System Builder Marathon, March 2011: $500 Gaming PC

Benchmark Results: S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call Of Pripyat And F1 2010

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat

A quick glance suggests the current PC has a lead in this DirectX 11-based title. However, a closer look reveals it is edged out at 1920x1080 by the higher-overclocked December PC.

The results seem low for the current PC, and it's quite possible the Catalyst 11.1 drivers are to blame. We know S.T.A.L.K.E.R. isn’t well-threaded and is generally GPU-limited. So, if there is a processor-oriented advantage, it’s likely in favor of December’s higher-clocked Athlon II.

All of the configurations are fine, through, at 1680x1050. The overclocked December PC offers the best 1920x1080 performance, maintaining a 5 FPS lead in the demanding “Sun Shafts” test.

F1 2010

Another DirectX 11 title, F1 2010 appears heavily CPU/platform-limited, demonstrating a huge benefit in favor of the quad-core Phenom II. While the current machine breezes through these settings, the former triple-core Athlon II and GeForce GTX 460 combo really suffer at their stock settings, and don't stretch their legs much, even after significant overclocking.

Another blowout! The high-clocked December PC struggles, while the 3.4 GHz quad-core-enabled rig has enough CPU horsepower to see the mildly-overclocked Radeon HD 6850 become our limiting component.

  • tacoslave
    i think orange looks spiffy
  • abswindows7
    worst case in the world.
  • LuckyDucky7
    "I’ll certainly entertain the possibility of Intel’s newly-available Core i3-2100 for the next SBM."

    Have fun overclocking that rig!

    I'd choose my O/C'd i3-530 @ 3.75 GHz (stock, air-cooled) over any of the new Sandy Bridge offerings any day.
    The 2100 just cannot compete with that- it's marginally better than a first-gen i3, and it cannot be pushed harder.

    *Hopes Bulldozer will be ready by that time*
  • wolfram23
    Pretty darn good for $500!
  • Judguh
    Good Build!
  • hmp_goose
    Need the optical drive?
  • haplo602
    now finaly a low SBM build I like.

    ++ on the PSU (finaly not a 500W+ waste)
    + on the case (looks decent)
  • lunyone
    Pretty good build for the $. I would've gone with the Athlon x4 or x3 to keep things under budget, but that is just me. There are plenty of GPU options in the ~$170 price range. I think you might've got one of "those" GPU's that you read about. This is why "expecting" OC'ing abilities with whatever part you buy, shouldn't be taken for granted. Buy what you can afford and if you get a good OC on your parts, feel blessed:)
  • lunyone
    I would've taken the savings on the CPU and bought better RAM or maybe even a different case, but that is just nit picking a bit :)
  • one-shot
    Would someone please explain the point of comparing the old SBM to the new one if there isn't a list of the parts from the SBM done in the past? These have always been annoying when the reader is forced to look back to December for a detailed list of parts. This has been practiced for years here. It makes no sense comparing to something the reader has no idea as to the parts being used in the past. Seriously....

    Edit: Why Did I get a Minus one the second after my post was submitted?