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

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!
6 answers Last reply
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  1. 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)
  2. Thanks for the information. Do you think I could benefit from an 8 core processor?
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. I'm looking at this processor now: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819106009

    I think 4 cores is more than enough for my needs and it's cheaper than the FX-8350
  6. mh454 said:
    I'm looking at this processor now: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819106009

    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).
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