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Gamer/IT; mobo to OC q6600 or full 2600k rebuild - cost effective?

Last response: in Overclocking
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September 17, 2012 1:33:52 PM

Hello all,

Long time lurker. Thanks to all who post, I've used your insights for guidance many times.

I wanted to get some opinions, I'm trying to decide if it's still worth swapping out my OEM mobo to aircool OC my G0 q6600 or just bite it and build a new system.
I salvaged my current system (a gateway tower, replaced PSU and upgraded gfx and ram) that was getting tossed two-three years ago by someone because the PSU and GFX bit it. Current board has a bus oc via good old electrical tape and a non OEM intel bios flash.
I run VMs as well so i was thinking a 2600k/16gb ram or 32gb if i go all out but that's secondary to cost at the moment. Is a new (to me) mobo worth it for 100-150 (from what ive seen)? and what boards are still easy to come across? from what i've seen it's hitting the tail end of the cost bell curve where the older tech is more costly, plus ddr2, sata2, and (to a lesser extent) pcie2, etc are all dated and depreciated now...

Thoughts?

Thanks in advance!

sys specs:
CPU
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 @ 2.40GHz 50 °C
Kentsfield 65nm Technology
RAM
8.00 GB Dual-Channel DDR2 @ 399MHz (5-5-5-18)
Motherboard
Intel Corporation DG33SXG2 (CPU1)
Graphics
SONY AVAMP (1920x1080@60Hz)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460
Hard Drives
977GB Seagate ST31000528AS (RAID) 45 °C
117GB SSD Stripe (RAID-SSD)

extended specs below:
Spoiler

CPU
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Code Name Kentsfield
Package Socket 775 LGA
Technology 65nm
Specification Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Quad CPU Q6600 @ 2.40GHz
Family 6
Extended Family 6
Model F
Extended Model F
Stepping B
Revision G0
Virtualization Supported, Enabled
Hyperthreading Not supported
Bus Speed 333.3 MHz
Rated Bus Speed 1333.2 MHz
Stock Core Speed 2400 MHz
Stock Bus Speed 266 MHz
Average Temperature 50 °C

RAM
Memory slots
Total memory slots 4
Used memory slots 4
Free memory slots 0
Memory
Type DDR2
Size 8192 MBytes
Channels # Dual
DRAM Frequency 400.0 MHz
CAS# Latency (CL) 5 clocks
RAS# to CAS# Delay (tRCD) 5 clocks
RAS# Precharge (tRP) 5 clocks
Cycle Time (tRAS) 18 clocks
Command Rate (CR) 2T
Physical Memory
Memory Usage 41 %
Total Physical 7.94 GB
Available Physical 4.68 GB
Total Virtual 8.00 TB
Available Virtual 8.00 TB

SPD
Number Of SPD Modules 4
Slot #1
Type DDR2
Size 2048 MBytes
Manufacturer Crucial Technology
Max Bandwidth PC2-6400 (400 MHz)
Part Number BL25664AA80E.16FH
Serial Number 8107AD8E
Week/year 165 / 165
SPD Ext. EPP
JEDEC #2
Frequency 400.0 MHz
CAS# Latency 5.0
RAS# To CAS# 5
RAS# Precharge 5
tRAS 18
tRC 23
Voltage 1.800 V
JEDEC #1
Frequency 333.3 MHz
CAS# Latency 4.0
RAS# To CAS# 5
RAS# Precharge 5
tRAS 15
tRC 20
Voltage 1.800 V

Slot #2
Type DDR2
Size 2048 MBytes
Manufacturer Corsair
Max Bandwidth PC2-6400 (400 MHz)
Part Number CM2X2048-6400C5
SPD Ext. EPP
JEDEC #2
Frequency 400.0 MHz
CAS# Latency 5.0
RAS# To CAS# 5
RAS# Precharge 5
tRAS 18
tRC 22
Voltage 1.800 V
JEDEC #1
Frequency 270.3 MHz
CAS# Latency 4.0
RAS# To CAS# 4
RAS# Precharge 4
tRAS 13
tRC 15
Voltage 1.800 V

Slot #3
Type DDR2
Size 2048 MBytes
Manufacturer Crucial Technology
Max Bandwidth PC2-6400 (400 MHz)
Part Number BL25664AA80E.16FH
Serial Number 8013A977
Week/year 165 / 165
SPD Ext. EPP
JEDEC #2
Frequency 400.0 MHz
CAS# Latency 5.0
RAS# To CAS# 5
RAS# Precharge 5
tRAS 18
tRC 23
Voltage 1.800 V
JEDEC #1
Frequency 333.3 MHz
CAS# Latency 4.0
RAS# To CAS# 5
RAS# Precharge 5
tRAS 15
tRC 20
Voltage 1.800 V

Slot #4
Type DDR2
Size 2048 MBytes
Manufacturer Corsair
Max Bandwidth PC2-6400 (400 MHz)
Part Number CM2X2048-6400C5
SPD Ext. EPP
JEDEC #2
Frequency 400.0 MHz
CAS# Latency 5.0
RAS# To CAS# 5
RAS# Precharge 5
tRAS 18
tRC 22
Voltage 1.800 V
JEDEC #1
Frequency 270.3 MHz
CAS# Latency 4.0
RAS# To CAS# 4
RAS# Precharge 4
tRAS 13
tRC 15
Voltage 1.800 V

Motherboard
Manufacturer Intel Corporation
Model DG33SXG2
Chipset Vendor Intel
Chipset Model P35/G33/G31
Chipset Revision A2
Southbridge Vendor Intel
Southbridge Model 82801IR (ICH9R)
Southbridge Revision 02
BIOS
Brand Intel Corp.
Version DPP3510J.86A.0572.2009.0715.2346
Date 07/15/2009

Graphics
Monitor
Name SONY AVAMP on NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460
Current Resolution 1920x1080 pixels
Monitor BPP 32 bits per pixel
Monitor Frequency 60 Hz
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460
Memory 1024 MB
Memory type 2
Driver version 8.17.12.9610

Hard Drives
ST31000528AS
Manufacturer Seagate
Form Factor 3.5"
Interface RAID
Capacity 977GB
Real size 1,000,204,886,016 bytes
S.M.A.R.T
01 Read Error Rate 119 (099 worst) Data 000DF1C5BD
03 Spin-Up Time 095 (095) Data 0000000000
04 Start/Stop Count 100 (100) Data 00000001B9
05 Reallocated Sectors Count 100 (100) Data 0000000000
07 Seek Error Rate 082 (060) Data 000B6A26D5
09 Power-On Hours (POH) 079 (079) Data 00000049DC
0A Spin Retry Count 100 (100) Data 0000000000
0C Device Power Cycle Count 100 (100) Data 00000000D9
B7 100 (100) Data 0000000000
B8 100 (100) Data 0000000000
BB 055 (055) Data 000000002D
BC 100 (100) Data 0000000000
BD High Fly Writes (WDC) 098 (098) Data 0000000002
BE Temperature Difference from 100 055 (044) Data 002F2A002D
C2 Temperature 045 (056) Data 000000002D
C3 Hardware ECC Recovered 038 (025) Data 000DF1C5BD
C5 Current Pending Sector Count 092 (090) Data 000000016D
C6 Uncorrectable Sector Count 092 (090) Data 000000016D
C7 UltraDMA CRC Error Count 200 (200) Data 0000000000
F0 Head Flying Hours 100 (253) Data 0000004BE1
F1 100 (253) Data 00F4E225DA
F2 100 (253) Data 00DBD4A4F5
Temperature 45 °C
Temperature Range ok (less than 50 °C)
Status Good
Partition 0
Partition ID Disk #0, Partition #0
Disk Letter C:
File System NTFS
Volume Serial Number 41591692
Size 932GB
Used Space 745GB (80%)
Free Space 187GB (20%)

SSD Stripe
Manufacturer Unknown manufacturer
Serial Number ?
Serial Number ?
Interface RAID-SSD
Capacity 117GB
Real size 120,039,931,904 bytes
Partition 0
Partition ID Disk #1, Partition #0
Disk Letter D:
File System NTFS
Volume Serial Number 38DAF92F
Size 112GB
Used Space 76GB (68%)
September 17, 2012 1:52:00 PM

The Q6600 was a great CPU but it is pushing almost 6 years old. Assuming your looking at an OC or new system your not getting the performance you need anymore. What I didn't quite get is what your use of the PC is. I assuming a mix of gaming(GTX 460) and something work related possibly since your running VM's.

I personally would go with a new build as the Q6600 is aging. I would look at the newer CPU's like the i5-3570K or i7-3770 since both support EPT for the VM's you run. The reason I would go to the latest gen is for the PCIE-3.0 bus and since you like to Raid SSD drives you could make use of the extra bandwidth.
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September 17, 2012 3:05:47 PM

wow thanks for the quick reply.

I was thinking of getting a gen3 z77 board with a gen2 chip now for cost's sake, especially since there's no affordable cards that are PICe3 and most likely won't be for some time (as of 6-8 months ago when i was heavily researching) and at that point i could upgrade the cpu to take advantage of it. unless I'm forgetting or missed something.
the raid setup was due to cost and size, not as much performance, though that's nice too. i got two sata2 and 1 sata3 60gb ssd's last black friday for dirt cheap (less than the cost of the larger combined size drive by a chunk) but needed a bigger single drive. my current board only supports sata2 so...

As for usage, yes, its a game rig/home office server. It was never the performer i wanted (had i a non oem board when i got it, it'd be closer) but for the cost of free plus repair parts, it worked. now it's getting tight running the VMs when i need to test/learn/image/deploy OS/software packages with 8gb and 2.4 clock for a host and a client OS or 2 but is still doable, and i'm bottle-necking at the CPU in games pretty hard. if i built a new system and didn't harvest parts, I could also hand this one down to my parents, as they are still using the tower i built back in '02 (3.06HT P4. still running, albeit slowly) and it's killing me and them as well! (as you can probably tell, i really want to rebuild... just trying to rationalize it!)

also, the 2600k (and all of the i series 1-3gen) supports vt-x w/ept, just not vt-d, though some (ie 2600/S) has vt-d as well. afaik, none of the K series in 2nd or 3rd gen support vt-d, though some non K's do. the IO boost would be a boon as well but at the expense of OC? Is there something that I'm missing there?

back to the topic of upgrading rather than rebuilding, were I to upgrade the mobo, what board would you suggest as minimal cost yet still allowing for OC? I'd love SLI but not in the cards as if i could afford to drop on another card to pair, I'd just build a new rig hands down...
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!