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Next logical upgrade

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November 21, 2012 7:54:51 AM

Hey guys...

I have an assembled (self built) budget PC. I plan to use it for (in order of priority) CAD/CAM (Solid Edge, AutoCAD), 3D Modelling (Autodesk Maya, 3DS Max), Video Editing (Premiere Pro, Sony Vegas Pro), and gaming of course.
For output I have a 40-inch TV, full HD.

Current specs in spoiler.
Spoiler
Specs:-
CPU - i3-2120 3.3GHz
GPU - Radedon HD 7750 1GB
PSU - 400W PSU
HDD1 - Seagate 1TB 7200RPM
HDD2 - WD Caviar Green 2TB Intellipower (Storage Drive)
Mobo - Gigabyte B75M-D3H
RAM - G.Skill 4GB @ 1333MHz
Case - Corsair 300R


What would be the next logical upgrade?
Hard Drive? CPU? RAM?
To me those seem like the weak parts. I'm happy (to a point) with the game performance I get, so GPU should be fine, but otherwise, what should I upgrade?
Also, I can't sink much more than $200 - $250 into a part, because I'm 14 and my Dad won't let me. Not yet atleast.

Any ideas? Any input would be helpful.
Also, I live in India, so no rebates or online discounts really apply.

More about : logical upgrade

a c 105 B Homebuilt system
November 21, 2012 8:10:48 AM

RAM, and then CPU, then RAM again is what makes sense to me.
Double the RAM to 8GB, then the CPU to an i7 (or at least an i5), then the RAM again to 16GB.
Though if that 4GB kit you have already is dual channel (so two sticks), you may have to do the RAM in one hit.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 21, 2012 6:29:37 PM

maybe go with a more stable psu and ram add more fans and overclock gpu and a hyper 212 to keep cpu cool during rendering.
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November 22, 2012 5:20:28 AM

@manofchalk
My RAMs dual channel, but I can add 2 more sticks. Should I go for a total of 12GB, or for a total of 8GB?
Also, I'll be upgrading a generation late, since I can only upgrade twice a year, 1 part (max 2) each.

@theloveablemoose
My PSU is pretty stable, and my dad (mechanical engineer that he is) insists that if the cover says '400W', it gives 400 watts, so no new PSU yet.
I have 2 fans, all 120mm. Am already adding another when I get back. (Molex to 3 pin adaptor)
My GPUs already OCed to 915MHz (core) and 1050 or 1150 MHz (RAM) so need for that, and I already have a hyper 212 evo or a tx3 evo (not sure, am currently not at home, I go to a boarding school, will be back on the 30th) so coolings fine.
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 22, 2012 3:19:28 PM

nanzer said:
@manofchalk
My RAMs dual channel, but I can add 2 more sticks. Should I go for a total of 12GB, or for a total of 8GB?
Also, I'll be upgrading a generation late, since I can only upgrade twice a year, 1 part (max 2) each.

@theloveablemoose
My PSU is pretty stable, and my dad (mechanical engineer that he is) insists that if the cover says '400W', it gives 400 watts, so no new PSU yet.
I have 2 fans, all 120mm. Am already adding another when I get back. (Molex to 3 pin adaptor)
My GPUs already OCed to 915MHz (core) and 1050 or 1150 MHz (RAM) so need for that, and I already have a hyper 212 evo or a tx3 evo (not sure, am currently not at home, I go to a boarding school, will be back on the 30th) so coolings fine.


It may say 400w but if its not a decent brand such as corsair or antec it might deliver less which might be a problem for any upgrades i would go with a 600w just to give some breathing room and clean power or upgrade your graphics card to a gtx 660 as the new keplar cards are very power efficient you can pick one up from newegg for 229.99 for the evga superclocked edition and you will have money left over for a corsair cx 600

Or potentialy you could spring for an i5 2500k and a second 7750 but that me overload the psu and will go over your potential budget

or the third option
get a 6850 a new psu and a new motherboard the 6850 will give you better gaming performance but will suck up more power.
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November 23, 2012 5:07:13 AM

Actually, like I said before, I'm on a tight budget. I can only spring for one upgrade right now. I was thinking RAM or CPU. If no CPU, I'll bump up my RAM to 12GB (2 kits, 4 and 8). But if yes CPU, which one will be in that sweet spot between price and performance? Keeping in mind ~$300 is all I can do, and I'll be selling my i3 anyway. Thinking of Ivy Bridge to stay on the safe side of power. Don't think there's much need for a GPU upgrade, as most of the applications given above (stuff like Premiere Pro, After Effects, etc.) are very CPU and RAM intensive.
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Best solution

a b B Homebuilt system
November 23, 2012 2:38:40 PM

nanzer said:
Actually, like I said before, I'm on a tight budget. I can only spring for one upgrade right now. I was thinking RAM or CPU. If no CPU, I'll bump up my RAM to 12GB (2 kits, 4 and 8). But if yes CPU, which one will be in that sweet spot between price and performance? Keeping in mind ~$300 is all I can do, and I'll be selling my i3 anyway. Thinking of Ivy Bridge to stay on the safe side of power. Don't think there's much need for a GPU upgrade, as most of the applications given above (stuff like Premiere Pro, After Effects, etc.) are very CPU and RAM intensive.


i would go with an i7 but the ivy bridge is bordering $300 whereas the sandy bridge is $270 the thing you will have to bare in mind is the ivy bridge will run hotter as it has the better integrated graphics which will mean that the 2600k will be a better overclocker in terms of temps also if you get the 2600k you could potentially get another 4gb stick of ram but i would go with the 2600k personally as i dont do any video editing but since you do you may want to lean toward the ivy bridge because programs that utilise quick sync will favour the ivy bridge.

so in conclusion go with the i7 as it will give better rendering performance than a i5 but go with a 2600k if you like overclocking.
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November 24, 2012 7:50:10 AM

@moose
i5 vs i7
Is it worth the premium? Because seriously, I can afford to wait a minute or so more if it comes to that, but I WILL need RAM. Also, where I live, the cost of a 2600k is the same as that of a 3770. The 3770k is just $20 more, give or take. Heres the sad part - they're all over my budget - $400 each.
I just checked a few benchmarks - turns out the 3550/3570K is perfect for my needs - especially cost wise. It leaves me enough cash to buy some more RAM too :) 
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 24, 2012 1:26:00 PM

nanzer said:
@moose
i5 vs i7
Is it worth the premium? Because seriously, I can afford to wait a minute or so more if it comes to that, but I WILL need RAM. Also, where I live, the cost of a 2600k is the same as that of a 3770. The 3770k is just $20 more, give or take. Heres the sad part - they're all over my budget - $400 each.
I just checked a few benchmarks - turns out the 3550/3570K is perfect for my needs - especially cost wise. It leaves me enough cash to buy some more RAM too :) 


i was going off newegg prices but yeah go with that so you can the ram aswell sorry for late reply psu died.
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November 26, 2012 7:03:12 AM

Ouch! Whats your replacement?
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November 26, 2012 7:04:28 AM

@moose
Ok, latest price check. Either I get the overclockable 3570K for a teeny bit over my budget, or I get the 3550, sacrifice overclocking, and get like 4GB more RAM.
Any suggestions?
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 26, 2012 3:25:36 PM

nanzer said:
Ouch! Whats your replacement?

ocz zs550w not a bad psu the braid on the cables isnt that good but its still good for a budget psu
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 26, 2012 3:28:48 PM

nanzer said:
@moose
Ok, latest price check. Either I get the overclockable 3570K for a teeny bit over my budget, or I get the 3550, sacrifice overclocking, and get like 4GB more RAM.
Any suggestions?

definitely the 3570k it comes with the better intergrated graphics which will help with quicksync yeah it wont be at full potential with 4gb of ram but it will be better in the long run.
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November 27, 2012 5:12:58 AM

My plan was to get the 3470, as it goes to 4.0GHz which would anyway have been around my max OC, and since this PC is for home use, I don't think I would notice much, especially with 8 or 12 GB RAM. So, last issue, how much RAM should I put?
Option 1 - 2 more DIMMs, 2GB each. Which makes the total = 8GB @ 1600MHz
Option 2 - 2 more DIMMs, 4GB each. Which makes the toal = 12GB @ 1600MHz
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a b B Homebuilt system
November 27, 2012 7:20:53 PM

you have to get ram tahts the same speed as the one you currently have beacsue the slower ram will make the 1600mhz ram run at 1333mhz so i would go with the same kit as you have now up to 8gb
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December 3, 2012 11:04:10 PM

Thats the point - they're both 1600 MHz.
Anyway, thanks a LOT for all your help!
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December 3, 2012 11:06:29 PM

Best answer selected by nanzer.
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a b B Homebuilt system
December 5, 2012 2:57:01 PM

nanzer said:
Thats the point - they're both 1600 MHz.
Anyway, thanks a LOT for all your help!

no problem
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!