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Q6600 DIED - Recommended Upgrade

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May 4, 2009 8:52:56 PM

My Q6600 and MSI P7N SLI Platinum motherboard decided to die in a great big ball of smoke... okay the smoke was only a little puff but it killed my processor (checked it on another machine) and motherboard (not willing to check it out with another processor!!). I'm now in the process of deciding what to upgrade to... Logical choice to me would be Core i7 but cost may prohibit that. I don't have a budget per say but funds are limited. I'm open to suggestions but I do need a motherboard capable of SLI to support my two 9800GTX's. I don't need a power supply, currently have a Corsair CMPSU-850TX Watt ATX 12V Power Supply after my ABS Tagan ITZ Series ITZ900-V2 900W die just prior to by Q6600 and motherboard, which should've been my first sign that all hell was breaking loose!! :cry: 

Three Choices...

1.) Rebuild with a 775 processor and motherboard (Plus Side - Can keep my current memory, as long as don't upgrade to a Nvidia 790 chipset... Down side - Not current socket and less future proof, but by no means obs. though)

2.) Rebuild with AM3 processor and motherboard (Plus Side - Can keep my current memory, depending on motherboard, More chance to upgrade down the road with new processors & is the lowest cost option... Down side - Not at the same level as Core i7 performance wise IMO).

3.) Rebuild with Core i7 processor and motherboard (Plus Side - Most Powerfull Processors out, most boards are SLI & Crossfire, which allows you to use the best card out no matter if ATI or Nvidia and more chance to upgrade down the road with new processors... Down side - COST... COST.... COST....)

My computer was :cry:  mainly used for gaming (Crysis, COD4, CODWaW, Turok, NFSUndercover... etc.) before it decided to die on me!!! :cry:  Any suggestions on parts to help me with my decision would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!!! :hello: 
May 4, 2009 9:06:34 PM

Since you want SLI, then go with the core i7 so won't have to get an nvidia chipset.
May 4, 2009 11:27:30 PM

I'm with orangegator here. Although its quite expensive, Core i7 is indisputably the best for multi-GPU computer.
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May 5, 2009 12:27:15 AM

Well if your funds are limited get the Phenom II X4 955 sence right now in gaming there really is no big difference between the Core i7 and any CPU. You are more GPU bound than any thing. You can alos clock the PII 955 at 3.8GHz with no voltage increase.
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May 5, 2009 12:58:23 AM

i7 SLi boards are ridiculously expensive.
May 5, 2009 1:20:06 AM

Bluescreendeath said:
i7 SLi boards are ridiculously expensive.


Most of Core i7's boards are SLI capable, with the lowest costing below $199. I wouldn't call that ridiculously expensive, considering that the only good Nvidia board for Core 2 family is 790i Ultra, which is well in the $250 range.
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May 5, 2009 1:29:42 AM

yomamafor1 said:
Most of Core i7's boards are SLI capable, with the lowest costing below $199. I wouldn't call that ridiculously expensive, considering that the only good Nvidia board for Core 2 family is 790i Ultra, which is well in the $250 range.


?? I've looked on newegg and most of them are only Xfire capable and not SLi capable. The SLi ones are over $250 at least.

As for Core2, 750i, 780i, 680i are all great Nvidia boards.
May 5, 2009 1:34:24 AM

I'd get an AM2+/AM3 board if you can't afford an i7. The one in my sig is doing nicely for me, and it seems silly to re-buy into 775. Naturally, i7 would be the best, and apparently you can bios-flash one of them into supporting SLi, not sure if I'd dare do that.
May 5, 2009 1:40:31 AM

I choose i7... its what I'm going for. ^.^
May 5, 2009 1:50:14 AM

people...he mostly games...NO NOTICABLE DIFFERENCE WITH I7 VS CORE2...so get the core2..or a phenom 2. they are cheaper, perform the same gaming wise...save some money.

now, i love the i7 but its called practicality people.
May 5, 2009 2:00:48 AM

He's running SLi.
May 5, 2009 2:03:25 AM

so...even the core2 doesnt really bottleneck sli...and he already doesnt like the idea of the cost of the i7.
May 5, 2009 2:16:29 AM

Alright,
smithereen said:
...get an AM2+/AM3 board if you can't afford an i7.



May 5, 2009 2:51:24 AM

Bluescreendeath said:
?? I've looked on newegg and most of them are only Xfire capable and not SLi capable. The SLi ones are over $250 at least.

As for Core2, 750i, 780i, 680i are all great Nvidia boards.


Gigabyte EX58-UD3, selling for $189, is SLI capable. Zotac X58SLI, selling for $194, is SLI capable. Asrock X58 Deluxe is SLI capable, up to 3-way. Foxconn Bloodrage is SLI capable, up to 3-way, is selling for $234. The list goes on and on.

750i, 780i, and 680i are NOT great Nvidia boards. All three chipsets suffer from massive system instability, excessive heat, and inability to overclock. Some of the users also complained about having their OS boot sector crippled.

In short, if you want a Nvidia board for Core 2s, go with 790i Ultra.
May 5, 2009 2:54:18 AM

eagles453809 said:
so...even the core2 doesnt really bottleneck sli...and he already doesnt like the idea of the cost of the i7.

Yet Nvidia chipset for Core 2s are really POSes...
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May 5, 2009 5:31:53 AM

yomamafor1 said:
Gigabyte EX58-UD3, selling for $189, is SLI capable. Zotac X58SLI, selling for $194, is SLI capable. Asrock X58 Deluxe is SLI capable, up to 3-way. Foxconn Bloodrage is SLI capable, up to 3-way, is selling for $234. The list goes on and on.

750i, 780i, and 680i are NOT great Nvidia boards. All three chipsets suffer from massive system instability, excessive heat, and inability to overclock. Some of the users also complained about having their OS boot sector crippled.

In short, if you want a Nvidia board for Core 2s, go with 790i Ultra.


Well, I guess. But for many of those you need to flash bios.

???
As for instability for 680i, 750i, and 780i...what do you mean? I've had the 780i myself and haven't had any problems from OCing, instability, heat, etc at all.

They also all have great reviews on newegg.
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May 5, 2009 6:57:22 AM

Having worked with both the 680i and the X38 (and the x58 of course), there is a world of difference between Intel and Nvidia chipsets, and it is certainly not in favor of Nvidia. Regardless of the good reviews on Newegg, I wouldn't go with an Nvidia board unless I absolutely had to, and now that SLI is available on x58, I would say that x58 is the way to go for a new SLI build honestly.
May 5, 2009 7:04:13 AM

Bluescreendeath said:
Well, I guess. But for many of those you need to flash bios.

???
As for instability for 680i, 750i, and 780i...what do you mean? I've had the 780i myself and haven't had any problems from OCing, instability, heat, etc at all.

They also all have great reviews on newegg.


Great reviews? :lol:  :lol:  :lol:  :lol:  :lol: 

I've probably read through more newegg reviews you can imagine. And most of the reviews reach the same conclusion: Nvidia's 6x0i and 7x0i chipset suffers from system instability. Few of them can actually get the board to function at stock, let alone overclocking.

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May 5, 2009 7:14:34 AM

Just as an example, a machine I built for a friend with a 680i and a Q6600 would not even overclock to 2.5GHz. Anything over stock, and it would instantly crash. We thought it was the CPU though. After many frustrations, the board finally fried and I helped him out to rebuild the system with an x38. Instantly, the processor that we thought was unoverclockable was hitting 3.6. Everything just worked. Tasks on the installation and drivers that were difficult to get working on the Nvidia board were a breeze with the Intel.

Basically, the Intel just works better in so many ways that I would never recommend an Nvidia board to anyone anymore. Especially now that you don't need one for SLI.
May 5, 2009 7:22:16 AM

I used to have a Q6600 and a 650i board. Besides the fact that I have to replace the passive heatsink with an active one to prevent it from crashing, it would not overclock worth crap. I would be fine at 2.99Ghz, but once I hit 3.0Ghz, the machine would BSOD. Regardless of how many settings I've adjusted, from Vcore, NB Voltage, to PCI-E frequency, nothing worked.

Then I bought a P35 board, and on my first try, I hit 3.6Ghz.

The Nvidia chipset for Core 2s are POSes. Period. So if you want SLI capability, either spend money on Core i7 (expensive), or Nvidia 790i Ultra (equally expensive).
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May 5, 2009 11:59:37 AM

Sorry for the delay in responding to your post. I don't have a computer a home now, so have to wait to work. I can check you post on my cell phone but for some reason I can't log on to respond.

Okay... First Major Question... Budget...

I have two options I'm looking at for this.

The first is roughly $400, which I can afford out of pocket with some tweaking of expenses. With this, I was looking at getting the following CPU and Motherboard. CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 945 Deneb 3.0GHz ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) & MOBO: ASUS M4N82 Deluxe AM3/AM2+/AM2 NVIDIA nForce 980a SLI AMD Motherboard ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... )

The second option is look to spend $1000+ on Newegg to get the 12 months no interest deal and pay it off by than. If I go this route, I'll get an i7 920 ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...), MOBO ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ), Memory ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ), CPU Fan ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) and possible upgrade video cards ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) to bring the cost to $1000 or so. This is a harder sell for the wife but allows me to pay over time and not come up with $400 right now....

Any opinions on my options or ways to cut cost or make better within the same price ranges?

Again... thanks for your feedback!! :hello: 

May 6, 2009 4:34:43 AM

I would consider getting the 940 Black Edition instead, if you aren't going to get an AM3 motherboard.
May 6, 2009 8:18:50 AM

also can your board support the 45nm C2Q? like the Q9650? If so save green and go Q9650.
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May 6, 2009 9:42:24 AM

Bluescreendeath said:
i7 SLi boards are ridiculously expensive.


All X58 mobos are SLI capable, even the sub $200 Gigabyte one.

If you go AM3 you have to get a nVidia chipset and they are not the best for AMD or Intel CPUs.

SO I say Core i7 that way all you have to do in the future is upgrade your GPu and it can last you probably 2-3 years plus Westmere is supposed to have drop in support for LGA1366 as well so its win win really.
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May 6, 2009 12:33:10 PM

Anandtech: Phenom II X3 720BE & CrossFire X Performance
http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=3533&p=2

Quote:
The question we wanted to answer in this article, “Is the Phenom II X3 720BE an alternative to the Phenom II X4 940 for a mid-range gaming system featuring CrossFireX?” We have to enthusiastically answer with “Yes!” to that question based on our experiences with the games we tested today and several others offline.

In fact, we think it even compared well to the Q9550 in our gaming tests. The Phenom II X3 720BE does not match the performance of the X4 940 or Q9550 in application testing, but it is no slouch either, especially considering the $136 price tag and overclocking capabilities. Compared directly to the $215 X4 940, we think the X3 720BE is a better value if gaming is your priority.

When it came to actual game play experiences, our opinions still have not changed when it comes to a choice between the Phenom II or Core 2 Quad. The Phenom II processors are a better choice in Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts and Crysis Warhead due to fluidity of game play, especially with background tasks running or CPU utilization near 100%. In the four other titles, we could not tell any real differences in the quality of game play between the Phenom II X4 940, Phenom II X3 720BE, or Core 2 Quad Q9550.



On occasion The Egg will roll out a combo with the Asus 750a SLI that will save yah $20-$30 ...


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May 6, 2009 8:36:14 PM

I have decided to go with an Core i7 build. I've posted another thread for feedback on what I'm looking to build ( http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/264972-31-core-build ). I'm looking to order part tomorrow for Friday delivery and have the weekend to get up and running...

Thanks for everyone's feedback!!
!