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Need some advice on my next upgrade...

Last response: in Systems
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July 13, 2008 9:06:39 PM

Hey guys,

I recently took my XPS 410 apart and rebuilt it in a Thermaltake Armor (steel) case with the 25cm side fan. The guts and relevant accessories are as follows:

- Windows XP Pro 32-bit
- MSI P6N Diamond mobo
- Intel E6400 Core 2 Duo (2.13gHz) processor :( 
- 4gb of 1000mHz G.Skill RAM on two sticks
- MSI 8800GT 512mb
- 650w BFG power supply
- KDS 24" display, running at 1920x1200

I'm trying to figure out what my next logical step should be concerning the build's graphics and CPU. I'm guessing it'd be a better idea to grab a new CPU before I dive into SLI with the GTX 280s or quadSLI with the 9800GX2s, due to serious bottlenecking. I'm also wondering whether installing dual cards of either design will be too hot in my case.

I already know I'll be needing a PSU upgrade (looking at a Thermaltake 850w or 1000w modular).


So my main question is this: what processor (if any) should I put in this thing if I'm looking to move forward with the latest SLI hardware? Or should I just get a second 8800GT?


~FS

More about : advice upgrade

a b B Homebuilt system
July 13, 2008 9:29:52 PM

I would try overclocking the 6400 first. If your board isn't stable when trying to run the cpu fsb at 1333, try the "pin mod" trick with flat copper wire or conductive solution. The 1333 pin mod is listed doing a search on yahoo under "cpu pin mod". If your games are running well, you may do better saving for a complete nehalem upgrade in about 1 year.
a b B Homebuilt system
July 14, 2008 2:53:34 AM

Just add a second 8800GT. It will cost you much less than two GTX 280 or 9800GX2 and you won't need a new PSU either. You're better off waiting with further GPU upgrades until the 40nm cards are out (around March 2009, AFAIK).

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July 14, 2008 2:56:12 AM

aevm said:
Just add a second 8800GT. It will cost you much less than two GTX 280 or 9800GX2 and you won't need a new PSU either. You're better off waiting with further GPU upgrades until the 40nm cards are out (around March 2009, AFAIK).

Yep, 8800gt sli still outperform any single gpu in existance, including gtx280 and 4870.
July 14, 2008 6:06:15 PM

Alrighty.

As for the processor, which would be better: the dual core E8500 Wolfdale 3.16mHz, or the Q9450 Yorkfield @ 2.66? The latter has a slower speed, but double the size of the E8500's 6mb L2 cache. Also, will the 45nm Q9450 even work in my mobo?


~FS
a b B Homebuilt system
July 14, 2008 6:15:33 PM

I understand that the Q9450 won't work, and the E8400 will work after a BIOS update. Just guessing the E8500 will also work with that BIOS update, but I may be wrong. Risky...

I'd get an E8400. The E8500 is $80 more and not that much faster anyway.


July 14, 2008 11:24:37 PM

aevm said:
I understand that the Q9450 won't work, and the E8400 will work after a BIOS update. Just guessing the E8500 will also work with that BIOS update, but I may be wrong. Risky...

I'd get an E8400. The E8500 is $80 more and not that much faster anyway.

Actually, 680i can run 45nm quad after a bios update. It's shaky though, and definately not recommended. 680i does support 65nm quad (q6600/6700) natively, but it overclocks badly. Most people get only 2.8-3.2ghz for q6600 on 680i, compared to the more typical 3.6-4ghz. After all, what is a q6600 without oc? If you have to have sli, get 780i instead.
a b B Homebuilt system
July 15, 2008 12:00:52 AM

I think he's got the P6N already, and needs a newer CPU. Come to think of it, a Q6600 2.8 GHz wouldn't be bad at all.
July 15, 2008 12:22:15 AM

aevm said:
I think he's got the P6N already, and needs a newer CPU. Come to think of it, a Q6600 2.8 GHz wouldn't be bad at all.

I guess that depends on what you use it for. But I'd think 2.8ghz is pretty lacking. :p 
!