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Question for my current setup

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
My current setup is my sig rig, I just got the GTX 570. I just want to ask what you guys think about a couple of things.

How much, if any, do you think the GTX 570 is held back by the rest of my system? I built this system 4 years ago now, and the only piece upgraded since then is the GTX 570. Was previously two 8800 Ultras in SLI, but one died on me. So I use the other for PhysX now when needed. I also normally have 8GB or RAM, but a friend currently has the other two sticks.

Also, do you believe there would be any benefit to move to a 790i board, from the 780i, to be able to use DDR3 RAM? Getting the RAM would be of no cost to me.

I don't have the money to upgrade to a Core i3/i5/i7 setup right now.

Thanks in advance for any and all helpful replies.
Edited by Gamer_Josh - 3/6/12 at 11:59am
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post #2 of 5
The most likely bottleneck will be your CPU, but it depends on the game, and only you can really say for sure. 4GB of RAM is plenty for most users, it's only if you run a LOT of stuff at once that you'll need more.

Run your most graphics intensive game at maximum settings (or get a good 3D graphics benchmark), open up task Manager and set it to the Performance tab. Then get MSI afterburner (or other similar program) and keep and eye on the GPU usage. Start the benchmark. You should see the GPU usage be at 98-100% usage and the CPU staying under ~80%. If you see the CPU higher than this, or the GPU lower than this, then your CPU is likely bottle necking your graphics card.
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post #3 of 5
I can see a bit of a bottleneck (your CPU holding back your GPU)...but nothing really game breaking unless you feel that the result of others is significant in terms of you having the same GPU as them on a different platform. Your RAM changing from DDR2 to DDR3 won't help so just stay away from moving onto a 790i setup especially when you can experience different overclocking results.

Your best option besides upgrading would be to push your CPU to the limit. Solution to that would be better cooling as well as taking your CPU to the danger zone (risk of degradation). I honestly feel you can continue using your current setup unless performance takes a serious dive...to the point of purchasing a high-end GPU but not gaining results from the last GPU you used. The outcome of that happening isn't as bad as using an SLI/Crossfire setup...so stay clear of going toward that unless you have the funds to support it. Have you noticed the trend? When you start spending big...it results in having to spend more for other things as well depending on your take on the situation.

I already knew I had a bottleneck when I was running my eVGA 780i + Intel E6750 + eVGA GTX275 SLI setup. However, I was already planning ahead on what my next build would be like when I had the funds ready (learning about the i7 920 being a serious powerhouse...resulting no bottlenecks for years to come). Now with my current computer, I don't have to upgrade for quite awhile unless it's for storage capacity. You should do the same. Forget any smack talk about your computer. Be happy with what you have. Plan accordingly through a certain budget. Be patient and you'll be ready to move up with a new platform at the right time.
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post #4 of 5

Whether or not your CPU is holding back your GTX570 depends largely on 2 factors (which game at what details+resolution).

 

If it is CPU intensive games like FSX, then it most likely is.

 

If it is more GPU intensive like Crysis and BF3, then it is unlikely.

 

IIRC, C2Q (eg QX9650) is about '20% slower' than i7 Nehalem (eg i7 920), gaming wise. So, your 3.6Ghz QX9650 is roughly an i7 920 at 3GHz.

A stock clock i7 920 at 2.67GHz can drive a GTX580 easily at 1920x1200 for BF3 High Quality without problem.

http://www.techspot.com/review/458-battlefield-3-performance/page7.html

 

The certain way to assess any CPU bottleneck is to plot a curve of framerate (fps) vs CPU frequency (Hz) for a certain game at a certain details+resolution. An example is shown below. If you have a steady increase of fps (ie a slope), then there is BN. If you have a plateau, then BN is little or nil. As your CPU has an unlocked multi, it is very easy to do such a scaling test.

 

cpu scaling test one.jpg

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
@CTRLurself
Thanks for the advice. I haven't tried a newer game yet, so I'll try what you suggested with a relatively new title and see which is pushed more. Though, I realize this will differ with different games and different settings. I've been hearing that the trend in most games now is them relying more on the GPU.

@pvp309rcp
Thanks. I will definitely look into pushing higher on the CPU clock. 3.6GHz was easy to achieve and is 100% stable on air. I will mess around with it some and see how much further I can go.

I do plan on upgrading at some point to a Core ix setup, and I'm not planning on SLI with my current one. I will wait until I do go Core ix for that.

@windfire
Thanks, that's some good info. It being comparable to an i7 920 at 3GHz with gaming is encouraging. I spent good money on that CPU when I built my system and I just want to get all I can out of it.

I definitely may do that test and see if/when it levels out, and see how much performance I gain every 200MHz. Of course the numbers will be different for each game.

If it never levels, I will set set it at the highest stable clock. And if such is the case for the games I play, I don't see much reason to overclock the video card further.
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Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOptical Drive
2x 500GB Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM Samsung 840 EVO SSD 250GB Aopen DVD/CD Burner Sony DVD drive 
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Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q Logitech G510 Corsair HX1000W 
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FoReVeR
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7-3770K Asus P8Z68-V Pro EVGA GTX 970 SC w/ACX 2.0 16GB(4x4GB) 2133MHz Mushkin Redline Ridgeback 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOptical Drive
2x 500GB Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM Samsung 840 EVO SSD 250GB Aopen DVD/CD Burner Sony DVD drive 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q Logitech G510 Corsair HX1000W 
CaseMouse
Antec 900 Mid-Tower Logitech G500S 
  hide details  
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