Was wondering which would you all go with either a Core i3 550 or Athlon II x4 640 for basic uses like internet, watching movies, listen to music plan on adding a graphics card in a couple months for gaming
I would look for something used when sandy bridge is released. I found a 1366 i7 920 for $100, an i5 750 for $75, and a g6950 for $50 all within the last two months. You don't need top of the line for your uses, I use an i3 for my daily system. Either of those two cpus you mentioned will work fine.
crysis, crysis warhead, battlefield bad company 2, call of duty black ops
this is what i picked for mainboards
BIOSTAR TH55 HD for Intel
ASRock 880GM-LE for AMD
graphics card is
gts 450 or gtx 460
i would say neither are good choice for game like crysis. i3 550 aint much better than e7xxx but 50 bucks extra just for stupid hyper threading? that's just waste of money. even thought athlon x4 is a quad core and having advantage over i3 in core number it's single thread performance is even worst than these celeron on 775 which 4-core combine overall performance isn't really impressive. while looking for quad core or 4 thread processor why don't you just go for high single thread cpu instead?
a phenomII x3 715 can destroy both on the list....and only $75.99
just dont see it i had amd athlon II x4 630 with a hd4870 1GB and it ran 45-50 fps on crysis
i can tell your 6870 is seriously bottleneck....
that's said, why needed a quad core athlon when the single threading is ONLY half of phenom? plus he plays game that's before 2008(bad company 2's engine is same as mercenary/bc 1 so it count as pre 2008 game ) which most of old game and console ported don't take advantage on quad core and single thread performance is more important than having more core if these core are weak&useless.
you have your answer, it is really depends on what game you're playing most of console game don't optimize more than 2 core and newer pc game that supporting multicore like metro2033 your athlon x4 will not able to handle it due to weaker core performance. i would say if your budget is limited you should stick with p2 545~550 or add extra 50 buck you can get p2 x4 945be which is twice as powerful as p2 550.
I run my i3 at 160 fsb (3.5) overclocked so the ram is running at 1600. It feels snappier than the 630 propus I had overclocked at 3.1. I also got a used i3 530 with msi board for $100 recently from the original owner. But sadly, those frys combos are gone now. I also bought my i3 combo new for around $100 from frys.