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Motherboard to go with Q6600 & EVGA Geforce 8800 GTX

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March 26, 2009 4:12:10 AM

Heya guys, great website you have going. I need some recommendations on what to choose. My current bottleneck seems to be my CPU: Overclocked it to 2.8 but games still seem to cry and push CPU usage to 100%


My Current setup is:

This is the stuff that I'm thinking of replacing:
Asus P5N32-SLI SE Deluxe
Intel Core 2 Duo 6600 2.4 GHz -> From what I understand the best bang for my buck would be: Core 2 Quad Q6600 8 MB and would like to know if it's compatible with my GPU/Ram if placed in a motherboard.


This is the stuff that I would like to keep in my setup (Mainly due to money issues)
8gb Corsair TWIN2X 6400 DDR2, 4096MB CL5
EVGA Geforce 8800 GTX 768 MB

Cheers for my reading my post and if you need anymore information I'll be glad to deliver!
a b V Motherboard
March 26, 2009 11:07:05 AM

Welcome to the forums!

I would recommend first upgrading the motherboard to a ASUS or Gigabyte P45 based one and further overclocking your E6600.
You should have no issues taking it to 3.2ghz and can probably push it to 3.6Ghz with a little work.
If, after pushing your E6600 to the limits, you still feel your system is to slow, either an overclocked Q6600 or Q9550 would be a good upgrade option.

As long as you purchase a DDR2 P45 motherboard (nearly all of them are), you will have no issues reusing your other components.
March 26, 2009 12:49:02 PM

Thank you for the welcome.

Okay I'll be hunting them a P45 motherboard and linking it here later for approval. I'm seriously hooked on trying out the Q6600 due to me being an avid gamer - but I also heard that some games don't make use of the quad cores?

Would you recommend me any cooling if I'm just going for the safe 3.2 GHz, as I'm not very keen nor skilled in overclocking.

Cheers for the answers.

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a b V Motherboard
March 26, 2009 1:08:22 PM

At the moment, very few games can take advantage of a quad core CPU.
It can still give you a boost in performance, however, if you have a lot of background tasks running (they can be offload onto the idle cores).
You will get a much larger boost in performance from upping the clock speed.

Considering the E6600 and Q6600 are exactly the same other than the number of cores, do not expect a big performance boost when running them at the same speeds.
I am pretty sure you will be happy with just the performance boost of overclocking your current CPU.
If not, you can always grab a Q6600 or Q9550/9650 later on and give it a healthy overclock.

You should be able to handle 3Ghz with out any issues on the stock Hs.
3.2Ghz will be pushing the thermal limit but it is possible.
I would highly recommend upgrading to a new CPU cooler to ensure your maximum overclock.
You can locate a good list of CPU coolers over at FrostyTech.

Also, take a look at the C2 Overclocking Sticky.
It will give you a comprehensive overview on how to maximise your overclock.
March 28, 2009 1:33:26 AM

So with a new motherboard I could keep my old 2.4 GHz and obtain a 3.2 GHz with proper cooling. Sounds amazing considering I was already thinking of changing my motherboard due to faulty USB ports.

Does my current OC limit at 2.88 GHZ lie with my current motherboard (The P5N32-SLI SE Deluxe)? Or am I misunderstanding the basic concept of OC'ing? From what I understand the P45 would give me better options for OC'ing, but beyond is there anything I should look for in my Motherboard. I've taken a look at ASUS P5Q PRO and a Gigabyte GA-G33-DS3R. My first impressions is that the ASUS is better and with more features, while Gigabyte is slightly cheaper. I just looked at the cheapest P45 Motherboards with the highest reviews.

ASUS has FSB 1600 mhz and Gigabyte has 1333 mhz will this make a large difference?

Thanks a lot for the answers!
a b V Motherboard
March 30, 2009 10:15:57 AM

Yes, with a new motherboard and proper cooling, you should have no trouble hitting 3.2Ghz.
With a little luck, you may even be able to push it to 3.4-3.6Ghz.

Most likely, your motherboard is limiting your overclock.
Nvidia chipsets are known to be weak overclockers, among other things, any your nForce 4 chipset is a quite old one.

Of the two motherboards you are considering, the ASUS P5Q Pro is, by far, the best option.
It runs a newer P45 chipset, vs the last generations low end G33 on the Gigabyte board, offers a much better feature set and much better overclocking.
March 30, 2009 4:13:12 PM

Thank you outlw6669! You've been a great help and you certainly live up to the Honorary Poster title. Gonna go pick up the P5Q PRO with a Xigmatek HDT-S1284.
!