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[AM2+ X4 940, DDR2] vs [X3 720, DDR3] vs [2 Duo E8500, DDR2]

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May 2, 2009 12:50:33 PM

Hello, I am kind of stuck between three set ups, not beeing able to chose one of them. All the set ups have these components in common:

- XFX GeForce GTX 260 896MB
- Silver Power PSU, 600W
- NorthQ 3580 Water Cooling Kit

And here are the different set ups (listed CPU, ram, MB):

Phenom Quad:
- AMD Phenom II X4 940 Black Edition 125W, AM2+, 8MB Cache, 3,0Ghz
- Kingston DDR2 HyperX PC8500 4GB KITx2 Kit 2x matched HyperX 2GB DDR2 CL5 (1066Mhz)
- MSI KA790GX, Socket-AM2+ AMD 790GX+SB750, ATX, DDR2, PCI-Ex(2.0)x16

Phenom Tripple:
- AMD Phenom™ II X3 720 Black Edition Triple Core, 2,8Ghz, AM3, 95W, Boxed
- OCZ Gold DDR3 1333MHz 4GB KIT, 2xDDR3 2GB, CL9-9-9-26
- MSI 790GX-G65, 790GX+SB750, Socket-AM3 DDR3, ATX, 2xPCI-Ex(2.0)x16, GbLan, HDMI, DVI

Core 2 Duo:
- Intel Core™ 2 Duo E8500 3.16GHz, Socket LGA775, 6MB, 1333Mhz, BOXED w/fan
- Kingston DDR2 HyperX PC8500 4GB KITx2 Kit 2x matched HyperX 2GB DDR2 CL5
- Asus P5Q SE, P45, Socket-775, DDR2, ATX, GbLAN, ICH10, PCI-Ex(2.0)16

Price isn't an issue between these set ups, because they are roughly the same. But what of these set ups will provide the best overall performance? How big improvement is the DDR3 ram over the DDR2? That's what I can't decide. :p 

Thanks.
a b à CPUs
May 2, 2009 4:27:53 PM

Performance wise, You won't see alot of difference between the three setups either.

Personally, I would take the 720BE AM3 setup. That's just me.
May 2, 2009 4:54:05 PM

Personally I am leaning towards the 720BE AM3 myself, mostly because it's AM3 and has DDR3, simpler to upgrade in the future, and the ram limit is 16gb, so as time passes I can just smash more into it, and AM3 sockets will probably last longer than AM2+.

So would it be smart to go with the AM3 now, based on the fact that it will be more upgrade friendly?
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May 2, 2009 6:26:06 PM

Personally I remember 939 and in fact AM2(no bloody +). Let an AMD socket mature before you accept it.
May 2, 2009 6:56:54 PM

How can you make decissions before you know what he needs the system for?

For gaming X3 otherwise X4
a b à CPUs
May 2, 2009 7:52:16 PM

I dont see any reason why you wouldnt go X4 940be. Have you considered the 955be, or would that be over your price range?
May 2, 2009 8:08:57 PM

He's the one who desides. We offer opinions. Which he should give just as much credibility to as he does the reviews on Newegg.
May 2, 2009 8:17:45 PM

I think we beat newegg... but yeah. I'd go with the 955BE first, than the 720BE if it's out of his price-range.
May 2, 2009 8:32:09 PM

Okay, that was an unfair generalization. A 955 would be well within the price range if he would lose the water.
a c 203 à CPUs
May 2, 2009 9:09:37 PM

hermith said:
Personally I am leaning towards the 720BE AM3 myself
You have good instincts. +1
May 3, 2009 12:35:01 AM

If I lost the water cooling, which is 60 euro (every priced here is based on the Norwegian prices I will be able to buy them for, if 1 euro equals 10 Norwegian kroner) I'd still be another water cooling short of the 955BE. Which is why (on my budget) that I can only have AM3 if I go for the 720BE, because that takes 50 euro of the CPU cost, but adds about 50 euro to the MB cost. So a 955BE and a AM3 MB would raise the total cost about 100 euro.

Which is why I'm kind of leaning towards the AM3/720 BE set up at the moment, so a year or so from now, I can upgrade with a better processor, same socket, and maybe add some ram and another GFX card (as the AM3 mb have 2x 16x PCI-e).

As for what the PC will be used for, to say it short; everything.
May 3, 2009 12:58:59 AM

If you can't work the 955 into your budget, go for the 720BE.
May 3, 2009 11:32:58 AM

Quote:
No I7 system? You scared of having the best? :) 


i7 would violently rape my budget amazingly hard. And I'm in no need of the best.
May 3, 2009 11:37:49 AM

Quote:
No I7 system? You scared of having the best? :) 


this comes from the person who made the price difference between i7 and P2 thread and said it was only $36 while using top-end components for amd and bottom end for i7.
May 3, 2009 12:12:06 PM

Back on topic, I see where you are going with your budget and am completely behind the 720 idea. I'm just not clear why water has to be in the mix at all. I'm at 32c right now because I'm ripping Rocky Horror directors cut to MKV. It just seems a bit superfluous.
May 3, 2009 12:26:21 PM

The water thing isn't really necessary, but it's mostly because of that a decent 3rd party fan will cost about 40 euro, and this is only 20 euros more expensive, and for that money I get alot quieter CPU cooling.

But based on instincts and replies in this thread it seems like it's going to be the 720BE AM3 set up. Which should be a decicion I'll be quite happy about in the future when I only have to buy a new processor and some new ram.
May 3, 2009 4:56:06 PM

No, it's comparable to AMDs midrange $120 motherboards.
May 3, 2009 6:12:29 PM

Put the phenom II x4 quad on the x3 setup
May 3, 2009 6:39:43 PM

But that requires me to go for the 955 Phenom Quad, the 940BE wont work together with DDR3 on a AM3/AM2+ mb.
May 3, 2009 11:13:19 PM

Exactly. Just get the 720.
May 3, 2009 11:35:11 PM

Alright. Thanks for all the replies! It helped me a long way in finally deciding what set up I'll go with. Not a easy thing deciding, and I'm a guy that if I'm not entirely happy with what I bought I can loose sleep over it. So this is the final set up:

- AMD Phenom™ II X3 720 Black Edition Triple Core, 2,8Ghz, AM3, 95W, Boxed
- XFX Radeon HD 4870 1GB "xXx" GDDR5 PCI-Express 2.0, 2xDVI-I, HDMI, HDCP, 775/3800MHz
- MSI 790GX-G65, 790GX+SB750, Socket-AM3 DDR3, ATX, 2xPCI-Ex(2.0)x16, GbLan, HDMI, DVI
- OCZ Gold DDR3 1333MHz 4GB KIT, 2xDDR3 2GB, CL9-9-9-26
- Silver Power PSU, 600W 120mm fan + SeaSonic 6P PCI-E to 8P PCI-E adapter
- NorthQ 3580 Water Cooling Kit Socket 1366/775/478/754/939/940/AM2/AM2+/AM3

Total cost is:
6300 NOK (645 GBP, 725 EUR)

I found it kind of strange noone suggested the Core2Duo E8500 though. Guess my feeling was right all along!
May 4, 2009 12:43:49 AM

Because the C2D is slower, on a dead upgrade path, and slightly more expensive.
May 4, 2009 8:32:23 AM

hermith said:
But that requires me to go for the 955 Phenom Quad, the 940BE wont work together with DDR3 on a AM3/AM2+ mb.

Oh i didnt know that then use the 720 setup
May 4, 2009 11:10:22 AM

Excellent choices. Let us know OC results. I'm very interested in how MSI boards do with unlocking.
!