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Phenom 955 Black, when will it hold me back?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Looking into upgrading my system because....well...I want to.

I'm curious though, I currently run on;

Phenom II 955 Black edition @4.00 Ghz
Gigabyte 970 UD3 board
BFG GTX 260 216
8GB of hyperX, forget the speed.

Anyways, main question is; at what point in terms of video cards will my CPU bottleneck me? Would a 460 do just as much as a 660 if that is all I change? The card is old but runs nicely, but I just upgraded from 1440x900 to 1920x1080 and high settings are starting to hurt..Games to be played include StarCraft 2, league of legends, and BF3 in high settings at 60+ is fine with me. Folding when not gaming, of course thumb.gif

Thanks!
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post #2 of 8
Definitely upgrade video card first and the 660 is a huge upgrade and would still run nicely with that processor.
post #3 of 8
With you at 4Ghz? A good 2-3 years before you start encountering games that really need pci express 3.0 cards. That is if you want to keep playing on high settings.
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post #4 of 8
Dude...that 260 is holding you back. I got a 5850 on a 965 and I still got headroom.
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post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well I went and bought a Galaxy GTX460 as a 'catchup' card, got me to the same performance of the 260, but at a higher resolution and one step on some graphics options. (doesn't turn into a slideshow on Metro in BF3 now!) Got it because it was 60 dollars new from Craigslist. Should hold me over long enough for the 660Ti to stop to about 150 dollars so I can pick up a couple of them wink.gif

Thanks for the input!


Side note: These Galaxy cards are dirt cheap and pretty nice so far in my experience, I've had two GT440's and this GTX460 and I cant complain, I have the 460 at 750/1000 running no problem at 56c Load smile.gif
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post #6 of 8
Yeah those gtx 460s are really nice, almost got one but had to stay firm to my budget and ended up with my 5770.
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post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr_Me_II View Post

Looking into upgrading my system because....well...I want to.
I'm curious though, I currently run on;
Phenom II 955 Black edition @4.00 Ghz
Gigabyte 970 UD3 board
BFG GTX 260 216
8GB of hyperX, forget the speed.
Anyways, main question is; at what point in terms of video cards will my CPU bottleneck me? Would a 460 do just as much as a 660 if that is all I change? The card is old but runs nicely, but I just upgraded from 1440x900 to 1920x1080 and high settings are starting to hurt..Games to be played include StarCraft 2, league of legends, and BF3 in high settings at 60+ is fine with me. Folding when not gaming, of course thumb.gif
Thanks!

You'll be "bottlenecked" every time you play SC2, never when you play BF3.

"bottlenecking" is one of the stupidest terms used on this website, because everyone uses it wrong. From another post I wrote on the subject, written in response to someone considering upgrading from an Athlon II to a Phenom II:
Quote:
Bottleneck is one of the most overused (and misused!) terms in computing. It can mean one of two things.

First definition (the right one):
As a result of some hardware deficiency, it is impossible to use component x at its full efficiency. We then say component x is "bottlenecked". Example: you have a fancy new SSD, but your motherboard only has SATA2 connections. Because SATA2 cannot handle the full speed of an SSD, the SSD is "bottlenecked" - it cannot, under any circumstances, transfer data through your motherboard at its maximum speed because of the bandwidth bottleneck imposed on it by SATA2 when the SSD can utilize SATA3 speeds.

Second definition (the wrong one):
A software program that uses both component x and component y can theoretically achieve superior performance using component x but in reality cannot do so because component y is not good enough. People who are sloppy with their terminology and figure it's a good idea to confuse people then say component x is "bottlenecked". Example: you play StarCraft 2 on a computer with a Radeon 6770 and an fx-8150. The Radeon 6770 is capable of displaying SC2's graphics at maximum (ultra) graphics settings at a speed of at least 60 frames per second. But the fx-8150 cannot run late-game StarCraft 2 at 60 frames per second. People with crappy vocabulary then say the Radeon 6770 is "bottlenecked" - though the graphics card is capable of displaying SC2 with ultra graphics settings at 60 frames per second or greater, the system does not do so as a result of the processor.

The benefit of the first definition is that it is consistent. There's a performance problem. You fix it. Performance problems solved. Did you need that performance? Who knows. The problem with the second definition is that it is TOTALLY DEPENDENT ON THE SOFTWARE YOU"RE RUNNING. Sure, using the second definition the Athlon II will sometimes "bottleneck" a 7950. But in almost every situation that is true the Phenom II will also "bottleneck" a 7950.

The StarCraft 2 example is my favorite because there's literally no processor in the world that can maintain a consistent 60 fps in the larger late-game battles. So using the second definition any processor that can display SC2 at ultra resolution at 60fps (which is easy as pie to do) is bottlenecked by any processor. Whee. A 6770 ($90 GPU) is bottlenecked by an i7-3770k ($330 CPU). Better upgrade your CPU. Oh, wait. CAN'T.

There are lots and lots and lots of games which can get full use out of a 7950 using an Athlon II. Only the second definition applies. But the second definition ALWAYS applies unless you specify the software involved.

Edit: Kudos to Boinz above for responding assuming you meant the first definition.
Edited by MisterFred - 12/27/12 at 6:20pm
    
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post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by MisterFred View Post

You'll be "bottlenecked" every time you play SC2, never when you play BF3.
"bottlenecking" is one of the stupidest terms used on this website, because everyone uses it wrong. From another post I wrote on the subject, written in response to someone considering upgrading from an Athlon II to a Phenom II:
Edit: Kudos to Boinz above for responding assuming you meant the first definition.

I did, however regarding the 2nd definition, it would depend on the game. I know for a fact Crysis 1 LOVES IPC first, then Graphical power.
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