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Opinions on a modest upgrade

Last response: in Systems
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October 23, 2009 7:33:31 PM

Hey,

I haven't upgraded my PC since December 2007. And with Windows 7 Ultimate now here and general opinion suggesting it is well worth buying, I think its time for an upgrade.

Please can you guys advise if this setup change would be worthwhile:

Current rig:

Q6600
P5K Premium"Black Pearl"Mobo
Corsair Dominator 6400 4 x 1GB Dominators
8800 GT
2 x160GB Sata 2 Hardrives
Windows Vista Business

Proposed Rig:


Asus Ati Raedeon HD 5850 1024MB GDDR5
Corsair XMS2 DDR2 8500C5 8GB (4 x2GB sticks)
2 x Western Digital RE3 500GB Sata-II 16mb cache
Windows 7 Ultimate

So basically I'm only going to change the graphics card, increase amount and speed of RAM, more hardrive space and cache, and new operating system.

Would I be correct in assuming that its not really worth buying a new mobo just to get a core i7? Q6600 is still pretty respectable on the charts right?

And upgrading to 8GB DDR2 memory is preferable to expensive DDR3 (I'd only be able to get 4GB if I opted for this)?

And is 5850 HD anygood?

Please feel free to amend/advise but bearing in mind I only have £600 to spend.

Cheers for any advice =)

October 23, 2009 7:48:32 PM

Javno said:
Hey,

I haven't upgraded my PC since December 2007. And with Windows 7 Ultimate now here and general opinion suggesting it is well worth buying, I think its time for an upgrade.

Please can you guys advise if this setup change would be worthwhile:

Current rig:

Q6600
P5K Premium"Black Pearl"Mobo
Corsair Dominator 6400 4 x 1GB Dominators
8800 GT
2 x160GB Sata 2 Hardrives
Windows Vista Business

Proposed Rig:


Asus Ati Raedeon HD 5850 1024MB GDDR5
Corsair XMS2 DDR2 8500C5 8GB (4 x2GB sticks)
2 x Western Digital RE3 500GB Sata-II 16mb cache
Windows 7 Ultimate

So basically I'm only going to change the graphics card, increase amount and speed of RAM, more hardrive space and cache, and new operating system.

Would I be correct in assuming that its not really worth buying a new mobo just to get a core i7? Q6600 is still pretty respectable on the charts right?

And upgrading to 8GB DDR2 memory is preferable to expensive DDR3 (I'd only be able to get 4GB if I opted for this)?

And is 5850 HD anygood?

Please feel free to amend/advise but bearing in mind I only have £600 to spend.

Cheers for any advice =)



any more than 4 gig of ramm seems a bit excessive unless your encoding tons of video. you should be able to overclock your ramm to 1066 speeds with a little volt bump. the 5850 is pretty great. it out performs my two 4850s in crossfire in 3d mark scores by almost 10% and uses less power doing it, so in that respect i'm very pleased.
October 23, 2009 7:55:12 PM

The new RAM you buy will only work at the lowest speed of both different sets. Right now, unless you are a heavy CS4 user or something, for gaming and normal tasks 4gb is enough RAM. If your MOBO supports DDR3, then you would see a greater increase from 4gb DDR3 than you would 8gb DDR2.

Good call on the graphics card, although if it isn't already, you'll probably want to overclock your Q6600 to eliminate any possible bottlenecks.

Instead of that old WD HDD, pick up a Samsung Spinpoint F3. One denser platter = better performance.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

In regards to upgrading to an i7, it depends on what you do. If you are a heavy multi-tasker or encode a lot of video or any other highly threaded cpu dependent apps, then the i7 will blow the Q6600 out of the water. Just for gaming you will not see a huge increase though as long as, like previously stated, you've got the 6600 overclocked.
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October 23, 2009 8:12:21 PM

Hey,

So I'll still get the 5850.

But will cut down to just getting 2x2GB DDR2 8500s. If getting 8GB will makelittle difference to a gamer like myself than they can wait. I need to at least get these new sticks as my current ones are causing blue screen errors.

Also will get 2 x samsung spinpoint F3s (but why are they cheaper than F1s??).

And for the time being the Q6600 will do. As it will be too expensive to buy a new mobo and CPU, and that I'm a gamer leads to to think that I can postpone buying an i7.

Does that sound reasonable?

Cheers guys
October 23, 2009 8:41:21 PM

You should have a pretty good rig once you install your upgrades! As far as why the F3's are cheaper I don't know, could be manufacturing processes or whatever. Also, I'm not sure what raid controller your board has but it might be a good idea to research it, and if it is sub par just get the 1tb F3 vs. two 500gb drives.

And, you probably do but just in case, you do know that you will have to overclock the RAM to get higher speeds right? Just because RAM says a higher speed, it won't run at that speed automatically(most of the time), all it means is that the manufacturer has tested it to be stable up to that speed. Probably knew that already but just double checking:) 
October 23, 2009 8:48:37 PM

Not sure what my raid controller is. When I install Vista I select in the Bios "Raid" and the installation assumes I have one big hardrive. How would I be able to check?

But generally I should go for a Raid setup? Its just so much quicker the last time I did my research.. right? Or is the difference negligible now?

And yep I do overclock =)
October 23, 2009 9:03:22 PM

Yeah raid 0 would most likely be what you are running. And yes it is quicker as long as it is a good raid controller. Best way to find out would just be to google your boards model and check reviews.

And really the only drawback to raid 0 is that if one HDD fails you lose all of your info. Well that and instead of $85(dunno how many pounds that is) compared to $110 for 1tb.
October 24, 2009 10:35:19 AM

Two more questions:

Do I need a new directx 11 enabled motherboard to take advantage of a new graphics card and windows7?

And what are the main reasons to buy windows 7 ultimate over Windows 7 Home Premium? I can only think of xp mode to be honest. I don't thinkI need160GB of memory or two CPUs...
October 24, 2009 11:15:58 AM

ill buy Ur 4 gigs of dominator off u IF U WANt =D
October 24, 2009 7:03:19 PM

bump
October 24, 2009 10:10:26 PM

No you don't need a new motherboard. And yeah xp mode and bitlocker...a few other things but more than likely you'll be fine with premium.
!