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E6800 Bottleneck?

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October 31, 2011 12:18:38 PM

Greetings team,

The time is nigh for me to upgrade my system. I built it about 3 years ago and it has served me very, very well. I am looking to spend as little as possible on this upgrade so I am trying to sort out what is necessary. I have done quite a bit of research myself, but it never hurts to use the experts as a sounding board. First, my current system specs:

Wolfdale E6800 OC'd to 4.2GHz
ASUS Maximus Extreme Socket 1366
Corsair HX650 PSU
Asus GTX260 968MB
30GB OCZ Vertex 2 SSD (Boot Drive)
Misc other drives for storage
1680x1050 res gaming

I know that I could use a CPU/MOBO/GPU upgrade something fierce; especially for my current BF3 and future D3 gaming needs (sole purpose is gaming). My biggest question is, is it even worth it to just pick up a 570 GPU right now or will the CPU bottleneck it too much to see any real improvements?

For $700 or so, I could get a i5 2500k, new mobo and a 570 but I am in the middle of dropping about $35K on my wedding so spending anything more than absolutely necessary may result in a castration. If I could spend only $300 on the GPU, it would be a much easier pill to swallow. I would worry about the CPU and MOBO later on; most likely once the new Sandy Bridge units are in full swing next year.

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a b à CPUs
October 31, 2011 12:27:25 PM

Honestly, i think if you OC your GTX260, you would not see much benefit going to a GTX570 for the price as you would spending another $130 for the GTX580. That would be my gpu upgrade recommendation for you.

I dont believe you would see as much of a performance boost with that though as you would with a new i5 2500k with a better aftermarket cooler and a new Asrock P67 EXTREME 4 GEN 3 MoBo. This would run you roughly $390 depending on your cooler. I would then save up for a new GTX580, or, if you want, turn to a Radeon HD6970.
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October 31, 2011 12:44:17 PM

Thanks for the quick response. I should have mentioned that I do have an aftermarket cooler on the E6800 (Artic Freezer 7 Pro), but it doesn't matter too much since I know the CPU has to be upgraded. To be honest, I hadn't thought about doing it that way.

For added info, I am Canadian and typically shop via NCIX. I'll keep an eye on their i5 2500k bundles.
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a b à CPUs
October 31, 2011 12:56:32 PM

no prob. best of luck, and congratulations on your wedding!
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October 31, 2011 1:05:35 PM

Best answer selected by Notagiant.
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October 31, 2011 1:15:05 PM

My feeling says that a GPU upgrade is going to be more noticeable than a CPU/Mobo upgrade in the sort run. On a clock-for-clock basis your CPU isn't that bad and you have a large overclock and gaming performance doesn't scale too great with cores for most games.

If you do feel that the CPU is too much of an issue (I expect you are going to be fine) you can always look for a cheap 1366 CPU on eBay once Sandy Bridge-E launches as an interim measure go to Ivy Bridge next year.
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a c 82 à CPUs
October 31, 2011 1:23:26 PM

+1 CvK01,

OP if you are BF3'ing then read the article, not much scaling with CPU power, it's all GPU.
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October 31, 2011 1:24:28 PM

How are you running a E6800 Socket 775 CPU on a 1366 board 0.o?!?
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a c 82 à CPUs
October 31, 2011 1:26:54 PM

Good spot.
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October 31, 2011 2:08:24 PM

Must be a socket 775 board. Asus never released a Maximus branded board for LGA 1366.
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October 31, 2011 3:39:50 PM

Ha! Nice spot. Wrong socket listed indeed... LGA775 is right.

I did read the article about BF3 scaling with GPU mostly. That is why my original intentions were to do a GPU upgrade first. My worry was that my CPU might bottleneck my upgrade and make it not worh my while.

Thanks for all the feedback.
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a c 82 à CPUs
October 31, 2011 4:01:06 PM

I'd really say GPU first having read that, no question really.
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a b à CPUs
October 31, 2011 4:05:24 PM

notagiant said:
Thanks for the quick response. I should have mentioned that I do have an aftermarket cooler on the E6800 (Artic Freezer 7 Pro), but it doesn't matter too much since I know the CPU has to be upgraded. To be honest, I hadn't thought about doing it that way.

For added info, I am Canadian and typically shop via NCIX. I'll keep an eye on their i5 2500k bundles.



Definitely an aftermarket cooler. That is an abnormally high overclock for the CPU and would probably melt using the stock cooler.

Even though that cpu is several generations old, with your overclock it is still very fast. With your best overclock of a 2500k you would gain 50% more cpu performance. It would be noticeable in power hungry apps such as autocad, but might not be noticeable in gaming.
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a b à CPUs
October 31, 2011 4:28:48 PM

I just want to add in that you should go for a graphics upgrade before a cpu upgrade, and I would recommend a GTX 570 over a 580 any day. Price for performance in the 580 is much worse than a 570. The 580 is about 20% faster for 50% more plus it's quite a bit warmer/more power use.

That cpu should easily be able to handle any game out with 4.2ghz clocks. Here's a benchmark:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/battlefield-3-graph...

Looking at the 2 cores on a Bulldozer@3.6ghz getting above 40fps at all times and the cores on Bulldozer being slower than Core 2 by quite a bit already; I'd say you'd be fine on BF3 and many games down the line.
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