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Upgrading my current build

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April 3, 2012 4:33:10 PM

Hey, with the new Ivy Bridge CPUs coming out and my current build not performing as well as I'd like, I've been wondering what I should look into for upgrades.

My current build:

ASUS M4A79T Deluxe AM3 Motherboard

AMD Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition

XFX HD-687A-ZNBC Radeon HD 6870 Black Edition 1GB

G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600

CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W

Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST31000528AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"

HITACHI Deskstar 7K1000.D HDS721010DLE630 (0F13180) 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5"

ASUS 24X DVD Burner Black SATA Model DRW-24B3LT

Rosewill DESTROYER Black Gaming ATX Mid Tower PC Case


After doing some research, I was wondering whether it would be better to upgrade my CPU or GPU; however I am leaning towards upgrading the CPU. I was thinking of upgrading my CPU and mobo to a a i5-2500K and LGA 1155 mobo, or perhaps waiting until the new Ivy Bridge CPUs release. However, I am mainly looking for upgrade potential, and I am wondering how much life the 1155 will have left in it after Ivy Bridge releases. If I would be better off upgrading my GPU, would the 6970 or 7870 be good choices?

Also, if I upgrade my motherboard, will I have any problems with Windows? I currently have Vista Ultimate 32-bit, and I've tried to find a definite answer on whether I'll need to reactivate it and if changing my motherboard would cause any problems.
a c 136 B Homebuilt system
a b à CPUs
April 3, 2012 6:40:44 PM

Hard to answer your question since you dont mention what you want to do with your computer .

Changing your mb and processor wont improve gaming performance a lot . Changing your graphics card might allow you to run games at much higher details , but again the information you havent supplied is critical to a meaningful answer . What resolution is your monitor?

If your copy of windows is an oem copy its not going to install legally on another computer with a different mb . If its retail its fine , but you should replace it with a 64 bit copy anyway .

IB will be current for a year , just like every other intel processor family
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April 3, 2012 8:17:52 PM

I do a lot of gaming on my PC, and my monitor's native res is 1920x1080, which I run all my games in.
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April 3, 2012 8:32:32 PM

Outlander's question is a good one, and it sounds like you primarily are a gamer. In what way is your current system not performing as well as you would like? Are you not able to play games at the settings you want? What games are you playing?
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April 4, 2012 12:18:17 AM

I'd just like to be able to play the games I have at higher settings, or with their current settings at a better framerate. For example, Total War: Shogun 2 can run on medium/high settings with a fairly stable framerate of 35-50fps, but it doesn't do so well in larger battles, slowing to a crawl of 10-20fps (especially with higher AA settings, which I have set to MSAA right now). I'm likely to upgrade pretty soon, I'm just wondering what the best choice would be considering my current build.
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April 4, 2012 4:13:59 AM

AM3 is pretty much a dying chipset (if not dead already), I would recommend switching over to Intel and get I5 - 2500K. Also, upgrade the RAM to 8GB and if your buying the i5 - 2500k, get a good motherboard that supports PCIe 3.0 and the newer ivy bridge processors for future upgrades.

If you want to stick with your current build, I would upgrade the RAM to 8GB (if your going 64 bit windows that is)

Edit, should also mention that the Intel I5 processor is better for games than what AMD has out now.

Edit 2 (yea getting tired), I had the AMD Phenom II X4 955 BE processor just prior to getting the i5 and I was experiencing stuttering, sometimes long load times for games, and I had to lower the settings on games as well. Just gonna say that I don't experience those problems now.
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April 4, 2012 4:28:27 AM

You will get the greatest immediate increase in FPS by upgrading your GPU. But like clutz says, upgrading your CPU to a 2500k is a great investment, and will prolong the life of your system compared to your 965.

But if you're looking for an immediate FPS boost, I would upgrade your GPU, then consider a CPU/motherboard upgrade later for Ivy Bridge. And in the meantime, overclock your Phenom, if you haven't already. It's super easy.
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April 4, 2012 12:57:40 PM

Alright, I figured switching to 1155 would be a good idea. However, to save some cash, I think I might wait until Ivy Bridge comes out and see how it performs compared to the 2500K before making the upgrade, I'm not planning on upgrading until May anyway. Thanks for the help, everyone.
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April 4, 2012 1:01:29 PM

Best answer selected by PirateGuy.
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