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Picking the best CPU for my board

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January 16, 2012 5:53:00 PM


My situation is this:

I have a motherboard/mainboard that was purchased for me by a previous employer, despite my request for something a little more powerful. The problem I am having with it (besides being a little 'dated') is that they also refused to get me the best CPU and highest amount of RAM that was possible for this board - essentially making it virtually useless for the type of work it was intended for; web & graphic design.

Long story.

So, I am attempting to make the best of it for now, and upgrade the CPU and RAM as well as I can. I am willing to spend a few hundred - in lieu of just getting a new system all together. Although, it may come to that. I'm still debating, and that is why I am looking for help.
My question is, what would the best CPU I could get for my MB?
MSI 785GT-E63 AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 785G HDMI ATX AMD Motherboard
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Also, obviously it is hard to find RAM for these 'older' MBs but I think I have found what I want, but am not certain it's exactly the right Memory;
G.SKILL 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800 (PC2 6400) Desktop Memory Model F2-6400CL5D-8GBPQ
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Any help or suggestions? Oh, and I realize some of you will suggest just getting all new system with MB/CPU/RAM - but please refrain; if that's what I wanted to do, I'd just do that (and still might anyhow).

Thanks ahead of time.

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January 16, 2012 7:18:24 PM

If my a couple hundred, you mean 200, then i would suggest this
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If it's just web and graphic design then a phenom ii X6 1045T (or even a high end quad core) would be much more than suffice and is about $80 cheaper. Although it may be a bit harder to find (sorry i can't find it, i'm not familiar with american sites)
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January 16, 2012 7:48:33 PM

ChosterF said:
If my a couple hundred, you mean 200, then i would suggest this
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

If it's just web and graphic design then a phenom ii X6 1045T (or even a high end quad core) would be much more than suffice and is about $80 cheaper. Although it may be a bit harder to find (sorry i can't find it, i'm not familiar with american sites)


Thanks, I'll take a look at those. I know it will probably be a little more than I'd want to pay, no matter what. I have noticed the older stuff - older being just a few short years - seem to cost more comparatively than a lot of newer stuff (which still seems like an odd thing to me), and certainly much harder to find.
I hate to have to build a whole new system, because I really don't want to start all over again.
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January 16, 2012 8:08:35 PM

Unfortunately there is no longer support info for that board on the MSI site, so I could not determine what CPUs it would take. Most 785g motherboards can run the newer AM3 processors with a BIOS update. About the only way i can think of is to determine the date of your BIOS from the post splash screen. It will be somewhere ear the top. The do a little Google and or Wiki homework to determine processor release dates. If the processor is before the BIOS, you might be OK.

I would probably avoid the 125watt AMDs unless you have the motherboard manual and it lists them. Many of those motherboards will not support above the 95watt processor.

That is also an insane price to pay for ram considering you could get a new motherboard and 8gb DDR3 for less. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... , http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

This mother board is microATX as opposed to your current ATX board. The only real difference is it will only handle one video card. I can vouch for the quality as I have one running my HTPC.

If you do need dual card capability, then this would be a better option. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Either of these motherboards should handle any AMD processor out of the box with the possible exception of the new Bulldozer FX series. Those might require a Bios update, but you could use the old CPU for that .

And just to throw it out there, if you live near a Microcenter, they have excellent deals on processors. I got my quad core AMD for $59.99. I then added a $10 cooler because the stock AMD cooler was a little whiny. Just check the drop down at the top of the page to see if you have a nearby location. Might find a mother board and ram deal also which would save shipping time. http://www.microcenter.com/index.html

I can certainly appreciate trying to make what you have work, but that would just be a case of throwing good money after bad.
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January 16, 2012 8:45:25 PM

tlmck said:
I can certainly appreciate trying to make what you have work, but that would just be a case of throwing good money after bad.


Thanks, I appreciate your diligence and feedback. I have some listings of the CPUs for the board at home (I'm at work now), and will attempt to compair them based on your suggestions.
I'll also take a look at those other boards and think about it some more. And as far as I know, we do not have a Microcenter nearby or within reasonable distance (Atlanta, which is 5hrs away).
You summed it up pretty well, though - it'd most likely be better just to start over with a new MB/CPU/RAM combo. I figured it might come to that, I just didn't want to admit it without researching it first. I just got confused and lost on how to tell what processors were better than others, so I've been asking.
Unfortunately, I'd also likely have to purchase a new Windows 7, since the licence was a 1 install only, and was purchased by someone else - I don't even have have the original disk. So, it comes down to upgrading the whole system, I suppose. I always have reservations about having to migrate my whole system all over again, and therefore I resist it as much as possible (I get ill just thinking about the process and al that can go wrong). Change is undeniably inevitable... I just like to be certain it's necessary first.

Again, thanks.
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January 16, 2012 9:52:01 PM

So, I guess a supplement question would be; now if I were going to upgrade my MB & CPU ... how well does Windows 7 migrate to a new configuration? I kind of have a vague idea on the answer, but I've heard it's much easier than it use to be.

I will probably just go ask this over on another topic; gotta keep the forum nice and tidy.
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January 16, 2012 10:56:15 PM

13thgeneral said:
I will probably just go ask this over on another topic; gotta keep the forum nice and tidy.

In that case would you mind choosing a BA so this thread can be closed. :whistle: 
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January 16, 2012 11:37:37 PM

Best answer selected by 13thgeneral.
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January 16, 2012 11:39:03 PM

Quote:
to answer your question about the CPU compatability.
here:
http://www.cpu-upgrade.com/mb-MSI/785GT-E63.html
the list stops @ the 1090T but I do not think the 1100T was released when this list was created.
with thew latest BIOS update odds are you can run the 1100T.
that's the best for your intended usage but if this was a gaming unit then it would be the 980BE.

as for the RAM it can run DDR2 1066 is the max and I have noticed a difference in 800MHz and 1066MHz
for I have had both.
it's better to only populate two RAM slots on the mATX AM2+ boards but the RAM you selected will work
it's just there are better options.



Thanks, this at least addresses AND answers my original question with the best relevant suggestions.
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