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New CPU, need help

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April 23, 2010 5:42:29 AM

My specs are:

AMD athlon x2 6000+ 3.2ghz
Nvidia 8800 ultra
asus m2n sli mobo
3gb ram
320gb HDD
and 2 optical drives
Audigy xi fi sound card – something like that
24 inch monitor
1000W thermaltake psu

I have $220 max to spend and i want the best performance i can get. My main aim is gaming aswell. Some possible options that i can think of are:

- SSD for my OS and a game or 2
- New video card – possibly ATI 5770
- 2nd 8800 ultra if i can get one 2nd hand and put it in SLI
- New motherboard and cpu – probably an amd phenom II x3 720 BE cpu – can get both a mobo and that cpu for bout $180
- Some sick speakers :) 
- New mobo, ddr 3 ram and keep the same cpu

I dont mind spending the full $220 just i want a system can play some decent games that are coming out. Nothing like crysis, just games like cod 4, starcraft 2, company of heroes and wow just games like that. im leaning towards a mobo and CPU upgrade so can u suggest the best options plz

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April 23, 2010 6:18:54 AM

To be honest, you'd only need a CPU upgrade - the GeForce 8800 Ultra performs on par with the 9800GTX+/GTS 250, which performs the same as the HD 5750, and is only a bit behind the HD 5770.

You'd need to get a new motherboard however - I don't believe any Phenom II processors are supported on the M2N-SLI, possibly the Phenom II X4 940 AM2+, but you'd have to check that out.
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April 23, 2010 6:21:14 AM

What resolution do you play at ?
And i agree with Lmeo,going from a 8800U to a HD 5770 will give you a boost but not much.
So getting at least a 5850 will give you a good boost,but as i said the resolution that you play is important
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April 23, 2010 6:29:54 AM

just usually 1620x 1280 res i think it is. I dont have all the graphics maxed either on any games, the graphics doesnt really bother me id rather it play smooth. An my mobo doesnt support and phenom II processors so im thinking upgrading it is the way to go?
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April 23, 2010 7:02:32 AM

The 1620x1280 is as heavy as the 1920x1080 number of pixelwise so the 8800 maybe a bit on the low side. I agree that from 8800 to 5770, the upgrade will not be worth it unless you can sell your 8800.

On the otherhand, you mentioned that graphics does not matter much as well. Do you experience lagging or stuttering on the gameplay?
April 23, 2010 7:12:00 AM

i dont mind playing games at a lower res and i probably will. And i actually dont have the pc, im getting it from a friend next week but i wanted to look into other parts now cause i have some more money to burn, but i know that the cpu wont be able to handle much. So can u suggest any good cpu and mobo combos, also i will msot likely overclock but seeing as im a beginner overclocked a Black edition amd would benefit me alot.
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April 23, 2010 11:53:35 AM

Okay, let us look again at your options:
sammydfrancisco said:


I have $220 max to spend and i want the best performance i can get. My main aim is gaming aswell. Some possible options that i can think of are:

- SSD for my OS and a game or 2
- New video card – possibly ATI 5770
- 2nd 8800 ultra if i can get one 2nd hand and put it in SLI
- New motherboard and cpu – probably an amd phenom II x3 720 BE cpu – can get both a mobo and that cpu for bout $180
- Some sick speakers :) 
- New mobo, ddr 3 ram and keep the same cpu

I dont mind spending the full $220 just i want a system can play some decent games that are coming out. Nothing like crysis, just games like cod 4, starcraft 2, company of heroes and wow just games like that. im leaning towards a mobo and CPU upgrade so can u suggest the best options plz

- SSD is less priority in my opinion
- 2nd 8800 is not needed if you don't need excellent graphics
- Some sick speakers - what do you have now?
- New mobo+DDR3+old CPU - Wont work

The new mobo+cpu open up some possibilities. Since you want DDR3 then you have to buy RAM too.

If you are in the US here is a good combo deal:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboDealDetails.aspx?Ite...
Biostar may not be as popular as highend but I have a build on the same mobo since october 2009 and no problem so far.
The CPU is the athlon II X4 635. The performance increase can be seen here:
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/28?vs=122
It cost $180. Just add a bit to the remaining $40 from your $220 budget for a 2GB DDR3 stick and you are set.

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April 23, 2010 12:06:17 PM

If you are not deadset about DDR3, you can get a quad PII + AM2/AM2+AM3 motherboard that can take in your existing 3GB RAM. THen you will have a better CPU with more RAM capacity at probably the same cost.
April 23, 2010 10:13:38 PM

thanks for that guy, thats given me something to think about. DDr 3 was just an idea as well id rather jst stick with ddr2 for now. A phenom II x4 sounds good, but if i get one id like to overclock but seeing as im a beginner a black edition one would be nice. Can you suggest wat x4 phenom ii to get? would i be able to get a amd phenom II x4 945 or 955 BE models? and a cheaper mobo? and i would like to keep my ram that i have at the moment
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April 23, 2010 10:16:21 PM

If your new/old mobo can support it you'll want the 955BE.
April 23, 2010 10:39:39 PM

no, my present mobo doesnt support it so i will have to do a mobo and cpu update. can you guys have a look at these and tell me wat u think?

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... - this says open box? what does that mean? cause its cheaper its quite appealing allowing me to buy an aftermark coooler

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

so can u guys give me the best option? im leaning towars the triple core x3 720 BE, it gives me a chance to overclock pretty well, also a quad core option but im not sure if i wanna do that. Also that can give me a bit of money left over for a decent cooler probably.

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April 24, 2010 12:24:27 AM

Open box means someone returned it and it was somewhat tested by them to still be good. Open box has limited warranties with newegg. Please read their policy.
April 24, 2010 1:15:49 AM

ill just buy a new cpu and not get the open box, dont wanna risk it. So can anyone recommend the cpu and motherboard to get?
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April 24, 2010 1:47:19 AM

I will recommend the X4 955. Your old CPU being on 3.2Ghz already, it would not feel good to have anything lower than that. With the X4 955 you got the same speed ( at stock ) and you got 2 more cores to boot. A worthy upgrade.

As for the mobo, this is my favorite recommendation for AM2/AM2+/AM3:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
It is $80 but got a $20mail in rebate so it fits right to your $220 budget ( 160 for the X4 955 + $60 for the MSI motherboard ).
April 24, 2010 2:02:37 AM

ok that looks pretty sweet, but will my old ddr2 ram work? and can i use my 3gb of it or can i only use the 2gb of it? Also does the board offer much overclocking potential? same with the cpu? can i overclcok much? probably not much just a mild overclock
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April 24, 2010 2:19:34 AM

The MSI have good overclocking control in the BIOS and they also have tools for overclocking thru the MSI OC utility.
Yes, you can use all 3 sticks of RAM but they will work on single channel versus dual channel if you only use 2 sticks. But the 3GB RAM capacity even in single channel will do more good for you than 2GB in dual channel.
April 24, 2010 2:35:16 AM

ok well that combo looks pretty sweet, just trying to get the funds cause im only 16 and havnt got a job. $220 was pushing it so now i gotta fork out the extra $20 even tho i get it back, the initial is wats killing me lol :)  but ive read the reviews and it looks pretty fking sweet tbh soz for swear :) 
!