This will be a rather lengthy explanation, but I want to get your opinions on the best way to upgrade my current system. I've been following the forums for a while now, and trust and respect your advice. Here we go:
Last summer I decided to make the transition from Mac to PC. I do quite a lot of video capture/editing and I also want to be able to live stream/record live console/PC game play. The hardware and software required to do that on a Mac were simply out of the question, so I put my Macbook Pro and 24" Cinema LED on eBay.. and it sold in less than 12 hours.. I wasn't expecting to be without a computer so quickly, so I went and purchased a pre-built (GASP!) computer from a big box store that I thought had decent specifications 9 (Mind you, this was before I knew anything about PC components or builds):
i7 950 Quad Core 3.07 GHz
Pegatron 2a86 Mobo (HAHA)
Radeon HD 6450 (LOLOL)
While it does have a decent CPU and Ram the GPU, MOBO, PSU, and Case all need to be upgraded to really be able to play/record/stream games and edit/render videos properly. Learning from my mistake and discovering the joy of building a custom rig, I started doing research and familiarized myself with everything I would need to upgrade. Here is where you guys come in:
Should I stick with the X58 chip set and upgrade the other (basically all of the other) components, or should I start fresh with a Sandy Bridge build? Some things to consider would be where are we in the life cycle of new tech - Will the i7 950 be enough to last until the next generation? If I did stay with the X58 and upgraded to say an Ivy Bridge system next year, what sort of resale value would my current system have? The options are literally endless, so if you were in my position would you upgrade piece by piece and wait for the next big release or simply start over now with a Z68 Sandy Bridge system?
If you have any additional questions regarding my intentions or needs please don't hesitate to ask. I've already priced out possible builds in both scenarios and am curious as to what your opinions and advice on the situation would be.
I'm not sure about the resale value of my current system. I have a new Samsung SyncMaster 23" LED and the stock HP keyboard and mouse that could go as a complete set, or I could just sell the tower. Ideally I'd like to use the money earned from my current setup towards the purchase of a new build -- aka a second 7970 or SLI 6 series nvidia cards *crosses fingers* -- I don't really have a need for two systems.
I'd sell the complete system for $750 -- $500 without the monitor.
Your suggestions are sounding more and more like the right way to go. The tech landscape is really wide open and there are simply too many variables -- especially if Ivy Bridge is as good as advertised. Performance wise the 950 is fine for now, and the good thing about waiting is I'll only have more options!
Is a Corsair 850 Professional Series enough power for 2 7970's? I know they consume much less power than the GTX580s. Going Radeon? Crossfire? This is completely new territory
With the Intel® Core™ i7-950 you are in good shape on the processor for a while yet. That upgrading the video card would give you the best performance increase you can get along with maybe a SSD as a boot drive.
Thanks for all of your input, it looks like I've got some decisions to make. It's going to be hard to just upgrade a few things, but I think it will be worth the wait in the long run. I didn't realize Ivy Bridge was so close
For now, I will upgrade the PSU to an 850W Corsair and pull the trigger on one 7970. I feel like once I have those, I'll want to try some OC'ing (which will require a new mobo and CPU cooler) and then that will lead to wanting a new case for better airflow and then that will lead to an entirely new computer LOL. But I'll try to hold off
For arguements sake what X58 mobos should I take a look at. I know the ASUS line is quality. mATX and ATX boards fit in the nicer Corsair cases? Ex. 600T 650D 800D?
pointless trying to upgrade that system. other than a new gfx card. the cpu wont bring any real gains over what you already have. seriously m8 you wont need to upgrade that system for nearly 2 years till haswell arrives.
any upgrade other than the gfx is just throwing money away for very little in performance gains not even 10 percent in most cases.
adding a new motherboard well thats debatable as it doesnt really bring any performance gains but may add stability and upgrade ability. ram well you could go faster but you will see little return for your money performance wise...
nah m8 i would say stick with your current cpu and build on that. and in 2 years get the next best intel part.