual core, as a earlier post said, is only going to give you 3 to 5 frames per second over a quad, and your multitasking ability goes down hill also. Plus were on the verge of seeing games that will be coming out with multithreading, and i think its going to happen alot sooner then 2 to 3 years everyone like to quote. As a side note, ive gone back 2 years in posts and seen this same time frame quoted back in 06.
May 16, 2008 5:57:28 PM

stevediaman said:
so is it 2.4 gig per core? or is it the 2.4 split between the 4 cores? so far 2 people in this thread stated 2 completely different explanations about how the multi core processors work

i always thought it was 2.4 per core, and only 1 or 2 were used in each game. the benefit right now to a quad is i can do 20 more things at a time vs a dual, and to achieve this level of multi tasking i need to sacrifice a bit of processor speed per core...

if what i said is true, then my only concern is if a q6600 will ever bottleneck my dual 8800gts's, or possible future upgrades to dual 9800GX2's. can a e8400 even run dual 9800GX2's at 100%?


8400 will push the GX2's at full speed. But at this point in time, a GX2 is a bad card to buy with new hardware from ATI and Nvidia on the horizon. If you never go above 1680X1050, I dont even think you need SLI honestly. The only game that puts up a fight against my 8800 GTX at 1680x1050 is Crysis, and I just ran it to benchmark. The new hardware coming out should be at least 1/2 again as powerful as what is currently available, including the X2 cards from ATI or Nvidia. Myself, I prefer try to keep things the least complicated as possible. In other words, until you hit 1900x1200 resolution, SLI and Xfire are a waste.
May 16, 2008 6:09:00 PM

blacksci said:
Your thinking playstation, which uses several cores to get a final core clock of 3.2 gigs. I have the quad, its 2.4 on each core, and the dual core, as a earlier post said, is only going to give you 3 to 5 frames per second over a quad, and your multitasking ability goes down hill also. Plus were on the verge of seeing games that will be coming out with multithreading, and i think its going to happen alot sooner then 2 to 3 years everyone like to quote. As a side note, ive gone back 2 years in posts and seen this same time frame quoted back in 06.


If this is the case, I stand corrected. The dual core does still hold the advantage depending largely on the application though. The fact here is though, I doubt you'll see it as fast as everyone would like, mulithreaded apps will not be coming that quickly. Software is largely driven by Joe Consumer which is running a computer he bought at a retail store for $500 and the public sector like schools and businesses, who are buying large amounts of PCs when they upgrade and do what they can to keep the price down, ei if they axe the quad core and save $20 a machine they do it. Trust me, I work for the State of WI doing 1st and 2nd level tech support on software, workstations, and servers. The almighty dollar rules the day, and gamers are a small portion of the computer industry.
May 16, 2008 6:12:41 PM

Lol, well only time will tell if multithreading is going to come out sooner or later, but with the large amount of people migrating to the power of quads, it is only a matter of time.
May 16, 2008 6:23:58 PM

I wish multithreading worked as well as everyone thinks it works. Id switch to a quad in a heartbeat at that point.

The thing is is that people aren't migrating to quads in droves. They buy the cheapest thing they can, which is a dual core right now, use it for 2-3 years, throw it away, then buy another. Where as power users and gamers will keep a PC running 5 or more years if it suits their needs. I have a Athlon XP 2800 Barton that I use to surf the internet, chat, and run torrents on which is a great example.
May 16, 2008 6:53:01 PM

yea ill stick w/ the quad simply because it will last me longer... period... dont care if multi core games come out in 5 years, as long as i can get 100% out of the q6600 eventually. in the meantime it will let me run alot more on my machine w/o having to worry about little things that are going to lag me.

if i lets say got a e8400 now, in 2 years ill throw it away for a new 6 core processor or w/e that costs 5x what a quad does, which again will have no applications to use their full potential?

or will i use the e8400 now, and throw it away and get a quad when the multi core applications come out?

im trying to skip a step here.

Kaldor, i appreciate your input, but please keep in mind, i have no intention of upgrading processors and motherboards for anything new, untill i absolutely need to because the machine im building just wont cut it anymore. i dont really have the money to be throwing it around here and there just to get the new latest stuff.

2-3 years of use isnt enough for me, for the money im spending. im thinking more 4-5 like the machine im running now.

i plan on skipping the new set of intels coming out all together. (unless by the time they become affordable, and i see that my new machine just wont cut it anymore)

If i ever get to the point where i curse the day i got a q6600 over a e8400 because i needed that extra 400mhz... someone shoot me please.

im spending $420 on 2 8800gts oc's... its really not a bad price. Even at 1680x1050 u get a 20-25% performance increase in. Thats no worse than a 9800GX2 (its just $100 less atm).

Also, i am waiting for the new ATI cards to come out in the end of the month to drop my 8800gts prices a little bit before i buy.

im just worried about the q6600 bottlenecking in the future (2-4 years from now) since i probably wont take it past 3.2-3.6
May 16, 2008 7:29:53 PM



There are already many multi-threading programs already out there. They've been around a long time in the business and scientific software for example.
Still the single threaded programs and games like Team Fortress 2 (and WoW, CS:S) are still in the majority.
That's not likely to change much even as new versions of programs come out. It can be expensive to modify programs and retrain staff in multithreading programming. The usual thinking is "My program runs fine on one core".
The OS doesnt determine which core(s) a program will run on - it's up to the software to be aware and use multiple cores.

Even with overclocking, quads and powerful video cards (8800GTX, 1152x864 res, default quality settings in the chart below)
when a game's video quality settings and resolution gets cranked up the peformance of the CPUs doesnt directly translate
into higher performance as another part of the system becomes a bottleneck.



Of course every game is different. Even in the same game different scenes and levels, different mix of action by players and/or AI sprites, etc changes the dynamics of the games performance. Still its nice to think an average new PC can hang in there with a guy spending $1500 on the CPU alone.

In non-gaming multi-tasking the quad vs dual question seems to be more straight foward - but of course it isnt.
Any time you have a "man in the middle" situation with your software and PC its more likely than not your PC is waiting on you to move a mouse, read a screen, type some text, decide what to do next, etc. Give two people the identical multiple tasks, give one a dual core and another a quad and the first one done will be the one who types faster, reads more quickly or knows the software better.

The upshot of this whole post is - Relax! It's not a mistake to choose either one.




May 16, 2008 8:03:05 PM

You have a good handle on the idea Steve. You think along the ideas I do as well, except I take a similar route. I do small incremental cheap upgrades, where as you want to be solid for a few years. The quad will be better over the course of 5 years. Myself, if I could start over, Id start with a e2160 OCed to 3.0 ghz + and be right there and save $150 in the short term, then change to a socket 775 quad core when the prices drop. But that option wasn't there when I built my current box 14 months ago. Im very price vs performance oriented because overall, the processor really has the least amount of influence on the overall performance of the machine as Toms just proved in a review this week. I just havent changed to a quad because I dont see the point and Im not gaining enough to make the jump. I understand not wanted to screw with upgrades. I ran a Athlon XP 2800 Barton for a long time because I couldnt justify a small performance increase for new hardware and also couldnt justify laying out a thousand dollars. So I bumped to 2 gigs of ram and put a new video card in over the course of 6 years on my last machine. I cant complain about that. I figure 3 years service on a single video card, maybe more for SLI. Proccessors stay a little more long term for me though, but I will replace if I can get a sizable gain for cheap.

Right now I am looking to build another PC. My old one will get shuffled down to my girlfriend who also plays DAOC, Lotro, and plans to play AoC and Warhammer with me. Im hoping ATI can pull the rabbit out of the hat and build a product that is truly worthwhile and puts Nvidia in their place, ala 9700 Pro release. At that point Ill invest in a Intel chipset, and set up Xfire if I update to a larger monitor as planned. If the new ATI hardware doesnt pan out, Ill invest in SLI and buy a couple of Nvidia cards.
May 16, 2008 8:41:25 PM

really appreciate the input everyone. basically my questions are answered.

q6600= long term choice

any dual core = cheaper/short term solution

as long as the q6600 gets the full performance out of my video cards, im happy. Thats really why this thread was started. not to start a debate, but to make sure i wont bottleneck the 8800gts oc's im going to get, and the possible 9 and 10 dual core nvidia series of tomorrow.

im just afraid that in 2-3 years when the 10 series is out, and ill want to get 2 in SLI (4 way sli ie 2 core per card), my processor will bottleneck them and ill have to scrap everything i have all together.

it doesnt look that way tho, so i should be ok
!