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Lynnfield to Ivy Bridge upgrade?

Hey all,

My current rig is from fall 2009 and I'm considering an upgrade for gaming. I'm wondering if a whole rebuild using Ivy Bridge CPU and corresponding board, GPU, and RAM is warranted at this time, or if just upgrading my GPU to one of the 660's or something would be effective? I have really enjoyed the Lynnfield chip and not sure it's time to move on yet...

My main concern at this point is also that my motherboard (3 years old) might not be able to handle the 660 properly due to PCI-e version, or other new components like a SATA III SSD. Also not sure if my 750W PSU will handle the job were I to get new components.

Current System:
CPU: Core i7-860 Lynnfield
Mobo: ASUS P7P55D LE LGA 1156 Intel P55 ATX Intel Motherboard
GPU: EVGA 896-P3-1171-AR GeForce GTX 275 Superclocked Edition 896MB 448-bit DDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Supported Video Card
RAM: OCZ Platinum 8GB (4 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Dual Channel Desktop Memory Model
PSU: PC Power and Cooling S75CF 750W EPS12V SLI Certified CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Power Supply

Thanks in advance for any advice! :D
12 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about lynnfield bridge upgrade
  1. No way!

    The i7-860 is still a great CPU.

    Just get a new GPU and overclock!
  2. Best answer
    Your cpu is fine up to a 680 or 7970, although you could always oc it. It is still pretty high end relative to other cpus. Your mobo is fine, you can use any single gpu without any loss in performance. You don't have sata 3 but that doesn't justify a mobo upgrade, it won't even affect gaming or even windows/other software load times. The only place you'll really see a difference is in synthetic benchmarks and what's the point in that? Your psu is also plenty of power, it can handle 2 660ti (although your mobo can't sli). I'd suggest going with a higher gpu, the rest of the system can handle it.
  3. Short term buys would be the SSD, processor, and motherboard. Long term would be the graphics card. Everything else can be recycled from your previous nahalem build.

    If you are fine with your current computer, then why upgrade? You said you have enjoyed it so far, so there really isn't much reason to upgrade.

    You should be able to add the GTX 660, as far as I know, the PCIe standard hasn't changed since 2009.
  4. If u motherboard support pcie 2.0, then it probably wont suffer any perfomance loss from it, just the rest depend on ur cpu clock rate

    I would suggest upgrading to gtx 670,680, radeon 7950 or 7970

    The next full upgrade probably in year 2015-2016
  5. Thanks everyone. Reason I was thinking to upgrade is that I usually go ~3 years on a system, and in some games (SWTOR, BF3, GW2) I'm starting to see framerate and choppiness issues in some areas. I had also (ignorantly) assumed that the 6-series GTX cards were too fast for my Mobo (for example, SATA III isn't an option so I have neglected to get an SSD yet for that reason). So figured I'd be looking to do a whole new system anyway.

    But good to know that the i7-860 is still considered relatively high end among processors. I'll just upgrade the GPU to a 660 or 670 something for now which I imagine will solve many of my framerate issues in current games, and stick with this CPU/Mobo combo until substantial performance issues come up.

    On the same subject, is 8GB of RAM still considered "good" for gaming? I'm sure that with the new GPU (going from 812MB of VRAM to 2GB of VRAM) will show improvement, but if you think I'd see improvement in swapping out my 4x2GB for 4x4GB of the same speed, let me know.

    Thanks again!
  6. More than 8gb makes no difference, games only get to 4gb.
  7. 8GB RAM is fine, no need to upgrade that. Just buy a better graphics card and you will be very happy with the results.

    Your power supply is good too, it is easily capable of running 2 graphics cards.
  8. bumnut53 said:
    8GB RAM is fine, no need to upgrade that. Just buy a better graphics card and you will be very happy with the results.

    Your power supply is good too, it is easily capable of running 2 graphics cards.


    There really is no need to go out and do a whole new build. All you have to do is overclock the CPU now and get a better graphics card.
  9. I don't even think oc the cpu is necessary, the i7-860 is a pretty good processor. Oh and you should still get an ssd. A sata3 ssd will work on a sata2 port, they are backwards compatible.

    You will see a speedy improvement if you hook it up to your OS and favorite games, even if it is in a sata2 port.
  10. Zelotes202 said:
    for example, SATA III isn't an option so I have neglected to get an SSD yet for that reason

    While SATA2 may not be fast enough to pull the maximum bandwidth out of an SSD, the SSD would still provide around twice as much read/write bandwidth as a conventional HDD and 50-100X faster access time which is where SSDs contribute the bulk of the Windows boot time improvement.

    So you if you want an SSD, you can already get most of the benefits with SATA2.
  11. Wow, again very helpful folks, thanks! I'll do a new GPU and SSD then and call it good!
  12. Best answer selected by zelotes202.
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