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Upgrade dilemma...

Discussion in 'Techno-Magic' started by Kitrax, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. Kitrax

    Kitrax Pantaloons are supposed to go where!?!?

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    So I've already got a pretty sweet system:
    CPU: Core2 Duo E8400
    Mobo: ASUS Maximus Extreme
    Video: ATI HD 3870
    RAM: 2GB DDR3 1333
    HDD: 2x (RAID 0), 1 HDD for backups, and 1 HDD for Win7 testing

    Now, my video card is showing its age. If I turn on 4x AA in DAO, my FPS drop to unacceptable numbers.

    I want to upgrade...but do I get 2 ATI HD 5770's and put them in CrossFire for about $350, or do I buy a single ATI HD 5850 for about $325....or do I drop the extra $50 and go for a ATI HD 5870 for $400?

    To speed things up system wide, I was planning to push my E8400 to 3.6GHz. Also I'm buying Win7 soon, and I'm thinking of upgrading my RAM to 4GB (2x 2GB) DDR3 1600 for about $130.

    I'm not broke by any means right now, but I really don't want to blow all my "play" money on my 'puter...but I want DAO (and future games) to look as awesome as possible.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Ragusa

    Ragusa Eternal Halfling Paladin Veteran

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    The RAM upgrade is a very sensible idea anyway. I would go for that no matter what. I have to say that now that I have 8GB (I have four 2GB sticks of Chaintech Apogee GT DDR-2 1066, very nice and 'overlockable' RAM. My instinct to buy in iirc September was right - they are apparently not available anymore. I could sell them at a profit at e-bay now. I thought I might need the extra memory down the road, i.e. in the remaining three or more years that I intend to continue using my computer). Doubling your RAM to 4 GB is an improvement that you will notice, under XP, Vista or Windows 7.

    As for the GPU set up: I read that two ATI 5770 in Crossfire have the performance of a single 5800 class GPU. What power would two cards in Crossfire consume at what performance opposed to a single higher end card? Energy efficiency is a criterion? Then, there is noise. ATI cards have a tendency to run hot and thus they tend to be a wee bit noisy. I have my 4870, and I'm happy with it, but it is about the only thing I really hear from my computer. As a result my instinct would suggest a single ATI 5850.
     
  3. Kitrax

    Kitrax Pantaloons are supposed to go where!?!?

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    Energy efficiency??? What's that? :p

    As for noise, I've been thinking about a DD water cooling system for the CPU, NB, and video card since I'm going to be OCing my E8400. My CM Cosmos 1000 can accommodate a 2x 120mm radiator and the rear panel can accommodate a 1x 120mm radiator. :D

    So we have 1 vote for the ATI HD 5850...any others?
     
  4. Munchkin Blender Gems: 22/31
    Latest gem: Sphene


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    I would get a 5870 and know that you have the very best single core GPU on the market.

    If you want to go the crossfire route I would recommend the 5750 over the 5770. The performance gain vs. price is really not worth the extra money of a 5770. You can have two 5750 for about $250.
     
  5. Chandos the Red

    Chandos the Red This Wheel's on Fire

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    More RAM is always a good idea, if the OS supports it. But on the DDR3 1600, I'm not sure. I recently purchased 4 GB of Corsair DDR 3 1600 (and it says so on the box), but it only runs at 1333 in my system. It is a new mainboard, and the voltage is auto set at 1.5. The RAM is supposed to run at 1.65 Volts. I jumped the voltage to 1.64, since there was no option for 1.65, and now it runs at 1367. It seems fine, and runs well at either setting, but I've heard of other people having the same issue with 1600 RAM.
     
  6. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Upgrade dilemma? I got rid of my old one and got a newer model ... runs faster, has a better memory, less maintenance, the video portion is greatly improved all around and the audio has much less feedback.

    For computers I just get what's on sale.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2010
  7. Kitrax

    Kitrax Pantaloons are supposed to go where!?!?

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    So here's the thing with DDR3 1600 and 1800. It's actually just DDR3 1333 that has been tested and certified by the manufacturer to run at DDR3 1600 or 1800 speeds. My Asus Maximus Extreme has a page in the BIOS to select the RAM's speed and voltage.
    If you just add some DDR3 1600/1800, your mobo will run it at 1333 speeds until you tell it otherwise. :thumb:
    That's not really an option for me. I don't buy pre-built desktop computers...I always build my own...and ff I were to do that now, it would cost me over $4000. I know, I designed my current "dream" pc on newegg last night. When you have a $400 mobo, a $580 CPU, 2x $400 videocards, a DDR 3 1866 Tri-Channel pack of RAM for $300......yeah, that adds up quick. :bad:



    Anyway, I ended up spending waaaaaaaay more than I wanted to spend, but I'm happy with what I ordered:
    • XFX Radeon HD 5850 - Got it for $300, you can't beat XFX's "double lifetime" warranty!
    • Corsair Dominator 4GB (2 x 2GB) DDR3 1600 - These are not the Dominators with the massive heat spreader & dual fans. They're one step down.
    • Win7 Pro (full retail) - Now that I'm going to be running 4+ GB of RAM, it was time to bend over for M$ and hand them the lube. :rolleyes: I wish I had enough $$$ when it was offered as a discounted pre-order. :bad:
    So yeah, I ended up spending just over $700...which is about $400 *more* than I wanted to spend...but hey, it was now or never considering I lost my seasonal 2nd job, and the days of not paying rent end in Febuary. :bad:


    Now, one thing I'm wondering about are my 2GB (2x 1GB) sticks of Corsair DDR3 1333 that I currently have. I don't think I can set one bank of RAM at 1600 and leave the other at 1333. That would probably cause speed bottlenecks...but I'm not sure if my current RAM can handle 1600 speeds. :bad:

    I'd like to have 6GB of RAM, but not if I have to keep them all at 1333 speeds.


    Oh yeah, sorry Tal...Newegg didn’t have the best deals (for once :jawdrop: ) so I couldn’t help SP with my $700 shopping spree. :bad:
     
  8. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    I guess my comment was too obscure....
     
  9. Merlanni

    Merlanni ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    You chose wisely.
     
  10. dmc

    dmc Speak softly and carry a big briefcase Staff Member Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Resourceful Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!)

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    Just so we're clear, I believe T2Bruno was referring to his wife upgrade . . .
     
  11. Kitrax

    Kitrax Pantaloons are supposed to go where!?!?

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    Yeah, I kind of picked up that... :p

    T2, I really like the current model I have, it just needs a software upgrade and an updated EULA that removes certain legal formalities.
    Since it's an auto-upgrading piece of software, there will be bugs that need to be worked out along the way. It will be interesting to see what version # it ends up at. :p


    As for my purchases....one box arrives tomorrow and another on Thursday. :banana:
    Alas, I won't be able to install them/play with them until Saturday night. :wail:
     
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