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AMD Phenom II 955 vs this i3 2120

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March 2, 2012 5:14:03 PM

Hi guys, need a little advice. I'm building my 2nd gaming pc, I'm on abit of a budget. I dont want to surpass 550$, so I'm wanting to squeeze everybit I can out of my money. I'll be mostly playing MMO's like SWTOR and Guild Wars 2. I dont know every componet I'll use in my machine yet, however my graphics card will be a Geforce GTX 460, 550ti, or a Radeon 6790 I believe.

So to my question now, I'm looking at 2 cpu's for gaming.
AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition Deneb 3.4GHz Socket AM3 125W Quad-Core Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

and
Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz LGA 1155 65W Dual-Core Desktop Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I have been unable to find any comparisons between the two to help me choose. I currently use an AMD Phenom II 955 in my machine, I trust AMD but I am also hearing that this little Dual Core is a beast for the money.

More about : amd phenom 955 2120

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March 2, 2012 5:26:26 PM

I wouldn't recommend either. Get an i3 for low end gaming machines, they are much better processors and carry very little increased cost over AMD chips. That little bit extra cost will get you a much faster processor.

The current Intel chips are so much better than AMD chips that, for the first time I'm aware of, AMD currently gets no recommendations whatsoever in Tom's monthly Best Gaming CPUs for the Money article.

Unless you're planning on recycling your motherboard, I don't see any reason to use an AMD chip over Intel at any price point right now.

Edit: AMD's APUs are actually quite nice compared to Intel's offerings at a similar price point, but these are useless for gaming.
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March 2, 2012 5:29:18 PM

So of the two you would recommend the i3 2120 then I take it. I'm also looking at an i5 2400, but I dont know if I can stay at my budget with since on newegg it is 189$
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March 2, 2012 5:32:51 PM

If you have a 955, there isn't much of a reason to upgrade to a 965 or the 2120, unless your actually doing a full 2nd build rather than upgrading.

Also, if you have access to a microcenter, they have some of the best deals around, both on intel and AMD.

As for the I3 vs PII, you will get spammed with Intel reviews from this website showing its superiority in Havok software games, wich isn't always the case.

http://alienbabeltech.com/abt/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=23615
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March 2, 2012 5:37:59 PM

Oh I apologize, let me clear that up. This will be a 2nd gaming PC for my wife, we game together. I'll be upgrading her from a crappy little HP that has had a little upgrading over the years. I WONT be upgrading from my current amd phenom 955
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March 2, 2012 5:42:48 PM

If you can get to a microcenter, or have family that can buy it (actually you can buy it and have them just pick it up) and mail it to you. http://www.microcenter.com/specials/promotions/AMDbundl...

The 8120 with either the free gigabyte board or the $219 AS rock 990FX are the best 2 options there.
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March 2, 2012 7:05:15 PM

i3 is better for gaming i think, I have one and i was suprised how fast it is for not being a quad.
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March 2, 2012 7:10:46 PM

noob2222 said:
If you can get to a microcenter, or have family that can buy it (actually you can buy it and have them just pick it up) and mail it to you. http://www.microcenter.com/specials/promotions/AMDbundl...

The 8120 with either the free gigabyte board or the $219 AS rock 990FX are the best 2 options there.

the problem there is an 8 core 8120 is slower for gaming than a core i3 2120. There is no reason to buy an AMD cpu for gaming any more.
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March 2, 2012 7:16:25 PM

Hi,

I think you can also consider the AMD FX 4170 Black Edition (4.2 GHz and 8 MB L3).
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March 2, 2012 7:56:39 PM

Recent TomsHardware benchmarks showed the i3-2100 without overclock handily outperforming the 955 overclocked to near 4Ghz in gaming applications. The 2120 is a slight improvement over the 2100, just as the 965 is a slight improvement over the 955.

Yes, Intel is just a superior CPU for gaming at the moment. Since there's virtually no difference in price, the Intel chip is the clear winner.

This is strictly for gaming, though. There are plenty of other applications that would benefit more from the 965's 4 cores, causing it to outperform the i3's two cores.
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March 2, 2012 7:58:21 PM

I'd take anythng over the FX for gaming including possibly a 486 lol. I have a 4100 so base that on my experience.

For the OP if i was building it my choices would go

i5 2500k (if you can stretch it rules the roost now and has upgrade potentiol on the socket)

Phenom II (960T) paired with an AM3+ mobo though this potentially has little upgrade potential (unless piledriver pulls it off but don't hold breath). It does however OC very well, possibly unlock cores (960T - 1605T) and if your on a budget you will get a more featured mobo to match it than any Intel

Then finally i3.

Then a Hamster in a wheel with a pocket calculator AND THEN finally a FX snoozedozer.
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March 2, 2012 8:33:59 PM

iam2thecrowe said:
the problem there is an 8 core 8120 is slower for gaming than a core i3 2120. There is no reason to buy an AMD cpu for gaming any more.

Obviously. http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1741/14/

Bottom of the chart must be better
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