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I7-920, worth upgrading?

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April 24, 2012 2:00:13 AM

Currently, I run an i7-920 I bought in December 2008, with an x58 EVGA board. I haven't had any noteworthy problems at all since then, only upgrading the video card (9800gtx to gtx280 to gtx570). To be honest, this computer has lasted longer than I would have imagined. Now, I think it might be time to retire this computer. I know it still works for my primary needs (gaming), but my overwhelming desire for something new and shiny is taking over.

My question: Should I go ahead and upgrade now? I could grab an IB or SB. Or wait another year for Haswell? Will Haswell be a large step up over Ivy Bridge? My original plan, or at least what I kept telling myself was that I wasn't going to upgrade until I could get a viable 6-core or 8-core. By the looks of things, only SB-E and IB-E have 6 or 8 cores. Is Haswell going in the same direction, or will it have 6-core and 8-cores available at less than $600 (probably not answerable at this point)?

My 920 has been running at the stock 2.66ghz since I purchased it, which could have contributed to it's longevity. I believe that I could find a noticeable improvement by upgrading, which is why I'm considering it now. Just looking for some input.

Note: I'm not wanting to go full-on enthusiast with the $1000 i7-3960x or anything like that, but money is not really a concern either. So I am primarily considering a i7-3770k since the IBs are just now coming out. With the price pretty much matching the 2700k, I don't see why not. I know I could go with an i5-2500k or whatnot, but I want to keep with the i7 line (I do occasional video editing, image editing, and typically run 2 or 3 monitors with a lot of multitasking, and gaming of course).

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a c 185 à CPUs
April 24, 2012 2:20:58 AM

No. This computer is perfectly fine until haswell or infact skylake! All you need to do is overclock. There is no need to spend extra money, when you can drop that money on another 570 for sli and other upgrades. Here is a guide: http://www.overclock.net/t/538439/guide-to-overclocking...
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April 24, 2012 2:25:16 AM

you could probably stretch that system further. its a good system even by sandybridge standards. (ivybridge is more of a step sideways than forwards.) you probably want to stretch that system out as well to be honest. when haswell rolls around in a years time are you going to upgrade again, so suddenly? or just be left without the completely new architecture. ivybridge didnt really bring anything new to the table, so to buy a sandy or an ivy now is to be over a year behind already. i must stress thats a good system you have but would do much much better with overclocking.

summary: overclock your cpu and holdout for haswell
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April 24, 2012 2:25:33 AM

need to keep in mind that you will also need to upgrade motherboard since they have different socket (1366 vs 1155). Memory might be ok (triple channel vs. dual).
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a b à CPUs
April 24, 2012 2:25:37 AM

+1, first gen i7 is still a very solid performer haswell is a safe upgrade for you
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a c 185 à CPUs
April 24, 2012 2:27:19 AM

Even Core 2 Quad's are still solid performers! Intel really makes their processors very solid with upgrade-ability and performance...except for ivybridge. :p 
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April 24, 2012 2:27:28 AM

I'm considering upgrading as well, since the i5 2500k absolutely smokes my CPU, and I don't overclock. The problem is exactly that I would need to buy a new motherboard and CPU, and the fact that I have a support contract (24/7, NBD) until March of next year.
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a c 185 à CPUs
April 24, 2012 2:28:55 AM

sk1939 said:
I'm considering upgrading as well, since the i5 2500k absolutely smokes my CPU, and I don't overclock. The problem is exactly that I would need to buy a new motherboard and CPU, and the fact that I have a support contract (24/7, NBD) until March of next year.

There's your problem! Though, overclocking xeons can be risky... :ouch: 
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April 24, 2012 2:29:33 AM

^lol, then upgrade march next year
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April 24, 2012 2:41:19 AM

Like I said, money isn't really a problem. So shelling out for a new motherboard, memory, etc, was in the plan. After building a new PC, I'm not sure what I would do with this 920... so I guess overclocking it to it's last legs is a viable option for the time being instead of condemning it to the corner of my bedroom.

I have no problem with overclocking, so I'll give it a go. I currently use a CoolerMaster V8 as the HSF, which should be a good enough air cooler. I have to say though, this disappoints the "I want new/shiny things" part of me, but I can deal with it. After all, I've pushed back upgrading for about 2 years now, so I guess I can wait out another year and just go ahead and buy a GTX680 and have that hold me over.
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a c 185 à CPUs
April 24, 2012 2:42:52 AM

For your shiny, new things. Go Custom Watercooling! ;) 
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April 24, 2012 2:44:45 AM

amuffin said:
There's your problem! Though, overclocking xeons can be risky... :ouch: 


That's true, although the Xeon is D0 stepping. I'm not even sure if my motherboard supports overclocking though, since it is an OEM board. I may just upgrade next year.
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April 24, 2012 2:46:35 AM

In response to water cooling:

I will when Haswell comes along. That was also part of the plan for my next computer. I suppose most of the system could carry over to my next PC, except of course the copper block for the 1366 socket (then again, maybe it will?). Hmmm that is an idea, albeit one that I haven't looked very far into. Any recommendations on a system?
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a c 185 à CPUs
April 24, 2012 3:01:09 AM

What is your case? Though I really recommend you start a thread over in the overclocking forum!
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April 24, 2012 3:49:26 AM

Currently I have a CoolerMaster Cosmos RC-1000 that everything is in. I also bought a NZXT Phantom over Black Friday to use in a future build, so it's just sitting around waiting for the IB or Haswell. Though, I must say I'd like to pick up a Silverstone RV02, but that's not necessary for watercooling, and defeats the purpose.

I'll post something on the OC section with full specs and recommendations for a watercooling system. If all goes well, I'll just get an EVGA gtx680 that comes with a pre-fitted waterblock. I'm about to leave from work, so I'll post over there once I get home.
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April 24, 2012 8:16:27 PM

I agree with others. Wait for Haswell, get yourself a nice mobo like ASRock Extreme or Asus, which are great for overclocking. If necessary up your DDR3 RAM, which are pretty cheap now. I would recommend Nocuta NH-D14 or Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo or Corsair H100. These are very good if you want to stretch the CPU.
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April 24, 2012 8:28:37 PM

whats so special about haswell ?
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a c 200 à CPUs
April 24, 2012 8:29:56 PM

I have a 2600k w/ SLI'd 560 Ti's alongside a 920 w/ 580 ..... all OC'd to the gills ..... and outside of running 3D games and benchmarks you'd be hard pressed to know which one you were using. Yes the 560's throw a lot more fps but I cant "see" the difference between 60 fps and 84 fps.
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April 24, 2012 8:50:30 PM

SSri said:
I agree with others. Wait for Haswell, get yourself a nice mobo like ASRock Extreme or Asus, which are great for overclocking. If necessary up your DDR3 RAM, which are pretty cheap now. I would recommend Nocuta NH-D14 or Cooler Master Hyper 212 Evo or Corsair H100. These are very good if you want to stretch the CPU.

Umm, I'm not going to buy a new motherboard and air cooler (or closed water cooler like H100) for my outdated setup. If I'm going to get more ram, a new mobo, and new cooler ... I might as well just get the IB CPU on top of that, otherwise I'm just throwing away money.

The water cooling setup would be easily portable to a new Haswell setup (might need a new bracket or CPU block), so that's a worthy expense.
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April 24, 2012 8:56:30 PM

nomx said:
Umm, I'm not going to buy a new motherboard and air cooler (or closed water cooler like H100) for my outdated setup. If I'm going to get more ram, a new mobo, and new cooler ... I might as well just get the IB CPU on top of that, otherwise I'm just throwing away money.

The water cooling setup would be easily portable to a new Haswell setup (might need a new bracket or CPU block), so that's a worthy expense.


Sure...as long as your existing mobo allows overclocking, if that interests you, the water cooling or the air cooling may probably help. Please ensure it is compatible with your socket/board/case.

good luck...
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April 24, 2012 9:37:48 PM

I wouldn't put to much into the idea of getting haswell until it gets out. I am begging to think that it might not be that much faster than SB or IB but just a platform change for something else down the line. Your i7 still has a lot of speed to burn even now.
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a c 185 à CPUs
April 25, 2012 5:06:25 AM

Haswell is best for people that are running core 2 quad, skylake is for you!
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April 25, 2012 10:48:23 AM

amuffin said:
Haswell is best for people that are running core 2 quad, skylake is for you!


Do you reckon anyone using a quad-core is good to go until skylake in 2015? That's 3 years from now. Don't you think it is too far away to last? May be Broadwell in 2014 if not Haswell?
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