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Upgrade Path

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July 6, 2010 4:22:36 AM

Hey guys, I have an Athlon II X4 620 overclocked to 3380 mhz and that seems to really be as high as it will go without going past 1.45 vCore. I'm also running 3x1gb Crucial ram at 1387mhz at 7-7-7-20 timings. Now I can either upgrade to 4gb of ram by getting 2x2gb of probably the same speed and brand since they are bullet proof for what I do. OR, I can get a Phenom II x3 and get just another 1gb of Crucial after I sell my other processor.

I just play games and surf the net on this, so I don't think I will miss the fourth core. Even if I started editing photos and editing video, I can always use the extra time between renders to take a break. In other words, I'm more concerned about overclocking it and hopefully squeezing out a 1ghz overclock. Yes, I do have the right stuff, my current CPU can run Prime95 all night and stay at 40-42C. AND PLEASE, we all know the X3 can 'unlock' but lets not waste anytime talking about it because if I really wanted the quad core, I would buy it.

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a c 203 à CPUs
July 6, 2010 4:30:45 AM

Hello Poisoner;

Are you playing RPGs and SIMs? Otherwise with a 3.3Ghz I think you're in good shape for gaming.
Not sure a 4Ghz x3 would be that large enough a boost in performance to be worth the cost and effort.



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July 6, 2010 4:36:34 AM

I play mostly Oblivion, Fallout 3, World In Conflict, Torchlight, Far Cry 2. I have a 4870 and they are all playable with everything maxed at 1440x900. So really, I don't need the ram or the faster processor, I still run XP. My birthday is Saturday so its just an excuse to stick something else into the case.
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a b à CPUs
July 6, 2010 5:30:30 PM

Sorry, but going from 4 cores to 3 cores sounds to me downright silly, since the entire future is geared towards multi core processing; the more the merrier. Why not get a BE Phenom II X4? Skip the additional RAM, since you don't seem to run any memory intensive application. Overclocking seems to be your primary concern & the Phenom BE will definitely overclock better than any other AMD.
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July 6, 2010 8:11:58 PM

ksampanna said:
Sorry, but going from 4 cores to 3 cores sounds to me downright silly, since the entire future is geared towards multi core processing; the more the merrier. Why not get a BE Phenom II X4? Skip the additional RAM, since you don't seem to run any memory intensive application. Overclocking seems to be your primary concern & the Phenom BE will definitely overclock better than any other AMD.



I get what you are saying about going from four to three cores, but that falls into the same category as not using RAM intensive programs.
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a b à CPUs
July 6, 2010 8:31:47 PM

ksampanna said:
Sorry, but going from 4 cores to 3 cores sounds to me downright silly, since the entire future is geared towards multi core processing; the more the merrier. Why not get a BE Phenom II X4? Skip the additional RAM, since you don't seem to run any memory intensive application. Overclocking seems to be your primary concern & the Phenom BE will definitely overclock better than any other AMD.


I'd have to agree here. You may regret a downgrade to a 3 core solution in the future. Multi-core seems to be the future for the next few years at least. If you can play everything maxed out then why upgrade at all? There's no point spending money where it's not needed but that's down to personal preference of course. If it were me, I'd opt for 2x2GB of RAM just so it's all in dual-channel although you then run into the issue of whether to go 64-bit. If you really wanted to spend some cash then is there nothing else that needs upgrading? Case, PSU etc? Just a thought!
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July 6, 2010 8:52:36 PM

moody89 said:
I'd have to agree here. You may regret a downgrade to a 3 core solution in the future. Multi-core seems to be the future for the next few years at least. If you can play everything maxed out then why upgrade at all? There's no point spending money where it's not needed but that's down to personal preference of course. If it were me, I'd opt for 2x2GB of RAM just so it's all in dual-channel although you then run into the issue of whether to go 64-bit. If you really wanted to spend some cash then is there nothing else that needs upgrading? Case, PSU etc? Just a thought!



I think I am just going to get another 1gb stick of ram to up it up to four gigs. But as far as the processor goes, If I really miss the extra core I can always switch back to my old Athlon II.
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a c 81 à CPUs
July 6, 2010 9:09:52 PM

Poisoner said:
I think I am just going to get another 1gb stick of ram to up it up to four gigs. But as far as the processor goes, If I really miss the extra core I can always switch back to my old Athlon II.


Are you running a 32 bit windows installation..?? You may very well spend the bucks by upgrading to 64 bit win 7..
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July 7, 2010 6:52:10 AM

Emperus said:
Are you running a 32 bit windows installation..?? You may very well spend the bucks by upgrading to 64 bit win 7..


That would be your best bet if you do opt for the extra 1GB stick. 32-bit Windows won't be able to fully utilise 4GB of RAM - it will be only be able to use about 3.5GB. While Windows XP does have a 64-bit version it's nowhere near as stable as the Windows 7 version so I'd definitely recommend you go with this one. Best of luck!
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a c 104 à CPUs
July 7, 2010 9:26:17 AM

I doubt either of the upgrades will be that worth while since the overclocked 620 is not a bad processor and you RAM speeds are good, I would wait until you can afford at least a 955BE or wait until Bulldozer comes out next year.
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a c 203 à CPUs
July 7, 2010 9:31:20 AM

Have you thought about upgrading your mouse, keyboard or monitor? Need an external hard drive for backups?
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a b à CPUs
July 7, 2010 9:47:32 AM

:p  I agree with everyone, don't go for a downgrade and.... You should consider switching to windows 7 instead.... It is a lot faster than XP in my opinion. And many others agree. Plus it'll set you up for the future, most games don't run winXP anymore. Also, you have to reinstall 64 bit if you are going to run XP (if you buy the extra gig of ram) Might as well go win7.

Also, if you do upgrade, a great AND FANTASTIC choice is the 955BE, it's likely you'll reach 4.0 on it, but if you'll need a good cooler. Also, if you don't want to get the 955, think about WR2's suggestions. Peripherals and such. HD is a good thing to think about too... Try SSDs? Maybe even upgrade to the Samsung F3's or Caviar Black. Raid 0 would also be a speed up your PC.
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a b à CPUs
July 7, 2010 11:51:44 AM

Or a second 4870 (IMO the best way for u)
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July 8, 2010 2:17:54 AM

I already have Win7, just running XP so I could do some screens shot comparisons between directx 9 and see the FPS difference, since I really should have 4gigs of ram for 7. World in Conflict performs exactly the same in XP and 7, while Oblivion seems to suffer the most, even with optimizations. So I'll be switching back to Win7 64 on the weekend probably, as I just installed XP because it rained all last weekend. And while 7 is nice, I'd hardly call it an upgrade.

As far as mice, etc, I don't play a lot of FPS so my wired keyboard and mouse do just fine. I have a 1tb hard drive for storage, and while I considered an SSD, I just don't turn the computer on and off enough to appreciate the faster boot times. Look, this thing is way faster than my Pentium 4, no matter how much faster it could loud, it could be a lot slower.
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