I was just looking around some CPU charts and noticed how badly my QX6700 appears to have dropped down the pecking order - I've had it for c 5 years, but it's been excellent and still seems to do a good enough job.
I've added more memory, changed the PSU, HDDs and graphics cards in the past to keep it 'up to speed' but I think the whole system is now a bit long in the tooth, and noisy. I'll be keeping my 22" monitor for now (1680 x 1050) but I think everything else needs to go.
What advice would you give (as a decent gaming rig - not enthusiast) for a machine that primarily plays games, usually all-singing, all dancing DX11 where possible. I am literally clueless as to where to start as it's been so long since I built a system from scratch (new board, cpu, fan etc). I'm more than confident building it, it's just knowing which components to start with where I'm currently overwhelmed byt the choices - at the time I built this rig, it was pretty much top of the board spec.
My current spec is:
- Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700 (2.67Ghz), running at 2.9Ghz (multiplier 11 x 2.67Ghz), with some fancy cooler fan (no liquid cooling)
- MSI 2746 - i975X chipset
- Dual channel 6GB (PC2-640, 4 x 2GB dimms)
- Nvidia GTX 460 (1GB)
- 2 x Samsung 1TB drives (e-sata)
- 1 x Seagate 500GB drive (e-sata)
In terms of re-sale of my old system and to part fund the new one, would it be better to sell as one machine (minus the HDDs of course) or as separate components?
I just moved from a Q6600 w/8GB DDR2-800 and 2xWD 500GB Caviar Blue to a Phenom II 965BE@3.9Ghz w/8GB DDR3-1333 (low latency), 2xCrucial M4 64GB in RAID0 with the Caviars in RAID1. Kept the 6670 GDDR5 as my screen has not changed (1280x1024 CRT). Performance is much, much better, especially in games and application loading times.
My suggestion? Go with a quad-core i5, as no Phenom will be a big leap vs. a 2.9Ghz C2D, and run the lowest latency DDR3-1600 kit you can get. Hyper-threading support is a non-issue for gaming and general use on a quad-core. Above 8GB won't net you anything performance wise, so I'd go 8GB, not 4GB (too little RAM) or 16GB (too high latency). An SSD will bring the most noticeable improvement. Get a single 128GB drive (or 256GB if you can afford it). Depending on your system, you may or may not replace the PSU and GPU. If your GPU currently drives modern games smoothly at your supported resolution, I'd spend the money on the larger/faster SSD instead of a GPU+PSU. Personally I'd recommend Crucial, Intel, and Samsung. Moving to 64-bit Windows 7 will net you a small gain as well if you're not already running it, and will be necessary to use all the delicious RAM.
As far as DX11 goes, it is slightly better, but won't make a big difference. If you do go DX11, re-use the PSU driving the Geforce 460 and install the best your PSU will handle (probably an AMD 7850 or a Geforce 560Ti). The Q6700s are netting $100-$150 on eBay right now, the other components I'm guessing much less. The GTX460 might get $90-$100.