So I am currently "chipless". I am debating between the following 3 chips:
Q6700: 10x multi, GO stepping, sub $300 price point. I've played with a couple of these in the past and know I can expect 3.7 - 3.8 orthos stable on air.
Q9550: 8.5x multi, 45nm, sub $600 price point. Not much info available on this chip. My assumption being that I can do minimum of 450 with this chip )altough much higher with a quad is challenging) will only net me 3.8.
QX9650: 9x multi, 45nm, $1000 price point. Here is a tough choice. I know from Ratt and nuclearjock that this chip will do 4 ghz (hopefully on air) but is it worth the premium?
I recently owned a Q6600 GO and an E8400 but have decided to go back to quad.
Assuming I go with the QX9650, that will be my only upgrade.
If I go with the Q6700 or Q9550 I will likely also pick up one of the new western digital velociraptor's.
I'm also itching for a new case as well and am quite tempted by the antec 1200.
So the question is do I pull the trigger on a $1000 chip? I've owned an intel X6800 and an AMD FX-57 in the past so I don't get sticker shock but I am undecided if spending an extra $400-$700 is worth an extra couple of hundred mhz.
Also, with respect to the QX9650, can I hit 4 ghz orthos stable for 24/7 use on air? I have no interest in water cooling so this would also be a deciding factor.