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Is a 660ti worth the upgrade ?

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August 18, 2012 5:31:17 PM

Hey

I was looking at the specs of the 660ti and wondering would it be a worthwhile upgrade for my current pc or would it be better me upgrading the cpu first?

My specs:
intel i5 650 @ 3.2ghz
6gb ddr3 ram 1333hz
sapphire 6870

In terms of budget I'd say around the £280 region although it could easily be pushed further if needed. The types of games I am/will be playing are:

Battlefield 3 (i play on low as its clearer but i needed atleast 60fps or its got to be close to the region)
The Witcher 2
guild wars 2

In terms of performance i don't mind the graphics as long as it reaches 60fps so will it be worth upgrading to a 660 ti or upgrading my mobo/cpu first then gpu at a later date?

More about : 660ti worth upgrade

August 18, 2012 5:43:54 PM

Hmm...I think I would upgrade the CPU to start with. Probably to a i5 2500k or 3570k?
August 18, 2012 5:49:12 PM

newbie1337 said:
Hey

I was looking at the specs of the 660ti and wondering would it be a worthwhile upgrade for my current pc or would it be better me upgrading the cpu first?

My specs:
intel i5 650 @ 3.2ghz
6gb ddr3 ram 1333hz
sapphire 6870

In terms of budget I'd say around the £280 region although it could easily be pushed further if needed. The types of games I am/will be playing are:

Battlefield 3 (i play on low as its clearer but i needed atleast 60fps or its got to be close to the region)
The Witcher 2
guild wars 2

In terms of performance i don't mind the graphics as long as it reaches 60fps so will it be worth upgrading to a 660 ti or upgrading my mobo/cpu first then gpu at a later date?


I'd wait out this generation of graphics. I mean you're hardware is still very capable. If the GPU isn't cutting it, the better upgrade would be another 6870 in CrossFire. But i'd give overclocking a shot.
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August 18, 2012 5:52:19 PM

Nah, not worth the upgrade. As Dapake said, spend money on getting a new CPU. Get the 2550K if money is an issue (2500k is being discontinued) OR 3570K OR 3770K (i7) if money is not an issue.
August 18, 2012 6:04:01 PM

If i were you i would buy a cpu cooler OC your cpu to 4ghz + and OC your current video card. use that rig till next generation of cpu/gpu's come in then upgrade. with a good oc on both those components can last a fair bit longer. i still have my i5 760(4ghz oc ) running with a 570gtx( 850mhz oc ) and it has no problems with anything.
August 18, 2012 6:45:42 PM

So in terms of gaming performance getting a new cpu and waiting for the next gen gpus would be my best option?
August 18, 2012 6:46:05 PM

I personally feel your best option is to save your money and wait for next gen and OC what you have to make it last. if your hell bent on buying something i would say mobo/cpu upgrade is your best option.
August 19, 2012 5:40:27 PM

anyone like to suggest a good cpu/mobo as i haven't really kept up with the ivy bridge processors I'm thinking on the 3570k but then again I'm open to suggestion
August 20, 2012 2:31:03 AM

newbie1337 said:
anyone like to suggest a good cpu/mobo as i haven't really kept up with the ivy bridge processors I'm thinking on the 3570k but then again I'm open to suggestion


Ivy Bridge is an efficiency upgrade of sandy bridge, not really offering any performance upgrade, especially for the enthusiasts. However the Intel HD 4000 graphics engine is a big upgrade, but since most enthusiasts and gamers use dedicated graphics, the upgraded graphics engine in Ivy Bridge is moot. Also, overclockers prefer Sandybridge over ivy bridge because it's artificially capped,

Quote:
It could be the fact that Intel decided to use thermal paste instead of the usual fluxless solder (you'll need to have a solid grasp of Japanese to understand the original article, or use Google Translate) between the CPU die and heat spreader.

Using a box knife (we do not recommend doing this at home), the author of the linked story pried the heat spreader away from the chip and was able to replace the cheap paste Intel used, trying out both OCZ Freeze Extreme and Coollaboratory Liquid Pro thermal pastes. The OCZ offering allowed for 1.55 V at 4.9 GHz, while the Coollaboratory material ramped up to 5.0 GHz, operating stably. This was accomplished even with air cooling, although the author did not use a stock heat sink, opting for a Thermalright Silver Arrow SB-E instead (Ed.: this information was pulled from the original Impress PC Watch site with Google's rather shaky translation of Japanese). If there is a smoking gun in this equation, we think this is it, especially considering that the researchers at Impress PC Watch managed 20% more efficient cooling.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ivy-bridge-overcloc...

With that said, if you aren't trying to squeeze every last drop of performance, Ivy Bridge is still a decent overclocker. However, overclocked, I suspect Sandy Bridge could offer more performance.

On the egg, the 2500k is about $10 cheaper than it's Ivy Bridge counter-part. I'd go for the 2500k, although it's much higher than what I got mine for back when z68 just came out. ($220 vs $190). Also, don't cheap out on the motherboard. get something with Z68 or Z77 chipset.
August 20, 2012 2:48:49 AM

jerm1027 said:
Ivy Bridge is an efficiency upgrade of sandy bridge, not really offering any performance upgrade, especially for the enthusiasts. However the Intel HD 4000 graphics engine is a big upgrade, but since most enthusiasts and gamers use dedicated graphics, the upgraded graphics engine in Ivy Bridge is moot. Also, overclockers prefer Sandybridge over ivy bridge because it's artificially capped,

Quote:
It could be the fact that Intel decided to use thermal paste instead of the usual fluxless solder (you'll need to have a solid grasp of Japanese to understand the original article, or use Google Translate) between the CPU die and heat spreader.

Using a box knife (we do not recommend doing this at home), the author of the linked story pried the heat spreader away from the chip and was able to replace the cheap paste Intel used, trying out both OCZ Freeze Extreme and Coollaboratory Liquid Pro thermal pastes. The OCZ offering allowed for 1.55 V at 4.9 GHz, while the Coollaboratory material ramped up to 5.0 GHz, operating stably. This was accomplished even with air cooling, although the author did not use a stock heat sink, opting for a Thermalright Silver Arrow SB-E instead (Ed.: this information was pulled from the original Impress PC Watch site with Google's rather shaky translation of Japanese). If there is a smoking gun in this equation, we think this is it, especially considering that the researchers at Impress PC Watch managed 20% more efficient cooling.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ivy-bridge-overcloc...

With that said, if you aren't trying to squeeze every last drop of performance, Ivy Bridge is still a decent overclocker. However, overclocked, I suspect Sandy Bridge could offer more performance.

On the egg, the 2500k is about $10 cheaper than it's Ivy Bridge counter-part. I'd go for the 2500k, although it's much higher than what I got mine for back when z68 just came out. ($220 vs $190). Also, don't cheap out on the motherboard. get something with Z68 or Z77 chipset.



As for the overclocking I don't plan on overclocking to extreme levels but to just push the cpu to its full potential and although I have no doubt the 2500k is a great processor Id rather get the newer technology as interms of benchmarks the 3570k scores higher than the 2500k

August 20, 2012 4:12:30 AM

newbie1337 said:
As for the overclocking I don't plan on overclocking to extreme levels but to just push the cpu to its full potential and although I have no doubt the 2500k is a great processor Id rather get the newer technology as interms of benchmarks the 3570k scores higher than the 2500k



If you're overclocking, those benchmarks are irrelevant. First off, the Ivy Bridge CPU is clocked higher than the 2500k, and it does have refinements in IPC, though nothing ground breaking. So with an IB and SB CPU at the same clocks, the IB is going to be just a smidge faster. With Sandy Bridge, you can get significantly higher stable overclocks vs ivy bridge, more than enough to offset the IPC difference. Basically, what I'm saying is Sandy Bridge has more potential performance than Ivy Bridge, despite the newer technology. If you are going to run stock speeds, or a mild overclock to moderate overclock, go with Ivy Bridge. But if you are going to overclock aggressively (>4.2GHz), Sandy Bridge is the better choice.

I've gotten my 2500k to 4.6GHz on an ok cooler (Xigmatek Dark Knight) without breaking 70c. Even with beefier coolers, it would be very difficult to get Ivy Bridge stable at that frequency. If I had say a Zalman CNPS9900 or a Thermaltake Frio, I could get up to 4.8GHz.

Quote:
even below 4.5 GHz, our Ivy Bridge-based Core i7-3770K began thermal throttling. That is to say it reduced its clock rate in order to bring its temperature down. In other words, our overclocked -3770K was already running too hot, even at its default voltage setting.

Core Temp 1.0 RC3 reports that our Core i7-3770K reaches 90-100°C (194-212°F) internally when it's overclocked to 4.5 GHz. No wonder the chip's thermal monitor tripped, throttling the CPU. This phenomenon dropped the effective clock rate of our chip to approximately 3.5 GHz, corresponding to the CPU’s nominal frequency.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ivy-bridge-overcloc...
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