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System Builder Marathon, March 2012: $2600 Performance PC

Benchmark Results: Skyrim And StarCraft II

Skyrim

When we first started testing Skyrim, this title was very much CPU-bottlenecked. After a recent patch, performance jumped quite a bit, and the extreme reliance on processor power was alleviated somewhat. Today's it's still fairly CPU-bound at most settings and with most graphics cards.

As a result, this title appears to be especially suited to our CPU upgrade, though our highest test indicates that a single Radeon HD 7970 might also be a better match for it than the two GeForce GTX 580s we used last time.

StarCraft II

CPU bottlenecks normally manifest themselves as a narrow performance delta seen between a number of different resolutions. GPU bottlenecks typically become apparent when detail levels or resolutions are significantly increased.

StarCraft II counters that trend by appearing to become more CPU-limited when we set it to Ultra textures and Extreme quality. Our current build leads a little more than half the time, but its performance scales in a manner that’s not easily predictable.

  • llguitargr8
    Just curious, did you guys purchase all these parts and right these articles before the GTX 680 was released? I really thought you guys would have gone with that, and if it wasn't because they weren't available at the time, then what makes the 7970 better in your opinion?
    Reply
  • llguitargr8
    Sorry, *write. It's late.
    Reply
  • g-unit1111
    Not sure if I agree with that choice of cooler but I definitely like the rest of the setup!
    Reply
  • bystander
    llguitargr8Just curious, did you guys purchase all these parts and right these articles before the GTX 680 was released? I really thought you guys would have gone with that, and if it wasn't because they weren't available at the time, then what makes the 7970 better in your opinion?Almost all these build articles are based on purchases that took place 2 months ago. Even if they were to have bought these parts today, it would be hard to purchase a 680, as stock is a major issue.
    Reply
  • mjmjpfaff
    I like it a lot. I am glad you mixed it up and went with the x79 platform.
    Reply
  • esrever
    I like the build except the x79 adds like $500 extra that I see very little benefit from.
    Reply
  • Pezcore27
    Love the build. Do want!
    Reply
  • e56imfg
    Dang I need to win this one!! I'm so happy they balanced the CPU with the GPU this time around.
    Reply
  • hmp_goose
    Good job: Working through the details of the CPU cooler like that is half the fun of this hobby. Great build.
    Reply
  • theuniquegamer
    Good build . But there could be more improvement by replacing a $600 cpu and $320 mother board with a i7 2600k and a $200 z68 mother board . And also replacing the 7970($590) with 2x680 at 2x$500(from the money saved from cpu and motherboard and 7970). It may give better gaming result than this build.
    Reply