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Best upgrade for me?

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Last response: in Memory
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January 27, 2012 1:21:51 PM

I built my computer 1 1/2 - 2 years ago for gaming. I have an i5-750, gtx-460 and an P7P55d-E pro motherboard. Currently I have 4 gb of patriot viperII ram at 1600mhz and 7-7-7-20 timings. Looking at the prices I figured now is a great time to upgrade.

I haven't been in the market for components in a while and just wondering what advice you guys have to give!

any knowledge of what is important to look for in ram (is it the speed? the timings?) or where i can find easy to understand info would be great too!

More about : upgrade

January 27, 2012 1:31:06 PM

You can probably just get a newer video card. and upgrade to 8 GB of ram. Which games do you play?
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January 27, 2012 1:32:58 PM

My advice to you is wait. The new generation of graphics cards from both AMD and Nvidia are coming out soon, as well as Intel's new Ivy Bridge processors.

If you build a new machine now, you'll be a generation behind in a matter of 2-3 months.
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a c 347 } Memory
January 27, 2012 1:37:04 PM

Q - Why do you feel the need to upgrade? What's 'slow' to you? If you game increase to 8GB~16GB of RAM and the GPU...also an SSD would greatly speed things up.
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January 27, 2012 1:37:52 PM

Look at overclocking your CPU if you haven't already. Your motherboard can handle SLI, so adding a second (used?) gtx 460 is an option for you as well. You'll need to check that your power supply is capable though. 460's in SLI are in the same league as the gtx580, and recertified/used one can be picked up for under $100.
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January 27, 2012 2:17:47 PM

Yeah, exactly what Noodletoe said, I was planning on getting a second GTX 460 when I first built this so I'm going to do that when I upgrade my ram. I don't want to build a whole new machine anytime soon, just some upgrades.

Games like Skyrim tend to use up almost 95% of my ram so I was looking for more capacity, probably 8GB. I just don't know specifically what to look for in ram. I got the set I have now with timings in mind (I don't know why).
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a c 347 } Memory
January 27, 2012 3:15:32 PM

Finding matching DDR3-1600 CAS 7-7-7-20 is nearly impossible; most all are 7-8-7-24. Next, the i5-750 is a 2.66GHz CPU so I assume you set the BIOS AI Overclock Tuner -> DOCP and DRAM OC Profile -> DDR3-1600. Otherwise, CAS 7-7-7-20 is from the 'stock' 'SPD' of DDR3-1066.

That said, IMO get a fully matched set of DDR3-1600 4x4GB or 2x4GB; RAM is cheap now and 64-bit Games do benefit from 16GB of RAM. Further, >4GB or RAM requires a 64-bit OS.

RAM sets - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submi...

File-13/eBay the old RAM.
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January 27, 2012 8:21:50 PM

So if I go with the 16GB do I have to get the dual channel kit so it is compatible with my motherboard?
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a b } Memory
January 27, 2012 8:47:53 PM

Don't go with 16GB of ram. If you are using most of 4GB, then 8GB means you will be using less than 1/2 of it. I would look up the model # of your ram and buy more of the exact sames stuff.
Then add the 2nd GPU and OC and that is about all you can do for frame rates on your PC.
Only other suggestion I would have is to try RAID or an SSD to get more HDD throughput, but that just affects load times, not game performance.
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a b } Memory
January 27, 2012 9:34:55 PM

Since your board supports Sli I say get another GTX 460 to run in SLI and overclock your CPU. Get a good cooler of course :D .
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January 27, 2012 9:43:06 PM

I'll add a vote for SSD. The faster load times will make you feel your computer is faster since that's one of the most perceptible ways to measure performance.

On the other hand, Toms has a chart of CPUs organized by tiers. And the good recommendation that you don't upgrade until you are jumping at least 3 tiers because you won't be likely to feel it. It will be a 3 tier jump when Ivy Bridge comes out. I have an i7-860 and I'm planning to move to ivy bridge when it comes out.
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a c 347 } Memory
January 28, 2012 12:44:58 AM

wardy22 said:
So if I go with the 16GB do I have to get the dual channel kit so it is compatible with my motherboard?

The kits I linked above all will work with your P55/LGA 1156 MOBO.

Quote:
Don't go with 16GB of ram. If you are using most of 4GB, then 8GB means you will be using less than 1/2 of it.

If you're running 64-bit Games plus SLI then IMO 16GB (4x4GB) is a wise choice; see (note the 64-bit game towards the bottom ;)  ) -> http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ram-memory-upgrade,...
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January 28, 2012 1:00:05 AM

jaquith I still question whether he would have any benefits from spending an additional 40 bucks for 8 more gbs of ram.

If I can read graphs right the performance jump from 8gb to 16gb is essentially non existent.

by the time his system (assuming for gaming) could use that ram you would think ddr3 would be obsolete.

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a b } Memory
January 28, 2012 5:13:50 AM

The only game I would say that the extra RAM makes a difference is Crysis 2 with the high texture patch. Get the second card for SLI and OC your CPU :D 
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a c 347 } Memory
January 28, 2012 11:13:12 AM

You want to keep 'Shared Memory' 100%, that 's why you see gains or loss. It's that simple, it has nothing -- well little -- to do with the RAM used by the OS/Game. Once 'Free' is used up the system starts cannibalization of memory from Standby and the majority of Standby is 'Shared Memory' to the GPU(s) and your frame rendering becomes reduced. The affect as noted in the link can be 2FPS~35+FPS. RAM today is dirt cheap, tomorrow like HDD's or in the past RAM/Flash shortages can happen overnight.



Now as far as a few bucks for RAM, you'll very rarely see me recommend less that 12GB (LGA 1366) or 16GB (any Dual/Quad Channel) when Gaming or never less for Rendering. So IMO the OP should either SLI or replace the GPU, SSD 120GB or larger, and 4x4GB RAM. An SSD is nice for load times, but has little to no impact on FPS...though I recommend all systems have an SSD.
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January 28, 2012 2:17:37 PM

I'm thinking that I am probably going to end up going with 16GB. I can just remember 2-3 years ago when everyone was saying "no way 4GB is all you'll ever need". and on that note I will definatley be overclocking as that was my original plan with this computer (I even got a giant heatsink) but
I just never got around to it.
The graphics card is going to be tough though, right now i have an overclocked MSI Cyclone which was just deactivated on newegg and impossible to find for a good price anywhere else. I could just get any GTX 460 and my card would underclock to its speeds right?
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a c 347 } Memory
January 28, 2012 7:09:50 PM

Most folks weren't using 64-bit OSes and 64-bit Apps too much (3) years ago. The cost of a 4x4GB or even 2x4GB kits i.e. 4GB/stick were very expensive. Even a few months ago a 4x8GB was $2K but now it's <$300!!! So deciding between say 4x4GB and jump or two in GPU series made the decisions more complex. Most system builders knew the benefits of more RAM. If the 4x4GB kit was $400 and a 4x2GB kit was $150 then I too would be advising 4x2GB + better GPU ;) 

In SLI simply use MSI Afterburner and set the card(s) to the same speeds, but get the same vRAM on each aka 'series'. No (2) GPU's performs identically so the slowest 'wins'.

I haven't a clue what exact model you have, try a different online store, or use Google shopper -> https://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C1GPEA_en___US371&so...
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