At B&M Microcenters, they are having a sale on Phenom II X6 1055T 2.8GHz + Motherboards. I can get this [http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml... and this http://www.microcenter.com/single_product_results.phtml... for a mere $158. I currently have a Intel e7200 2.53 Ghz dual core and was going to hold out and buy a i5 2500k next year when I could find another sale for the i5. But this deal looks good too. What do you guys think? Should I hold out or jump on this? How does this hex core CPU hold out against the i5? I'm sure I'll see an improvement if I upgrade to this AMD CPU, but I'm afraid that an i5 is that much better and should wait.
As for the motherboard I'm fine as it is simple. I'm not going to crossfire, and I think my e7200 is bottlenecking my 6870, hence wanting to upgrade. Only think I would like is usb 3.0. If i get a usb 3.0 pci express card attachement, is this essentially the same thing?
I should also add that I am not a hardcore gamer. My 6870 is a recent purchase, but that was only for Skyrim which I play on occasion. I'm in grad school so I don't forsee myself playing games often. I'm more looking into a general boost in performance overall.
I'm guessing you're gaming, since you speak of bottlenecking a 6870 (which you certainly are). If this is the case, then a 1055t doesn't hold up against the i5; the i5 is actually a better value, killer Microcenter deal notwithstanding. I would look for a Microcenter 2500k/mobo combo; I don't live near one, but I hear that they have good deals. If you've gotten this far on your current CPU, you might save your pennies and wait for Ivy Bridge. It all depends on how desperate you are and how big you budget is.
For gaming there really isn't anything that stands up to the 2500k right now, so if you want the best cpu performance then it will definitely be your best bet, but the CPU alone costs more than this X6 cpu, board, ram and cooler would.
Keep in mind that unless you are going to be running two or three video cards on a a couple of 2560 or 1920 monitors then the differences will be minimal between the two. Going from 150 FPS down to 135 really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.
Sorry I should have added that I am not a hard core gamer (made the edit in original post). I only got the 6870 for Skyrim, which I only play on occasion. I'm more looking for a increase in performance overall.
if you're not doing hard core gaming then that looks like a great deal. the 6 core will be more than enough for your 6870 and will keep you happy for years to come. most people here will recommend saving for the 2500k as it does outperform anything AMD can offer but for everyday use and light gaming the 1055t is a good choice. it seems as if you aren't as much of a computer nerd as the rest of us here are, so you probably wouldn't notice the performance differences if you were to save up for the 2500k anyway (most people don't, they only judge on benchmarks). at this point it should be whats easiest on your wallet and that deal seems too good to pass up. i would jump on it now while you have the chance
I would wait for the cash to get a Sandy Bridge, or wait until April for an Ivy Bridge.
In most cases you may not even experience a difference between what you have and what you want. The Phenom specs out better in multithreads than your e7200, but for most things they will feel similar. An SSD would make more of a difference.
It's not a bad deal and you will a good performance increase, but you are unlikely to use the 5th and 6th core unless you have programs that can use that my cores. Or you are running some CPU intensive programs at the same time. See below for benchmarks of the e7200 vs the X6 1055T: