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Help! Need help choosing a budget CPU!

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December 1, 2009 1:21:42 AM

Hi all! After getting some answers from another thread, I've decided to upgrade my ancient Athlon 64 3200+ (2.2Ghz, 512KB L2 Cache).

I'm probably going to be getting this motherboard: GIGABYTE GA-MA785GMT-UD2H AM3 AMD 785G HDMI Micro ATX
http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1681...
It's got DDR3 for some future proofing and has pretty good reviews for not too expensive a price.

My question now is which CPU I should get.
Should I go for the Athlon II X2 250, the Phenom II X2 550, or the Athlon II X4 620 Propus? I can't afford to spend more, as my upgrade is already over my budget.

I'll be using the computer for occasional gaming, office apps, multimedia, and internet. I don't game that often, but once in a while a really good game comes along (like Gears of War or Dawn of War 2) and I'd like to be able to play it decently.

Which CPU should I get? Which one would be the most future proof, as far as games are concerned? The Athlon II X4?

The Athlon II X2 250 is there because it's cheap, and I'm on a very tight student budget. I know it doesn't perform as well as the other two, but I've read very good things on it.

More about : choosing budget cpu

December 1, 2009 1:44:00 AM

Well, Yes it good. But i suject u go for a video card like 4670 if u don wonna game much and 4850 if u wonna game. You can still play some games with that onboard GPU.

My PERSONAL opinion is go for Intel. Its up to you man.
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a c 174 à CPUs
December 1, 2009 1:44:28 AM

For a future, get the X4 620. Is a good deal for the price and performance. BUT if your budget isn't enough, get the X2 550, is a BE and have L3 cache.
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a c 83 à CPUs
December 1, 2009 2:02:57 AM

Personally I would opt for the Athlon II X4 620
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a c 174 à CPUs
December 1, 2009 2:06:55 AM

@ crazy359

The budget is an student budget, so, intel always is more expensive that AMD, isn't a good option for a price/performance rig.
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December 1, 2009 2:38:24 AM

saint19 said:
For a future, get the X4 620. Is a good deal for the price and performance. BUT if your budget isn't enough, get the X2 550, is a BE and have L3 cache.



I would also suggest the X2 550 BE (Black Edition, which means unlocked multiplier, which means ENDLESS overclocking possibilities :D  )

Also, you always have the chance to unlock the extra two dormant cores on that CPU for a $100 quad-core equivalent to the 945/955. (Just make sure you have a south bridge of 710 or 750, and NOT an nvidia south bridge.)
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December 1, 2009 3:38:44 PM

Thanks for the suggestions. I forgot to mention that I live in Canada, so I'll be waiting for combo deals on Newegg.ca instead.

I did some more reading and I'm leaning towards the Athlon II X4 620 for some future proofing. I'm not an unlocker/overclocker, and I'm not sure if I'd get into it. I've also heard that even if I manage to unlock the Phenom II 550, there's chance that it won't be stable. Plus I'd have to get an aftermarket heatsink and fan?

I probably won't be upgrading for another 3 years. So down the line, I'm assuming the X4 620 is probably a much better choice than the X2s, since games and apps (lightroom, photoshop) will be taking advantage of quad-cores by then. Is this a correct assumption?

Also, if I do get an Athlon II X4 620, will it run properly with an Antec Earthwatts 380w? The system will also have a GeForce 9800GT.

Thanks again!
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December 1, 2009 4:57:34 PM

you won't go far wrong with that chip, I have a athlon II x2 240, the cheapest AM3 chips there is (I think) and it really is a great chip, runs very cool and fast, basically a 620 will offer double the power, Photoshop and indeed all the cs4 and onwards apps are optimized for more cores,
a 620 is (i think) 95 watts, so your PSU should be fine
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a b à CPUs
December 1, 2009 5:52:42 PM

Go with the Phenom II X2 550 if you are going to overclock it and use it for gaming.

If you're going to do more video editing and multitasking then go with the Athlon II X4 620
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a b à CPUs
December 1, 2009 9:33:39 PM

Middle ground: Athlon II X3 275
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December 1, 2009 11:03:12 PM

Hey, I know your budget is tight (I'm a student too), but honestly if you are gonna upgrade to DDR3 memory anyways I would really look at the i5 setup. This combo will cost $100 US more than what you were going to spend but will provide you with true future proofing since it will be much faster than either of the chips you were looking at. $100 might be tight but it would be $100 well spent for anything you might do.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
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December 2, 2009 5:16:02 PM

Think I'll go with the Athlon X4 620, seems more future proof than the other two, and has good performance in today's games too. Also very slightly cheaper than the phenom 550. Intel is just too expensive for me, based on what I've read, AMD has the best performance/dollar in the budget/mainstream sectors.

Thanks for all the help!
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a c 174 à CPUs
December 2, 2009 5:23:25 PM

SuperYogurt said:
Think I'll go with the Athlon X4 620, seems more future proof than the other two, and has good performance in today's games too. Also very slightly cheaper than the phenom 550. Intel is just too expensive for me, based on what I've read, AMD has the best performance/dollar in the budget/mainstream sectors.

Thanks for all the help!


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Good choise, how i said up, the 620 have more future 'cause have 4 cores. The 550 is a really good procesor, but is expensive for a X2.

Good luck with your rig...Cheers!
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