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$600 upgrade, some advice please.

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May 18, 2012 4:16:23 PM

So I got about $600 extra cash to do an upgrade. I thought it was originally going to be around a grand, so I need to know what the community thinks is more critical.

Originally I was going for a 2600k, a Intel 520 SSD (240GB) and a new Radeon. I now know that's unrealistic. So, what ideas does everyone have?

Currently:
Gigabyte GA-Z68XP-UD3P
Core i3-2100
16GB Mushkin RAM
Dual HIS 5770's in Crossfire
Seagate Barracuda 500GB primary, 1TB WD Green backup

Computer uses: web, Office, light animation, light photo manipulation with Gimp, light video editing in future, a lot of DVD and BluRay backups for the kiddos movies.

I'm still thinking the 2600k even with IVB released. The 2700k is the same price and 3770k is $40 more. Is there any good reason to sport the 2700 or 3770? I have considered the 2500k, but recently found out students and staff get free Autodesk software, so I just downloaded both 3ds Max and Maya and think I'll benefit from the hyperthreading. I don't game much, but I'm also no pro, so 3D animation is not top of my list. How well does the 2500 hold up against a 2600 in real life instead of benchmarks? Anyone with real world experience?

Is there any SSDs that are making a good name other than the Intel for cheaper? I read about a new(er) Marvell controller being used that is giving Sandforce a run for the money. Advice on this would be great.

Lastly, how well will the 5770s perform compared to a 6000 series GPU?

Sorry this is so long winded, it is the last upgrade I'll get for a year or so and want to maximize the purchase.

More about : 600 upgrade advice

a b à CPUs
May 18, 2012 4:57:08 PM

scottiemedic said:
So I got about $600 extra cash to do an upgrade. I thought it was originally going to be around a grand, so I need to know what the community thinks is more critical.

Originally I was going for a 2600k, a Intel 520 SSD (240GB) and a new Radeon. I now know that's unrealistic. So, what ideas does everyone have?

Currently:
Gigabyte GA-Z68XP-UD3P
Core i3-2100
16GB Mushkin RAM
Dual HIS 5770's in Crossfire
Seagate Barracuda 500GB primary, 1TB WD Green backup

Computer uses: web, Office, light animation, light photo manipulation with Gimp, light video editing in future, a lot of DVD and BluRay backups for the kiddos movies.

I'm still thinking the 2600k even with IVB released. The 2700k is the same price and 3770k is $40 more. Is there any good reason to sport the 2700 or 3770? I have considered the 2500k, but recently found out students and staff get free Autodesk software, so I just downloaded both 3ds Max and Maya and think I'll benefit from the hyperthreading. I don't game much, but I'm also no pro, so 3D animation is not top of my list. How well does the 2500 hold up against a 2600 in real life instead of benchmarks? Anyone with real world experience?

Is there any SSDs that are making a good name other than the Intel for cheaper? I read about a new(er) Marvell controller being used that is giving Sandforce a run for the money. Advice on this would be great.

Lastly, how well will the 5770s perform compared to a 6000 series GPU?

Sorry this is so long winded, it is the last upgrade I'll get for a year or so and want to maximize the purchase.



The perfect all round upgrade for your needs


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a b à CPUs
May 18, 2012 5:10:43 PM

Uther39 said:
snip


i would believe his dual 5770's would overcome a 7770
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a b à CPUs
May 18, 2012 5:16:40 PM

dudewitbow said:
i would believe his dual 5770's would overcome a 7770



Agh i missed that he had 2 of them, in that case sell both 5770s and the i3 2100 on ebay but that money with the $140 for the 7770 and instead buy a 7870, you may even be able to afford a 7950. @ $380
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a c 124 à CPUs
May 18, 2012 5:20:31 PM

The first question I'd have is what seems slow, or what specifically would you like to improve?
You mentioned storage of movies; do you have enough disk space?
I'm not sure a single HD7770 is a worthwhile change from a pair of HD5770s, although it does give you BluRay decode. You have plenty of RAM.
You already have a Z68 chipset board, does it support SRT? If so, you could add a 60GB-64GB SSD for caching, and add another 1TB (or larger) hard disk for movies. Will you be playing games? If not, the only reason(s) to replace the video cards would be to either get BluRay decode or to accelerate your editing software, if any of it supports GPGPU processing (e.g. Stream, OpenCL, or CUDA). If the editing software does NOT benefit from GPU acceleration, a single HD6670 or HD7750 would offer you the BluRay decode. If you will play games, then you might want something like a HD6870 or GTX560, the choice also depending in part on whether either could be used to accelerate your editors. Finally, an i5 may be enough of a jump over the i3 to make the i7 not worth the price, leaving money for the other changes.
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a b à CPUs
May 18, 2012 6:52:54 PM

Let me add...

Firstly, it has to be a k series for overclocking just in case I want more power.
@jtt:
I have plenty space. If I get an SSD, I will have my 500gb Seagate, a 1tb WD and I have a old Seagte 750gb that I use currently only for backups.
My board does support SRT, but I'd rather go 180-240gb for the primary SSD for all the little 2gigs here, 2 gigs there that gets installed whenever you install programs (I tried a small primary boot and a bigger backup some time ago in the IDE days and had nothing but problems.)
I will be playing games, but I'm not an everyday player, maybe 4-5 times a month to wind down and just get lost.
My system isn't 'slow', but I want to start doing some 3D playing in Maya and 3ds, some photo converting/editing in Gimp and have 40GB of kiddo video I want to start converting to DVD/BluRay (no progam picked yet) and am realistic enough to know my i3 is sorely underpowered for those, thus the upgrade.

Does that help or is it still clear as mud :)  ? I'm *pretty* sure I'm going to go 2600k unless someone can give a good reason to replace that choice with the 2500k, 2700k or 3770k for GPU upgrade benefit (monetarily speaking). I might be able to squeeze another $100 into the equation if the benefit outweighs, or as uther said, sell the 'replaced' hardware for a 6000 or 7000 series Radeon (make it a 2 part upgrade).

My biggest unknown is SSD controllers and if I should even consider anything except the SF2200 controller and what video card will make replacing dual 5770s worth it. I don't care about heat, it's well ventilated case, an H50 cooling it and the ambient rarely gets above 70F. I also am not looking to save a few watts by replacing 2 GPUs with 1 cause it 'saves energy' (call me ungreen I guess, haha).

I guess hardware choices have just got away from me and I'm not as well versed on the newer stuff as I thought I was, cause I feel completely lost in the upgrade, and I think the dual video has me scratching my head too, since there aren't really good comparisons of Crossfired cards vs singel GPUs (like anandtech or the GPU hierarchy)
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a b à CPUs
May 18, 2012 7:24:17 PM

That should do it, with your extra 100 dollars plus the cash from your sales you will easily make it.


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