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Upgrade to 965BE, SSD or new system

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February 23, 2013 3:46:15 PM

Hi,

So basically i need help in figuring out if i should upgrade my cpu or my hardrive, or just get a new system. I have a super tight budget, i can probably spend around $170-200 on upgrades or keep current set up and save up for a new system in a few months. I use this computer for gaming.

these are my current specs:
Thermaltake v3 Case
Antec VP450 PSU- 450 watt
2 x 2gb pc 5300 ddr2 ram
2 x 1gb pc 6400 ddr2 ram
phenom x4 9550 at 2.64ghz (only tested on prime 95 for 45min or so)
Aftermarket cpu cooler (ultra) with mx-2 thermal grease
k9a2 cf-v2 motherboard
23" hp monitor 1920x1080 resolution
80gb IDE WD HDD
XFX HD 7850 1gb GPU
320gb External verbatim hdd for storage

I know my gpu is getting bottlenecked by the processor but the games i play ( left 4 dead, league of legends, blacklight retribution). As of now the games run perfectly on max resolution and max settings with some exceptions, like i load kind of slow in all the games( would this be because of my hdd or processor or both?), blacklight generally runs smooth on high detail but i think it can run smoother and better (and i dont have all extra settings enabled).

What actually is slow is starting up my computer (takes a few minutes) and loading anything sometimes (rarely) get tiny lag spikes while doing normal tasks.

Basically i've done a lot of research into what i want to do, and it seems that its come down to either replacing my HDD with a ssd (crucial m4 or samsung 840) or upgrade to a phenom 965be and keep my current motherboard (and ill have almost enough to buy the ssd as well), or save up(not really im a student) and wait a few months to buy a intel-based computer. Also, i might be able to sell off my motherboard + cpu + ram for like $100 or something.

I was also wondering if i get the phenom 965be, how much will it be restricted in terms of overclocking with my current motherboard?

Oh and the 965BE is on sale in tiger direct, i can get it taxes included and shipped for 105$

Thank you so much for reading!
a b à CPUs
February 23, 2013 4:32:33 PM

I'd save my money. the machine is quite dated. the older it gets the more the hardware wears out. 6-$800 you can build a killer.

clean up and clean out your hard drive.
a c 158 à CPUs
February 23, 2013 4:45:05 PM

For the most noticeable upgrade, grab an SSD for your OS and apps, it'll blow your mind no matter how old your rig is. I highly recommend a Kingston V300 if it's your first SSD. It's super fast, pretty darn cheap and comes with everything you need (if you buy the upgrade kit) depending on your case. I put one in my aging rig (Athlon II X4 640, 12GB RAM, Windows 7) and it's just kicking so much butt. You can use your regular hdd as storage for games and such, that's what I do and it works quite well.

About your startup problem, here's a video with the Kingston with the specs posted above.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0hxthpZ7MTM
Related resources
February 23, 2013 4:54:08 PM

swifty_morgan said:
I'd save my money. the machine is quite dated. the older it gets the more the hardware wears out. 6-$800 you can build a killer.

clean up and clean out your hard drive.


The hardware does not really wear out, the software gets more complicated and runs slower but the hardware really stays at the same performance. You might loose some performance to a bloated Windows install but reformatting usually fixes it.

An SSD would help you load the games lighting fast but would do nothing for your frame rates once in the game, upgrading the CPU would improve the minimum FPS and may help SLIGHTLY with load times depending on how fast your HDD is.

If you plan on keeping that rig a few more years and your mobo is compatible this CPU would greatly improve gaming performance especially if overclocked which it could probably take 4GHz or close to.
a b à CPUs
February 23, 2013 5:14:38 PM

SSD will help your system boot faster and games load quickly, but so would a new HDD. You have an 80GB IDE hard drive. That's probably only going to peak at about 30MB/s. A new HDD with 750GB or 1TB platters can peak at 170MB/s or more. And an SSD can do faster than that with both sequential and random data. You'd be shocked at the difference, but I worry your MB (if it has IDE) has a slower HDD controller. You might not get the full potential of the drives.

CPU can increase fps or max resolution if it is truly the bottleneck. I'd take some measurements with a performance monitoring tool during gaming and see how high it is running. An X4 II 965 should be about a 50% improvement for gaming

You already have a great GPU, so I'd leave that alone for now.


You have a lot of nice components, so I don't think you need to save up for a whole new system. I think really all you need is a new MB, CPU, RAM and SSD/HDD - So like half a new system. I worry that if you buy a new CPU now, then when you upgrade you'll still be stuck with a dated AM3 CPU.

I'd probably wait and save up and buy a new CPU/MB/RAM and Drive all at once. That's maybe $300-400 depending on what you pick. If you have to pick something now, I'd get the drive because it's universal and will work with anything you pick up later.
February 23, 2013 6:06:31 PM

Okay i see what you guys are saying. I think i should get a hard drive first, as it is universal and it may solve all the loading issues making me not need the cpu upgrade.

My motherboard actually has several sata II controllers, however how much faster would a SSD run in a 3gb/s sata II controller vs HDD?
February 23, 2013 6:24:25 PM

the Kingston v300 seems to be going for 85$ (tax included). its only 64gb though, so wouldn't a m4 or 840 be better ( the m4 is $130, the 840 is $107)

$20 more for the 840 for double the size ( would this be the same speed as v300?)

$45 more for the m4 for double the space + mlc speed


It looks to me like the 840 is the best one to go with because wouldn't all of the ssds be about the same speed because ill be using them in a 3gb/s sata II controller?
a b à CPUs
February 23, 2013 6:56:18 PM

All SSD are really fast, so I wouldn't worry too much about speed, just pick one with good reviews and enough space. As an only drive, I'd want at least 240, but if you've been living on 80GB you might be fine with 128GB . On SATA II, an SSD and a good new HDD are about the same speed for sequential I/0 but for random I/0 the SSD can be literally 50-100x faster.

If you are on a budget, I might just get a new SATA III 1TB drive with single platter. An SSD is a luxury item and your real issue is that you are on what has to be a 10 year old ATA drive. I'd hate to see you spend too much and then not be able to upgrade the MB/CPU for a long time as those need an upgrade, too.

Can you download crystaldiskmark and run it on your hard drive (with 1000MB test size) and post the results? I'd like to see what you are dealing with.
February 23, 2013 7:41:19 PM


These were my results from crystaldiskmark:


-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.2 Shizuku Edition x64 (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo
Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

Sequential Read : 35.445 MB/s
Sequential Write : 41.413 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 19.445 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 20.311 MB/s
Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 0.321 MB/s [ 78.3 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 0.564 MB/s [ 137.7 IOPS]
Random Read 4KB (QD=32) : 0.509 MB/s [ 124.3 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=32) : 0.597 MB/s [ 145.7 IOPS]

Test : 1000 MB [C: 93.6% (69.7/74.4 GB)] (x5)
Date : 2013/02/23 16:40:48
OS : Windows 7 Ultimate Edition SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)
February 23, 2013 10:59:28 PM

fruti2009 said:
Okay i see what you guys are saying. I think i should get a hard drive first, as it is universal and it may solve all the loading issues making me not need the cpu upgrade.

My motherboard actually has several sata II controllers, however how much faster would a SSD run in a 3gb/s sata II controller vs HDD?



If all you are having is loading issues get the new HDD or SSD or whatever. Even on SATA II an SSD will still stomp an HDD.

If you have low framerate in games the SSD is unlikely to help as your aging phenom x4 9550 at 2.64ghz will be very limiting at that clockspeed to your newer gpu.
a b à CPUs
February 23, 2013 11:35:23 PM

2778656,4,338631 said:
The hardware does not really wear out,


you should know better than that.
a b à CPUs
February 24, 2013 12:35:35 AM

fruti2009 said:
These were my results from crystaldiskmark:


-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.2 Shizuku Edition x64 (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo
Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

Sequential Read : 35.445 MB/s
Sequential Write : 41.413 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 19.445 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 20.311 MB/s
Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 0.321 MB/s [ 78.3 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 0.564 MB/s [ 137.7 IOPS]
Random Read 4KB (QD=32) : 0.509 MB/s [ 124.3 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=32) : 0.597 MB/s [ 145.7 IOPS]

Test : 1000 MB [C: 93.6% (69.7/74.4 GB)] (x5)
Date : 2013/02/23 16:40:48
OS : Windows 7 Ultimate Edition SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)


Yeah, that's what I was expecting. Here's what my drives made in 2012 look like:




February 24, 2013 12:41:50 AM

Wow, with those speeds i guess it would make a huge difference. Im gonna go buy a 840 ssd tomorrow and see how well it works!
a b à CPUs
February 24, 2013 12:55:44 AM

It's not quite as good on SATA II, but it's still excellent. When I put this same SSD in an older SATA II system, my boots went from 2 minutes to about 30-40s. When I upgraded to SATA III, I am 12 seconds from hitting power button! The cool thing is that either way with the SSD once you log in, the computer is ready to rock. You aren't sitting there with a desktop waiting 2 minutes for the HDD to stop churning so you can even launch a browser.

Thinking a little bit more about it, If you have enough money left over after the SSD addition, I might get a 965 BE. It's a good enough processor that it should buy you another year or two and it would pair well with the 7850. As you get more money, you can upgrade to a newer AM3+ board (which still works with the 965) with Sata III and you'll double your HDD speed again and gain faster RAM with DDR3. And then finally you'll have a platform that can easily take a newer FX chip like the 8350 (or maybe steamroller by the time you upgrade) when the Phenom bottlenecks or you get a higher end GPU.
February 24, 2013 1:14:58 AM

Okay well now, i sold 2gb of ram and now i have about $190-230 to spend. So there is this combo someone is selling, and it looks like this :

Asus P8Z68-V/Gen3 Socket 1155, Intel DualCore G860 3.0GHZ 3MB Crucial 8GB DDR3-1333MHZ and WD Blue 500GB Sata3 7200 16MB for $220

That looks like an amazing deal, and i can save up to add in a 2500k whenever i want!

Or i can get the ssd tomorrow and get the be as well, and this will also be $220 in total,

Which choice you think is best?
a b à CPUs
February 24, 2013 2:26:46 AM

what do you have for an operating system?

and don't be surprised, if after you install the SSD, that your frames will not increase. because they won't.

Best solution

a b à CPUs
February 24, 2013 3:54:05 AM
Share

fruti2009 said:
Okay well now, i sold 2gb of ram and now i have about $190-230 to spend. So there is this combo someone is selling, and it looks like this :

Asus P8Z68-V/Gen3 Socket 1155, Intel DualCore G860 3.0GHZ 3MB Crucial 8GB DDR3-1333MHZ and WD Blue 500GB Sata3 7200 16MB for $220

That looks like an amazing deal, and i can save up to add in a 2500k whenever i want!

Or i can get the ssd tomorrow and get the be as well, and this will also be $220 in total,

Which choice you think is best?



That's not a bad price. I think you could buy all those new from newegg (not exact board) for about $275 or a similar setup with some sale price substitutions for about $240ish.

Phenom II 965 is better than the G860 though, so you'd just be paying to get a platform to upgrade later. I wonder if you wouldn't get more bang for the buck with the 965 and a 128Gb SSD for your existing board. You shouldn't need to pay $220 for a SSD alone.

Sandisk 128GB at newegg for $90 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Phenom 965 $85 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

February 24, 2013 10:23:26 AM

ye but i live in Canada and here the prices are awful :p  the cheapest i can get the phenom here is 102$ tax included, the sandisk is 118$ tax included (more then the 840) and i meant ssd + the phenom for $220, and i just recalculated and its actually $209 for both.

Ye i get what your saying about paying to upgrade it later but the pentium would still be better than my phenom, and i would be using that setup realistically until something stops working, so in a few years. So basically, i would actually be using the g860 for a long time before upgrading, so i think it is really viable. Also those parts im going to buy are actually all new (in packaging), according to the seller.

@swifty my operating system is windows 7 64 bit
February 24, 2013 2:17:44 PM

swifty_morgan said:
2778656,4,338631 said:
The hardware does not really wear out,


you should know better than that.
said:


Well it does but that wearing out is generally VERY slow and does not affect the performance of the components.

CPU's can last 20+ years and be fine, well beyond their normal lifespan in a PC. HDD's are supposed to be good for 3-5 years, my current HDD is 5 years old.

I have been using my PSU since 2008 and it is still going strong.

Some motherboards last longer than 10 years.

I guess what I meant was that they usually don't wear out before you would want to stop using your computer anyway because of how outdated it is, of course all part makers make "lemons" that die way sooner than they should.

Thank you swifty_morgan for also being the only one besides me to tell the OP that the SSD will do nothing for his framerate which seemed to be the biggest concern for wanting to upgrade yet most people try to talk him into an SSD.
February 24, 2013 4:04:54 PM

Okay guys i bought the intel combo and im going to go put it together, hoping for the best! Should i just use the thermal grease included with the G680 as i wont be overclocking or use aftermarket?
February 24, 2013 8:19:32 PM

fruti2009 said:
Okay guys i bought the intel combo and im going to go put it together, hoping for the best! Should i just use the thermal grease included with the G680 as i wont be overclocking or use aftermarket?


Yes just use the regular thermal grease, afaik you can't overclock non "K" Intel cpu's by much anyway.
February 25, 2013 1:59:21 AM

Okay well the 860 set up is running nice and smooth, it is noticably faster in all aspects, the game runs smoothly however im a bit worried because the cpu runs at 80% or higher useage. But i guess its fine since everything runs smoothly. Thanks for all the advice guys
February 25, 2013 2:01:03 AM

Best answer selected by fruti2009.
a b à CPUs
February 25, 2013 2:55:27 AM

It's only got 2-cores so they get worked harder! But as long as the temperatures aren't too high you have nothing to worry about.

Are you getting better hard drive speeds? As I said earlier, newer hard drives are much faster, even if they aren't SSD fast.

Glad you are getting better results! Now all you need to do is start saving for that SSD. :) 
February 25, 2013 12:11:17 PM

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.2 Shizuku Edition x64 (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo
Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

Sequential Read : 124.342 MB/s
Sequential Write : 124.239 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 40.960 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 59.363 MB/s
Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 0.578 MB/s [ 141.2 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 1.115 MB/s [ 272.1 IOPS]
Random Read 4KB (QD=32) : 0.883 MB/s [ 215.6 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=32) : 1.018 MB/s [ 248.5 IOPS]

Test : 1000 MB [C: 14.0% (65.2/465.7 GB)] (x5)
Date : 2013/02/25 9:09:53
OS : Windows 7 Ultimate Edition [6.1 Build 7600] (x64)

New results on crystalmark, and i definitely am getting better hard drive speeds
!