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Will the 6970 bottleneck my somewhat older system? (For BF3)

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
http://www.reddit.com/r/buildapc/com...n_upgrade_for/

Posted this thread on Reddit...

Basically, I'm running these specs:

Windows 7 64-Bit
Intel Core 2Quad CPU Q9550 @ 2.83GHz
4096MB RAM (DDR2)
ATI Radeon HD 4870
1920x1200
Motherboard: ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI with an NVidia nForce 650i SLI

Battlefield 3 is barely playable even on low settings (which kinda surprises me, but...) So everyone's told me it's the GPU that's breaking me here, and I can totally understand why. So I was looking to upgrade to a Sapphire 6970 and maybe next year when the 7000 series comes out I'll get another 6970 and crossfire them....maybe.

Anyways, psikeiro on that Reddit topic has been telling me that the 6970 will bottleneck my system because of the DDR2 ram and the motherboard.

Basically, is this true? What are my options? I really can't afford to upgrade the CPU, RAM, Motherboard, and GPU like he suggested.

I'm pretty new at this stuff so I don't really know what I'm talking about, I really appreciate the help guys.

ALSO: If it's true that the 6970 will bottleneck my system, what about the 570?
mellowtooth
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Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
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mellowtooth
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post #2 of 17
Not really, give the Q9550 a overclock and your set.
Yeyo
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Yeyo
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post #3 of 17
Technically your Q9550 might bottleneck the card in benchmarks but in BF3 which is a very graphics intensive game, it won't hold you back. You can also overclock the cpu, ram and vid card to increase performance further. Check out this Toms article on BF3 and graphics cards.

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...ance,3063.html
post #4 of 17
There will be bottlenecks all over the place, there always is with cheaper systems. Get a new cooler and OC your FSB, CPU and memory, this will reduce the effect of the bottlenecks.

However, these bottlenecks will be nowhere near big enough to have a big effect on the processing of BF3. Especially as you have a quad.

The engine in BF3 uses mainly the card to process the effects.

If you don't believe me, I am running my ram @960, FSB @1867 and Core 2 duo at 4.2GHz and even using my old 5670 BF3 runs fine at medium (60fps) and on high (30fps).

With my XFX 6870 I get 60fps on highest settings.
 
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post #5 of 17
i have a similar system. what stepping is the Q9550? if it's E0, overclock it! i'm running at 3.4ghz stable and i'm even undervolted. it's one of the easiest processors to overclock. we have similar motherboards as well.

you should be fine with a 6970, but you can save yourself some money by getting a 6950 and overclocking to 6970 speeds. YMMV
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post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
Alright, cool. I guess I'll go for the 6970 then. Would you guys recommend it over the 570? (Same price)

And whats the issue with bottlenecks if they aren't going to affect my gaming performance at all?
mellowtooth
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Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
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mellowtooth
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Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
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post #7 of 17
6970 is on par with a 580 in BF3. I say go for it, but I'm biased. Also, bottlenecking shouldn't be a problem.
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post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
alright, cool. oh and will I be able to crossfire with this rig? not doing that right now but eventually it'd be nice. Just wondering cuz my motherboard is a ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI with an NVidia nForce 650i SLI chipset, and I don't know anything about crossfire / sli but that doesn't sound too crossfire friendly
mellowtooth
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
Monitor
1920x1200 
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mellowtooth
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
Monitor
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post #9 of 17
No not Crossfire with that chipset.

If you are covinced you will go to teh multiGPU config in the next year or so and keep the current CPU/Mobo I would get the 570 instead so you can SLI. If you think you may like to get a new CPU/Mobo then either MAD or Nvidia will be good for you. Currently the AMD GPUS scale better in CF then Nvidia does in SLI.
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mike87 View Post
i have a similar system. what stepping is the Q9550? if it's E0, overclock it! i'm running at 3.4ghz stable and i'm even undervolted. it's one of the easiest processors to overclock. we have similar motherboards as well.

you should be fine with a 6970, but you can save yourself some money by getting a 6950 and overclocking to 6970 speeds. YMMV
It's running factory standards, I've never overclocked anything on my system....gonna have to start doing that. How do you overclock the Q9550? I'm thinkin' somewhere around 3.2....

Yeah, but if I was gonna overclock the card, couldn't I overclock a 6970 to a more GTX 580-ish speed?
mellowtooth
(13 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
Monitor
1920x1200 
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mellowtooth
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core 2Quad Q9550 @ 2.8 GHz ASUSTeK P5N-E SLI w/ nVidia nForce 650 SLI chip Sapphire Radeon 6970 2GB 4069 MB (DDR2, 4x1024 slots) 
Monitor
1920x1200 
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