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What component to upgrade?

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Last response: in Systems
May 30, 2012 3:14:53 PM

I have a gaming Pc I built about a year ago. It performs well and runs most things I throw at it on respectable quality levels but I feel like I need more power, I do record while playing games so Processing power Is probably something that deserves an upgrade.

So I'm looking for suggestions as to what I should upgrade, where my biggest bottle neck its or maybe ways to maximize the performance of my existing system.


CPU: i5-2500 quad-core, 4 thread, with a slight overclock from 3.9 to 4.21 GHz
RAM: 8Gb (2x 4gb) of ddr3 1600Mhz G-skill sniper series ram
MB: asus RoG Maximus IV Gene-z microatx SLI compatible motherboard
STORAGE: 64Gb crucial M4 SSD 6 Gb/s Boot drive (I tried some slight optimization following some guide that helped)
1TB 7,200 rpm Hitachi 3.5" HDD (most programs and large files are here with the exception of a select few games that earn SSD status.)
GPU: 1GB EVGA Nvidia GTX-550ti

Other thoughts and questions:
-I have sli capabilities but I dont know if that is worth it compared to selling the 550 and maybe getting a better card?
-is it worth investing In a better CPU, since ivy is out a sandy i7 could be cheaper soon. maybe one that I can over clock?
-I have only owned Nvidia cards in the past (9500GT, 450gtx, 330m GT, and gtx550ti) how do amd/ati gpus compare for performance and price.
-I would prefer to keep my motherboard because I bought it recently and also i am fond of the design style because it matches my pc's aesthetics
-on the matter Of CPUs if that is worth upgrading how big a difference would an i7 k make in performance?(like video encoding or rendering?)

Thank you In advance for any help

More about : component upgrade

May 30, 2012 4:56:53 PM

your pc sounds pretty good. i wouldnt upgrade the processor unless you are editing video, folding or doing heavy CAD work (in my honest opinion i5 is more than enough for a hobbiest/budget workstation anyway - i7 if its your job day in day out).
cpu great, ram, enough, mobo good, all storage is good.

gpu is the only part that isnt too good.

any of the following are a decent upgrade:

GTX 690, GTX 590, GTX 680, HD 6990, HD 7970, GTX 580, HD 5970, HD 7870, HD 7950, GTX 295, GTX 480, GTX 570, HD 4870 X2, HD 6970, HD 7850, GTX 470, GTX 560 Ti, GTX 560 Ti 448 Core, HD 4850 X2, HD 5870, HD 6950
June 1, 2012 2:13:41 PM

Any of these cards In particular that you have owned or can give insight on? Im very much considering a gtx680 but The price is a bit steep. Do you know how the XXXXHD cards compare? Also If I buy another gtx and keep the 550ti I currently have could I use SLI?
Do I have to have 2x gtx 550 for sli, or could I use like my 550ti and another more powerful card?
June 1, 2012 3:46:35 PM

which PSU do you have?

what is your budget for the new GPU?