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will my Phenom II 925 bottleneck a GTX 970?

post #1 of 8
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I've been saving up for a new card and I'm almost ready to make the purchase. I had thought I'd go for the GTX 970 (a 980 would be overkill for my needs). However a friend suggested I might have bottlenecking with the processor I have. My GTX 570 has been more than capable through the past 4 years but I've seen maximum requirements rising for newer games and I'd like to be able to consistently set them to ultra/highest detail.

My rig:
mobo Gigabyte 990XA-UD3
cpu AMD Phenom II 925 quad core 2.8GHz
gpu EVGA GTX 570
power Corsair TX 750
RAM 12 GB

The big-graphics games I'd like to play (off the top of my head): Rainbow Six: Siege, Batman: Arkham Knight, Dishonored II. I was just barely able to play CoD: Advanced Warfare, but it looked terrible. I bought that game mostly for the campaign and it was just awful to play on such low detail.

It seems like Arkham Knight has the highest requirements, so let's look at that.
[ Intel Core i7-3770, 3.4 GHz | AMD FX-8350, 4.0 GHz ]
[ NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 w 4GB Ram ]

Setting the 980 aside, how do I proceed? It seems a new processor is in order. Will my current motherboard have problems with a newer model AMD cpu? Any suggestions for which one to go with?
If I get a new cpu I'll probably just get the GTX 970 then.
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post #2 of 8
Hello

Yes your cpu will bottleneck an gtx 970 no doubt even with some OC.. but there is a good upgrade for you since your mobo is 990X chip

Used FX8320 for 120$ will be good upgrade and will serve you for +2year at least
   
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post #3 of 8
Yea, since you already have a 990 mobo a used 8320 oc'ed (42 - 44 is a easy oc on these) and a 970 wouldn't be a terrible move outside of a full platform switch. It will buy you some time.
     
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post #4 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chargeit View Post

Yea, since you already have a 990 mobo a used 8320 oc'ed (42 - 44 is a easy oc on these) and a 970 wouldn't be a terrible move outside of a full platform switch. It will buy you some time.
most of tested games with a FX cpu would perform worse than using Intel+AMD
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by PontiacGTX View Post

most of tested games with a FX cpu would perform worse than using Intel+AMD

Lol.

Yea, if it were me I'd ditch the AMD platform all together and move to intel. Even if it means having to sit on that 570 for a while longer. Just didn't feel like hearing it from the AMD crowd.

Smart move, spend the money on Intel and sit on the GPU until you can also afford a new GPU.
     
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post #6 of 8
The easiest thing to do is this ... get the games you want to play, using your current system. Set them to 'Low' everything. Now, can you play them okay? Great ... now you know your CPU is 'fast enough'. Then crank the visual settings to high or ultra or whatever. Does that make them UN-playable? Okay ... then you're GPU-limited in that scenario, cause the game WAS playable on Low settings (which should have shifted your bottleneck to the CPU since GPU had so little work to do).

Assuming that's 'how it went', you can most likely upgrade to a 970 and you should find you're able to run the games you tested via the above method ... on much higher graphical settings. In most cases, raising the graphical settings increases the relative CPU load only VERY marginally .. you basically just give your GPU more work to do by doing so.

Will you be breaking any benchmark records with that setup? Probably not ... Will you technically 'have a bottleneck' from your CPU? Yes, sometimes you might get 50FPS when someone with a fancy intel and the same GPU would get 80FPS ... but does that really matter?

Heck, when that does happen ... just turn up the graphical settings more. Shift the bottleneck to your card.

Et Voila ... 'bottleneck' gone.

Sure, SOME games are very CPU intensive (GTA is famous for that) and you MAY have times when your gameplay is actually affected purely cause of your CPU. You'll be able to spot that cause your GPU Utilization in AFterburner will be like 50% ... evne though it's running at low FPS. IF that keeps happening, or happens in a game you REALLY care about ... then you may HAVE to upgrade your proc and/or platform. But then you can just move your 970 to it, so ... why not buy it now and enjoy it?
Edited by brettjv - 11/8/15 at 1:28am
    
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post #7 of 8
That is excellent advice brettjv.
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post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for the comments. Thanks especially to brettjv for the remarks on bottlenecking. I've got an idea of how to proceed now!
Quote:
Originally Posted by brettjv View Post

The easiest thing to do is this ... get the games you want to play, using your current system. Set them to 'Low' everything. Now, can you play them okay? Great ... now you know your CPU is 'fast enough'. Then crank the visual settings to high or ultra or whatever. Does that make them UN-playable? Okay ... then you're GPU-limited in that scenario, cause the game WAS playable on Low settings (which should have shifted your bottleneck to the CPU since GPU had so little work to do).

Assuming that's 'how it went', you can most likely upgrade to a 970 and you should find you're able to run the games you tested via the above method ... on much higher graphical settings. In most cases, raising the graphical settings increases the relative CPU load only VERY marginally .. you basically just give your GPU more work to do by doing so.

Will you be breaking any benchmark records with that setup? Probably not ... Will you technically 'have a bottleneck' from your CPU? Yes, sometimes you might get 50FPS when someone with a fancy intel and the same GPU would get 80FPS ... but does that really matter?

Heck, when that does happen ... just turn up the graphical settings more. Shift the bottleneck to your card.

Et Voila ... 'bottleneck' gone.

Sure, SOME games are very CPU intensive (GTA is famous for that) and you MAY have times when your gameplay is actually affected purely cause of your CPU. You'll be able to spot that cause your GPU Utilization in AFterburner will be like 50% ... evne though it's running at low FPS. IF that keeps happening, or happens in a game you REALLY care about ... then you may HAVE to upgrade your proc and/or platform. But then you can just move your 970 to it, so ... why not buy it now and enjoy it?
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