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Will my Athlon II x4 640 processor bottleneck the GTX 560 TI?

Hi all. I am upgrading my PC for Battlefield 3. However, only recently i realized that the Athlon x4 II 640 isn't really a great CPU, even my mom's I3 550 is better. When i bought it, i was a newb to PC's and all i though was "oooh its a quad core it must be amazing". Although I have used systemrequirementslab and it tells me that my CPU meets recommended settings, its only basing that judgment off of the number of cores i have. Since i just got a GTX 560 TI (haven't installed yet) i was wondering, would such a high-end GPU be bottlenecked by my CPU? If so, im just gonna return the GTX and buy a lower end card, since there's no point in me paying for all the extra performance when it isn't even gonna be used. I'd rather not have to upgrade my CPU also, as i don't have much money and i bought this CPU only a few months ago, so it'd be a huge loss for me.
Any help would be appreciated!
14 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about will athlon processor bottleneck
  1. At low resolution yes but high no!
  2. really? can you explain to me how that works? Also, I have an I3 550 processor downstairs on another desktop which i can replace with my Athlon x4. Should i do it for BF3? Or is the X4 actually better for BF3 since it has 4 (weak) cores?
    According to this site CPU matters alot. Lots of benchmarks are done, and the FPS difference between my processor and higher end ones using same GPU and on same game can be as big as 100% difference...I thought CPU doesn't matter :(
  3. The quad is better! Monitor resolution is important part of the equation since at lower resolutions the CPU has to work harder to keep up with the card, higher resolutions the card slows down and it is easier for the CPU to keep up (simplified).
  4. For a game like BF3 the Athlon would be a much better choice as it is threaded for more cores.
  5. keep the quad core i was running a dual core in the beta and you do not want to go through what i did
  6. yummerzzz said:
    For a game like BF3 the Athlon would be a much better choice as it is threaded for more cores.

    But doesn't the I3 550 have 2 "imaginary" hyperthreaded cores? When i did sys requirements lab on the downstairs PC it met the recommended BF3 settings of QuadCore, despite being a dual core. So technically, the I3 550 has same number of cores, except its individual cores are alot stronger and it has an L3 cache of 6 MB, so wouldn't it be much better? Also, from Anandtech benchmarks, the I3 always scores higher in FPS than the Athlon ii x4. Correct me if im wrong but are you sure the Athlon will do better at BF 3 with its weak cores in comparison to the I3 550?
    Also, can someone tell me how much does having a high end CPU matter? Like say if i upgraded to an I7 right now (which i wont) will i get a HUGE increase in FPS?
  7. bump. can someone answer my last comment pls?
  8. Best answer
    The problem using anands benchies is, the i3 540 was benched when games were not using more than 2 cores. Its hyper threading is not very efficient and no where close to real cores. The hyper threading was hugely improved in the second generation i3s(like 2100). So, for BF3, your X4 is better than i3 540, and also, it wont severely bottleneck your 560 ti. You need not worry. :)
  9. It will not bottleneck as much, but it's quite surprising you spend that much on a video card but skimp out on cpu. I would've spent $20 more and get a Phenom2X4 and overclock it as high as you can.
  10. the "imaginary" cores on a i3 are only 15% the power of a real i3 core, the athlon is better for modern games
  11. Yeah ... you are ew-scrayed. I'll take the 'new' uninstalled GTX560 TI off your hands for $100, and you can buy a lesser card 'more' suited for that Propus quad.


    (that's sarcasm)

    Not sure what motherboard or clock-speed (or resolution) you are running but I just put together a 'cheap' gamer with an Asus motherboard and 'unlocked' 450 X3 Rana for a bud and his family. It's fearless - LOL - I want to keep it!

    You should be dandy - stop worrying and enjoy your gaming.
  12. Best answer selected by ericdude88.
  13. I have the 640 matched up with a hd 7970 , I have experienced no bottleneck at all.
  14. This topic has been closed by Nikorr
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