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CPU and 9800 GT to GTX 460 Upgrade Bottleneck

post #1 of 4
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I'm currently running a 9800 GT (EVGA) and want to upgrade to a GTX 460. But I'm hesitant because I'm using a fairly old quad-core Q6600 at stock 2.4 GHz and am thinking this may bottleneck the GTX 460 performance.

I hear that OC'ing the Q6600 to 3.2 GHz is a breeze, so I may do that (I'm an OC noob).

Anyone have experience with or have ideas about this? I'm willing to buy the GTX 460 if it gives a significant performance boost over my 9800 GT, but I'm not going to bother if it's just a small improvement.

I am eyeing this right now: EVGA 01G-P3-1373-AR GeForce GTX 460 (Fermi) Superclocked EE 1GB



My specs (everything in stock conditions):
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600 2.4 GHz
EVGA nForce 780i SLI Motherboard
EVGA 9800 GT 512 MB
8GB RAM Corsair XMS2
Corsair H50 Liquid CPU Cooler
Edited by Tones - 1/11/11 at 6:58pm
Metabolomics
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Intel Q6600 2.4 GHz EVGA nForce 780i SLI EVGA GeForce 9800 GT Corsair XMS2 8GB 
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Metabolomics
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Intel Q6600 2.4 GHz EVGA nForce 780i SLI EVGA GeForce 9800 GT Corsair XMS2 8GB 
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Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit LG 23" Widescreen LCD w/ LED Backlight Corsair CMPSU-750TX 750W Antec P182 Gun Metal Black 0.8mm Cold Rolled Steel 
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post #2 of 4
Over clock that processor... You should get to 3.5-.6 and yes, GTX 460 is a significant upgrade over a 9800GT even if there is a CPU bottle neck.
Po' Pimpin'
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Po' Pimpin'
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post #3 of 4
There is not much of a CPU bottleneck on your Q6600 if overclocked to 3.6GHz, if at all. There might be some, but not much. Just sayin' cause I have the same proc and I have a GTX 470, soon to be SLI
Dell Optiplex 745
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Q6600 (incoming) Dell proprietary Intel Q965 Express Chipset XFX HD 5770 (incoming) 4GB Patriot DDR2 800 
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Dell Optiplex 745
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Q6600 (incoming) Dell proprietary Intel Q965 Express Chipset XFX HD 5770 (incoming) 4GB Patriot DDR2 800 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
Hitachi Deskstar 160GB 7200RPM DVDRW Stock Windows XP 32 (for the time being) 
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post #4 of 4
Well, look at it this way ... in the very worst case scenario, if you were 100% cpu bottlenecked (which would be a super rare occasion), with this upgrade you'd enjoy the same FPS you get now ... only you could still get them even running significantly higher image quality settings than what you can currently run.

A large majority of the time though you'll get considerable better FPS with a 460 vs a 9800GT, even if you left your CPU at stock.

And yes, pulling out an OC to 3.2GHz on a q6600 is relatively trivial to accomplish, esp. since you already have the h5o cooler going ... as long as your system ram can handle an FSB of 355MHz (which, running a 1:1 multi will put your RAM at 710MHz in 'DDR-speak') hitting 3.2 should be cake.

Experienced OC'ers can typically coax 3.5-3.8 out of those chips, depending on the individual chip, the cooling, the board, and the RAM. But honestly a q6600 at 3.2GHz is a fine chip for any single GPU setup, aside from perhaps the 580.
    
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xeon X5675 6-core @ 4.1ghz (1.29v, 20x205 +ht ) rampage iii extreme msi rx470 gaming X (the $159 budget king) 3 x 2gb corsair xms3 pc12800 (9-9-9-24-1T@1600MHz) 
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hynix 250gb ssd (boot), 2tb deskstar (apps),1tb... plextor px-712sa - still the best optical drive... corsair h8o v2 aio W10 home 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
xeon X5675 6-core @ 4.1ghz (1.29v, 20x205 +ht ) rampage iii extreme msi rx470 gaming X (the $159 budget king) 3 x 2gb corsair xms3 pc12800 (9-9-9-24-1T@1600MHz) 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
hynix 250gb ssd (boot), 2tb deskstar (apps),1tb... plextor px-712sa - still the best optical drive... corsair h8o v2 aio W10 home 
MonitorPowerCaseAudio
asus vw266h 25.5" (1920x1200) abs sl (enermax revolution) * single 70A rail 850w silverstone rv-03 XFi Titanium 
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