Now I can buy either a Phenom II x4 970 BE or i5 2500 or i5 2400 (the locked CPU multiplier versions) and I was wondering which would deliver better performance gaming-wise considering the Phenom has an unlocked CPU multiplier and the i5 doesn't so I can OC the Phenom much higher while the Intel processors have hyper-threading abilities. Also, if I get the i5, I'll have to stay with a 6850, on the other hand, the Phenom will allow me to get a 560 or 560 Ti, which combination/overclock would get me the best performance?
If you overclock the 970BE as far as you can push it, it still under performs the i5 2500 or the i5 2400, and an overclocked i5 2500K, unmercifully slaughters it.
If I were you and had intentions of overclocking the 970BE out of the box, I'd find the extra money for the 2500K!
IMO This explains it pretty well!http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/276097-29-3dmark-scores