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To Upgrade or To Not Upgrade? Core 2 Duo x6700?

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May 31, 2009 5:39:53 PM

Hello!

New to this forum, so I hope I follow protocol. First some background....3 years ago I purchased the Core 2 Duo X6700 processor then priced at $1000. I capitalized on the investment with a MSI 975x board.

Question #1 - 3 years later, I'm wondering if I should upgrade this chipset to a more powerful motherboard and DDR3 or just go the the FULL monty with a AMD phenom 2 x4 940.

Question #2 - Regardlesse of question 1, I impulsively bought the Foxconn OC GeForce 8800GTS 320MB last year and now I want to know if I should junk it for a new Video Card or try to SLI it with another similar card.

Any advice would be great. I filled out the required info below too....


APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: within the next two months

SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: games, movie watching/burning, documents & presentation software, email, internet

PARTS NOT REQUIRED: don't need mouse, keyboard, 4 GB of DDr2 running in Dual Channel Mode at 800 MHZ, I have a WD Caviar Blue SATA HD 500 GB, SATA 3 Gb/s, 8 MB Cache, 7200 RPM, and a LITE ON DVD/RW burner, Windows Vista Ultimate x32

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS: Newegg Rocks

PARTS PREFERENCES: None

OVERCLOCKING: Yes and not sure on SLI or Crossfire...which is better?

MONITOR RESOLUTION: I got a 19" standard monitor, but soon it will be a 22", so I'm thinking I'll be running some HD games

The easiest method is to paste the label on one line and then paste the link below it.
Example:

Looking at this MB:

GIGABYTE GA-MA790GP-UD4H AM2+/AM2 AMD 790GX HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Looking at this Chip as an upgrade:

AMD Phenom II X4 940 Deneb 3.0GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM2+ 125W Quad-Core Black Edition Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Thanks!

Mike
May 31, 2009 5:41:44 PM

Just to clarify...Should I keep the Core 2 Duo x6700 and upgrade around it or go with a whole sale upgrade?
June 1, 2009 12:12:09 AM

It depends on what you want. Do you want a top of the line machine, or something "practical". Do you have the processor overclocked? If not, overclocking it could delay an upgrade. You can sli that card. Not sure if you could find a new 8800GTS anymore and a more current nvidea card would not be compatible for sli. The phenom 940 is a good processor and has good overclocking potential. If you are gaming mostly, though, you may just want to invest on a good graphics card. Also, you are better off with a 64 bit vista if you want to take advantage of all four gigs of ram.
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a c 90 B Homebuilt system
June 1, 2009 1:06:39 AM

#2 IMO sell the 8800GTS for what ever you can get and give the HD 4890 (or 4870) a good look. It should be a good match for your future 22/23/24" 1920x1080 or 24" 1920x1200 monitor. You'll have the option of adding a 2nd HD 4890 if performance doesnt meet your expectations. And it will easily move over to any future PC build.

#1 You have a very good CPU and motherboard. Get a decent CPU cooler (one that supports socket 775/AM2/1366 so you can move that forward as well) and bump up that QX6700 to 3.2Ghz and get another year out of the MB/CPU combo.
June 1, 2009 3:30:32 PM

WR2 thanks for the advice...I will look into a new Vid card.

My CPU isn't quad core, but its only dual core.
June 1, 2009 3:35:11 PM

and doesn't the HD 4890 run at PCIe 2.0?
a c 90 B Homebuilt system
June 2, 2009 4:54:50 PM

Yes it can in a PCIe 2.0 (X38/P45/X48 and higher intel chipset) motherboard. Its also backwards compatible with PCIe 1.0 motherboards (P35 and lower including your 975).
Depending on what game and monitor resolution are in use you could see performance close to a single 4890 & PCIe 2.0 motherboard. There are some games out there where the PCIe 2.0's higher bandwidth would make a bigger difference, but not so large a difference that it would seem to cripple the 4890 in your 975 MB.
Going from a single 4890 to a Crossfire setup would probably be the point where a CPU and MB upgrade would make the most sense.

The THG forums are still recommending the C2D dual core CPUs for budget gaming rigs and with your X6700's unlocked multiplier, with a bit of overclocking, you should be able to get C2D E8500 equivalent performance out of your CPU which is a good match the 4890s GPU power IMO.
!