Originally Posted by damric
Depends on what game and what resolution. If you play Morrowind at 800x600, there could be some issues.
If there is a performance "issue" at 800x600, does increasing the resolution have any chance of solving the "issue?" All other things being equal.
The reason I bring this up, is because I know there is a prevalent misunderstanding about CPU/GPU bottlenecks and how resolution and detail settings come into play.
If something runs badly due to a CPU bottleneck, increasing resolution and details settings can never "solve" that problem, it can only make it look nicer while still bottle-necking on the CPU. Eventually, if we turn the settings up high enough, the CPU bottleneck will be gone, but the performance will be even worse because we've just found a setting that bottlenecks to an even lower performance level on the GPU than we were at before while bottle-necking on the CPU.
The FX-8350 + R9 290X will work great in many games. There are some games that will bottleneck on the CPU even if it's an i7-4770K@5ghz paired to an R7 250X so keep that in mind.
If it were me personally, I would much rather have the i7-4770K combined with an R9 290, vs the FX-8350 combined with the R9 290X. My rationalization is as follows:
With the i7+290, all GPU bottle-necked workloads will be ~10% slower than the 8350+290X would have been. This 10% cut in performance is not a problem because I can ALWAYS gain that back with a change to graphical settings if it is bordering on bothersome (dipping below 60FPS, for example). In fact, there is nothing that the 290X can do, that the 290 can't in terms of what games can be played smoothly.
With the 8350+290X, CPU bottle-necked workloads will be up to
40% slower than the i7+290 would have been due to the differences in per-thread performance on the pile-driver architecture compared to Haswell. This up to
40% cut in performance is
a problem as many people who play strategy games and MMOs will attest to, as it can mean FPS dips to below 30FPS no matter what graphical settings we choose. The only "solution" is to choose not to play these CPU bound games, or play them in a manner that does not expose the CPU bottleneck (avoid high unit count scenarios). Unlike the GPU sacrifice in the first scenario above, that has no tangible negative consequences in terms of what can and can not be done in games, choosing the FX-8350 can in fact negatively effect what games can be played and how by a margin that may not be acceptable to some users.
There's nothing "wrong" with sticking to the game plan here and doing a PD+290X. Just keep in mind that the PD chips have single threaded performance that is comparable to where Intel was 3-4+ years ago on Nahalem. When overclocked, Nahalem and PileDriver can usually shrug off enough of this handicap to play any game well enough that it doesn't matter much. Most users report good smooth gameplay in most games on PD ~5ghz. (just like most users with a Nahalem @ ~4ghz are pretty well off for gaming still). Expect CPU bottlenecks. Remember, this class of single threaded performance was being paired with GTX480's and HD6790's back then, which are about HALF the performance of todays flagship GPUs.Edited by mdocod - 4/4/14 at 1:18pm