I'm building a budget gaming rig for MMO gaming mostly. I really only play games like EQ2, WoW, and plan to play that new Star wars the old republic mmo when it releases. I plan to upgrade to a quad core in a year anyway but want to know what will give me a pretty good bang for my buck right now. All I really run is the game and vent, with maybe a browser open occasionally.
I can't decide between the Phenom II X2 550 BE or Phenom II X3 720 BE for a CPU. The X2 is cheaper and is 3.1 ghz(higher with OC and better chance of unlocking extra cores). The X3 has the third core but is 2.8 ghz(and less chance of successfully unlocking an extra core).
Just get the 550 it will serve you well for the applictions you state. There is the possibility of quad core unlock for both processors so check around do some searching here on toms and I bet you will find all the info you could ever want..... All this without ever hving to ask a question.
Why bother right now with the Phenom II X2 550 or the Phenom II X3 720.
Right over at newegg you can get the Phenom II X4 955 with a AM3 motherboard for about the same money because they are having a sale.
Go for the 790GX motherboard if you plan to use 1 graphics card or go for the 790FX motherboard if you plan to use 2 ATI graphics cards in crossfire.
For you on a budget you will probably want the 790GX.
So you won't have to wait a year to get a quad core CPU.
If you subtract the savings on the combo deals with those motherboards (since you will need one anyways) the Phenom II X4 955 will be about the same price as the Phenom X3 720.
Here is another good deal on a Phenom II X4 (the 940) although it's AM2+, however the memory is cheaper though.This system would be even much less in cost and would perform well.
The only problem about this is being stuck with an End Of Line AM2+ motherboard however that's not bad considering how powerful the Phenom II X4 940 is.Since it's way cheaper than choosing the Phenom II X4 955/AM3 motherboard route the money saved can also purchase the DDR2 memory so this with the mail in rebate would get you the CPU,Motherboard and 4 gigabytes of DDR2 memory for around $225. http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
a) you said you're building a budget gaming rig. last time I saw newegg, it was $20 cheaper. $20 is $20, right?
b) 3.1GHz vs 2.8GHz...plus I heard the 550 OCs pretty nicely...plus isn't it a lower watt CPU?
c) playing WoW or EQ2 if they're not written to take advantage of multicore CPUs, the x2 will do as well as the x3
take the $20 and get a slightly bigger or better performing hard drive.
and everyone is right...don't count on unlocked cores working. i got lucky with my 720BE OCing 3.4GHz on 4 cores. YMMV if you try it.
You should get the Phenom II quad core with the deal thats out there right now. Most mmorpgs are more cpu intensive than standard games and WoW definitely does better on a quad core than dual core or tri-core.