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Building 6+ computers for work, AMD or Intel?

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December 7, 2012 2:18:11 AM

Heres the deal I've been with intel from day one, but thats been for my gaming personal rigs.

This coming week I have a 8ish grand budget to build 6 computers for my boss and our offices.

Our office accountants/dispatches run stuff like: (all at once)

10+ firefox tabs/open pages
something downloading usually
a flash tracker
a small program (probably uses as much resources as a flash game)
Office/Excel/Outlook 5+ window
Some blasting itunes with their rap music.



Now to the point and the reason why im posting here, please stay on topic, don't derail this thread that I intend to learn facts about Intel and AMD, and which one is best in this case.
Based off prices and "8 core" capabilities id like to go with AMD.

Now off to my real questions/concerns.

1. I've build a dozen intel rigs, is AMD the same basics only different heat sink installation?


2. If I can properly overclock my graphic card, RAM and i7 to 4.7GHZ, from a rig that I've build, will building AMD rigs and tweaking the settings to my benefit be as easy for me as it is working on my rig? I mean I expect a little researching but it is basic plug and play like intel?
December 7, 2012 2:30:30 AM

1 - yes
2 - yes they are both one in the same, even use some of the same software for overclocking

Either hardware will suffice, there isn't one that is more geared towards what you describe as the workload

I'll admit, I'm biased towards Intel and Nvidia
a b K Overclocking
December 7, 2012 2:31:13 AM

Let me put it easily.. AMD CPU is the bargain brand. If you're building office systems.. Don't skimp. You really have NO need with only that kind of load for anything more than an i3 or lower tier i5. For the price, the intel is going to be the better chip in any respect as even the high end AMD's aren't nearly as potent.

Owning an AMD system is the SAME as owning an Intel system. The differences don't take a genius to figure out and honestly; in the long run the differences don't make or break a thing.

If I were in that situation I'd be pushing systems like this...

i3-3220
4 to 8gb of DDR3 1600
Decent (probably intel) motherboards
Decent monitors/sound/keyboards/mice

Reason being? Simple and they WORK and they would work perfect for the situation. There's no reason to be pressing a 3770k in a system like that as it's just a waste of money/power.

AMD 8-core processors aren't nearly what they "should" be comparing in the world of CPU's in todays market. The fact is that in almost every situation most of the i3/i5/i7 line just obliterates the entire AMD line of processors. And as for going into 8 cores? There's no need for a computer if that's the only things it's going to be doing. 8 cores may help with your folding@home scores but won't make running Excel any faster.

I'm not trying to derail your thread; but AMD just isn't viable unless you're budget is extremely low. And building 6 systems for $8000 leaves you with $1333 per system. You could actually build a rather decent server style system for that kind of price per unit. Heck, I could build you an Xeon based system that would knock your socks off for that pricing. You're way over the AMD budget imho.
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December 7, 2012 12:25:24 PM

Thats kinda the reply I was looking to learn from, you didnt really derail one bit you kinda lent towards my main question. Intel it is, and you have to also keep in mind that 1333$ is for 3 screens as well with accessories and stuff too, but im sure I Can fit it in, thanks! Anymore advice is welcomed!
December 7, 2012 4:18:33 PM

frsty said:
Thats kinda the reply I was looking to learn from, you didnt really derail one bit you kinda lent towards my main question. Intel it is, and you have to also keep in mind that 1333$ is for 3 screens as well with accessories and stuff too, but im sure I Can fit it in, thanks! Anymore advice is welcomed!


Just for clarity, you need to purchase 3 monitors with that $1333 budget or will it be using 3 monitors that are already present?

If it is the former, what size and resolution are you looking at buying?

If it is the latter, you will need a dedicated gpu as well for 3 monitor support.
December 7, 2012 5:16:29 PM

Yeah, need it at most 1400$ per with the screens.
December 7, 2012 5:43:04 PM

steddora said:
Let me put it easily.. AMD CPU is the bargain brand. If you're building office systems.. Don't skimp. You really have NO need with only that kind of load for anything more than an i3 or lower tier i5. For the price, the intel is going to be the better chip in any respect as even the high end AMD's aren't nearly as potent.

Owning an AMD system is the SAME as owning an Intel system. The differences don't take a genius to figure out and honestly; in the long run the differences don't make or break a thing.

If I were in that situation I'd be pushing systems like this...

i3-3220
4 to 8gb of DDR3 1600
Decent (probably intel) motherboards
Decent monitors/sound/keyboards/mice

Reason being? Simple and they WORK and they would work perfect for the situation. There's no reason to be pressing a 3770k in a system like that as it's just a waste of money/power.

AMD 8-core processors aren't nearly what they "should" be comparing in the world of CPU's in todays market. The fact is that in almost every situation most of the i3/i5/i7 line just obliterates the entire AMD line of processors. And as for going into 8 cores? There's no need for a computer if that's the only things it's going to be doing. 8 cores may help with your folding@home scores but won't make running Excel any faster.

I'm not trying to derail your thread; but AMD just isn't viable unless you're budget is extremely low. And building 6 systems for $8000 leaves you with $1333 per system. You could actually build a rather decent server style system for that kind of price per unit. Heck, I could build you an Xeon based system that would knock your socks off for that pricing. You're way over the AMD budget imho.



That doesn't make any sense. You tell him not to go amd because they are bargain chips, yet you tell him to go with bargain intel chips?

Amd is the better value $200 and under. Toms own benchmarks show it. In their fx8350 review, the 8350 beat the i5-3570k in 6 out of 11 applications.

Frsty, don't take advice from these forums. They are far too biased. Read the facts right here...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/fx-8350-vishera-rev...
a b å Intel
a b À AMD
a b K Overclocking
December 7, 2012 5:47:00 PM

You can get 1080p LED screens now for about $130 per. Get a $20 mouse (no, don't get the cheapest off-brand you can find; a Logitech LS1 or LX3 or similar would be nice). On the speakers, don't get cheap USB speakers, they sound awful. At least $30-$40 is worthwhile. That's $190 in peripherals, leaving $1100+ per PC. For a business system, that's easy. Assuming there will be no gaming, get HD6450 graphics cards for them.
I would suggest either Intel or Asus "CSM" designation mobos for these systems. Since stability is paramount for business machines, you will not be overclocking them at all.
At work I've got an E8200. We've got layers of AV and other security software, and I've got six windows open, including two browsers with a few tabs in each. The machine is easily fast enough for this use, so an i3 ought to do well for you.
December 7, 2012 5:55:27 PM

Onus said:
You can get 1080p LED screens now for about $130 per. Get a $20 mouse (no, don't get the cheapest off-brand you can find; a Logitech LS1 or LX3 or similar would be nice). On the speakers, don't get cheap USB speakers, they sound awful. At least $30-$40 is worthwhile. That's $190 in peripherals, leaving $1100+ per PC. For a business system, that's easy. Assuming there will be no gaming, get HD6450 graphics cards for them.
I would suggest either Intel or Asus "CSM" designation mobos for these systems. Since stability is paramount for business machines, you will not be overclocking them at all.
At work I've got an E8200. We've got layers of AV and other security software, and I've got six windows open, including two browsers with a few tabs in each. The machine is easily fast enough for this use, so an i3 ought to do well for you.


HD 6450 is not supported by Eyefinity, only those models support Eyefinity
HD 6900 series & the following :
AMD Radeon™ HD 6870 GPUs
AMD Radeon™ HD 6850 GPUs
ATI Radeon™ HD 5970 GPUs
ATI Radeon™ HD 5800 Series GPUs
ATI Radeon™ HD 5700 Series GPUs
ATI Radeon™ HD 5670 GPUs
ATI Radeon™ HD 5500 Series GPUs
ATI Radeon™ HD 5450 GPUs
ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 5400 Series or higher GPUs
to run Eyefinity on 3 monitors, you must have a one monitor that supports a DisplayPort, or an active DisplayPort to DVI/HDMI compatible

the 7k series I believe does support Eyefinity

It seems that there are some 6450 with displayport on them, check here on newegg
http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...
December 7, 2012 5:59:04 PM

"Thats kinda the reply I was looking to learn from, you didnt really derail one bit you kinda lent towards my main question. Intel it is, and you have to also keep in mind that 1333$ is for 3 screens as well with accessories and stuff too, but im sure I Can fit it in, thanks! Anymore advice is welcomed!"

add 2 more screens and you have $450 per PC or $2700 total on peripherals. That leaves $5300 or $883 per PC. That's plenty for a gaming... oh wait... ahem... work PC. What about the OS?
December 7, 2012 6:06:14 PM

Low-mid range chips from either manufacturer will suffice for the tasks you've listed.

It's hard to argue for AMD at almost any price point now. Although, you do solve some potential video bottlenecks with the AMD A series APU's. The integrated graphics on the low to mid Intel chips is terrible.

Personally I'd go AMD A8, with 8GB's of DDR3, and an entry level MB. You could probably build each unit for <$500 and they'd be fairly nice well rounded PC's for daily use with plenty of money left over for nice monitors and accessories. Might even have enough money left over for a couple of really nice spec'd out i7 or FX PC's for you and your boss.

From a builders perspective, if you have the flexibility to choose, and know either manufacturer can deliver what you need at your given price point then why not go AMD for at least a few of the machines. First you get experience with building an AMD box, and you help support a competitive landscape which is good for everyone.
December 7, 2012 6:10:50 PM

frsty said:
Based off prices and "8 core" capabilities id like to go with AMD.


Be careful in getting swept into the marketing buzzwords around "n-cores!!1". Most real world benchmarks(ones you can find on this very site) show that very few programs utilize let alone show performance increases with more than four threads at once.


frsty said:
2. If I can properly overclock my graphic card, RAM and i7 to 4.7GHZ, from a rig that I've build, will building AMD rigs and tweaking the settings to my benefit be as easy for me as it is working on my rig? I mean I expect a little researching but it is basic plug and play like intel?


No other CPUs in recent history overclock as well (or easily) as Intel's Sandy/Ivy Bridge i5 platforms. You can squeeze performance out of AMD's with overclocking, but it's going to cost your company more in the long run to go with AMD.


****Begin my opinion****
If I were you, I would choose the Intel i3-3220 as my CPU platform. It's fast, it requires zero overclocking to perform well given your requirements, and it consumes less than half the power needed than the AMD equivalent (AMD FX-6200).

This will save your company serious money over the course of an average five year hardware lifetime. There are even 35W options available from Intel, although at the cost of performance.
****End my opinion****

EDIT: Speeeeling
December 7, 2012 6:27:10 PM


$979 with monitors included, didnt do any peripherals though
a b K Overclocking
December 7, 2012 6:52:52 PM

I'd ask your boss on one thing. Does he want any case led's. You might want to let him chose that from a list you show him.

One thing I'm confused on is how many new monitors do you actually need? Do you need two for each computer (using one old one) or three new ones per computer. Each computer totals $1400 and with that what sort of programs do you need to run besides what you listed? Do you use any CAD software where you need an okay GPU or is the GPU just to run the three monitors? As already asked what windows do you want (if you need any at all)? What needs to be done that may be CPU heavy workload?

I'll be posting what I'd consider in a bit (but first I need these questions answered) unfortunately I have to go to work now and won't be able to respond for about 5-6 hours.
December 7, 2012 7:05:20 PM

Hey, no CAD softwares, and to a reply earlier, the Windows is covered already.

No major GPU stress other than 3 screens, 20-23 in size.

From all the comments it seems a i3 is the best choice, now I have to find a good priced motherboard.

December 7, 2012 8:02:16 PM

steddora said:
Let me put it easily.. AMD CPU is the bargain brand. If you're building office systems.. Don't skimp. You really have NO need with only that kind of load for anything more than an i3 or lower tier i5. For the price, the intel is going to be the better chip in any respect as even the high end AMD's aren't nearly as potent.

Owning an AMD system is the SAME as owning an Intel system. The differences don't take a genius to figure out and honestly; in the long run the differences don't make or break a thing.

If I were in that situation I'd be pushing systems like this...

i3-3220
4 to 8gb of DDR3 1600
Decent (probably intel) motherboards
Decent monitors/sound/keyboards/mice

Reason being? Simple and they WORK and they would work perfect for the situation. There's no reason to be pressing a 3770k in a system like that as it's just a waste of money/power.

AMD 8-core processors aren't nearly what they "should" be comparing in the world of CPU's in todays market. The fact is that in almost every situation most of the i3/i5/i7 line just obliterates the entire AMD line of processors. And as for going into 8 cores? There's no need for a computer if that's the only things it's going to be doing. 8 cores may help with your folding@home scores but won't make running Excel any faster.

I'm not trying to derail your thread; but AMD just isn't viable unless you're budget is extremely low. And building 6 systems for $8000 leaves you with $1333 per system. You could actually build a rather decent server style system for that kind of price per unit. Heck, I could build you an Xeon based system that would knock your socks off for that pricing. You're way over the AMD budget imho.



I am sorry, but this is horribly inaccurate. For anything but gaming, an AMD 8 core 8350 will match, and in many cases far exceed Intel chips that cost four times as much. There are a lot of "work" applications, which utilize all 8 cores simultaneously (which games do not, which is why AMD is not great for games)...one of those being Adobe suite, a category which AMD 8 cores rule in.

Look at the benchmarks. That is all I have to say (and I say this with a I7 in my computer...).

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html

Bang for your buck, the AMD 8350 is the way to go, ESPECIALLY when single thread performance is not as important (such as in an office environment). Gaming, go Intel. Anything else, unless you have a couple grand to spend on your CPU, go AMD.

Best solution

December 7, 2012 8:15:18 PM
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My suggestion for real world applications, going by the scientific method (you know, the numbers, not "well I like" or "I don't like"...

http://www.amazon.com/AMD-FX-6200-Processor-Socket-FD62...

(Same price as the I3 that was suggested, with about twice the actual computing power out of the box...)

Benchmarks... http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html

Then, not sure about your specific hardware needs, (PCIe slots, usb, etc.) but their are several quality boards for 50 to 100 dollars...

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-ali...
December 7, 2012 8:40:29 PM

I think Havens just about wrapped it up
December 7, 2012 8:45:57 PM

Best answer selected by frsty.
a b K Overclocking
December 8, 2012 3:55:07 AM

Well although already answered I'm going to make good on my promise to post what I'd get.
http://pcpartpicker.com/p/rrpo
All parts were chosen for reliability and longevity. The only reason for the k model is that it was $5 more and if the boss wants to in the future he can let you make them a bit faster. The SSD has a 5 year warranty and is one of the most reliable ones and same goes for the hard drives. Chose ASUS motherboard for same reason over other brands. The monitors have built in speakers that although not super loud they have good sound quality (I have some in my 23'' ASUS monitor).

For this the PSU is more than enough and it is from the best brand, it has amazing efficency and can even be overloaded quite a bit before shutting down the system.
http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/Seasonic-G-360-P...
If you don't believe that it can run this PC check out this website (it's the most accurate PSU calculator I've come across). With everything on it the computer is only drawing 198W (so even if you did overclock there is plenty of room).
http://www.extreme.outervision.com/PSUEngine
December 8, 2012 12:20:20 PM

Thanks Andrew, Ill be looking into that system as well
December 9, 2012 11:36:20 PM

How much ego is involved in this decision? That would be the boss's ego?

Are the people in the office hardware savvy? Would they care if it's Intel v AMD? Would THEY even notice the performance increase from an SSD? Or is that a selling point?

I imagine that people in an office setting with three screens would prefer three BIG screens as opposed to an i7.

Also, can you take advantage of any MicroCenter CPU+Mobo deals? Save maybe $50 or more there. Ask for quant discount and maybe they "could" ship even if in-store only. [?]
December 10, 2012 12:00:31 PM

The parts don't matter as long as they run what I explained they run at a good speed.

Anyone would notice the performance increase from an mechanical HDD to a SSD, its a huge difference.

Not sure what micro center is
December 10, 2012 12:34:54 PM

frsty said:
The parts don't matter as long as they run what I explained they run at a good speed.

Anyone would notice the performance increase from an mechanical HDD to a SSD, its a huge difference.

Not sure what micro center is


Forgot about Microcenter!

The next generation of the chip I suggested earlier...at an even cheaper price! 160 dollars for a CPU/motherboard bundle

http://cart.microcenter.com/cart.aspx?RedirectUrl=http:...

Or, for about the same price as the turtle-speed I3 someone mentioned earlier, you can get a high end CPU...an 8 core piledriver CPU WITH motherboard for UNDER 200 bucks!

http://cart.microcenter.com/cart.aspx?RedirectUrl=http:...
a b K Overclocking
December 10, 2012 2:19:47 PM

Good job with those links (you need to put product pages not a unsaved cart link). ;) 

But really I'll take the i5 over that in a second.
December 10, 2012 2:32:54 PM

andrewcarr said:
Good job with those links (you need to put product pages not a unsaved cart link). ;) 

But really I'll take the i5 over that in a second.


Then you are ridiculous. The piledriver stomps all over the 3570, at about half the price (Intel + motherboard= over $300 dollars while AMD +motherboard = <200).

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/high_end_cpus.html

The only reason to pick the I5 is high end gaming...which presumambly is something these office computers will NOT be used for..

December 10, 2012 2:35:55 PM

There will be 0 gaming.

Office Excel, Word, firefox, a javascript software that will list trucks and a flash based internet page that will track our trucks is the only thing that will be open.

10+ total of firefox/office windows.

you think an amd build will suffice ?
a b K Overclocking
December 10, 2012 2:41:31 PM

Only way the FX processors will be faster is in heavily threaded workloads. If you look at how it did in the $1000 build you'll see it was behind in most of these benchmarks.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...

The conclusion was that in both applications and gaming (although gaming is irrelevant here) the i5 was better.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...

Both will suffice but I think overall for a similar price the i5 is better.

Lastly make sure you have an adaptive display port adapter with each build if you want all three screens to work.
December 10, 2012 2:42:24 PM

frsty said:
There will be 0 gaming.

Office Excel, Word, firefox, a javascript software that will list trucks and a flash based internet page that will track our trucks is the only thing that will be open.

10+ total of firefox/office windows.


Then without QUESTION go with the Amd. In fact, I wouldn't even spend the money for the 8 core. Get the 6 core FX 6300 mob bundle from Microcenter (if you are anywhere near one...), for 129. If you want to really impress your boss with performance, put the 200 dollars you will save over a comparable Intel chipset, towards an SSD primary drive. That would make FAR more difference than some overpriced CPU.
December 10, 2012 2:46:09 PM

Yea, are amd builds the same as intel? Drop the CPU in the slot lock it in then drop the heatsink over boot and your set?
a b K Overclocking
December 10, 2012 2:49:10 PM

Yep. Although I still encourage a i5 since you won't be saving enough to upgrade to a 480-512 GB SSD since it already has a 240 GB model.
December 10, 2012 3:04:46 PM

andrewcarr said:
Only way the FX processors will be faster is in heavily threaded workloads. If you look at how it did in the $1000 build you'll see it was behind in most of these benchmarks.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...

The conclusion was that in both applications and gaming (although gaming is irrelevant here) the i5 was better.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/build-a-pc-overcloc...

Both will suffice but I think overall for a similar price the i5 is better.

Lastly make sure you have an adaptive display port adapter with each build if you want all three screens to work.



This is highly questionable data. You look at Benchmark Data from Passmark, or another 3rd party...you are also neglecting the fact that unike Games, office applications (such as Adobe) have been moving towards support of multi threading...

And the price is not "similar." You can get the AMD and MOBO for almost half the price. 194 for CPU and motherboard, vs. 336. If you go with the six core, like I suggested, he will save more than 200 dollars... MORE than enough to upgrade to a 500 GB ssd...

http://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Electronics-sata_6_0_gb-2...
a b K Overclocking
December 10, 2012 3:11:21 PM

As I said before there is a reason they're so cheap.
December 10, 2012 3:17:54 PM

There wont be need for a higher SSD than 120GB.
I will make all the basic files to go into the mechanical HDD while firefox and the main softwares will be on the SSD.

I have a 120gb ssd on my gaming PC with WoW/BF3 and one or two more games installed and still havent had issues.

Thanks for the input, definitely helps, looking to place my order sometime today.
December 10, 2012 3:24:34 PM

frsty said:
There wont be need for a higher SSD than 120GB.
I will make all the basic files to go into the mechanical HDD while firefox and the main softwares will be on the SSD.

I have a 120gb ssd on my gaming PC with WoW/BF3 and one or two more games installed and still havent had issues.

Thanks for the input, definitely helps, looking to place my order sometime today.


I have a similar set-up for my Adobe cs6. But an office environment isn't like gaming. Every application or folder that isn't on your primary SSD, is going to hurt performance.
December 10, 2012 3:25:51 PM

andrewcarr said:
As I said before there is a reason they're so cheap.


Yep. But its not performance, reliability, or quality. It has to do with greedy commercialism, and the law of supply and demand.
a b K Overclocking
December 10, 2012 3:28:11 PM

I think even 240 GB would be enough for most applications to fit on and it only should effect the opening speed of them. Besides the Intel SSD's also consider the Samsung 840's as they both have the same warranty period. They are also about $30 cheaper for the same size.
http://pcpartpicker.com/part/samsung-internal-hard-driv...
December 10, 2012 5:11:14 PM

That SSD is too much for what I need, its also 90$ than the 128GB one I have, its also a samsung

Ill stick to a 120ish SSD
December 10, 2012 5:37:01 PM

Yep the samsung one is the one I've got in my cart, thought it was a 128 for some reason
December 10, 2012 6:23:46 PM

I linked the CPU it has integrated hd 2500 doesnt it?

i have a i5 with that motherboard I use for a home office pc with no GPU i plug the hdmi in the mobo
a b K Overclocking
December 10, 2012 7:00:06 PM

I stand corrected after some digging as long as the motherboard supports has three outputs intel HD 2500 can output three screens. Although if that's all you're using I recommend still considering the HD 4000 graphics.
That other motherboard also has all the connectors you need.

Where I learned the truth
http://www.intel.com/support/graphics/intelhdgraphics40...
December 10, 2012 9:04:47 PM

Yeah what I might do in these builds is just buy a 3rd gen i7 with the HD 4000 and running 2 screens off that, I should save money and get more performance.
December 10, 2012 10:05:07 PM

frsty said:


Anyone would notice the performance increase from an mechanical HDD to a SSD, its a huge difference.


Yea, but you don't notice the difference until AFTER you have one.

Just sayin'

So far, everyone is talking about hardware. I wonder if you should do "a study" and see what the tradeoffs that everyone at work wants.

I imagine office workers with three screens -- probably value real estate more than performance. And bigger screens would really suck-up your budget. That's all.
December 10, 2012 10:08:46 PM

l.o.l
a b K Overclocking
December 11, 2012 3:48:21 AM

As I said before ask the boss what he wants. Because if he does want three screens it can be done or the computers themselves could have a bit better hardware.

An office study actually seems like a great idea if that doesn't bother you too much seeing as it's your ass if you get 8 grand and they don't even like them.
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