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Time to upgrade the desktop...looking for advise.

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February 18, 2013 8:39:00 PM

Hello everyone! My current desktop build is about 4.5 years old now and I'm looking to upgrade. Here is a list of items I have in my current desktop.

Keep:
Case (large Antec ATX)
DVD drive
Power supply (Antec EarthWatts model EA-500D)
Crucial M4 128GB SSD drive (primary/Windows 7 64 bit drive)
Seagate 500GB HD (secondary drive)
Nvidia Quadro 600 video card (PCI express x16)
CPU fan if compatible (XIGMATEK HDT-SD964)

Replace:
Motherboard (Asus P5K Pro)
CPU (Intel Core 2 Duo 3.0 Ghz E8400)
RAM (4GB 4x1 Crucial Ballistic Tracer)

I think I'm too the point where I'm outgrowing 4GB of RAM. The price of DDR2 made me think about re-building vs trying to replace the 4GB with 8GB. I do some light CAD work and always have music playing plus multiple tabs open in Firefox. This is eating up my available RAM. I don't game at all.

A few questions:
Should I look at more than a two core processor?
Intel vs. AMD?
16GB vs 8GB of RAM?

I'd like to keep the cost down so I'm looking for "bang for the buck" items.

Thanks!
a b B Homebuilt system
February 18, 2013 8:59:10 PM

If you don't do much gaming (which I assume you don't considering the Quadro), the FX 8350 is comparable to the i7 3770 in multi threading instructions and it is about $100 cheaper than the 3770.

http://www.techradar.com/us/reviews/pc-mac/pc-components/processors/amd-fx-8350-1110369/review

Get 8GB if you are running light CAD work, 16GB would help with more intensive work.

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: AMD FX-8350 4.0GHz 8-Core Processor ($194.15 @ Amazon)
Motherboard: ASRock 970 EXTREME4 ATX AM3+ Motherboard ($99.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $334.12
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-18 17:58 EST-0500)

Compared to Intel 3770

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3770 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($289.99 @ Newegg)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($127.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $457.95
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-18 17:59 EST-0500)

or i5 3570 which is only 4 core

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i5-3570 3.4GHz Quad-Core Processor ($209.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-Z77X-D3H ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($127.98 @ SuperBiiz)
Memory: G.Skill Sniper 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.98 @ Outlet PC)
Total: $377.94
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-02-18 17:59 EST-0500)
February 19, 2013 1:51:51 PM

Thanks for the information. Do you think I could benefit from an 8 core processor?
Related resources
a b B Homebuilt system
February 19, 2013 2:59:54 PM

Probably not so much with CAD but if you multitasking (as you said you are doing) there will be a benefit using multiple cores. 16GB of RAM will also help with multitasking and rendering too.
February 19, 2013 3:31:54 PM

Aside from the GPU, my computer was the exact same build as yours right down to the 4x1GB Crucial RAM. I'm going to cry when I replace E8400.

I'd go with cball's advice, especially if you're not gaming.
a b B Homebuilt system
February 19, 2013 11:35:14 PM

mh454 said:
I'm looking at this processor now: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I think 4 cores is more than enough for my needs and it's cheaper than the FX-8350


If you want to go AMD 4 cores, get the 4300. It uses Piledriver (Vishera) architecture which is much better Bulldozer (Zambezi).
!