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Cpu, gpu or ssd?

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September 11, 2010 4:03:20 AM

I recently decided to up my new build budget by about $100. So I'm down to considering whether to upgrade the cpu, gpu or add a solid state drive. This is primarily a gaming pc so it seems like gpu would be hands down the best investment, but some of my friends have ssd's and they swear by them, even for gaming, they love the fast load screens.

I was going to get an amd phenon x4 955 3.2 ghz. To go up to an intel i5-760 and since the mobos seem to all be more expensive it's about $75 more.

Also was going to purchase a nvidia gtx 460 1gb. Adding $60 there I could get a ati 5850 or go a full $100 more for a gtx 470.

Or I could just add a 60gb ssd for around $110.

I'm leaning towards just grabbing the gtx 470 and calling it a day. I don't see either of those cpus going out of date anytime soon, and the difference is probably a couple frames between them, whereas going from a gtx 460 to a 470 is more like a 20% performance gain.

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September 11, 2010 4:11:57 AM

ms5555 said:
I recently decided to up my new build budget by about $100. So I'm down to considering whether to upgrade the cpu, gpu or add a solid state drive. This is primarily a gaming pc so it seems like gpu would be hands down the best investment, but some of my friends have ssd's and they swear by them, even for gaming, they love the fast load screens.

I was going to get an amd phenon x4 955 3.2 ghz. To go up to an intel i5-760 and since the mobos seem to all be more expensive it's about $75 more.

Also was going to purchase a nvidia gtx 460 1gb. Adding $60 there I could get a ati 5850 or go a full $100 more for a gtx 470.

Or I could just add a 60gb ssd for around $110.

I'm leaning towards just grabbing the gtx 470 and calling it a day. I don't see either of those cpus going out of date anytime soon, and the difference is probably a couple frames between them, whereas going from a gtx 460 to a 470 is more like a 20% performance gain.


If gaming truly is the most important thing on your list, I would go w/ the i5. Based on the Tom's builds articles that just popped up the i5 actually will do more for gaming than the slightly better GPU. However if you frequently are browsing, etc. the SSD will provide the biggest noticeable effect.
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September 11, 2010 4:55:57 AM

I would go with the i5.
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September 11, 2010 5:21:19 AM

You think an i5 with a gtx 460 is better gaming performance than a x4 955 with a gtx 470? In that case the i5 it is, I just wasn't really sure.
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Best solution

September 11, 2010 6:12:59 AM

ms5555 said:
You think an i5 with a gtx 460 is better gaming performance than a x4 955 with a gtx 470? In that case the i5 it is, I just wasn't really sure.


Well, I don't have any super concrete evidence on that. But based upon this months Tom's 2000$ build, the i7-930 w/ 2 GTX 470s in SLI totally dominates the phenom ii x6 w/ 2 GTX 480s in SLI. So I can only assume that the i5 will also dominate even w/ a slightly lesser GPU. Plus it's pretty well documented that 460's scale great in SLI. So if you find you don't have enough GPU power you can go out and get another one and significantly increase your graphics output power and by the time you need another one it'll probably have dropped in price.

If gaming performance is your end goal then the SSD really shouldn't be an option. The game will load faster, but the actual game play won't be a whole heck of a lot different. Although as far as browsing, day to day non gaming use, apps etc. the difference w/ the SSD is definitely noticeable. They're awesome too but it's not as though a HDD like the Samsung Spinpoint f3 or the newest batch of WD Caviar Blacks are gonna keep you waiting bashing your head on the desk. But I would say go for the i5 as it will give you the best gaming performance and won't bottleneck a pair of GTX 460's in SLI should you choose to go that route in the future.
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September 11, 2010 6:46:09 AM

i agree with mgrzTX, also im not a fan of the gf100 cards they run hot and are power hungry, the gtx 470 is a gf100 card, however the newer gtx 460 is not so it isnt power hungry and does not run hot
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September 11, 2010 6:47:00 AM

but i bet sp12 is going to comment here swearing by his gtx 470 hehe
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September 11, 2010 6:59:51 PM

Ok, so SSD, not worth it for the games. So using my extra cash on an i5, would you spend extra for a sli capable mobo to run with a single gtx 460 or save some money on the mobo and go for an ati 5850? 5850s seem to be about $50 more than then 460s, which is close to what I can save getting a cheaper board that doesn't support sli. I don't want to run crossfire ever, it just sounds like too many headaches, but I am open to sli if a couple years down the road the 460 drops $100 in price and I need that extra performance.
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September 11, 2010 7:01:07 PM

Best answer selected by ms5555.
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