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Will my Phenom 2 960t Bottleneck the GTX 660?

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October 21, 2012 3:07:39 AM

Will my Phenom 2 960t Bottleneck the gtx 660?

Specs:
Phenom 2 X4 960t OC'd to 3.8ghz
GTX 550 Gigabyte Cylcone II
4gb RAM DDR3 1333
A880g motherboard
500 Watt PSU

It might be important to note that I have a 1680 X 1050 monitor. Before you tell me to buy a 1920 X 1080, I might be in a transitional upgrade phase, so I might have to buy parts incrementally. First, pretend that a better GPU is a good buy and I have a good monitor. Second, what effect would a screen like that have on the bottleneck?

Now, you're probably about to say, "why would you buy a $300 video card and match it up with a $120 cpu?"

Listen, it wasn't really part of my plan either. Actually, my specs were sort of a pilot to enable me to at least PLAY current games on acceptable settings. It just needed to WORK. I was supposed to bring things up to speed a few months later, hence only 4gb of RAM.

I had planned to upgrade other parts first, and replace my CPU farther down the road as games tend to be slightly more GPU bound. Therefore, I needed to extend it's life as long as possible. Take my crappy board for example. All it has are the essentials. Any cheap board would have done the job, but this had core unlocking. Sadly, I think my extra cores were disabled for a reason, but you understand my strategy here.

I WAS going to exchange my 550 for a 560, but then the 600 series came out. I was also informed that the 560 would only give a slight increase in performance. I disagreed, but wouldn't it be like spending $400 for a 560? Not very appealing. And the card after that is the 570, and I think it makes more sense to own a 660 if I am to spend that much.

As of the next few months or year, I might be in "transition" mode. As I won't be able to change everything at once, SOME if my parts probably won't sync perfectly with each other.

So with my OC of 3.8 GHz, what might be the extent of the bottlenecking? I'm braced for a long list of mixed answers.
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October 21, 2012 3:47:47 AM

Bottlenecking is a bit overrated IMO. You would have to do a fine comparison at lower resolutions to have bottlenecks that might be noticeable. Your setup will be just fine to be honest. Will it "bottleneck"? sure why not. Will it cause an adverse effect, nope.
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October 21, 2012 3:58:03 AM

Silly question, but why not go with a 7850, instead? It's cheaper and faster. The 660 is crippled by the bandwidth limitations imposed my nVidia.
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October 21, 2012 4:24:22 AM

egilbe said:
Silly question, but why not go with a 7850, instead? It's cheaper and faster. The 660 is crippled by the bandwidth limitations imposed my nVidia.

As I understand it, the 7850's higher bandwidth comes into play at higher resolutions and the like. Exactly what res does it actually become prominent? If it's higher than 1920 X 1080 than I think I might stick my the 660. I'd rather spend money on components first and then monitors; what use is a monitor without good hardware?

I do however, understand the counter-point of "what use is good hardware without a good monitor?". I know it's valid.

So what it kinda comes down to is "Is the 7850 strong enough to run at resolutions of 2560 etc.?" Well obviously it COULD, but I'm not sure it could pull 60fps with all the eye candy turned on.

I'll have to study up on their performance a little more later, but if the card cannot handle those resolutions, than what use is the higher bandwidth?

http://www.hwcompare.com/13141/geforce-gtx-660-ti-vs-ra... <= Link to comparison of two cards

I will admit to that I have always favored Nvidia cards, with Physx being a plus an' all. It always seemed that more games were optimized for Nvidia hardware than AMD, but I'm not certain.

Heck, I might have gotten all my facts wrong for all I know. I'm not rich, so it would be nice to be able to nab a 660, but I might end up getting my first AMD card too after all.

Anyway, back to the real topic.
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a c 186 à CPUs
October 21, 2012 4:36:39 AM

HWCOMPARE!?

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!
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October 21, 2012 4:40:25 AM

amuffin said:
HWCOMPARE!?

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm aware it isn't completely accurate. It was just for a general estimate.
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October 21, 2012 9:57:07 AM

I ran that CPU unlocked to an X6 and OC'd around your figure with a GTX670 and the bottleneck was not significant..... you will be fine.

As to Nvidia/AMD I'm an Nvidia fan as I enjoy drivers that work, the gimped bandwidth on the 660 is unlikely to bother you
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October 21, 2012 10:43:53 AM

Your CPU is fine
The 660 is the better/faster card in most games that I have looked at when using your resolution.
To understand the issue better read this http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/balanced-gaming-pc-overcl...

In short your planned upgrade really has no down side. Your CPU will be ok to push the new GPU at your resolution and it will be equally fine or maybe better at 1920 X 1080 should you choose to upgrade to a higher resolution monitor.
From a performance point of view as well as for overall enjoyment of your gaming experience I would urge you to make the monitor upgrade to 1920 X 1080 your next priority after the GPU.
Maybe go to a local shop if possible and see the difference first hand before you buy ? You may be ok as you are, its a subjective thing at the end of the day different people have different preferences, you may not see the benefits of the increased image quality as being quite as important as others do.

Hopefully the link I have supplied will help you see the benefits of the higher resolution on a hardware level if nothing else.

Mactronix :) 
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October 21, 2012 12:04:48 PM




Anand's bench is useless as far as I'm concerned, they use different resolutions and different GPU's most of which are really old now, too old to be relevant in my opinion.

Just saying :hello: 

Mactronix :) 
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October 21, 2012 1:59:05 PM

@Macro

Not really, unless you consider the 7850 old and the GTX 680 old.

Was comparing the 7850 and the 660, so the OP could see actual benchmarks, rather than theories.
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October 22, 2012 2:07:58 PM

have you thought about a HD 7870 sometimes you can find them for $199 on newegg.com
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