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Is this a good gaming PC?

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December 14, 2010 7:55:32 PM

Hello everyone. It wasnt long ago since I last did a major computer upgrade, but I've managed to somehow cough up a bit of spare money :) 
So I am about to order these parts, but I wanted to double and ask you guys what you think. Tell me if you think I should swap one of the components for something different/better.

Motherboard: M4A89GTD PRO (crossfire ready)
CPU: Phenom II x4 965/970 hopefully OC to 4GHz
RAM: Corsair XMS3 DDR3 1600MHz CL9 2x2GB
Graphics: 2 x HD 6850 in Crossfire
PSU: Thermaltake Toughpower 650w (I already have this)
CPU heatsink: Scythe Katana 3 (already have this as well)

So does this sound good?
Also, is a x4 965 easily capable of 4GHz, or should I go with a 970?
Thanks

More about : good gaming

December 14, 2010 8:08:23 PM

Hello

Everythink looks good.

Yes they both overclock the same. I'h seen people posting they managed to overclock to 3.7-3.8 safely. So with a little bitt of work you should be capable of achieving 4GHz with no problem :D 

Also a like the GPU you picked ;) 

Good luck with your built and ENJOY :D 

Dave
December 14, 2010 8:09:35 PM

CPU: Swap it for a X4 955 and save some money. It's basically the same chip, so you can overclock it to roughly the same levels fairly easily.

RAM: I'd pick up some CAS Latency 7 sticks. G.Skill's Ripjaws are excellent.

GPU: I'd consider a single 5870 instead (or a single 5970). You'd get high enough performance right now (the 5870 can max out any game at 1080p resolutions), and leave yourself room to upgrade. I'm not a huge fan of the 6xxx series, as they're kind of weak for the extra money.

PSU: If you didn't already have the Thermaltake, I'd recommend a 750W-850W unit from Corsair, Antec, SeaSonic, Silverstone or XFX. They've got higher quality units. The higher wattage would be useful to support the higher end GPU I'm recommending.
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December 14, 2010 8:17:36 PM

I've actually already got a 955, but its the C2 revision, and I cant get it past 3.6GHz. Also, have you seen the 6850 crossfire reviews? They're excellent, two 6850s are on par with one 5970, they scale very well, use less power, heat and cost less. So I'm pretty much decided with two 6850s. Although thermaltake arent the most popular brand of PSU, they're still very good, and 650w is more than capable of powering the system. But yeah, I might go with RAM that has lower timings.
December 14, 2010 8:21:11 PM

I find it hard to believe 2 6850s are on par with 5970.
December 14, 2010 8:35:37 PM

I see what you are saying but they only used one game for a benchmarking. I would like to see more.
December 14, 2010 9:02:39 PM

The benefit of the 5970 is that you can overclock it a lot higher than a Crossfire setup. The 5970 at stock is two 5850s, but it's actually dual 5870s. You've got a lot of extra headroom there. In addition, if you go the Crossfire route, you've eliminated an upgrade path. If you get a 5970, not only will you get amazing performance right now, and you'd still have the ability to drop in the second one later and extend the life of the build by a good number of years.

Also, not every game will support Crossfire, so for some games you may be limited to using a single one of the fancy cards you've bought. Your performance will drag to a halt in those games.
December 14, 2010 9:29:49 PM

Wait, tomorrow is HD 6950/6970 launch date.
December 15, 2010 12:18:43 AM

mosox said:
Wait, tomorrow is HD 6950/6970 launch date.


+1 for this.
December 15, 2010 6:13:36 AM

christop said:
I see what you are saying but they only used one game for a benchmarking. I would like to see more.


No they didnt, at the bottom of the page there is a drop-down list for different games (you probably missed it)
December 15, 2010 6:16:29 AM

MadAdmiral said:
The benefit of the 5970 is that you can overclock it a lot higher than a Crossfire setup. The 5970 at stock is two 5850s, but it's actually dual 5870s. You've got a lot of extra headroom there. In addition, if you go the Crossfire route, you've eliminated an upgrade path. If you get a 5970, not only will you get amazing performance right now, and you'd still have the ability to drop in the second one later and extend the life of the build by a good number of years.

Also, not every game will support Crossfire, so for some games you may be limited to using a single one of the fancy cards you've bought. Your performance will drag to a halt in those games.


The 5970 does use crossfire, it just doesnt use two PCI-E slots. In a game that doesnt support crossfire, the 5970 will do badly as well. And I can always just sell my two 6850s if I wanted to upgrade.
December 15, 2010 9:43:43 AM

mosox said:
Wait, tomorrow is HD 6950/6970 launch date.


I've looked at the bechmarks for these new cards, and they seem to be a bit of a fail. The 6970 loses to the GTX 570 in most games
December 15, 2010 11:20:49 AM

1000FPS said:
The 5970 does use crossfire, it just doesnt use two PCI-E slots. In a game that doesnt support crossfire, the 5970 will do badly as well. And I can always just sell my two 6850s if I wanted to upgrade.


No it doesn't. Conceptually, yes, but not in practice. The 5970 isn't going to become half of what it is in games that don't support Crossfire.

It's also completely worthless to say "I can just sell XXX". You can do that with anything. The point here isn't to NEED to sell stuff to get the performance you want, it's to buy the performance to start with. Also, no one knows what the value of any piece of technology is going to be at any point down the road.
Anonymous
December 15, 2010 1:52:54 PM

i think going with a 5970 is your best bet
December 15, 2010 3:52:31 PM

You should get a new Radeon HD 6970.

When you decide get a second and put it in crossfire it's the second best xfire/sli setup available, barely being beaten by sli GTX 580's. It will also cost a heck of a lot cheaper too, and use less power.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/4061/amds-radeon-hd-6970-...
December 15, 2010 3:55:51 PM

I don't think your power supply would handle the crossfire cards, 650 watt would be cutting it very close.
December 15, 2010 5:20:15 PM

@amk09: I'm failing to see how the 6970 at $370 is a better idea. Yes, once you Crossfire it, it's more powerful than the 5970 (barely), but it'd also cost $270 more. Why wouldn't you just spend the extra $100 over the 6870 and get the 5970?
December 15, 2010 7:36:47 PM

The 5970 is only $470? Wow, I didn't realize that.

Do you think a Phenom II x4 955 would be able to push 2 5970's if he crossfired in the future?

Also, from the benchmarks I have seen crossfire 6970's beat the 5970 pretty soundly. Even crossfire 6950's beat it. But as you said, they should, as they would cost more.

I'm just weary about the 5970 because I've heard about driver issues and other issues as well, because its a dual gpu card. Then again, I have no experience with it so I'm not sure.
December 15, 2010 7:58:03 PM

Any CPU would hold back dual 5970s, so there's no way around that. Perhaps Bulldozer won't, but it's unlikely.

There are always going to be driver issues with any card. They come and go, so that shouldn't really be a factor.
December 15, 2010 8:05:01 PM

amk09 said:
The 5970 is only $470? Wow, I didn't realize that.

Do you think a Phenom II x4 955 would be able to push 2 5970's if he crossfired in the future?

Also, from the benchmarks I have seen crossfire 6970's beat the 5970 pretty soundly. Even crossfire 6950's beat it. But as you said, they should, as they would cost more.

I'm just weary about the 5970 because I've heard about driver issues and other issues as well, because its a dual gpu card. Then again, I have no experience with it so I'm not sure.


Two 6850s beat the 5970 in most games, just look at the link for the benchmark results that I posted earlier
December 15, 2010 8:07:00 PM

Sorry guys, but no amount of convincing is going to stop me from getting two 6850s :) 
My CPU is probably not good enough for anything better than two 6850s, so when I next upgrade, I might as well replace the whole system
December 16, 2010 7:00:36 PM

Bump
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