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New Graphics or Processor

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Last response: in Graphics Cards
May 28, 2010 6:29:37 PM

With the most recent video card releases, I was curious what my next move should be shy of replacing the entire machine, and need your advice.

The setup is about 2.5 years old. Was wondering if I should upgrade video card or processor first?
Was considering either going to a GTX 470 video card or Q9400 processor (and overclocking it). Obviously the processor is less expensive, but is it a better move for better graphics, or should I keep the dual core and upgrade the video? I know my CPU is bottlenecking, but which would net a better FPS and overall performance?

Current setup:
Intel E2200 overclocked to about 3ghz on air.
MSI 8800GTX OC (stock OC).
GIGABYTE GA-EP45-UD3P LGA 775 Intel P45 ATX Intel Motherboard capable of Crossfire (not SLI),
4gb ram (DDR2 800)
1000watt Power Supply
2-500gb Hard-drives RAID 0
Windows Vista Ultimate 32 (Have the 64 bit version also but not using)

I am a gamer and run both 1680 x 1050 (desktop) and 1920x1080 (TV).
Looking forward to games like Crysis 2 and Fallout:New Vegas

Any recommendations are appreciated.

Thanks much

More about : graphics processor

May 28, 2010 6:34:25 PM

a quad core would be able to exploit the 8800 gTx better than the current processor
May 29, 2010 10:32:59 PM

I think the best thing to do is to get a cpu, im in the same sort of predicament, as for me im gonna wait on getting a gpu and get a q9400 and overclock to about 3.4ghz, then get a graphics card a little later, just in time for crysis 2, :) 

by the way what gpu u got at the moment?
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May 29, 2010 10:34:09 PM

sry for the part at the end didnt see the part underneath with your system specs
June 2, 2010 7:54:03 AM

Awesome replies. Looks like the CPU route is the way to go.
Much appreciated.
a c 376 U Graphics card
June 2, 2010 8:32:08 AM

You could go for a Phenom II x4 955 instead, you can use it on motherboards that use either DDR2 or DDR3. It is both cheaper and faster than a Q9400 but in your case since your board can already handle core 2 quads you might as well go for one of those. Looking on newegg I would probably go for the Q8300 myself. They both use the same yorkfield core just with a different multiplier. The only real difference from the Q9400 is 6mb vs 4mb L2 cache which is nice but not a huge deal or worth an extra $40 IMO.
As for the video card the 8800GTX is actually still ok(though not great) for 1680x1050 but will probably struggle at 1080p in a lot of current games. What you could do is Ebay the 8800GTX. The seem to be going for around $100 still. An
HD5770 would cost you $150-160 and be a nice upgrade. It is about 40% faster and more appropriate for your resolutions while using less power, providing DX11 compatibility and more advanced audio/video playback features. It will also give you the possibility of crossfire in the future for performance similar to an HD5870.
June 3, 2010 9:16:37 AM

I thought the Q9400 was better at overclocking than the Q8300 and I could still use the DDR2-800 memory because of the multiplier (at high overclock rates).
also isn't the Q9400 when overclocked actually better than the Phenom 955 (also overclocked)?