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I5 2500k vs i7 2600k. Worth the extra money???

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January 17, 2012 11:14:49 AM

Hey guys in need of more advice. Im building a new pc this/next week and cant decide between an i5 2500k and the i7 2600k. Obviously the i7 is more powerful but the it is about $110 more expensive than the i5. Is the money really worth the extra when i could spend the money on other components such as cooling or ram? I will be using the computer for video editing etc (after effects, adobe premiere etc) and some gaming. Thanks
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January 17, 2012 11:34:28 AM

It depends what the rest of your build looks like. What other components will you be buying alongside i5/i7?
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January 17, 2012 11:38:15 AM

well i would imagine the 2600k hyperthreading would come in usefull for video editing

less so for gaming at the moment
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January 17, 2012 11:40:57 AM

soullStream said:
Hey guys in need of more advice. Im building a new pc this/next week and cant decide between an i5 2500k and the i7 2600k. Obviously the i7 is more powerful but the it is about $110 more expensive than the i5. Is the money really worth the extra when i could spend the money on other components such as cooling or ram? I will be using the computer for video editing etc (after effects, adobe premiere etc) and some gaming. Thanks


gaming the two CPUs are pretty even, video editing and adobe show minor differences. Up to you if the differences are worth the extra cost. You can always OC the 2500k to make up the small difference between the two (then again you can OC the 2600k also)

http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/288?vs=287


January 17, 2012 11:47:34 AM

Im pairing the i5/i7 with 8gb of Kingston Hyper X 1600mhz ram with an Asus P8Z68-M PRO Z68 mobo. I will later be purchasing a GTX 560 ti gpu. If i dont get an i7 i will simply buy a after market cooler for the i5 and overclock it. Im also now wondering would an overclocked i5 (say 4-4.5 ghz) be better than a non-oc'd 2600k.
January 17, 2012 12:03:52 PM

imo go i5k...sounds like your not doing many things that will demand the "slightly" improved performance of the i7k.

I'd save the money and go for i5 and upgrade w/ ivy bridge if you wanted or put more into a gpu.
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January 17, 2012 12:05:37 PM

Well if you can afford: i7, GTX 560Ti, 8GB RAM it might make more sense to get i5-2500k, 6970, 8GB RAM.

Use the money saved from the CPU to spend on the GPU. This will give better over-all performance, especially in games.

And yes Over-clocked i5-2500k would out perform stock i7-2600k. The differences are incredibly minor other than in applications than can use hyper threading. If you don't use apps that you know for a fact make extensive use of hyper threading, and provide a real advantage, then just get the i5-2500k because you wont notice any difference.
January 17, 2012 12:06:17 PM

soullStream said:
Im pairing the i5/i7 with 8gb of Kingston Hyper X 1600mhz ram with an Asus P8Z68-M PRO Z68 mobo. I will later be purchasing a GTX 560 ti gpu. If i dont get an i7 i will simply buy a after market cooler for the i5 and overclock it. Im also now wondering would an overclocked i5 (say 4-4.5 ghz) be better than a non-oc'd 2600k.




Of course the OC'd i5 would beat the stock i7. Question is why would anyone buy a K series CPU now a days and NOT overclock it? :D 
January 17, 2012 12:15:58 PM

Okay thanks for all the great advice. I think im going to go with the i5 and overclock it. Im thinking of using liquid cooling, is that the best choice? And also i was just able to afford the i7 build -.- (have to go back to school next week so less work=less money) Would i be better off buying a cooler for the i5 when i buy the rest of the parts then save up for the gpu or the otherway round?
January 17, 2012 12:18:55 PM

soullStream said:
Okay thanks for all the great advice. I think im going to go with the i5 and overclock it. Im thinking of using liquid cooling, is that the best choice? And also i was just able to afford the i7 build -.- (have to go back to school next week so less work=less money) Would i be better off buying a cooler for the i5 when i buy the rest of the parts then save up for the gpu or the otherway round?


Depends what type of watercooling you would be getting, personally I don't recommend the corsair series because it's not proper watercooling. What is the budget you have for the cooling solution? And what case do you have?
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January 17, 2012 12:28:30 PM

For video editing, I would invest in the 2600k or better yet the 2700k where the price premium over 2600k is the faster CPU but the 2600k is much smaller than the 2600k over the 2500k. For gaming, if the budget is tight, it gets harder to justify the price increase.

For video editing, hyperthreading does come into play and that's only available on the 2600k/2700k. Video editing also benefits from more RAM and faster RAM so an investment there will have a good return on investment.
January 17, 2012 12:29:47 PM

Im setting myself around a $100-$130 (aus) budget for the cooling solution. The case i am planning to use is an Antec Three Hundred. So the corsair 'liquid cooling' isn't proper water cooling, is that bad/why? And whats the alternative? An Antec? or would a Fan cooling solution be better?
January 17, 2012 12:32:54 PM

Well if i get an i7 the budget is going to be VERY tight so i really have to be sure the extra money is worth it, i dont want to spend another $100+ on a i7 when an i5 will do and i could spend the money else where to further improve my preformance
January 17, 2012 1:01:43 PM

soullStream said:
Im setting myself around a $100-$130 (aus) budget for the cooling solution. The case i am planning to use is an Antec Three Hundred. So the corsair 'liquid cooling' isn't proper water cooling, is that bad/why? And whats the alternative? An Antec? or would a Fan cooling solution be better?


I would got with air cooling then if I were you. You have enough money for the Noctua NH D14 I would purchase that then overclock the 2600k to 4.4 - 4.7 then your laughing.
January 17, 2012 1:07:46 PM

Okay i'll go with air cooling.
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January 17, 2012 1:09:20 PM

Just get something simple and effective.

Hyper 212 = $30 and will easily cool a 4.6GHz OC on an i5

No point wasting money where its not required. The extra $70 saved from cooling could do towards 16GB RAM instead of 8GB or 1866MHz instead of 1600MHz or something like that.
January 17, 2012 1:11:27 PM

Sorry but just another question, would i be better off in spending more for liquid cooling? or is it not worth the extra $30 or so dollars?
January 17, 2012 1:12:57 PM

Okay so a Hyper 212? What temp will that cool an i5 at say 4.2GHz? (roughly)
January 17, 2012 1:17:25 PM

soullStream said:
Sorry but just another question, would i be better off in spending more for liquid cooling? or is it not worth the extra $30 or so dollars?


The corsair ones are not decent they make a ton of noise and are simply ineffective in my experience. The cheapest watercooling I would suggest would be the £160 mark. Though you need to build it up yourself.
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January 17, 2012 1:21:12 PM

soullStream said:
Okay so a Hyper 212? What temp will that cool an i5 at say 4.2GHz? (roughly)


I use a Arctic Freezer 13 CPU cooler, smaller, and less efficient than a 212+ but at the time I got a really good price on it, so I bought it.

The Freezer 13 keeps my i5-2500k at below 65 degree's at 4.6GHz (never tried pushing it further) but the fans are only at about 80%.

60-65 degree's is the standard 100% load temps for i5-2500k so anything up to 4.5GHz or so the 212+ will keep it between those.

28-33 degree's idle, 60-65 degree's load whether its at stock clocks, or up to 4.5GHz clocks with good cooling (212+ or similarly efficient cooler) CPU will stay between this 28-65 range. Give or take a couple degree's.
January 17, 2012 1:24:46 PM

Awesome!! Thanks HEAPS!! Might Be making a trip the the computer store tomorrow.. >:D 
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January 17, 2012 1:26:12 PM

If you could post a final build list just so we can double check through it, that might be helpful :) 

CPU:
MOBO:
RAM:
GPU:
PSU:
OPTICAL DRIVE:
HDD:
SSD: ??
CPU COOLER:
CASE:
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January 17, 2012 2:55:55 PM

Concur with most comments.
On HSF: Unless planning on OCing above 4.8 Air HSFs are fine. for up to 4.6 the 212 (or equivilant) is OK, for 4.6 to 4.8 get one rated in the top 10.

I5 (4 cores/ 4 threads) vs I7 (4 cores/8 threads): For gaming I5 is great, only get the i7 if you have software (and use it more than infrequently) that will take advantage of MORE than four threads.

MB: I ALWAYS recommend the Z68 over the P67s, Z68:
1) Allows for using a SSD for HDD caching, Personnally I don't recommend.
2) Allows for faster Video decoding via Quick sysc (Virtu software required).
3) AND this is why I recommend: The ability to use the Computer WITHOUT a dedicated GPU: In Initial assembly you can omit the GPU. We all know NO ONE ever puts to get a New build and get NO Video. But if the exception then you have eliminated the GPU card as a problem. If Down stream, you have a video problem, simplifies troubleshooting and if a NEW GPU card is required, you can still use the the Computer until you get the new card.
4) Advantages out wieght the small cost differencial.

ON Ram: DDR3 1600 is High enough for the I5/I7, in fact there is very little difference between DDR3-1333 and DDR3-1600 (Very few programs can use the extra speed above 1333. DDR3 -1600 is considered the Sweet spot - And it's cost over 1333 is so small. 8 gigs is fine, then upgrade later to 16 gigs if NEEDED.
January 17, 2012 10:22:28 PM

Thanks heaps everyone for the advice!
My final Build list is as follows:
CPU: i5 2500k
MOBO:Asus P8Z68-M PRO
RAM: 8GB of Kingston 1600MHz Hyper X
GPU: GTX 560 ti (Undecided on brand as will be purchased later)
PSU: Antec 520W ATX NEO
OPTICAL DRIVE:LG Blue Ray Read/Write
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 1tb
SSD: Not at the moment
CPU COOLER: Cooler Master Hyper 212
CASE: Antec Three Hundred (Changing later)
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January 18, 2012 8:28:40 AM

Nice final build, although I still cant stress enough to go for 1.5v RAM for SandyBridge CPU's in order to run at 1600MHz.

Rest of the build looks good though, recommended brands for GTX 560Ti include Gigabyte and MSI.
January 19, 2012 6:24:35 AM

Okay thanks. Bought and built the rig today. Very happy with it. Thanks for all the advice
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January 19, 2012 10:54:27 AM

Great, ENJOY
!