Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Motherboard or CPU? Which Should be Spent More On?

Last response: in Motherboards
Share
August 13, 2009 12:29:01 AM

Just wondering. Is it better to couple a higher-end CPU with a lower end motherboard or a lower-end CPU with a higher-end motherboard?

Trying to put a system together, and I am trying to find out what is the best. I am in need of a new computer and I am willing to spend only about $300 on new parts...which is just about nothing.

AMD has a new AM3 Sempron with 1MB (2x 512) of L2 Cache and running at 2.7GHz. Admittedly, this is pretty nice for only $40. Saving money here, I could get a decent $100 motherboard.

But, AMD also has a Athlon II CPUs which are about $60-80. If I got a cheap motherboard, say $60, with that, would it be wrong?


Examples: AMD Sempron 140 AM3 Processor + Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H 785G Motherboard (DDR3 Support) ($130)

OR

AMD Athlon II 245 AM3 Processor + AsRock or Foxconn Motherboard 740 or 760G (DDR2 Support) (~$130)

I am terrible at explaining. Pretty much what I am trying to get at is: which should I spend more on, my motherboard or my CPU?

More about : motherboard cpu spent

August 13, 2009 12:37:49 AM

lauxenburg said:
Just wondering. Is it better to couple a higher-end CPU with a lower end motherboard or a lower-end CPU with a higher-end motherboard?

Trying to put a system together, and I am trying to find out what is the best. I am in need of a new computer and I am willing to spend only about $300 on new parts...which is just about nothing.

AMD has a new AM3 Sempron with 1MB (2x 512) of L2 Cache and running at 2.7GHz. Admittedly, this is pretty nice for only $40. Saving money here, I could get a decent $100 motherboard.

But, AMD also has a Athlon II CPUs which are about $60-80. If I got a cheap motherboard, say $60, with that, would it be wrong?


I am terrible at explaining. Pretty much what I am trying to get at is: which should I spend more on, my motherboard or my CPU?


Really it depends if your thinking about upgrading in the future.

You see if you get a cheap motherboard you wont have lots of extra PCI or PCI-e slots, so you'll be limited on new graphics cards if you want SLI or Crossfire.
Cheap motherboards have less DDR2 or DDR3 slots so upgrading RAM might be hard.
If you want lots of hard drives, low end ones wont have enough SATA ports.

On the other hand if you want to do all that and get a cheaper end CPU, then programs generally well run slower. such as calculations and such, which if thats what youll be doing invest in the CPU. It all depends


m
0
l
August 13, 2009 12:46:05 AM

As long as the motherboard is a respectable brand and has everything you need, I would say put a little more into the CPU. Just check out some reviews and make sure there aren't any glaring flaws with it (the mobo).

m
0
l
Related resources
August 13, 2009 3:03:22 AM

Yeah that is a bit of a problem. The $50 boards are usually a bit iffy. I am not very experienced with building. $90 board might serve me better.

I am going to be running Ubuntu for the time being on this machine. Really, it's not a huge decision, its just that little bits of money get really BIG in a small budget if you get my drift. A couple dollars can get you a long way.

I do not think I am going to be needing so much horsepower...but how much is too little, I am still uncertain.

Thanks for all of the answers.
m
0
l
August 13, 2009 8:40:24 PM

the AMD Sempron 140 AM3 Processor + Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H 785G is what I would personally recommend. It has received great reviews and this type of board is very durable and reliable. There has been some success unlocking the 2nd core of this chip with a 785G chipset board too. If you get lucky you may end up with a $40 Athlon II X2.

While you can't depend on cores being unlocked, the sempron 140 will still be able to run all your basic systems fine until you can afford to upgrade to a better CPU. Just don't keep a lot of programs running all at once. The same guy who unlock the extra core was then able to OC this cpu to a stable 3.7ghz!

A better motherboard will let you upgrade in the future and the Gigabyte GA-MA785GMT-UD2H 785G will give you plenty of options later on.
m
0
l
August 14, 2009 2:03:06 AM

The above comments seem bang on to me. I think it is worth investing more in the motherboard as a good motherboard can give you more options in the future. For example in my last build I bought a decent motherboard from Gigabyte that supported AM2+ and 1200MHz RAM rather than going for a simple AM3 system. My logic was that in the future I could upgrade the processor to AM3, DDR2 is getting pretty fast so that could be upgraded. And in the meantime a cheap Black Edition and the Gigabyte overclocking options should see me pretty well sussed. I would definately recommend getting a better motherboard.
m
0
l
August 21, 2009 6:42:08 AM

Ok, well I went with the Sempron 140 and a GIGABYTE GA-MA785G-UD3H for the proc/mobo in the computer system I just put together. It was worth it!

I disabled cool'n'quiet in bios and enabled ACC and now I have an Athlon II X2 4400 (at least that's how it's recognized) at 2.71 ghz, which is friggin' awesome for only $40!

So, I stick by my recommendation that a good motherboard will give you more options for the future,especially now that AMD is putting out processors as cheap as $40 with a core that can be unlocked with a decent mobo.
m
0
l
August 25, 2009 6:34:15 PM

I OC'd to 3ghz easily without any problems and a temp that doesn't go past 37c with the stock cooler on the Sempron 140. I'm leaving it at this because it fits my needs just fine, but it could probably go higher especially with a better heatsink/fan.
m
0
l
September 1, 2009 5:06:36 PM

Wow...awesome. Sempron it is?

Thanks for all of the comments.
m
0
l
September 1, 2009 10:34:08 PM

A few years ago, I would have thought about buying a motherboard that would last me until upgrading to a new CPU on the same board, but these days, it's cheaper to sell your computer and build a new one (case, power supply, keyboard, mouse, and monitor are usually salvageable). I sold mine for $100 and built a new system for $470. Two or three years from now, I'll probably sell it for $200 - 100 and start all over again.

Figure out what you want for it now, and what you'd want in the near future. If the near future build is going to be more powerful, then don't think about upgrading, think about selling and building from scratch.
m
0
l
December 19, 2010 12:22:23 PM

hey will the amd sempron 140 support latest games like assassins creed and nfs hot pursuit provided i have a 2 gb ddr3 ram and a amd 760 chipset?
if nt will adding a graphics card like the 9500gt do or is the processor nt meant for gaming at all?
m
0
l
!