An $850 Intel Dual Core or an AMD Quad Core?

I thought I was completely set on getting an AMD system until I saw the Gigabyte EP45 board on ZipZoomFly for $85 with the rebate. That opened up the possibility of getting an Intel system for me. However it was still a bit more than what I was planning so if I was seriously considering spending the extra money there, I had to consider spending extra money on an AMD system to compare it with. I've come up with the following options. What are the pro's and con's of each? I picked the Arctic Cooling CPU Coolers because they are basically the same for each chipset. I may or may not get that cooler.

Intel 8400 Build

99.99 - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-DS3La Intel P45($15 MiR)
http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10008669
88.50 - CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W ($20 MiR)
http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10006757
86.50 - CORSAIR TWIN2X4096-6400C4DHX 4GB PC2-6400 (DDR2-800)($35 MiR)
http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10007942
274.99 + 9.08 shipping = 284.07 (ZipZoomFly

189.99 - MSI R4850-512M Radeon HD 4850 512MB Free Rainbow 6 Vegas2 ($30 MiR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127370
99.99 - Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116488
74.99 - Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218
64.99 - mushkin 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 ($15 MiR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820146692
51.99 - Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042
26.99 - SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R DVD Burner with LightScribe
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151173
26.99 - ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835186134
5.99 - Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100007
644.88 + 13.85 shipping = 658.73 (NewEgg)

=$942.80
-$100.00 Mail In Rebates
=$842.80

or AMD Quad Core Build

189.99 - MSI R4850-512M Radeon HD 4850 512MB Free Rainbow 6 Vegas2 ($30 MiR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127370
159.00 - AMD Phenom 9950 2.6GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 2MB L3 Cache Socket AM2+ 140W Black Edition Processor - OEM
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819103285
99.99 - COOLER MASTER RC-690-KKA1-GP Black SECC/ ABS ATX Mid Tower Computer Case Real Power Pro 550W Power Supply($50 off in combo deal, orig 149.99)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811119142
99.99 - BIOSTAR TFORCE TA790GX A2+ AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813138128
99.99 - Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116488
74.99 - Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218
64.99 - mushkin 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 ($15 MiR)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820146692
26.99 - SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R DVD Burner with LightScribe
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151173
26.99 - ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 64 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835185125
5.99 - Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100007
848.91 + 47.66 shipping = 896.57

-$45.00 in Mail in Rebates
=$851.57
9 answers Last reply
More about intel dual core quad core
  1. Well intel build has awesome case....but for future I would go with amd build since you will be able to upgrade to am3 processor and not have to replace whole motherboard/ram.
  2. Here is a Phenom X4 9850 compared to the e8400 at stock.
    The Phenom is faster at stock. The e8400 is more overclockable though.
    Look at your uses of the computer.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/desktop-cpu-charts-q3-2008/compare,836.html?prod%5B2161%5D=on&prod%5B2185%5D=on
  3. I'm not sure if this is intended but your Intel build has 4GB Corsair RAM followed by 4GB Mushkin RAM. Didn't count if you added both in the final price though.
  4. Why compare an Intel dual core to an AMD quad?

    You will benefit from one or the other more, depending on your personal computing habits and usage.

    If you do not multi-task and tend to keep a minimal number of processes running, the chances are you will benefit more from a dual core today. In the future more apps and games will make use of more cores, but not in the next few months, certainly.

    If this is true but you like to play specific games that utilize quad cores, or you use other applications that are CPU intensive and are coded to use multi-core CPUs, quad cores are probably the best choice.

    If you multi-task and you tend to have a very full system tray, and use some apps designed for multi-core CPUs, you certainly need a quad core.

    Here is a very recent article comparing various quad core CPUs:
    http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core2quad-q9400.html
  5. Icy, you are correct. With all of my cutting and pasting to do matchups, I mixed up on the post and included both RAM's and no CPU. The correct listing is:

    99.99 - GIGABYTE GA-EP45-DS3La Intel P45($15 MiR)
    http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10008669
    88.50 - CORSAIR CMPSU-550VX 550W ($20 MiR)
    http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10006757
    86.50 - CORSAIR TWIN2X4096-6400C4DHX 4GB PC2-6400 (DDR2-800)($35 MiR)
    http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?ProductCode=10007942
    274.99 + 9.08 shipping = 284.07 (ZipZoomFly)

    189.99 - MSI R4850-512M Radeon HD 4850 512MB Free Rainbow 6 Vegas2 ($30 MiR)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16814127370
    164.99 - Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 Wolfdale 3.0GHz
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819115037
    99.99 - Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium SP1 64-bit
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16832116488
    74.99 - Western Digital Caviar SE16 WD6400AAKS 640GB
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136218
    54.95 - Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811129042
    26.99 - SAMSUNG Black 22X DVD+R DVD Burner with LightScribe
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827151173
    26.99 - ARCTIC COOLING Freezer 7 Pro 92mm CPU Cooler
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835186134
    5.99 - Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16835100007
    644.88 + 13.85 shipping = 658.73 (NewEgg)

    =$942.80
    -$100.00 Mail In Rebates
    =$842.80
  6. I don't get why you mix-matched so many parts.

    Let's Simplify this............

    Phenom Quad for $160 and Mobo for $100 = $260
    Everything Else can stay the Same.

    Intel Q8200 - $200 (w/free Case - Fleabay it)
    http://shop4.frys.com/product/5759332
    Mobo $100
    ===============================
    The case should be sellable on CraigsList for $40 easy.
    I like the cases you selected better, so use one of those than this one.

    http://xbitlabs.com/articles/cpu/display/core2quad-q9400.html

    Since the Phenom and Intel Quad system would be about the same price, the Intel seems like the obvious choice.

    Now, the Q6600 would have been my first choice, but the Q8200 is actually cheaper due to current sales.

    You could sub in a Q6600 instead of the Q8200 and not worry about selling the case and spend slightly more then the Phenom system but I know you are looking to save money.

    You could even keep the case since the Q8200 runs quite cool and does not need lots of cooling. Then get a modest PSU to put in it.
    Perhaps........
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817341012
  7. You could always get an Intel quad... The Q6600 will kill any Phenom that you put up against it, hands down.

    If you aren't up for overclocking, the Q8200 will be fine.

    Proximon is right: the dual vs. quad depends on what you will be using your system for. WIll you be doing a lot of multitasking/file conversion and video editing? A quad core will benefit you greatly.

    Are you primarily a gamer? The E8400 is the chip to buy.
  8. The Mushkin RAM is the better choice, as it runs on the JEDEC standard 1.8V.
    The Antec 300 does not provide separate airflow for the PSU. This makes the RC-690a better-cooling case.
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