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Will Core i3 540 at 4GHz bottleneck an HD7870?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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October 29, 2012 12:33:51 PM

Hey folks! I know that these bottlenecking questions might already be saturating the forums, but I just can't find a post similar to my set-up.

I am still rocking a 1st Gen Core i3 540 OC'd at 4GHz. I'm currently using an HD6870, and looking to upgrade to an HD7870. Would my CPU bottleneck the HD7870?

I appreciate your thoughts on this. I'm worried I might make a wrong upgrade. :( 
October 29, 2012 12:38:35 PM

This is literally a copy and paste of an answer I gave this morning - That completely depends on each individual game or program you run. If you play a really CPU intensive game then yes it could quite possibly bottleneck the GPU. On the other hand if you play a really GPU intensive game then the GPU could quite possibly bottleneck the CPU. - Bottlenecking is only really applicable when talking about specific programs
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October 29, 2012 12:43:36 PM

That's a very valid point. I mainly use my rig for games, and don't do any video editing. I play different types of games, though I noticed that I'm particularly having problems running Skyrim, Metro 2033, and BF3 at certain settings at 1920x1200.
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October 29, 2012 12:43:41 PM

Of course you'll bottleneck some games use more than 2 cores which will limit you. Battlefield 3 can use 3 or 4 cores for example
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October 29, 2012 12:49:33 PM

DJ_Acura said:
That's a very valid point. I mainly use my rig for games, and don't do any video editing. I play different types of games, though I noticed that I'm particularly having problems running Skyrim, Metro 2033, and BF3 at certain settings at 1920x1200.


Yeah your going to get hammered on Skyrim and BF3 both games are pretty CPU intensive so having a dual core going to cause issues.

You might wanna shop around for a upgrade to your processor if you want to max out those games.
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October 29, 2012 12:52:06 PM

Apart from BF3 on 64-players maps, there aren't many games that will 'bottleneck' on any 4GHz dual-core CPU from Core2 and up.

The whole "bottlenecking" thing is completely overblown. If the GPU is not bottlenecking, the CPU will and vice-versa unless you enable vsync at which point vsync becomes your bottleneck and the only thing that matters then is how well the CPU-GPU are managing to push a steady 60fps.
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