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Help: Which AMD Chipset?

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February 9, 2010 10:04:15 PM

I'm really struggling to understand which chipset would best suit my needs. Can anyone give me some guidance (even if it's just links to places the chipsets have already been compared)?

I certainly understand the difference between the chipsets with and without IGP. But, ignoring IGP, how does the 785G chipset compare to a 790X or 790FX?


Here's what I'm planning so far...
- CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965
- RAM: 4GB
- OS: Windows 7, 64-bit
- OVERCLOCKING: Not very important to me, stability is far more important
- GRAPHICS: Not a gamer, so not too important. If IGP chipset is best, will use that, otherwise cheap discrete


Should I be looking at 785G, 790GX, 790X, or 790FX chipsets?

More about : amd chipset

a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2010 12:32:56 AM

Shouldn't you go for the 790FX, since it's the latest, and thus has better support? Not entirely familiar with AMD chipsets however, so take what I say with a grain of salt.
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February 10, 2010 1:24:46 AM

All I've been able to ascertain so far is that the 790FX is only better than the 790X in that it has more PCIe lanes. I'm not going to be using this for gaming, and certainly won't have multiple GPUs, so if that's accurate then there's no reason for me to pay the premium for the FX.
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February 10, 2010 1:39:52 AM

If you aren't going to use this for gaming the I would get the 785g or 790gx if you aren't getting a discrete graphics card. If you are getting a discrete graphics card then get a 770 or 790x.
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a c 295 V Motherboard
a b À AMD
February 10, 2010 3:06:49 AM

Why you want a 965 if you aren't a gamer?, with a X4 620 would be enough.
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February 10, 2010 4:30:14 AM

If I were to get a different CPU, I'd still have the exact same question about chipsets.

But I know you were just trying to be helpful. So...I am also considering a Phenom II X2 550/555. I think that would make more sense to downgrade to than the x4-620. Realistically, it's unlikely that I'll make full use of 4-cores. AND there's a chance I'd end up with a cpu of sufficient quality that I could just unlock the two disabled cores and have a 4-core processor for a 2-core price.
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a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2010 4:39:59 AM

I was staring at the original post wondering what your using it for...? What are you using it for specifically?
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February 10, 2010 5:00:08 AM

Good question. I should have included that originally. Here's what I'm planning to use it for...

1. Will be running Windows 7 64-bit (just fyi)
2. Running one or more Linux VMs, primarily for web development
3. Medium-duty photo editing
4. DVD ripping
5. Light video editing
6. Office Productivity type stuff (Excel, Word, etc)


So it seems to me like I'll be doing mostly cpu-bound tasks, which is why I'm not putting much emphasis on graphics but I am going for a powerful CPU. Like I said above, a Phenom II X2 555 would probably be just as good for me in actuality.

I think I've figured out the differences between a 790X and a 790FX (more PCIe lanes and dual-lan support). So I suppose I'd rephrase the question now as "If you could pretend that the 785G chipset didn't have IGP, how would it compare to the 790X chipset?"
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a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2010 5:09:32 AM

For what youre doing id recommend a Athlon II x4 or PII x3 series, both would give much better performance in tasks such as the photo editing and video editing.
About chipsets, i would go with a 790x personally, and as youve already said you dont plan on CF/SLI seems best option as only does 8x/8x CF. 785G boards around that 790x price range only do 8x/4x i thk... and more expensive boards do 16x/16x. Frankly depends on your mobo budget to be honest, you wont notice much difference between chipsets... better off saving money and going with a AMD 770 chipset board, then paying more and say going from using a 5770 to a 5750 because of the extra cost of mobo
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February 10, 2010 5:26:09 AM

I hadn't even considered the 770 chipset. I'll have to check those out tomorrow.

Why would you say I'd get better performance from those CPUs? I'm pretty sure the Phenom II X4 965-BE trounces those guys (at least for theoretical use): http://www.anandtech.com/bench/default.aspx?p=102&p2=12...

Thanks for the advice!
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a c 295 V Motherboard
a b À AMD
February 10, 2010 11:15:50 AM

^Better price/performance.

I think that with a Athon II X4 620 is enough for you. The best option is a 790FX.

And you can find the answer about what is the difference between chipsets in the following links:

1- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AMD_700_chipset_series
2- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_AMD_chipsets

God I love google

And this is a configuration with a 790FX chipset.

CPU $ 98,99 Here
MOBO $ 178,99 Here
RAM $ 114,99 Here
GPU $ 179,99 Here
HDD $ 54,99 Here
PSU $ 89,99 Here
CASE $ 109,99 Here

Total: $ 827,93
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February 10, 2010 2:22:35 PM

Saint - thanks for the list! But I have a few questions...

1. I made the mistake in the past of spending more on my GPU than on my CPU. For someone who simply doesn't play games, and considering how fast the GPUs go obsolete, it just doesn't make sense. Wouldn't it make more sense for me to buy the Phenom II X4 965 and a Radeon 4670 (total $260, saving ~$20)?

2. I'm honestly confused -- what makes the 790FX my "best option"? That MSI board looks sweet, but why would it be better than, say, this Gigabyte 790X board?

I'm not just asking to be antagonistic...I'm really trying to understand the reasoning.

So, keeping the rest of your list, that would leave me with the following configuration...

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 BE [$180]
MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-MA790XT-UD4P [$90 (mir)]
RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2x2) PC3 10666 [$115]
GPU: HIS H467QS1GH Radeon HD 4670 1GB [$80]
HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 500GB [$55]
PSU: Antec TruePower TP-550 550W Continuous Power [$70 (mir)]
CASE: COOLER MASTER HAF 922 [$90 (mir)]

For a total of $680.

Thoughts?
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a c 295 V Motherboard
a b À AMD
February 10, 2010 2:40:51 PM

^Well. Just was an example.

1- The 965 is expensive if you compare this with the 955. If you want a Phenom, my advice is get the 955.

2- What MSI mobo?, and with the 790FX you can get a very good OC, without onboard video and other specifications that only suppor the 790FX. (Dual BIOS)

3- The 4670 could not work very good with the 965 or 955, at least get a 5770.
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February 10, 2010 2:57:13 PM

Quote:
What MSI mobo?
^ My bad...too many tabs open. I was referring to the ASUS mobo you suggested.

When you say the 4670 might not work well with the 965/955, what do you mean? Are there compatibility/stability issues? Or do you mean it just might hamper performance? I assume the 4670 would be better than using IGP?
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a c 295 V Motherboard
a b À AMD
February 10, 2010 3:07:40 PM

Differences between the ASUS and Gigabyte mobos

1- The ASUS is 790FX chipset, the Gigabyte is 790X
2- The ASUS have 4 PCI-E x16, for quad-crossfirex (4 GPUs), the Gigabyte only have 2 PCI-E x16
3- The ASUS support CrossFire-X at x16, the Gigabyte only can run the CrossFireX to x8
4- The ASUS support 140W processor, like the 965 processor that you want.

Cheers!
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February 10, 2010 3:19:01 PM

@Saint: dude - thanks for all the super-fast responses!


I'm most concerned now about what you said about the 4670 not working well with the 965/955. Can you explain what you meant? Were you just saying it seems silly to pair a high-end cpu with a low-end gpu? Or do you think there's some sort of compatibility/stability issue?
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a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2010 3:40:35 PM

adamlevy said:
Saint - thanks for the list! But I have a few questions...

1. I made the mistake in the past of spending more on my GPU than on my CPU. For someone who simply doesn't play games, and considering how fast the GPUs go obsolete, it just doesn't make sense. Wouldn't it make more sense for me to buy the Phenom II X4 965 and a Radeon 4670 (total $260, saving ~$20)?

2. I'm honestly confused -- what makes the 790FX my "best option"? That MSI board looks sweet, but why would it be better than, say, this Gigabyte 790X board?

I'm not just asking to be antagonistic...I'm really trying to understand the reasoning.

So, keeping the rest of your list, that would leave me with the following configuration...

CPU: AMD Phenom II X4 965 BE [$180]
MOBO: GIGABYTE GA-MA790XT-UD4P [$90 (mir)]
RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2x2) PC3 10666 [$115]
GPU: HIS H467QS1GH Radeon HD 4670 1GB [$80]
HDD: SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 500GB [$55]
PSU: Antec TruePower TP-550 550W Continuous Power [$70 (mir)]
CASE: COOLER MASTER HAF 922 [$90 (mir)]

For a total of $680.

Thoughts?


Actually for your uses I'd get the 790GX chipset and just use the Onboard video which would save you the $80 - Something like the Gigabyte GA-MA790GPT-UD3H for $90 after MIR. (figure you can always add the video card later if the 3300 onboard is found lacking but it really runs well for an onboard chipset and should be more than you need for your stated purpose (it also has 128MB of dedicated DDR3 memory on the mobo) bringing the total cost down to $600 and as mentioned I'd actually go for the Athlon II Quad core for around $100 and save that $80 also (but that depends on how tight the budget is - The 965 is going to be more CPU power than you'll need but that is your decision ( Though If going that route I'd go for the 955 instead as it is the same CPU as the 965 just one clock multiplier reduced (which takes 20 seconds to change in the BIOS and is $15 - $30 less !!)
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February 10, 2010 4:07:08 PM

Thanks JDFan...

Yeah, I've really been waffling over the IGP vs. low-end Discrete decision a lot. I believe the IGP on the 785G chipsets is better than the 790GX...? Given that, is there still a reason to go with 790GX over 785G?

Also, if I go with IGP, is SidePort Memory a gimmick, or worthwhile?
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a c 295 V Motherboard
a b À AMD
February 10, 2010 4:19:03 PM

Quote:
a high-end cpu with a low-end gpu


cool, you have the idea.

You are installing a $160 CPU with a $75 GPU. This could be a bootleneck, big difference if you have:

CPU: $159.99 Phenom II X4 955
GPU: $169.99 ATI 5770

Both are in the same price range, adn the performance should be better.
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a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2010 5:18:07 PM

adamlevy said:
Thanks JDFan...

Yeah, I've really been waffling over the IGP vs. low-end Discrete decision a lot. I believe the IGP on the 785G chipsets is better than the 790GX...? Given that, is there still a reason to go with 790GX over 785G?

Also, if I go with IGP, is SidePort Memory a gimmick, or worthwhile?


Main reason I do not like the 785 chipset is if you ever decide to go with 2 video cards the second PCI-e slot on the 785 runs at 4x speed where the 790GX runs at dual 8x speeds - the IGP on the 785 is slightly better but not by alot so that portion is about the same between the 2. As for the sideport memory it is good to have since in systems without it the IGP uses some of the system RAM which is usually slower and also means the system has less for its use.
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February 10, 2010 5:29:51 PM

Gotcha. I can almost guarantee I'll never run more than one discrete gpu on this box, but it seems like the choice between 785G and 790GX is pretty inconsequential.

I've read in a few places that IGP users are running into lots of compatibility issues with Windows 7 64-bit. Do you know anything about that? If I go with IGP on the Gigabyte GA-MA790GPT-UD3H and Win7-64, do you think I'll be in good shape as far as stability?
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a b V Motherboard
February 10, 2010 6:36:52 PM

Should be I believe ATI has released some new drivers recently so hopefully any problems that existed have been addressed.
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a b V Motherboard
February 11, 2010 2:21:02 AM

Read through all this... go with a 790x board, or 790gx board if you want graphics, 790fx is overkill, as the OP said, no way is he gonna be running quadfire whoever said that... drop to a 955 save some cash, and possibly a 770 board if you dont plan on OCing too much...
180 for 790fx board over 60-90 for anything else is indeed very large overkill
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