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Socket 1156 Upgrade Questions

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January 20, 2010 7:09:28 PM

Thanks for taking your time to help me out here.

Coming up in this month or early next I will be receiving some money, and my plan is to spend it on upgrading my DDR2 and LGA 775 system to 1156 and DDR3.

In my system I have a 640 GB Western Digital Caviar Black as my boot drive, and 320 Seagate barracuda 7200.11 as a storage. My system runs on a Corsair 750 watt power supply, only a year old.

What my question mainly is how does this build look, I was hoping to get some advice and feed back on it.



OCZ Platinum 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

ASUS P7P55D-E LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Intel Core i7-860 Lynnfield 2.8GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Thanks again
a c 84 B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 7:12:25 PM

What's the computer used for? If you're a gamer, you should stick to the i5-750. It's better in games, and quite a bit cheaper.

Might want to spend the extra $30 on the P7P55D-E Pro if you want to be able to Crossfire/SLI. The regular one's second PCIe slot only operates at 4x, which makes it useless for a dual GPU solution.
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January 20, 2010 7:15:05 PM

How is the core i5 better for games, when the clock speeds are lower then those of the i7 860.

From some of the benchmarks I have been looking at the core i7 860 out performs the i5-750, I have the money, so why not go with the next step up.

I am just trying to make sure I can make the best informed purchase.
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 9:07:59 PM

The i5 has a turbo mode that automatically overclocks a core that's in use when the others aren't. Gaming uses 1 core, so you get a free overclock every time you start a game up. You might want to check out some gaming benchmarks. The i7-860 is better in other applications, but in gaming, the i5 is better.

Another big reason is that the i5 is cheaper. The extra $100 you save with the i5 can be put to better use for a bigger GPU. In a gaming rig, the GPU is the most important part, thus you need to beef that up as high as you can. In new games, the GPU will always be the bottleneck, so to increase performance, you almost always have to increase the power of the GPU. I say almost because with really, really old PCs, putting in a brand new, awesome GPU isn't going to do much.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 9:39:26 PM

I think MadAds comments need qualified. When overclocked to the same speed, the i5 will tie the 860. Some games respond poorly to hyperthreading and you need to turn it off on the 860 for better performance. The big thing is like he says about taking the price difference and boosting the graphics card is what puts the i5 over the top.

If you do video encoding or massive file compression or other CPU intensive tasks then the 860s hyperthreding will make it perform far better.


Check out the latest Toms article on gaming CPUs
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/best-gaming-cpu,252...
Past the Point of Reason:

With rapidly-increasing prices over $200 offering smaller and smaller performance boosts in games, we have a hard time recommending anything more expensive than the Core i5-750. This is especially the case since the Core i5-750 can be overclocked to great effect if more performance is desired, easily surpassing the stock clock rate of the $1,000 Core i7-975 Extreme.

Perhaps the only performance-based justification we can think of for moving up from a Core i5-750 is that LGA 1156 processors have an inherent limit of 16 PCIe lanes for graphics use. This is an architectural detail that the LGA 1156-based Core i5 and Core i7 processors share, so if a gamer plans to use more than two graphics cards in CrossFire or SLI, the LGA 1366 Core i7-900-series processors are the way to go.

To summarize, while we recommend against purchasing any CPU that retails for more than $200 from a value point of view, there are those of you for whom money might not be much of an object and who require the best possible performance money can buy. said:
Past the Point of Reason:

With rapidly-increasing prices over $200 offering smaller and smaller performance boosts in games, we have a hard time recommending anything more expensive than the Core i5-750. This is especially the case since the Core i5-750 can be overclocked to great effect if more performance is desired, easily surpassing the stock clock rate of the $1,000 Core i7-975 Extreme.

Perhaps the only performance-based justification we can think of for moving up from a Core i5-750 is that LGA 1156 processors have an inherent limit of 16 PCIe lanes for graphics use. This is an architectural detail that the LGA 1156-based Core i5 and Core i7 processors share, so if a gamer plans to use more than two graphics cards in CrossFire or SLI, the LGA 1366 Core i7-900-series processors are the way to go.

To summarize, while we recommend against purchasing any CPU that retails for more than $200 from a value point of view, there are those of you for whom money might not be much of an object and who require the best possible performance money can buy.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 10:00:00 PM

MadAdmiral said:
The i5 has a turbo mode that automatically overclocks a core that's in use when the others aren't. Gaming uses 1 core, so you get a free overclock every time you start a game up. You might want to check out some gaming benchmarks. The i7-860 is better in other applications, but in gaming, the i5 is better.

The i5 is not better than the i7 in gaming. The i7-860 also has a turbo mode. The i5-750 can overclock up to 3.2GHz with only a single core loaded, while the i7-860 can overclock up to 3.46GHz with a single core loaded. I don't understand why you think the i5 is better for gaming. Sure it's cheaper, but the i7-860 is an all-around better CPU. We need to know a little more about the OP's intended use, but if he has the budget for an i7 that's what I'd get.

http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=364...

http://techreport.com/articles.x/17545/1
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 11:02:09 PM

The i5 is better for gaming BECAUSE it's cheaper. The $80-100 you save on the CPU goes straight into the GPU, making the overall computer better for gaming. The price difference between the i5 and i7-860 is about the same as the difference between the HD 5770 and 5850 or the 5850 and 5870. That's why it's better for gaming.

If he has the budget for an i7 and an HD 5870, I agree there is no reason to get the i5.
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January 20, 2010 11:08:50 PM

Money isn't the issue, I want just what is better.

All I am upgrading is my CPU, Motherboard, and RAM

I already have an HD5850 that is not going to be upgraded for awhile.
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January 20, 2010 11:26:26 PM

If money is not a problem then get i7... you can OC past many and has great performance
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January 20, 2010 11:33:16 PM

I have enough money to get the i7 860 but not the 920's and up. I just want to make sure I am getting the best product, and there isn't something I should know before the purchase. Ohh and is that a good set of DDR3 memory, just wanted to check, the timings are very good on it as well.
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January 20, 2010 11:42:59 PM

hopkiller said:
...and there isn't something I should know before the purchase...


Then as i've been posting so much recently...before buying that motherboard... remember P55 will not give you more than one x16 lanes PICE slot, and specifically the one you chose will handle the second PCIE slot @x4 speed!! Not even x8 which for sure lowers speed but will even go beyond to lower it to x4... so it's just an advice... if you intend to go Crossfire in the future that will be useful information, because it would ensure upgradeability . BTW, better speeds will come with the launch of PCI Express 3.0 in Q2 2010 and will be a dramatic increase.
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January 20, 2010 11:53:34 PM

Im not getting it 100% for USB 3.0 its just an added bonus.

and the pro version will run at X8, X8 for both PCI-E 2.0 slots
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a c 84 B Homebuilt system
January 20, 2010 11:57:51 PM

I would go with the i7-860. It's just as good in games, but better in other applications.

As for the 8x PCIe slots, the performance lose is only 4%, and only noticeable for the 5870 (it might only be the 5970, I don't quite remember) at really high resolutions. It's not something to worry a whole lot about.
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January 21, 2010 12:20:36 AM

@MadAdmiral Are you sure? ... i was reading a this article... maybe i got it wrong, but i belive it was in guru3D or Xbitlabs but i'm quite sure you lose some preformance... more than 4%
I read the one here in Tom's but this is not the only information source... maybe it will depend on the setup (a different one from the article here)
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 21, 2010 12:35:09 AM

grossemesser said:
@MadAdmiral Are you sure? ... i was reading a this article... maybe i got it wrong, but i belive it was in guru3D or Xbitlabs but i'm quite sure you lose some preformance... more than 4%
I read the one here in Tom's but this is not the only information source... maybe it will depend on the setup (a different one from the article here)


Maybe you seen this one http://www.anandtech.com/mb/showdoc.aspx?i=3649&p=1 still 2% to 7%

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January 21, 2010 12:56:03 AM

I kinda want to get the 1600 to get the extra power from them.
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a b B Homebuilt system
January 21, 2010 1:34:04 AM

hopkiller said:
I kinda want to get the 1600 to get the extra power from them.


hopkiller Just keep in mind that your not going to see much performance gain with this new MOBO CPU and RAM over your system you have now.

I had a EP45-UD3P E8500 and a GTX 260 setup i sold a friend so i only had to fork out 200 bucks for my system

Just trying to say don't think your going to see much FPS incress with the new parts

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January 21, 2010 1:36:07 AM

I'd look for RAM that runs at 1.5V or less.

And don't forget 1600 RAM is just 1333 RAM that's been certified as overclockable to 1600. As the following article points out "When you pay extra for performance RAM, what you’re really paying for is a guarantee that the modules will operate at a speed beyond the ratings of its components. ... After all, most builders don't pay extra for a CPU that has been validated by a third party to run at higher speeds, yet very few overclocking enthusiasts seek better value by risking the chance of a “poor yield” in exchange for a lower price. We willingly take that small risk with processors, so why not apply the same principle to RAM?": http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ddr3-4gb-p55,2462.h...

(Full disclosure, I bought 1600 RAM.)
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January 21, 2010 1:45:10 AM

I just clicked on the link to the RAM you listed in your original post and wanted to say - do NOT get that RAM.

Niklas touched on this but I thought I should give a stronger warning. The RAM you buy has to run at no more than 1.65V. The RAM in your OP is 1.7V. That won't work.

You have to get 1.65V or lower. As I mentioned previously, I would honestly look for 1.5V or less. It's anecdotal I know but I've seen more issues with 1.65V RAM than lower V memory. In general the lower the V required, the better quality the RAM plus the less heat produced.
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