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Please Help select an upgrade, more for video/music than gaming.

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April 4, 2010 2:30:11 PM

Hi,
Will try and keep this short,
I have a decent machine, have no complaints,

Core 2 Quad Q6600
Gigabyte GA P35C DS3r
6 gb DDR2
Nvidia Geforce 8800 GTS

I have to make a computer for my dad so am giving him what I have, and in the bargain I can upgrade.

I use my machine for
Video editing, music editing, photos, run applications like adobe Photoshop, AutoCAD, etc
And very occasionally gaming, more of online games …
But I am one of those who open 20-25 internet browser windows and 2 -3 applications run simultaneously....

I have a budget of approximately 750$s for a processor and a motherboard and ram.

Short listed -

(1156 socket)
Intel i5 750
or
Intel i7 860

with
MSI P55-GD80 LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard
Or
I did see some boards cheaper than the MSI with USB 3.0
Please suggest a board with USB 3.0



(1366 socket)
Intel i7 920

No idea about which board to get, but did see an expensive one
ASUS P6X58D Premium LGA 1366 Intel X58 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard


Last but not the least (although I have never used AMD)
Was thinking of a combo, (CHEAPEST of the lot)
ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3 AM3 AMD 890GX SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 AMD Motherboard
AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz 4 x 512KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)


I will be using my old graphics card Nvidia Geforce 8800 GTS

Please advice,
Thanks.
April 4, 2010 6:23:25 PM

any suggestions.......
April 4, 2010 6:44:24 PM

Are you comfortable with overclocking?

If so, i would go with the AMD setup, but drop the processor down to an athlon II x4, like the 2.6 propus (or 2.8 since they are running at similar prices now). You can overclock the Athlon and get 90% of the performance of the Phenom. This will tide you over until the x6 processors come out

9months to a year from now, you can keep the same platform and grab an AMD x6 processor (once the prices drop), which should be compatible with your mobo.

Once the dust settles you should be within your budget -- and if you are comfortable with the performance of the propus you can keep it and upgrade your video card. Options are endless.

Just my 2 cents.
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April 5, 2010 6:51:38 AM

I have never overclocked, dont think I am about to...


I also have never ever Used AMD, am seriously considering on trying,
as with intel i am finding upgrading does cost quite a bit,

but as i will be using multiple applications,
and considering i have a Q6600,

will the amd actually give me more processing power....


also why downgrade , and i dont ever over clock...

but by what you say, that overclocking the processor will give me 90% of phenom... wont phenom jump even higher if i over clock..

will i be able to use my Geforce 8800 GTS in the amd machine...
a b à CPUs
April 5, 2010 12:19:27 PM

For the apps you're using I'd go Core i5 750 or Core i7 920/930 - the AMD chips get crushed in benches for media/design software.

My preference would be a i7 920/930 on an Asus motherboard as you have some longevity on that platform - the initial investment is worth it in the long run. Grab that P6X58D Premium if you want SATA III and USB 3.0 now, or get a P6TD Deluxe and you can always drop in a SATA III + USB 3.0 expansion card later on if you need it.

Overclocking is simple on the i7, and it would really be a crime if you didn't give it a bump up to at least 3.2GHz. You can get away with a Coolermaster Hyper 212+ cooler if you're not going much past 3.4GHz but if you fancy going further you can get some major heatsinks like the Megahalems, Ultra 120 Rev C, etc. and push up to and sometimes past 4GHz.

6GB Patriot Viper 1600MHz RAM isn't too expensive and it gives you the option of jumping to 12GB in the future (and even 24GB if 4GB DDR3 modules become reasonably priced).

Yes your GTS8800 will work in any of the systems you've listed, and if you're not gaming too heavily you'll be fine with that (you can always SLI another if you can find one cheaply).
April 5, 2010 2:58:06 PM

If you do not overclock, then I agree that you shouldn't go with the athlon II.

The AMD 965 will give you more processing power than your Q6600 and yes you will be able to use your 8800 in the AMD machine.

The i5 will perform slightly better than the 965, and the i7 will perform significantly better than the 965, but both intel options cost more money.

It's not like you are going to make a big mistake with any of the three options that you have listed -- all of those processors are popular and lots of people are happy with them.

Ultimately it depends on what is most important to you -- maximum performance or minimum dollars. Take a look at the cpu performance tables -- they should be able to help you make your decision.

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2009-desktop-cpu-cha...

April 5, 2010 6:47:02 PM

thank you so much ... precise and well explained..
i would love to use an AMD, but i guess one of those who has been using intel since the days of 386ies and 486ies..

A year back i would have gone with the AMD, but the prices for the 1136 have dropped recently...

HAd kind of short listed the
i7 860 + the MSI p55 GD85 (with 3.0 USb etc), and it does fit my budget easily,

But i have gone through the reviews of the i7 920/930 with asus boards, you are right it wud kind of future proof things, but then again in computers there is no such thing as future proofing...

so with i860 /i5 750 with msi , i can get myself the canon s90 or the iphone 3gs (by the way do you get 3 gs unlocked in US...

but the idea of i7 920 has got me thinking...
a b à CPUs
April 5, 2010 7:09:07 PM

daebis said:
But i have gone through the reviews of the i7 920/930 with asus boards, you are right it wud kind of future proof things, but then again in computers there is no such thing as future proofing...


Which is why I used the term longevity ;) 

Socket 1366, I believe, has a longer life than socket 1156 - however expensive it is now, the i7 980X is a 6-core processor with the i7 970 on the way, and I just don't see socket 1156 getting 6-core CPUs. Hell, there's only 2 quad-cores for socket 1156, and I'm sure the entire i7 9xx series will get a 32nm shrink later this year before Sandy Bridge comes out.

Ultimately it's your cash and only you know how far you can stretch your budget. There's nothing wrong with the i5 750 for media work (the i7 860 is just stupid money for what it is) and will also overclock nicely if you want some more grunt further down the line.


As an aside, I don't think there's any such thing officially as an unlocked iPhone - I know Apple are moving to sell contract-free iPhones in the US but they're still tied to AT&T, so to use it elsewhere it's jailbreak time.
April 5, 2010 8:06:44 PM

so let me get this right.
1. i5 750 will pretty much do what the i7 860 would, (minus the hyper threading),
2. the 1366 sounds great and as i usually miss out on a whole generation thing eg, after win 98 i missed out the 2003.. then i got xp missed out vista, got 7.

2. but i did read the p55, agreed will not get the 6 core processor, but it is a newer socket than the 58... having said that, please suggest me the cheapest 17 to go with 920 OR 930.. and out of the Asus mobos you suggested keeping future proofing in mind, which of the two, (i am not a fan of gigabyte at all, although i own one currently...).

3.and like you said the 8800 gts will be good to goone the 58 right...

4. As for Iphone 3 gs HK has started giving contract free phones... but a wee bit expensive.. a 32 gb for approx 810$s.. Can i buy one in the US.

5. also have you heard of xp dark edition, just saw someone using it, the guy was
transferring 12 gb data seperately and then started transferring another 3 gb , and the time taken for copyingdid not slow down for either one bit.. How did that happen.. if i try and copy a file from one partition to another and decide to tranfer some more , both slow down to hours....


I actually had a machine which i just rebuilt yesterday for my office which i got years ago and had the parts lying around.. a P4, on an asus P4T mobo, with 2 gb RDram..
amazing speed even today am trying o install Dark edition on it...
April 5, 2010 8:16:04 PM

just saw the prices..

i5 750 + MSI P55 GD85 (has 3.0USB) + 4 gb ram ++++ Canon S90 or saving towards iphone
or
I7 920 + ASUS board + 6 gb ram.... ----- no camera or iphone...

What do you think...
lifes full of compromises... and how we succumb to it...

a b à CPUs
April 5, 2010 9:03:54 PM

If your Photoshop, AutoCAD and video editing is pretty intensive stuff then I'd make the investment, go with the i7 920 and start saving again for the camera (and reconsider the iPhone but that's WAY off topic lol).

If you're not particularly intensive, or the camera is an important part of your work and this upgrade, then I'd save a few bucks and go i5. And still rethink the iPhone ;) 

Another thing to consider is this: do you need SATA III and USB 3.0 yet? Neither of us have said anything about SSDs, and external storage or backup is fast enough on USB 2.0 and E-SATA.

You can save some money on getting a motherboard without these two, and there are good X58 Asus boards cheaper than the P6TD Deluxe I pointed out.
a b à CPUs
April 5, 2010 9:25:11 PM

i5 and i7 is going to give you btter performance for your uses.

Fyi if you were to overclock your Q6600 to 3.2+ you'd have performance very similar to a stock Phenom II 955.
April 6, 2010 5:49:34 AM

thanks guys, little less confused but pretty certain what i want...
!