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Upgrading current rig $500 budget

Last response: in Systems
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a b U Graphics card
December 26, 2012 1:51:03 PM

Good morning everyone. I am upgrading my i3-2100 & Radeon 6850 rig for BF3, Far Cry 3 & future titles. I'm just trying to get the best bang for the buck.

This is what I currently have:

CPU: Intel Core i3-2100 3.1GHz Dual-Core Processor ($114.99 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock B75M-DGS Micro ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($61.97 @ Newegg)
Memory: G.Skill Value Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1333 Memory ($37.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Seagate Barracuda 320GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($59.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: Sapphire Radeon HD 6850 1GB Video Card ($149.98 @ NCIX US)
Case: Antec One ATX Mid Tower Case ($54.98 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: Antec 450W ATX12V Power Supply ($30.95 @ NCIX US)
Total: $510.85

This is what I'm looking to upgrade to:

CPU: Intel Core i5-3470 3.2GHz Quad-Core Processor ($179.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: MSI GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB Video Card ($239.00 @ Newegg)
Power Supply: XFX 650W 80 PLUS Bronze Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($65.48 @ NCIX US)
Total: $484.47

So for $500 I want to go to a Quad Core, better Video Card and a higher wattage PSU. Edit: I also game on a Samsung 24" LED Monitor at 1920x1080.

Questions, comments, thoughts?
a c 273 U Graphics card
December 26, 2012 2:27:27 PM

This topic has been moved from the section Graphics & Displays to section Systems by Mousemonkey
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a c 106 B Homebuilt system
a c 127 U Graphics card
December 26, 2012 2:35:51 PM

Are you going to be upgrading when Haswell/Steamroller comes out?
If you aren't then what you have laid out will be fine. Dont see any issues with it.

If you are then I don't see much point in upgrading the CPU as it will be replaced in half a year, while the i3-2100 is at least adequate for most games. Would invest the cash into the PSU and GPU as is, with a new case (400R/HAF-XM).
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a b U Graphics card
December 26, 2012 5:57:54 PM

I'm very happy with my Antec, it's very well built with excellent airflow.

I'm not too enthusiastic about Haswell. I think the i5's will still be very relevant once the new CPU's drop. When I do decide to upgrade to Haswell I'll just swap out my Mobo & CPU.

I've been thinking of waiting until the new Radeon line drops, I'll be upgrading two generations and should see a substantial increase in performance. It's just that the 6850 is really starting to show it's age, especially with Far Cry 3.
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December 26, 2012 7:40:52 PM

dscudella said:
I'm not too enthusiastic about Haswell. I think the i5's will still be very relevant once the new CPU's drop. When I do decide to upgrade to Haswell I'll just swap out my Mobo & CPU.


One thing which some tend to forget is that an old CPU does not decrease in performance after a new generation is released. Current Ivy Bridge Core i5 CPUs are very fast, and while Haswell promises some very impressive things such as greatly improved iGPU performance, there is no sense in waiting for it if you don't need its improvements. People continue to use Core 2 Quads for gaming today, and I expect IB i5s will be used for several years after new generations are released.

One viewpoint is: If you are always waiting for the next thing, when will you every buy anything in the tech industry?

However, I feel that Haswell could be too big to ignore in mobile purchases. I would hold off any big laptop purchase if possible to see what power and graphics enhancements Haswell brings.

Good luck,
jptech
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Best solution

a c 106 B Homebuilt system
a c 127 U Graphics card
December 27, 2012 12:08:47 AM

dscudella said:
I'm not too enthusiastic about Haswell. I think the i5's will still be very relevant once the new CPU's drop. When I do decide to upgrade to Haswell I'll just swap out my Mobo & CPU.


I'm of the same mind, I'm sitting on my 3570k until Skylake releases. Maybe if the new console generation actually leads to better games I'l get Broadwell at least.

Waiting for the 8000 series is a bit more feasible, if AMD follow the timeline of the 7000 series the 8970/50 should be released in January.
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a b U Graphics card
December 27, 2012 3:42:07 PM

I think I'm just going to save some cash for now and grab the i5-3470 & XFX 650W now. I'll hold off on the video card until next year, hopefully the new Radeons don't dissapoint.
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a b B Homebuilt system
a b U Graphics card
December 29, 2012 4:27:13 AM

Looks like a good upgrade. Cant really find any faults
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a b U Graphics card
January 7, 2013 10:56:10 PM

Best answer selected by dscudella.
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a b U Graphics card
January 8, 2013 3:23:55 AM

I ended up just getting the i5-3470 and Corsair CX600 V2. My Antec VP450 was perfectly capable but I just wanted more "wiggle" room for my next upgrade and had the cash set aside now.
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January 8, 2013 6:56:17 AM

I'd invest my money on a GPU : 7870 Jokercard Tahiti LE 2GB, it perfoms almost as well as the 7950, and GTX660.

Best investment price/quality (I think)

3570K processor, makes me drawl.
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a b U Graphics card
January 8, 2013 2:23:41 PM

tr1x- said:
I'd invest my money on a GPU : 7870 Jokercard Tahiti LE 2GB, it perfoms almost as well as the 7950, and GTX660.

Best investment price/quality (I think)

3570K processor, makes me drawl.


Waiting for the new Radeon line to drop in a few months. Also the i5-3570K was $45 more and to OC I would have had to swap out my motherboard and get an aftermarket HSF.

Best bang for the buck was the i5-3470 ($175) and the Corsair CX600V2 ($58).
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