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Where's the bottleneck?

Last response: in Systems
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April 11, 2011 6:30:08 PM

Awaiting the arrival of a new system...

Core i5 2400
ASRock H61M-VS Motherboard
G.Skill 1333 DDR3 Ram 4gb
Radeon 5670 512mb GDDR5
300gb 3gb/s SATA 7200rpm HDD (perhaps different volume, but same specs)
Lite-On DVD-RW (24x or maybe 48x...not really an issue)

The HDD I realize is older and a 10k RPM or SSD would be better, but im mostly concerned with the other components (cpu, ram, gfx card).

In a previous post I upgraded from a Phenom 9500 and 3gb of DDR2. My question is, in the above system...what is going to be the biggest bottleneck? I'd assume the video card. Follow up question is, how much performance gain will I see from the new setup over the old...gaming specifically? Am I going to notice much difference in games (WoW, SC2, COD, etc...) with the new cpu/ram?

I'm not opposed to upgrading the video card again, maybe 3-6 months from now...and using the 5670 in an HTPC machine.

More about : bottleneck

April 11, 2011 7:32:01 PM

your HDD is a factor, but shouldn't decrease your FPS in games much, just load times. Your video card is the deciding factor of your system now. Purchasing anything less than a 6850 for a gaming system is a crime with the current price/performance of these cards. Purchasing a modern 1tb+ drive will give you throughput of 100+mb/sec on a 7200rpm drive, going with a 10k or ssd will give you more performance, but at a greatly increased cost/gb. Spend $150 on your video card, you will get 4-5 times the performance in games. The 5670 performs similarly to the 8800gt
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April 11, 2011 8:44:15 PM

Thanks, do you think the older system (phenom 9500) was bottlenecking the video card?

The only reason I did such a drastic upgrade was because of the price/performance of those new i5 chips and I didn't want to sink money (more ram) into an aging AM2 system. I bought that video card about a month ago for $65, and saw an instant boost in FPS/graphic level. Now I'm hoping the CPU/Ram upgrade will get me "over the hump"...I can deal with the slower HDD speeds.

Honestly, just looking to get WoW to playable levels (30+ fps) with higher detail settings...doesn't need to be Ultra or anything.
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April 11, 2011 11:56:43 PM

Even using your old CPU you would need to invest $800 into your video card before I would have even considered your CPU a bottleneck. Not saying the upgrade wasn't great, but a video card will always give you more bang for the buck. Going from a phenom 9500 to a core i5 2500 is a pretty big jump in CPU, so it will give you noticeable performance increases just not where you want them.

Here is a link to the 5670 dirt2 benchmark. Without Anti-aliasing / filtering at 1920x1200 using direct x 11 the 5670 gets around 12-14 fps.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-5670,2533...

Here is a link to the 6850 dirt2 benchmark. With Anti-aliasing set to 8x and the highest quality settings possible at 1920X1200 using DX11 the 6850 gets 40-50 fps
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/radeon-hd-6870-rade...

Cost of this card is around $170. You could also purchase a GTX 460 for about the same price if you wanted to go Nvidia.

If you are getting choppy WoW performance the easiest way to rule if its your video card is to decrease the screen resolution. I know it looks ugly and everything is squished, but is it smooth? If so then your video card is to blame.
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