To Upgrade or Not to Upgrade

My current build is as follows:

ATI 4870 512mb
Intel Q9550 @ stock 2.83 GHz
4gb DDR2 800 MHz RAM
640gb 7200rpm HDD
1680x1050 res monitor (I will either upgrade to 1920x1080 soon or invest in Eyefinity)

My goal is to play BF3 and Skyrim comfortably at max settings. So my plan was set: purchase a Noctua cooler and OC my CPU to 3.8 GHz, buy another 2gb's of RAM, and replace my aging 4870 with a ATI 6950 2gb, which I would flash to 6970 specs. I am straying away from Nvidia because my mobo doesn't support SLI but it does Crossfire, allowing me to get another card down the line (or would you rather purchase a faster, single GPU solution? Micro-stuttering has me a bit worried). I was also considering an SSD, but seeing all the problems related to them at the moment I am hesitant.

Well now I read this: http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=23158

And I no longer feel comfortable pulling the trigger when the 7000 series is just around the corner. Problem is, I will miss playing these games in all their glory for a few months to come :(

What would you do in my situation? A friend of mine told me to buy a 5000 series card in the meantime, but I'd rather save the money and put it towards a totally new card.
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  1. Upgrade your GPU, upgrade your RAM to 8GB DDR3 1600MHz, OC your Q9550 to 3.59GHz with stock cooler+voltage(Stock cooler should be 2 inch tall for it to cool it down...).............................. IDK what mobo you got but get a DDR3 LGA 775 MoBo($200) and get a GTx 560TI($200) and 8GB 1600MHzjavascript: validform(this);($60)...

    New Video Card will be for PCI-E 3.0(For full advantage, get PCI-e 3.0) so it's best to get 560 TI now than waiting for GTx 600 series or ATI 7000 series...

    EDIT: If you want eyefinity, get 6950)
  2. upgrade now .. !! the 6000 series is the same .. believe me ;)
  3. yes, it's worth to upgrade i would suggest hd 6850 later cf it to defeat a 6950 2gb.your current cpu is stronger too.but what about your psu? need at least 650watts
  4. my gamer........ q9550/8gig DDR2-800/6950 2gig ........ all stock. Plays everything so far fine. Showing it's age and will have to upgrade the majors in 1-2 years. I had a 5850, don't waste your time there. No need to flash to 6970 speeds. You're like me. kinda stuck in the middle of things. I'd upgrade the video card and carry it over to my next build.
  5. There's no guarantee the HD7000 cards will be a particularly better value for the money, especially at launch.
  6. legendkiller said:
    Upgrade your GPU, upgrade your RAM to 8GB DDR3 1600MHz, OC your Q9550 to 3.59GHz with stock cooler+voltage(Stock cooler should be 2 inch tall for it to cool it down...).............................. IDK what mobo you got but get a DDR3 LGA 775 MoBo($200) and get a GTx 560TI($200) and 8GB 1600MHzjavascript: validform(this);($60)...

    New Video Card will be for PCI-E 3.0(For full advantage, get PCI-e 3.0) so it's best to get 560 TI now than waiting for GTx 600 series or ATI 7000 series...

    EDIT: If you want eyefinity, get 6950)

    I don't want to buy a whole new computer lol, I just wanted to upgrade.
  7. jyjjy said:
    There's no guarantee the HD7000 cards will be a particularly better value for the money, especially at launch.

    That's true, plus I'm hearing that they'll be PCI-E 3.0? My mobo doesn't even support that. Can they even be used on a PCI-E 2.0 mobo?
  8. Yes, they should be fine on a 2.0 board.
  9. If I was you, the only thing I'd change is the graphics card. I recently upgraded a computer that wasn't as good as your existing one and I regret it. I wish I had just spent my money on graphics.

    You're going to need a new graphics card anyway so why not start there and see if it does the job.

    I also read abot micro-stuttering but I'm not convinced it's all that noticable. I had a 560ti SLI setup for a while and I couldn't see anything. The 560ti were prone to stuttering according to the article I read too.

    In regards to the 7000 series cards, there's always a newer better card around the corner. Can you really wait three months to start slaying infinite dragons?

    Go for the 6950 and then if you're not happy, OC your CPU. Then if you're not happy flash the 6950 to a 6970. Then if you're not happy crossfire it. Then if you're not happy seek medical advise.
  10. Dang, you are like in the same position as me. I have a Q6600, 4GB RAM, ATI HD 5770. I have decided to wait and build a new system for the following reasons...Ivy Bridge and HD 7000 series are about to come out, and SSDs are about to get cheaper next year.

    I think the best option for you is to get a CPU cooler(which you could spend however much on because it could be used for future systems, Noctua is about to come out with new coolers at the beginning of the year I think, fyi http://www.futurelooks.com/computex-2011-video-coverage-noctua-shows-off-potential-new-cpu-coolers-and-the-most-scientific-fan-youll-ever-see/ ) and OC to like 3.2 or something. Then get the games and see if it is bearable to play on some of the medium/low settings for just a couple of months until HD 7000. If it is not, upgrade to the ATI HD 6950 and don't bother with the 7000s.

    Also maybe figure out when you plan on building a new computer...next year...2...4 years later? If it is soon, you probably don't want to dump a lot more money in your current pc unless you are going to use the component in your future pc, so the more RAM probably not worth it, but a graphics card no matter what will probably be.
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